Earlier this month, on July 4th to be precise, it was exactly 5 years ago that I left my office job in London. My personal Independence Day! I was in Poland, about to leave for a project in Germany, and return home after 10 weeks on the road. Having been home a few weeks now, after shaking the exhaustion, it's got me thinking about lots of things.
Back then in 2011 I was in my late 20's, living the London high life, looking for love and proud I'd managed to do 5 years in that crazy capital city. My personal goals were not necessarily to leave London. However I dreamt of freedom from employment, to see more of the world, and generally to improve things in the disability space.
Now I'm in my early 30's. I've managed to survive 5 years of self employment, without income support. I've seen more countries than most people do in a lifetime. I've been involved in projects that have given hope, provided tools, and changed stereotypes around disability. All alongside my beautiful soul mate.
I then started to look at what my new 'five year goals' might look like. The idea of launching as many new projects or visiting as many new countries exhausted me just thinking about it. Not to say there won't be new projects and travels. However goal wise, I'm sensing a change.
Call me cynical, but for the first time I caught myself thinking like an older/mature/wise person. Well definitely older anyway. I realised that right now I value my loved ones, my health, and my current projects most. My dreams are more around having children, a bigger house, and improving current projects for social impact.
Work wise. The goals for my blog, Disability Horizons, Disability United and Accessible Traveller are pretty huge. I want to get businesses, government and society embracing disability and difference. So much research proves the benefits of inclusion. The difference is I've got the momentum, the team, and the knowledge to do it all with less stress and chaos.
I'd have laughed 5 or 10 years ago about how 'sensible' and 'calmer' my dreams have become. But you know what? It all feels so right. To slow down a little. To enjoy the view. To feel the moment.
There's been a few sad moments recently for some of my family and friends. It made me realise that life isn't always about crazy adventures. It's also about the little moments. I will still live by my old mantra - dream big, overcome the challenges, and live the life you desire. Just that now my desires are more about enjoying every day, than always trying to push myself so hard.
I'd love to hear about your current dreams, goals and progress. I am happy to help you with anything I can too :-)
Ceo and Co-Founder Disability Horizons
Co-Founder Accessible Traveller