Last year, I thought I found myself going on the right track. I chased after the dream of being able to live and work in a country entirely different from mine, and I turned that dream into reality. I was living in Europe, a continent I have always adored, and worked for a company in which my role was what I’ve always wanted to do. I was independent and enjoyed the lifestyle I had back then.
Fast forward to half of 2015, that reality struck me really hard. Work got the best of me and I was on call 24/7. I could barely eat nor sleep because of stress. I lost five kilos and always had to consult a doctor because of my daily migraine. I went to work feeling miserable first thing in the morning and broke down in front of my colleague, and went home feeling even more miserable as I lived alone and had no one to talk to. I thought I was capable of handling stress very well and continued to think that I could still conquer those very challenging times.
Next thing I know, I was shaking in a bus going to Luton Airport and when I arrived, I went straight to the comfort room and vomited all that negativity that was consuming me. That’s when it finally hit me: This is as far as I can go. This is my limit.
It took me three months to finally accept my own defeat. Three months to realize that there was no point anymore trying to impress others with my wellbeing at stake. Three months to tell myself that I’ve done the best that I could and that I have to accept my limitations. It’s time to let go and move on.
We often struggle to accept things we cannot change. We always cling to what has been lost, try to change things that have already happened and think that we are always in control of everything that transpires in our lives. In the end, we learn it the hard way that we have fought pointless battles, denied ourselves of insights that could have crossed our path and realize that we have lost our way.
But it is in learning that we find clarity in acceptance. It is in learning that we find the courage in ourselves to let go and release our attachments to people and situations. It is in experiencing struggles and downfalls that we develop our wisdom to know the difference between accepting what we cannot change and changing what we can positively influence.
And so I went back to my roots and fully reflected on my experience back in Hungary. I now trust that life unfolds itself without having to try and force things to happen, and at the same time, discerning what I can positively change in its course. I have come to realize that acceptance leads to peace with one’s self and that peace leads to one’s happiness. And more importantly, I am able to share that peace and happiness with others as I start it with me.