I don't remember the exact moment it all starting crumbling, except that it did. Maybe it was the combination of moving back home with my parents or the draining commute I always had to make into the city or the difficulty I found in waking up every morning.
I just remember that one day, I couldn't keep living like this.
I was working on a business plan for a year and a half, determined to open a gym. This is my calling, I kept telling myself.
That's a year and a half of number crunching, investor meetings, retail space viewings, and thousands of open tabs in Chrome.
I had made the mistake of telling everyone and their mother that I was opening a gym, hoping that it would hold me accountable. It's a good marketing tactic, right? Well, instead of motivating me, it did the entire opposite.
Every person who asked how the gym was coming along should have been a moment of gratefulness that someone cared, when in fact, it was a stressor that I didn't have an epic update. It ended up turning into my most dreaded question, already prepped with a lie of "It's going great! Just searching for the perfect location."
Every single day was dreadful. I kept rewriting my mission statement, forgetting the business model, and trying to remind myself why I wanted to do this.
One day, I was finally honest with myself.
I wanted to do this because I wanted to be cool. I wanted to end up on shows like "How I Built This" and reminisce with Guy Raz on these hard days while humbling standing in glory for pushing past all the hardships. I wanted to be successful, the one that revolutionized my industry, the one that really saw what the people needed. It's every entrepreneur's dream, right?
I had to be honest with myself. I couldn't be that person if I wasn't inspired and I had to ask myself: is this what I really wanted to do? It wasn't. It was the complete opposite.
So, I stopped. I saved my business plan, tucked it into the depths of Google Drive, and promised I would come back one day if it felt right.
I looked around me, my room still filled with unopened boxes from moving back home, and felt sad. This is not who I wanted to be nor where I wanted to be. I had to change.
I asked my boyfriend if he would be up for moving. For leaving this city that would always have my heart. He said yes. He found a job in Los Angeles, a complete opposite of what I had been used to in San Francisco, and my little freelancing-self rejoiced. The opposite is exactly what I needed. Thank you to all the partners out there who have stable jobs to support their dreamy and visionary counterparts.
We moved. We stuffed our belongings in a tightly packed U-haul (never again) and drove all the way down to this concrete jungle where the traffic is absurd and the people always seem to be camera ready.
I loved it. In an instant, I was transformed. It was as if my heart craved inspiration and life again, something I knew that I couldn't find back home anymore.
Here, they don't know me. They don't know the story I tried to create for myself. Here, I am incognito. And it is in this silence, this hidden cover, this quiet exploration of new life, that I am searching for the thing that makes my heart flutter. There is so much space to dance, again.
I don't know what my epic thing will be. I have no gosh darn clue. I don't even know how I am going to get there. All I know is that in this new place, I am revived. There's an opportunity in every corner and the world has never seemed more welcoming. And that, is the most inspirational thing I have ever known.