There’s nothing like getting knocked off your bike to refocus your mind.
When the doctor gave me a two weeks sick note I knew things would change for me. No way could I stay home for that long. It would drive me crazy.
But the fact was undeniable. I would have to take some time off.
I complained (a lot), trying to find optional ways to still be involved at work. I wasn’t able to use my left arm, but I could still use both sides of my brain.
I was desperately running through every option, every solution, to carry on doing my job.
And then somebody told me: ‘Use this time to open your mind, on a creative level. Go to museums, see exhibitions, do stuff that will inspire you, but stop working.”
I asked myself, how often do I stop? How often do I have an opportunity to be inspired differently? People say that opportunity knocks only once, I think that opportunities happen to people who create them. People who are willing to embrace change. I was so focused on staying at home for two weeks that I missed the point.
It left me wondering, is this the most dynamic my life can be?
Waking up — watching tv — sleeping for the next 14 days?
So maybe instead of complaining about how bored I would be staying home, how daunting the situation was, I should embrace this moment in my life where I have the chance do things differently.
‘If you give people the opportunity to experience where their curiosity takes them, great things always happen’. That was the subtext I took from this great advice.
For two weeks, I lived more intensely than I had thought of doing in the past three years of hectic work. I stopped running, stopped dashing, and I started looking.
Looking at things I would have not looked at before. How Monet uses colours when he paints clouds, how opulent yet precise the Opera House architecture is, how swooning Raymond Depardon photographs are.
Let’s be honest though, I didn’t wake up in the middle of the night thinking ‘I am so inspired’. I don’t think we can quantify how ‘better’ we become, but we can definitely know how ‘happier’ we are.
I am glad to have experienced this unfortunate incident, not because it made me a better person, but how it made me a happier one. Although I don’t believe that you should have road accidents to be happier, I think sometimes there’s nothing like getting knocked off your bike to refocus your mind.