Reinvention: Purposefully Forging A New You
There are several kinds of
reinvention, but we’re looking at proactive
Reinvention. Proactive reinvention can be the toughest of the three. In
proactive reinvention, we’re at a place that’s safe and comfortable at that
Major life changes aren’t
immediately required. We might even be able to keep on coasting just as we are,
but that’s not a satisfying place for us anymore. Even though reinvention can
be scary, we still have the desire to do it Reinvention seems better than where
Maybe we’re simply tired and
unfulfilled in our lives, our work, or our relationships. Sometimes all three
categories cry out for change. Proactive reinvention has the advantage of not
being urgent in most cases. You can be deliberate in your choices.
“What do I need in my life now? What do I want? What’s missing?”
To answer this question, we must
dig deep dig deep, and it’s not a quick process in most cases. Proactive
reinvention tends to arise out of a sense of dissatisfaction
about where we are in life or even who we are. We may only know that we want
Loves and Passions
What do you value? What gets your
engine running? If you could make a living at a hobby, what would it be?
Getting a handle on what you enjoy and what you love to do, how you love to
feel, and whom you love to be around lets you set some big, broad goals. In all
cases and steps of reinvention, ask yourself questions like:
How can I
make my passions a way of life?
How can my loves
and passions help me stay financially sound?
Do I have any
support to make the changes to become congruent with my passions?
Immediate options generally
include things like your skill set, your finances, your contacts and social
links in life. These can be springboards to the new you. Think of these as
assets you already must dedicate to your renewal.
teacher, mentor or sounding board
If you’ve got a general idea of
what you want to do, you can start homing in on sources of information and
expertise. Those sources can be people who are knowledgeable or experience with
the subject matter, profession, hobby, whatever it is that’s appealing to you.
If you know you want to reinvent yourself, but haven’t got a lock on a destination
yet, there’s no worry. Many people go through the renewal process without any
hint of a fixed destination or end-point in mind when they start off.
That said, it’s good to have
someone around who can give you ideas, feedback, and support that’s related to
The unknown is scary, but it can
also lead to some great discoveries. There are two big sources of it, too.
There’s the unknown out there in the world external to us, and the unknown
inside you. When you change your life, there’s bound to be internal changes
that you didn’t plan for. If planning were all it took to reinvent one’s life,
it’d be much simpler. Let the possibility of change flourish in you. If you try
hard to hang on to everything that you’ve got now, that you are now, nothing
Learn to live with fear while always going forward
Reinvention requires embracing
uncertainty. It means getting comfortable with discomfort. Doing new things,
trying new ways to be is scary! Allowing fear to stop us from changing is
always the biggest block to proactive reinvention.
Always. Unlike reactive
reinvention, when you must make big changes or face even worse situations than
self-renewal, proactive reinvention seems optional when we get scared, so we
have the option to retreat into safety. Safety is great. However, clinging to
the safety of the familiar ensures you will never reinvent yourself.
Regeneration of the self requires living with fear, too. Consider
as an example the situation of leaving one career for another, more ideal
career. Common wisdom says you must have another job before leaving your
That wisdom in this situation
kills any chance of getting that ideal job. It’s very hard, maybe impossible,
to prepare for a completely new profession while working a full-time job. A
dentist who leaves her job for another job as a dentist has changed locales but has not at all reinvented herself.
Making a jump from the known into
the unknown safely, with no risks, doesn’t happen. There is always some element
of risk. Learning to live with risk in order to get something you dearly want
is one of the biggest rewards of reinventing yourself.