It always starts with a feeling.
Something isn’t right, and I can’t figure out what. I’m so anxious I can barely sit still.
It keeps me up at night, pacing and pondering. Days pass, but the feeling does not.
And then all of a sudden the answer will come to me.
The situation is always different but the conclusion I reach is always the same: I need to make a change. A big one.
Some call it intuition. I’ve followed it many times in my life, and it has never lead me astray.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned about myself, it’s that sometimes I need to make radical changes in order to be truly happy. I have no choice.
It can be really scary, to leave a marriage or a highly successful career, but every time I’ve followed that feeling my life has transformed for the better.
That feeling has come back. It’s tugging at my insides even as I type this.
When I launched the Positive People Army, it ignited a fire in me. I’d always known that I wanted to make a difference and spread positivity, and this blog became how I would do that. Or at least a great start.
I labeled it my Passion Project.
As the weeks passed, more and more people started reading, sharing, and following. Some folks even decided to join in and submit their own articles.
The blog was flourishing. The army was growing.
I should have felt pure joy. But the more the blog grew, the more angst I started to feel. Why did I feel this way?
Writing and sharing positive energy was exactly why I created the Positive People Army, and I was getting exactly what I wanted.
So what was I missing?
It reminded me of something that happened when my eldest son was about to turn 18.
As his birthday approached, a strange uneasiness began to come over me. I just couldn’t put my finger on why.
Then one day the answer came to me. Or rather, it was thrust into my face.
During an argument my son actually yelled, “You’re not the boss of me anymore!”
My heart sank, and I suddenly understood what had been making me so uncomfortable.
It was the thought of his impending transition into adulthood. He was going from someone who needed their mother to someone who didn’t.
Throughout Michael’s life I’ve tried my best to readjust and grow as a parent, but this particular circumstance was very different.
Since the time he was born I had made every decision in his life. I picked the food he ate and the clothes he wore. I decided which school he went to and what extracurricular activities he would enjoy.
In essence I was the manager of his life. It truly was the best job I could ever have asked for. But he no longer needed or wanted a supervisor.
I couldn’t get his words out of my head. You’re not the boss of me anymore. They echoed through my mind for days.
After many sleepless nights I finally admitted my discomfort to my husband. I told him how saddened I was to be losing Michael.
He looked at me sympathetically, held my hand and said, “Sweetheart you will never lose Michael, he loves you so much. You just need to readjust your role and probably give yourself a new title and the two of you will be just fine.”
His words hit me like a sack of bricks. He was right!
Why had I thought I would ever lose my son? All I had to do was modify how I was parenting and give myself a new label.
With that thought I decided to retire as Manager of Michael’s Childhood. I then gave myself the fancy new title, Consultant to His Adulthood. It has a nice ring to it, don’t you think?
And it was a simple change that worked.
Michael is now 20 years old and both of us have settled into our new roles quite well.
Remembering this moment helped me realize that maybe I needed help finding the answers, like my husband had helped me regarding Michael.
A number of days later I ran into a wonderful friend I hadn’t seen in a while. I’ve got a lot of those.
The moment she saw me she started gushing about the blog. She shared her favourite stories and congratulated me on releasing such a positive force into the world.
I blushed and thanked her for her kind words. Then I sighed and confessed that I was feeling some unease about it, but had no idea why.
We talked about how I felt writing the posts and how much it meant to me to receive others people’s stories. She asked me what my hopes and dreams were for the Positive People Army.
Then the most amazing thing happened. I got the answer.
While I was speaking to her I unintentionally changed the mental label I had given the blog from my Passion Project to My Life’s Project.
The moment I said it I stopped myself. My entire body shuddered and I could feel goosebumps rising on my skin.
“O.M.G.” I said to her. “I think I just discovered why I’ve felt so funny. I want the blog to be more than just a hobby. I hadn’t even realized this until I said it!”
My girlfriend laughed and said, “I guess you need to start figuring out what that means and get to work on making it a reality.”
It’s terrifying to admit something like this out loud, even more so to actually write it down. But I know deep down that if I don’t, it won’t happen. Without people knowing what I want, the opportunities will never be offered to me.
I struggled to write this post for almost a week, afraid to put it out there in the universe, but I just had to do it.
And within 24 hours of me writing the first draft I was emailed and asked to do my first radio interview about the Army. The universe had answered me in record time. It was an amazing sign and an incredible start to this journey I have ahead of me!
Once again, making a mental change had made all the difference in the world.
I realize this won’t happen overnight, and I could either be incredibly successful or fail miserably.
The way I look at it, I need to decide what kind of life I want. Do I want my life to be a carousel, going round and round in a predictable pattern? Or do I want my life to be an unpredictable roller coaster ride, joyous, scary, and beautiful?
In my heart I know there’s only one real choice. I choose the roller coaster, and I’m going to ride it with my hands up.
Watch out world, it’s time for the Positive People Army to become a phenomenon.
Join the army and let’s make a difference together!
Written by Heidi Allen – Founder of the Positive People Army
If you like this story you will love “Grief…It Just Takes Time”
Check out the CKTB Radio Interview
To read more about the signs that have happened in my life check out “If You Build It…”