Posts Tagged With: content

Looking back after 3 years in Kiwiland

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Stubborn Adventure

Stubborn, sensitive and impatient, these characteristics are all known to me. I see them as strengths, they have brought me where I am today: New Zealand. Three years ago, I stepped on a plane to follow my heart with two suitcases filled with clothes and shoes. What else do you need? I said goodbye to my dear family and friends. My mum was crying, I wasn’t this time, since after being separated for six months; I was finally going to see my love again. All the preparations were finished, I was going to step on a plane and start a new adventure. I couldn’t wait! A one-year-try out, that was the plan. We had hardly been together since the first time we met. He went off to China and I went off to Africa. After 4 months I finally came back in The Netherlands and in the meantime he had booked his one-way ticket to New Zealand. We fell in love anyway and enjoyed our time together for the next two months. In the midst of a starting relationship, when the butterflies are abundant and the love is intense, we had to say goodbye. He had made his decision to go back to his beloved New Zealand, a final short love affair would be a good way to end all his years in Holland, was the thought in the back of his mind. I don’t think he realised he was dating a pretty stubborn young lady, who was going to follow her heart, no matter where that would lead her.

Sensitive Challenge

Three years later, we have bought a house and I am teaching yoga and guiding people through inner Journey. I could never have imagined my life would be like this, if you would have asked me five years ago. I exchanged my pushbike for a car and my apartment for a spacious home with a bit of land, chickens and a veggie garden. I exchanged my busy life for a more back to earth relaxing lifestyle. My birthday is now in the middle of ‘winter’ and Christmas is celebrated on the beach. I have exchanged the plenty of good shopping opportunities in Holland for plenty of beautiful quiet beaches in Northland. Lots of change and challenge have appeared for this sensitive soul and will still appear. When I was in my teenage years, I decided to get my driver license as the first one of my sisters. My parents were a bit surprised, their sporty, spiritual, environment friendly daughter was going to get a driver license? Most of the time in my childhood we were without a car, we did everything by bicycle. I really treasure those memories, of our special cosy family. I have never been a fan of driving a car, although I really love my car now, especially on a rainy cold day, so I stay warm and dry. My one secret reason to get my license, was the idea I had in the back of my mind: working in the midst of Africa doing development work and driving around in a jeep. I imagined myself making a real difference to the world, and to truly assist others living a better/happier/healthier life.

Finally feeling and finding love

After several trips to Africa, my eyes opened. Do I really make a difference? Why do I want to make a difference? Do I want to boost my ego? I realized I had so much more work to do on myself, before I was truly able to assist others. The people I met on my trips appeared to look more joyful and happy than the average European. Who needs to learn from whom? I realised that I was trying to do good, while my inner world was rumbling: insecure and restless. If you haven’t connected with the peace, quietness and contentment within you, how are you going to create more contentment in the world, outside you? The Journey was extremely helpful for me to live a more joyful, happy, content and truthful life. One of my last trips to Africa involved Journey Outreach: this was a rewarding, fun, challenging and interesting time. Doing journey work while in the so-called developing countries and my beloved Africa, would be the perfect combination. While occupied with travelling and where to go and live, my love suddenly arrived. As impatient as I am, I had been longing for romantic love for a long time and had written down plenty of pages in my diary on how my ideal partner would look like, behave and so on. I often doubted if I would ever meet the right guy. I promised myself, I would rather stay by myself than choose for a relationship that didn’t feel 100% truthful, fulfilling and happy.

Togetherness

We have learnt and experienced so much together. I can’t imagine living apart anymore. So yes, I would recommend everyone to follow your heart, no matter how scary, unknown, uncertain or awkward that might be. If you really trust your heart, your life will be an amazing journey. My uncertainty and doubts about work has completely disappeared when I decided to teach yoga and meditation. I feel immense grateful to be able to share my passion to follow your heart and live the life of your dreams. I believe that if I can assist in creating more inner peace in myself and others, I truly make a difference in the world. It is rewarding and so empowering to do and live your passion. My dear friends in Africa, I haven’t forgotten about you. My intention is to promote a more mindful way of living to benefit the whole world. Yes, I dream big. I hope to arrive again on African soil one day; to integrate my practice on and off my yoga mat. As a thank you for how Africa taught me to slow down, to appreciate the little things in life, to truly live like we are all connected as ONE.

I deeply bow to all the teachers in my life, especially to one of the most inspiring, wise, empowering and enormously missed woman in my life: my mum.

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Categories: Freedom, Happiness, Inspiration, Sharing, Yoga | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

You will die and pay tax

As we know life is full with changes, uncertainties and letting go’s. In fact, all is uncertain; your job, your marriage, your health, your passions and so on. As my father-in-law-to-be would say there are only two certainties in life: you will die and you pay tax. Though, most humans try to hold on to certain circumstances, people, jobs, ideals, objects. Or we are looking forward to have our lives changed soon, since we are not content in this moment. I’m no different from anyone else. I am afraid for change and sometimes a bit excited if the change includes a step forward. Yoga supports me to rest in this ‘unknowingness’, to trust life and to relax in my body, mind and spirit.  

Thoughts, doubts and worries

But sometimes I would like to run away from uncertainty and change. I want to know what is going to happen and how my life will look like. I want to prepare myself for the upcoming changes and more importantly I actually would like to know what I really want to do with my life. In terms of career, I am not really sure where I would like to go. I have my dreams, but I’ve doubts if it will work out, what the best way is to realize my dreams, if I’ve the guts to actually do it and if my dreams are really my dreams. Welcome to my mind and always existing thoughts, doubts and worries.

Being comfortable with discomfort

While practising yoga you can experience discomfort as well; your standing in chair pose (Utkatasana) and your legs are starting to ache and thoughts arise how long we’re going to stay in this pose. You would like to run away from this discomfort, you would like to change your pose. This situation encourages you to stay in the moment, to be with the discomfort, to be content in this moment. Happiness is not gained from future changes or by moving forward. Happiness is waiting for you, here in this moment.

I don’t know

I don’t know how my job situation will look like in a month’s time. I don’t know if I will be a Yoga Teacher in the end. I don’t know if I will continue writing. I don’t know if I’ll be living in New Zealand for the rest of my life. I don’t know if I will start a family in a couple of years. I don’t know if I’ll run out of money soon and so on. It can actually feel quite refreshing to realize you don’t know anything at all. My challenge is to rest in this unknowingness and to transform obstacles into challenges and opportunities. Don’t enjoy your job? See it as a possibility to explore other work areas and to discover your dreams.

Happy smiles

Are you moving to the other side of the world, far away from your family, friends and familiarity? See it as an opportunity to start all over again; make new friends, choose new careers, explore new sports and hobbies, improve your work-life balance. It is almost like you are born again, fresh. I feel very grateful I actually have this opportunity to start all over again. It sometimes feels a bit egocentric and at the same time I feel blessed to live in a beautiful country with a great partner and a good work-life balance. At these moments, I realize work doesn’t really matter that much. Work doesn’t have to influence my state of happiness. I think about all those big smiles I met on the faces of children in rural Africa. In a materialistic way, they have almost nothing, but in a spiritual way they are fortunate and blessed. Let’s count our blessings and BE content.    

Categories: Happiness, Inspiration, Yoga | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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