I remember all those years ago, facing the end of my school days and about to leave high school. I was on the brink of a whole new life, and a future that was filled with promise. When looking back, it is really only very recently that I found my place in the world. My story is different from so many. I never wanted to live within the general norms of society, and when I was given an ultimatum by my father, instead of moving into higher education, I went to work.
It was only until very recently, that I understood my two higher and most deep-seated values. I have a list of values that I live by, but my two highest are Adventure and Freedom. When I think about my story and these two values and how they have shaped my history, it is no wonder that I have made the decisions that I have made.
The fact that I went to work directly after school, I always thought was a massive failure for me. I didn’t know any different then, and my father who I have realized saw very little value in what my life was, so going off to work was at the time, a means to an end. When I think back though, starting work I built fierce independence, a strong work ethic and a sense of freedom in having my own money to do what I wanted.
I spent a lot of time with my parents and had the privilege of having holidays with them. It was wonderful that since I was earning a salary that I wasn’t reliant on them for the way I spent my money, albeit while we were on holiday together. I was only into my late teens when I had my own earning power and realized the incredible opportunity that this presented.
While on holiday at the coast, we stopped into a scuba shop where I bought my own wetsuit, mask, and snorkel and a pair of fins. It started off my first real adventure into Freedom, which brought me such a sense of joy. It was also a wonderful opportunity to nurture friendships and create bonds with both my sister and my brother who also joined in on the fun! My scuba days turned into wonderful family time too, and both my mom and dad thoroughly enjoyed the weekends out at a local diving hole.
While I was happy in my weekend pursuits, I always felt as though my career was lacking something. I never thought that what I was doing for money added any personal value. While I generally did very well, a good work ethic always takes care of that, I was always looking for the next best thing. The result was that I moved from job to job, and started to believe that this was it for me.
It all changed for me when I was sitting reading a magazine having a pedicure. A woman had just walked the Camino de Santiago and she described this as “life-changing” A long story short – I went, I failed, I went back and I walked and I did indeed experience a massive shift in my focus for my future, and it did literally change my life.
The crux of the matter is that how we start out is not necessarily how we finish off. There are incredible opportunities for change, and it just takes a little shift in your personal beliefs to move from your path and onto another that actually feeds your higher values. A path that first of all, adds personal value, but can also add value to your loved-ones lives.
It is my personal belief, that I can only present myself to the world, and to those people who love me if I myself am resonating at the highest level and living my most authentic life. I can only do this, if I am living in alignment with my values.
My personal values are Freedom and Adventure. What are yours?