A 2018 recap and what’s to come in 2019

As the year comes to a close, it becomes unavoidable to reflect back on what’s been going on; the highs, the lows, the struggles, amazing opportunities and key turning points that detoured my path off its course.

As I mentioned in a previous article, having a clear idea of where you’re heading is key for not getting lost on unexpected detours at every fork in the road. A great way to see with more clarity where I’d like to go is to take a moment to reflect back on the past, to better understand what’s worked for me, what hasn’t and what I’d like more of in my life.

Plus, I figure that doing this recap article is a cool way to get to know each other a bit better. I blab on so much about my views of the world, tools I’ve picked up along my journey and really deep topics like internal connection, relationships and being true to yourself. Yet, I’ve been thinking that maybe we still don’t know each other very well on a personal level.

So I’d like to give you a bit of a glimpse into my world, my personal world, not my online blogging world, which I must confess, do run parallel.

I’d like to start by telling you about some of 2018’s highest peaks and lowest dips.

I quit my job

I wrote about this back in July and you can read more about it here, but basically, I couldn’t keep “working for the man”. It started to feel as though my workplace was sucking out my soul like Dementors were lurking around in my office all day.

I was being bullied by collaborators while superiors held my hands behind my back. While I struggled to stay afloat mentally, physically and with the workload I was being given, all they cared about was budgets, deadlines and their own assess.

I couldn’t survive in this type of world anymore.

This is me, hard at work. Ya ok, it was fun filming videos of digestive systems processing pasta, but it, unfortunately, wasn’t how I spent most days.

It’s important for me to feel as though my work day contributes to the well-being of the world. And unfortunately, the red tape, greed, bureaucracy and traditional, conservative and vertical structure of the company didn’t allow me to feel as though my contribution mattered. I was being pushed to produce, so that “the man” could earn more money, to sit high on his throne.

All the while, the rest of the world didn’t benefit from this dynamics. Not me, my fellow workmates, the community or the world at large.

Project development mode: on

In March I started this blog. In July I quit my job, with the intention of starting my own thing. The thing is, it wasn’t completely clear to me what I wanted to start. And although with each step I take, the picture becomes clearer, the adventure’s destination is still unknown.

Since July, I’ve been working on a few different projects.

  • I organized and hosted my first Wilderness Wellness Weekend at the beginning of this month. It was an amazing experience that I got to share with 7 other lovely ladies out in the mountains of Madrid.
  • I also restarting giving yoga classes, both privately and in collaboration with a local organization called Madrid for Refugees.
  • And finally, I’ve been developing the first course that will be offered on You Choose the Way. If you’ve been struggling with pivoting into a new life direction, stay tuned for more info about Dare to Pivot. The course will be launched very soon! Make sure to sign up for the newsletter to stay informed about dates, deals, and details about this new project.
wilderness wellness weekend retreat
The beautiful setting of our Wilderness Wellness Weekend.

Life changing courses

As a life-long learner, in times of pivot, it’s natural for me to want to expand my knowledge base. And having been such a transitional year, it’s inevitable that I’d partake in a few important courses. This year there were 2 that really stand out, plus one topic with a more ongoing learning process.

  • As a certified yoga teacher, we can take short specialization courses to expand our understanding of yoga. And so, in July I took a specialization course in meditation. As meditation has become such an integral part of my life, I wanted to learn how to better share that knowledge with others.
  • I went on a 2-week course in a tiny isolated eco-village in the Pyrenees Mountains. The course connected 3 topics that I love in a beautiful and seamless way. We talked Buddhism (not as a religion, but as a way of life; meditation, confronting suffering, attachment, etc.), personal development and how to use tools from those fields to make the world a better place and build happier and healthier communities and organizations. This was an extremely powerful and tranformational course.
  • Creating an online business has come with tons of new learning opportunities. As a bit of an old-school Granny, I naturally shy away from all the new, modern social media platforms and innovative digital tools. But throughout the year, I’ve been getting informed. I’ve joined groups (online and offline), taken courses, asked questions, got frustrated, found answers on almost a daily basis. I’ve started to finally wrap my head around (in a basic way) the whole world of online marketing and creating an online business.
The stunningly calming and captivating valley from the eco-village in the Pyrenees Mountains.

Getting sick

In April this year, I got quit sick. So much so that I had to take time off work. Although this was a tough time, it really helped me put into perspective what I want and don’t want out of life.

It was this situation that helped convince me that I needed to quit my job and give my dream of working for myself a try. Even if it’s scary, it’s not as scary as being trapped in a context that was making me miserable.

As I always say, shitty times always have a silver lining. You just gotta learn to find it.

My biggest 2018 struggle

I’ve been living in Madrid for 5 years now. That is 3 years longer than I’ve lived anywhere since I first left my hometown at 22. As a natural gallivanter, I spent my 20s fully indulging in a life of constant change. (Check out this article if you want to read more about my decade of travel.)

Retiro park in Madrid
Beautiful Madrid

Although I loved it, by the time I entered my 30s my heart starting yearning for a bit of stability. Five years later, and here I am, still in Madrid, allowing the roots to take place, and settling myself into a more conventional life.

Although that comes with plenty of amazingly beautiful aspects, as someone who has spent most of my adult life wandering around so much, it definitely also comes with some adjustments.

This year, the biggest of these hurdles came in the form of long-term community building conflicts. I was abruptly confronted by a need to surround myself with more people who understood my goals, my dreams and my path. Don’t get me wrong, I’m extremely lucky to be very well surrounded here. I have an amazing partner, great friends, and am lucky to maintain strong bonds with my family and friends back home. But as my life starting taking a new shape this year, I more often craved the company of like-minded folks.

While at the life-changing course in the Pyrenees Mountains, I realized that depriving myself of a strong community of people who understand and push me forward deeper onto my true path in order to avoid insulting or disvaluing my existing community, wasn’t doing anyone any favors.

My plan for 2019

My drawing board is currently quit full. In the next few months, I’ll be:

  • Launching my first course, Dare to Pivot.
  • Taking some courses of my own in coaching and NLP.
  • Amplifying the tools and services I offer on You Choose the Way.
  • Planning other Wilderness Wellness Weekends.
  • Taking my work on the road to spend a few months on a mega motorcycle adventure with my man.

Although it may seem like I already have a lot on my plate, I still have other ideas in the pipelines.  But for now, these are the most important.

I don’t usually do a word of the year, but this year whether I want to officially choose a word or not, COMMUNITY is what is most dancing around in my brain. I want to focus my time and effort of building and strengthening new and existing online and offline communities.

That being said, I recently starting a Facebook group to go hand-in-hand with my new course, called Dare to Pivot as well. Through this community, I’d like to offer people a space to come to connect with others who are also shifting into new, sometimes less conventional, directions. If this sounds like a community you’d like to be part of, come join!

With all that, I’m excited to get started with 2019! This year was hard, beautiful and transitional, but I’m eager for those words to keep coming along for the ride. Nice and easy just isn’t my style.

Enjoy the holidays and I hope you kick off the New Year surrounded by love, joy and peace in your heart.

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