Dream journey 9: Go with your fear (March 2020)

It has been more than half a year since I decided to leave the “comfortable” life in a company that provided me with a stable paycheck every month. Since I decided to go with my fear, many great things happened. I found my old passion, learned a lot and got to know amazing people.

However, I realized that I was getting lazy with my lifestyle, becoming too comfortable and playing the whole game safe.
Therefore, I decided to leave Vienna for a while and set for a lifestyle of a digital nomad. Working and traveling at the same time proved not to be easy.

My name is Jirka and welcome to follow my dream journey, which I embarked on in July 2019. Whether you are my friend, a stranger or someone from my family, I decided to share my newest adventure and path towards my dreams. If you have not read about my first month, I would highly encourage you to look at it first, so you know what I write about:)

March 2020

Lisbon

What happened

This March was probably the weirdest month of my life. Most probably it was also for you. It started in Portugal, where I finished my work and travel experience. Then I planned to go for a few days back to Vienna before I would go to Indonesia.

That was the original plan. However, everything turned out differently. Having seen the emerging risks due to the coronavirus around the world, I decided to cancel my flight, changed my plans and returned after 11 years back to my home country – Czechia.

It was a very quick and spontaneous decision. I observed that it was becoming harder and harder to travel around the world and therefore, I chose Prague as my next place to live. Surprisingly, I was lucky to find a place to live only within two days. I have to admit that I cannot imagine what I would have done if it took me longer. Only 4 days after my arrival Czechia declared an emergency state and closed borders to all neighboring countries. Something, which I could not imagine until that moment.

Sunset in Prague, where I found my new home

It became clear to me that the situation is serious and I was basically imprisoned in my old new country for an unspecified time. Only two days later the social distancing was imposed and I had to learn how to live alone without any social contacts. 

Last month I was asked during an interview for a documentary film what I think about fear. I said that if you are afraid of something you should go with it. Now, I realize that one of my biggest fears was to be alone, to live without seing other people.

Currently, most of the world population has to live like that and I have to say that it has had some positive impact on my life. This is being reported also by other people I know.

My goals and progress

BiggestDreamers

BiggestDreamers

 I was lucky enough to organize our regular BiggestDreamers meeting before a gathering of more people was banned. Nevertheless, we were already afraid to let in travelers who came from countries like Italy or Korea.
Organizing these meetings for so long made it possible to create a small and stable community of people, who come regularly. For the first time, only my friends came and I really enjoyed this round.

As mentioned before, living in a lockdown has some advantages e.g. everyone has suddenly more time. Therefore, I started to organize more podcast interviews, which I hope to bring to you during April.

Now, when we cannot meet, we are forced to think creatively. The result of this creative thinking is going to be the very first online BiggestDreamers meeting, which I am really looking forward to.

Film

I managed to accomplish my goals and actually even exceed my expectations. Having had more time and focus, I made my travel video from Georgia, which you can see here as well and a new train video. So far I have enough footage to edit. Therefore, I do not mind that I cannot shoot now.

My trip to Georgia in February 2020
All of this is history for now, as most of the services have been suspended.


After 3 months, I completed the very first Udemy course on editing in AfterEffects. This taught me a lot and motivated me to take other courses, which would further improve my editing and personal skills.

I am really happy that I decided to move to Prague since this city is the center of the film in central Europe. Only 5 days after my arrival, I was able to organize a small film crew to make a short film. I got even a small role in a student film and went to a casting. Lastly, I joined an agency that provides extras for American productions.

These few days made me realize that Prague might be a good city for me. Compared to Vienna, there is so much more going on. Unfortunately, also this was destroyed by the coronavirus and the whole film industry basically disappeared overnight.

I hope that I will be able to experience the full power of Prague once this dark time is over.

Furthermore, I started to practice with my camera and gimbal which I want to use more often. This quarantine is going to last longer and so I decided to make a one-man movie.

Being locked in your home made it clear to me that I was too social. This distracted me a lot from my goals. Now, I am finally able to have productive days and routines, which bring me further.

My next goal is going to be a course in animation. I left this field 11 years ago and now I feel that it is time to go back to my passion from my childhood.

Earning some income

I keep failing at making some income myself and that is the reason, why I decided to set it as one of my priorities now. I know, this time is probably not the best for searching for a job. However, sometimes it can be an advantage to search in unusual times. With millions of people at home, who are trying to figure out what to do, online courses or teaching seems like an attractive option to me.

I was playing with this idea already for several months and therefore, I finally decided to apply to be an online German teacher. I do not have any teaching certificate yet, which might make my application process a bit harder. However, I know enough people who started without any certificate or prior experience. At the same time, I also think about searching for some jobs, which would be linked to editing, film or post-production.

Finances

It does not make any sense to mention, that it was another difficult month regarding finances. Everything is down: the financial markets, job markets, etc. It will not be better any soon, as we are going into a deep recession.

Photo by Chris Liverani on Unsplash

I’m not going to go too deep into that because I cannot influence what is happening right now. It was sure that something like this would come sooner or later.

Therefore, I would simply focus on my personal finances. As we cannot travel I was able to save money on traveling, even though I made some stupid mistakes like missing my train or buying a monthly pass in Prague, which I used only for 4 days (before we all were told to stay at home). This made it basically my worst investment ever.

Being in a lockdown makes your expenses naturally smaller and therefore, I can report the lowest expenses since I stopped working. These might go down even further next month. On the other hand, I spent way more money on food, as I bought for the first time more food, in order to be safe in case I got sick and could not leave my home at all.

I was not the only one, who tried to buy more food. This was the common picture in our stores.
Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash

These were my expenses:
Food    225 €
Rent     200 €
Transportation 106 €
Others 129 €
__________________
Total   660 €

My biggest success

This time, my biggest success was embracing one of my biggest fears – being alone. I knew that I had this fear and I was trying to overcome it in the past. 6 years ago I decided to travel alone and it was one of the best decisions of my life.
However, this fear was even bigger, because now we all had to stop all our social contact. Moreover, we do not know for how long. This is something, what most of us are doing for the first time.

I am a very sociable person and I thought that I need constant socializing in order to be happy. I was wrong. Social distancing proved to me, that it is beneficial to calm down and reduce social interaction. Meeting friends makes you happy in the short term, however, it often distracts you a lot and keeps you away from important tasks. This is especially crucial if you have to work on your personal projects as I do.

Sure, I still prefer meeting my friends over being alone. But now I know, that being alone is not as terrifying as I thought previously.

Finding new friends, who share the same passion or interest in Prague within just a few days was also one of the greatest things which happened to me.

My failures

I would just repeat myself, as I do every month. Once again I have no income and it is frustrating. However, I know that I will be able to overcome this hurdle.

I also failed to record any new podcasts, despite having many people sitting in their homes, who would have more time for me. I will not give up and continue my efforts.

One of the smaller and funny failures was missing my train to Prague. That happened to me for the very first time in my life.

Happiness – go with your fear

In the beginning, I was a bit down as I was worried about where to go next. Suddenly, I had to change my plans and jump into this new situation. There were definitely difficult days, where my emotions exploded. I remember my shock when I realized that I will not be able to travel to other countries. I remember, how devasted I felt when I realized that I will not be able to see most of my friends and family for an indefinite time.

On the other hand, I know that most of us are still healthy and that we cannot give up. We have to continue living our lives and adapt to this new reality.

It has already been more than two weeks and I can actually report increased levels of happiness. This situation will not last forever. Nevertheless, as long as the whole world is locked down and battling the coronavirus, we have to take the positive aspects of this whole situation.

Wrap up

A lot of things did not go according to my vision this March, but maybe that is good. I truly believe that this does not happen for anything. There is a reason why we all are “trapped” at home. There is a reason why I ended up in Prague and not in Indonesia.

Go with your fear
Go with your fear

Life cannot be planned in advance and this was the perfect lesson for everyone. You cannot be angry or upset. You have to accept your life as it is and deal with the current situation. I am at the beginning of this process and hopefully on the right path.

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