I would give it a 20/20
Many people are sharing their learnings of a challenging 2020 and wishes for the better future, and I have been on the fence about whether I want to add my 2 cents to it. During the last days of the year, I experienced an unexpected and completely overwhelming combined summary dump of all the feelings and emotions of my past 12 months, ever so gently reminding me of some of the not so easy sides of being me. As you have read until now, you must be a curious soul, which makes it already worthwhile sharing some of my experiences with you. Apart from that, I love being bold, to talk and write, and often find it hard to shut up, so why not be bold and go for it now.
I certainly lived one of my – if not the most challenging year concerning most areas that are important to me.
I unexpectedly lost the job I was so passionate about, concluding 7 years throughout which I had created a space in my life where I felt I belong, something that does not always come easy when living in and moving through different countries and social circles in the world.
I experienced the feeling of anxiety many of you must know too well when feeling pressured into joining online conversations about the future of my industry to stay relevant for future opportunities. I pivoted, practiced patience, and trusted in the abundance of the universe; got my hands dirty and worked in nature; challenged my belief of a 9-5-life that I had acquired and gotten used to throughout the last decade.
My trust and beliefs in love were challenged and questioned, and my carefully constructed structures of self-protection slowly taken down, enabling me to start investigating each piece of the puzzle and creating a healing strategy on the rocky road to unconditional love.
I physically challenged myself when moving to the big adventure playground of Robin’s land here in Portugal; I built stables, outdoor bathrooms, and gyms, chopped wood, ran up and down hills, dug in manure, grew a huge vegetable garden, took care of animals. I entered the world of martial arts and learnt to roll from Portugal’s best Jiu Jitsu master, Bruno.
Robin has created his life by following his intuitions, and by living close to him and hearing his stories I continuously remind me to stay connected to myself and be flexible.
I made a dream come true of going on a solo bike adventure and cycled 4000km across 5 countries and over 2 months to give myself space and time and satisfy my adventure seeking little voice that is always yelling for more. Throughout this adventure I practiced and increasingly enjoyed my writing.
I confronted my fear of commitment and built a platform and a cozy nest to finally call a place home again after almost 3 years of moving around, living in uncountable people’s homes, Airbnb’s, tents, hotels, and hostels in many countries around the world between my hometown Melbourne and my new home near Ericeira.
I met my new family; am living with children and animals that need love, energy and time, which I generously offer to them in the form of homecooked meals, cookies and cakes, dancing, singing and crafternoons, treasure hunts, walks and cuddle puddles; new friends that I feel so connected with I sometimes wonder whether we have known each other in some other life’s, have started growing roots to create a community of people who also seek to find happiness and a life in tune with their values.
I have dug into the meaning of taking responsibility and can now see much clearer what there is still to learn for me.
I am transforming to become a better observer, learning to shed the ego, and taking things less personal, to be humble and grateful for what I have, set boundaries, be kind to myself and all my weird and wonderful ticks, tricks, and traits. I have laughed and cried a lot, experienced moments of vulnerability, anxiety, disappointment, conflict, resentment, pain, exhaustion, fear, resilience, euphoria, joy, belonging, understanding, compassion, empowerment, and inspiration along the way.
Years ago, one of my idols, former employee and my Australian surrogate mum Marg told my prospective new boss during a job reference that I would be capable to take over and run the business I was applying to work for, as I have what it takes to achieve whatever I put my mind towards. I was flabbergasted and her words stuck with me. I tested her hypothesis over the next years and concluded that she must be right. Years later, my life coach Mat ended our last session with the request to ‘Think Big’. Years of self-development and living my life prepared me for all those things that were thrown at me in 2020. I am starting to really understand what he meant by it and am ready and excited to fully dive into this ‘Thinking Big’ now.
Why am I writing this?
Firstly, through reading my lines you hopefully understand that, assumingly just like you, I struggle and at times do not know what to do, am vulnerable, hurt, scared, and sometimes dependent. I always wanted to focus on ‘accepting and letting go’ - accepting those sides of me is also a part of the deal. It is human, and of course okay to feel not only the good stuff. I understand now that the people I have around me love me the way I am and forgive me for being human and so I can be forgiving towards myself, too.
Some people have said before that I am an inspiration to them. Who, me? I always felt foolish, a little ashamed and that you must be mistaking me with someone else. I have met so many people that are so much more inspiring, have achieved so much more, or lived so much greater adventures than me and I could not even get close to them.
Accept and let go, love and be kind to myself, didn’t I mention that earlier? Okay then - if you think I am an inspiration to you, I would like to thank you for your kind words and for believing in me and will happily continue to feed you with reasons to feel inspired, hoping that I can contribute to your cause and we can connect on some level in our lives!
Secondly, I am currently preparing a workshop called the ‘Business Plan of Life’. My aim is to provide young people with some tools on how to find out what is important to them in life, realize that there are many ways to live according to whatever that may be, and be able to design the path they choose to take themselves; being proactive and enjoying the ride, rather than just tagging along without a sense of purpose or direction. An even bigger achievement would be to create a feeling of empowerment to search or identify a life vision.
Throughout the last year and while preparing for this workshop, I started to see clearer what my motivation and vision has been. I have lived it for so many years, and all those things are important to me have always related to it: creating a sense of belonging and making others feel included; making commitments; curiosity and learning; contributing to and creating community and exploring, feeling, and giving love.
It is connecting people that drives me, with fun, love, and kindness. Learning about the different possibilities to design a life and sharing my knowledge and energy with others, so they may feel empowered to do something cool with their time. Showing others that all we need to find our way is already within us; and most importantly: if I can do it, so can everyone else.
In conclusion, considering all the challenges and changes of 2020, the fact that I am only talking about my personal experiences and as they say growth only happens out of the comfort zone, it turned out to be the best year of my life. I might not have started a cool jetsetter-job travelling the world further, could not return to Colombia, did not see all my friends or my family as much as I wanted back in Germany and could not return to Australia to finally join my friends at the music festival everyone speaks of year-in-year-out; regrettably missed my friend Maddy’s wedding in North India and therefore the opportunity to join a Yoga teacher training; had to forfeit an adventure marathon I had signed up for in my beloved Argentina and the dream to make this country a new home; cured a broken heart, and re-entered the world of financial insecurity. What I received in return was undeniably worth the bargain. I feel more in harmony and connected to myself, which the people around me can benefit from. I still have a lot to learn but know much better which path I want to take next and why; and this is a feeling no less exhilarating than breathing the cold Khumbu mountain air whilst glimpsing Mount Everest for the first time, diving next to playful seals in the Galapagos islands, jumping out of an airplane in New Zealand, or your first kiss. I am excited to wake up every day, so thankful for everything and everyone in my life am ready and open for what will happen next.
If you want to talk about what motivates you or think you can even contribute to my learning, please get in touch. If you just want to connect, do. If you want to work with me, drop me a line. Best of all, if you are in my area and want to meet for beer, coffee, wine, walk, run, bike ride, talk, always feel welcome to do so. Meeting in person and sharing moments, looking each other in the eyes, talking, touching, and laughing together are my favorite ways of connecting! Thank you very much for letting me share my journey and wishing you all the best for a new year full of optimism, positive energy, love and happiness!