Within one month it will be one year ago that I left my well-paid, corporate job. Crazy how time flies. When I was working, time flew because I was stressed all the time. Past year time flew by because I had so much fun. I feel it's a good time to make an evaluation about where I want to go this year.
As many of you know, I left my corporate job because I realized I was stuck in the rat race. I had all the typical symptoms: feeling tired all the time, in a bad mood, irritable, physical discomforts, waking up with the thought "I have to do a million of things today", giving up my hobby's and randomly having the need to cry. It wasn't easy to realize I was stuck, I thought it was just a difficult period that I would soon pass. It's only after going to a yoga retreat (I'd never done yoga before) and by being pushed by my sister to quit my job, that I actually started considering it.
And so I did. I realized life should be more then feeling miserable and without meaning.
So I quit. I quit not having control of my time. I quit daily stress. I quit not feeling enough. I quit a full agenda. I quit not being me. I know that many of you reading this, will relate to it. Especially if you are like me: a young woman with a healthy ambition and no kids. It's proven that we tend to self-doubt ourselves more than men, we search for this confirmation in our work instead of within ourselves. This results in not putting limits to work load, not speaking up, wanting to make sure everyone is pleased with our work. Fuck that. The only person who should be pleased with my work should be myself.
I will be honest with you, I had no idea what I would do next. I just wanted to feel happy and balanced again. I realized I'd lost myself. I didn't know anymore what I liked. I only knew what I did't like. So I started my journey to find myself again. One of the things I had always wanted to do and never found time was to read. One of the books that I found eye-opening in this moment was The Untethered Soul from Michael Singer and You are a badass from Jen Sincero. I also started doing ceramics, playing guitar, meditation, yoga and I went camping for some months. I was recommended to practice not doing anything, like literally anything, not even meditating or sitting down drinking a cup of tea. So I also tried to this. (I still don't manage to do this.) After some months, it started to come back to me what's really important to me and what I want to do with my time here.
I realized I do have a purpose, that I matter and that I can make a difference. I'm here to discover, to learn, to love and to help others. It's no rocket science really, but we learn to put money first. Of course money is important to live in the society, to live comfortably and to invest in projects important to us. So I started to think about how I can combine living a life that I love, with living comfortably financially.
First I had to think about which life I would love to have. I say 'I had to think about', because I had never thought about this before. I had only ever thought about how to earn a living. This is also something I talked a lot about with my partner Luis, we spend hours talking about how we want to see ourselves in the future. Slowly I started to realize I needed to live more in respect to nature. I needed to start living more consciously about what I was consuming in general: clothes, cosmetics, items, food, plastic, paper, information, ideas, people's energy. Why? Because everything I buy and consume makes an impact on the world around me.
I don't have a choice in this. The only choice that I have is to make a positive or negative impact.
So, I decided to start this blog, telling about my journey searching a more conscious lifestyle. Doing this, I would live more in line with my purpose to discover, to learn, to love and to help others. And what a ride it was... and is! I'm so thankful for all the support I receive from you. I can only hope I inspire you to take a leap as well. For yourself. For your happiness.
So what next? Now I need to find a way how to combine my passion for eco-lifestyle with becoming financially independent. So I'm testing different ways. One way is that I started organizing Eco Lifestyle Tours. This is a discovery trip in different cities in Belgium where I guide a little group of people to the nicest coffee and lunch bars, zero-waste shops, eco gift shops, ateliers and all kind of eco projects. We also meet the entrepreneurs behind these stores, ateliers and products to hear about their story and purpose. I also want to open an online shop with a personal selection of eco-items, with the same purpose of making it easier for people to find an eco-lifestyle. So this is my dream. And now my life makes so much sense.
Of course it's not easy, I tend to still base my self-worth on work success, I'm still anxious and impatient. But it's a learning process, it's all part of the game. Now I still randomly start crying, but this time because I'm grateful. Grateful for having control over my time, and to be given the opportunity to go for my dream.
I don't know where this new road will lead me to.. we actually never do, but I do have one certainty: It sure is a lot of fun!!
So here's a little challenge for you: Think about what your ideal life would be. Be really honest with yourself. If you want, you can share it with me in the comments section. The more you talk about your ideal life, the more you manifest it, and the sooner it will arrive.
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