Today, I am turning 24 and in 24 years, there are a couple of things that I learned. Here are some lessons that my experiences and the people I met along the way taught me.
Lesson n°1: Likes attract likes
One of the biggest lessons I learned while traveling is that your vibe attracts a similar vibe. If you are negative, you will attract negative people into your life.
That’s what happened for me for many years, I did not understand why I was only attracting toxic and depressed people until I shift my mindset, started seeing life with brighter colors and met incredibly kind and inspiring people.
Shit will still happen, and you will still meet asshole from time to time, but you won’t be drawn by them anymore.
Everything is a matter of mindset and if you focus on the positive things in your life, you will attract more and more positive things into your experience.
If you are interested in changing your perspective in life, I highly recommend you to read The Law of Attraction by Abraham – Hicks
Lesson n°2: Love yourself first
I realized that I desperately wanted to be loved, that I forgot to love myself first.
You can’t feel loved if you don’t love yourself. The love you receive from others is a reflection of the love you feel for yourself. You can’t even truly love someone if you don’t love yourself first, simply because you can’t fill someone else’s cup of you don’t fill in yours.
Self-love and body acceptance are key. If you start loving yourself, you’ll notice that life flows way more easily.
Lesson n°3: Don’t try to do everything at the same time
I can get very enthusiastic about things, there are so many things I am interested in and I want to do everything. As a result, I am involved in 100 projects, take commitments, and in the end, I am paralyzed, I feel overwhelmed and don’t do anything.
I finally realized that it was just counterproductive and that I was only burning myself up. I am working through this impulsiveness, to not say yes to everything straight away. I am also trying to say no more often.
I learned that multitasking is not necessarily a good thing, as you can’t properly focus on one thing and do it the right way. I need to take one thing at a time to be more efficient and more mindful about what I chose to commit.
Lesson n°4: Show up and be consistent
I used to be really scared of doing certain things that I love, just because I thought I was not good enough or because I was scared of people’s reactions. Or I was not committing regularly, annihilating all my efforts. Hello, impostor syndrome!
One of the best examples of this is my yoga practice. I used to think I was not good enough, not strong enough, not flexible enough (which is bullshit, you don’t need this to do yoga) and as a result, I was not practicing very often, even if I loved it, knowing that I was feeling really good after a session and even if I wanted to be a yoga teacher. Of course, if I was not practicing, I couldn’t get better, stronger or more flexible. Then I started to challenge myself to step up on my mat consistently, every day, even for 10 minutes. Not only did I improve myself, but I feel more confident about my practice.
Another example is this blog. I started it a year and a half ago, for myself and my family and friends, so they could follow my adventures while traveling. Little by little, it became a sort of diary for me and at some point, I felt the need to share something else that only travel content. I wanted to talk about other areas of my life, but I was scared about how people would react to it. If I partly overcame my fears and post more and more about non-travel-related topics, I sometimes still feel like a fraud and have the impression that no-one cares. That’s also why I am still struggling to post consistently, maybe because I wished to touch more people with my content. But if I don’t show up and post, I won’t get more readers, of course.
Long story short, like everything in life, results take time and need practice, so be patient, keep showing up every day, do the work consistently, and you will see the results.
Lesson n°5: Meditate
We really underestimate the power of meditation and how good and it can make us feel. After 15 minutes of meditation, I can handle everything!
I noticed that since I meditate on a regular basis, I am way less stressed at work and manage a difficult situation with way more ease.
So sit, close your eyes and focus on your breath.
Lesson n°6: It’s okay not to be okay
In the travel world and in a great part of the wellness/spiritual community, and in general, especially on social media, we tend to show perfect lives, how happy and positive we are, everything seems to be rainbow and butterflies. But that’s not true.
I used to hide my down moments and do as if everything was perfect. It’s okay not to be okay. It’s okay to feel sad, angry, disappointed, tired. Allow yourself to be vulnerable. Express your emotions. Ask for help. It is important to speak out to protect your mental health.
One of the many lessons traveling taught me is that it’s okay not to be okay but in the end, everything will work out because I am an eternal optimist.
Lesson n°7: Don’t be afraid to let go (of things, people, traumas)
I love decluttering. My house, my wardrobe, but also my life. I am not materialistic, and I have no problem throwing stuff away, but in the past, and still now, I struggle to let go of people or situations. But little by little, I am getting rid off of old patterns, people that don’t fit in my new life and traumas. And oh god that feels good!
Lesson n°8: Dance
If there is one thing that gets me out of my head, it’s dancing. I love dancing alone in front of my mirror at home, I love dancing in a bar or in a club. It really allows me to relax, stop thinking it makes me feel good in my body, beautiful and happy. Dancing automatically lift my mood!
Lesson n°9: Listen to yourself, connect with your intuition
Do you know this sensation in your gut that is telling you that’s something is off but you keep doing what you are doing are follow someone else advice instead of listening to yourself and follow your intuition? That’s me.
I am so out of tune with my intuition that I don’t even know how to make the difference between being in alignment and being out of alignment. Little by little, I try to reconnect with my intuition and listen to myself, baby step by baby step.
Lesson n°10: Be grateful
We often forget how lucky we are: to have a roof on top of our heads, food on our plate, people we love and that love us, health, education. Being grateful and be mindful of all the good things around you makes you happier, helps you sleep better, strengthens your immune system and so much more!
I took the habit to write down every night, at least 3 positive things that happened to me during the day, even if I had a shitty day. Sometimes, it will only be a good breakfast, the stupid joke of a colleague and a relaxing shower.
I also like, from time to time, sending a message to a friend or a relative just to say hi, remind them I love them and that I am grateful to have them in my life.
Practice daily gratitude and your life will be more beautiful!
Lesson n°11: Do what you want
I wasted so much time trying to please people and do things I did not really want to do. As a result, I just felt miserable.
Now, I try not to care too much about other people’s opinions and do the things that really matter to me, without fearing to be judged.
Lesson n°12: Hugs can solve pretty much everything
And it is scientifically proven! Hugs release oxytocin, a neurotransmitter responsible for empathy or confidence and that helps fighting anxiety, as well as dopamine, which is responsible for the sensation of pleasure. As a result, never hesitate to ask or hug someone. It is as beneficial for the one who receives it as for the one who gives it! And I like hugs.
These are the first 12 lessons I learned during my short life. Stay tuned to know the rest next week!
PS: Happy birthday to me !