I have no doubt I would have moved to London at some stage in my early twenties to pursue a corporate career.
Accounting…. Human Resources… Whichever one would have had me, really.
When I was 16, one of my favourite teachers said to me,
“Hannah, I can picture you becoming a successful accountant in London one day.”
And that was the beginning of my Corporate London Fantasy.
I wanted the high rise apartment smack bang in the middle of the city.
I wanted the boss bitch office. My desk surrounded by floor to ceiling windows with the best view over the city.
I wanted the beautiful designer clothes, fresh nails, flawless makeup. The works.
I wanted fancy cocktails every Friday at happy hour in London’s trendiest bars. I wanted it all.
I held on to that fantasy up until my third year of university. I suppose my perspective on life changed a little and I no longer desired that kind of lifestyle. Instead, I began to desire a life of travel.
Visiting Vietnam for my 21st birthday changed me. My sense for wanderlust had awoken.
So arriving into London on May 26th 2017, felt a little bit weird. There were two things running through my head.
Firsty, ‘Damn it’s light for 9.47pm!’
And secondly, ‘London, I’ve made it! I’ve really made it.’
You see, I was beyond excited about coming to Europe. I’ve never been before. I’ve gone to America, Asia, and The Pacific, but Europe always felt so very far away from me. Touching down here felt like an achievement.
It wasn’t until I was out on the streets of London that I started to feel emotional.
While walking the streets, I began to see my life in two different timelines…. The one I am actually living. And one of what could have been if things hadn’t happened as they did.
Instead of rushing through the streets with a briefcase in hand, I was instead strolling the streets with a camera in hand. The stark contrast of the two timelines did not go unnoticed by me.
Just thinking about those two differences, made me realise how much I have changed over the last few years. All those things that I used to want: the high rise apartment, the job, the clothes, the social status. That used to be my idea of success. Now, none of those things come into my definition of success.
Instead it is now this:
Happiness, fulfilment, and treating others with kindness.
Cheesy, I know…
But seriously, those 3 things are what I consider to mean successful.
If I can encompass those three things, I am successful.
And here is what I encourage you to do. Scrape away societies opinion of success. Throw away your friends and families opinions of success. And instead, create your own definition of success. This is the only way that you will really FEEL successful.
Now, either timeline that I could have ended up on is a pretty sweet life, don’t get me wrong. Though I’m stoked with the one I’ve chosen. I’m grateful everyday to be able to see the beautiful places in the world such as London. And I’m excited to see which paths I end up on in the future….
So, what is your definition of success?