What’s Your Tipping Point?

“What is your tipping point?”

Years ago, a friend posed this question to me when I was going through a particularly challenging time.  In other words, he was asking me, “How much are you willing to put up with before you make a change?

I’ve always seen life as a hero’s journey, an adventure filled with great challenges and great joys.  It’s not the challenges that defines us, but how we act when facing them.  Do we run?  Tackle them head on?  Or wait to be rescued?  In the end, we all want to live happily ever after, with meaning, joy, health, and security.  Right?  I know I do!

When the negative outweighs the positive in our relationships, careers, or other aspects of life, it’s time to ask “What is my tipping point?  How much will I tolerate before I say ‘enough’?”

The particularly challenging time I faced all those years ago was an unhealthy relationship.  I had spent months trying to “fix it” alone.  He wasn’t going to be what I needed and I couldn’t make him.  The tipping point was the realization that the only thing I could change was me.  Was I willing to put up with his behavior or was I going to walk?  With clarity I saw that failure wasn’t in leaving the bad relationship; failure would be staying where I was crying more than I was smiling.   Ending it took immense courage and strength but proved I loved myself enough to rescue my Self, be the heroine in my own story.

Fast forward several years and the next big obstacle on my life’s journey was a career that was in conflict with everything I value and hold sacred.  It started out small, as many problems do, easy to dismiss as just a bad day or an isolated incident.  Then, the problem grew.  It was harder to ignore but the positive still outweighed the negative so I stayed.  It started to impact my life mentally and emotionally through worry, stress, and dread.  It affected me spiritually, compromising my principals and integrity but still I held on, thinking “It could be worse.”  And finally, because I ignored all of the warning signs, the Universe said, “Ok, Susan, I’ll get your attention with this!!” and I suffered physically- chest pains, insomnia, nausea, lowered immune system…  That was my tipping point.  I felt something powerful awaken in my Soul and I knew I had enough.  My health and well-being had to be the priority.

I resigned from public education in June of this year for reasons that could fill a book, not a blog post.  Suffice it to say that it took everything I have inside of me to make this leap of faith.  I was terrified to leave but more terrified of what would happen if I stayed.   Every aspect of my life has improved since making this decision- physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.

Calling it a “leap of faith” is an oversimplification.  It was a leap of faith based on intuition, intellect, and imagination.  And if I can do it, you can, too!!

So why am I sharing something so deeply personal on such a public platform?

For years, I’ve been leading women’s spirit circles, workshops, and Red Tents with the intention to celebrate, honor, empower, support, and awaken the authentic Self in each woman and girl who attends my events.  How can I continue this purposeful work if I’m not willing to celebrate, honor, empower, support, and awaken my own authentic Self?  In other words, I need to walk my talk and come from a place of knowing.  Otherwise, I’m a fraud and a hypocrite, and that’s not an option for me.

Reaching the tipping point and choosing to change is empowering and scary at the same time.  I know.  But I also know this… people don’t regret leaving bad situations.  They regret staying.  So when intuition says “You’ve reached your tipping point”, honor that still, small voice inside and take the leap of faith… faith in your Self.








7 thoughts on “What’s Your Tipping Point?

  1. Been there, done that 🙂
    Wasn’t in public education but working as a therapist in a hospital. Things got bad, then they got worse…until I finally started having breathing problems. Nothing physical but triggered by emotions. THEN I knew it was time to go – the tipping point.
    By that time (luckily) I had other – though not as “secure” – options and so the leap of faith wasn’t such a big leap.
    I currently see myself going down a similar path. Things aren’t that bad as they were back then (not even remotely) but it sure feels like I need to leap. This is inspiring.
    Nice post, thank you so much!

    • Thank you so much for your feedback. I’m glad the post resonated with you and I’m also glad things aren’t as bad as they were before. Sometimes, we need a leap anyway… it’s as if our lives are shoes that are two sizes too small and we need to wear something else. It might not be a drastic change but we need the change nonetheless. I wish you well every step of your journey.

  2. thanks for sharing =) i think we all need to ask ourselves whether we want to hold on any longer or just want to get out and start anew! =)

    • Exactly! And there is no time like the present. I was complaining to a friend that I was too old to make a drastic life change and she laughed, saying “Isn’t it better to take the leap and change at 48 then to look back with regret at 58?” I’m blessed to be around wise, encouraging, supportive people. They motivate me to be my best Self.

    • Thanks so much for reblogging this Barbara. I wish I could remember who said that life is not a dress rehearsal…they made a point that has resonated with me ever since. We have to make the best of this life… for ourselves and every being around us. Just think how the world could be!!

  3. Susan,, thanks so much for sharing your story that will resonate with so many other people who daily play themselves ‘small’ in order to live….I really appreciate the way you write that is so personal and yet so insightful! Thanks again! Have an awesome life….after all…you deserve the very best! Many Blessings, Hugs, Barbara xxxxx

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