6 months ago we walked away from everything we knew. We turned our back on our seemingly “successful” corporate careers, on steady pay cheques and fairly guaranteed futures to leap into the unknown (to us) of freelancing and travel.
Over this past month we created our first YouTube video (Check it out here) and in this process we went through bits and pieces of footage we had taken over the last year. One thing that struck us from some of those first clips through to the present day, was how much we have physically transformed. JP particularly. At the beginning of this year, when he turned 30, he was physically and mentally stressed more than ever and that was clearly showing in his appearance. He had lost a lot of weight and his skin was taking on that grey, unhealthy tinge of someone who never saw the sun and was surviving on little sleep.
For both of us, our sleep patterns were disturbed, most nights only getting 4-6 hours and on those nights we did sleep a full 8 hours, it was restless and full of anxiety ridden dreams. We were really battling to get any movement in our days because of the hours demanded of us, and when we did have a few spare moments we were both so drained that the only action we could entertain was a night spent on the couch watching mindless tv, and ordering take-outs.
We knew we wanted more and as mentioned before (but incase you are new here) when I (Sarah) ended up in hospital from a breakdown, we knew that it was time we made a change and imperative that we made it soon. In December 2020, we went off on a little trip to the Underberg, South Africa (Check it out here) and we reconnected with each other and ourselves. We spent that entire trip talking about the kind of life we envisioned ourselves having, the kind of risks we were prepared to take and what we needed to do in order to make this our reality. One thing became extremely clear. We needed to make a drastic plan, we needed time to recoup our lives and health and the only way to do so, was to leave our corporate lives. Both of us!
So we started to develop a plan. Lucky for us, a few months prior we had started a large savings plan (we had been unhappy and wanting to travel for a long time) and started to funnel as much money as possible each month into this account. We then gave ourselves a deadline to leave our jobs. For us, a time period of 3 months seemed as much as we could handle and so we handed in our resignations straight away to ensure that we could not back out. We gave our company 3 months notice and stuck to that deadline.
On May 03 2021, we woke up, went into the office for the last time since we started working from home to hand back our electronics and equipment, it was official, we were on our own as freelancers. The real journey had began.
We began the process of setting up our own Architecture and Creative Studio and started accepting work with other creatives. Our company is in its infant stage and will no doubt shift and grow with us, but we are so pleased with the progress we have made so far, and all that we have learnt about ourselves and the lifestyle we want.
We cannot believe how quickly 6 months has gone, how much we have grown and shifted. Every week we wake up to a new challenge or a new way of thinking. We are constantly moving, adjusting, readjusting, learning and unlearning. Some days it’s overwhelming and we do struggle with the unknown however we are learning in those moments to strip back, lean on each other and focus on what brings us peace and joy. Most days though, we cannot believe that this is our life now. We are so full of gratitude that we have been able to come this far in 6 months.
It has absolutely been a bit of a roller-coaster ride to say the least but in the past 6 months we have learnt 7 very valuable things:
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