Hi guys! Hope you’re doing well wherever you are and whatever you’re going through.
I wanted to write a little bit about the importance of having a vision - that bigger image of what you’re aiming for and what you desire out of your life.
Actually, I was thinking about that a lot lately and I feel I should write it down mostly for myself, so that I can get back to this post and remind myself of why am I doing everything I’m doing at this point of my life....
So, spending the most of my days at lectures, writing assignments and memorizing a hell lot of stuff day by day can make me go pretty nuts sometimes and then I tend to ask myself - why am even doing this? Why am I struggling to get that useless piece of paper at the end that I don’t really value or care about?
Then it is time to go back to that bigger vision... The fact is that I really like what I’m studying, but it sure doesn’t mean that I enjoy every damn lecture or that I think that all of the assignments I get to write are helpful in any way. However, as I want to be a translator one day, I guess I have to go through all this shit, crappy courses and boring lectures to get to where I want to be and to have a little bit more freedom to set up my own rules and focus primarily on topics and parts that interest me the most.
Other thing that helps me to get my mindset in order about my studies is remembering why I am passionate about that area in the first place. Sometimes I even forget that I enjoy playing with languages and words while I am at Uni, because it somehow all becomes a chore and doesn’t ignite the same excitement within me as it used to do before.
Those are the moments when I take things in my own hands and try to reconnect with that passion that I know still lingers within me, but I just have to let it come back to the surface.
I study Italian and Portuguese, so when I need that “pump” to feel excited about my studies again, I take some books that I enjoy in those languages or I watch some fun movies or listen to my favourite Italian and Portuguese music... Actually, it doesn’t take much to reawake my affection for roman languages and very soon I am more motivated to study even those more scientific parts that I usually find so boring.
So... my advice to you, if you feel like losing motivation for your studies or job or whatever: REMEMBER YOUR BIGGER VISION - why did you start to do that thing in the first place? Where do you think it’ll take you? How is that thing necessary on your path to where you want to go?
If you realize that it really does fit in the grand scheme of things and that it is indispensable on the journey to your goal - find ways to make it more enjoyable and even just the simplest thing as keeping the bigger vision in your mind can make it seem more meaningful and less of a struggle.
This morning I went to woods for a walk - a thing that I love to do so much, but unfortunately don’t get to do that often lately. It is not that I don’t have time (if you know me, you’d know that the excuse of not having “enough time” to do anything is not an excuse, I believe that everything can get done if our priorities are in order), but with 1000 things I have on my calendar, if I don’t schedule even the most basic things like journaling, meditation and gym time, I may end up skipping them.
However, as I usually get affected by so-called “winter blues” when colder and gloomier days arrive, I make sure to soak in as much daylight and be surrounded with nature whenever I can. As I said before, sometimes it’s be woods near my house, sometimes I may go to the mountains, but most often it’ll be just half an hour reading in the city park. It doesn’t really matter, guys, the important thing is to spend at least 20 minutes in contact with nature, trees and natural sunlight. We may not be conscious about that, but it makes some real difference to our wellbeing - at the end, we are part of the nature ourselves, even though everybody seems to forget that nowadays.
Other than going outside and being in nature, other stuff that help me with getting throught cold days without falling into those dark mindsets are:
1) regular exercise
I know that it can be hard as fuck when you are freezing during first 10mins of your cardio, but trust me, it can help you SO MUCH
2) eating healthy and staying hydrated
teas are EVERYTHING during cold days
being honest with ourselves and pouring out daily all our thoughts and emotions on a piece of paper is extremely therapeutic and beneficial
sure you already know all about this one
If you google “winter blues” or “seasonal affective disorder” or something among those lines, you’ll always get more or less same pieces of advice as I gave you in this post. I used to get really frustrated after reading heaps of those articles, hoping to find about some magical quick-fix advice that will be able to help me without me doing much of the work. There’s no such thing, guys. I am sad to inform you, but if you want to feel good, you have to do your part of the equation. But, good news is that this advice, however obvious they seem, really work if you stick to them on the regular basis.
And at the end of the day, it is much easier and rewarding doing all this stuff and feeling energized than coping with seasonal depression one day after another, struggling to get on with your day every damn morning.
I hope some of you will find this helpful!
Lots of love and warm kisses :*
As soon as I first heard about the popular and widely used dichotomy to characterize someone’s personality - extrovert vs. introvert, it was clear as day that I belonged to the second category.
And I hated it.
Much of my growing up I was focused on changing that trait, wanting to become someone else, be that sociable, open and fun person that I so longed to be. And it was so damn draining.
I don’t believe that there is a strict line between being an extrovert and being an introvert, as our personalities are very fluid and change with time, gained experiences and growth that occurs as its consequence. However, we can all probably relate to one side of the spectrum.
It seems that nowadays extroverts get it better and are more valued in our society. At least I see it that way, correct me if I am wrong. Introverts, on the other hand, are often labeled as anti-social, loners and living in their own little world. These are all generalizations and the truth is kind of different, although it fluctuates as well, as we are all so different and unique.
I guess what I didn’t like about being categorized as an introvert was that list of unattractive traits such as “anti-sociable”, “shy”, “loner”, etc.
However, there came the moment in my life when I got so sick and tired of constantly trying to prove to myself and others to be something that I am not - that I just gave up.
Fuck it. Hope I’ll get it better in the next lifetime.
And what happened, once I embraced my “introversy” instead of pushing it away and resisting it - a whole new world of self-awareness opened up for me and I learned so much about myself.
I learned that all of those “common personality traits” are more or less bullshit
I learned that I like being surrounded by people - but! in limited amounts of time
and I learned that having a daily me-time when I get to be alone with myself is crucial for my wellbeing.
I can’t emphasize enough how my life became easier once I stopped resisting and just gave in and embraced certain parts of me. What you resist, persists, they say. I guess there’s some truth in that.
If you are constantly tired and drained, if in your everyday life there’s more struggle than ease - I challenge you to look inside. Are you afraid to acknowledge your true-self and show it to the world? Are you in the state of resistance to something?
I know that it is hard and that the path of self-acceptance may be painful as fuck to some of us that were brought up in households where we were used to put up the mask to just get by day by day - but it doesn’t have to be that hard. It is only as hard as you decide to be, it is only hard if you resist it.
Open up and acknowledge yourself.
Lots of love
It was one of those instant-made loves, that happen in a fraction of a second, that appear in us as early as with the very first glance, and grow bigger with every word, every look, every moment shared together...
It was 6th July - the day we landed in Porto, Portugal. Country that I was so eager to visit, as I already knew quite a lot about it (being a student of Portuguese language and literature) and was excited to finally have the opportunity to test my speaking skills in real-life circumstances.
However, the thing I didn’t expect was to fall so madly in love with it.
I’ve traveled quite a lot for my age and saw all sorts of magnificent places, amazing cities and lovely sceneries. Even though Porto maybe wouldn’t be at the top of the most beautiful places I’ve seen, there is something about that city that attracts me so much that I decided to go live there.
I can’t quite explain that sudden affection and strong desire, almost kind of need to move there for a period of time. Obviously, it isn’t very possible to happen right away, but next September I’ll hopefully start my master degree programme in translating at Faculdade de Letras de Porto.
I read somewhere long time ago that there is a belief that each of us, no matter where we entered this physical form of our bodies, has a place in the world that they are connected with, that is something like their “soul’s place” and resonates perfectly with them on a deep vibrational level. I cannot know whether that’s true or not, but what I know is that I feel a pretty intense urge to go live there and I’m just gonna go with it.
I may not know where it’ll take me or for how long I’ll stay there, but, just for once, you know, I wanna lean into that gut-feeling and surrender to my intuition because, looking back, it always brought me just amazing stuff, as opposed to what happened when I blindly accepted pieces of advice of the logical part of myself.
“Do you want to be successful?” J, my boyfriend, asked me the other day.
“Yes, sure.” I responded. “Everybody does, right?”
I saw that he was a little hesitant about my assumption, and said that he’s not really into chasing that success-thing, that all that money and fame don’t really resonate with him.
Then I realized we weren’t talking about the same thing.
What do you think of when hearing the word “success”?
At this point of my life, I see success as being surrounded by people that lift your energy, that you love and appreciate, doing the job that lights you up inside out, that makes you get regularly into that magical flow that pulls you out of time and space and throughout that dedication to your craft be able to serve the world and give back, using your unique gifts and talents.
I think it is important to reevaluate once every now and than the definitions we give to certain words. Are those definitions ours or we blindly accepted definitions society imposed upon us? Now, I am not talking just about success. Look out other words that are regularly part of your vocabulary or highly prioritized on your life-goals list. We all want happiness, good relationships, abundance - but what these words mean to you? What “happiness” presents to you? And let me tell you, there is no right and wrong definitions, all are true to the degree that you feel them true to yourself. There would be billion definitions of the same word as each of us is so damn complex and irreplaceable. And once you defined a word for yourself, don’t get attached to your definition. We, humans, like to put labels on things, categorize and put everything in precise order. However, change inevitably arises and sometimes we tend to freak out as we feel losing control (that, btw, never existed other than the illusion we made in our mind). Accept that you are a fluid being, that you change with every breath you take and so do your values, your desires, your goals and definitions.
Define stuff for yourself and accept definitions given by others ONLY if they resonate with you, but remember to let them be free, let them change as you change, let them be the reflection of your values at the certain moment in time accepting the fact that they may change, grow and expand and that there is literally anything wrong with that.
As I was walking back home from the fitness class I took up this summer while in my hometown, I came to a scary and mind-blowing realization: it was the first time in last 7 years that I went on my training make-up free.
Yeah, I know, it is kind of gross, but that’s just how it is.
I started wearing make-up when I was 13. It was just foundation as my parents didn’t allow me to put anything else at such a “young age” and I was getting a bit of breakouts and starting to feel a lot of self-conscious at that time - so, yeah, they gave me their blessing to buy my first foundation.
I don’t know what happened since then, I guess I just used to see myself in the mirror with my imperfections covered and less visible, so I wore it everywhere and anytime. I started to develop a form of anxiety to be seen in public with my “real face on”. It is little fucked up when you think about it.
First time it struck me how sick my relationship with make up was was after a sleepover at my friend’s, when I woke up and came into kitchen where there were already some people awake and having breakfast and I was like: “Sorry guys that you have to see me like this, I haven’t put my make up on yet.”
Moment later I was - what the fuck was that?? Why I have to excuse myself for the face I was born with? Even if I don’t have that porcelain tan and a few spots every now and then? Do I really offend someone with just, you know, being me and showing up with this body and face that I was born into?
I realized then that I need a reality check and a break from wearing make-up constantly, but just couldn’t find the right moment (and courage, let’s be real) to do that challenging task.
Until I was forced to.
So, as I mentioned earlier this summer, I went on Camino de Santiago with my boyfriend, which means we walked every day for around 25kilometers, often under the sun, getting all sweaty and smelly - so wearing a foundation in those circumstances would be really, really idiotic and superbad for my skin.
I took a deep breath and did it. First few days I was feeling shitty when I’d catch a glimpse of my clear face in mirror, just because I was unused to it, but after just some time it got so much better. Like my skin was SO happy, it started to get that healthy glow that I haven’t seen in such a long time and cleared up so much as well.
I am really grateful to have been forced to go make-up free for a month, because even now, as I came back from my traveling I don’t wear foundation. I don’t say I won’t do it EVER AGAIN, but I feel comfortable as well without it. I put some mascara and lipstick and I definitely like to explore make-up as I see it as a form of artistic expression and find it really fun, but I want to enjoy it and feel free while doing it, not be a slave of it. Or of anything else, for that matter.
How do you feel about wearing make-up? I’d like to hear if someone else has had some similar experience!
This summer I spent a fair amount of time in my hometown, the place that for already four years now doesn’t represent “home” to me. (Did it ever represent?)
Since I moved to Zagreb for Uni, I came back just occasionally, literally when I had to (Christmas & similar) and always stayed for just a couple of days.
It always makes me feel so strange to come back.
As soon as the bus enters the station I can feel my stomach getting tense and my breath shorten. My mind gets kind of foggy while I walk those dirty streets that watched me age, that heard my laughter and soaked in my tears, that gave me shelter when things at home were rough, saw my first kisses and gave comfort when my heart got broken. Every inch of the city bursts with memories, has a story, holds a part of me - some parts are beautiful and lovely and some still hurt. I got a chance to get away from there just when things got so much worse in my personal life and even though we can’t really escape our minds, I guess I suppressed all that hurt, all anger and broken screams, I buried them in the dark corners, empty parks and grey streets of my hometown, leaving it all behind before I got the chance to say goodbye.
These last weeks I decided to soften, to open up, to let all that dirt come up and fill me in order to be able to let it all go... Those are all just stories, at the end. Past experiences that were somehow necessary on my journey, necessary in making me the person I am today.
My view cleared up a bit. It is just a city, at the end. Buildings, streets, people and the sea. It could have been any other city. It isn’t its fault.
Maybe one day I’ll be able to feel the gratitude towards it.
For now I am just letting it go and forgiving.
Forgiving those buildings, those streets, those people and that sea.
And forgiving myself, as well.
Walking the Camino de Santiago was on my bucket list for a long time, ever since I first read about it and immediately got so drawn and inspired by the idea. However, it seemed like one of those things that, you know, “I’ll do one day when...” And than you maybe do it and maybe not.
BUT, strange and awesome situations and circumstances got together and it manifested faster than I could have ever imagined! I did my first Camino with my boyfriend this summer and I can firmly say that it was the most intense and amazing time of my life. I may write about it in other post(s) as there is so much to tell and there are many angles and aspects of the Camino I’d like to touch, so let me leave it aside for a moment and I'll get back to it another time...
This post was meant to be about the End of the World.
So, even though the official end of the Camino is the cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, many pilgrims decide to continue on walking (or talking a bus if u r short on time or simply a lazy bitch as us) to the Finisterrae, or how the local galego people call it - Fisterra.
I am so glad we went there, because it was SO WORTH IT.
Even though the town is small (should I be calling it a “town”??) and there’s not much to do and see, the energy it radiates is amazing. The place is full of pilgrims, travelers and adventurers eager to share their stories with whoever wants to listen. There’s also a great chill-down atmosphere as that is, let’s be honest, all you want to do after walking 300+ kilometers: chill, lay on the beautiful sandy beach, watch sunsets and sunrises and just let that sense of accomplishment on finishing the Camino overflow your whole being.
Finisterrae is Latin for “end of the world”. If you are somewhat ignorant or common knowledge deprived as I am (I might be exaggerating a bit, but my history and geography knowledge is far below basic) you may not know that before the discovery of America, Finisterrae was considered to be the westernmost place of the world (wrongly, tho) and therefore its end.
We know a little bit more about the world nowadays, but I have to admit that you can totally get that “end of the world” feeling while watching those strong waves crashing into the breath-taking rocky shore while chilly wind messes up with your hair and you are kind of cold and irritated, but at the same time amazed and filled with respect towards the Nature, Universe, Force....whatever you call it.
Man, I felt so small and fragile and so connected to everything around me at the same time. Guess you just have to experience it for yourself to get what I am talking about. Enjoy the pictures and I catch up with you soon ;)