“Change one thing, Change everything.” – The Butterfly Effect
Rising early Thursday morning in my flat in Mexico, I was excited about the day ahead. One of my fellow travelers in our mastermind group titled “Lionesses” (A group founded following the DenEx trip with Location Indie) booked a handful of us a driver to transport us three hours south to a monarch butterfly sanctuary named Santuario de la Mariposa Monarca “El Rosario.”
To read part 4 of my trip to Mexico, click here.
With coffee and muffin in hand, I boarded the van eager for the day. As we watched movies and chatted, I realized I was feeling quite anxious. I kept thinking that I should feel calm and relaxed, I’m on vacation, miles away from my stressful sales job. With no cubical insight, I should be energized and enthusiastic, yet I felt something wasn’t right. What I later realized was the truth is that I was afraid of so much uncertainty in my life, with all of my fellow LIons defining their next steps, I still wasn’t sure of mine.
What I now know, is that this one day, with this one trip, three months later, I had clarity.
Angangueo, perched at an elevation of 8,400, was where I found my calm. Walking in silence and only hearing the flapping of butterfly wings is an amazing sound. Visually, seeing thousands of butterflies overhead, I felt so inspired about just being present in the moment. How that awareness created a memory for me that I’ll never forget.
In chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence on initial conditions in which a small change in one state of a deterministic nonlinear system can result in large differences in a later state.
I truly believe that traveling to Mexico and visiting this butterfly sanctuary durring the migration, helped me get clear on my path. One photograph I created sparked an idea for a motto that I am using in my new travel writing business focused on calming destinations. Months after taking this trip, and after hours of research about travel writing I was frustrated and beyond distressed to think about how many people want to do travel writing as a career. I had a mindset that I wasn’t going to be able to do it, that I wasn’t good enough, what was going to make me different than everyone else? I needed to find a niche that made my travel writing unique.
“Small shifts in your thinking, and small changes in your energy, can lead to massive alterations of your end result.” ―
Then I was realizing that I enjoy going to places that are peaceful and calm. The last thing I want to do is be in a loud place after working on a sales floor with reps screaming into the phone 8 hours a day, five days a week. My “happy place” is the forest, near a lake, or by a stream. Searching out waterfalls, finding butterflies, and discovering exquisite views, that’s where I enjoy being when I’m traveling. As I thought more about this, I realized that so much talk in the world today is about “mindfulness” and a “buzzword” in society really is peace or calm. I also realized I had exhibited my photographs for the past two years of my favorite calming destinations. People asked me about my “Chaos and Calm” exhibit, and I had tons of positive feedback about it.
As someone who started a daily practice of yoga and meditation, a calming practice is a top priority for me as I improve my stress response, and pick up mindful habits. So it’s with this experience, and eagerness to learn, that I decided to present myself as someone who researches and provides insight on destinations with that focus in mind. As I grow my business and start pitching these kinds of stories, I hope to grow my client base and work with publishers who want to share this information. As I was flipping through my photos late one night, I found this photo from the monarch butterfly sanctuary and realized it would make the perfect background for my mission to find calming destinations for mindful travel. The idea was born thanks to this trip, and it helped guide me to calm clarity about my mission. The butterfly effect is real.