Every decision is like an investment, some are riskier than others. You will always lose one thing and gain another, it’s just how the universe works.
For me, it’s hard to make the small decisions in life. It’s the big decisions that are easier, because in those you choose between things that will take you down different life paths you can’t compare. You simply can’t predict the outcomes of those kinds of decisions before you make them, and you find yourself hovering between the known and the unknown trying to figure out which way to go. In these moments, I often think of a quote by the Chinese philosopher Lao Tzu.
“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes,” he said, “Don’t resist them, that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality.”
The biggest decision I’ve ever made was leaving my home in Barcelona. I lived in Barcelona for 10 years before moving to Amsterdam, so it certainly counts as one of those life changing decisions I was talking about. It wasn’t just about living in one place versus another either, Amsterdam versus Barcelona. You can’t really say one city is better than the other, the decision was more about understanding your own future based on previous experience, one place might have something you’re chasing and the other doesn’t.
Truth be told, I had the perfect life in Spain – perfect job, perfect apartment, perfect girlfriend, a lot of friends. But somehow I questioned all of that. You see, I’m from the outskirts of Barcelona, born and raised. I lived in the same house for most of my life. I didn’t take a lot of chances growing up. What I needed to do was push myself, encounter different kinds of people I hadn’t grown up with and delve into the unknown. For a shy guy like me, those can be scary situations, but when you feel it, you feel it. You have to act on that.
I think my biggest regret is in waiting too long to move abroad. Now I’m 34, still young of course, but it’s one thing to be a student in your twenties and come to this city. It’s an entirely different thing to be a person in their thirties who’s left behind a fully established life and career in another country to arrive in Amsterdam (laughs). Even before I made the decision to move to Amsterdam, the city was full of question marks.
These days, I’m proud of myself. Even when I feel lost, I’m thankful to the Universe for giving me such an amazing adventure. Love is the engine of our lives, and no matter what happens, I’ve got a lot of that.
To bring it back to the words of Lao Tzu, “Let reality be reality, Let things flow naturally in whatever way they like.”
For me, that means something like this:
What’s done is done,
Have faith in the Universe,
Trust in being a good person,
And enjoy the moment.