Imagine being blind-folded with your wrists tied behind your back. You try navigating your way around an unknown, new area. You start slow until you feel comfortable and in control and once you feel empowered your faced with a new barrier. You ask for help only to receive answers in a language you don’t understand.
I know I’ve hinted before about my frustrations from my past year and I don’t want make it sound like it was oh so horrible but it was an intense year.
Is it fair to say, maybe it’s just not for everyone? We met several people who love Korea, enjoy teaching there, and have been living there several years. And that’s fantastic!
I am almost starting to envy those who have settled. Those that have their favorite restaurant and is friends with the bartender. Those that run into familiar faces while walking down the street and know which market has the best products and where to find the newest movies playing in the theater with the best popcorn.
I know I want that one day but the time just hasn’t arrived yet.
Maybe this is a chapter of my story that needs to be finished but I feel like I’m just now coming off a crazy roller coaster and the dizziness has worn off and I’m finally finding my balance again. Although I was teaching both years, the last two years were extremely different.
The warm salty waves in Thailand bounced me around in the shallow water as I watched the sunset and listened to tropical beach tunes from the nearby restaurant. It hit me like a wrecking ball (guess that tune!) that after all the clenched fists, hefty sighs, tears of frustration, tears of being misunderstood, and late mornings just because I felt I had nothing to get up for … I finally reached the light at the end of the tunnel.
There are times in our lives when we want to give up. It can seem nearly impossible to see any way out of a particular situation. Your shoulders hang heavy, your stride may be slow, you try to smile for others but it’s basically written on your forehead that something is wrong.
These situations vary widely! It can be a relationship issue, financial troubles, countless work related problems, happiness, contentment, the list goes on and on and on.
You try to find joy in the little things, do activities you enjoy, spend time around people you love, yet this issue is still hanging above your head.
It’s easy to feel really alone during these difficult times and to feel like no one understands or can sympathize with how you are truly feeling.
Although there are rough patches in life there are things we can do to make the bumps a little more bearable.
I started the 30 challenges in 30 days to change my routine and gain some motivation in hope of getting a new perspective.
That’s what it really comes down to, perspective. In any situation, we react positively or negatively. How do you react when the waiter tells you it’s going to be another 10 minute wait, or when someone merges in front of you without a blinker? What about when you’re told you didn’t receive the position your were hoping to land? Or that it will take another year to receive that bonus you’ve been promised?
I truly believe everything happens for a reason, even the bad and the ugly. I didn’t have the time of my life in Korea but I know I was there for several reasons. I made some lifelong lasting friendships, I appreciate things in a completely different way and I’ve became obsessively excited to continue my teaching career in the United States.
Try reacting to the little things in a positive way. When someone ate that last piece of dessert you were saving, think: well, it’s healthier for me anyway. When you are stuck in traffic, sing along to your favorite song or listen to an audiobook/podcast you’ve been meaning to get to. Unfriendly server? Why don’t you be the friendly one and give them a big grin, they are probably having the worst day!
Or how about being on some amazingly beautiful islands in Thailand and accidentally dropping the camera causing the lens to break … This totally happened to us! Our positive outlook — we are enjoying the moment so much more and not getting distracted by taking the perfect photo. However, it will be fixed the second we get back to Bangkok.
Go throughout your day and see how you can react positively. If that issue is still bothering you, just breathe. There IS a light at the end of the tunnel, even if it’s dim.