“I will tell you why we have these extraordinary minds and souls, Miss Whittaker,” he continued, as though he had not heard her. “We have them because there is a supreme intelligence in the universe, which wishes for communion with us. This supreme intelligence longs to be known. It calls out to us. It draws us close to its mystery, and grants us these remarkable minds, in order that we try to reach for it. It wants us to find it. It wants union with us, more than anything.”
― Elizabeth Gilbert, The Signature of All Things “–
While observing how the end of an era is slowly unfolding for Alma Whittaker, the main character from Gilbert’s notorious book, I find myself reflecting on existential questions. Couple of days before the arrival of 2020, writing down all my past lessons, preparing myself for a better year.
2019 has not only blessed me in so many ways, but brought me as well to my knees and left visible marks on my body and my soul.
To look back, is to uncover wounds and to look at myself in the most cornered and the most dreadful moments. The year that is leaving behind the woman I used to be, is filled with extremes and I can only now catch my breath for a while and look at it from a different perspective.
While I meditate on how things look like at the end of it, I can say that I am thankful for another year that has been granted to me.
While I have gone through changes that I am yet to adjust to, a settling feeling comforts me. Experiencing loss and change and come out in one piece is something I still attribute to the supernatural.
In my struggle to be a better human being, I can fall into desperation or raise to bliss in a matter of moments. Being observant of ones nature may have costed me not only people, but as well parts of me which I used to love. Nevertheless, great rewards come to those who are patient in their research.
In my years of sharing culture and experiences with people from such diverse background, I have understood that we, humans, at our core, we are not so different. We all strive for a level of comfort, reassurance, respect, love and a reason to conquer all these.
2019 was the year where I learned a lot of lessons, especially in my personal life. I wanted to share a few of those here in case it helps you fast-track the pain and get to the good.
- The Words will Judge you
We are not only our actions and our judgement, but also our words. All the words that we release will take their own shape and will return to us like a boomerang, creating a reality that might favor us or not.
Many have yet to understand that the word is not only an instrument that we use in order to communicate thoughts, emotions and to establish a connection, but they contain powers that will bring to existence the good or the bad, according to their nature and to their energy.
Words, just like emotions, have a world of their own, with colors, vibrations and movement. With a dramatic effect on how we interact with people and the decisions that we ultimately make, they change our relationships and influence our entire belief system.
Now, just think: How would you be speaking and what would you be listening to if you would know that these two actions can determine your entire life?
- The Only People with Perfect Lives are the Ones Who don’t Speak about Their Problems.
Too many of us buy into the illusion of Social Media. That is why I have significantly reduced my time utilizing it as a scale for my own achievements. Truth is, everyone has problems and there is a high possibility that when hearing about someone else’s turmoil, you would choose to live your problems over theirs.
One of the most frustrating thing for me is to see how a tool that was supposed to bring people closer and intermediate human relationships, has become the very motive for some to even have a relationship at all. I truly believe is time for us to get real and get out there and do something so significant and so absorbing that we forget to take a picture of it.
Life is not perfect!
I do know people whose lives seems like a fairy tale; I have been told many times that I seem to be living the dream but truth is: I am not. I cannot say that my life is not beautiful but it is far from perfect.
I have days when I feel like I couldn’t have possibly failed more than I already did. That all the bad decisions in the world were taken by me and that I have completely ruined my chances of ever feeling worthy again. When checking with my closest friends and hearing their stories, I understand that we are all going through problems, no matter what our Holiday Season album looks like.
Life is beautiful but it is tough as well. Including for those who seem to be living an everlasting romance.
- When Young, We Fight the System, When Older, We Become the System.
I never really believed that I will be the one to say this, but as I age, I feel like I am becoming more and more like the mob I used to lobby against. This feeling of mingling with others and being just like them is something that I have been running away from my entire life.
Being the unconventional served me a lot in the very young years and thanks to my wild nature, I have traveled as far as I could to gather stories worth writing.
Until this year. This year I have taken a new shape.
I suddenly felt that being like others is not all bad and I had a striking desire to settle down and to write my stories from a more secure spot. I will not say that I have lost my desire for thrill but I did gave up many old patters. Now I enjoy other things and that is completely OK for me.
What works for you is the best thing! Learning yourself and discovering what truly defines you at a certain stage in life is a blessing.
Change is something natural and I want to embrace it even if it’s scary to give up an old me.
Everyone who is doing anything unique and wonderful is probably terrified much of the time.
- Faith is a Direction Not a Destination.
Look, it has not been easy. I am yet to write about all my struggles(I am not a coward and never been but some things I am yet to share with the world). It takes a lot of preparation and self-love.
What I can tell you is that what kept me alive and sane is my Faith. My will to survive and to conquer my demons, has led me out of the most hollow places.
Out of all the things that one has to be armed with in life, is by far, Faith. The trust that we are not here to suffer but we are here to learn, explore and have a little fun. The inner, most warm feeling that we are loved and taken care of from beyond.
I wouldn’t say that it has been every day easy to just get loose and have faith that things will work out for me. Oh, it was anything but easy! But I made a commitment to myself to not give up and to lay myself in the hands of the divinity because not all I can master.
For all I know, I need God.
- Fear is The Root of All Evil.
Fear might be just as old as Earth. Deeply rooted in our genetic code, embedded in our daily actions, fear can make us its slave if we do not learn to govern it.
I guess I have been living with different types of fears in the last couple of years.
As an expat living in a conservative country, working for one of the top airlines in the world, I can tell you that all the luxury that surrounded me for years in a row, was only a façade for the emotional stress that I had to deal with at times. Surely, there were plenty of benefits but now that I am far away from there, I can see how fear has built mountains inside my chest and how this silent torture that transformed me, will take maybe year to heal.
Fear keeps you in the loudest stillness and it mutilates ones ability to develop new strategies, to maintain faith and to have a meaningful existence. When you fear, you can not possibly be yourself, but only some twisted version that may lack integrity, self-control and clarity.
If you dig deep enough, you may find out that what lays at the foundation of all your struggles is the fear of something. Instead of resisting all the time the feeling, learn yourself. Fight it not, but make it your friend.
Learn your fear. It is the only way you can start integrating healthy life habits and recovering the YOU that can manifest a new world.
- Talent Without Discipline Leads to Frustration.
It is not luck that makes us great, nor talent, nor skills. It is the ability of cumulating all these and programming yourself to perform every single day that one thing that you hope to master.
Take it from the world’s biggest procrastinator!
One more thing that I have observed about myself is that I would feel guilt whenever I would let the day pass without benefiting from it.
The problem is that my work was fruitless because it was not strategic. I was just doing small tasks that would make me feel accomplished without actually accomplishing something significant.
I just cannot stress how important it is to have a strategy. Else, you will end up consuming resources recklessly and you will feel frustrated because you will see little to no results.
Plans might not always work but planning is essential. You need a guide, a direction as the engine for everything that you want to achieve.
- Life isn’t Easy but it’s Worth Figuring Out.
“The world was designed and built to overwhelm and astonish”- Mary Ruefle
I always use this quote as a reminder whenever I feel overwhelmed.
I just feel that our generation is a little soft. We struggle to understand and accept the realities that surround us and expect a perpetual state of bliss in our lives. When we hit rock bottom, we become so disillusioned that we require a whole bunch of time to recover, if we recover at all.
I would say that one very important thing that this year has taught me is to appreciate whatever is given to me. If I can not change my circumstances, I better befriend them rather than despising an unexpected outcome. Surely, easy said than done but with practice it can be achieved.
Feeling grateful is an everyday practice. Happiness is an emotion that has to be built and maintained consciously. A choice.
Life is a game where everyday when I decide to be happy and useful, I acquire points.
I have deep embedded in me the belief that I was sent here to have a marvelous experience and I decided that I better make the most out of it.
2019 meant listening to myself more and as a result my entire life changed. While meditating on how to make 2020 even better, I wish everyone to find their purpose in the coming year and to feel abundant and loved.
Waiting for your thoughts on how your 2019 has made you a better person.: