A Square Peg Finds Her Mission
I wondered what she meant when she said, “Well aren’t you just living your best life ever?”
Honestly, I was like — WHO is she talking to?
Surely not me. I had absolutely NO idea what I was doing, or where I was headed.
And while I was comforted by the confidence she afforded me in the moment, I also knew it was horseshit. What she saw vs. the reality that was currently my life were two different things entirely.
Less than a month prior, I left my corporate job. A job that others looked at from the outside and envied. I was the leader of a big team, the top dog, the boss lady, the doer of all the things and the marketing voice of a formidable brand. As a professional, I was climbing the ladder in the way that everyone expected, myself included.
If I’m being honest, I also felt like a square peg in a round hole. My voice was always a little louder than others. Sometimes people took that the wrong way, while other times it got me ahead. Not because of force, but because of courage. And yet that bold only got me so far, and didn’t make me all that happy. I was out of whack after giving all I had and not yet seeing the return that I felt was supposed to show up as some form of bliss that I hadn’t yet realized.
And yet, the type A rule follower in me had found solace in the order and goal setting world that is Fortune 500 organizations. In my 20+ years in that world, I’d achieved formidable success, been promoted (again and again), became a go-to for the C-Suite, earned awards and rewards, and made great (but not equitable, btw) compensation and bonuses. The corporate dog and pony show served me well – until it didn’t.
And so I quit.
My brilliant plan? To open a cheese store. After all, cheese was an enormous passion. Combined with my growing expertise in the space and marketplace talents it all seemed to make perfect sense. Turns out, I was wrong. Opening a retail cheese store would be more about food law than cheese. And I wanted nothing to do with that. And so I pivoted.
I did some consulting gigs. I read. I watched. I networked. Heavily. I uncovered answers to questions I was curious about and created new ones. All along, I kept running into women whose stories sounded eerily familiar to mine. They too were done. Their restlessness was getting to them. They wanted more, but didn’t know what more looked like or where the hell to start. Welcome to the family, I thought.
So I did what comes naturally to me. I fired up my superpower and put us all in a room together (o.k., we went to happy hour!) to talk about this problem. I knew in my heart they were so very much alike. Overachievers. GenXers. Doer of all the things. Contributors to their communities. Successful leaders. Women of crazy high expectations. Go-getters thru and thru. I knew we should all be connected - I just didn’t yet know why.
As we talked, all of the common frustrations poured out. We liked our “big” jobs for a really, really long time. In fact, we loved them. It made us feel valuable, special, worthy. Our identities were wrapped up in our work. But it came at the sacrifice of honest happiness. We always had a dirty little secret: If I knew how to get off this gerbil wheel, I’d do it in an instant. There were other things we wanted to do. But we felt stuck with the lane we’d picked, and the life -- and to be honest, the income -- built around it. And so we kept going. And kept going. Always achieving; always doing the “right” thing.
But now we were done: Ready to exercise the right to leave that path behind. To change. To question. To redirect. To say goodbye and forget that shit.
Fast forward to March 11th, 2020. On that day, these powerhouse personas convened along with 40 other like women in our lives. If you were in the room with us, you found energy, spirit, and bad-assery in the form of Directors, VPs, CHROs and CMOs, all annoyed by the walls others kept putting up that were blocking change. Not to mention shared frustration with the pre-imposed, ladder-climbing expectations --upwards only! -- and the societal markers of success we were all very simply tired of dealing with. Why after all of this time, energy and effort, won’t others let us -- help us! -- do what WE wanted to do? We had had enough. And we were bound and determined to do something about it.
Since that first time meetup, we’ve kicked things up a bit. We’ve held formal classes, pop-up events, and more than 18 virtual happy hours where we pair wine with work -- the work of identifying what truly lights us up, and sussing out how to use that knowledge to drive change. We have worked with more than 180 women in over 10 different states and formed an organization, Ready. Set. Pivot., to put the world on notice: the best talent is restless. It’s the sort of restless some naively identify as mid-life crisis-ish. No we say, it’s more than that. It’s the need for urgency fueled by the desire to get to doing what we want to do for the first time in our lives. On our terms.
RSP guides bold, unapologetic women to their next best thing through experiences designed to get them there – faster.
Why faster? Because honestly, we’re already out of time. We’ve wasted a lot of it doing what we were supposed to. Waiting until retirement is for other generations. And quite honestly, the idea of waiting to get on with what really matters to us just seems stupid.
We’re moving the timeline up.
That’s why RSP exists. To propel you forward faster so you can get from point A to point B in the very same efficient, expedient, meaningful and challenging way you’ve been leading others to achieve their goals all of your damn life. We’ll remind you of your innate loves and talents so you can leverage the ones that made you amazing in the chapter you’re ready to shut the door on–and be happier in your new one.
This square peg has found her mission. To ensure the planet sees your brilliance. Brilliance that was created as a result of the world we were raised in, sure, but that no longer demands that it only pays off by moving up a predetermined ladder. To that we say bullshit.
So to that friend those many months ago who said I was living my best life? Today I am. By helping others get there, too. I’m welcoming and inviting all of the square-peg-round-hole, kick-ass, overachieving, GenX women to a new table. One that’s been set just for you by your peers. One designed to move YOUR list forward FIRST. sitting among others who applaud your decision to create your own rules, your own scorecard.
And we’re not going to wait patiently for the perfect time any longer. The time for change is now. We’re not just moving forward, we’re having the time of our lives. We’re finding our next best thing. We’re RSP.