I love those moments. Those moments when you realize that something big is happening. Game changing moments. When you’re down on your knees, in tears, dancing in the middle of the street. All at the same time.
I was glad enough to experience these moments a few times in life. Moments of glory during my swimming career. Moments of pure love for someone. Moments of quiet and peace with myself under the northern lights north of the polar circle. And the moment when you overcome your fear and feel invincible.
Recently, so last year and this year, there have been three of these moments related to my studies and career. They were more intimate than I could every describe here and I treasure every single one of them.
The first was, when I was accepted into my Master program in Sweden. I learned about it when I was at the marketing bureau I worked with at the time. My colleagues were probably pretty shocked by my outburst… But this meant that I could go back to my beloved Sweden and study politics, which was exactly what I had wanted. Another similar great moment was, when I learned that I was chosen for the double degree program in Shanghai – as the only one of my program. I had longed for the decision for weeks and was getting really stressed out at that point. The craziest of all happened in between, when I was at my school’s library in Göteborg and got an E-Mail by the embassy in DC offering me an internship, which I had never remotely considered to be possible to happen (yes I applied, but who knew?!). I hugged the next best stranger on a copy machine (mind you: this was Sweden! You don’t hug strangers. Ever.), I cried in public, ran outside cause people looked at me weirdly in the library and danced on the street. I behaved like a mad person. Why am I telling you all of this? There are two reasons:
- These are the moments I’m living for, and you should, too. Go for great, go for basically impossible. Sometimes it happens – more often than you think it will. And it’s so worth it! Dare to dream big!
- There are some moments in your life in which you can feel that they are changing everything. And sometimes they are connected to certain people, that made an impact on your life that they have no idea of. Thank that person today. Thank that person who made a difference in your life, even if it was only a small gesture or a thought they planted in your head.
I have never told her this, but: For me this one game changing thought was planted on a car ride home from a research conference in Bavaria. Had my then colleague Veronika never been in raptures about her exchange semester in Sweden, or hadn’t we both been in that car that very day, she would never have inspired me to apply for an exchange semester at Jönköping University in Sweden the next day. I would maybe never have learned about myself what I have living in Sweden for the first time, which was a lot. I would probably never have studied my Masters in Sweden, wouldn’t have discovered my love for international politics and diplomacy. Would maybe never have gotten my internship with the foreign service and would surely not live in Shanghai today. So thank you, Veronika, for sharing your enthusiasm – it has changed my life.
Please go spread your enthusiasm, folks, and thank those who have made a difference for you.
These magic moments are the ones I turn to when in doubt. When I’m overwhelmed and question my decisions. In meditation. They remind me of who I am. Moments of pure happiness, safety and success. Reminders that good things happen more often than we think. And guides where to go, where to find happiness.
I can’t wait for the next one of these moments – I know it’s out there waiting.