Europe Explained (Final Part)

Reykjavik, Iceland

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It’s been a process to explain my time in Europe. Catch up by reading part onepart two, part three, part four, part five, part six, and part seven

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I’m not alone when I say that sometimes life sends you into deep spirals, these tailspins of negativity that feel impossible to escape. I never understood what terms like depression or suicidal meant until I experienced them for myself. Not in like an imaginary feeling where I fantasize about having real problems and then shut off a switch in my brain that allows me to escape back to a comfortable reality. I mean REAL PROBLEMS, the kind where when you wake up the next morning, they’re still there. And then when you wake up three months later and these same worries, fears, and anxieties still exist, then yes, something indeed is wrong.

The first time I ever felt this was when my first relationship ended. Life was awful. I walked around like a zombie with my head in the clouds. A haze of sadness engulfed every day of my life. I didn’t know how I could ever live like this, feeling miserable and empty.

For the first week I couldn’t eat or watch my favorite TV show. My body had essentially shut down and refused to acknowledge that life was still happening.

Slowly things got better. Over time, my appetite and annoying laugh returned. But this was almost three years ago, and now I’ve blinked a few times and time has passed faster than I ever thought it would.

As I waded through that maze of dissatisfaction, I told myself that never again would I allow this state of mind to return. In hindsight, to think that would be the most difficult part of my life was foolish. I had so many more mistakes to make, and consequences to then suffer.

A healthy dose of amnesia and repression has buried some of these emotions inside a compartment I never want to reopen.

Don’t worry, for those wanting to read about Iceland, you haven’t been robbed (you’re only a few minutes of reading away!).

Instead of harboring on what makes life tough, I’d rather focus on the good that can come from depths of despair. I’m not religious, but the universe doesn’t give us anything we can’t handle. There is no other way I can rationalize all the crazy thoughts that pour into my head when I fall down a rabbit hole of uncertainty that clouds my judgement.

I don’t know about you guys, but I’m terribly harsh on myself. Not necessarily because I want to be, but because each mistake I make tends to run amok in my brain. It’s like I’ve let loose a muddy dog in a wedding dress store. Everything that’s clear becomes muddled and the idea of ever returning to that once spotless showroom seems impossible.

I suppose that’s how I would describe my head sometimes. I vomit all over the pretty showroom and then collapse in agony at the sight of a mess I have no idea how to clean up. It takes time for normalcy to reappear and remind the brain that all hope is not lost. It was just misplaced.

It might take years of suffering before we realize that we are right where we are supposed to be. That relationship I mentioned a few lines ago? Yeah, it wasn’t meant to be. If it was, I wouldn’t be writing this post now.

And that’s okay. Good things have happened since, which at the end of the day is all most people really want.

Keys to living a good life, prescribed by a man whose net worth is dwarfed by most full-time professions: exercise daily, eat right, drink little to never, and love. Key emphasis on love because that’s the best gift you can give someone.

It’s not to say that doing all these will make you feel good. Fuck, maybe your life is so wayward that good is not a word you can imagine ever being synonymous with your name again. But that’s okay. Instead of striving for good, simply reach for better.

There is no roadmap to happiness, and a reminder: money is not happiness. Success can offer validation, but my little successes still mean nothing compared to the way I feel when I make people feel good about themselves. I’m not talking about just shaking their hand when they walk in the door either. I’m talking a genuine, heartfelt human interaction that leaves both people feeling good about reality.

It’s rare this happens though. Usually when I try to provide emotional care, my words are dismissed or completely misinterpreted. That’s okay though. I shouldn’t be the way I am because I want others approval. I just have to live with the hope that someday enough people of similar mindsets will come into my life and we can harmonize.

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ALMOST TO ICELAND

So, what have I been up to recently? Well, I left Minnesota, went to New York for a week to meet with a client (hope this word doesn’t suggest wealth or affluence). After that I bopped down to Florida to begin a new project, one that has been months in the making. I’m excited; it’s not about the money or the weather. It’s just the opportunity to follow a dream.

One of my best friends recently came to help me out with the project in a consulting-type of manner. He’s one of the smartest people I know, constantly challenging me to be better and ask for more out of myself.

That’s the thing about money: no matter how much I earn, I could never buy him. This is why I stressed earlier the need for having quality people in your life. I don’t know how to make it happen, but I wish I could give everyone that peace of mind, because we all deserve to be challenged, loved, coddled, and told it will all be okay.

Alright, let me get into Iceland. I’ve spent too much of this post digressing.

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It’s 2 A.M. when I get off the plane in Reykjavik and hop into a cab that gouges me for $120. Maybe in the future I can buy those first-class plane tickets that leave at 10 A.M. and arrive just as dinner is served, but right now I’m left to agonize over a taxi fare that’s just bludgeoned my budget.

I came to Iceland as a last hurrah to these last few weeks, a trip through Europe that was everything I could have hoped it to be. I needed a revitalization, an outlet to get my mind right and get back to who I was before immaturity happened and I got way too invested in friends with benefits and Grey Goose. Those superficial dalliances were never going to bring me happiness, but I fought so hard against everyone who tried to tell me otherwise, convinced I was the guy who was going to bust the paradigm.

Thinking of what to write about Iceland has taken me over a month, most of which I spent avoiding this post because it’s the last in a series that has been an absolute privilege to write. I wanted this one to be good, and truthfully, I’m not sure it is right now.

The basics of Iceland: it’s chilly and has attractive women who look like Vikings. Most natives speak three languages: Icelandic, English, and Danish. I thought the Danish was interesting, considering Denmark and Iceland aren’t exactly neighbors, even though they both become frigid in the winter.

I’m not a guy who does well in the cold. I’d much prefer the beaches of Spain or Florida, able to take off my shirt and burn my skin while slaving over abs whose looks fluctuate based on lighting and diet. Attaching happiness to a body part is not a good idea, but as you probably have guessed by now, I’m inherently flawed.

I also don’t like writing travel blogs. I’m thankful for the chance to get to write these stories, but everything usually comes back to either me or the people, because that’s where I excel.

As I sip on a $15 bowl of soup in downtown Reykjavik, it hits me that my life has been a string of failures. Not that dunking bread in a bowl of soup is what I needed to know that I’ve done some really shitty things. To be fair, I committed these mistakes with the best of intentions. That’s not a justification for these missteps; merely an explanation.

Heartbreak, money issues, food poisoning. 2019 has been a year, and it isn’t even over yet. As I pack my things and prepare for a long bus ride to the airport, I begin to understand that my life has a purpose. It’s not to make millions of dollars and sleep with every woman who smiles at me.

My job is to treat people with the utmost respect. That’s really what’s going to bring all of us together in this age of constant conflict being shoved down our throats.

I guess I’m just thankful to be alive, not because I almost fell into a white room and died, but because life is precious. It’s difficult to realize this when you’re healthy and money isn’t a problem. It isn’t until those things have been challenged do we really begin to ask ourselves what kind of person we want to be.

I look forward to continuing to impact others in a positive way. And conversely, I look forward to meeting people who remind me that there is way more good in this world than bad.

 

Peace out, Europe. On to Alaska.

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Interested in buying or selling a home? RE/MAX agent James Eason can help with all your real estate needs.

Get in touch with him today by clicking on this link!

 

 

 

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