Lately, I've been feeling a little unsettled.
I'm tired of my job.

I'm so over getting up early to go to work and then coming home 12 hours later physically and mentally drained. I find myself wondering what it would be like to work somewhere where I'm not worried about getting screamed at by a pissy surgeon, or a place where I don't have a constant fear about a patient dying on my watch. I find myself Google searching who in the heck invented the 40 hour work week and considering trying to contact members of Congress to see if I could get that changed. I find myself daydreaming about moving to Europe where people take siestas during the workday and enjoy 2 hour dinners with good friends and good wine.
I'm craving a better work-life balance like I crave Chick Fil A on Sundays.

I've been in the workforce for about 4 years now.
Does everybody get this little itch?
Is it just because real life has sunk all the way in and you realize that adulthood isn't as great as you thought it would be? Or is it just me feeling this way because I'm not where I want to be yet? I just can't help feeling that I was made for so much more than just paying the bills. 

I see others seemingly living the American Dream, and I'm envious.

I started the Abbylish blog because I thought it would be a fun hobby that could possibly grow into a side hustle. I have always enjoyed fashion and staying up to date on trends. I followed other bloggers for all sorts of fashion and lifestyle inspiration, and I thought to myself, "I could do that!" It has definitely been more work than I originally thought it would be, but it is work that I want to do. Since starting this blog, I have felt a drive and passion that I haven't felt in a long time. I enjoy creating content for other women like me. I love the new online friendships I've made. Also, I answer only to myself, and that feels good.

But every once in a while, I get discouraged.
I think to myself, "this blog is just another silly hobby that's not going to go anywhere. In 5 years, I'll look back on it and laugh at myself." When I have these thoughts, I just want to quit. To get out before I make too big of a fool of myself. But then I think about emails that I get at work about retirement parties for co-workers. They always say things like, "Join us as we celebrate so-and-so for 35 years of service!"
And then my eye starts twitching and my self diagnosed stomach ulcer flairs up.
The thought of working at Cookeville Regional Medical Center, or any hospital for that matter, for 30 more years makes me almost lose my cool. I start asking myself what I was thinking in college. Now I understand why people camp out in college for 7 years with an undecided major. Why did I rush into nursing? Sure, I'm relatively good at it, but is that really what I want to do? Why do we have to make such life altering decisions at such a young age? I didn't know what the heck I was doing when I was 18! I just picked a degree that I could obtain quickly so that I could get out of college and start making all that money, honey!

I see others seemingly killing it at their Dream Job, and I'm envious.

But "seemingly" is the key word here. 
Theodore Roosevelt was quoted as saying, "comparison is the thief of joy."
At a recent church service I attended, the preacher stated, "once you open the door to comparison, you allow evil to come into your life and convince you that you need things that you didn't even want in the first place."
I believe both of these quotes with all my heart.
And if comparison is the offense, then social media is the culprit.
Social media: the same amazing outlets that allow people to produce killer content, expand their horizons, and feel so empowered and confident simultaneously fill users' hearts with doubt and discouragement.
I'm included in this, here.
Big time.

Before I even started Abbylish, I found myself falling into this social media comparison trap. I even took a fast from social media for a few months, and it was so freeing. I felt like I had so much more time on my hands when I wasn't sucked into the time wasting vortex that is Instagram. I would see people, including my husband, glued to their phones when I wasn't and realized how annoying it was. I started enjoying people, places, and events for what they were and not just "for the 'gram." But then, after a few months, I reactivated my accounts. My addiction was still light years better than it had been in the past. I didn't personally post near as much. I unfollowed a lot of accounts that were just filling my heart with jealousy. Things were good.

I guess I got a little over confident though. I told myself that I could separate the social media good from the bad now. So, I had no qualms about starting this blog. The #girlboss blogging community is an exciting place to be! It's empowering and uplifting. It's full of women building up other women.
In fact, so many bloggers, celebrities, etc. are transparent about the fact that the perfectly photo shopped pictures they post on Instagram are not real life. They talk about their struggles, flaws, and worries and admit that they aren't perfect.
But this is what is SO CRAZY about social media: everbody knows that the things we see on social media are not real life, AND YET WE ARE STILL SO ENVIOUS!
So, just like tons of other people out there, I flood my brain with images of other people seemingly living their best life, and I've convinced myself that I need to be happy too. That I deserve happiness, and what I have right now is not enough. 

I was recently listening to the Influencer Podcast and heard one of the guests say that her favorite quote is, "happiness is not a destination." And it was in that moment, driving to Just Poochy to have Luna groomed, that my perspective shifted. 
I had been feeling pretty sorry for myself. I can visualize so clearly where I want my life to go, but I feel like I can't quite get there.
But, praise God, "there" is not where happiness lies!
Happiness is in the journey.
Happiness is found in the mundane, everyday moments of life. In the Saturday mornings curled up on the couch with my husband, pup, and a cup of strong coffee. In a day spent on the beach with my favorite book. In a night out with friends I haven't seen in a while. 

So, even though I will still get frustrated with some of the curveballs this life throws at me, I'm remembering that happiness is not a destination. It's the journey. I'm choosing happiness. I'm choosing to love the journey. Life's too short to live it feeling sad all the time. 

Furthermore, I believe that this life is only a blip on the radar; that it is, "like the morning fog—it’s here a little while, then it’s gone" (James 14:4). I firmly believe that I've been saved by my faith in Christ, and that I will spend eternity with Him in Heaven. So, if I'm certain about the happiness that I'll be experiencing in the hereafter, why be concerned about my happiness on this earth?
The American Dream isn't all it's cracked up to be, and it will never trump God's Eternal Promise.

If you've been feeling stuck in a rut like me, I hope these thoughts have encouraged you in some way. I would love to hear from you in the comments section below. 

I hope you all have a great week!
Choose to enjoy the journey! That is truly living your best life.