Thanks to Ben Huberman for this challenge👍
5 changes in my life that resulted in a better, healthier, more fulfilled new me.
This is an interesting challenge for me as so much has changed in a short period of time. Ultimately all these changes have been for the better, although at the time I maybe did not think so.
ENGLAND the old
I was born and raised in England, known for its dreary unpredictable weather. Life was dull by the time my husband and I had reached middle-age, we wanted to move somewhere new.
HUNGARY the new
Hungary in Central Europe gave us all the opportunities we were looking for. Cheaper cost of living, a peaceful rural setting, wonderful seasonal weather and the opportunity to own our first dog.
ALCOHOL AND ME
This is a tough one for me to talk about as I am ashamed that I let myself become alcohol dependent, drinking all day and behaving like a functional alcoholic. I particularly liked vodka, loved the feelings it gave me and used it as a social tool to have fun. Little did I know what damage it was doing to me. I ignored the signs and just carried on. Everything massively changed when we made the move to Hungary.
We both smoked hundreds of cigarettes in England, it was our way of relaxing and socialising with others. I was a much heavier smoker than my husband, easily 20 a day, sometimes chain smoking when I was stressed. Our home smelt of stale cigarettes all the time, there were tab ends everywhere and I didn’t realise what a disgusting waste of money habit it was until we totted up how much money we had inhaled and burnt! We also had a good discussion about the obvious health implications. Time to think about quitting.
Me, I was English speaking and nothing else, my husband on the other hand speaks 9, yes 9 languages fluently!! He is from Lebanon and already he had a head start as they learn and speak 3 different languages from birth. I was in awe of him sometimes and wished that I could be proficient in just one other language! I suppose he must have an excellent memory. I have tried to learn Spanish in the past but failed miserably and lost interest as I was not very motivated. Things changed dramatically when we made the move to Hungary.
NO TIME to write
I have always loved to write, but seemed to have no time to sit and write anything constructive. Over the years I have only managed to write journals and diaries. I had no ‘me’ time, or should I say I did not create any ‘me’ time because I was too busy drinking alcohol and socialising! One of my journals details a very happy period in my life, when I first met my husband and had always dreamt of writing it into a memoir. They stayed unrealistic dreams in England until we moved and became expats in Hungary.
On the 1st May 2019 I gave up drinking alcohol, but by the 23rd May I became very ill and was rushed to hospital suffering with Pancreatitis and blood poisoning. I had withdrawn very badly and nearly died! Thankfully the Hungarian health care was superb and I am here today to tell you that my NEW life without alcohol (nearly 1 year) is amazing! I shall be celebrating on 1st May 2020 my first year of sobriety.
A change of environment, a new country and new house rules. I choose to use an E-cigarette to help me quit, my husband said he could do it on his own but sadly was unsuccessful. Our new home in Hungary was completely renovated with brand new nicotine free furniture and appliances, my new rule was if you want to smoke, do it outside (which he does). I LOVE the new smoke free me, no smelly breath, smelly clothes or stinking hair, no nicotine stained teeth or fingers. Now my goal is to quit the e-cig… but all in good time.
What do you do when you move to a new country with one of the hardest languages to learn and understand? Well, you get stuck in and LEARN it like I did. We had moved to a small rural village with no English speakers and had to learn Hungarian to get by, basic stuff at first, like supermarket shopping, paying bills, asking directions, numbers etc. It helped tremendously talking with the locals although they talked very fast sometimes. We use Google Translate and I am learning through apps on my phone, I am slowly getting better.
TIME to write
I am truly happy to say that one of my goals I set out for myself is coming true. I now have an up and running blog (you are reading it now) and I am halfway through my memoir I dreamt about penning. I have joined online courses about writing, conferences about blogging and really got my brain working again. I set aside time everyday to write whatever I feel like writing. It has become an addiction that is not health threatening and it makes me feel good about myself which I have not done for many years.
So there you have it 5 changes I made that have proved to be rewarding, healthy and very fulfilling. To add to this we have saved a good deal of money, drinking alcohol was expensive, we can now spend the money saved on our new home and garden or whatever takes our fancy.
Thank you for reading, you are very welcome to make comments, I really do appreciate them. Have you made any new changes during your life and how have they helped you?