Leaving the Chains of Status Quo to an Unleashed Life of Freedom, Happiness and Adventure

Our standard of living somehow got stuck on survive
That’s when suddenly everything fades or falls away
Cause the chains which once held us are only the chains which we’ve made
We sacrifice our pride, sacrifice our health
We must demand more, not of each other, but more from ourselves

- Lyrics from “Deep Water” by Jewel

After 10 months at my corporate day job this year, with today as my last day …. after 5 years of working in jobs I did not love …. after listening to all those people that thought this life was better for me, that I was too smart and bright to just “up and leave it all behind” …. after pouring some of my most able and capable years of my life into something I did not find deep meaning, happiness and freedom in …. after all this …. I step away …. and let go.

I take the heavy chains off. But not after a long, difficult struggle of finding myself.

That was the key all along. The key to my own personal freedom.

I unlock the deadening grips of society which have held me down, not empowered me like I thought it would.

I unlock the creative and artistic self that I was born to be, made to be, all along.

I’ve left a lot of things behind as I step away from my old life and into the sweet, new life I have in front of me.

What or Whom I’ve Left Behind:

  • Corporations, working for the “man,” paid just a little bit but trading that little bit with my life
  • A life of settling, of “paying my dues to society,” dues that needn’t have to be paid in the first place, when you choose to live an unconventional and bold life
  • A life of mediocrity, of just average run-of-the-mill experiences
  • My fears
  • Friends and negative relationships with those who were actually vampires all along, sucking every last ounce of my energy until I was drained … an empty, hollow shell of my former self
  • People who do not understand, and who choose not to understand, that my life is mine. Not theirs.
  • What I used to call “home.” Home is not necessarily with my family, back in the suburbs. Home is not necessarily in Chicago, where I live, for just a couple of more months before heading overseas. Home is the world now. Home is where my heart is, right now, right here, wherever that may be.
  • Everything I’ve ever owned. No car. No TV. No furniture. Barely any clothes, for that matter. What I have is what I need. What I will ever need.

What or Whom I Can Look Forward To:

The video you’re about to watch is a very abbreviated version of the life I have lived for the past 5 years. I started off as a young, bright-eyed college graduate, obediently doing what I was told, just like how I learned as a child and in school.

I woke up, every day, to a life I did not want to live any more.

I sunk deeply into the crevices of my dark self, trying to find the vibrant Nina that was there, now fearfully hidden, afraid to come out, but all the while because I had adamantly told her to shut up and stay quiet. To not stir up any commotion. To be “good” and to make me “proud.”

No good came out of this. No one was proud. Maybe society was but they do not matter in the end. What mattered was I was not proud of who I was.

So when I found myself this year laying broken, crushed and depleted, curled up in the fetal position, on the cold, hard ground, puddles of hot tears pooling at my feet, my torn heart and soul aching with a pain that was beyond surreal … I knew it was now or never. Now. Or never.

You’re reading this because I chose now. I chose to live my life as my own, utterly sick and tired of being told I was a shame, a disappointment, a waste, a disgrace, a nobody that would fail the moment I stepped outside the “real world.” The majority of the real world is living in an illusion. They have all convinced themselves this life is the one they ought to live, all the while ignoring the pains of their broken heart with shattered dreams, reflecting off a shattered mirror.

I faced all these unforgiving accusations. I faced all my fears. I faced everyone and everything that ever tried to stop me from being the person I was made to be.

And so I timidly, shakingly … got back up. I was trembling. But I got back up.

And I faced life. I faced my life. I did not want everything to fade to black. Not yet. Too soon. And not by my own hand.

This video is an expression of my decision to live my life. My way.

I hope it truly inspires and moves you to live your life with no regrets. To face your fears — and dreams — head on.

And most importantly … to truly believe in yourself that you really deserve better. Your dreams deserve better. Make them a reality today, like I have. You will never regret it.

If you can’t view this video because you’re at work, watch it when you go back home tonight. If you know someone who desperately needs to hear the message that life is not one that needs to be lived on someone else’s terms, please send this post to them. It can dramatically change someone’s life and subsequently, alter their future in ways unimaginable.

For more on the person behind the blog, read my story here.

And finally, if you find the writing here totally invigorating, I invite you to join 20,000+ monthly readers by receiving free updates by or . Send me a note via if you dig the blog (and/or me). :)

I’m free, folks. I’m finally, truly free.

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