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Stop Waiting for Life to Happen and Start Living It Now

“The grass is always greener where you water it.” ~Unknown

For a while there, I was a little peeved with the world. I’ve just recently snapped out of it, and I just want to sing and dance and share this message with everyone: Stop waiting!

Last year, after living through some profound experiences—travelling extensively, soul searching, attending incredible life-changing events, shedding massive masks, overcoming huge obstacles, and deciding to change the course of my life completely—I came back to my life, to my home, and sat back and thought to myself, “This is what life is about!”

I was on a snowball effect high of massive changes. It was the most intense feeling that seemed to go on endlessly, and the changes just seemed to keep on unfolding in my life naturally, organically.

I dropped out of a program at school I wasn’t really committed to, with the intention of going to culinary college after a year off. I faced the world for the first time, trading in my signature sunglasses for an eye patch, after hiding a facial difference I sustained from a car accident almost a decade ago. I returned to my yoga practice, focused on my health and vitality, and dropped 30 pounds.

Last year was amazing, and it just seemed to keep getting better.

I landed an amazing job at the company I was dying to work for during my year off before returning to school. I met amazing people and seemed to attract great new friends into my life. I traveled more for personal development courses and seminars and soaked up the amazing atmosphere that is unique to Tony Robbins events.

Around Christmas time, I began to sense a shift in myself and tried to brush it off. It wasn’t much; it’s just that it was no longer effortless to be happy, and I began to feel a little forced at times. Some challenges at work arose, and I was beginning to think that there was something wrong with me.

After months and months of work that flowed easily, I began to realize that the wheels of my life weren’t moving all too smoothly anymore.

At that point, I started to retreat. I had huge goals, big dreams on the horizon for the year, and it scared the crap out of me when things weren’t progressing.

I began to take on a passenger mentality in my life, making excuses for my inactions and myself. When things got worse in any area, it was a huge blow to my self-esteem, and I let it break me down.

Mid-winter I entered what I consider to be a “winter season” of life. I got fired from the job that I loved, despite what I thought were my best attempts.

I stopped going to the gym, because my fitness goals were tied to my identity at work. I stopped practicing yoga, for fear of running into ex-co-workers, and even began to dislike practicing at all.

I felt so ashamed to be in a place in my life where I had failed, after being so happy and wanting so many amazing things to come to my life.

I let that sense of failure eat away at my spirit, and I became defeated in the worst possible way.

I didn’t want to listen to anyone or anything. I became annoyed with my friends who were going places in life. I was annoyed with myself especially for believing in hogwash and thinking that changing your life actually lasts.

The truth is, I was waiting. I was waiting for something to come and shake me, wake me up out of that funky state. I was waiting for life to knock on my door step and say, “Here! I’ve delivered your answers! Ta Da! Easy way out!”

I was waiting for things to stop being so difficult, for things to ease up on my plate, for things to miraculously get better, because it felt like a lot was happening to me.

I put the weight back on. I avoided friends. I didn’t do anything really. I worked part-time, but whenever I wasn’t working, I was sure to drown any real thoughts in mindless television.

I stopped writing. I avoided creating my daily gratitude lists, because they would inevitably become hateful rants. The memories of the year before and all of those amazing accomplishments seemed like someone else’s.

After much reflection and finally taking ownership, I am happy to say I am standing on higher ground today. It wasn’t easy to snap out of it. In fact, I made sure it was hard.

When my boyfriend, the closest person in my life, finally called me out on my behavior and provided a harsh but necessary reflection to where I had led my life, I broke down. I avoided the accusations with an angry response initially, but I began to journal frantically when I realized the pain I was living with was self-inflicted.

It was then that I realized that taking ownership of my life also meant I had the power to change it. The more I wrote, the more I discovered about what I want. I had to face the things I didn’t want to face in order to create a roadmap for myself.

That is the thing about life: It gets hard. Things go awry. You get fired. You fall out of pace with your life. You end up eating a pound of chocolate. So what?

Then I remembered this question someone once posed to me:

“What if life didn’t happen to you, it happened for you?”

What if I examined all of the crap that had happened “to” me before and saw where it had led me? What if I realized there was a purpose for every circumstance of difficulty, struggle, pain, and trauma? How would my perspective change if I realized my quality of life is directly related to my reactions?

Would I stop and appreciate these moments of darkness, if I realized they are necessary to guide me to the light in my life?

With a change in focus, you can change your life. If you’re looking to change your life too, realize you have the power to do it.

Instead of waiting for life to happen, make it happen. Instead for waiting for a change, create a change.

Create a vision for yourself and your life and use the opportunities that come when life throws you a curve ball to review your goals and dreams.

You may discover a speed bump was a wake up call to focus on something important you may have otherwise overlooked.

Where do you see yourself in six months, in the most important areas of your life? How is your life incredible? What is something that you enjoy then that isn’t in your life today? What excitement, adventures, and amazing experiences do you have? Who do you know? Where have you been? How do you feel? What do you do on a regular basis? How are you awesome?

Now draw it in to three months: What has happened and needs to happen three months from now to get to your vision? Be specific! Are you trying something new? Have you changed your daily habits? What do you fill your time with? What is it like to be this awesome you, three months from now?

Hone in, one month from today. What is different? What steps have you taken to this new-you six months away? What are you up to? What have you accomplished? What are you working toward? What have you consistently been doing for the past 30 days?

What happens to you a week from now? In seven days, how have you changed your habits and your life to steer its course to something new and incredible? What are you planning? What is being implemented? How do you feel?

Now plan tomorrow. Repeat daily.

Plan your time, because time flies, but the good news is you’re the pilot of your life. Stop waiting for life to happen to you and take ownership for leading your life. You have led your life to amazing places already, and there is no stopping where you can go from here.

Photo by Bohman

Avatar of Patrycja Domurad

About Patrycja Domurad

Patrycja is an aspiring pâtissier. She attributes her strengths to: losing her eye in a car accident at 14, living with a facial difference since, triumphing over personal demons, and finding love. She writes to inspire people to challenge beliefs about their lives and seek greatness! Follow her at inspiredgreatness.tumblr.com.

Announcement: Wish you could change your past? Learn to let go and create a life you love with the Tiny Buddha course!
  • Joy

    Wow! What an amazing post. Thank you so much Patrycja, this is confirmation for me about the happenings in my life at the moment. I am grateful…

  • http://inspiretothrive.com/ Lisa Buben

    Love this post, I always believe you have to make things happen and not wait around wondering….Very inspiring!

  • David Orman

    I really liked this article. It was personal and took courage to share this. These are the things that many of us can relate to. Thanks for writing this.

  • eluongo

    Great post!  So easy to lose our way when things get difficult.

  • Stephanie Currie

    I truly thank you for this post. I am right at that turning point in my life now. Have had a terrible past couple years and I’m finally waking up! This is great inspiration and encourgement. I applaud you for sharing your personal story with us.

  • leonardo da vinci

    “it had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. they went out and happened to things.”

  • http://twitter.com/auntiechocolate Charlotte Bonini

    I read this and wept – I made myself read it out loud, otherwise I would just skim and not take the true essence of the words with me. There is a lot of power here. I have been facing my own challenges for about a year now. Thank you for the affirmation that I can be the pilot, taking control of the direction of my own life.

  • LFO63

    This post touched me so deeply because I can relate to it in many ways…thank you because when we read stories like this one, you realize that you are not alone :)

    THANK YOU!!!

  • Andrew_vo

    Get busy living, or get busy dying. 

  • Linahelena K

    Brilliant. So so inspiring. Will follow your lead in planning my day, week, month, quarter, half year!

  • Patrycja Domurad

    Charlotte, thank you for your kind words. I recently found a quote: “People cry, not because they’re weak, but because they’ve been strong too long”. I commend you on being willing to risk feeling the pain of asking yourself the hard questions. Best wishes on the journey ahead! :) 

  • Patrycja Domurad

    it has changed my life! I hope it inspires you as well! Thank you! 

  • http://www.scratchingonpaper.blogspot.com/ Betsy

    Thanks so much for this…timely and very inspiring!!! 

  • Patrycja Domurad

    Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I am so glad it resonated with someone and I really appeciate it! 

  • Joy

    Patrycja, I went to your site and read the story of your life. I had tears running through my face and wept out old, not because I felt sorry for you but because I was in awe of how courageous you are. I’m going through a transition(unexpected divorce) in my life right now and I consciously chose to look at this period as a gift full of infinite possibilities and opportunities to live the life I always wanted to live. People like you inspire me to see the beauty in everything and be grateful for all that life has to offer. Thank you so much and I will keep on following you on your site. Warmest regards from South Africa xxx

  • inspiredgreatness

    Joy, thank you so much for taking the time to read my story and for connecting with me here. It warms my heart to read what you wrote – I am just blessed to be able to use these experiences in my life to inspire others. Thank you! I wish you the best in overcoming life’s current obstacles and I admire your power. Lots of Love, P

  • christine

    oh. my. god. i am living this story you told right now. i just got fired from a job that i loved so very much, and my head has been spinning ever since. it’s been almost a week now, and i don’t even know where this week has gone. but reading your post re-invigorated me. thank you so much, and thank you tiny buddha, for always opening my eyes at the very moment i need them open again. 

  • Joy

    Thank you P xoxo

  • Joe

    Fantastic! Just did the same thing and am starting my revamp. It feels great. Thank you for your inspiration!

  • Lotrgrl

    Great now I have to stop the pity party I had planned…with the theme being “No one could understand what I’m going thru” because you do! I WAS miffed at the world because I had pulled myself up and now it should ALL be different! But my cheeriness was forced whereas befor it was simple…Thank you for such a timely deliver.

  • Chris

    Wow, what an inspiring, relate-able read. Thank you

  • Sundancebleu

    Thanks so much for this Patrycja!  I too have come from a point in my life where I felt like everything was falling into place to a place where I feel lost, troubled and stuck.  I think I’m waiting for things to change.  I so appreciate what you have written, it’s inspiration for me to put my uniform back on and get back into the game instead of sitting on the sidelines.

    - Roger

  • http://tealacearsenicandwhiskers.wordpress.com/ Chiaki L’Argent

    Thank you, Patrycja! I have struggled with depression my whole life and a few years ago I turned my life around for the better. I taught myself how to create my own happiness.
    However, 6 months ago I was forced to quit my job to be able to continue to be a carer for my chronically ill partner. Trying to work and care at the same time made me physically ill to the point where I was in so much pain that I couldn’t walk or even sleep. I’ve been slipping back into depression because of all of this and lately I’ve been feeling completely helpless. This was exactly what I needed to hear.xxx Chiaki

  • Artemis

    Very inspiring, thank you for sharing and wishing you many joys and happiness in life.

  • uthinkithink

    Hi Patrycja. You are courage!!! Thank you for such an inspirational post. I am at a crossroads and are at a point where I have to as you put it; create the change instead of waiting for it. Best of luck in becoming a pâtissier. I have no doubt you will be a great one; because everything you will creat will be created with love and passion.
    Thank you for inspiring me.
    Cheers!!!!

  • Christina

    WOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Cauvery

    Amazing post. I particularly liked the setting of goals for 6 months, 3 months, 1 month, week and day and then review it. It makes complete sense. Thanks a lot.

  • Adil

    Amazing Article.. Seems like you have written my biography.. Wish you the Best

  • Donovan Dreyer

    Way to BRING IT in life! You are a difference maker. Keep up the good work because we sure need as much of it as you can bring! Scintillating post!

  • Caroline

    I was just sitting here wondering what am I gonna do with my life?? You have gave me a start Thank You. God Bless You.

  • Bhanu

    I have been going through times since a year, Tried to read different articles but nothing inspired me as much as this one. Thank you soooooo much.

  • David

    Thank you so much for this. Wonderful post. This was helpful to me.

  • David

    Agreed! Isn’t it easy to buy into the idea that most people have it all together, but we are hopelessly screwed up and inadequate? I’m grateful for the reminder that the candor of this post provided.

  • lisarombach

    Did I miss something???? The problem is that I have no vision.

  • Paula

    this was very honest, brave and thought provoking. thank you for sharing!

  • http://cooksconcreteremoval.com.au steve

    cool stuff iv started a business and its growing and want to fine tune a few bad and stale habits .