On top of the world and around the country - project me day 516

31 May 2011

There's only one way to get your big girl (or boy) panties (or boxers) on and get out into the big wide world of things that fear you ... Nike has it so right and I wish I could tattoo "Just do it" on most people's foreheads. Of course I would need to start with mine.

We all have fears and we look at each other as though our fears are much scarier. I can think of a good number of people who I look at very strangely when they say something scares them. To me, it's easy! Shove me on stage, totally unprepared, and I will be fine. Give me a topic I'm comfortable with at least. Don't ask me geography questions in public unless you are planning on making a complete ass of me. Funny that, considering what I'm about to announce.

I'm determined not to start the 'book' with the opening line: "It began over a pizza and coffee", so count it as officially being used. Truth is, it did begin that way and with a whole lot of?frustration?as I watched a friend put an awesome idea on a shelf because of a whole lot of fears. ?Mostly, his fears didn't scare me, so it was easy to give him a handful of reasons to 'just do it'. By the end of the evening we had a brilliant idea and both of us were making a whole lot of dreams a reality.

Pat Sloane has never seen the best parts of South Africa and for some reason I have had my dad on my mind in the most tear jerking way. Pat is a brilliant photographer and I'm a passionate writer. Pat wants to create a coffee table book of the positive side of our beautiful country and I want to give people a true understanding of happiness.
Greg and myself has dreamed of changing the perception of charity and so Lifeology Rich (readying individuals to create happiness) was born. There is so much to tell you about that aspect of our vision, but for the most part, we want to give back in the only way we know how ... by empowering individuals to discover their richness within.

While I was standing on top of the 22nd floor of the most gorgeous building in the centre of Braamfontein on a frosty winter's night in South Africa, I had two thoughts.
1 ... holy crap, I climbed into an elevator and went up 22 flights without thinking I was going to do. Yes, I'm that afraid of them. I have even walked up 17 flights to my hotel room (up and down) for an entire weekend. I have made my sister walk up over 150 steps in London to avoid the subway elevator ... I am that afraid! Well ... I was that afraid! Staring at the beautiful view at Randlords and watching the lights twinkle and Jozi?glisten, I realised that I had no need for an old pattern anymore.

I used to be afraid of getting lost or stuck in lifts and public toilets in case no one noticed I was missing. It was my fear that I would be stuck there or lost for hours or days. I can't be claustrophobic because I'm happy to climb in a plane or pile into a noisy club and small space ... but lose me in a crowd and my world falls apart. I'm not that girl anymore ... the one who thinks I'm not noticed or that I'm so insignificant that I will be gone for hours and no one will even notice I'm missing. It's been that recent that yesterday was the first elevator trip that didn't scare the panties off of me. Okay, I cling to my cellphone a little, but that's better than walking 22 flights of stairs.

So, on top of the world, really was that spectacular.

The other incredible moment was realising that I'm about to make one of my dad's dreams a reality. No wonder I have been so emotional about him of late. With Pat's fears putting on the breaks and me battling to watch people not overcome their fears, I took the plunge and told him that we would collaborate on our dreams coming true. My dad wanted to see South Africa in one long trip (but being on the road with an oxygen tank to survive is not the wisest idea) and Pat wants to take pics of the happiest moments he can capture in this magnificent country. I, on the other hand, want to do an incredible trip in memory of my dad, blog about it and share the concept that happiness truly is that individual. If you ask 100 people what happiness means to them, I know you will get 100 different answers ... and so, Project Happiness is born!

The how's are always the fun part and there's a lot to plan without getting too bogged down in the detail. So it's a month on the road, driving through SA and taking pictures of what happiness means to the people we meet and see around us. Then a coffee table book will be born with the combination of my telling the story of our trip and quoting South Africans from every corner of this incredible place and asking only one question ... "What does happiness mean to you?"

Well ...

4 comments on “On top of the world and around the country - project me day 516”

  1. Holy Crap!! 22 storeys up?! I can't do it, I'm terrified of getting into an elevator to go up one or two floors. Not so much the getting trapped but just the overall uneasy feeling of being in that box. Then again it could also have something to do with the "up" bit that I simply don't cope with.

    Should make for a great book methinks. I've lived over most of South Africa and once you get off of the beaten track there are some truly amazing spots. 🙂

    Only real question I suppose will be, "When are you going to be near my parts?"
    My recent post Happy in the Meantime

    1. My dad would have freaked out at the thought of being so many floors off the ground! Lol ...
      I had a moment or two myself so it really was that big a night for the 'up' experience!

      I'm thrilled about the trip and there is no way I'm missing out on spending some time with you! We might need a place to crash (by the way) ... hehehehe! I hope lots of blogging and Tweeting friends are very generous ;p

  2. You gooooo girl! I am working on the fears that are holding me back from my destined life, as well. Elevators (lifts) are a big one for me but the more troublesome ones are those that keeping from asserting myself in my own life. Those are deep waters but slowly but surely I am diving down.

    Can't wait to see your travels around your land. I can vicariously live through them. I will make it there one day -- I will!!!


    P.S. I tried really hard to not make you cry this time -- LOL!
    My recent post Wordless Wednesday 11 — A Close Shave

    1. I know this never comes out quite right when I say that I'm glad you also have similar fears. It's horrid to have them but it's something else to not feel alone in the world. I can't wait for the trip either and I am making damn sure that I show the beauty of this country the best way I know how! I'm still heading over to your end of the world ... I promise!
      No tears, but a special smile for all the loving I have found in your friendship!

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