Am I a Cat or a Dog? (Or Why It Might Be Time to Reset My Priorities)

London, UK

If you have been reading 100 Miles Highway for a while now, you must have noticed that getting all personal online is not really my thing. Sure, from time to time, I’ll drop a post on why I am not traveling full time or my deepest regret from my 2 years in Switzerland. However, most of the time I focus on experiences and places.

Well, lately I’ve felt the urge to write about another sort of experience – one that goes way beyond expat life, travel and adventure. One that is much more personal.

For the past few months I’ve slowly moved away from being the person I defined (and defended) myself as for all this time – a girl that aims to conquer the financial world and become a well-respected personality within the industry, that pictures herself with a beautiful loft in a big metropolis and traveling to the main hubs for business and escaping, from time to time, to deserted places – to becoming someone I can’t even define anymore.

All of a sudden, things I considered important in life don’t feel important anymore.

In contrast, I’m starting to consider life alternatives I had never even dared to think of before. I’m starting to feel that my priorities might be shifting towards something else. Maybe they’re are not even shifting. Maybe they had always been somewhere else, but I had been lost all this time believing they were here.

As I was explained earlier today:

It’s as if a cat believed it was a dog and always hang out with dogs barking, biting stuff and running after bikers… and suddenly realized that, well, it’s actually a cat.

I’m not regretting what I’ve done with my life so far, don’t get me wrong. I’ve lived in 7 cities in 4 countries in the last 10 years. I have developed a solid base in a highly competitive industry – an industry, that truly interests me. I’ve learned that mountains make me smile even more than beaches do. I’ve become to appreciate wine over beer (and even over a glass of Hendrix tonic with two slices of cucumber) and have developed a love for fine food. Now, I’m comfortable being on my own. I’m more organized and more responsible. I’m even on time (more often than not – I’m still sort of spanish, remember?). I’ve learned a lot on my way here, and I’m pretty sure that these experiences have made me (and are still making me) a better person.

So what’s my plan then?Am I going to set off and travel the World?

As exciting and tempting as this alternative life may be, I’d have the feeling I’m running away. I’ve got something to solve over here: I need to find myself and understand what really makes me happy. I need to find out whether I’m a dog or a cat or none of both.

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13 Responses to “Am I a Cat or a Dog? (Or Why It Might Be Time to Reset My Priorities)”

  1. MeriMarch 22, 2012 at 5:04 AM #

    good luck with the soul searching- you’ll find your way!

  2. JennaMarch 22, 2012 at 8:51 AM #

    I can completely relate to this. I used to want to conquer the business world, to become a true corporate woman who spent her time in elevators, board meetings, and conferences. However, the past few years have made me wonder if that really is what life is about, or should be about. I want to have a family one day, I want to travel the world, I want to do work that I love, etc. I’m still not to a point where I’m ready to quite my job or stop pursuing my post-grad degree, but at some point in my life I hope to be able to have a job which is flexible enough to allow me to pursue other interests that make me feel alive and happy and invigorated.

    xxx
    Jenna

  3. ChristineMarch 22, 2012 at 11:39 AM #

    I still feel this way even though I’ve been in my “alternative life” 2+ years now! Sometimes I think I need to get started in a career, while another part of me says no, now’s the time to travel. I go back and forth. Wishing you the best of luck in finding your path, whatever it may be!

  4. Francy RMarch 22, 2012 at 5:31 PM #

    This summer on the Santiago way I found myself to be a dog, while my friend is a cat! Hope you’ll eventually find your way! Good luck!

  5. ZhuMarch 22, 2012 at 9:59 PM #

    I constantly try to redefine my priorities and to find out what I like best but at the end, I think some kind of balance is good. I’d love to try out as many lives as I could but hey, mine isn’t that bad!

  6. ArianaMarch 23, 2012 at 11:36 AM #

    I think these transition times (although absolutely daunting!) are really exciting– where will you end up? Who will you discover yourself to be? It was a time like this that led us to live overseas, and I am so glad I was willing to rock the boat a bit in terms of my identity and what I wanted out of life. It’s not easy, but it’s good work to do!

  7. RossMarch 23, 2012 at 12:25 PM #

    I have been right in that place where you are, changing and realizing that the things seemed to be important to us really weren’t that important. At one point I had climbed the corporate ladder and had a great job being payed very well. Things were great and I thought things were the way I wanted them. When that was all taken away due to my disability it changed everything, and all of a sudden the things I had valued weren’t important anymore. Anew set of values started to appear. Good luck in that journey of yours in figuring everything out!

  8. RossMarch 24, 2012 at 2:27 AM #

    I am new to 100 Miles Highway. The title of this post caught my attention. I have been trying to find myself and understand what really makes me happy for as long as I can remember. And I believe I am happy and comfortable with who I am. The world changes, life changes and I change too. It’s a constant struggle to figure it all out. One of my biggest hangups is never forgetting about the opportunity costs of my choices. I know I can’t do and be everything and when I choose one thing I loose the opportunity to do and be other things. I think you’ll be fine because you are aware of your feelings and are trying to understand yourself. I wish you good luck but it will probably take some good effort too.

  9. Felicia@Tours and TravelsMarch 24, 2012 at 9:48 PM #

    I hope that you’d be able to focus on your goals in life. You shall conquer your dreams. Just believe in yourself.

    -Felicia

  10. Monica | The Travel HackMarch 27, 2012 at 6:45 PM #

    I love this post because I can so relate to it. I have no idea if I’m a cat or a dog either. I might even be a rabbit or a pony, hell, I could even be a penguin, I don’t know! Some days I want to pack my bags and travel forever and then the next day I want to buy a house and get a puppy and settle down for the rest of my days. At the moment I’m just trying to live every day as it comes and see what animal I grow into.

  11. Megan JonesMarch 29, 2012 at 8:37 PM #

    I have also really reevaluated my priorities lately. It can be a really hard process to be honest with yourself. You are very brave to share this experience with all your readers. I think it can be really helpful to think about what you truly want, because you are never going to get it if you don’t make it a priority. It is amazing what we can accomplish if we only make it a priority.

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