I have discovered an essential part of myself that I was not aware of before. My trip to Amsterdam has redefined my human animal. I now know that the ability to adopt to a new environment is the key element for my happiness and development. Morphing requires pain and suffering. It’s a test, a struggle, both mentally and physically.
Mentally painful when you find yourself surrounded by new people, people you do not know. People who will judge you by their own agendas and perspectives. This is a great opportunity to test yourself. In the case of my travel I’ve put to work my social skills. I’m good at observing human behavior. I can read people pretty well. By the way they walk, by the way they talk, by the way they dress, and by a couple of first sentences that comes out of their mouths. Although I leave a big margin for error (someone person might come off as a jackass at first glance, then later after a beer or two, they open up and you find out that your judgment was shit). I would say I’m right about 75% of the time. This ability to examine people, helps me navigate through the changing environment. I invest my limited time in people who have the right “vibes”. People with passion, knowledge, stories and the techniques for a better living. I exchange ideas. I listen. I listen with my heart and not my brain. I try to see the world from their perspective.
Physical pain is much more simple. Let’s say for example that you are thirsty as fuck. The stores are already closed as you checked into the hotel late at night. The prices at the hotel counter are stupid out of proportion, so you go to your room and drink three cups of tap water. As you find out in an hour, the tap water in the city you are staying is not filtered that well. You get food poisoning from drinking tap water. You get a nasty headache, you want to vomit, your stomach feels on fire. Pain. Simple.
In the above scenario you might start to panic. Your only companion in your room is that bacteria you have in your gut. That little friend of yours that is wreaking havoc. Tomorrow is your first day in the new job and currently you feel like dying. Your mind starts to produce hairy thoughts. Thoughts of self-doubt, thoughts of becoming a victim, thoughts of weakness. This type of a scenario combines both, mental and physical pain. If this feeling starts to emerge you immediately need to take control of this emotion. Tell yourself the following “I’m in control and not my emotions. This emotion that my body is feeling is not me. This emotion is useless at this point. I have control of my emotions. I do not control outside events.”. Although it was your decision to drink that water, it was not your decision to get sick nor your fault that the bacteria was there.
People have been adopting since they jumped down from the trees. Perhaps even earlier, when they came out of the ocean to live on the trees. Or perhaps even earlier still. Perhaps life itself is the ability to morph. If you don’t morph you die.
Being able to adjust to a new surrounding is a great feeling. Once you gather the information on what you can use or not, who you can trust, where can you go to get food, where you can go to train, it’s like “Awwww, I fucking made it!”. It’s a primal feeling, it’s a sense of accomplishment, a taste of survival. It feels like the genes of my ancestors have been put to work. Unlocked, awaken. People have been hunter and gatherers for a long time. I think I can really tap into this feeling by traveling and meeting new people, new brains, new ideas. It’s like some new blood has been pumped into my veins. It feels really primordial to be able to leave your comfort zone, put yourself in a unstable environment and see if you can manage. You took a leap of faith, so you either swim or you drown. There’s nothing in between.
Once you adopt to a surrounding, you realize, how little of the things you own are actually critical for survival. I came to Amsterdam for 12 days with a really small suitcase. I used to pack like 4 pairs of shoes. One pair of business boots, two pairs of sneakers, a pair of running shoes. This time I did my research. I packed only 1/3 of what I would usually pack and you know what? It’s enough.
If you’re on high level of morphing, you can substitute a lot of what you are missing. You can use the surroundings to work for you and not against you. While on my trip, I felt an urge to work out. I did not want to go to the gym as that is boring and does not hit my sweet spot. I was walking around, checking the neighborhood for a place that I can do some pull ups and I found a perfect spot. I just had to take a 10 minute walk around the area. This place was not even on google maps.
When it comes to traveling, it’s also a way to test your knowledge. You can now try the tools you gathered by reading, listening to podcasts, etc. Social skills, courage, asking questions, asking the right questions, handling stress, handling fear of the unknown. Travel and morph.
What I learned during this trip:
- You cannot plan everything. Expect shit to go wrong. Unexpected things outside your control are not your fault. Don’t get anxious, don’t panic, don’t get stressed. Detach from the situation in the moment you feel something bad has happened. If it’s outside your control, fuck it, swallow your ego, let it go, accept it. Example: Paying the extra local tax (90 Euro) for the hotel reservation, which cut my food pensions by two days, but like Jocko Willink says – “Good”. This shit happened for a reason. I can now use fasting mode to clean out my body for those two days, profit from something that seemed at first as unmanageable and bad.
- People are people. Don’t matter the skin color, everybody wants the same things. Happiness, health, wealth, mind peace, connection to something that is higher.
- Books and podcasts really do help. They help with English language, they help to navigate in a world that keeps on changing.
- Asking questions does not hurt. The more you ask, the more comfortable you will feel with asking. The more you feel comfortable with asking, the less mistakes you will make. The less mistakes you make, the more time, money and emotions you will save.
- Calisthenics are the best way to train. Even if you don’t find a workout park/bars near your hotel or the place you stay, you can still train in your room. All you need is your muscles and a little bit of free space.
- Two is one. One is none. Make backups, if you love music and podcasting and cannot live without them, take two pairs of head phones instead of one. If you lose one pair on the airplane, you still got a backup.