The eureka moment was after a night out, fuelled with hard liquor and silly pills on a 6am recovery train. I was coming down from a serotonin hit in a cold sweat, my ulcered mouth relentlessly chewing on a piece of gum that tasted like blu-tac.
The only thought that was racing through my mind was “how have you stooped this low?”
Last year I was financially stable, I had disposable money and enough for savings, the catch was that I worked at a crappy cafe and stayed there because it was comfortable. My social life peaked, I was out almost every weekend “living it up”. I was materialistically fulfilled but I didn’t feel in control of my life, I was chasing one short lived high after another. I fantasised about writing full time but I didn’t have it in me to really work at it. Some days I would follow a strict routine; meditate, eat healthy, gym and meet work deadlines but other days I’d binge, overcompensate on social activities, eat junk, smoke cigarettes and in turn struggle to maintain a gym regime; a poor excuse for a direct deposit bill. It was a toxic balance between recklessness and recovery; 2 steps forward and 2 steps back.
This year I’m not as financially stable as I’d like to be; I can no longer fine dine - disposable money is out of the question. Social outings are a rare occurrence, I’m now the person who ditches at 10pm before the night gets really started. I’m vigilant of what I put in my body; monitoring how much salt, oil and calories I consume. I follow a strict morning and evening routine - discouraging distractions and late week night outs. I put all my time and energy into creating what could possibly be the coolest job to have - it hasn’t been all sunshine and rainbows but I’ve never been more satisfied in my life. I can understand that this may not be a very “glamorous” and “appealing” way of living, especially when you’re in your early 20’s but if I had kept going the way I was going - I’d be digging myself an early grave. This type of mindset disciplines you to be in control, to have the freedom of choosing how to live your own life - without the enslavement of having to fulfil an empty void of constant stimulation.
What really triggered it, was that I was sick of just being out of reach of my dreams and only having “untapped potential”. Fuck. That. So you know what I did? Well first of all I had to get off this goddamn train, say goodbye to the silly pills, hard liquor and sadly to my adrenaline-addicted friends. Even more so, I had to assess how badly I wanted to pursue this new life trajectory - I didn’t want to just “kinda do it”, I wanted to be able to chase it - barefoot and rugged without anything and especially myself holding me back. I wanted to be able to only survive on beans and rice for it, I wanted the confidence to live my life without the fear of missing out on my 20’s for it and most of all I wanted to be strong enough to endure the long haul - knowing that I’ll go to hell 100 times before I make it to heaven.
So far I’ve grown to like beans and rice - add a little soy sauce and viola! I don’t feel the ache of missing out on my 20’s, this is my life - my journey, people who don’t harness and maximise their full potential now are missing out on what could be a wholesome and fruitful life. Everyday I’m getting stronger, with the occasional break down here and there, but nothing that has made me think twice - just clarification that I’m going in the right direction. Day by day my vision is getting clearer, the stars are aligning but most important of all my world is changing and in turn I am changing the world.
I did not write this article to impress you with my wisdom (although that is just an added bonus), but to plant the same seed that was planted in me a long time ago by those who were a true testament to themselves. You don’t have to uproot your whole life just yet but let the idea ruminate in the back of your mind until the idea flowers and grows so big that you just can’t ignore it. When you get your eureka moment, take big strides until your running because success is not a destination but a mindset - what will you do in the next 5 minutes?