Going back to normal

Going back to normal

In the aftermath of spending six weeks in the wild, things are starting to return to normal. I am slowly getting back to my routines, the ones that make me feel more like myself. I even started meditating today again!

The phrase "going back to normal" is quite peculiar because what exactly is "normal" anyway? Is it what the majority of people around you do? Or is it what you do when you're not around those people?

One repetitive thought has been dancing in my mind since I landed back in Spain a few days ago. It's not something I didn't know before, it's just that now it's so clear that it's almost painful.

The environment you surround yourself with—the people, the landscape, the conversations you have, the places where you live—shapes how you behave, how you think, how you feel, and even how you look. Wanting to be different in a "normal" environment will probably soon kill that desire. It's really hard to walk in a different direction when everyone else is going the opposite way. It's hard to hear your own voice when everyone around you is talking at the same time. It's almost impossible to be inspired to go the extra mile, to step out of the path, if everyone around you is trying to keep you safe because they love you and want what's best for you. What they think is best for you, that is.

In this scenario, you need to make an extra effort to keep your version of normal safe—the one that makes you smile in the morning when the alarm goes off. Preserving a bit of your individuality will require extra energy, but it's worth it if you don't want to go back to your comfort zone, if you don't want to give up, turn around, and start walking towards everyone else's way.

There's nothing wrong with wanting to conform if that's genuinely what you want to do. However, if you have that nagging feeling telling you that there must be more than this imposed normality, then you must summon that extra effort and, one step at a time, turn around and start fighting the crowds. And if that means moving places again, changing the current environment, so be it.

In the end, it's up to each of us to define our own version of normal and to pursue the paths that resonate with our true selves.

As I settle back into my routines and reflect on my time in the wild, I remind myself of the importance of staying true to oneself, even in the face of social expectations. With this thought in mind, I encourage myself not to let normality engulf me. Instead, I strive to silence all the voices around me to hear my own and take action—whether it's taking small steps to break free from conformity or embarking on a bold new adventure.