I haven’t written in a while. The reason is because I haven’t been sure of what to write about. My emotions have been flying all over the place lately, and they never seem to stay put long enough for me to understand them myself, much less articulate them to other people. I started embracing something that I learned in yoga meditation – when trying to quiet the mind, acknowledge the feelings and observe them. Don’t pass judgement on them, just let them flow through you. So, instead of trying to pin down my feelings, I have just been observing them as they pass through me.
We have also been taking it easy as Grant completely recovers from his bouts with illness. We have been taking care of each other and staying in Barcelona, resting up! He is almost completely recovered now.
Moving abroad – being in a place totally separated from everything and everyone I define myself by – has stripped down layers I didn’t even know I had around the core me. I am deciding who I want to be – how I want to behave and what I want to do with my free time. There have been so many opportunities that is is hard to focus.
What you gonna spend your free life on?
Characteristics to cultivate
I have certainly learned a lot about myself. There are a few character traits that I want to develop and learn more about because these are weak spots for me.
Humility – not being too proud to ask for help, not believing that I can do it all, letting go of control over everything, taking risks without worrying about failure
Patience – being able to roll with it when it all falls apart, dealing with disappointment, not hurrying so much to the next thing that I miss the now, having patience with other but starting with patience for myself
Perspective – realizing no experience, no person, nothing in this world will ever fully make me happy; how little material things matter!
Skills to cultivate
I have also narrowed in on what I want to put my time & energy towards. Here is a sketch showing my various goals & pursuits (as of now):
At the center is travel. Ultimately, experiencing many different places, cultures, and peoples is why we decided to take time off. Next week, Grant and I are taking a sailing course which will teach us how to be crew members on a boat. Our ultimate hope is that we will able to do some sailing on our own eventually.
There are many creative pursuits that I have started to go after:
- Screen printing (which I have started classes for)
- Cross stitching (pictured below is my first attempt at lemons)
- Jewelry making (most interested in laser cut rubber & leather and was recently inspired by this beautiful necklace Grant got me!)
- Electronics as applied to cross stitching & jewelry making (think LEDs, EL wire, etc.) and the intersection of all three of these art forms
- Freelance online writing course through Stanford (thank you to everyone who has encouraged me after reading along with the blog!)
This is also a perfect time for me to prioritize health & wellness. These are the activities that are easiest for me to participate in with the language barrier. It’s easy to follow along physical instructions in a class and model after the teacher.
- Biking, spin class, and weight lifting
- Dance of all kinds (pole dance, modern dance. etc.)
- Exploring nutrition mobile apps from a ux perspective (this is an area both Grant and I are passionate about)
That is how we’ve been spending our free lives lately…