by Jillian on August 7, 2012 · 41 comments

I’ve always been the type of person to play it safe. I follow the rules and rarely step out of line, especially in a setting where superiors are watching. Maybe that’s why the last 7 months of my life have felt so…wrong.

The reality is that it’s not wrong, it’s just change.

Last night after reading Ashley’s post, I began to think about how I have become better at adapting to change. I used to hate it. I’ve gone through so many stages in my life, as most people do, and you never realize that one chapter is over until your halfway through the next.

Eight years ago I was packing up to move to Bloomsburg, PA to study accounting.


Seven years ago, I moved to New York City to attend the Fashion Institute of Technology, after I had left Bloomsburg and worked full time at a deli until the following school year. New York City felt so surreal to me.


Six years ago I was living in an apartment on the Lower East Side with my best friend that I’d met at FIT.


Five years ago, I moved to Hoboken, where I lived in an apartment with my friend Kristina from my hometown.


Four years ago, I was working at a boutique in Hoboken that changed my life and brought me some of the best friendships.


Three years ago, I graduated from the Fashion Institute of Technology. with a degree in Fashion Merchandising Management.


…and met Joe.


Two years ago, I was working for Toys R Us Corporate as a planner and moved in with Joe.


One point five years ago, I started this blog, which led me to begin studying to be a personal trainer.


Fashion notebook next to the study guide. Ironic?

One year ago, I was sitting at this desk working as an Assistant Buyer for Saks Fifth Avenue.


This picture actually gives me the chills, because it’s the last day I was there, right after I had packed up and was about to leave the building for the last time.

Six months ago, I started working at Joe’s restaurant part time while studying.


One month ago, I got certified to be a personal trainer.


Everyday for the last 7 months, I’ve wondered what I was doing. I felt like I made a huge mistake and that I should have just stayed at that desk and continued my career path.

But then I think about all of the opportunities I’ve had from my blog. I think about all of the things I want to knock off of my fitness bucket list.

One week ago, I was offered a personal training job at one of the best gyms in America, as voted by Fitness Magazine.


All of the changes that have occurred in the last 8 years of my life brought me to this moment. I live with the love of my life and finally found the career that I am passionate about, in and out of work. As confusing as it was to get here, I wouldn’t have made it if I didn’t embrace change. I could be an accountant back in Pennsylvania. I could be living in NYC, never having met Joe. I could still be sitting at that desk at Saks.

I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.

{ 40 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Lindsay @ Lindsay's List August 7, 2012 at 2:30 pm

WOW!!! I’m so excited for this new adventure!! You deserve only the best, Jillian!


2 Jillian August 7, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Thank you Linsday! :) That means a lot!


3 Jillian August 7, 2012 at 2:59 pm

and I couldn’t even be generous enough to spell your name right. Lindsay******


4 Caroline August 7, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Congrats on your new beginning!! I can relate so much to this post. I used to hate change and now it seems like the only thing I can rely on is that things will change. But I’ve come to realize that change isn’t so bad after all :)


5 Alyssa August 7, 2012 at 2:38 pm

How have our paths never crossed?!?!?! Seriously. A) We both lived in Hoboken. B) YOU WORKED AT JESSIE JAMES?!??!?! My best friend and I cried when they closed that store down. IT WAS THE BEST and I still go to the one in the city all of the time! I literally was there once a week blowing money I didn’t have. AHH! C) I work with Saks all of the time!!!!!!!

I’m literally mad that it’s taken us this long to find each other. :)


6 Jillian August 7, 2012 at 2:57 pm

Hahaha that is soo super weird! Well since the world is not on our side, we will have to setup a little date in Hoboken!


7 Alyssa August 7, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Yes please! I live right behind Jessie James (I can see it from my bedroom) so you know where to find me. :)


8 Jillian August 7, 2012 at 3:01 pm

Craziness, I used to live 2 doors down from Jessie James. There is no way that I haven’t seen you before and just didn’t know you. lol.


9 Marilyn August 7, 2012 at 2:44 pm

Great post! I hope the future treats you well! xoxo


10 Steph @ StephSnacks August 7, 2012 at 2:50 pm

What a beautiful post! I can completely relate to some of the things you have wrote here. I graduated from FIT a little over two years ago and started my journey in the Cosmetic Industry immediately upon graduation. I love being in cosmetics and fashion but felt I needed to open up to the world of nutrition and healthy living so I started StephSnacks. Congrats on all of your accomplishments and successes!


11 Jillian August 7, 2012 at 2:58 pm

Thanks Steph! I didn’t realize you went to FIT! Posting this today made me miss it a little bit – especially when I looked at that picture.


12 Shanna, like Banana August 7, 2012 at 3:09 pm

What a grat post — I really liked this chronical of your last several years =)

And CONGRATS on that job — now I want to know where it is.

You rock girl!


13 Paige @ Your Trainer Paige August 7, 2012 at 3:13 pm

LOVE this post, Jillian :) And CONGRATS on the job! That’s so super exciting – I’m so happy for you!


14 Maureen August 7, 2012 at 3:19 pm

WOW!! So many changes! :) Good luck with the newest change…you’ll be amazing! :)


15 Lisa August 7, 2012 at 3:26 pm

Congrats! That is so exciting! You’ve gone through so much during this journey and that is so awesome you’ve found your passion!
Excited for you!


16 Danielle @ Clean food Creative Fitness August 7, 2012 at 3:53 pm

Congratulations!!!!! So happy for you that you are chasing your dreams and following your passion! I love to hear of stories like this! I’m sure you have nothing but great success in your future!


17 Alysha @Shesontherun August 7, 2012 at 4:10 pm

Congrats, girl! You have led such an interesting life, taken chances and just gone for it. So inspiring!


18 Michelle@Peachy Palate August 7, 2012 at 4:39 pm

Very inspirational post! I’m currently trying to decide whether to leave my job and study nutritional therapy whilst working part time somewhere…I need to decide this week…I need to take more risks as I’m not a risk taker either and seeing others like yourself who have taken that leap of faith are really spurring me on to follow my dreams!


19 Katie @ August 7, 2012 at 5:28 pm

Wow! How exciting & motivating! What a journey & I love the perspective of how it all allowed you to get where you are today! I myself am thinking of “changes” in the near future & try to realize that everything is part of the journey along the way! Thanks for sharing :)


20 Suzanne @ Fit Minded Mom August 7, 2012 at 6:31 pm

Sometimes we make choices not knowing if they are the right ones but it looks like in this case, they were definitely the right choices for YOU!! Congrats on the personal training job, from the sounds of it, it is very well deserved!!

And I would say, you seem to be a much bigger risk taker than you think you are:-)


21 Katie @ Livehalffull August 7, 2012 at 7:15 pm

Congrats! Isn’t it amazing how things fall into place after the scary path to change? I’ve loved following your journey and I can’t wait to hear about the next stage!


22 Dede August 7, 2012 at 7:34 pm


I have always had a really hard time with change. You are an inspiration!


23 Danielle Davi August 7, 2012 at 7:50 pm

Yayyyy for you on the PT news! That’s so great. Love the FIT pix, too. I think we had like one class together haha, but I love reading your blog! Crazy where you can end up after college right?! I’m working for Stephen Webster now in Soho and never would have thought I’d be there since graduation. Anyway, Congrats again and I look forward to hearingmore abt your new gig!


24 Diana August 7, 2012 at 8:28 pm

Thank you so much for this post- it is so awesome to see your ever-changing journey especially because I will be a senior in college this year and the big question to answer is “What are you going to do for the rest of your life?”. Its so reassuring to see that, more often than not, the path to finding what you truly want to do is intricate and multi-faceted and you need to just hang on enjoy the ride. You are a wonderful role model and thank you for sharing your successes thus far!


25 Stephanie August 7, 2012 at 8:36 pm

I’m so excited that I just stumbled upon your blog! I’m currently a student at IIN and will be fully certified by March. And just like you, I’m becoming a personal trainer. I should be certified by December. Your journey of changes assures me that I’m on the right path to finally finding something I’m passionate about. This could not have come at a better time for me since I’ve been struggling with decisions lately. Thank you so much! I haven’t seen much of your blog yet, but so far I love what I see.


26 Lauren August 7, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Jillian you have no idea what this post meant to me at this very moment. I sit here in tears. You have just moved me more than you will ever know. I love you girl!


27 Katie Cummings August 7, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Congratulations! I’m making a few changes in my life right now and am so glad to see that other people have made changes without exactly knowing where it was all going.


28 Katie @ Talk Less, Say More August 7, 2012 at 9:47 pm

Congrats girl! You deserve all the good things that have come your way and more. I’m looking forward to starting my journey to personal training in the coming months! :)


29 Sam @ Better With Sprinkles August 7, 2012 at 10:03 pm

Congrats on your new job!

I know we all struggle with wondering whether or not we made the right decisions in life regarding education/work – this is a good sign that you’ve definitely made all the right ones!


30 Ashley @ Freckles and Spice August 8, 2012 at 8:22 am

I smiled all the way through this post! I’m so happy for you and love that you are happy with the big changes your life made.
So happy we met!!! I will come out to NJ one time so you don’t have to battle the city, deal??


31 Jillian August 8, 2012 at 11:19 am

Yes -definitely! So good to see you!


32 Courtney @ Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life August 8, 2012 at 11:35 am

Awwww, CONGRATS to you, Jill!!! This was such a great post :)
I’m so happy for you and I wish you the absolute best!!

And if that’s an actual pic of the gym you’ll be working in…well, I’m SUPER jealous ;)


33 Jillian August 8, 2012 at 11:58 am

Thanks so much Courtney! The gym is not finished being built yet so it’s some sort of rendering! :)


34 CJ @ August 8, 2012 at 11:52 am

I absolutely needed this post. I need to make some changes in my life and it is often hard to make the leap and get over the fear. Obviously the changes you have made impacted your life in such a positive way! thanks for reminding me that change is NOT necessarily a bad thing :-)


35 Jillian August 8, 2012 at 12:00 pm

Glad that I was able to give you a little boost! :)


36 Claire (Jill's BFF) August 9, 2012 at 1:07 am

I just got sooooo choked up reading this and thinking back on your path to today. You’ve changed my life for the better just by being you. You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be and I’m so proud of you! Congratulations Jilly! Love you!


37 Caitlin August 9, 2012 at 7:56 am

Congrats!! I am so so happy for you. I totally relate to this post and hearing your experience gives me hope that the next year will be a good change for me :)


38 Irina @ Chocolatea Time August 9, 2012 at 10:12 pm

So happy to see that you are exactly where you need to be in life…congrats!!!! Not many people are lucky enough to be where you are now :)

I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Things always have an interesting way of working themselves out.


39 JT @ The Faux Foodie Girl August 10, 2012 at 9:40 pm

Congrats on your new adventure!! It’s so brave of you to make these big changes….


40 Juliette @ Finish Your Broccoli August 13, 2012 at 3:57 pm

So amazing! Isn’t it crazy how all of these moments and risks and choices add up to where we are today? Some are out of our control and in some are very deliberate. I dealt with change this summer when I lost my job and found an opportunity that was right under my nose–and it’s the first job that I feel like my opinions and expertise are valued. Congratulations on your new opportunity! And here’s to always allowing for discovery and intuition to shine through!


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