"There are years that ask questions and years that answer." -- Zora Neale Hurston
I can't remember the first time I heard this quote, but I know it didn't resonate very much at the time. Today, however, it fully resonates and gives me pause. Today marks the start of the second half of 2014, a year that's been so unbelievable full, trying, fulfilling, unexpected, heartwarming, tear-inducing, and growth-prompting, and I can't help but reflect.
When I was 21 years old (at the start of my quarter-life crisis, completely lost and totally unhappy with every area of my life) I decided to "change my life" by my next birthday. I didn't know what I was doing, and I had no guidance at all. All I knew was things needed to change. Some constants over the years included starting my own business, finding my passions and purpose, being happier and healthier, having an amazing relationship, and getting financially stable.
For years I asked many questions.
Who am I really?
What am I here to do?
What's my passions and purpose?
How can I feel happier and more fulfilled?
Is this the right relationship for me?
What business should I start?
When I first started this journey, I asked myself one incredibly important and powerful question inspired by the book 20 Something, 20 Everything: What do I need to do, be, have, and change in order to be happy in every area of my life?
From there I tried different things, read so many self help and personal development books, hired mentors and coaches, experimented, failed, learned, cried, took a sledgehammer to it all more than once, started a few businesses... I asked question after question, desperately trying to find the answers.
I can't imagine what my life would be like if I had never stopped to ask or if I had never questioned my life, work, partners, and self. Without the years of questioning, there's no way to reach the years of answers.
Sitting where I am today, I can tell you that the years that answer are worth every painful, tear-soaked question.
Asking the questions is hard work, and it would have been easier to stop, settle into a life, relationship, and career that was "fine" and live out my days without all the frustration, confusion, and pain. But what kind of life would that be? As a coach, one thing I know for certain is the power of a good question. Questions that make you pause, dive deeper than you knew you could go, and challenge your beliefs and stories. Questions that guide you towards what truly fulfills you, as well as towards your truth. Questions that teach us what we're made of and challenge us to do and strive for better.
Questions are everything when it comes to building a life and business you love.
And when those answers start rolling in, when things start to really click for you, you'll look back on the days, weeks, months, and even years of struggle so fondly. Because without the lows we can't have the highs. The deeper we drop into the unknown and the further we allow ourselves to unravel, the more we grow our capacity for awesome, fulfilling, passionate, connected, and authentic living.
Reaching the years that answer is simple:
1) Ask questions, always.
Question everything. Why you like or don't like things and people, why you do what you do, what would make something more fulfilling, what truly lights you up, how you really feel about any given situation, what your intuition is guiding you to do, where you feel most alive and connected, and so on. Never stop questioning life. And while you're at it, never stop questioning your mentors and guides. You're the only person who knows what's right for you and who you're here to be, so trust that. Ask what resonates for you and discard the rest. Everyone's journey is unique and the only way to venture down the right path for you is to create it for yourself.
2) Trust in the process.
It's not always easy, this I know to be true, but it's always worth it. I wouldn't be where I am today in life, love, business, and everything else if I hadn't spent those many years asking the hard questions and doing the hard work. You'll never create the life and business you desire if you're not willing to do the work. Does it mean it has to suck, not necessarily, but it will certainly be uncomfortable and challenging at times. Trust in the unraveling. Trust in yourself and your intuition. Trust in the fact that you're always, always being supported and guided.
3) Get the support you need.
It took me eight years to get to where I am today, and while the process and journey takes time, it doesn't have to take as long as it did for me. Not even close. The thing is, I didn't know about the wonderful world of self help books (let alone coaches, programs, mentors and communities) until I was a few years into it. I was just following my intuition and trying things that felt right. While I encourage you to always follow your intuition first and foremost, you don't have to do it alone. There are so many resources for you out there that will accelerate the process. Also, I was stubborn when I started (I still am, but that's not the point) and refused to get help. I felt like if I read books or hired coaches I wasn't really doing it myself. The truth is, we can all probably do most of it ourselves by learning as we go, by why waste all that time? There are so many people out there who learned the long and hard way (myself included), who've created solutions to help you do it in a fraction of the time. Don't reinvent the wheel, just get the support you need so you can spend more time loving your life.
Take action now!
What's one question you can ask yourself to dive deeper into your desires, passions, purpose and intuition? Grab a journal and your favorite pen and explore that question. Start doing the work and get the support you need when you need it!
P.S. Speaking of support, through Friday, July 11 you can save 50 percent on an annual My Awesome Life Mastery membership as part of my 3 year business birthday bash! This year-long mastery group gives you complete access to my products and programs, monthly group coaching calls, a tribe of like-minded people on the same journey as you, and everything you need to build a life and business you love. And I do mean everything! Click here to learn more.
Stephenie Zamora is the founder of www.stepheniezamora.com, a full-service, life-purpose development, design and branding boutique and author of Awesome Life Tips. Through her Mastery program, she merges the worlds of personal development and branding to help men and women build passion-based lives and businesses they love. Click here to access her free Foundations for Unshakable Joy™ video training series and learn the unexpected trick to transforming your life with one single question!
For more by Stephenie Zamora, click here.