Get to know me
Before I started minimal•u I..
• finished my Bachelor in Education in 2012
• have worked for 7 years as an HR specialist and got my Bachelor in HR
• have made personal development my nr. 1 investment
• became a minimalist
• had a distance relationship for 9 months with my -now- husband
Typing a personal story. Showing people parts of my life. ''What's my added value?'' Is the first question that comes to mind. Knowing that everyone is unique and has his or her own story that can certainly impress others. There are things I would love to share. Simply because they have made my life much better. I wish the same for you. Hence this blog about my personal story.
It all started during my trip to Suriname. I then studied at the PABO/Bachelor in Education (primary school teacher) and went with my fellow students to South America for 3 weeks to make a trip there and teach at different schools. It is therefore one of the most beautiful trips I have ever made. The people either live in Paramaribo or in the jungle. There is no other option. The interior has affected me enormously. I have met people who have not even been to Paramaribo, do not know TV, do not know what is going on in the world. They live in wooden huts, provide their own food and wash their clothes in the river. The men go into the forest during the day to make boats out of trees. There is nature, food, music, fun and the people all have a huge smile on their faces. I feel their genuine happiness and satisfaction.
For a while I was worrying about going back to the Netherlands. To life with a clock, money, appointments, expectations, stress, hard work and the addiction to the smartphone. I just couldn't understand why we live like that. It made me sad. Knowing that people with less are so much happier and that we are stressing so much. I decided not to watch or read any more news. This allowed me to avoid being dragged into the negativity in the world every day. I knew better; the world is a beautiful place.
As crazy as it sounds. My life soon went on again. I got back into the Western spiral of routines and hard work. After the PABO I started working in an American company in the medical world. I never started working on a primary school because I had gotten a nice job in HR. In no time I worked more than 40 hours, had my own apartment with a beautiful view and got used to the nice salary. Did it really make me happy? More often in the morning I didn't feel like starting work, but my colleagues always made it a party. Until the moment I had to take a personality test. Since I didn't have a permanent contract, but they wanted to give me this, I had to take a test. Everyone in the company gets this, because then the company knows that you fit their mission and values. Guess what? I failed the test! After working there for 5 years, the test said I didn't fit the company. That was a bit of a swallow, but strangely enough I was relieved the next day. If I don't fit in with the company, the company doesn't suit me, does it? Wouldn't this cause friction in the future? This gave me a sense of relief and I decided to quit a few months later.
I ended up with a video on YouTube about our lives, depicted in a timeline. Basically, our life is fun during our childhood and during retirement. Everything in between is seen as "working time". This is from the age of 18 to 68. A very long time! The boy in the video indicated that it is so important to do something that you enjoy. That stayed with me and I started looking for what I really like in life. The problem has always been that I seem to like everything. That has advantages, but it is confusing for me. I have no focus and I can be found everywhere and nowhere.
“Most stress and uncertainty stems from a lack of direction. Choose ”- Growthinkers.
Deep down I knew that I wanted to start for myself. Starting a company where I could help others and where I could improve the world. Traveling is my greatest passion, I love cultures and I believe that we stress too much in the western world. Suriname came up there again and I decided to make a blog. Since I knew that one day I would like to live abroad and travel the world, I decided to make the blog in English. I started looking for words related to positivity and ended up with Giddy Laughter. On my blog I wanted to write about other cultures. How do they ensure their happiness? What habits and routines do they have? How is it possible that people from other countries are sick less often than we are? I made a website and started my blog with full courage. After a while I noticed that my spirits fell because the stories did not spread. People around me find reading boring, especially if it has to be in English. I decided to quit and pick it up again at a later date.
In between, the documentary Minimalism was released on Netflix. I watched this one right away because it really interested me. While watching the documentary I realised that I was already living quite minimalistic; I am an expert at giving away things that do not add value, I do not just buy things like crazy that end up in a corner, I appreciate empty spaces, I like Quality time with loved ones and I know that making good money does not contribute to happiness. I have to do something with this! I felt it throughout my body. People can learn so much from this and above all benefit from it. I want to help them with that.
A few months later I was sitting in a cafe with a friend and she asked me for advice. She said that she was always so happy to talk to me and that I gave good advice that she could really use. I told her about minimalism and the idea that I wanted to do something with it. She immediately confirmed to me that it suited me very well. A month later I came up with the name MINIMAL • U and I quit my job at the time. I finally started my business in April and it is ''a dream come true'' story ever since.
I've followed my heart.