Another beautifully lost dreamer with an incurable case of wanderlust.

26 & WHIDWML

In 2013 I hit a low that lasted a while. I was going through a very tough and confusing time in my life, along with many other early 20 year olds. I didn’t know where to go or what to do, so I decided to write an article called 23 & WHIDWML with my thoughts and feelings at the time. It was great to be able to share how I felt in a world where mental health is no longer seen as taboo. Now, three and a bit years on, I’ve felt inspired to write a follow up to that post!

So, I certainly wouldn’t say I have my life in order (because, seriously, does anyone?) but I will say that I really feel like I’ve overcome many of the boundaries I had before.

I am very lucky to be living in a place that I am absolutely in love with. I spend much more time outdoors; mainly at the beach, which is my happy place. I’ve discovered saltwater is a great healer; you need to sweat it out, release tears and the float in the calm ocean. I used to think I was such a ‘city girl’ but it turns out being away from all the hustle and bustle and closer to nature does wonders for my anxiety.

I am grateful to have a job. We all moan about having to work, but many people in the world don’t have the luxury of an income. After struggling to find work in Melbourne, it made me realise how important it is to appreciate your job when you have one. I enjoy inspiring people to travel and having the opportunity to travel myself. I’ve been blessed to have visited so many new countries and experience new things over the past few years. I really believe my current role has helped me grow and understand more about the world we live. I’m saying ‘yes’ to more and more too. Sometimes, when you’re feeling down and stuck in a rut it’s hard to pick yourself up and say yes to opportunities, but it’s like anything, once you do it, it feels amazing. I’ve overcome some of my deepest fears and pushed myself to my limits on several occasions.

Social media is great. It allows you to meet new people and interact with old friends, even when you’re 10,500 miles away. However, I am trying to spend less time on social media, and, when I am on it, I try to take things with a pinch of salt; which sometimes goes well and other times not so well. I try and shake off anything that upsets me or makes me feel left out or lonely. I try not to read deeply into it all and I try to be mindful of my own posts. It’s amazing how ‘social media’ in fact isolating each and everyone of us. It basically drills into us that everybody else has this perfect life; but in reality, we all have our demons, our struggles. We’re all guilty of only showing the best bits to others. It’s something I’m trying to work on at the moment.

I’ve also learned not to take everything the media reports to heart. I used to get so worked up and upset with the state of the world and although it may sometimes feel like the world is falling apart, we need to realise that the media thrive on unrest and scaremongering. As humans, we need to stand together and unite, find the best in people and ignore the segregation they’re trying to create. We need to love people; no matter where we are from or what we believe, we all have the same needs, emotions and desires deep down.

In the past few years I have really tried to shift my perspective. It can often be challenging, but focusing on what you have, rather than always wanting more makes you far more content and happy. I’m discovering that although it is good to have goals, life is not a checklist and plans change all the damn time. That’s cool. You’ve just gotta keep swimming and go with the flow.

Looking back from 2013, I have done a fair amount. I haven’t completed any of those big conventional milestones just yet, or even some of the things that I probably thought I would have done by now if you had asked me when I was 23, but I’ve worked so hard on my health and wellbeing, and feel much better for it. I believe that a lesson can be taken from anything that comes your way. Experience is different for everybody and we should never compare our path to another’s path. Too much pressure is put on where we should be and what we should be doing by certain ages. It’s ridiculous.

The main thing I am working on right now would be finding my own sense of inner peace and keep myself grounded. I take things that happen around me very personally and I’m currently trying to not let anything affect my internal balance. This includes not letting any outside negativity affect my mood, which is extremely difficult. I also overthink everything, constantly. Things play on my mind and often make me physically ill from stress and worry. I’m learning the difference between situational and real friendships, which can be quite upsetting, but I’m having to accept it as a normal part of life. People come and go. They can be in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. Sometimes life takes you in different directions and that is okay. I just need to learn to recognise when I’m forcing things and need to step away or let go. I also need a puppy, because puppies make everything better, yes?

Realising what is important and what isn’t, is a lesson I think that you learn during your twenties. Priorities change and things begin falling into place. You discover what it is that truly makes your soul happy. Follow your callings. I’ve always had this burning desire to somehow help protect the planet; to become a part of a conservation project. It always seemed too unrealistic though. I can’t make a living from it and I have no idea where to start. I have no humanitarian or biology degrees, but I do have a drive in me that wants to make things happen. I looked at my strengths; my creativity, passion for learning and empathy. After a about a month of emails and persistence, I may finally be on the right track. It’s healthy to have something that you do for you. Whether it be yoga, art, science club, golf, music, fashion, travel… whatever. You need to put yourself out there and fire up that passion you have inside of you. It can make you feel like you have a purpose and it has done wonders for me so far by keeping my mind stimulated, heart full and body active.

So there you go. I’m certainly not saying that I’m perfectly content and happy all the time but the progress during these three years has been amazing. Life is a journey. It’s all about the ups and downs. The happy times teach you gratitude and the tough teach you strength. Embrace the emotions and enjoy the ride. We will all get ‘there’ eventually, wherever ‘there’ is!

2 comments

  1. Becki /

    Love this and couldn’t agree more. I too am on a similar path trying not to compare myself to others and creating my own path in life. It can be a hard and rocky path sometimes but being mindful, taking each day as it comes and being kinder to ourselves is the way forward.
    Love becki
    X

    • Thank you for your reply Becki, I am so glad you are focusing on creating your own life path and being kind to yourself. Happiness is so important and your mindfulness practice will help in all aspects of your life. Lots of love xxx

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