As I read people’s yearender posts on how amazing 2015 is, I look back to how I lived mine and reflect on the things that I’ve learned best.
I was unemployed from January to April then went back to corporate work on May 2nd only to travel to Europe from mid-October to mid-December. The carefree and easygoing wanderlust bug has gotten into me since my “residency” in the UK from 2012 to 2014. Or maybe even after that. But for today, I will talk not about the places I’ve scratched on my map but about the things that hit me the most.
1. People are generally kind.
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Believe on the kindness of people whom you will meet. I’ve talked about kindness of humanity on a separate post but I didn’t detail on how a stranger bought and gave us foods on the way to Copenhagen, another paid our entrance tickets and treat us to dinner in Milan, someone bought me coffee in Switzerland, a young couple gave me chocolates in Granada, a new friend invited me to visit her in Prague, a guy carried my bag in Madrid, and so on. It’s amazing how you can connect to people and they can just be the sweetest. Trust on their goodness but also, don’t forget to pay it forward.
2. You represent your country.
You are an ambassador of your own country. People will always create perceptions and stereotypes. So, try to talk about yours with good impressions. You’ll meet people from all over the world and they’ll be interested to know where you come from, as you are as interested to know about theirs. Be Ms. Philippines.
3. It’s okay not to have plans.
Christmas market in Plaza Mayor de Madrid
Sometimes, the best experiences come from unplanned adventures. Just wander around and immersed yourself with the unexplored. Try things, eat local foods, talk to people and know their stories. It’s an opportunity to learn and appreciate unexpected things that come from new beginnings or end as unforgettable moments.
4. Celebrate life.
Naples bay, Italy
Appreciate what life can offer. Stroll along the bay while the sunset looms over your shadow. Hike trails to discover what lies ahead. Get lost on unfamiliar lanes. Dip your hands on the coolness of a lake. Take a seat on a wilderness. These are free and we’re fortunate we get to enjoy them.
5. Love Yourself.
Most of the time, we take our happiness for granted. We don’t do the things that we want. Remember to enjoy the fruits of your hard work. Throw yourself out there and no matter what happens, tell yourself you are awesome.
6. Write a journal.
Pour your thoughts on a journal. It doesn’t matter if it’s just few sentences on a daily basis or even weekly. It will give you the time to reflect about your experiences and the things you learn from it. Your journal will immortalize your moments and someday as you go through it, you’d be amazed on the awesomeness of your adventures or the silliness of your thoughts. Still, it will thug your heart and brings back memories.
Now as I bid goodbye to 2015 and welcome 2016, I hope for greater things to come and new experiences to cherish. May we all have an even better year than the previous!