ASH AMBIRGE

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“I Want to Do Something Else…But What?” Welcome To The Fucking Question That Everyone Is Asking Themselves.

In: Career, Finding Your Voice, Hard Stuff, Lady Balls, Life,

I have a dirty little hypothesis.

It’s about the discontent. The unrest. This global epidemic that’s happening behind closed doors of women wanting something else.

It’s why the LuLaRoe, the Advocare, the Younique.
It’s why books like Eat, Pray, Love became bestsellers.
It’s why we’re spending so much time on the Internet, too, and drinking eleventy billion bottles of wine with lunch. (NOT THAT I HAVE A PROBLEM WITH THAT, SAYS THE GIRL WHO JUST DRANK A PROSECCO AT THE AIRPORT BAR.)

It’s all in search of something else.

…but what? they ask.

And that is the question, indeed.

But, what? 

When you’ve got a entire population of women searching for something else, but not entirely sure what they’re searching for, the problem is not what they’re doing—it’s what they haven’t done. It’s an identity crisis in disguise as a career crisis. And I think it’s plaguing so many good women for one simple reason:

Everyone's taught to be a good wife, mother, sister and friend—but in taking on all of these roles, she never learns who she is.

And she’s lost. She’s so hopelessly lost. She’s lost inside herself, and she doesn’t know how to get back. Who was I before I became everything to everyone else?

And the answer might very well be devastating: she was no one. Because women aren’t giving themselves a chance to develop their own opinions, their own reasons, their own identities, before becoming endlessly entwined in someone else’s. With all the pressure to go to school and get married and buy the house and have babies, who has time?

Then boom.

One day ten, twenty, thirty years later you wake up and you have no idea what you even want, because you don’t know who you are. It’s like picking out a career—and an entire life–for a stranger in Secret Santa.

So when women come to me and they say, “I want to do something else…but what?” it occurs to me that this is not a career question: this is a personal development question.

How do you get to know yourself again—or maybe for the first time?

You do it the same way you get to know someone else: by doing things together.

Except this time, it’s a party of one. You take yourself out of the house. You experiment with new. You put yourself in awkward situations. You do get out there and do every goddamn thing you hate. And then you get out there and do every goddamn thing you think you like. And little by little, you gather data about who you are and what it all means. You become an intern of your own life. And you figure yourself out, clue by clue.

Because it's a scientific process as much as any other: you can’t get to know who you are without knowing how you’ll react. It’s the only evidence we have. Everything else is just wishful thinking.

So my dirty little hypothesis is this:

Instead of asking “what?” perhaps the real question we should be asking is “…who?”

There are so many lost little girls, out there, in the bodies of women.

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