You may think you’ve had your life path figured out years ago. But according to experts, nothing’s ever set in stone. Even your planned trajectory can change. In fact, there is a chance that you may be on the wrong path right now. So if you’ve been feeling stuck or unhappy with the state of things, experts say you may now be on the wrong life path.
As spiritual counselor Davida Rappaport, tells Bustle, there are many ideas out there about what a life path is. “But in my experience, your day-to-day life is your life path,” she says. “When life provides you with a roadblock, or you sense something isn’t right, you may need to change direction, or take a detour in order to determine what is the next ‘right path’ for you to travel.”
According to Rappaport there’s really no fast and easy way to figure out if you’re on the right path right now. If you’re good with how things are, you’re likely on the right path. “Once you realize you are not happy, stressed beyond reason, or need to change direction, you will realize that the path you are on is no longer the right path,” she says. So here are some signs you may have to change course, according to experts.
1You Trust Everyone More Than You Trust Yourself
“When we’re on the right path, we trust our inner voice and have that distinct ‘knowing’ that we are doing the right thing,” success life coach, Jackie Chan, tells Bustle. “We hold faith and trust in our own decisions.” When you start second-guessing yourself, becoming more indecisive, or start valuing the opinions of others over your own, those are major signs that you’re going off course. According to Chan, this means you’re losing a connection to your inner voice. “The worst part of this is that when this happens, we tend to ask many people around us (ones that matter or don’t) and then we get more confused and feel more disconnected,” she says.
2You Think Discovering Your Life Path Means You’ll Stay On That Path Forever
“People often mistake that once we go through this transformation to get to the right path, that that’s it and we are good,” Chan says. But the truth is, falling off the “right” path will happen over and over again. It’s all part of our journey. “We don’t evolve or grow just once,” she says. “We go through the different levels of the journey and always come out in a different position than we started, as long as we put the work into it.” So if you feel like you’re content or “comfortable” with how things are and you’re not seeing any growth or forward movement in your life, you may now be on the wrong life path.
3You’re Comparing Yourself To Others
Being on the right life path means you’re focused on you and the goals you’ve set out for yourself. You’re not worried about what your friend is doing or why you haven’t reached a certain level of success yet. As Kyle Elliott, MPA, CHES, career and life coach behind CaffeinatedKyle.com, tells Bustle, “If you’re happy with your life and your successes, you won’t need to compare yourself to anyone else.”
4You’re Always Asking Yourself, “Why Me”?
“One sign that you’re not on the right life path is that you have simply stopped asking yourself the right questions,” Linda Shesto, founder and CEO of Calm and Centered Consulting, tells Bustle. “Instead of a child-like characteristic of exploring this experience called life, a person starts to only self-speak negatively to themselves.” In other words, you fall into negative self-talk a lot. Why isn’t this working? When will I finally get a break? Why do bad things always happen to me?
According to Shesto, these are all the wrong questions you should be asking. Instead, you should be asking yourself questions that will put you back on the right path, like what went wrong here and what can I do to improve? “Asking questions is easy at times, but asking the right questions is one of the keys to a life filled with purpose, alignment and joy,” she says.
5You’re Repeating Affirmations That You Don’t Truly Believe In
Repeating positive affirmations daily can help you in the right mindset to go after the life you want. However, if you’re trying to manifest good things but you hold a lot of doubt as to whether or not it will happen, you’re putting yourself on the wrong path. “There is a very fine line between delusion and the power of the law of attraction,” Chan says. “We cannot simply live faking things or saying something is going to happen just to say it. These are often empty sayings which have no heart.” If you want to utilize the law of attraction, it’s important give it your all and believe that the good things you want in your life can manifest.
6You’re Burnt Out
It’s possible to burn out when you love what you’re doing. But according to Elliott, it’s a lot more common when our path is “misaligned.” You’re also less likely to power through a burn out.
7You Have Trouble Describing Your Passion
What are you passionate about? If you have trouble defining it or you can’t think of anything at all, you may be on the wrong life path. According to Elliott, “Being able to communicate your passion is a first step toward being on the right path.” In other words, you can’t really get on the “right” path until you know where you want to go.
8You Wake Up Each Morning Dreading The Day Ahead
If you find that you keep getting sick or wanting to avoid people, certain situations, or going to work, your body is telling you that something is off. “If your job is making you ill, stop a moment and decide if you like the work you are doing, but the company and/or people or environment are not healthy for you,” Rappaport says. “Maybe it’s the right career, but the wrong place.” Even a simple change of scenery can put you on a different path.
9You Got Fired
Losing a job or getting dumped by the love of your life can turn your entire world upside down. But according to Rappaport, these events can be the “universe’s way of telling you that you no longer belong there and the path you were on is closed to you.” The best part is, these are great opportunities for you to change direction. “When one door closes, you have a chance to find or open another open door,” she says. “View this as a gift that will put you where you should be next.”
10You’re Afraid Of Change
Major change is scary. It’s why leaving a job that’s no longer pushing you to grow or leaving an unhealthy relationship is never easy. According to Rappaport, when that fear rises up, it’s a strong indicator that you’re on the wrong path. “Take the time to figure out an exit plan that will make you feel powerful and empowered,” she says. You need to leave the wrong path if want to be on the right one.
11You Don’t Feel Like You’re Good Enough
If someone makes you feel inadequate or less than for any reason, this is a sign that you need to leave. Being on the right path means feeling good with who you are and the decisions you make. “Anytime someone does not appreciate you and your contributions, this is a sign that you need to move on and find another path,” Rappaport says.
12You’re Chasing Opportunities Vs. Receiving Them
There’s nothing wrong with putting in the effort to get what you want. But there is a fine line between working hard and forcing things to happen. “It’s not that we don’t put the effort in towards getting those things, but the things that are most intentional, or, ‘on purpose’ tend to present themselves,” Ali Boone, lifestyle designer and spiritual psychologist, tells Bustle. “While there are instances that require you to really chase something in order to find that ‘right’ path, I’ve rarely seen someone have to constantly chase the ‘right’ path.”
13There’s A Lack Of Joy In Your Life
When you feel loved, accomplished, and appreciated, you feel good. That’s what being on the right path should make you feel. You’ll have a sense of fulfillment. “At the end of the day, we have one life,” Boone says. “If joy isn’t a part of that, what’s the point?” It’s safe to say, the wrong path will likely never bring you joy. Instead, you’ll feel stuck.
If you want to know what your “right” life path is, always trust your gut. Numerology, tarot, and astrology can help you out, if you’re into that. But it’s important to know that these aren’t necessary. According to Rappaport, these are all just “tools” that can provide you with information you can take in.
“Perhaps you already know what is the right road, but getting on it may take the form of other roads and/or detours,” Rappaport says. “Be comfortable with the process and the changes, and it will help you better know what ‘fits’ you best.”
The biggest thing to remember here is that your life isn’t set in stone. If the direction you’re going in now feels off or lackluster, you have the power to change it. So don’t think otherwise.