‘I would have written you, myself, if I could put down in words everything I want to say to you. A sea of ink would not be enough.’ ‘But you built me dreams instead.’
I’m a person of few words. Or rather, I don’t use words in excess. I like to listen. And ask the right questions at the right time. I believe in the power of picking your words wisely. Sometimes it’s just a short thought or a quick remark that makes people change their minds. That makes them realise a thing or two about their dreams. That helps them to find a solution to their problem. I’ve never really understood the mission of a motivational speaker. For me it feels confining to be overwhelmed with all these words and thoughts and ideas. Other people’s words and thoughts and ideas. And at the end of the day there is nothing left other than a lot of noise and not much vision. But where are my own thoughts and my own ideas then?
There is a fine line between inspiring people build their dream and imposing your own opinions and feelings on them. At first you might not even notice a difference. You certainly can feel inspired and motivated after a good pep talk. But it won’t turn your inner world upside down. It won’t make you question everything you do. It will not ask you about your dreams and vision and your life goals. And it won’t send you on an exciting journey to find those.
When I attended the 4-day workshop in Gotland, I thought I would ‘just’ have a nice time photographing, eating and meeting friends. Of course, I had more than just a nice time. But honestly it took me a while to realise the invaluable experience these few days had given me. And even though my heart was jumping of joy and dancing of deep satisfaction every night I went to sleep in my little cottage bed, the memories and everything that comes with it go beyond the walls of our white farm house.
The valuable lessons I learned,the new friends I made, the dinner talks we had, the projects we were tasked to do, the challenges we faced, the different view points and perspectives I heard, the new environment we were put into with our cameras, the inspiration I took home with me. All this will stay with me for a long time. And it is that part of the workshop that I loved the most. Processing all these new ideas and inputs and inspirations. Going on a journey and all you know is that whatever you did so far, whatever you’ve been satisfied with in the past, will be turned upside down. As my friend Sara of Shiso Delicious, who also participated in the workshop, said: “I’ve come to realise that these moments of ‘disturbance’ are there to push us: to try new things, to evolve, to sharpen how we define ourselves.”
Food Styling & Photography Retreat in Gotland, Sweden