When I was 27, I navigated from Santorini, Greece to San Remo, Italy by myself, without speaking Italian or Greek.
My trip included sleeping on the floor of an overcrowded boat, two trains, a bus, a flight, another train, falling asleep on said train and missing my stop and then taking a very expensive taxi ride at 1 am to get to my hotel.
As I type this from our snug little apartment in Minnesota, this sounds like a grand adventure and a badge of scrappiness. At the time, it was so, so, so stressful.
It’s hard to sell all your worldly belongings and relocate to a new country. It’s frustrating to navigate buses in a country where you don’t speak the language.
It’s not easy to start your life over after a breakup, furnishing a new life from scratch on one income.
But, at the risk of sounding like your mom, that feeling of frustration? That’s what personal growth feels like.
Those challenges? Once you make it through alive (which, if you’re reading this, you have) that’s what adventure feels like. This is where you become a smarter, stronger, kinder person. Those experiences are what “Tell me again!” stories are made of. These are the spaces where we grow.
Growth doesn't usually happen during the sweetest, rosiest times in our lives. Click To Tweet It’s when things get hard that we’re forced to look at things with new eyes, to try new approaches, to dig a little bit deeper into what we’re capable of and think about what we really want.
So that break up you’re going through,
that lay-off from the job you weren’t that into,
this time in your life when you’re eating ramen or beans and rice,
let’s choose to believe that these experiences really are making us better, more interesting people.As cheesy as it sounds, some day you'll view this as the moment you really figured out who you were, when you finally learned that lesson, when you embraced the adventure. Click To TweetIf nothing else, all this will make for a great story.
What are some of the struggles you faced that made you who you are today? What did you learn from them?
I grew up in rural Minnesota, in a town of 2,000 people which means I a) can entertain myself and b) am not snotty at all. I also sold my worldly belongings and moved countries five (!) times, which has made me a great packer and very, very unattached to my belongings.