I found myself triggered by the words as my friend walked out the door. Vacation! Does everyone think I just go on vacation all the time? Don’t they know how much I’m working to build a new practice and write a book?
Strong emotional reactions, sometimes called triggers, to anything in the outside world is often a reflection to the crap we are sensitive to because of our own subconscious beliefs or values. They can be a great (and sometimes painful) pointer to the unhealed parts of us.
I reacted because somewhere my ego wanted me to remember or feel I’m not working hard enough, I’m not successful enough, and I’m not doing enough. I “should” do more. It also has to do with my perception of how people interpret my lifestyle.
Being a Digital Nomad vs. Taking a Vacation
The innocuous ‘vacation’ statement and genuine expression of love and caring would not have been emotionally reactive for me had I healed some past judgments. When I tell people I’m a part-time digital nomad, they react differently than when I say I’m working from my truck and campgrounds across the US.
Some people react as if I must be destitute to be living out of my old truck and boondocking. Others think it’s the coolest thing ever. I’m doing the same thing- it’s THEIR perception of my experience. Although I do want to maintain a certain professional image, I also have to remember that they are viewing my life through their own filters, and if I’m upset by the way they view me— that’s the issue I need to address within myself.
Healing My Own Baggage
I did some Emotional Freedom Techniques tapping and healing work around my own patterns and beliefs around how hard I have to work and what it had to look like. Then came a powerful moment of clarity.
Every Day Can Be Like Vacation | Do What You Love and Don’t Work a Day…
I CAN treat every day like it was vacation. Not in a way that I ignore work or lay on the beach with margaritas or turn off my phone (even when I want to). I can choose to face every day with excitement and dedication to live and do the things I want to do. To be curious about how to make it more powerful for myself. Not that I ignore or avoid the challenges, but that I meet them also with openness, patience, and curiosity.
Take a Break!
It’s healthy to use more time practicing yoga and walking on a trail. When I’m traveling I sometimes work on my computer all day from the seat of my truck and watch the sun move from one side of the sky to another; finishing just in time to realize that my dreams of hiking for the day are gone with the light. It’s too dark to wander into the unknown wilderness
Live Every Day as If It’s Your Last
What if we all enjoyed daily life? You hear tropes like ‘live every day like it’s your last,’ ‘take time to breathe,’ and ‘do what you love,’ but do we do that? Do you unhook the emotional reactions and belief systems to freely, confidently, and without guilt choose that kind of life? I slowed down when I was in Europe. The American lifestyle has shifted me into a hectic pace.
Make The Choice
My choice is made. I choose to continue working hard, to doing what I love, to writing my books. But I also choose to come at it with an attitude as if I’m on vacation and enjoying every moment of it. After all, it’s not about what you do, it’s about how you perceive it.
Need Help Slowing Down?
EFT Tapping is great for all the emotional reactions that arise when you even consider changing your lifestyle. Contact me if you would like some support!
Hello everyone! My last few blogs and newsletters have been way too serious or philosophical, so I thought I would lighten it up and share some things that I am finding interesting and/or amusing.
(I apologize in advance for the picture formatting/sizing and placement. WordPress changed how I can work with pictures. They publish different than the back end shows, so I currently cannot get the pictures to do what they are supposed to. It looks great on this end!! I swear!!!)
1. Toilets. I know…who starts a business newsletter with toilets? I am having a strange fascination with the structure of toilets and flushing buttons, and finally used my first in-floor toilet in Italy. (Is that TMI??)
2. Spelling. Before I flew to the United Kingdom, I was considered great at spelling. But words are very different there than in the US, and I was reminded of that often. Even my computer picked up that I was in the UK and told me I was was misspelling words such as: theater (theatre), color (colour), neighbor (neighbour), license (licence) and so on. They actually use the word “whilst,” yet Americans avoid the word as much as we can. (Like swum… we much prefer to say “went swimming.”)
3. Enunciation. Training one’s ears to a different language can be challenging. My friend Martina, who is Italian, and I were taking turns reading to each other and I read the word “quarrel.” She suddenly stopped me and exclaimed “squirrel?!” while proceeding to take a squirrel pose and make squirrel-like noises. (It still makes us giggle!) We also had a great miscommunication about “leak” versus “lick,” which sound very similar to non-English speaking ears, as well as “hate” and “ate.” In Sweden, I am often corrected when I think I am pronouncing something PERFECTLY and my friends tell me it is completely wrong. I cannot hear the nuances of some words…yet!
4. Knives. Did you know it is illegal to carry around a knife that has a locking blade (think multitool, camping knives, etc) at all in England unless you are going camping? I didn’t. My friend’s 11-year old told me when he saw it lying on my bed. In Sweden, I also found out it is illegal to bring knives out of the house, so one cannot just grab the kitchen knife and go get it sharpened at the local grocery store. It is a good thing I know how to sharpen my knives myself! It does explain all of the extremely dull knives I have dealt with at hostels though.
5a. Bonfire night/ Guy Fawkes night. This holiday in the United Kingdom commemorates a failed plot to assassinate King James I of England back in 1605 (Catholic vs. Protestant.) There are large bonfires (often with an effigy of Guy Fawkes in it), fireworks, and toffee apples. It is cerebrated November 5th, and overshadows Halloween (which is barely celebrated here.) I found it delightful and community-oriented, and I managed to eat just as much junk food as usual.
5b. Armistice (Remembrance) Day. November 11th is Remembrance Day, and, unlike the US, it is taken very seriously over here. Many people start wearing their poppies a month in advance. One town I was in had structures all over town decorated with poppies, some of them handmade by the local artisans.
5c. Sant Lucia. This Italian Saint is also celebrated in Sweden on December 13th, although they have different traditions. In Italy, the kids bring letters to her, asking for what they want as a gift (like we do with Santa.) In Sweden, there are no gifts given, but often kids dress up and wake their parents with singing early in the morning dressed as Saint Lucy. There is a traditional saffron bread made as well. Here are the pictures from a concert and the homemade bread (I helped!!)
6. Strange Things in the Streets. My friend, Trish, asked me to post pictures of odd things I find as I am traveling (travelling??) She showed me her favorite butcher shop, who, for Christmas market, hangs pheasants, ducks, and other animals you can purchase outside. This shop also sells squirrel, which I have never eaten before. Maybe next time!
These water bottles strapped to a post are supposed to prevent dogs and cats from peeing there. I saw many framing doorways as well.
7. Navigating Trails. I am pretty good at navigating, but I find that not all public trails are marked thoroughly. For example, while I was in Italy, I decided to take the long version of this trail around a couple mountains. It is marked very well, just past the blue split to the north. Then, the trail splits about 4 times, none of which are marked. I thought I found the trail later, but it turned out it was someone’s property markings. After bushwhacking for about an hour straight up a beautiful mountain using a compass and Google Maps, I found my way back to the trail.
To be fair….perhaps sometimes I lose a trail because I get sidetracked or I think I’m smarter than Google (just because an unmarked-by-Google hiking trail crosses a road…. it doesn’t mean I can get on that road,) but I have seen a huge difference in the ways trails are marked in different countries and the resources available to find them. Hands-down Scotland had the best preparation information online, including length, bogginess, difficulty, pictures, descriptions, and a variety of ways to download the trail information. Sweden’s big trails are very well marked, but I have to buy a map/book/guide for each one.
8. Silly things that Make Life Easier.
I love these automatic light switches in pantries and closets that turn the light on and off when one opens and closes the door.
I also loved a garbage can, whose lid popped open when you opened the cupboard door under the sink. It’s truly the height of brilliance, as I am easily impressed.
This may not make life easier, but I loved the concept of a bunch of trees growing out of buildings. These buildings in Milano caught my attention, and I have been told I missed some that were better.
9. Seemingly Innocent Yet Dangerous Spots. The Strid, near Bolton Abbey in England, is a stream that goes from being about 6’ wide to about 1’ wide. The water rushing through it looks and seems fairly peaceful, but it is super dangerous, and has a 100% death rate for those who enter it. Cameras, cages, and anything else placed in the water here for research disappear. My friends jokingly call it “the babbling brook of death.”
10. Coming Home. I have two job interviews in Sweden in January. One on the West Coast in Gothenberg, the other on the East Coast in Stockholm. The outcome of those will determine when I will come home and for how long. I may be coming back in February or March for a few weeks when I accept a job. If I do not take one, I will not be home until June or July. Once I have my tickets and have confirmed with the spaces I rent, I will be booking people who are interested in massage and healing appointments. If you are interested, please let me know by replying to the newsletter, Facebook messaging me, or by texting me via my old Red Wing business line/mobile number.
11. New Certification! I am over halfway through my international certification process for Emotional Freedom Techniques a.k.a. tapping. It’s really amazing and I am seeing great results with my online clients. If you are interested in learning more, I am still offering it at a huge discount. **Note: Those who are seeing me for homeopathy and/or EFT also get first pick at massage appointments when I return.**
12.Other updates. if you missed my past blogs, you can find them HERE. One is a story of me thinking my tent was going to blow off a cliff with me in it. Quite exciting??!!
I miss you all and I miss Minnesota, but I am learning valuable and interesting things over here! I look forward to hearing from all of you. (BTW, if your plan is to come to Europe in the next 6 months or so, I might be able to meet you to say hello if you give me notice.)
Happy Labor Day. It has been a while since I have posted anything, because I accidentally deleted all my photos from my phone. I didn’t want google photos to keep backing up my photos because I have a backup elsewhere. I told it to stop syncing, then deleted all my pics from the cloud in google. And…off my phone they went. Technology does not love me sometimes. But I didn’t want to post anything picture-less, and my photo storage wouldn’t give me the option to re-download to my phone. **Insert long dramatic yet slightly frustrated sigh here.** I now have my laptop back, so here we go!
I am on the bus, heading back to one of the most beautiful places I have encountered in Scotland so far….the Isle of Skye. I was lucky enough to have one of my co-volunteers in the hostel I was at in Fort William allow me to ride with her on her trip there. It rained almost the whole time, but I got these pictures.
Fairie Glen, Isle of Skye
Quiraing, Isle of Skye
I want to hike this island in a way that I cannot describe. There is so much subtle and untouched beauty here (as well as a lot of fully destroyed things by tourists. Rant ahead: Toilet paper DOES NOT DISSOLVE when you throw it on the ground.Think about how long it sits in a toilet without dissolving! Either cart it out like you would any other garbage or burn it in your campfire. My friend has photos of a beautiful area; behind every tree and bush you can see TP in the bushes. Gross. It is my new pet peeve and the strongest source of irritation for me on this trip when I camp or hike and there is TP stuck into the landscape.)
Phew.I feel better now. 🙂 After my 3+ hour bus-ride home, I hopped onto the volunteer exchange website and looked for positions available.I am lucky to be volunteering in Skye Backpackers Hostel in Kyleakin from today until September 17th! 5 hours a day, 5 days a week gives me 7 days of lodging and the opportunity to do hiking and sit in the beauty (and take more photos!) Tasks include cleaning the hostel, doing reception, doing laundry, and whatever else is required of me.
View out the hostel window my first day here
In 1882 the first Labor Day Holiday was celebrated in New York City. It was meant to honor the “working man” and to honor the “social and economic achievements of American workers…(a) tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” Source:The U.S. Department of Labor.
I am still learning a lot about the work ethic of different cultures, (see my newsletter Cultural Similarities & Differences) and just met a woman who lives in Israel. She talked about doctors she nannied for who worked 12-hour days, 7 days a week because of the shortage of doctors, then talked about how hard she personally was expected to work in all of her jobs. The value of her area was to work hard, sleep, then work again. No real time to play or enjoy life.
When I visited San Francisco, they were having a problem because housing was so expensive, minimum wage workers could not afford to live, thus there is a huge shortage of service staff in the area. I also know farmers in Minnesota whose workers are trying to get citizenship and/or appropriate visas, but they keep getting deported, thus leaving the farm struggling to survive.NO answer for any of this is easy, but it makes me think a lot about my own values of how I work and how I want to show up in the world…for my clients and for myself.
I had a multi-hour conversation with a social worker from Michigan the other day, and he discussed how most people who are “on the system” want to get off of it and be independent, and how strongly they want to contribute to society. I feel grateful to be contributing in any way I can while I am here, while also taking care of myself. People as I travel also want to help. They want to make sure I have places to stay, see the best sites in the area, experience local culture, get opportunities for photos, and will often go out of their way to do so!
Managers and volunteers at the Chase the Wild Goose Hostel, Fort William
To summarize this random thought process- often working helps people place a value on their worth in society.They get to decide how they experience that, but I want to say Thank You to everyone for doing what they can, how they can.We all have a role to play, no matter how insignificant it can seem.I hope you can find some kind of fulfillment in your work-whether it is for pay, for play, volunteering, or tucked in the past. Enjoy your Labor Day.
I’ve been doing a lot of research about my upcoming year to Sweden. There is so much to research, including licensing, visas, and travel restrictions. There are many options-do I get a job, work for room & board and explore, or go to school? How can I learn what it is I want to learn in life, have fun and explore, stay within my budget, and still support myself all at the same time?
Some days Sweden + travel seems exciting and new and full of potential. Other days it feels scary, impossible, and as if I should just forget about it and stay here in the United States, where I can still travel and learn, although with a culture I am mostly familiar with. Yet I’ve realized that the feelings that I’m feeling are not exclusive to my travel plans. We all have moments of questioning our lives. Are we on the right track? Have we done what we want in life, or are we regretting choices? What would have happened if….? Sometimes we feel stuck, hopeless, frustrated, angry, and a myriad of other things often all at the same time.
I’m a bit adverse to blogging, but it feels like this is something that’s going to be important to not only keep track of my own experience of life for my own learning process, but to share with others and to remind people that it is possible to heal. I feel like it will be a great platform to share how other cultures interact with each other through touch, emotion, and healing. I also hope everyone that reads these will either gain insight on themselves, learn something fun to try, or explore a concept from another area of the world. So here we go. I have given my notice for my apartment, I have given a minor notice to both my Workspaces, and most of my clients know I will be leaving town for a year. I only hope my experiences encourage others to be present with themselves and to grow in their own way as well.