How we helped Fundación Danny in its endeavor to make language learning accessible for more children in Colombia.
We are all busy. Strenuously busy. Constantly gasping for air. Always tired. Sometimes depressed. Rarely happy. Eternally stressed out. The bottom line is that we are slowly becoming robots. Sentient, faulty robots that need “reprogramming” and are nothing more than the creation of the modern times. The modern times that supposedly made our lives easier but cut our connection to our inner and true selves.
The question is “how do we become genuine human beings again, how do we thrive when social pressure suffocates us?”. And honestly, this isn’t even about a simple or a complicated process that you will have to follow. This is about being observant of your own actions and having willpower; this is about learning to love and cherish the simple things in life, the things that have nothing to do with social status, power over others or reputation. For now, we have only one life we can enjoy. Why waste it? Why throw away our emotions because society says so?
The dehumanization process is an illusion. You deserve to thrive and be happy. Explore, understand and implement these 9 – and a half! – tips in your life and things will change sooner than expected.
1. You are a human being, not a human doing
We seem to be forgetting that as we run towards complete exhaustion. Our schedule is packed, but our souls empty. René Descartes once said “I think, therefore I am”, but as modernity absorbed our lives, existence became conditioned by work and meaningless actions.
Even worse is the fact that we proudly teach our children to become human doings from a very young age: “My kid has school at 8, ballet at 3, homework at 4, piano at 5, tennis at 6:30 and karate lessons at 7:15. I’m so proud!”. Childhood is magic and we are cruel.
But this is what you should know: time passes frighteningly quickly and routine kills creative minds. Don’t overwork yourself. Get out. Enjoy long walks. Steal smiles. And lose your heart only to that work that matters. The one that makes you feel closer to your happier, inner self. Treat yourself your kindness and your mind will always pay you back.
2. Don’t get too attached to a place
Never. Home is not a place. Home is a feeling. If you feel like your heart is in Denmark, then move to Denmark. You are never too young or too old to start over. The perfect time is now. Break the walls of your comfort zone and run, Forest, run!
In fact, this whole world is your home. Explore it. Feel it. And don’t get attached. You’ll regret it later.
Reason doesn’t love acting on impulse, but your future thriving life will do. I for one left the capital for a smaller, more beautiful city. Safety was not something I felt, but 3 months later I had a job and a bike for wandering. And, as you very well know… Not all those who wander are lost.
3. Learn a new language and use it in your travels
It doesn’t matter if you don’t speak like a native yet. Use an intuitive app like Mondly and learn just enough to break the communication barrier. It will help you speak your mind and broaden your cultural horizons.
A thriving life is about not having preconceived opinions in a multicultural world. Love and accept others, discover new cultures and be a part of them. Speak, ask, learn from experience and enrich your mind and soul.
You’ll probably tell me you need money to travel. So here’s your answer: use momondo or any other smart website to pick a cheap flight. Get there and the rest will simply follow. Try couchsurfing at first and then freelancing to afford your own place. Don’t be afraid and live for once!
4. Allow yourself to dream
Don’t be scared of those big dreams you have. I used to think that dreaming will eventually fail into disappointments and frustration. But once I realized their real strength, I got courageous.
The most important thing is to change your dreams into objectives. Step by step. Bigger and bigger. Take patience by your side and follow your biggest dream carefully. Set smaller objectives but never forget your main goal. Work hard and believe fiercely in it.
This will not only motivate you, it will also renew your view of life. You’ll have more energy, determination and optimism by your side.
5. Stop rushing to nowhere
You are always running. But where to? Do you really wish for days to go by faster? Don’t worry about the future. Future will eventually become present without you worrying about it.
Slow down and enjoy the good, the bad and the ugly and, if possible, search for the silver lining when it’s needed. Never let negative events consume you to the point where you’d wish days should go by faster.
Stop cursing that bus you lost and walk to next station. We lose precious details when we are in a hurry. Take your time and leave out the stress. There’s always an option that does not involve stress. You know it. Your healthy heart will thank you.
6. Inhale. Exhale. Meditate.
How many hours do you spend in a day with your self? Not spending enough time with your inner, deeper self will eventually lead to you losing access to it. This is not what you think. Stop for a second. Try not to think of anything. Can you? Isn’t there a voice that keeps talking nonsense in your head? Try to stop it. You can’t. Here’s where meditation helps at it breaks the robotic circuits.
Your talkative, annoying inner voice will shut up and you will finally rest peacefully.
Take a break, a deep breath and contemplate your thoughts and emotions. Rediscover meditation as an act of catharsis.
7. Take care of your body
I’m sure this is nothing new for you: eating healthy and exercising once in a while can work wonders. Your brain is oxygenated, your energy levels high and your body happy.
Doing this will not only influence your physical appearance, but it will also help you feel better with yourself.
Besides, eating your favorite unhealthy food only occasionally will feel like a mighty gift from the holy gods of food!
8. Surround yourself with the right people
And better yet: surround yourself with positivity. We are extremely social beings for a reason. Spending time with people – especially positive ones – it’s good for our poor, little souls.
Choose these people carefully. If they have a contagious smile and tell wise – and real – stories with deeper meanings when it’s necessary they are already ideal. And their flaws? Their flaws make them unique.
Avoid those who won’t stop talking about themselves, their problems and how you are always wrong when doing this and that. They will break you if you are not strong enough. But, on the other side, if you are strong enough, you will be able to help them discover the thriving life.
9. Embrace nature
Bare with me. It’s almost over!
Nature fills you with a lot of great energy. So walk or run in the park as soon as possible. Go hiking, climb mountains and lose your mind in the infinite blue of the sky. That’s pure medicine.
9 1/2. Concentrate more on being genuinely happy
As I promised, I’m sharing 9 and a half! tips with you. This is not some kind of trick. I simply believe that this final tip is somehow obvious here, at this end of this story.
So… yeah. Concentrate more on being happy! Forget about proving yourself to your boss or the social pressure to act in some specific way. Just be that someone your inner self wants you to be. That someone that would laugh at a bad joke, pet random dogs on the street, make spontaneous, crazy travel plans or cry watching those last scenes of The Lord of The Rings. It doesn’t matter what they think. You matter!
Feeling inspired? Make the first step towards a thriving life and learn a new language to use it in your travels!