Resilience Evil … This too shall pass

Yoda

“The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”

– Nelson Mandela

Over the past years, thousands of self-help books and articles were written about resilience. Lots have been said on this matter – yet I do not necessarily agree with all the theories exposed, and whilst I am not a resilience expert, I have read a lot about it and had to exercise resilience rather regularly over the past months … So I decided to join the group of “people who write about resilience”.

First things first, what is resilience about ? To make things simple, resilience refers to the ability to deal with change and to adapt to it. It is the ability to resist to pressure, in a sound way. By sound way, I mean without passing through depression or moments of black out or freak out ( which is not the easiest part)

If you look at the definition of resilience on the Oxford Dictionary website, they also refer to the resilience of material ( a piece of fabric), stating that it is “the ability of a substance or object to spring back into shape”

For mankind, resilience is most of the time used when talking about challenging life situations (death of a beloved, loss of a job, major life changing conditions) etc …

When in the middle of a crisis situation, a resilient person will not let adversity define her. She will actually manage to keep on going and find ways to overcome the TEMPORARILY situation she is facing.

You may remember that “ when life gives you lemons” quote …  (make lemonade, Caipirinha, delicious lemon cake .. ) – well resilience would be this ability to make a good things out of the sour lemons you could be given.

Resilience is for me a critical skill that all of us should work on. Yes, I said work on, because resilience is actually something that all of us can develop. There is not such a thing as genetics in being resilient. Of course, some people may be stronger or more optimistic than others, but the point is that we all can develop this “resilience” muscle. Resilience has been proven to help managing stress and reducing risks of depression – so those 2 reasons should be hopefully a good incentive for all of us to keep on this direction.

The point of this post is above all to clarify conceptions I had about resilience and share them with you in case you might find them useful for your future practice. I will make a “how to resilience on a separate post”.

Resilience does not consist in pretending everything is ok

Resilience indeed is made to help you overcome tough situations but it does not imply that you should bluntly pretend that everything is ok and do as if nothing had happened, especially if this is not the case.

On the contrary, the first path to resilience is to accept and be honest with your emotions of the moment. By being able to externalize, interpret and translate how you feel about a situation, you will be in a better shape to overcome the challenge you are being thrown at.

Trying to put a brave face and smile, saying that there is no problem at all, whilst thinking the contrary is for me a dangerous way of coping with a tough situation and taking the risk of this hitting you back further down the line.

The thin line is to be able to move forward once you have acknowledged all the possibly tough emotions and pains you were facing – else this could then lead you to possible episodes of depression.

Being resilient is not something that you acquire from one day to another

Resilience is something that you will learn to develop with time and with experiences as you progress through life. As mentioned above, some people may be more equipped for resilience than others, but you will be able to become a resilient guru with practice.

Whether we like it or not, as pretty as life is, we all know that there will be moments where our hearts, patience and guts will be tested, and as you go through those difficult moments, resilience will make a whole lot difference on the way you will go through those challenging moments. Think about resilience as a “sport” … the more your practice the better you will get. You never saw a sedentary person waking up one day saying he will go running his first half marathon the coming Sunday … it goes the same way for resilience. You will learn to deal with situations and to get over it more and more “easily” ( I do not like that word too much as some life events may still be pretty hardcore) the more you practice resilience.

“Resilience is About How You Recharge, Not How You Endure”

This quote comes from an article published in the  Harvard Business Review by Shawn Achor and Michelle Gielan

I think this is a great way to explain what resilience is about and also how to build it. Too often we tend to forget that resilience is about how we recharge and not about how much we can cope with. Without recharging, we would not be able to be the resilient guru we would love for very long.

This article backed with scientific data explains that that our ability to become resilient is driven by our ability to recover and to be able to take “breaks” in the middle of the “resilience battle”. This is particularly true in the professional environment. Achor and Giellan explained : “The key to resilience is trying really hard, then stopping, recovering, and then trying again”.

The comparison I would use to explain what could happen if you do not take break and  to recharge is stress. Stress is initially an engineering term that define an amount of pression that is being applied to an object, and which with time tend to deform the object. Compressive stress will tends to squeeze the object, tensile stress will stretch it and shear stress will cut it. So think about yourself as a body which submitted to regular pressure and tensions from the day to day life. If you are not taking breaks or stop being in the middle of the agitation, but instead only go for the resilience battle … you may find under continuous pressure, ending-up stressing you at the very best or exhausting you.

Life is already challenging on its own, so be sure to remember to be kind to yourself and to take those moments to recharge so your resilience abilities remain strong over time

Resilience is not to be used to make up for someone’s else cowardice.

Do not let people use the concept of resilience to make you accept the bad decision making or justify such or such unpleasant action they are about to tell you.

Indeed you will need to be resilient if this person is about to tell you something unpleasant, but who is the best placed to support you on the resilience path is you. I have seen too often individuals or organizations telling people us that one must remain resilient because they are about to tell or do something that will most likely be upsetting.

Example: “Well dear, you gonna have to be resilient because the company is not doing well and you may at some point be impacted  … “

Well … Fair enough.  No one could challenge the logic that if you are more likely going to have to leave the company (unwillingly) you will have to build resilience to accept this “ending”. Yet there is a difference between you being resilient in front of an adverse situation versus a third party dropping the resilience magic word just before telling you something that will hurt you, or because they do not want to bear the responsibilities and consequences of what they are about to do or say. Resilience should not be used as an excuse to redeem someone from the responsibilities of its acts or says, or poor decision making.

So there we are … those were several clarifications I think are worth keeping in mind. I am sure there is a lot to be said still on that topic. Keep in mind that eventually, being resilient is a journey, there will be moments where it will be easier than other, but do not give up, because this is something that will help you to make it through life, which as beautiful as it can be, will also shake us up. As Alain to Botton rightly said  “One’s doing well if age improves even slightly one’s capacity to hold on to that vital truism: “This too shall pass.”

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In 2000 I will be as glamour as Jennifer Aniston. A modern tale on why you should have less expectations towards your expectations.

If you do not expect the unexpected you will not find it, for it is not to be reached by search or trail. – Heraclitus

I can still remember when my friends and I were fantasizing about how life would be in 2000… We were lucid enough to know that cars would probably not be flying yet, but still creative with regards to how our future selves would look like. As far as I was concerned, I thought that on 2000, my 14 years old self would have long hair, braces and the charisma of … Jennifer Aniston (?! … Friends was running high at that time)

Years passed and as we welcomed 2000, there were neither braces nor long hair, and charisma … probably as much as what a donut would have. Life went on, and I must admit that I quite quickly overcame and accepted the fact that things did not turn out as expected.

Years passed and as I started to work, I recall a conversation I had with my boss (and friend) back at the time, around how I was seeing my career path as well as my personal projects. In a nutshell, it was : working all over the world until reaching 25/28 and then consider moving to France and settle down. Again … years passed and if I look where I am today, it is the same story as the Jenifer Anniston glam … reality can be quite skewed from expectations.

Was I ever disappointed or sad with those 2 episodes ? Hell No!!!

Surprised : Yes, and for the very best to be honest.

This is not meant to be mean or to turn the back to whoever was by my side at those times – but just to show how plans can simply derails from expectations, and get us in much different and often better situations than what we may have imagined for ourselves.

Of course, those are rather “trivial” examples of expectation vs. reality, but talking with friends and sharing experiences with them recently, we tended to come down to the same conclusion.

When we put down ideas of what life should be like, we are free to wholeheartedly say yes to our life as it is. – Tara Brach

Does it mean you should live a life with no goals ? Absolutely not.

Does it mean that among the goals and objectives you want to achieve, there should be room for the unexpected ? I would tend to think so.

By focusing on your goal, you are taking ownership and responsibility for where you want to go, whilst by letting down expectations, you are opening yourself to a universe of (unknown) possibilities as to how you may get there. In essence, focus on the moment and on the what, more than on the should, remembering that it is not because things do not go as expected that they are necessarily wrong.

As The Dalai Lama  said, sometimes not having what you want is a wonderful  stroke of luck.

The pursuit of happiness

Henry Ford

“Happiness is the art of never holding in your mind the memory of any unpleasant thing that has passed.” ( Unknown)

Celebrating 1 year living in Brazil, one of my dearest dreams, I gave a thought about the pursuit of happiness – which led me to where I am today.

You may say I am a dreamer, you may think I am futile or that I live in a world wearing pink glasses … I am OK with it. I won’t stop believing that as much as everyone has the right to freedom, we all have the right to be happy.

As easy as it may sound or as it is to say, happiness may though not be so easily reachable. Proof of this, is that  hundreds of articles distilling advice on how to be happy are released daily on the internet.

I am though so thankful because most of my family, friends and entourage are overall happy and content with their life. However, our appreciation of happiness, our ability to feel happy, and our belief that we truly deserve to be happy will vary throughout our lives.

Even if thankfully – little is required to be happy, there may be projects and prospects of happiness that will be harder to reach as we live.

There will be days where you feel like walking on clouds, with a light mind and a light heart, yet there will be days when you will be stuck and feel that you can’t take it anymore, and that you cannot get or deserve what you are dreaming about. That is for those days that I am writing this, should you ever need something to get you out of struggles.

Whenever you doubt about your right to be happy, whenever you lie in bed eyes opened looking at the ceiling, lost in thoughts. Whenever you ask yourself if you deserve what is happening to you, whenever you wrongly tell yourself “enjoy what is happening now because it is not going to last” or “you are not deserving what is happening to you” or “why should you get to experience such a nice life when other people are suffering”.

Whenever such thoughts ever come to your mind, I want you to remember that you are entitled to happiness and that you are the only one who can make it happen.

It will require energy, risks taking, and in some instances battling, but you can make it. Battles does not mean fighting or being mean, and it does not require to hurt others, but it surely means standing up for your cause – always respecting others, and yourself.

There will be times when, as you are about to reach your goal, you may suddenly feel like being at the edge of a cliff, paralyzed and afraid of making one more step forward. Be brave enough, it will pass.

Nowadays, one of the most common reasons for people not being happy or not being as happy as they truly deserve is the weight of their past. We are surely the results of situations and choices made in the past, and even if we cannot erase them from our personal history, nothing and no one is allowed to hold this past against us nor hold us back from being happy TODAY, TOMORROW, because of what happened yesterday.

We are not defined by our past, but we are who we are because of it. 

There will be doubts, there will be fears, there will be ghosts of the past, there will be people “knocking at the door of your conscious”. It is up to you to decide if you want to let them in.

There will be jealous, lost or sad people trying to influence or discourage you from getting what you want and being where you want. No doubts about it… but I would just tell them to go and love themselves and help them getting out of the negative spiral they may be caught in. Though do not let them make you walk away from what is yours, especially because happiness is positively contagious.

“Thousands of candles can be lighted from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.”
Buddha

Eventually what Henry Ford said is very applicable to this theme … ‘Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.’

“I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy – I’m telling you it’s going to be worth it.” – Art Williams

I am leaving you, but will for sure never forget you

New Year

From the first day you changed my life. 

From the very beginning, you made “my reality” collapse. My life plans, my future and the many projects I had in mind … What seemed to be an everlasting truth simply vanished. That was my first lesson.The first of a long list.

Thanks to you, I grew a personality even stronger than the one I already had. I learnt to bounce back and find quick solutions to dilemmas I had never thought about before.

Thanks to you I grew up. I discovered the world and visited places I had not considered going to, such as Serbia or Montenegro.

Thanks to you, I got back my passion for adventures and living new experiences, including this willingness to cross as many items as possible on my “life list”.

Thanks to you I realized what love is about: family love, friendships, kind words, daily attentions and care. It is about areas that are most of the time more meaningful, reliable and rewarding than a romance.

Thanks to you, I met amazing people I now call « friends » and saw long term friendships becoming « family ».

Thanks to you I made one of my biggest dreams come true whilst 3 years ago I thought there was little to no chance for it to happen.

When I thought I had been through a wide range of emotions, if not a roller coaster …came Mid-November. This is when I experienced my first adult sorrow. When I felt at the same time : sadness, impossibility to explain or understand what was happening, and yet I felt hope. Indeed, those tears were full of hope: knowing that eventually love will triumph.

When December came, I stopped and stepped back to reflect on what has just happened in a year… 52 weeks… 365 days. A year that passed by in the blink of an eye.

Little did I know when I was celebrating your arrival, that I was about to enter into an experience that would rock my world, and start the first day of the rest of my life.

2015 .. I am leaving you, but will for sure never forget you.

Never.

Picture is mine

Je te quitte … mais jamais ne t’oublierai

New Year

Tu as changé le cours de ma vie. Dès les premiers jours.

Tu as fait s’effondrer en quelques secondes des certitudes qui semblaient jusqu’à lors inébranlables. Ce fut ma première leçon.

Tu m’as appris à me forger un caractère encore plus fort qu’il ne l’était déjà. Grâce à toi, j’ai appris à rebondir, à trouver des solutions rapides à des dilemmes auxquels je n’avais pas pensé il y a un an de ça.

Tu m’as fait grandir. J’ai découvert le monde et visité des pays où je n’aurais jamais imaginé me rendre un jour. Ce fut le cas pour la Bosnie et le Monténégro.

Tu m’as donné l’envie et l’opportunité de vivre des expériences insolites, parmi lesquelles figurent ces «  life list moments » que je répertorie au fil des mois.

Tu m’as appris que le mot aimer ne s’applique pas seulement à la sphère romantique, mais aussi à la famille, aux amis, aux paroles, aux gestes d’affections et aux petites attentions du quotidien qui en disent long.

Grâce à toi, j’ai rencontré des personnes fantastiques que je peux appeler aujourd’hui  “amis”, et j’ai vu des amitiés de longue date devenir “famille”.

Tu m’as permis de réaliser un de mes rêves les plus chers sur lequel j’avais fait une croix il a 3 ans de ça.

Et quand je pensais avoir déjà vécu un large éventail d’émotions, s’en vint mi-novembre. Je t’ai alors livré mon premier chagrin d’adulte. Je revois couler le long de mes joues des larmes lourdes, des lames chaudes et salées. Des larmes d’incompréhension et de douleur. Mais aussi des larmes d’espoir où l’on se dit que malgré tout, l’amour triomphera.

Décembre arriva. Je pu enfin contempler le chemin parcouru en 12 mois, …52 semaines … 365 jours. Bref, en une année qui vient de s’écouler en un clin d’œil.

J’ignorais qu’au moment même où je célébrais ton arrivée, embrassant mes proches, je m’apprêtais à entrer dans une année qui allait me donner l’opportunité de commencer le premier jour du reste de ma vie.

2015 … Je te quitte … sur la pointe des pieds et du cœur, mais jamais ne t’oublierai.

Jamais.

Vidéo Sur les pointes par Allain Leprest. 

Picture is mine 

5 signs you are becoming an adult – Christmas time

ohohoh

Whether we like it or not … time passes and the cute baby we used to be, slowly transformed into a nice moody teenager and in the blink of an eye became this interesting creature known as ” An adult”.

I used to say ” I am so looking forward to grow up and be adult so I do not have to do homework and go to school”, but now that I think twice about it, I don’t concur with this no more.

If you are still in doubt as to whether you are an adult  or not – here is a list that may give you indications you are on the right path (YAY). In case this does not apply to you yet… don’t “panic” – it will come faster than what you think. This one is of course a Special Christmas (Let’s be “seasonal”)

  1. You bought an advent calendar but unlike you used to do when you were 7 years old … you really eat one chocolate per day, instead of eating all of them at once. 

That is a huge sign ! You are on the way of being reasonable and playing the game of the advent calendar. It is a BIG achievement.

Note : It is not written at the back of the advent calendar, but I made my own rules… Up to you if you want to follow them. When you are around the 22nd of December, we tend to go back to family, take a bit of holidays before it is actually Christmas day. So in that case, you may not be there to eat the chocolates # 22, # 23, #24. In that case, ONLY IN THAT CASE, it is commonly accepted that you can eat all of them at once. Up to you to decide if you want to eat them alone in the open space of your office, enjoying this guilty pleasure, OR if you are up for a good deed and share them with your colleagues and friends. 

2. You are able to provide an answer to the traditional question : What would you like for Christmas ? 

…Because over the past months you kept a list of things that could be a good idea for a Christmas present – “just in case someone asks you”

3. Spoiler alert – You do not believe in Santa Clause or “Father Christmas” anymore …  but you are the one making sure nobody in your family spoils this lovely legend in front of your youngest cousins, nephews, nieces. (That was such a lovely thought when being kid; and it is still cute to see the youngest one so into this legend)

4.  You may be the lucky one who has been picked by your mum, your Grand-Ma, your boss – to wear the Santa Claus costume and distribute presents  at home or during the company Christmas party this year. Ho Ho Ho

5. You have very good Gift wrapping skills – which makes you be the Official Gift Wrapper for the year … You therefore know all the presents people will be receiving (but as you may be also a great actor, you can totally play it the Actor Studio way : “Oh really you got the Frozen Costume ? What a surprise !!”)

Note :

ALWAYS double check when putting the name tag on the present. True story : During a Christmas I ended up having a boy swim suit and my brother a bikini. Kids are not good at poker face in general. Although I am always thankful for what I get, for this one – I did not know how I shall react, not wanting to hurt anyone or sound like a spoiled kid. 🙂 

All I want for Christmas is you

I feel it in my fingers, I feel it in my toes …

The count down until Christmas has definitely started, however the Christmas-y mood I usually sink in from December 1st up until the Christmas eve has not yet kicked-in. Not sure if this is because weather is still rather warm  or because I am “getting used to” it. I am kind of a “Christmas Veteran” about to celebrate my 29th 🙂

I can really not blame it on the Brits for not making efforts to have us prepared for Christmas: straight after Halloween, the witches hats, spooky skeletons and spider webs were replaced by snow flakes, red curtains and Santa Claus in pretty much every stores. Even at my local Starbucks … except that they forgot a tiny detail – they were still playing Bob Marley instead of the traditional Jingle Bells and other Deck the halls – creating a nice exotic atmosphere. 

Soon after the decorations come the usual Christmas rituals. 

Christmas is that time of the year when: 

  • People (including seasoned adults and senior colleagues from the office ) rush to buy an Advent calendar and would then carefully and diligently eat the daily chocolate that get them closer to “the D-day. So far, I spotted many Kinder fans and a small community of Hotel du Chocolat connoisseurs (So chic) 

  • There is an “unofficial” competition at the office as to who would have the kitchiest Christmas ornament at their desk. (Some ending up exceeding expectations.) 

  • All sorts of parties are thrown, ranging from the Ugly Christmas sweaters day; Christmas parties; Secret Santa … 

  • You can – with no guilt – spend your full week-ends watching (for the 10th time) the traditional Christmas movies, namely : Notting Hill, Love Actually, Bridget Jones – while drinking hot chocolate (with a dash of Baileys) and going for binge ice-cream “tasting” 

  • Some privileged members of the “I always do my Christmas shopping at the last moment – despite saying each year : Next time I will start earlier” group – end up spending the 2 last week ends before D-day, looking for the perfect gift. 

Continue reading

I believe I can fly : Bristol Balloon Fiesta

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If you tell people you live in UK or England, chances are that you will hear the traditional list of cliche used to depict this part of the world :

  • The bad weather and the rain ( .. well – not too far from reality)
  • The wrong legend that British food is not good and limited to Fish & Chips, Roast beef. UK actually has a lot of great food and recipes and I would need a full post to talk about all of them.

UK is also too often “reduced” to :

  • The city of London, Edinburgh, Manchester / Liverpool  if you are a fan of football
  • Queen Elizabeth, Kate Middleton, Harry and William and all the Royal family
  • Home of Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, Shakespeare … you name it

All this to say that in the South West of England, there is a lovely city called Bristol which has A LOT to offer to put an end to the cliche people may have about England ( besides the rain thing … Yes – I must admit that quite often, it is pouring in Bristol).

Bristol is home to a great arts and overall culture scene, lovely food, cute coffee shops and summer/ spring festivals. From May until September, when the nice days kick-in, you will be able to find a festival pretty much every week-end. One that I particularly enjoy is the Bristol Balloon Fiesta that happens every year in August, in Ashton Court*. If you like Hot Air Balloon or want to spend a nice week-end with family and friends, this festival is for you, so make sure to spend few hours there if you are around.

What is the Bristol Balloon Fiesta?

It is an international Festival, featuring several hundreds of flights of Hot Air Balloons, and welcoming thousands of visitors over 3 days. On top of the balloons flights, the festival features 2 night glows, and a firework on the Saturday night. ( See the video of the night glow)

There is also a Fairground with lots of attractions for kids and adults. You will find wine and local food stands, local music talents. Long story short, everyone should be able to find attractions to be entertained during this festival.

The Bristol Balloon Fiesta is free and open to public.

It goes without saying that if you want to fly during the Balloon Fiesta, you would have to book in advance your flight. Note that prices to fly during this event are (for me) excruciatingly high compared to the prices that are practiced the rest of the year.

For me the best way to enjoy this festival is to go to Ashton Court in the mid-afternoon on Saturday, to enjoy a nice picnic with friends until the night kicks in, so you can see the night glows and the firework.

My advice if you want to go to the Balloon Fiesta :

Access by car is NOT recommended. There will be hundreds of cars and if you want to avoid being stuck for 2 hours to do less than 3 kms… avoid taking the car ( especially to leave after the firework, I REALLY do not recommend it.) There are buses services arranged for the event, and if you can come by foot – it is for me the best option.

Be prepared to see A LOT of people around. If you are with kids, or buggies : this may be a bit of a challenge. However, you do not need to go to Ashton Court itself if you want to see the shows or the balloons flying. You can have a great view from Clifton, or the White Lion Terrace  – so depending on your situation and whether you like crowds or not so much – you have several options available to you so you can enjoy this event.

The success of this event relies a lot on the weather:

  • If there is too much wind : balloons will not fly. As the whole point of this festival is to see those hundreds of balloons flying … it can be a bit of a non-event if they are to stay on the ground.
  • If it is rainy, the picnic and event in the park can be a bit challenging ( but not impossible) : back to 2014, it rained pretty much the whole afternoon and night but we were still able to see the night glows and the firework. We were blessed with a nice and dry summer in 2015 and the event was simply great.

Bring cash if you want to buy food or drinks ( but you can also bring your own picnic) , take sunscreen with you : when the sun kicks in, it can be quite strong and you could end up with a nice sunburn if you are not well prepared.

I really like this Festival because for 3 days you will see the Bristol sky full of balloons, which I found very pleasant and “romantic”. I also love to get to the festival on the Saturday afternoon to picnic with my friends  : it is a great moment to be all together, catch up and chill … one of the many little, simple pleasures in life.

If you need any additional reasons to go to Bristol  :

  • The street artist Banksy is said to be from Bristol : you can find a lot of his famous graffiti all over the city, including Naked Man,Mild Mild West, Girl with the Pierced Eardrum … (You can even see more if you walk around or go for the Banksy Tour organized by the city)
  • Bristol is the Europe Green Capital for 2015
  • We have amazing coffee bars, such as Brew, Bristol Coffee House, Spicer & Cole…
  • There are many lovely food places and restaurants which will put an end to the legend saying that UK food is not good or limited to roast beef, fish & chips, jelly puddings …
  • The great singer George Ezra is said to have studied and lived in Bristol for a while,

Ashton Court* :  

Ashton Court is a huge park (850 acres), with gardens, a mansion and many grasslands. There, you can walk, bike (but again I do not recommend you bike during the Balloon Fiesta), bring the kids over to play and enjoy outdoors.There is no admission fee to enter the park (But you may have to pay to take part to events organized at Ashton Court) There is a parking – it costs £1.20 per vehicle per day.

Like a rolling stone ….

like a rolling stone

It was supposed to be a post about Dubrovnik, Croatia and its treasures, but as I laid down my thoughts, it went in a totally different way than initially planned.

Dubrovnik is a charming host. A perfect place for a 3 days break. The narrow streets of the old town are calling you, so you go and get yourself “lost” in the city.

You will wander and discover gardens full of lemons and orange trees; come across the music school and if you are lucky enough you can hear the student playing the piano and rehearsing opera songs; you will stumble upon sleepy lazy cats who have nothing to do but enjoying the heat of the sun.

How nice is it, to have nothing to do but enjoying simple moments of life as they unfold on your path ?!

The Dubrovnik experience would not be complete without enjoying a glass of crisp white wine while doing people watching from a terrace : one of the many definitions of happiness for me. 

Day 2 in Croatia, I ended up having to change my initial exploration plans due to stormy weather. “Ciao” the excursion on the lovely islands : no boats would sail the wavy sea… I therefore used this free time to enjoy even more terraces and people watching. It gave me plenty time to “reflect” upon life, travels and any other topics a “20 and something” years old girl would be interested into.

Whilst the change in my travel plans was definitely not a problem, I could not help drawing a parallel between this and a very recent and sudden personal life change. I tend to be a bit skeptical about influential post on Facebook or other social media, but I realized that one of the most recent I read, stating “Nothing in your life should be taken for granted” was a very wise one.

Plans, promises and commitments deemed to be “unsinkable” can vanish when you expect it the least. The good thing is that most of the time, it is only be for the best – giving us an opportunity to reconsider options and opening our eyes to experiences we would have not have thought about otherwise.

I could not help thinking about Bob Dylan’s song, Like a rolling stone : “How does it feel, To be on your own, Like a complete unknown, like a rolling stone?”

And what if the answer was: Simply great?

10 signs you are becoming “adult”

Rouge Gorge

 

I was puzzled with the title for this post. I picked the one which is probably the closest to what I want to express. You may find yourself in some of the below statements. J

1. You have plants at home and they are still alive 3 months after you bought them.
And on top of it, you take good care of them, including watering them REGULARLY and making sure they get exposed to the sun on a regular basis.

2. You start to cook some “fancy” dish, such as Asparagus/Goat cheese and chilli flakes frittata, home-made risotto, key lime cheesecake…

3. You think that Queen, Elton John, and Billy Joel were/are TRUE artists compared to the disposable pop music we hear on radio today.

4. There is not a day without seeing one of your college friends announcing on Facebook that they are “engaged, getting married or expecting a baby”

5. You prefer going for a drink listening live music bands or chilling in a lounge bar rather than throwing shots of Jägermeister all night long in a club.

6. You became more “reasonable” when it comes to party and drinking, afraid at the horrible hang over and headache expecting you the day after.

7. Your definition of “old” is in “permanent draft”
When you were 8, someone who was 30 was “old”
At 15, someone who was 50 was “old”
At nearly 30, you think that 60 is the new 30 ….

8. There is some healthy and fresh food in your fridge : spinach, kale, ginger (plus other vegs you ignored the existence 2 years ago). You try to have at least once per week a “greens’ juice” …. because yes on top of it, you are the happy owner of a juicer 😉

9. You throw yourself some challenges like : “get  a six-pack before turning 30” ; “do a marathon before I am 40”; “visit all the continents with my better half before considering getting married or pregnant (or both)” It goes without saying this applies to women only 😉  

10. You take yourself less seriously than where you were a teen or in your early 20s. You realize how life is amazing and precious, and make most of the moments you spend.

Picture is mine. I saw this little bird and I was just finding him super cute… Yes, I noticed that as I am growing older I tend to appreciate much more simple life moments and it makes me feel good.