Right now, my life is good. I live in Switzerland with my fiancé and three-year-old daughter. And I
make a living doing the thing I love the most, fitness. But you may be surprised to know that life
wasn’t always good for me. There was a time when the very things I love so much about my life now
were the things that caused me the most stress in my life. Here’s my story.
The Phone Call That Changed Everything
In 2018 my life changed forever. Before then, I was a really normal guy. I worked a 9-5 in a
demanding field and worked my side hustle, Gym Performance, in my spare time. I also really loved
to travel the world. That is how I met my now fiancé, Gabriella. She is from Brazil, and I am from
Switzerland and we met while we were both travelling in Australia. When we met, we knew that we
would both be going back to our home countries, and we didn’t want to go long-distance, so it was a
Then, in the Winter of 2017, wanting to escape the cold weather in Switzerland, I decided to take a
vacation to somewhere warm. I hadn’t been to Brazil before, so I decided to go and contacted
Gabriella to see if she wanted to spend the vacation with me. To my surprise, she said yes. It was a
fantastic vacation and a much-needed escape to warmer climates.
Fast forward to 2018, and I’m back to my daily grind, working my 9-5 and coaching fitness clients in
my free time. One evening I got a phone call from Gabriella that changed my life forever. She was
pregnant, and it was mine.
On the phone call, I was very calm and reassured her that everything would be alright. But when I
hung up the phone, I was anxious and just plain scared. I could see everything I had planned for my
life crumbling around me. I knew I wanted to be close to my daughter, but did that mean I would
have to move to Brazil? Would Gabriella have to move here? I was in complete shock and had more
questions than answers.
Taking Responsibility For My Actions
I have always been passionate about self-improvement and would read books from psychologists
and well-known business people. I also listened to podcasts every day. One book in particular that
stood out to me at this time was Unleash the Warrior Within by Richard Machowicz. In it, the author
says to do one exercise every single day. It was a simple exercise; just read 5 sentences to yourself in
the mirror. One of those sentences was, “I am responsible for my life and actions.”
That sentence really stood out to me during this time. Planned or not, my daughter was a result of
the actions of Gabriella and I. I needed to take responsibility and ownership of my actions. As scared
as I was to be a father, I knew that I wanted to be close to my daughter, so after a lot of deliberation,
I decided to move to Brazil.
Moving to a warm country may sound like a dream to many people. I had always wanted to live
abroad and under different circumstances, I may have been really excited about the move. But at the
time there was a lot of change going on:
- I was moving to a place where I didn’t speak the language or know the culture
- The only person I knew was Gabriella
- I was about to be responsible for a child
- I was going to live with someone I didn’t know on a day-to-day basis
- I had to find a way to support Gabriella and our baby
- I was leaving behind all my friends and family
In a short space of time, my life had changed so much, and it was a struggle to adjust. But two and a
half years later, Gabriella, our daughter, and I were back in Switzerland and my side hustle, Gym
Performance, was now a successful business with 80 clients.
How Did Taking Responsibility Help Me?
Everything I did during that time to create the life I have now boils down to taking responsibility for
my life and actions. In difficult times it is so easy to believe that you have no control over your life.
But that is just not the case. Yes, sometimes unexpected things happen that change your life in
big ways. I have first-hand experience of that. But that doesn’t mean that I don’t have any control
over my life.
Taking responsibility for your life and actions means focusing on the things you can control. Doing
so allows you to make the most out of every situation. There were 3 things I focused on that allowed
me to thrive in a difficult time.
1. Self-improvement – It is easy to work on yourself when life is going well, but it is difficult to work on yourself when your world feels upside down. Wallowing and cursing my life would have been much easier. But I chose to face my problems and try and find a way forward. I read self-improvement books and surrounded myself with people who I looked up to and who encouraged me.
2. Fitness – At times, fitness felt like the only thing I could control, the one constant in my life. It gave me a way to healthily vent my frustrations while adjusting to my new life and later became a source of income.
3. Help – One of the hardest things that I did during this time was ask for help. It is not weak or “unmanly” to ask for help; it is simply admitting that you don’t hold all the answers and you value the expertise of those around you. Seeking help allowed me to adjust much faster to life as a new parent; it helped me to grow my business. I overcame problems faster and with fewer mistakes than I would have if I had just battled on alone.
Take Responsibility and Overcome Challenges
I think this mindset of taking responsibility for my actions and my life was crucial to my success in a
challenging time. It will serve you much better than any clear blueprint or map to success ever could.
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