Tag: Values (page 1 of 2)

Eurotrip: Leaving on a Jetplane…

The proud Canadian in me is a little disappointed to be missing the festivities and of course, the fireworks, but the part of me that is consumed by wanderlust is quite excited to be heading on my first across-the-pond vacation since 2009. (Yikes! I know…)

Scott and I are heading to the Old Continent for a few weeks; it’s time for a EUROTRIP! We’re attending a dear friend’s wedding in Paris (she’s more like a sister, so it’s a must) via Brussels. Those who love travelling as much as I do are probably sharing my #sorrynotsorry thoughts about missing the National Holiday. Hello, smoother security measures and boarding procedures? Also, it’s a bonus travel day!

Scott hugs Mercedes in New Brunswick (2013)

Scott is humouring me so we get nice travel pics.

Roll With the Punches

As some of you may know, we were in “financial freedom mode” (i.e. paying off loans) so when we heard the news, we had an honest (albeit short) discussion about our priorities; there was no way we were missing the wedding. Sometimes, in life, events come up for us to re-evaluate our priorities. Yes, we were repaying loans and we’ll get back to that mode of “freedom focus” when we return. But we had to ask ourselves why we were even so focused on freedom in the first place. There were many reasons, but a big one for me (as well as for Scott), is to enjoy life and ride the wave of opportunity before it crashes into us. Scott often says he ‘only wants to be happy when he grows up’. It used to be charming, then it annoyed me and now, I see how broad this statement is. I choose to adopt it because it means I follow my heart and I plan, as best I can, for the unexpected. When planning fails, I roll with the punches.

We had to ask ourselves: “what are we doing all this for if we can’t even part-take in our friends’ milestones?”

Scott at Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia

Guess where Scott is? (2013) Hint: It’s in Nova Scotia

A plane ticket isn’t any cheaper if you return sooner, so we decided to make it a holiday. Our first international trip together. It’ll be a golden opportunity to reconnect to each other, to re-discover each other as we discover new (old) parts of the world together and it’ll be a great spiritual practice for us both. It’ll be a time for sharing bits of ourselves that routine tends to put to sleep.

When we’d worked out that we were going, we had to figure out the logistics. We’re pretty proud to say that despite the short notice, this trip is not a debt but planned spending. Rock on, us!

Harmonizing Different Travelling Views

Scott and Mercedes at the Anne of Green Gables House in PEI (2011)

Scott and I at the Anne of Green Gables House in PEI (2011)

My partner and I view travelling a bit differently; he feels it’s a welcome luxury and I feel it’s an essential to balanced adult life. But we’re united in the value of family and friendship that we’re honouring. For me, it’s a much anticipated return to Europe (my last hop was in 2009) but the world changes and it’ll be an altogether new trip to do this trek with my partner. I can’t wait to share my wanderlust with this beautiful person. I want to tell him: “See? THIS is why I want to see the world with you. There’s such wonder. There’s such beauty and I want to share it with you. I want to be a witness to your life. I want you to share my adventures. The world’s a big buffet and although I can’t it like this every day, I want to enjoy every yummy piece of this world.”

Counsellors and therapists always encourage couples to “make quality time for each other” and “try new things together”, which I feel this trip fulfills. They also say that renovations and travel are big tests. I see tests as a rather formalized way of saying you’re practising your life. Yoga is a practice but so are your relationships of any nature. Every day is new and each person evolves so relationships are a dance. I prefer to make mine a connected but fun dance. Missteps will likely happen, as they do in everyday life, but what’s the fun in a perfectly rehearsed waltz? Some days, we’ll be like a tango or a westie dance, but many days are like swing for us; it’s partnership, it’s fun and it’s all about doing it together.

I can’t wait to go adventuring in Belgium, France and Holland. We’ll also be taking scenic and sentimental detours to smell

Mercedes is standing in a garden in King's Landing, NB (2013)

I’m standing in a garden in King’s Landing, NB (2013)

the roses (or the Thames or the Alps, no biggie). Travelling reminds me of my passions, or my love for humankind, or my thirst for learning. It makes me feel alive. For a few weeks, I forget about the humdrum of jobs, responsibilities and other people’s timelines. I remember who I am and I see with my heart. I’m also looking forward to seeing my partner in this light. Let this trip be about love.

While we’re out adventuring, I’ve got a few fun posts for you… and if you’re lucky, I might even post a few short on-the-go updates.  😉

What situations have caused you to re-evaluate your priorities? What choices have you made for your wellness and enjoyment? How does travelling add to your life?


There’s a word that kept resurfacing in the past few months and I’ve decided to pay attention. The idea of “unbecoming” has been coming to me in internet quotes, books I’ve read, conversations I’ve had. Although, the expression has been adopted in a pejorative way to mean unflattering, it stuck.

Unbecoming is defined as:

: not attractive : not becoming

: not appropriate or acceptable for a person in a particular job or position

What if “unbecoming” was the key to our happiness?

What if unbecoming was the gateway to inner peace?

I think it is. Here’s how I got to this conclusion.

Unbecoming BraveBohemainDOTComThe first few years of our lives are spent “learning”. We learn all our lives, on many levels, but the types of learning we do early on is less aware. It’s much less about who we are than it is about how to function. In the process, we inevitably “become” someone. We’re named a birth, into a family, in a place, with a cultural background. We learn what all these references mean. We situate ourselves. We relate to others from our predetermined, subjective, point of reference; the someone we’ve (been) identified as. As we go through life, this someones’ story becomes heavier and heavier with experiences and this someone’s actions, decisions, and reactions become defined by each other. The frame of reference becomes more defined but also more limited in possibilities. The person (soul) who limits themselves to their identity’s frame of reference, whatever format is used here (cars, jobs, family…), stops listening to their guidance. The truth is, the story we tell ourselves about who we are only matters to our “someones”. Who we are – souls – don’t care about stories or typical forms. Our souls don’t care about our family histories, our jobs, our salaries, the houses we live in or the car we drive. Our souls use these as means to an end. Our souls don’t even regard “reasonable possibilities”. We are so much more than the identities we assume and we tend to limit ourselves because that’s what we learn.

Unbecoming is actively shedding parts of our assumed identities that no longer work for us. (Have they ever, really?) It can be compared to someone’s sense of style; for most of us, it’s clearer through choices what suits us. We decide to eliminate, we actively choose to not participate in trends, we refine what feels right and looks good on us. (At least, that’s the hope!) And of course, some styles work for us at certain stages of our lives and not others… we try on personalities and lifestyles and work our way to what ultimately, is “really us”. I see the process of “unbecoming” like me refining my soul’s personal style by taking away the superfluous, the tacky, the ‘age-inappropriate’, the unflattering and the uncomfortable. In so doing, I’m allowing the classic pieces and the few daring ones that act as my secret weapons to nail the “style” that is just right.

Now, hold the phone, I haven’t mastered this skill yet. There are layers of this to be done, at least in my case!

To me, unbecoming means….

That I’ve declined the invitation to conform, to be nice, to keep my head down just for the sake of it.
That I’m bolder about my life choices.
That I’m more honest in my words and actions, and that I’m firmer in my boundaries.
That I say no a lot, but I also say yes to more of what I want or need.
That my heart feels lighter and lighter.
That my head feels clear.
That my body feels strong and healthy.
That my decisions are in line with my values.
That I’m facing my fears about being apologetically who I am.
That I’m facing my fears about being responsible for my life.
That I’m getting closer to my core.

It remains a process that looks a lot like cha-cha, but its by-product is a beautiful dance of mySelf.

Unbecoming might just become a key word for me in my spiritual practice. What can I shed today / this week / this month / this year? Is this choice honouring me, deep down? What does my gut say?

What does unbecoming mean to you? Do you feel like there are habits or beliefs you could shed to be happier and lead a harmonious life?

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