When I Grow Up….

By age 30 I had ended one career and started another and still didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I thought success was finding a career path that provided relatively good income and room to move up – one already laid out with simple steps to move through – like a board game. I was discovering life hadn’t laid those steps out as neatly as I thought and it didn’t feel as successful as I thought it would.

Up until age 30, things had been appearing and I had been saying yes to them – somewhat blindly.  In 1992 I went to college because it was the next natural step to living a prosperous life.  In 1995, the US Army ROTC office at CSU Fresno called and offered me a full scholarship to complete my education and I said yes – with little thought.  I commissioned active duty and went off to be an Army officer.  I didn’t have a grand plan on what that would look like, but turned out to be pretty good at it.  I consistently did well and got great assignments as a result.

When I decided to leave, it was because I was getting the first rumblings from within: life was more than just a job.  I wanted a lifestyle different than the Army was providing.  In a bid to retain me, I was offered the opportunity to work with the most elite support command in the Army…still I had to go. The voice within was getting louder.

I went to a job fair and accepted a job in the Midwest with a utility company.  I joke that I accepted it in a fever induced haze – the product of contracting bronchitis while on a whirlwind interview tour across the US and being unable to go to any additional interviews.  My dogs and I moved to Iowa in February 2004 and I soon wondered when I’d be leaving.

It turned out it was here I’d settle on what I wanted to be when I grew up.  I’d discover life didn’t have to keep happening to me, I could create my life. I could develop a vision for the future and put it into action one step at a time.  Others were out walking their paths, sometimes lined up single file one after the other doing the same thing.  But me, I wanted to forge my way through on my own path.

I had this same mentality as a kid: I grew up in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.  My backyard was literally the Sierra National Forest.  One of my favorite things was to follow a trail for a bit, then strike out on my own – see what might be just beyond sight from the established path.  I often trekked up and down the creek behind our house finding new ways to get to different vantage points and finding fresh perspective.

This mindset came back to me as I began to question the path I was following others on after the birth of my son.  In 2007 he arrived 3 months prematurely and I was gifted time as I cared for him while he finished his development in the incubator in the NICU. I had time to consider my life.

I realized I needed a new vantage.  I needed to explore some alternate paths.  I needed fresh perspective on who I was and what I was doing.

I took some courses.  I read some new books.  I dabbled in different things.

For too long. I got seriously restless.

Then I got serious.  I hired a coach.

Hiring a coach gave me the path to clarity, accountability and commitment.  It also confirmed, yes, my life is more than my job.  I am here to live a full, rich, passion filled life and the routine to retirement gig wasn’t cutting it.

Are you asking, “what do I want to do with my life?” and taking free course or download after free course or download and not finding answers? A coach may be your answer.

If you are signing on for e-courses and not finishing them – you aren’t alone. I recently read upwards of 97% of people don’t finish them. (that fact isn’t verified, but I could see how it can be true).

Are you bored with life, or busy with bullshit?  Are you doing things that kinda suck? Are you doing them out of some sort of obligation anyway? You may need support to say yes to things that rock.

Hiring a coach gave me the courage to confront what I was really looking for in life and the confidence to take some action toward it. Now, 7 years later, I still have a coach.  My coaches have changed focus and people over the years, but I will always value coaching support and perspective.

If you know you are capable of more but feel restricted by external forces, a coach can help you develop the skills, attitudes and behaviors you need to free yourself.

And hey, I am a coach.  I might be able to help you like I have helped many others find the freedom they want – the freedom to be and live the way that really crave. It’d be super cool to have a conversation with you and see if it’s a good fit for where you are and what you want in life.

At a minimum, I can point you to some near-term actions and resources to find freedom if coaching with me isn’t right for you now – no worries.  I have told lots of coaches no along the way, it’s cool.

Your Challenge Now:

In your journal complete this sentence: When I Grow Up….

Then,  apply for a lackluster to limitless energizer session with me – let’s see if it’s a good fit for your initial foray into freedom.


photo jun 20, 8 27 31 am

Jennifer Murphy

I am a certified personal and executive coach ruthlessly focused on helping people live awesome lives.  I spent a large chunk of my life pursuing other people’s ideas of success and while those experiences were sublime in some cases, they weren’t the “more” I was seeking and I just never felt full. In 2011, I made the commitment to live life on my terms and everything changed. The life I love today was created.

I am founder of No Limits Life Empowerment Institute as well as a working glass artist, Reiki Master,  Partner in Shaman Grocer in Iowa City, and Co-founder of the Midwest Reiki Festival.    My favorite time is spent doing anything soccer related with my aspiring world cup soccer player, 10 year old Alexander.  I am also a pretty big fan of gaming (PS4) with my partner Craig while solving the world’s social problems.  email me at jennifer@nolimitslife.guru and share your story.


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