Taking it slow.

It’s pretty hard to find balance in life. You’re always either working too much or playing too hard. Either one is a bad thing for you in the long term.

Over the last 3 or so years I turned into a really serious person. I’d constantly be thinking about what there was to do, or what I had to do next(study especially). Because of this I didn’t get around to actually having fun much. It’s kind of weird because in the last couple of weeks I’ve finally had a chance to just sit back and let the universe run its course. And because of this I feel like I’m slowly turning back into the person that I used to be 3 years ago.

3 years ago I had a lot of friends. I was a fun person to be around. I never really thought very seriously about money, skills, what I owed to people(emotionally not financially) – I didn’t think much about the future at all. To put things more simply, I lived in the moment. And I have not doubt that 3 years ago I was a happier person in general because of that.

I turn 23 this year. I’m an adult now. I suppose society would dictate that I do think more seriously about my future, and welfare in general. But I think I’ve grown tired of a lifestyle that isn’t fun. Maybe this 3 year period was necessary, I can do a lot more than I could 3 years ago – and if I hadn’t changed at all there’s no way I’d be in Japan now or be able to speak any Japanese.  So I guess in the end what’s most important is balance. When I had this conversation with someone that I admire a lot this is what they said to me:

“You’re better off being a negative person, and actually working towards something than being positive and just constantly telling yourself ‘things are going to work out’ without taking any action – but then again I don’t see why you can’t be positive and believe that things will work out while you work towards something”

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5 thoughts on “Taking it slow.

  1. You are right about balance. If you simply “go with the flow” you’ll wake up at 30 or later, and find you have gotten nowhere, have nowhere to go, and are not so very young any more! You shouldn’t be a total drudge either.

    • So I was right in my estimation! Sorry to be that frank but you’re not an adult now!!!! Well you will be an adult when YOU will want to be one… I just turned 33 so 23 sounds like you’re a “baby”! You are just on the verge to start the best part of your life! You’ve finished your studies and are too young to think of a family so just do what you want!

      I mentioned before that I have an equivalent of a master in business… People and society were expecting me to follow the flow find a good job, stay with my ex, start to have children etc, etc… Well I did not… I am a very serious person, I like having fun but I don’t like going out. I prefer having my very few friends at home (even though this is impossible as my best ones now live on different continents…) and whenever they feel like seeing me, which could be once every 3/4 months for the one who lives 2 roads away from me…
      Surprisingly enough I called her not to have news but to know if she could come to see me as I needed to talk.. I had been for once on Facebook to ask for an email address and then THE question hit me! Have I done the wrong choices? Did I miss the best part of my life? Well the answer is NO obviously but being different is not always easy as everyone tends to compare one’s life with the one of the others…

      I realised at your age that I will never be able to work in a normal job in a normal company without being hurt.. I am very passionate and when I work I think about the interest of the company first… well in Europe, most of the people think about themselves first, if it is not in the interest of the company well… never mind!
      Example : I used to work for Veolia Environment for an internship. I was at the world head office for the water treatment, in the public market marketing department. To make it short, the director of this department told me to give up because he did not want to argue with the director of another department who refused to do what was necessary for our department on the ground that she wanted to ask the industrial marketing department what they thought about it! The project I was on had an impact on every business unit of the group dealing in water treatment (around 200 around the planet).. I was so furious and frustrated… My mentor who is one I admire a lot and who taught me a lot, explained me that sadly this is often the case and that I will be confronted to the fact that a lot of managers are actually the less capable of a section as you cannot promote the one that gets the jobs done, this person being absolutely necessary.. This becomes false when the manager is not being recruited from the team obviously.. but this not so often the case, or least did not used to be…
      So I decided that the only solution was to open my own company.. By the time I had finish my project it was 2008 and finding investors during a worldwide financial crisis who are willing to bet on a freshly out of school 26 years old girl .. well was nearly impossible.. and actually I was just a few months to late.. I found someone… but this person had just invested the money he had in a business in Ivory Coast… So if only I could wait a few months or a year, the time he got his investment back… He is still waiting to be repaid as thanks to France and those idiots who did not appreciate the end of colonialism and did not understand that the resources of one country belong to it… Ivory Coast has been declared a war zone (that means that no banks are doing any business in the country..)… In the mean time I studied on my own to get a degree as a beautician which would have helped me being me credible towards other potential investors and had a lot of different jobs to make ends meet.
      That destroyed my CV.. I am now considered as being someone versatile and unable to commit… and this is all the contrary.. I did not choose to change jobs, in France you get 1st a contract and then if the activity allows it then they offer you another one and then maybe a permanent position…anyway… I don’t blame everything on the others as when what happens to me seems to have a pattern, there must be something in me (personality or behaviour) that makes the other behaving like this (I have been morally harassed by one of my manager in one job, and told off by my n+6! (how the hell did he know I existed!!!!!) in another one..). My friends and loved ones tell me that there is nothing wrong with me, I doubt it but it makes me realise that “Yes I am different”..
      I have not completely given up the idea of my project, I just continue my life.. My ex left on my sister’s wedding day (when I was harassed at work), not that I was a very good girlfriend and that it was probably better for me not to like going out! I do what I want and I don’t care about what the others can think, and because I am serious (I think about consequences quite quickly) I don’t regret anything I do as I take full responsibilities of my actions.. If you leave me because I cheated on you well, you’re not the one!!!
      Anyway I was in a mess, moved in Northern Ireland (bad, really bad time, but good experience in the end…) I came back to France depressed and thanks to that I met the man I am with! I went to a friend’s birthday party, which I thought was something “normal” (I said I am serious, I drink sometimes, got pissed 2/3 times badly so I thought never again, I drink now moderately and I never did drugs, went clubbing only once, as I said I don’t like going out). I was in for a surprise! She had kept the location secret…. I discovered too late that it was in a squat! Anyway as I am a good friend, I went on…. at the end I had decided I was going to have fun.. She asked to help her cooking (I said I am not a good girlfriend, I hate cooking!) pasta for Italians!!!!!!! We were with another couple of friends of hers (young, sorry they were your age! I was 27) idiots!! anyway I was really pissed off and apparently they all saw it… I ended up spending the rest of the week end with one of the DJ of the sound system that was doing the music, (one of the most famous on the London underground techno music scene, apparently). He is the reason why I moved to London and he is now the father of my 2 young children and some of the squatters are really good friends of ours… and they still remember those pasta with a polish sauce!

      Imagine all what can or cannot happen to you from now!!! One of my sister (she is 35) complied with society’s expectations, did good studies, went on working for years as a buyer.. now she’s studying to become an art therapist.. You cannot escape who you are! and you have to follow your heart!

      You said you were turning back into who you were 3 years ago.. This is impossible, you always were yourself but somewhere you new you had to something for your life and so another part of your personality took over , the serious one.. Now that what was to be done is done, your other you can come back, but you will not be as carefree as you were… You will be able to enjoy more fully your fun because you lacked it for 3 years!
      I had quite a lot of experiences that some would describe as shitty, and a lot of people wonder how I can be happy… I AM VERY HAPPY because I do what I believe in and what I want without considering the rest of the world.. and I never give up.. If something is not working I don’t blame it on the others but on me, so I make the changes I need and that puts me in charge of my life…
      So to conclude what became again a very very long comment (please tell me if I am boring/bothering you), I did not do the wrong choices, and as my friend told me, I always did what I wanted, so if I had gone out more, it would not have changed who I am, I would have ended up cheating more on my ex and really thinking going home, damn! I hate going out!

      So there are periods we need and want to be serious and others we want/ need to have fun, balance is a necessity and I completely agree with what you were told.
      Nothing is impossible, there are only few things on which we cannot have an impact. And this is life. Do all what you can to achieve what you want, listen to your heart and you will never be unhappy in the end! Nothing ever goes according to plan!


  2. Balance is something people actively work to achieve, and it is constantly maintained throughout life if attained. University is definitely an environment without balance. It is a crucible! Now that you’re free from that environment, you realize something is missing, which is true.

    i think the key to life is to live without regrets. It’s like that phrase we hear at weddings: “…object now or forever hold your peace…”. That phrase could mean to say whatever is on your mind now in order to suffer less mental anguish in the future. What i mean is that to do what you want to do, but always in moderation. Don’t let it sit on the backburner and let it slide by. I think that you went to japan in the first place is a big step towards finding who you are, and thus finding the balance you are looking for. And yes, it is a working man’s HOLIDAY, so take some time and treat it as such!

    (I hope you don’t mind the ramble…or if i went off-topic!)

  3. Hi!!!

    I hope your silence is the sign of a newly found balance or that the changes you’ve made were the right ones and that you’re fully enjoying yourself!!!!

    Take care!!

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