When in doubt, travel

I’ve always been in love with traveling, but this developed into a whole new dimension when I travelled through Latin America for almost 6 months last year. Now, I perceive traveling as a gift.

But first things first. I lived in London for almost 5 years and had a job that I loved, as a marketing & communications manager for luxury hotel amenities. It was all good until our company was sold and they started changing responsibilities, hierarchies and ways of working. A few months later I decided that I wouldn’t be happy in this new set up and that after 3 years in the same job, it was about time to leave. Plus I always had in the back of my head that the next time I quit my job, I would travel through Latin America, a dream and vision that I’ve had for many years.

My boyfriend at the time decided to quit his job too and so we started planning our 4 months trip together. Wow, I was so excited to burn the bridges behind me, well not all of them, but definitely a few, like giving up a well-paid job, leaving my nice apartment in London and of course leaving my friends for the time being. But the excitement about being free like a bird and exploring the world was definitely bigger than the fear of leaving something behind. Dare to be brave!

So, in early June, we left London and flew to Cuba, our first stop. Unfortunately, after approximately 3 weeks my boyfriend at the time and me already got into a fight and although I don’t remember what it was all about, I do remember, that I felt like I cannot fully express my opinion, my thoughts and feelings. We continued the journey and got into more discussions, majorly due to different perceptions and interpretations of situations and probably also due to a lack of communication. We spent amazing times together, but when in Peru, we seemed to have reached the peak of frustration, so after a horrible fight, we broke up between Peru and Bolivia.

I was in shock. I simply didn’t realize what had happened and how we got from planning a trip together to breaking up on that trip. I also thought “Why me?” and “Why again?” and felt really sorry for myself. On the other hand, I felt strong and self-confident and kept thinking that this guy simply didn’t deserve me. When he suggested to me to cancel the trip and fly back to the UK or Germany, all alarm bells switched on. This suggestion felt so wrong. It was MY idea, it was MY trip and I didn’t want to give up on MY dream and vision, because of a broken relationship. No, I was stronger than that and so I accepted the break up and switched into pragmatic problem-solving mode.

First question that arose was where to go next and when. With regards to where, I decided to more or less stick to the original travel route and hence flew from La Paz to Uyuni to visit the awesome salt flats Salar de Uyuni. Regarding when, well the sooner the better and so a couple of days later, I was en route again, this time alone.

So this is when my solo travel trip through Latin America started. When in doubt, travel!

Yes I was confused, yes I was sad, yes I was shocked, yes I felt sorry for myself, yes I was angry, yes I was in doubt. But somewhere between all this uncertainty, fear, and sadness, I felt extremely confident, strong, brave and positive. Because deep down in my heart I trusted and knew that this had happened for a reason, for something better & bigger.

And life showed me indeed that the best was yet to come, if I only embraced this change.

What we can learn from this experience:

  • That it’s important to never give up on our dreams.
  • “When in doubt, travel” is true, since it gives us time to clear our head, to find back to our heart and to feel at peace with the world.
  • That it is important to talk, talk, talk. Expressing our opinion, thoughts and feelings is critical to happiness, as we can only be happy when we are true to ourselves and stick to our values.
  • Self-love is key.

Thank you for being here and reading my story. I really hope that my posts help you to find light in any sad situation that you might be facing. Stay tuned, as I will continue to share my journey to myself with you.

Yours, Nina

 

 

My breakthrough

My breakthrough is what I call the beginning of the journey to myself.

I look at pictures taken in Cozumel, Mexico, and I see pure happiness, in my eyes, in my smile, in the glow in my face.

This happened when I finally allowed me to go on an inner journey to myself. Allowing me to explore who I am, reflecting whether I’m happy with who I am, finding out what I stand for, what my values are. It’s difficult to describe the feeling of this permission, but I felt relieved. I felt light. It felt like the wings that were glued to my body (probably by myself?) for many years were finally starting to open, because I permitted me to open them. Slowly, but surely.

I realised that I’ve always had big wings, but that I had neglected or forgotten them for a very long time. So, when I could feel my wings again, I was able to open them, to use them and to finally start creating a life that should feel as free as a bird.

Which brings me back to my answer (always!) upon the question:

If you were an animal, what would you like to be?

My breakthrough was not one single moment, it was a process. However, I recognised that specific moment of happiness in Cozumel as my breakthrough moment. And I will never ever forget it.

If you are at a turning point in your life, please trust yourself and life. Trust that things will happen for you at the right time and remember that life is always working for you, not against you.

Yours, Nina