Shoulda, coulda, woulda

Or how to trust the timing in your life

5 min read

Shoulda, coulda, woulda

Did you ever feel that your life is a list full of boxes waiting to be ticked, so that everyone around you is happy?

Did you ever experience a birthday depression because of all the things you were supposed to have accomplished by the time, but somehow weren’t getting even close?

I know I did!

The big drama occurred when I turned 30. I wasn’t taking any action, or talking so much about the ideas of happiness that were only dangling thoughts in my head. But somehow I kinda expected that things would just fall into place. Magically. Because people get lucky. Cool things happen to cool people all the time, and I am cool.. right?

Without really diving deeper to understanding why I was hurt, or what kind of expectations brought me to this moment of suffering, I decided to adopt a stoic attitude in life. On my next couple of birthdays I was more or less accepting my fate, humming “que sera sera, whatever will be, will be”. I was feeling a bit better, but I was far from being happy. Also I was still not able to mentally grasp, why things never worked out for me? I was still in jobs I didn’t like, still living the same disastrous relationship only with different partners, still not getting more money for my work, or having a better apartment. I was stuck living a boring life, that didn’t even feel like it was mine.

I was beating myself up and focusing selectively at other people’s lives, only to support my theory that everyone around me has their ***t together. They’re achieving everything that I shoulda, coulda, woulda!


Aha moment

Finally I had some valuable insights into this when I was in my mid thirties. I kept thinking that all I wanted was a good job, enough money to do the things I wanted to do, a good relationship and so on. All this sounded reasonable and doable, so why didn’t I have it already? Trying to figure out what I was doing wrong, an epiphany happened to me. I realized that I never really got to be specific about my desires. I mean ABSOLUTELY specific! How could I describe in every detail a good job? What do I do in this dream job? Who am I with? What inspires me? What am I striving to succeed? How much money EXACTLY is enough for me to have everything I want? And what are PRECISELY these things that I want? Also how do I define with ACCURACY being in a good relationship?

I was shocked by the fact that I didn’t have a clue what it is that I want, and even more shocked that I didn’t have a clue that I could be so clueless!

I got to tell you this process took a while and it was painful. Painful in a way that makes you want to laugh and cry at the same time, when you finally start getting to know yourself. It is like returning home after a long, exhausting hike. Like discovering a safe spot to rest, after feeling exposed and unsafe for a long time. I realized that I have been spending my life, instead of living it. I finally managed to expand beyond all the roles that were given to me, all the expectations that came from outside, only to focus and comprehend my own desires, my personal limitations, and my true potential.

The result of this process was simply amazing. The next few years were full of new experiences. I moved to another country and learned a new language. I changed several jobs until I switched to freelancing, which was my ultimate goal. I had a business training that gave me career options in a new direction. I found my love, my partner in life and we have a daughter. I changed several apartments until I found the perfect one for me, and I am close to the financial freedom that I dreamt of. I implemented everything I learned from my journey in The Smart Plan. Every single one of the above achievements were things that I had written down at a time that I could barely finance myself for the next couple of months.


It is what it is

I consider myself a late bloomer in life. I have to admit that I wonder, what would have happened if I had started practising self awareness earlier in my life. When this happens I focus my attention at the present moment and remind myself that it’s unnecessary and counterproductive to dwell on the past. I really don’t know what could have happened, and there is obviously no way to find out! It is only wishful thinking and my vivid imagination getting creative in my head!

I used to be my own worst critic and the fact that it took me so long to start living consciously, not only made me feel uncomfortable, but it made me feel angry with myself. Creating a space of self-love and acceptance turned out to be one of the biggest challenges in my life. I learned to be kind towards myself, and to accept that I had to go through these experiences to become the person I am today.

Right here, right now I know deep down in my heart that everything happened exactly when it was meant to happen. I trust the timing in my life.


You are not too old, you are not too young, it is not too late

You may also struggle with the timing in your life. Feeling too old to start a new career, or change your relationship status, or go for that big change in your life. On the other hand you might feel too young to go for that position, or stand tall and support your ideas.
Let go of these labels!
They are only dysfunctional beliefs that keep you from pursuing exactly the life you want and deserve!

I am confident that things show up in your life when you are ready for them.

All you have to do is gain clarity in your life. Embrace the fear of the unknown and try new things. Reframe failure, think of setbacks as situations you have to go through, to find the wisdom to move on. And when you fall, give yourself the attention and kindness you would give a friend.

Tune in to your own thoughts, emotions, actions, and motivations. Ask yourself what gives purpose and joy to your life and become mindful of every decision you take. And don’t forget that you are not alone! Search for like-minded people and build a supportive community around you!

Finally ask yourself, if no one told you who you were, who would you want to be?