When I was 12 years old, I made a plan that when I graduated university I would grab a one-way plane ticket somewhere across the world, move and start an entirely new life there.
Now, to most people this sounds crazy. How would I afford to move across the world and start anew? What about my family? My friends?
I’m not sure if little Sarah ever thought about these questions and you might assume that by now, at 21 years old that this little plan of mine would have been tossed in the trash. But actually, it hasn’t.
I’m not saying that I’m going to move across the world the second I graduate (which is next year – yikes!) however the idea of starting afresh looks better and better as I get older. As much as I love my family and friends, when you look at life objectively you come to realize that your life should be lived to the fullest in whatever way you think you can achieve that and you shouldn’t let things hold you back.
If tomorrow I decide to pack my things and move to Spain, if I have the means to do it, why shouldn’t I? It may be scary to move and think about living in another country where you may not know anyone or you may only speak bits and pieces of the language, but just like anything in life you learn to adjust. The first days, weeks, months of anything are hard. It’s how we adapt to our environments and situations that really matter.
It has taken a lot for me to realize that we are supposed to be living life for ourselves. Of course it’s great to support those around you, care for and love them, but if you’re not happy, odds are people around you won’t be as happy either.
I’ve learned pretty recently that I shouldn’t care as much about other people’s opinions as much as I do. I’ve always been someone who believed that everyone should live their lives and I will support them, as long as they aren’t harming anyone, why shouldn’t they do what they want to do if it makes them happy?
It’s also important to remember that everyone has different types of happiness. For some, happiness may be the company they keep, for others the job they perform, or the house they live in. Everything is subjective and it’s hard to look outside the bubble of your world and realize how unimportant material things are. I find living in Toronto/Ottawa the city mentality can enforce cultural norms of what people should wear and how they should look – but this isn’t the case everywhere in the world.
There’s nothing wrong with following social or cultural norms, but I think that when we look back at our lives we should be able to say that we are happy that we lived the lives that we wanted.