Don’t wait for the world to be ready

After a long and frigid winter, I realized I needed some rest and relaxation. I had tendonitis in my hands from typing and mousing all day. My ever-aching feet were calloused and swollen. I was having constant migraines. I longed to swim in a big body of water and feel the sun on my skin. I wanted to be care free, with no schedules, alarm clocks, chores or even shoes. I just needed a few days of unadulterated summertime. And dammit! I wanted it now.

I asked my sister, who is a school teacher, if she wanted to go with me on a quick trip down south. We’d wait until she was done the school year and then fly out. But our schedules and vacation goals didn’t jibe and she ended up declining.

My mother had always said that if I wanted to do something, to not wait for others to be ready to come along. Just go!

So I went to Cuba for five days. cuba

And I’m so glad I did. It was exactly the vacation I wanted and when I wanted it. I played in the water all day. Ate when I was hungry. Slept when I was tired and woke up only when the sun told me to. I came back to Canada refreshed, relaxed and raring to go!

Don’t wait for other people to come along on your journey. No one will ever be as invested in you and your dreams as you are. Go follow them when and how it’s right for you.

Brenda, this one is for you.

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Cultivating your dreams

My friend, Leah, does this amazing thing that I admire. Actually she does a lot of amazing things, but this is the one I’m going to tell you about.

She sets goals and works to achieve them. And then she assesses and is willing to say “This isn’t working. Let’s change it.” Not many of us will do that – scrap hard-earned goals that just don’t fit.home

When I first met Leah, she and her then fiance were about to buy their dream house. This was going to be their forever home in a suburban neighbourhood with lots of space for a family to grow in to.

Soon Leah and Rob realized the home was too big with space that they never used but still had to heat and clean.

They had to admit they didn’t have the time or inclination to plant that sweet little veggie garden they’d envisioned, and outdoor maintenance was something neither of them liked.

The mortgage strained their budget and didn’t give them much space for savings or the lifestyle they enjoyed.

Rather than hunker in and make excuses for why this, their dream home, would and should and did work, Leah and Rob re-assessed their dream.

They carefully looked at what they loved about their home and what wasn’t working. The weighed what they could give up and what was a must have. And then they made their move. Literally. They bought a charming but slightly smaller townhouse condo with an almost identical layout and feel to their original home.

Sure, they gave up the suburban dream of a big, detached house with a yard. However, now their mortgage payments and other costs are lower. They don’t have to do any outdoor maintenance and have more time to enjoy themselves.

Most importantly, they are happy.