A Journey on Experiencing a Meaningful Life

October 2, 2017


This is an article written by our Fellow Gaby Cavellos. Please read the full article on Medium.

Debriefings that Matter

I was 18 years old when I first heard about the proverb Ignorance is Bliss. It happened during an intercultural summer camp in Holland where I was sharing views and perspectives with kids from 12 different countries. In the middle of an activity and a deep discussion, it was mentioned that a lack of knowledge can result in happiness. At that moment, I didn’t say much: I reflected about it and silently agreed with this statement. I believed that there were some situations where it was best not to find out about certain things that may trouble or worry me. However, I never really thought about the difference between being ignorant and the choice people make to ignore something.

I’ve seen many people around me choosing to ignore different realities from theirs and living as if their lives were the only ones that matter, disregarding the rest of situations that confront their personal facts. Ever since that summer, from time to time the proverb pops back into my head so that I give it a second, third or fourth thought (as I did a few months ago).

Our Innerverse and the Universe

I was sitting in a room full of wonderful people in Sao Paulo, Brazil. It was mid November and I was in our perfect Amani house listening to the barulhoinside the room. After -almost- 4 months of learning new personal practices, I’d learned to quiet my monkey mind and be present or, at least, try to be. While my brain was processing the information from the outside, a thought came to me:

our innerverse defines the Universe.

Our innerverse defines the Universe. Our own perspective can change what we think about others, our society and the world.

Now, aged 23, I can build on previous reflections I had and conclude that sometimes my ignorant self can be “happy” when I disregard some aspects from the outside world, but not from my inner world. Being conscious of what happens in our innerverse will have a big impact on how we take the things that happen in the Universe. This is key because, in my opinion, our inner light can contribute in a positive way to everything that surrounds us. We just have to make sure we have looked for this light and share it with the rest.

When it comes to self-knowledge, there’s no room for ignorance. It’s not about choosing to ignore something because now, accountability takes its place inside each one of us. Self-knowledge is what drives personal growth as awareness is a factor that leads to development and action.

Knowing Your A, B, Cs

Once you start to get to know yourself, you can’t really stop. Try it. You’ll uncover wonderful talents, and secrets too. For me, this journey started when I was a teenager and continued in Amani. As Gigi from the Amani team told us, find what scares you and give it a name. Name your fear to tame it. And it echoes…name it to tame it. The real struggle comes when you’ve battled and confronted your previous dragons and now start to look for the other ones that are hiding inside you, the ones you don’t recognize yet. Awareness is a powerful tool that will change your innerverse as the days go by.

I find it funny that people always want to know where we are heading. They tell us that it doesn’t matter where we come from, or our past, it’s all about the future. But is it really?

What happens to our intention? The one that unleashes a desire to act. What happens to the emotions that explain where we are coming from? Understanding our intentions can change the end goal of something. We can head to the right direction once we recognize what’s behind our actions. Does our intention come from a place of fear and pain? Or a place of joy, love and willingness to being better?

Would the world be different if everyone knew themselves more and believed in personal development?

I believe so.

So, know your A, B, Cs! Take time to explore why you are doing something and question your actions. Become friends with your fears and make them your allies. When you change your attitude and head to a more positive one, you create opportunities and multiply possibilities. This mind set will shape and help you reframe situations in your life so that you keep going forward. All in all, remember that what you believe is reflected on what you think about the world and the rest of us.

Designing the Life(s) to Live.

Once you bring a telescope and start looking for stars inside your own innerverse, you’ll discover and encounter different desires, dreams and paths to take. The truth is, when you know who you want to be and which type of person you want to grow into there are many ways to follow.

We have a lot of lives inside us, and a lot of selves too. And this is AWESOME! There’s so much to explore and to experience that we might not know where to start.

Why not jumping into action?

This thought led me to start designing the life I want to live to become the person I want to be.

Try a different activity you enjoy, treat yourself right and invite yourself to solo dates. Challenge people and talk about what makes them human. On this wayfinding, you’ll experience, meet, and start conversations that will shape your path towards a more joyful life.

The Start of a Positive Impact Igniter

When you are no longer in this world, how would you like to be remembered?

I want to be a light in people’s lives. I want to help others see and reach their full potential in order to thrive. I want to be a Positive Impact Igniter.

I’ve chosen not to ignore my inner selves and my dreams because ignoring them just numbed the magic inside me. I’ve chosen to make a change and just… start.

Back in Amani, we created an online social initiative so people know better about their motivations, their strengths and values. With Ina and Amalia, we were innovating the field of personal development to make it more fun and accessible for people! And this prototype helped me further develop and create my Impact Project.

This is how The Life Experiment was born. A project to challenge millennials to thrive through personalized workshops and coaching sessions aiming to help them achieve a better balance in their life to build their way forward. The Life Experiment encourages people to responsibly shape their reality to live a joyful and well-designed life. This adventure began long before and got accelerated in Amani.

So this entrepreneurial life started and I had to design the workshops, the material and the activities. I learned that things don’t happen as planned and I better strengthen my resilience to keep on going.

Creating a support network, taking care of my mind, body and spirit and dedicating quality time to my loved ones have also being part of the life designer’s life.

And I’ve seen and lived how this tools can work by building a new future towards my dreams and my aim to develop people and myself.

Building my way Forward

I couldn’t ignore where I was, what was going in my life.

Being self-ignorant is not bliss.

In this journey I’ve learned that life is about decisions and choices, and these shape what I construct or destruct. It’s up to me.

I discovered the creative part of me and trust in my dreamer self. Because I AM truly a Dream Doer and I am certain that I am on the right direction.

I learned how to ask for help and build relationships with special people around me. Life is about co-creation, so I have a support network around me that share my values to transform the world we live in.

Amani opened my eyes to a new reality and allowed me to stop looking at the outside world to satisfy something that was lacking on my inside.

The only way to be the light in others is to see and admire the light I have inside me.

The Journey has just started.


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