Are You Living The Life of Your Dreams?

As I was walking to work yesterday deep in my thoughts, I took a moment to stop and look around me. This doesn’t happen often as I am normally too busy thinking of something important or on my phone arranging something important. The bottom line is, there is always something more important to do on the way from the station to the office than to actually enjoy a beautiful day and your surroundings.

I am not entirely sure what prompted this sudden desire to break my chain of thoughts and stop for a moment to “observe” and to “marvel”. It was a warm sunny morning in the City of London. I get off at Bank, one of my most favourite stations in London, and I love the atmosphere in the City early in the morning. I sat on a bench in a little corner park where bankers from Merrill Lynch have their cigarette breaks and looked around. Despite the fact it is August the streets were full of people. Mostly people in suits carrying briefcases on their way to work. Every single one of the passersby was either in a rush, on the phone, reading a newspaper (yes, while walking) or just generally preoccupied (probably thinking of something important).

As I was sitting there, I wondered how many of these people are genuinely happy with their lives (is it just me or do you sometimes wonder too?). Are they all living the life that they always wanted? Have they followed their dreams? How many of these people are free and have the ability to “escape” if they wanted to? I, for one, am not free. I have been walking this route to work for over 2 years wondering from time to time “is that it?, am I always going to be working a 9-5 job which I admit I quite enjoy, but is this the job of my dreams?, am I always going to be tied up to my desk because I have bills to pay?”. I mean, there is nothing wrong with a 9-5 job, but I want to do something that truly inspires me, something that I love and something that brings a sense of fulfilment and accomplishment.

I know what I really want to do. I want to break free from this never-ending routine that a satisfactory Monday to Friday job brings. I don’t want to owe money to the bank anymore and to have to work the job that is just “okay” to be able to make repayments. I don’t need an expensive flat which takes 40% of my main income each month. I don’t want the material things in life anymore: I don’t want a car, I don’t want branded clothes and designer shoes, I don’t want the latest gadgets on the market.  There is nothing wrong with wanting these things and buying these things if you can afford it, but I guess what I am trying to say is that somehow over time my priorities have changed, and believe me, I did not see this coming.

I want to travel the world. For as long as it takes me to get tired of travelling. I want a simple life where I can experience things, not own them. It won’t hurt if I find this simple living somewhere on a remote Thai island. I also want to teach English in China and practise yoga in an ashram in India. I want to volunteer and do something meaningful. I want to give. I want to experience. I want to grow spiritually. I want to meet like-minded people, learn from them and share my own experiences. I want to live in the present where I genuinely enjoy every single day as it comes, without having to worry about my future or dwell on my past. I don’t want to be in a rush, I want to take my time to  live, experience and explore. One day I want to find a long-time partner in life, someone who will be my soul-mate and my best friend, someone with the same values in life, someone with a dream and a purpose in life.

A girl can dream, right?

Well, I am planning to make this dream come true, and I took my very first step in May this year when I decided to pay off my debts. It will take me a couple of years. I can wait. And in the meantime, I will have my dream to motivate and inspire me. You have to start somewhere whatever your dream is, big or small, and I am so grateful I found my way. This is where my favourite quote of all time comes to mind: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. Yes, it seems it is that simple.

Are you living the life of your dreams? Do you have a dream?

Are You Living The Life of Your Dreams - Girl Counting Pennies

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34 Comments

  1. I love this post. LOVE LOVE LOVE! I constantly think about how the Monday through Friday work life is not for me, and that I want to travel as much as I can.

    1. I came to realise that it is not for me either. It’s draining me emotionally. I sit at my desk thinking “There are so many amazing things I could do with my life, and here I am, day after day”. I will get there in time 😉

  2. Great post! I think we all have those moments where we evaluate where we are and where we are going. Its like we are running running running and all of a sudden we stop and think “whoa!” It all hits you at once. I have dreams too and doing my best to make them come true. At the very least, you make an effort, and sometimes those dreams manifest into something else, and that’s OK too. The most important thing is to never give up on things you want!

    1. “Sometimes those dreams manifest into something else, and that’s OK too”. I love this and this is so true! I don’t know where I will end up in my life (I don’t think anyone does) but I will make sure I listen to my heart and follow my dreams whatever shape they take over the years. As long as I can say I am happy, and I mean HAPPY with my chosen path, that’s all that matters.

  3. Dreams change over time and even now I don’t know what my ultimate dreams are but I try to make the most of life everyday which is why if I really want to drink a Starbucks I will LOL. My debt does prevent me from travelling the world and other things but it won’t stop me forever. Like you, I will have my dream to motivate and inspire me. I think this is one of my favorite posts from you Eva!

    1. I agree Wendy, I don’t think dreams are static. We grow, we change, so do our dreams. I do think though that ultimate dreams change in shape slightly but remain more or less the same and perhaps this is what they call “finding your destiny”. If you believe in this, of course 🙂 One day when our debts are paid off, we will be able to create our own life, but sadly for the time being our options are limited. It doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy our lives though. Starbucks coffee? I’d say go for it if it puts a smile on your face 🙂

  4. I guess I´m not living the dream life just yet, but still I do love my life right now. I live in a nice apartment in a good area, have a great job, wonderful relationship with BF, and inspiring studies. However I do miss living a simpler life, as I did when I lived on Gran Canary. I never once had the thirst of getting designer this designer that; but now I often find myself wanting designer this designer that. Not that I ever buy it; as I can´t afford it, but there´s always this want… which I really wish wasn´t there at all. I want to be more content with what I´ve got. After all, I´ve got a pretty good life now! I will always have dreams, some that might get true, some not. But that´s ok. I´d rather have dreams than no dreams at all.

    1. Nice apartment, great job, wonderful boyfriend and inspiring studies. Not too shabby! As long as you are happy, that’s all that matters 🙂 I know I could be happier, I feel that I am not free, that I am dependent and I don’t like this feeling. I want to have the luxury to do whatever I want without being attached to a place or a thing (like a job). In terms of designer things, I think I’m the opposite. I used to WANT all this stuff, I was even putting money aside for a Chanel bag and now I look back and think “really?” 😉 There’s no right or wrong, we’re all different, going through different stages in life. And yes, I am all for dreaming! Without our dreams, we would have no purpose.

  5. Awesome post Eva! Couldn’t have said it better myself.

    On a small tangent, I remember walking through the city every day on the way to uni and in a weird way kind of miss all the suits I used to see on a daily basis. I especially found it comical all the suits walking around with running shoes on. Suits and running shoes are such a great juxtaposition. But I can completely understand why (yes mens leather shoes can get quite discomforting!).

    Anyways, great post, really enjoyed it and share your perspective on life!

    1. Your comment made me smile, Steve. When I first started working in the City, I would look somewhat quizzically at people wearing suits and trainers. Not just men, women do it too. And guess what? 🙂 Last week after the gym I kept my running shoes on to go home. I kept thinking “oh no, I’ve turned into one of them!” 😉 It may not be glamorous, but it sure is very comfy!

  6. I think I’m in the same boat as you, my job is okay, don’t really hate it. But now I don’t want to HAVE to work – I want to work on my own accord. I want to be able to give and to live simply. The more things I accumulate, the more I realize that these “things” won’t bring me closer to my dreams. Instead, I want to invest in experiences.

    Great read!

  7. This is my first time reading your blog. I looooove this post. I am always thinking about ‘What do I want in life? What’s my dream? What’s my purpose?’ I definitely want the simple things like you. I just want to be happy! I have a great family, awesome friends, loving boyfriend, but I’m not doing what I love. I gotta figure out that part of my life. Thanks for writing this? I will be visiting again

    1. Thank you so much for your kind words Sydney! It’s amazing that you’ve got great family, awesome friends and loving boyfriend. My family (apart from my younger sister) lives in another country and I miss them so much! I think it’s so important to follow your dreams, we only live once and the last thing I want is to have regrets.

  8. Posts like this one make me happy because I realize I’m not the only person thinking and feeling this way. I am happy..ish. It’s hard not to be happy living in Colorado. However, being tethered to a job because you have to work to pay off bills really sucks. I don’t mind working and working hard. But I do mind feeling like a drone. Or a rat in a cage. It’s never too late to start living your best life a la Oprah! I can’t wait to hear about your journey.

    1. Thanks Michelle. I am very hardworking and I know I’m good at what I do, but things that I do Mon-Fri don’t really inspire me. I feel stuck sometimes. I love living in London, it’s a great city and I feel blessed, but I also want to be free to leave if and whenever I want, to have this freedom of choice… and I don’t right now.

  9. I’m living pretty close to my dream right now! I still have more dreams and I agree that dreams change over time, just as much as we do. I think always being honest with myself and finding out what makes me happy is key. What makes me happy now, will most likely be different than what will make me happy in 2 years. Traveling at least 4x a year is my dream and I know it will easily come true after I’m done with debt! I love this post and thanks for keeping me closer to my dreams 🙂

  10. I most certainly can relate, it will be nice someday to not be tied down to debt, to be able to travel more, and leave my 9-5 if I ever desire to work for myself again. When I think about things though, I am quite lucky as to where I am at only 24, and I know things can only get better! Keep dreaming, it’s always ok to do as long as you are grateful for what you currently have too! Enjoying the journey is always the most rewarding. 🙂

  11. Fantastic post! I’m not living the life of my dreams by any means but I would say I’m a few steps closer to it than a few years ago when I was stuck in a job I hated. I felt chained to my desk alright at that time in my life.

    Now, I have my hubby and my little girl, I’m self employed which at least gives me some control over the people I have to work with. But I need to break free of debt and that will give me some serious life satisfaction I think.

    I’m sure you will achieve your dream one day soon. 🙂

    P.S. I love watching and observing other people like you have just done!

    1. I’m glad to hear you are a few steps closer to living the life of your dreams. These days I feel exactly the way you felt some time ago, “chained to my desk”. Not that I hate my job, I really don’t, but I don’t love it either. This is not what I want to do with my life. But it’s okay, I will get where I want to be soon, and so will you! 😉

      PS: I’m glad I’m not the only spy out there 😉

  12. I love this post. And I have to say, I’m living a life that is pretty close to the one in my dreams… it’d be nice not to have to work to pay the bills, but I enjoy what I do and who I work with, so I have no complaints. Keep dreaming and making one of your goals happen, Eva!

  13. I am not living my dreams however I am working towards them. I make the most and best of what we have and we don’t complain but we know we need to work harder and enjoy life more. There is so much out there and we are working to ensure we get to the point were we are actually living the dream.

    1. This is really great, Thomas, I am sure you will get there soon! I’m not complaining either and I’m grateful for everything I’ve got. I just can’t wait for the day when I am debt free and get to do what I want to the most: travel 🙂

  14. I loved this post – I tend to people watch, too, and wonder what lives some people live, are they genuinely happy or just going through the motions, etc. At times, it can be scary how I often find myself in a rhythm, and kind of stagnant rather than thriving, you know? I do think I’m taking steps to living my dream of more traveling, financial freedom, and helping others out, and at least try to take steps into achieving mini, everyday dreams. Great writing, Eva!

    1. It’s great you’re taking steps to living your dream, I am on the same journey. Hopefully, one day in the near future I can say goodbye to my 9-5 job and leave London to discover the rest of the world. That’s the dream, that’s the plan 🙂

  15. Hey Eva and thanks for an inspiring post 🙂 Not to brag, but I AM living the life of my dreams and while there are a few things that I could tweak, everything is pretty much inline with how I’ve always wanted to live my life!

    That being said, even living the life of your dreams, there are challenging moments where one might question their place in life. This is actually a good thing because it allows us to live a more reflective life, which I feel is quite important.

    Thanks again for a wonderful post and keep on reminding yourself that those two years will be done before you know it 🙂 All the best.

    Lyle

      1. I’m sure you’ll do fine…and it is a journey so expect a few bumps on the road every now and then…but forge ahead because those bumps indicate that you’re going in the right direction 🙂 Take care and all the best.

        Lyle

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