I realized from the start that many people dream of taking substantial time off, but few actually can. So I set out to make the best use of that precious time, knowing it might be the first and last chance I'd ever get to have a completely open agenda, with absolutely no engagements whatsoever.
The first thing I did was rest. I had been running on empty for a while and my batteries were dead. Only when I truly let go did I realize the extent of my exhaustion. So I slept. A lot. Went for walks in nature, read magazines, watched movies. Spent a lot of time alone, in silence. Solitude became my best friend.
I searched, deeply, for answers and eventually found them. Surrounded by nature, I let anxieties, fears and old wounds slowly rise up to the surface, where they could finally see the light of day and be released. (This took a while.)
From the time I was ten years old I'd begun yearning for some real time off and when I finally got it, the relief I felt was immense.
I read countless books and wrote countless pages. I thought and thought and thought and thought. I made sense of my world. Of my life. I fixed things that were broken and righted wrongs. I learned to let go. I contemplated. I evolved. Eventually, I grew.
I began to experience the bigger picture. And my role in it. I allowed my energy to slowly re-emerge: stronger, happier, wiser. Then, I fell. Got back up. Fell again. Then got back up again. It dawned on me that children aren't afraid of falling when learning how to walk. They just accept it as part of life. I learned to do the same.
I finally uncovered the meaning of 'going with the flow', an art one perfects over a lifetime. I consistently studied the intricacies of my mind as they related to life. Out of this eventually emerged a true sense of inner peace, well-being and happiness.
It took time, concentration, and a whole lot of solitude, but it was well worth it. One of the greatest victories of my life is to have found my center of happiness, as silly as that may sound. It was by far my greatest challenge, my most complex enigma. And during my time off, I finally found the key.