Slowly I blink my eyes open and roll onto my side. I take a moment to gather my scrambled thoughts, “what is that whistling?” As it begins to increasingly grow louder I realize that I am ever-so-rudely being awakened by, not one, but two alarms going off (which I had ambitiously set earlier than I should have).
Surprisingly, I realize that I am not nearly as tired as I thought I would be, yet I still instinctively hit snooze for the next half hour refusing to leave my warm cozy bed ( I still end up getting up earlier than usual).
I lay there groggily staring at the wall as I slip in and out of a sleep that crashes into me and then recedes; pulsing like a wave to the beat of my alarm. Each time the wave of sleep recedes I am hit by a new wave: a wave of dread.
I dread going to work today.
I don’t dread it because I have a bad job. I dread it because I feel stuck in the middle of transition. In the midst of transition I often struggle to remain content without becoming complacent.
This job is not my “endgame”. I yearn for something more stimulating, more fulfilling, and more suited to my talents. I know this job is not a place for me to stay long-term – it is just a transition. It’s the middle ground.
In my zombie-like state I somehow manage my way out of my warm oasis and sleepily head towards the coffee pot. After what seems like an eternity later my coffee is finally ready. I wrap my hands around my cup like it is my lifeline. The warmth of the cup greets my hands and is soon descending down my throat, finalizing the waking process.
Despite the initial dread I had felt waking up this morning I now feel centered and content as I settle at my desk, coffee in hand. The quietness of an early morning is never lost on me. Despite absolutely despising waking up early, I really love being up before other people. There is a quiet peace that fills and fortifies me for the day.
I love having time completely alone to journal, write, meditate, pray, and read the bible each morning. It is in these early morning hours that I get ready to set out and conquer the day.
As I sit here I know that God has something really amazing in the works, I know this job won’t be where God has me at forever, I know I just have to wait for God’s perfect timing. I trust God to lead me through this middle land, but the middle—in my opinion—is the hardest place to be.
I have always liked mornings and evenings the most. I like the mornings for all the reasons I have already mentioned; you are full of energy, preparing for the day ahead, and usually refreshed. The task ahead is clear.
I like evenings because the day is done, you feel accomplished; I can reflect, decompress, and focus in a different way than in the morning. However, the middle of the day is where I start to feel distracted.
In the middle of the day I feel unfocused, I am not sure what will happen next, there is a lot left to do. This is similar to how I feel when I am in the middle of a transition. The middle is an uncertain place to be. When the uncertainty kicks in it can be easy to not only lose your focus, but also your motivation.
Let’s be real: it can also be so stinkin’ easy to become complacent in the middle. If you stay in the middle for too long you inevitably become comfortable. This comfortability can make moving forward daunting.
I truly do think that there are so many people just lingering in the middle—uncertain of how to move forward, paralyzed by indecision trying to decipher the exact right choice for their future. People end up wandering in circles in the middle land.
I know this was me. I wanted more but I was so (SO) scared of failure (honestly, I still struggle with this, just on a lesser scale). I thought it would just be easier to stay in the middle than to fail. But everyone fails, if you aren’t failing you aren’t moving forward or growing. Failing isn’t a bad thing. At least you are doing something.
Right now I am in the middle of a season of transition. It can be easy to decide to stay here and get comfortable, but I KNOW God has a bigger plan for me – I just have to keep participating. I can’t get complacent.
God has big things planned for each one of us, but we still have to participate. We cannot just sit back and do nothing while we wait.
We must do the work.
Our dreams have been placed within us for a reason. I believe if you have a dream, and you can confidently say that it is God-given and biblically sound, then you must work with it. This means making goals and working towards them intentionally. (I talked a bit about goals and discipline in “Rules and Regulations” if this is something you struggle with).
I understand how easy it can be to give-up, lose hope, and convince yourself that your dreams are silly. When we don’t see the end in sight we often convince ourselves that we were never on the right path to begin with.
In some situations this may be true. However, I believe that a lot of the time we actually were on the right path, or at least on the path to figuring it out. And then we get distracted by fear, with comparison, with things that instantly gratify us, etc. We get distracted by whatever it is, and then we end up like hamsters on a wheel, running but never actually going anywhere.
If you are struggling in a season of transition or being stuck in the middle, I want to encourage you just to keep pushing, keep striving, keep working. Don’t give up! If you feel something has been placed on your heart act on it. Dreaming is good, but eventually action is required.
Persevering builds the strength that you will need down the road.
Being in the middle does not mean being stuck. This middle land you feel like you are in will not be where you stay. Use this time to build in the areas you need to so that you are ready to move forward boldly.
This is something I have to remind myself of almost daily.
If you are struggling, like me, in a season of transition/ being in the middle, then maybe you are trying to figure out the balance of being content while still striving for more. I know I am. Transition is hard because you are grateful for where God has brought you from and everything he has given you, yet you know there is more.
The only advice I have if you are struggling trying to find this balance of contentment while striving for more, is to take it a day at a time, work on your goals a little everyday. Don’t get so caught up in the future that it distracts you from the now.
In the meantime, while we make our way through the middle land, I advise you to seek wisdom and guidance from God and trusted counsel. As Psalms 32:8 states, “ [God] will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; [God] will counsel you with [his] loving eye on you” and in Proverbs 15:22, “Without counsel, plans fail, but with many advisers, they succeed”.
You don’t have to do it alone, reach out for others to help you along the way! And keep on keeping on .