Seizing Life.

      On a rare occasion, while stumbling blindly across the internet in search of time killing, we discover a random website or out of context quote posted by a friend of a friend on Facebook. This seemly random stumbling is, in my opinion, not random at all. Rather, it is a machination of life that was put into our view for a specific purpose. Likely that post, quote, picture, whatever, totally justifies an action or series of events that you've placed into motion and still have doubts about. I stumbled across one such thing that is worth sharing…which I do not do often. This is part of the Holstee Manifesto:

There it is. Simple, clean, and I'm sure there's a countless numbers of images that look exactly the same. But this precise arrangement of words tweaked something deep down in me. A lovely little thing called 'confirmation'.

     Some of you might know, some of you may be learning just now, but I have been offered a job in Dalian, China at the Dalian Medical University, one of China's best medical universities, to teach english to the students there. For the past month or so I have feverishly been applying to jobs in whatever country is giving them. A few responded, mostly agencies looking to snag another certified teacher for their ranks, but no real job offers for a month. Then I applied to Dalian. Within 4 days I was given an interview and a job offer. This is normally highly suspicious in my mind and throws up an enormous amount of red flags. But during the interview I noticed that they were actually looking at my resume…which is rare. How many job interviews have you had that actually read your history? They didn't even ask any interview questions…most are, after all, answered on my resume, a fact that I'm sure many of you share and the asking of any 'previous experience' in the field tends to denote that the interviewer isn't even looking at your background. This interviewer was so well prepared that he acknowledged my partial master's degree and numerous wilderness therapy positions as 'alternative education'. Very cool.

Any way, back to the my initial reason for sharing that picture up there. There's quite a few quotes I can snag but I'm going to take this one...

Some opportunities only come once, seize them.

I'm going to be honest, I'm really torn over this. I accepted, I do so knowing that it will be at least June 2015 till I'm back in America. I don't mind that. I miss friends, family, and my kitty but I know that I am loved, appreciated and those things will not leave me. I have an astounding support group of people all around me cheering on my adventures. But the thing I will miss? Well…a lot of things. Actually to many to mention, but as I'm writing this, I came across another bit of life throwing wonderful at me. Wonderful words by Marc Chernoff that also bear sharing:

  1. Breathe in the future, breathe out the past.  No matter where you are or what you’re going through, always believe that there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  Never expect, assume, or demand.  Just do your best, control the elements you can control, and then let it be.  Because once you have done what you can, if it is meant to be, it will happen, or it will show you the next step that needs to be taken.
  2. Life CAN be simple again.  Just choose to focus on one thing at a time.  You don’t have to do it all, and you don’t have to do it all right now.  Breathe, be present, and do your best with what’s in front of you.  What you put into life, life will eventually give you back many times over.
  3. Let others take you as you are, or not at all.  Speak your truth even if your voice shakes.  By being yourself, you put something beautiful intothe world that was not there before.  So walk your path confidently and don’t expect anyone else to understand your journey, especially if they have not been exactly where you are going.
  4. You are not who you used to be, and that’s OK.  You’ve been hurt; you’ve gone through numerous ups and downs that have made you who you are today.  Over the years, so many things have happened – things that have changed your perspective, taught you lessons, and forced your spirit to grow.  As time passes, nobody stays the same, but some people will still tell you that you have changed.  Respond to them by saying, “Of course I’ve changed.  That’s what life is all about.  But I’m still the same person, just a little stronger than I ever was before.”
  5. Everything that happens helps you grow, even if it’s hard to see right now.  Circumstances will direct you, correct you, and perfect you over time.  So whatever you do, hold on to hope.  The tiniest thread will twist into an unbreakable cord.  Let hope anchor you in the possibility that this is not the end of your story – that the change in the tides will eventually bring you to peaceful shores.
  6. Do not educate yourself to be rich, educate yourself to be happy.  That way when you get older you’ll know the value of things, not the price.  In the end, you will come to realize that the best days are the days when you don’t need anything extreme or special to happen to make you smile.  You simply appreciate the moments and feel gratitude, seeking nothing else, nothing more.  That is what true happiness is all about.  
  7. Be determined to be positive.  Understand that the greater part of your misery or unhappiness is determined not by your circumstances, but by your attitude.  So smile at those who often try to begrudge or hurt you, show them what’s missing in their life and what they can’t take away from you.
  8. Pay close attention to those you care about.  Sometimes when a loved one says, “I’m okay,” they need you to look them in the eyes, hug them tight, and reply, “I know you’re not.”  And don’t be too upset if some people only seem to remember you when they need you.  Feel privileged that you are like a beacon of light that comes to their minds when there is darkness in their lives.
  9. Sometimes you have to let a person go so they can grow.  Because, over the course of their lives, it is not what you do for them, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them a successful human being.
  10. Sometimes getting the results you crave means stripping yourself of people that don’t serve your best interests.  This allows you to make space for those who support you in being the absolute best version of yourself.  It happens gradually as you grow.  You find out who you are and what you want, and then you realize that people you’ve known forever don’t see things the way you do.  So you keep the wonderful memories, but find yourself moving on.
  11. It’s better to look back on life and say, “I can’t believe I did that,” than to look back and say, “I wish I did that.”  In the end, people will judge you in some way anyway.  So don’t live your life trying to impress others.  Instead live your life impressing yourself.  Love yourself enough to never lower your standards for anyone. 
  12. If youre looking for a happy ending and cant seem to find one, maybe it’s time to start looking for a new beginning.  Brush yourself off and accept that you have to fail from time to time.  That’s how you learn.  The strongest people out there – the ones who laugh the hardest with a genuine smile – are the same people who have fought the toughest battles.  They’re smiling because they’ve decided that they’re not going to let anything hold them down, they’re moving on to a new beginning.

Expect a few more of theses posts as I make some more life changes in the coming months. Eventually I'll get about to posting photos of Koh Mook and the jelly fish, but this posting simply couldn't be held off. Read it, think about it, make a change.