Homeward Bound: My personal journey through long-term travel

Some days it feels like we just left, other days it seems  like we have lived an entire life time here in Costa Rica.

Today is the day we land home in Victoria. My heart feels like it is going to burst just typing this. I have had so many moment lately where I’ve pictured the hugs I’ll be giving and it has brought a smile to my face and tears to my eyes.

Today is also a final day of reflection, 24 hours worth of travel time will do that to you. I find myself continuing to come back to a moment that occurred a few days before we left for Costa Rica. I was laying in bed, sick with worry. I turned over to Shaun and asked him what we would do if I couldn’t “handle it”, could we just come home?

I had never travelled for longer then three weeks, and I was so worried about the trip. What if I couldn’t handle being away from my friends and family. What if I couldn’t live a life so drastically different from the one I lead at home. What if I just couldn’t do it.

I was holding on to so much fear about our travels. I was holding on to so much fear about life.

This is how I was choosing to live my daily life. I lived from the foundation of fear, the foundation of the “what if?” The end result was that I wasn’t truly living.

Going into this trip, I knew that something needed to change. And as I reflect back on what I’ve learned, I find myself in awe of what occurred over the past 5 months.  I didn’t actively pursue change, change pursued me. As soon as I opened my heart to all the possibilities my journey of self-discovery unfolded before me in an almost magical way.

I’m not a different person, I’m not coming home completely changed.  I’m coming home with an understanding of who I am deep down, and what I want out of life.

I’m coming home and it’s time to Shine.

As for the blog…

Can you believe that I actually still have stories to tell? As of today, I will post on the blog twice a week to finish up the last few stories of our trip. After that, the blog will transform into something that excites me to no end.

But you’ll just have to wait to see that chapter unfold…

Until then my friends, Pura Vida

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Why Choose Fear?

For those of you are Rent fans, I hope you read the title with the necessary musical inflections in which I wrote it!

Today we are going to dive into a little Philosophy of Kate…Kateosophy? Hmmm, maybe not, sounds like an invasive medical treatment.

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My journey into the land of self-awareness continues. Our trip is winding down, and I’ve started to think about how I will adapt and integrate my new way of thinking into life back at home. As a result, I’ve started developing a few tricks to help avoid falling back into my same old patterns.

Today I figured I would share one with you!

One of my goals this trip has been to get a handle on negative emotions. I talked a little bit about it in this post back in December. If I am in a negative head space, I feel as if I can’t get out of it. I will actively choose to wallow in it rather then pulling myself out. I often rely on others to “pump my tires” to pull me out of my own negativity. This is  pattern that I’ve repeated over and over in my life (just ask my Mom!)

I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about why I do this. I realized that I often feel like my emotions are to complicated to attempt to figure out. When I am in a funk, I am not feeling just one single thing, I’m feeling tons! The thought of dissecting all my emotions and addressing them seems exhausting. So, I choose to stay in them and be negative instead.

Sounds like a bummer eh? Well I’m happy to say that this realization actually helped to create a serious “AhHa” moment for me. The result is the formation of a trick to help pull me out of my funks.

So here goes:

All emotions, every single one, fall into one of two categories: Love or Fear.

Positive emotions: Happiness, Joy, Empathy, Hope, Elation, Excitement, Gratitude, are all rooted in Love

Negative emotions: Anger, Frustration, Jealousy, Guilt, Doubt Sadness, Rage, these emotions, these are based in Fear.

This simple realization has helped ground my entire belief system. Instead of looking at my negativity as a complex mixture of emotions that I need to unpack and digest, I look at it as my Fear.

I then ask myself.

Why am I choosing Fear?

When I am choosing to wallow in my own negativity, I am making a concious choice to live a life based in Fear. It doesn’t feel good physically or mentally, but I’m making an active choice to stay in it. When I am whirling in my head, and feeling my negativity take over. I consciously ask myself “Why am I choosing Fear?

This one simple question has become my focal point for pulling myself out my funks, and switching gears. And I think it is its simplicity that makes it so effective. Negativity isn’t about the complexity of your emotions, it is about choosing Fear over Love.

So, this is my new state of being. I choose Love over Fear.

Life just isn’t as complicated as we make it out to be

If you are interested in any more of my learnings check out my My Philosophy page!

Pura Vida!

Kate

Twitter:@caketress

 

 

 

Today I Choose to be Thankful-An Exercise in Gratitude

If you’ve been following my posts, you may have read about my new focus.

Instead of looking outward towards all the things I want to do with my life, I’m starting by looking inward, and becoming who I want to be.

I’m starting the process by focusing on gratitude. I thought I would share a little bit about what I’ve learned so far, and some of the steps I’m taking to move forward. 

There will be no exciting Costa Rica adventures in this post, but I promise tomorrow we will be back to our regularly scheduled programs. So, if you are still game, lets dive in.

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Weird thought…but have you ever thought about what it would be like to have no hands?

Think about it, right now, you have no hands. Can you imagine what your life would be like?

Or what about feet? What would your life be like if you had no feet?

Hands, and feet. Things we take for granted every day, yet they make our lives so much easier.

Often life can seem overwhelming. Everything is so big. There are decisions to make and schedules to keep, and we lose sight of the little things.

Like the fact that we have hands, and feet.

This is where my journey begins, remembering to be thankful. Not just for the big things, but the little ones as well.

So, right at this very moment. Think to yourself, what are you grateful for? It can be big, or it can be small, but make it your very own.

Got it?

Now how does it make you feel?

Good right?

Now hold onto that feeling, and really let it wash over you. Hold onto that feeling for as long as possible. Feel good?

This is the exercise that I’ve been doing for the past week. Whenever I feel myself feeling unmotivated, negative, down, or just unfocused, I take a moment to think about what I’m thankful for in that very moment. Then I work on harnessing that energy and keeping it with me.

I share it with you because it is working wonders for me. The more I do this exercise, the easier it is, and the longer the feeling lasts.

So, in keeping with the exercise, at this very moment I am grateful for you. That’s right, you, right there, I know you are reading this!

Whether we’ve met in person, or simply through the blog, I am thankful for your presence. Being able to share my adventures, insights and learnings through this blog has been such an amazing part of my journey. The encouragement, light and love I’ve received from my readers is something that fills me with gratitude, and makes me smile.

So thank you all for being my current happy thought!

If you are interested in reading more about gratitude, check out Pathway to Happiness. This is the site I found the gratitude exercise on, as well as many other valuable teachings.

So now the big question…what are you grateful for?

Pura Vida

Kate

Follow me on Twitter:@caketress