Hey friends! I've started a new series in which i'll be highlighting inspiring people who I think are living deliberately. These people I introduce will be from all over, doing all sorts of things, big and small, far and wide---from jet-setters to farmers to teachers to musicians, and beyond. They're simply people who have truly captured the essence of living a life with positive intention.
My first guest is Nicole from La Mia Vita!
Nicole has done all sorts of traveling. She has lived abroad on multiple occasions, most recently while getting her master's degree in Spain! She left everything familiar behind to venture into the unknown and teach English to little ones in Madrid!
She's now living in San Francisco again! Nicole leads such a beautiful life, constantly exploring her surroundings and spending time with loved ones. She takes ridiculously gorgeous pictures of it all, too!
What does living deliberately mean to you?
Living with intention. Living with the intention to do the things your heart wants you to do. Doing those things even if you're scared or would rather stay within your comfort zone. We have no idea how much time we get in this life and I want to live my life with intention, purpose and knowing I'm living everyday to my fullest.
What made you decide to get your master’s degree in Spain?
I studied abroad in Italy in college. After those 5 glorious months of adventure and travel I knew I would move back to Europe again. After 6 amazing years in San Francisco, an ending job and some not so great relationships, I knew that was the time to step far out of my comfort zone and move abroad solo. It was now or never. I was $%^& terrified but I HAD to do it.
What is your favorite memory from living/traveling abroad?
Honestly, the really hard days. Those first few months where I didn't speak any Spanish. Feeling so lonely. Remembering how confused, disoriented but at the same time in awe of my surroundings. The days I had to deal with situations in Spanish and just wanted to sit on the curb and cry. But, I got through it! I learned Spanish! I traveled all over the country and Europe! I made friends! I learned how to be alone. The beautiful, interesting, historical places I visited are of course amazing memories I wouldn't want to give up. But, the knowledge that I am capable of getting through difficult obstacles is the most important memory I will have and use forever.
How did living abroad change your perspective of home?
While moving and living abroad alone was such an amazing experience for me, I'm not sure I would ever do it again. I truly understand the saying, "home is where your heart is" and like you, Stefanie, said, "It's people that matter". I absolutely plan on traveling for the rest of my life, and I hope to live abroad again with that future someone special, but home will always be where my family and friends are.
You also live a really fun and inspiring life in San Francisco! How do you keep the adventure alive at home?
There are so many places I haven't been, things I want to do and places I want to see in California and in the US so I've made it a point to make a list of those things (just like I made a list of the European things I wanted to do when I lived there). Almost every weekend from now through April is planned with either a trip somewhere, an activity within the city, a day trip or something random like a taco crawl through the Mission District. It's easy to get caught up in day-to-day life and save the adventure for those vacations or special trips, but you have to remember to make your own adventures in your own backyard.
Any new adventures in the making?
Always! Lot's of San Francisco adventures, day-trips and weekend trips around California, and the beginning planning of Europe in the summer!!
Isn't she wonderful?! Nicole is such a perfect example of someone who constantly seeks out inspiring adventures, while also keeping in mind that it's people that matter the most! ;)
Thanks so much Nicole! Everyone make sure to check out Nicole's blog at La Mia Vita!