{Author Mindy Gress}

That’s just not you. You’re not the person I thought you were. I miss the old you.

It’s ok to change.

A few years ago I started, unknowingly, down a path of reinvention. I was struggling with some aspects of life and I sought out counseling. In my time with Rachel, she helped me identify as an empath. While that is a topic that requires its own post, my intent for including that information is that it was an important discovery for my personal growth. As an empath, I was unknowingly taking on other people’s emotions, feelings and sometimes even their persona.

It’s ok to evolve.

As I’ve come to better understand this gift, I’ve been able to recognize what actions and feelings are my own. While this has been an enlightening breakthrough for me, it’s also the reason why people from my past may feel like I have changed. I no longer blindly agree to the opinions of others. I’m learning to control my personality and not just take on the behaviors of those around me. I’m leaning more fully than ever who I am.

It’s ok to reinvent yourself.

This journey has not always been easy. In all honesty, I’ve had some difficult conversations with family members, lost some friends and taken some people by surprise. On the other hand, this knowledge has helped me to strengthen the relationships that are so meaningful in my life and, I am unapologetically reinventing myself. You should feel safe to do that too.

It’s ok to change…as long as it’s for you and your happiness.

So, maybe you woke up this morning and decided you want to go to church; even though you’ve never considered yourself religious.

Maybe you’ve decided you want to get a membership to that gym, you know, the one that you swore you’d never pay that kind of money to be a member.

Maybe you no longer want to be a teacher and instead, you dream of owning your own business.

Maybe you don’t feel a connection to your current group of friends. Maybe they gossip too much. Maybe they drink too much. Maybe you want to be part of a book club or a prayer group instead.

Maybe instead of a night out on the town, you would rather sit at home with your family.

Whatever the change is, it’s ok.

It’s ok to try something new.

It’s ok to find the people that truly make you happy and accept you for all that you are and want to be.

It’s ok to seek out a job that not only pays the bills, yet also makes the time spent “on the job” have meaning in your life.

The people and things in your life who are truly meant to be with you shouldn’t hold you back.

Friend, growth is beautiful and change is necessary. I won’t lie, it might make others uncomfortable, but, that’s not your problem. Take the chance on yourself. Move forward and lean into being unapologetically YOU.

“She understood that the hardest times in life to go through were when you were transitioning from one version of yourself to another.” Sarah Addison Allen

Mindy Gress is a Christ-loving, sing at the top of her lungs while driving, dance in the kitchen, quirky when you get to know her, long hot baths with good books, Mid-west loving girl; a writer, mama and wife. You can hear more from Mindy at the She Is Women's Conference in Spencer IA on January 31st.

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