Anna Maria Locke

On life transitions, new beginnings, and rolling with the changes

August 2015Anna LockeComment
Good-bye, old apartment!

Good-bye, old apartment!

Last week Ben and I said farewell to our first official home together, the old walk-up apartment we've lived in since we moved to Chicago exactly three years ago.

So much can happen in three years!

Where do I even begin?

Well, right now I'm writing this post in my new office/workout room/studio in our new apartment in a different part of town. I have SPACE to breathe, to create, to feel inspired.

I never fully realized how important my environment is to my overall mental state and confidence until just this past year.

You see, our old apartment never really felt like "home" to me. It was just a crappy, crumbly, place we landed when we were just starting out here in the city. It was impossible to keep the dirt and dust at bay, our bedroom floors smelled like ancient cat pee, we only had one drawer in the kitchen, and our "second bedroom" was a closet shoved under the stairs.

Near the end of our lease, I started to finally appreciate the high ceilings, tiny little porch, and natural light, but it's easy to feel sentimental about a place when you know that you're about to leave.

I'm not trying to be negative, but it was really hard for me to find the positive. I visited my girlfriends and tried not to be jealous of their shiny kitchens, pretty decor, gorgeous views, and cozy spaces.

The truth is, I never had the confidence to take charge of my own home and believe it was worth some investment and love. I preferred to play "victim" and feel sorry for myself. I hate the critical and negative side of me who is bitter and jealous, but she ruled my life for much of the past several years. My inner and outer spaces reflected each other, and our apartment was part of my identity as a broke, struggling, under-employed, quarter life crisis girl who had no sense of direction or focused ambition.

A series of events in the winter between 2013 and 2014 flipped an ON switch deep in my core, and for the first time I started to realize that I actually had control over my life, how I felt, and what I did with my future.

I decided I was worth more. I decided to fight for my confidence and happiness. I started to share my story and my message on social media, and the rest is history, just like our old apartment on Melrose Street.

This year in particular, I've taken an intense dive deep into myself, because I know for certain that I am here on this earth to make a big difference and for the first time in my life I actually believe that I can do it. I've invested a lot of emotional energy, time, and money into personal development books, courses, and coaching to help me finally break through the stupid blocks that have been keeping me "stuck" and holding me back. The perfectionism, anxiety, and feeling of never being good enough. It's all gone, because I made a simple choice that I didn't want to feel bad about myself anymore.

So I came lightyears, but our crappy apartment stayed behind, no matter how many trips to IKEA we made to try and resuscitate it. 

I'm reaching this point in my coaching business where I can see myself growing into my full capacity as a guide and a leader, and for the first time ever I'm not scared or overwhelmed at the thought of being successful, of being seen, of having responsibility. But I still felt physically stuck in our old place, where so many old memories kept me connected to that old girl who was so insecure and controlled by fear. The fear of never feeling good enough. 

That fear is gone.

And I have now officially left it PHYSICALLY behind. Same mirror, same reflection, completely different game.

We now live in an absolutely beautiful space, in my dream neighborhood, with a dream kitchen that makes me giddy just to be in, and a back deck already strung with lights. 

Three years in the old apartment and it never felt like home. It only took one day in this new space to get that feeling I didn't even know I was craving. This is the place where all of my stagnant creativity and passion and dreams will explode into reality.

By up-leveling our living situation, I feel like I've up-leveled every single facet of my life.

I didn't expect to feel THIS happy just because of a simple move. And instead of feeling guilty or waiting for the "other shoe to drop," I'm just going to ride the high and soak it all in, because I'll never forget how far I've come to get to this place. I'm not going to diminish my joy, because if you're currently feeling stuck or working through your own story, I want to be able to show you that there is hope. You are capable of SO much, if you just keep putting one foot in front of the other and don't give up.

Is everything perfect? Of course not. And I know there are challenges ahead that I'll deal with when they come. But at a certain point, you have to shift your focus from everything that you still need to work on and improve, to everything that you already have. 

Right now, I have everything I ever wanted, and life is pretty damn good. 

xo Anna