Be brave, be happy

“You will end up finding your way, if you first have the courage to lose yourself.” T. Terzani

Yes, I know what you are thinking. That you have already seen this phrase who knows how many times on blogs and memes that run on the internet, and that I could try hard to find something more original. But why try to improve something that is already perfect? Perfect for what I want to write you about in this post, the charm of getting lost. I don’t know if it ever happened to you, perhaps during a trip abroad, to feel at some point that you were completely lost. It is a strong feeling that in many, I believe in most people, ends up causing fear, panic. For me, however, getting lost has an exciting aftertaste. Indeed, to be honest, the journey becomes real just when, by mistake or because we went looking for it, we get lost.
When you get lost, the points of reference fall, there are no patterns or directions to follow. You are alone. But one is also tremendously free, and when there is freedom there is opportunity. It is at that moment that the possibilities arise to trace paths that we would never have trod, to see and visit places that, if we had followed the official tourist tours, we would never have known. When you are traveling and you get lost, you also learn another very important thing which is to rely on others; how to get out of an inextricable maze of dirt roads on the Moroccan coast (just to give you an example I know) if you don’t have the humility and the confidence to ask the Bedouins for help?

Get lost

Get lost from freedom. Getting lost teaches us to rely on others. But losing ourselves helps us to know ourselves. When we are lost we are alone with ourselves, and it is there that we measure our most hidden fears, so to speak, those that we carry with us without knowing it since we are children and that re-emerge in these extreme situations; and it is when we get lost that we also measure our ability to react to these fears, and in general, to the obstacles that the situation is placing before us.
Here then is that the journey, and its situations (in this case getting lost), once again reveals itself as a school of life and, what happens in the journey, is nothing but an allegory of what happens in life. everyday, the one done in the city we know, in offices we know, in human relationships we know.
Even in everyone’s life you can get lost. Not geographically, but on a personal level. We can feel lost because maybe at some point those close to us go away and we begin to feel alone, disoriented. Or we can voluntarily get lost when we abandon the already traced paths of life; those of the “socially accepted”, of the politically correct, of the ethical, of the respectable. You can get lost in them too. But whether we got lost because we were abandoned or by choice, the common key that pulls us out of these situations is courage.

From Manzoni to Tucidide

It takes courage to choose to get lost (active case) and courage is needed to get out of lost situations (passive case). Yes, the courage. The most undemocratic of personal qualities. Who has a lot of it and who, like Don Abbondio del Manzoni, does not have it and cannot give it to himself. But you can cultivate it, just like you can grow the flowers from your terrace and the fruits from your garden. Everyone can begin to cultivate their courage by gradually making more and more conscious choices in their lives, and more and more relevant to their will and not to what society asks of them. It is when the individual emerges on society that his courage is manifested. And do you know what a side effect of courage is? Happiness. In the very moment in which one learns to live one’s life with courage, accepting the risk of making mistakes and of “getting lost”, and not caring about external judgment, in that moment, happiness begins to surface through big and small things in our existence, like coals still burning that re-emerge under the ashes and show a heat that we did not expect. Extraordinary isn’t it? Well, you know, to be honest, I’m not making up anything new. In fact, already two thousand years ago, Thucydides taught us that “The secret of happiness is freedom, and the secret of freedom is courage”.