- Posted in: Adventure, Career, Fitness, Health, Inspiration, Life, Play, Thoughts, Travel
- On: 31 December 2015
2015 has to have been one of the most challenging years of my life and I honestly felt at times I just wasn’t going to make it. But I hung in there and it turned out to be a pretty epic year as I rediscovered a whole other side of life. So in no particular order, here are 15 epic moments I experienced this past year.
In 2014 I departed on a contract as a Creative Director at JWT Hong Kong. I got to work on several regional projects for Nikon Asia and a few other local and international brands. It was a tough experience living there, fresh food was scarce, serviced apartments were small, gyms were expensive and I worked all the time, but I found my groove and welcomed in 2015 in a new apartment that felt like a home. While my adventure was quite suddenly cut short and I returned home in March, experiencing living in Asia was an eye opener and something wonderful I’ll never forget.
My most recent accomplishment, it took 40 years before I finally got on a surfboard and I loved every moment of it. I have wanted to do this for the longest time, but thankfully on my last trip to Cape Town, there was some good weather and I finally went to Muizenberg, hired my gear and after a quick tutorial, I was paddling away trying to catch my first waves.
Walking, Hiking & Forest Bathing
I love walking, it’s something I enjoyed doing in Hong Kong all the time. There is a freedom to being abl to walk outside and explore the city we live in. While it’s hard to do in Joburg, other than walking in malls, I have spent a fair amount of time in Cape Town where I walk along the beaches, the city streets and of course the promenade.
I have also started doing trails/hikes with my friends along Table Mountain. I have so much to explore and even some of the trails I have done a few times, offer the same magical experience. At sunrise or sunset, these walks bring me closer to nature, give me the freedom to walk and offer up some incredible views.
A good friend has introduced me to walking in the many forests in Cape Town, which he calls forest bathing, soaking in the miracle of natures tall trees and feeding our souls with its beauty. It’s a fantastic way to escape the city vibe and reconnect with the land and breathe in some fresh air.
I discovered that I really enjoy waking up early and starting the day with a good old dance, with like-minded people. With our wireless headphones we collectively wakeup to celebrate the sunrise with a stretch, a hug, smiles, high fives, get really goofy and expressively dance. I have learnt that the more I let go, the more fun I’ll have.
I was never a great skater, but I have always enjoyed skating. After years of collecting boards, which I use to hang on my office wall, I decided it was time to kit one of them out and start skating again as I have noticed the trend pick up while at the coast. I don’t expect that I will do any crazy tricks or frequent a skate park, but I do enjoy riding a board again and sharing the experience with friends.
My job allows me to travel to Cape Town just about every week, so I have rediscovered my love for the mother city and everything it offers. I have always regretted moving back to Joburg, so I really do try to take advantage of my opportunity and make the most of time at the coast. It’s absolutely magical there, surrounded by the ocean, beaches and the magical mountain. I will make this place my home again as it offers me the type of lifestyle I want.
Not satisfied anymore working in the Advertising industry, I decided to take the leap into product design and joined Standard Banks mobile team. I cannot be so bold as to say I will never work in Advertising again, but being on the client side and working with a team who strives to build something useful, people actually want to use, is a refreshing change in my career.
This is 40
I turned 40 and I remember being young and laughing when people commented that life begins at 40, but if the past 4 months are a sign of things to come, it truly does. Yes I lack the youth I once had, but I feel younger than ever inside, I feel great and I am excited for what the next half of my life will bring.
For years I have played down CrossFit and despite hearing how incredible this training was, I believed CrossFit to be more of a cult based on what I had seen and heard. But as they say, don’t knock it until you try it. So a good friend convinced me to go and I absolutely loved it and feel it has contributed a lot to some much-needed weight loss and being generally fitter.
One of the things I struggled with while in Hong Kong was food and I really changed a lot of eating habits, which have made me realise just how much we over eat in SA and waste. I shop small now, I am not a foodie, so eat out of necessity and through the help of some friends have started ridding my body of excessive sugar intake, reduced the amount of meat I consume and have basically become fruitarian. While I don’t want to define myself by what I eat, I am eating cleaner and healthier than ever and I believe this will greatly contribute to me looking and feeling better, inside and out.
I had the great privilege of being able to share some of my knowledge as I began teaching again thanks to Dave Duarte and the team at Treeshake. I designed a course which is now taught by the team, but enjoyed teaching it too.
In an effort to try to move to the city where my heart is, I took a road trip on my own to Cape Town and stopped off both there and back to see family and friends. Travelling alone gives you plenty of time to reflect, observe without distraction and to be with one’s self. While I did not secure the opportunities I was hoping for, driving through this beautiful country was a welcomed experience.
I for the first time in a really long time, am very much aware of the changes going on within myself. Every day I see the differences the new experiences and habits I break and make are evolving me into being the best version of myself.
I have reconnected with more friends from the past than any other time in my life. For the longest time I felt myself distancing from wonderful people, but in 2015 that all changed as I reconnected with so many people who have gone through similar journeys as mine and who have come to the same realisations. I am truly grateful for every reconnection I have made and look forward to the wonderful experiences we will have together. I am also really fortunate to have made some new friendships due to the willingness to experience new things and hope they will be long and full of laughs.
I will probably shock a few people, but I have not been loving life, I would say I had almost given up on finding any new joy, but these past few months, as I clawed my way out of some tough situations, I have a new lease on life and couldn’t be more excited to enjoy each and every moment, experience new things and open my mind, body and soul to the miracle of this wonderful world we live in. I have an ever growing list of things I want to experience, so follow my feeds if you want to keep up. I am aware, I am alive and I am excited about the possibilities.
Bring on 2016!