Ideal place to make decisions

I am in Venice, sitting in a coffee shop as I am waiting for the train connection to my next destination. I hear playing “Adventure of a lifetime” from Coldplay and I instantly feel cozy, regardless all the people around me, talking quite fast and loud and all the pizza-pasta smell. Two gentlemen next to me are enjoying an espresso over many stories. I don’t understand much Italian, still I feel they are just cherishing some more instants of their everlasting friendship.

You might wonder why am I taking this time to write these lines instead of browsing over the news feed, read some articles or open the book that I brought with me. During the last team gathering in December, a fact that I realized and I wanted to do since ever is to write about topics of my interest/things that I am passionate about. A take away from the meeting was to put time and ideas into this and since December I started writing. The reaction I got was fantastic – from appreciations, to question marks to make me think about and feedbacks to improve.

Back to the topic I am exploring, I think we are all aware of the impact digitalization has on our personal and professional life. We have entered the virtual world, where working remote is something very common, working from home is getting more and more common and being part of virtual teams is already more than normal. Similarly it goes for the personal life, nowadays it is very easy to keep in touch with friends from the other side of the world, video conferencing is quite accessible and though physically we are not in the same place, spirit wise we are together. Which personally, I find quite fascinating and worrying in the same time. I mean, it is great how easy it gets to be connected, yet I feel that we are losing our touch with the real things – like nature, animals, enjoying face to face meetings and the beauty of companionship, having real life feelings and activities. Maybe this is why education nowadays also faces challenges due to inability to adapt faster to the new era.

Since I was a student I imagined myself having a job that allows me to travel, meet people, see places, exchange ideas, learn new perspectives about life, enjoy being put in new different situations and enrich myself from exploring different facets of what normality is to some people. In this sense, many of the decisions that I took were guided by the travelling desire. In fact, what travelling means to me is much more than this. Travelling to me means that I am alone with myself, that I have the chance to look at new perspectives without being dragged down by my past, without being afraid to be judged just because someone knows me in a way and doesn’t expect me to be different, allows me to embrace new much easier and that because in another place it is so normal, and it is a gate to endless possibilities which otherwise would have never get explored.

Last year this time I was sitting in car driven back to Aguascalientes from Guadalajara in Mexico. The thought that stroke me that time was “Ana, if you would have all the money in the world, what would you do? Would you be going back to Romania and continue doing what you are doing every day?”. The answer was that I don’t know, maybe I would continue do that, however some things needed to change post this thought. This is how I decided to give up the studies I started and I was so disappointed about but didn’t have the courage to stop, buy that gadget I always wanted and focus on living a little bit more the life that makes me happy.

With every travel that I am doing, I am taking time to think about little things and bigger things and write down decisions, thoughts, learning, ideas and what is there that I really feel like doing next. Airports, train stations and the coffee shops around them became for me gates to perfect worlds, gates that allow me to explore sides of the future that in another context I wouldn’t have the chance to analyze, reflections of aspirations put into words and actions and also moments of win against the river of expectations everyone has from us, the fast paced world we are living in and the digital era shaping our reality.

Coldplay in this song has a line saying “we are diamonds taking shape”. To me, I feel I am becoming a little bit more of a diamond with every travel that I do and all the actions triggered by the experience lived. Hence the greatest place for me to make some brilliant decisions is not the office desk, the cozy sofa from my living room or the noisy bar I meet with my friends every now and then. It is in airplanes, airports, train stations and moments when I have the chance to be just me with myself and the world.

Article initially published on LinkedIn at this link: