“It’s the one with a certain and definite dream,
who boldly steps into the uncertain and indefinite,
who goes the farthest.”
I don’t know much about the future right now. What lies ahead is a complete mystery.
The common thread in this adventure I embarked on in January has been uncertainty. But it is what has driven me, not what has held me back.
I’ve never been much of a planner. I’m more of a fly by the seat of my pants-er. In Spain, I have no clue what the next day holds because my schedule changes frequently as students rearrange or cancel classes or I pick-up classes from other teachers. My income is anything but consistent, my contract on my flat is up June 30, and who knows what I am going to do to make money this summer.
It is so freeing to have no idea what the future holds and to be happy with that feeling and actually find peace in it. I didn’t always think like this, however.
My last few months in Arizona were full of uncertainty. But rather than letting go and embracing the unknown, I clung to fear and anxiety and slipped into darkness. It took me a while to realize that the possibilities were endless, and that if I didn’t leap I would never know if I could swim (figuratively people…I can definitely swim!). Now that I can look back and compare how I felt then to how I feel now about my uncertain future, I have learned something very important. It is all about mindset.
If you look at something, like an uncertain future for example, (Where am I going to live? How am I going to make money? Where will I leave my stuff? Will I fail?) with fear, then it literally seems impossible and too risky. Once you reach the point of being stressed about the situation, then you have slipped into darkness. You will not have any better of an idea of what to do if you are stressed than if you are living in acceptance. There is never anything gained through stress. It blocks your energy flow, clouds your mind, and literally debilitates you. There are incredible physical effects of harboring stress. It breaks our bodies down and manifests illness and imbalance.
Many of you may be thinking, “Of course you’re optimistic about your future, you’re in Spain! What could possibly be stressful about that?” Well let me tell you. I have no jobs lined up this summer because I want to travel. I could stay in Granada and work but that is the safe option; the option I have already sworn off. I don’t have a mountain of savings to live off (currently taking donations though hahaha!!!). I am literally homeless starting July 1st. There have been moments where I couldn’t breathe thinking about all this. Moments of fear thinking I am going to fail and not make it through the summer and have to go home (literally my nightmare).
I could easily feel completely defeated and give up my summer dreams and stay in Granada and work because that is the safe and logical option. And I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t thought about it. It is all about mindset though. I push the negativity out and tell myself that I will hustle now to make this summer dream happen because the alternative is absolutely unacceptable. If you make a conscious decision to accept nothing less than exactly what you what, then there is really nothing holding you back but yourself.
Granted, in the moment, it is hard to accept a stressful situation. The future seems bleak and the present is painful. But if you approach it with a smile and a little bit of optimism, then some incredible things happen. Doors open. Opportunity falls in your lap. People are attracted into your life who can make pivotal changes. All because you are open. You have freed space within you that is not inhabited by stress and negativity.
When you are more open to an uncertain situation, there are many satisfying options. We see not one way, but many. Like a river flowing towards the ocean, our lives can take many paths. But in the end, we eventually reach our goal. I will not be devastated if one route does not work out, because what I am certain of is that there are many things that will make me happy. I do not have my heart set on anything but traveling around, discovering new parts of Spain, and meeting people this summer. Call me crazy, but I think that will be fairly easy to accomplish.
I am generally a very logical person. I make informed and educated decisions and do not usually take too many risks. Yes, moving out here with nothing was a risk but it was also educated (mostly). This summer I am following my heart and letting logic take a vacation. I need adventure and exploration lead by my heart not my head. Don’t worry mom and dad, I will not be stupid about where I let my heart lead me and I will bring my head along, but it will not be doing the navigating.
Come July 1st I am really making my gypsy dreams come true. I have some exciting things in the works and once it is all settled I will share my plans. Until then, anything could change on a dime and I don’t want to put something out there to only go back on it. I am going to hit the road, this I promise you.
I want to be in charge of my destiny, not follow someone else’s dreams. I want to know that what I am doing is exactly what I want, not a compromise. That may mean that I am on a solo adventure, but the opportunities to meet other people along the way in the same boat are so much greater.
I will carve my own path.
I have always been incredibly optimistic and find the silver-lining in just about anything. I have simply chosen to walk with a smile on the sunny side of the street. Happiness is a choice and we have the great power of consciousness to make that very choice. If something bad happens there are always two ways of looking at it. You can say, “poor me, why me” or you can say “well this really sucks but I am better off now that I know how to react to this type of situation”. There is a lesson in everything.
Choose to be happy, and you will be. Choose to be angry or sad or stressed, and you will be.
I am clearly no guru or life coach, but I do hope to shed some light on this common problem we all face.
Which path should you take? Will it bring happiness and success or pain and failure. You truly cannot know until you try. But either way, you are sure to learn something along the way. Whether it is the way to do something over and over again or the way to never do something again, at least you know. You tried. You grew and you gained invaluable experience.
It’s all about your mindset.
So the next time you feel overwhelmed about something that is out of your control, just let it ride. Here is a metaphor for you to think of in times of stress: A surfer does not fight the the blinding force of a monster wave regardless of his fear. He points the nose of the board to the shore, hunkers down for the ride of his life, and lets the wave take him in. He trusts in his ability to navigate the waters and knows the power of the wave is far too great to resist. Surrender.
Create space for optimism and positivity. Beautiful things happen when you are open. Bad things happen when you are stressed.
Live in the light. Trust yourself and know that what you want is worth fighting for.