The Decision That Changed Everything

Australia: The Decision That Changed Everything

Do you have a moment in your mind that you can trace back to as the moment when everything changed? One moment that makes you say, “Yep, that was the decision that changed everything about my direction in life.” 

Maybe it was a conversation with a friend, and they said something to make you realize that you were pursuing the wrong career – and you made a change. 

Maybe you were trying to work up the courage to ask out your crush, and then your body decided to move unconsciously and do it for you (maybe you married that very same crush!).

Or perhaps you were struggling socially in a new setting and you approached someone – or someone approached you, and then you were introduced to a group of people who really got you and made you feel welcome and appreciated. Maybe they’re your closest friends to this very day.

It could be anything.

I want to share mine with you today.

The day was February 18, 2016. I stepped into Boston Logan Airport with an itinerary that was going to take me to Sydney, Australia. I was going alone; the only plans I’d made were to book 3 nights at a hostel in the city. I was excited, but let’s not pretend I wasn’t feeling a little bit of fear as well.

Where was the fear coming from?

I had flown by myself before – that wasn’t it. I had started over in a new place before – it wasn’t that either. I’d visited other countries, but never by myself. This was the root of my fear. I had no support system to help me if anything were to happen. I was in a foreign country on the other side of the planet! I’ve got great friends and a wonderful family, but I knew no one on the entire Australian continent.

And it’s a pretty big place… 

the decision that changed everything
Here’s a map helpfully marking all of the people I know that live in Australia. 

It was a daunting realization. But I went anyway. You’ll never grow if you run from your fears. I figured I would just try my hardest not to die and I should be fine (truthfully I did an adequate job at best – though obviously I turned out fine). 

My moment was as soon as I stepped out of the doors of Sydney International Airport and into the bright Australian sun – that was the moment I decided I wanted to go in a different direction with my life. I had just undergone 24 hours of travel, and I was exhausted. I didn’t have any phone service, and I no longer had wifi outside of the airport. Which direction led to my hostel? I didn’t have any money (I figured I would just withdraw money once I got to Australia, but I couldn’t find any ATMs…real smart move on my part). But arguably worst of all (in my mind anyway), I didn’t have any food!

But I knew I had made the right decision.

My ears relished hearing so many languages being spoken around me. There were so many people of different cultures, different ethnicities, and different nationalities. I just loved everything about it.

Experiencing all of these new things was fantastic for me. I think most people feel the same way – but it is important to remember what isn’t new that remains important to us. Just as I loved all the experiences I was having from my first time abroad alone, I appreciated all the things in my life that I had maybe taken for granted while I was home.

To be caught in a routine and forget about what’s important – happiness, love, passion, friendship – is easy. You probably had some more words pop into your head.

Some of these cycles can prove quite difficult to break.d

The reason this, for me, is the moment that changed everything, is because it was when I decided that pursuing what made me happy, and pursuing what I was passionate about, was more important than doing what was expected of me (by friends, family, society – they all have expectations for each of us, and some are good, but some are not) and I was going to spend every second I had trying my best to make my vision of the future into a reality. 

I hope that you are also following your passion in whatever way you can. If it seems too hard, or if you think that you can’t for whatever reason, just remember that it is never too late to start. 

“You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction.” – Jim Rohn

I highly recommend watching some of Jim Rohn’s videos on YouTube…

the decision that changed everything
If I can sit on the edge of the world and not fall off this cliff, then you can do anything you want to do. (Katoomba, Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia)

You may eventually look back on some of your actions and remember how they shaped how things turned out. You may even point to one and say, “That was the decision that changed everything for me.” Maybe it was only the first, small decision that you made. The first of many good ones, each a step into the direction that you wanted to go. Or you may not have one such decision in your life, and you may not ever need one. But I hope that if there’s an action that you need to take to steer your life towards your desired future, that you have the courage to take it.

Originally Posted January 14, 2017

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