I had dreamt of change for such a long time. 2017 was the catalyst that kick started my new chapter…
Greetings from Koh Phangan, Thailand!At the time of writing this, I am 9 months into my new life and I wanted to share why I decided quit my job, sell my house, belongings, car and jet off to practice yoga, meditation & reiki around the world. Hopefully landing a job teaching English/Science along the way…
– Aimee’s Journey –
I’m originally from Middlesbrough, a small town south of Newcastle in the North East of England. My degree is in Applied Chemistry and I have a PGCE in teaching science and chemistry up to college level.
I have travelled quite a bit backpacking round New Zealand, Vietnam and Thailand, spent a year teaching in Bangkok and visited various places in Europe as well as venturing to India to practice yoga a few times.
An unhappy 2017
I was living a typical kind of life for 3 years before the dreaded year of 2017 happened. During this time, I worked shifts as an analytical chemist and I was plodding along and doing ‘ok’ in life.
Yoga had become a regular part of my life and it really helped me through a bad break up and get my anxiety in check. I kept going to practice and had a amazing experiences in Goa and Thailand practising yoga. This kind of kick started my dream of going back abroad and studying yoga.
In this time, I bought my mum and dads old house and a new car. My job paid really well and although I was content, I was never fully happy and fulfilled. I always dreamt of a life abroad, something was missing and I could never put my finger on it.
There were some big changes at work; they shut down the plant I worked on and reduced the number of staff in the laboratory. They needed someone to move to a different site, so I volunteered. Although this initially seemed like a good move, it turned out to be hell on earth for me.
Not to delve into too much detail, but
it was an extremely toxic workplace, which made me very unwell.
Consequently, I realised quite quickly I couldn’t return to that workplace. Working in that particular lab was literally one of the worst experiences of my life.
I then realised that without this well paying job, I couldn’t afford my house, my car, my bills. I had to make some major decisions in my life.
Back home, I have lovely friends and family, but everyone had their own lives. I was so lonely, I spent most evenings in the gym (alone) or at home (alone). I was so internally unhappy and spent most evenings having an early night crying myself to sleep.
It really was one of the most challenging times of my life.
‘Document the moments you feel most in love with yourself – what you’re wearing, who you’re around, what you’re doing. Recreate and repeat.’ – Warsan Shire
After a lot of soul searching, talking to close friends and family, crying, crying, and more crying, I decided that I 100% wanted to:
- Go back and teach abroad
- Practice as much yoga as I can handle whilst on the road
I always missed travelling and Thailand greatly.
I was always planning my next big yoga adventure and I had dreamt of doing this with life for years. So I decided to go for it. Travelling then eventually getting back into teaching English or Science abroad…
My Steps Towards Happiness
I started selling everything I owned and the things I couldn’t sell, I gave away or donated to charity. My house went on the market and sold within a few months.
I just did not want to own anything! I wanted to get rid of absolutely everything apart from my suitcase, my little backpack and a few sentimental things. The sentimental things are stored in my parent’s loft. It took a few months of hard work to decide what was sentimental, but I managed to achieve it.
I quit my job on December 22nd 2017 and booked my flights to Goa. I then left the UK on 5th January 2018. After a teary goodbye to my Mum & Dad, who I love so dearly, I went through departures at Newcastle Airport and started my new chapter in life.
It has been one of the best things I have done and I have no regrets. I’ve been home to visit family in this time and jetted off again. I will go back at Christmas, so I feel happy that I can still pop home every 6 months or so to see family.
I have had a whole range of opinions on my decision: most closest to me realising it was the best thing I could do for myself. Others stated how stupid I was to walk away from a well paid job and selling my house, etc.
What’s a nice house and well paid job if you’re utterly miserable in life & made to feel really uncomfortable at work?
Money and material things do not make you happy, living your truth does.
I’ve had so many amazing experiences in the time I’ve left the UK. I’ve met some amazing people, many who have done similar to what I have done. I never had any regrets and still have none.
So, how is this achievable?
Here are some tips to start you on the journey to achieving your dreams.
Define what it is you want out of life and research how others have made it:
- Happen; and
Dependent on what your goal is, you’ll need a plan to save, get training, or work.
If it’s to travel, can you look into teaching online? Digital nomadding? Is it setting up your own business? What qualifications do you need? How much money needs to be saved? Can you move back in with parents or a friend whilst you save?
If it is a new job, what qualifications do you need? Would you be willing to move?
These are just a few questions that you need to ask yourself, research is key.
Have a goal and work towards it, daily…
Is it to save enough to get you kick started? Do you need some specific qualifications to start you off? Should you declutter? What little things can you do to help you to turn these things into big things?
Meditate on it, you will be amazed at how many answers come to you and the clarity you can achieve by creating space and calming the monkey mind.
Having a plan and focusing on it daily will really help you achieve your goals.
3. Quench Negativity
Do not listen to negativity from family and friends….
Grandma will have her opinion. So will Mum, co-workers, friends, other family members and even the cat down the road! The best thing to do is block this out and spend as much time talking to those who have made similar choices and are supportive of your eagerness to change your life for the better.
4. Like Mindedness
Spend time with like-minded people & people who support you…
Spending time with people who support your aims, goals and people who ‘get you’ will be crucial for your mental well-being whilst you follow your dreams.
Remember; you’re not alone
There is a world full of folk who are doing what you dream of doing.
Look for inspiration; who or what has inspired you to want to change? Remember this daily. Keep it in your mind. Inspiration is a great tool to keep you moving forward…
6. Use Fear as Fuel
It’s ok to be scared, use this fear as fuel. Don’t be afraid to fall off the horse, you can always get back on.
If it doesn’t scare you, then maybe you’re doing something wrong.
Big changes should be scary. You’re pushing out your comfort zone and it is an uncomfortable thing to do, but keep going. If things go wrong, its ok. This is life and nothing is a smooth line. It’s a roller coaster of bumps, but you can always climb back on and set off again. Do not give up!
7. Be an Opportunist
Keep your eyes open for things that can help you along your path; keep eyes open for opportunities…
Be open minded on your journey, the more open minded and positive you are, the more you’ll attract opportunities into your life, such as people, opportunities and places.
Can you volunteer for a while? Is there any way to gain experiences? Can you talk to people who have taken this path before?
8. Have Faith
Have faith in yourself! It is down to you and you alone…
Listen to your heart and your soul; it knows best. Only you and you alone knows what you want from life, so it is up to you to chase it. No one else can do it for you, nor should you expect them to.
Let go of all the things holding you back and follow your dreams…
‘No heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams’
Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist
Are you planning any drastic life changes? Have you done anything similar?
I’d love to hear from you!