First fashion designer Kate Spade. Now celebrity chef, author and television personality, Anthony Bourdain, of the popular travel series Parts Unknown. Two highly successful – even iconic – business people who have left this world far too early and by their own choice.
Kate Spade inspired me with her bright, fun fashion lines and her wild story of business success. And as someone who loves to travel, and experience different cultures/food and write stories about it, I am a huge fan of “Parts Unknown.” So today, Bourdain’s passing hits a bit close to home for me because I know what it is like to travel solo and feel isolated while doing it. I also know what it is like to have a dark cloud that no-one can see, but only you can feel.
Success to the outside world does not always match what one feels inside.
“Whenever we set unrealistic expectations on ourselves or others and our reality does not live up to these unrealistic beliefs, we experience disappointment and feelings of depression,” says the world’s leading expert on human behaviour, author and speaker, Dr. John Demartini.
In other words, when we are trying to live out a fantasy, or someone else’s life, we are not truly living according to what is really important to us.
Travel changes you. As you move through this life and this world you change things slightly, you leave marks behind, however small. And in return, life—and travel—leaves marks on you. ~ Anthony Bourdain
For years, I have asked hundreds of women about their secrets to success and their hearts’ desires. Almost every day, I study celebrities, thought-leaders, world leaders and experts about what makes them tick and succeed. As an introvert, I informally observe and study human behaviour, and I have written a book that explores the impact of self-love on creativity.
What I know, not only from my research, but also from my own life experience, is that when we do not listen to our hearts, we can become depressed. The heart whispers wisdom. It knows our innermost desires. Feelings of fear, guilt, regret – and self-doubt – block the whispering. When we get past these obstacles, we can open our hearts. When we open our hearts, we can hear the whispers again. Then we can act on our heart’s desires. And then we act on our heart’s desires it leads to fulfillment, which lasts longer than the fleeting feelings of happiness.
I adore pretty things and witty words. ~ Kate Spade
The key is gratitude. When we are grateful for what we have and don’t have, we can remove the obstacles and move forward. When we find the blessings in a crisis, or the positives in any event that we call bad, we can release the negative energy and feelings, and find a balanced perspective. We can only find the balanced perspective by practicing gratitude. It is the only way forward.
Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain were huge business successes, but whatever it was that they were feeling privately, one thing is certain is that their feelings inside did not match what the outside world saw.
My take-away: All we can do is our best. And open our hearts with gratitude.
*photo courtesy of Anthony Bourdain’s Facebook page