You’re finally out of the rut, now stay out.

Two years ago around this time, I received a renewal contract for my job and went to sign it without thinking. It wasn’t until after I signed my name and my life away for another year did I realize that I never thought about whether I really wanted to stay there indefinitely. And I also realized that if I didn’t start thinking about it, that cycle would continue on and on to no end.

While I was content with my de facto decision to work there another year, I knew in my heart it had to be the last. At the time I figured that in a year I would be back on the interview circuit, simply trying to figure out who I would sign another year of my life over to (it’s just the way it works in the education field).

As Christmas rolled around, I knew what was coming. New teaching vacancies would open up and the job search loomed. What should have been an exciting time for me felt like anything but. However, instead of focusing on the anxiety of it, I started listening to my heart. A change in geography wasn’t going to magically fix anything. First, I realized that I didn’t want to teach if I didn’t have to. And second, I realized that I didn’t have to.

I didn’t want to because quietly I knew there were other things I wanted to accomplish and pursue. I finally knew not what I wanted to do, but needed to. Something I’ve always done in my head, just never really shared with anyone. I needed to write.

In the past, I had always been intrigued with writing a blog, but I didn’t know what it would be about. I have a lot of interests (music, sports, nutrition, fitness, travel), but I couldn’t pick just one to focus on, sort of a Jack-of-all-trades dilemma.

So how did I finally come around to the idea for this blog? Well, while I left the only teaching job I ever knew and opted not to get another one, I didn’t get out of education all together. Instead, I switched to a freelance lifestyle of subbing, a mix of short-term and long-term assignments filling in for teachers on maternity or medical leave. While it can be sometimes scary not knowing what you’re getting into each day, it’s also pretty fun. As a classic introvert, it wasn’t easy to start out, new faces everyday, new surroundings, new everything. But I persevered, faked it better at times and wanted to die at others (Kindergarteners are terrifying). I’ve been challenged, came out on the other end better for it, but despite all of the personal growth, I somehow found myself back in the rut of life, settled into the new routine and unhappy once more. This time though, out of my frustration I channeled that energy into the idea for this blog.

Because I know I can’t be the only one who feels this way sometimes; like you’re doing things that make other people happy or just to get by. My goal when I left my job was to focus on what makes me happy and only do that. I had to remind myself of that when I realized I was stuck again. It never happens quickly or suddenly, which is why it’s so hard not to recognize sooner. Once I got myself out, I never wanted it to happen again. I know, we say that with everything (dieting, anyone?), but I meant it. That’s what this blog is about. Getting out of the rut and living life inspired. If I can do it, so can you. Hopefully this journey will inspire others to do the same.

I’m out of the rut, finally. Now stay out.