More than 4 years I’ve been living in Sweden, and after 4 year’s of keeping up with life’s ‘new’ pace, I have finally started to slow down. It is now January 2017, and two years after my father’s passing I have started to experience what inner peace feels like.
From the first month, september 2012, when I was studying in Lund everything started to enter in a rapid pace with graduation, travels, moving to Stockholm, getting a topnotch job, yadayadayada. It at times felt more like a waterfall crashing over me. ‘Career! Travel! Meetings! Dinner! Expat life! Apartment hunting! Dinners!’
Last year’s goal – which certainly happened (check!) – was to live in one place more than a year. To live and ‘nest’ in this apartment of mine for more than 12 whole months. After a tough reflection in February 2016, I counted back and realised I had moved every year – or shorter than that – for the past 6+ years. I have been frequently moving boxes I hadn’t even unpacked yet.
Now, at the age of 27 I finally pulled the breaks. I am cleaning out my life from appointments and my place from useless stuff I don’t need. I do still at times live out of my suitcase. In 2016 I was looking down the barrel of 46 flights totalled, however…. this is a big improvement from the previous years, where every 3 days I was on an airport.
A lot of the travel I do, is due to work. Off-sites in Madrid, Copenhagen, Helsinki, London, the Portuguese coast, Dublin. Conferences in the States, you name it. On top of private trips to Bali, Argentina, Australia, Norway, Italy, Paris etc. while at the same time visiting family in the Netherlands every 2 to 3 months. I have become a master at quickest routes through airports and I still hail myself whenever I make it airplane-to-train-in-9-minutes at Amsterdam Schiphol. #truestory – you gotta have some fun trying to beat yourself as a traveller.
At one point I was travelling so much it felt much more of a burden than fun. Never at one place, never focussed on the here and now. Especially after my dad’s passing I kept myself busy. If I was on the move, I didn’t have to think about any of it. Buying an appartement, renovating and selling it again within a year. Loading up moving trucks, networking with all the ‘important’ people within Tech, maximizing my public transportation card, rolling across airports with merely 5kg of handluggage to last for the next 3 days. I felt like a though ass babe taking over the world, seeing places, meeting people: doing what life is ‘supposed’ to be like. Right?
But now…. Now I take weekends ‘off’ and just spend them entirely in bed – I perhaps might go out for brunch or groceries. But other than that, I take a walk to the local coffeebrewer, paint my nails, watch Gilmore Girls and be completely ok with it. I’m certainly not ashamed of it. I’ve come to the realisation what an incredible luxury it is to spend time in front of the TV or behind a book. No children, no work, no hospitals, no social media. Just being lazy and enjoying it to the max. The Zen-monday mornings are a thing I’ve never experienced until now. I don’t really care whether I have my hair on-point or miss a gym session and make-up has even more become a thing I need to pull out the cavalry for, so I leave it be. And it is OK.
It’s ok not to keep up with Instagram, and blogs, and even more so: the countless of vlogs popping up everywhere. Sometimes I just go in hibernation. Leave work at 4PM. For the first time there is no rush, no hasty meetings or lunches. No ‘need to do this, write that, contact her, visit exhibition’, only: what do I feel like?
So therefore also my post: just writing what I like, whenever I feel like it. If that’s on a 6 month interval or within 6 minutes. So I guess my 2016 resolution of slowing down has started to take shape. 2017 will aim on stillness, and to try and find the patience and focus to actually read through a book.
Hope life is well on your side of the screen as well!