I came across this video of Oprah in my Facebook feed where she discusses the nature of no mistakes and no failures. Every detour is just that, a chance to change direction, a chance to take stock, to reboot, to listen. I found it apropos for New Year’s Day because it’s a lesson we all need to be reminded of as we face the resolutions and hopes that every new year brings.
A couple years ago I was facing a few mistakes and detours that I’m still wrestling with today. I had two amazing jobs and lost them both in the span of 3 months. In both instances they were television hosting jobs and in both instances I was replaced. And not to sound all victim-y or anything, but in both instances it wasn’t really my fault. But I know there were signs along the way that could have clued me in a bit sooner and may have helped me avoid some heartache and shame.
Essentially that’s what I mean when I say wrestling; I’m still contending with the emotional aspect of it all, the where-do-I-go-from-here part of it all. I’ve long since gotten past the disappointment of losing the specific jobs. I’m more or less past wanting those jobs to be something they weren’t. I knew then that I must focus on the future. I knew then to chant these mantras from Oprah’s bible of truths — truths we’ve been awakened to for years from Oprah, Maya Angelou, Deepak Chopra, even Dr. Phil . . . one of my favorite Dr. Phil-isms is, “You can’t always make the right decision, but you can always make the decision right” — no wrong paths, no mistakes, no such thing as failure, just detours, just wake up calls. But a wakeup call to what?! Therein lies the tricky part, figuring out in which new direction to go.
Initially, I bounced back pretty brilliantly actually by landing a sitcom pilot starring opposite David Koechner and also going back into Chicago on Broadway. My friend Jill joked with me, “That’s our girl, Paige. Her default setting is Broadway.” I was so happy. I thought I was back on track. But when my contract on Broadway came to it’s end and the pilot wasn’t picked up, I was left with this vacant feeling of not knowing what my “next right move” would be.
So, as much as I love hosting, and I do, I tried to glimmer meaning from the initial blessings in my lap. Perhaps the return to Broadway and booking the sitcom pilot were nudging me to return to my original career goal of acting. So, for the past year that’s where my focus has been. I did a play this summer, one that will be remounted this January in Connecticut and then brought to New York in the spring/summer. I shot an independent film this month. Ya know, I keep chugging along. And who knows when it will all change course once more.
And that’s the ticket. It’s not simply knowing these lessons that our teachers are bestowing, it’s realizing you have to apply them over and over and over. Detours, mistakes, and failures will continue to happen. Just because you re-route yourself once, doesn’t mean you won’t have to recalculate again and again and again. As Oprah says, “Don’t allow yourself to be thrown.” Just make a turn, get back on track — or even pick a new direction — but keep on going.
May all your losses be wake up calls. May all your downs springboard you up. And may all your detours guide you right where you belong. I wish you a happy, healthy 2015.
Wow…I really needed to read this. I too have been experiencing some career struggles and find myself unemployed once again. Now is the time to refocus and recharge myself for the next opportunity that I’m sure will be much better than the last. Here’s to a brighter and prosperous 2015!
Paige — I’ve always loved your optimism. It’s not easy, in fact sometimes this stuff is #*%^*@! HARD. But What’s the alternative? Drowning in our tears? Not good for long… makes eyes puffy, and THEN where are we? 😉
I appreciate you. Here’s to an AMAZING banner year. Let’s fly, and if necessary, adjust, and then fly some more! xoxo
Guuuuurrrrlllll!!!!! This is so right on! I thought I had it all together and then…well…then I didn’t. After working for 20 years for a company in an industry that I loved doing a job that I loved AND being relocated by said company to a new state which meant I had to relocate my kids as well…they, rather unceremoniously, laid me off. See ya! Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out! And BTW, bring your credentials and laptop into the main office within 24 hours or we’ll send the police. Wow…really?
But here’s the thing, I had spent my entire life believing that there ARE no mistakes, no coincidences, no luck. I believed (and still do) that all things happen for a reason and that I should just keep my heart open and let the universe guide me…which works really well when it’s happening to someone else but is really difficult when it’s happening to you.
It’s been 6 years since that lay off and I have landed on my feet and, just like I thought, I’m happier than I’ve been in years with my career and where it’s going.
So here’s to a new year filled with possibilities and universal truths. And here’s to keeping our hearts, minds and eyes open to those possibilities.
I adore you. I just read your response outloud to my family and friends who all hanging out with me right now.
It made us laugh and we all agreed you really captured EXACTLY how we all feel.
” . . . when it’s happening to someone else.” LOL. Brilliant.
We all love you. Hahahahah!
I love it!
You know I have been thrown by the circumstances that came my way 16 years ago that I haven’t been able to shake. I thought I was doing a good deed and it went horribly wrong. I was held hostage at knifepoint for 8 hours, beaten to within an inch of my life, and raped repeatedly on New Year’s Eve because a friend of my girlfriend wanted to be the man to be the one who turned me straight. This year I have tried to turn the tides, but its hard. Especially the days after New Year’s. Even my service dog won’t leave my side. I love you Paige, and I love your wonderful adages about living life differently. I’m trying. And hopefully I can keep trying.
Oh, Megan — I’m sorry to hear about such a tragic event in your life. That is truly horrific and scary. Certainly Oprah-style musings plagiarized in a blog are not going to sooth the haunting pain that would be generated from such a difficult circumstance.
I do hope you’ve been able to talk to a therapist over these years.
My heart goes out to you. And if my words have brought you slight comfort or understanding, I am deeply moved to know it.
Thank you Paige. I’m with a therapist now, but I don’t know how to ask for help. The first two blamed it on me. My friends, including the girlfriend who set me up with him, laughed at me because I am always supposed to be the protector but I couldn’t protect myself. Now when it gets around that time of year, I shave my head so no one can touch my hair to use it as a handle anymore, and the days after are hard to deal with. I don’t know how to explain it, it’s just like I am completely on edge and want to be locked in my room with my service dog. He knows. He’s literally on top of me for about a week. I need to figure out how to ask for help. What do I do?
And THIS, my dear friend, is why I adore you so much. I love your perspective, your outlook and your spirit.
You’ve inspired my next blog!!
I’ve always felt that life was much like a river…you ride along, sometimes navigating rough waters, treacherous rapids and forks leading to the unknown. But it doesn’t matter where you go, it will always lead you to where you need to be. It’s more about how you ride through the rapids and how smoothly you navigate your way through the rough patches. If you try to fight the current, you still end up in same place, just more wear and tear on your spirit.
This is why I live as I do… take every day as it comes and navigate it as best I can.
That’s not to say I don’t enjoy taking the road less traveled. It is dirty, adventurous and full of thorns, rocks, trolls and mud. But the one thing I like about that road is it is the most FUN and ADVENTUROUS!
Have a FUN day my dear. I miss you.
What a wonderful analogy, Leslie! xox
I mentioned your name today as the perfect host for a particular TV show if they were interested in a female. I remember one of the jobs where you were replaced. I was sad to see you go. I was a Producer on that show and that was the worst experience of my life.
A quote came to mind as I read this post. Not sure who its by but it says, “Sometimes we’re forced in directions that we ought to have found for ourselves.” Looks like we’re both finding our way.
Lots of love and hugs to you on your journey.
I just saw your clip performing in the little black dress at one of the morning shows in New York. I was really pleasantly surprised at how talented you are. All I know of you is from the R.C. Willy commercials ( I live in a tiny town in Nevada) where you are a spokesperson. Your latest, with newly long hair and the lovely purple dress made my jaw hit the floor! You are magnificent looking! I googled you, and came to your website, where I now know more about your background and resume. I gotta tell you, I think you’re ready to zoom into stardom. So, when it all hits, please stay the sweet, humble gal that you are, and enjoy the fame and fortune, remembering those less fortunate along the way…. And you will be fulfilled in many dimensions you never dreamed even existed! I’m pulling for all your hard work and fortitude to pay off soon! It’s your time! You have a great husband, and a lot of supporting fans, talent and opportunity… It’s coming! And don’t be surprised if I take a road trip to see you live….. Cause I will! Remember me, I’m gonna take you up on that backstage invite! Heh heh! (Hopefully, I’m 67 years old!, and each day is a gift.) You go, Girl….
That was a very sweet note. It absolutely made my day.
Truth be told, Paige, I was so disappointed to see you leave one of those hosting shows, I don’t watch it anymore. You were the one who brought the love and light to the show. If they couldn’t see that then the show wasn’t good enough for you!! You have a certain inborn charm and vitality that is not found in everyone. I know you have moved on to bigger and better things, but just know that there are those of us who thought you made that show and it is the worse for your being gone. But I think God had better plans for you!
Thank you, Lynn. xox