MY LIFE IN CALIFORNIA AND IS IT GOOD TO BE MODEST?
Have you ever had a significant change in your life? I had it twice or maybe three time. And it was always related to changing the location where I lived. The first time I moved from my home city to the capital of Bulgaria – Sofia. Then to Czech Republic, and after Prague now I live in San Francisco for almost two months.
And if my first relocations were within Europe, that last one was across the ocean and to a other continent and is really different and challenging. But don’t get me wrong – I love challenges and changes. I just wanted to step out of my comfort zone and to share a bit more personal details about the transformation that I’m going through. Because the change is not just to change the place, the home but also I have to change same personal things about me.
First I wanted to talk about the food, because this is what every human needs – but I will do it another time. The other completely different thing here is the self-confidence. I grew up in East Europe, in a society where you are taught to be modest – we used to hear that from everybody starting from your first grade teacher, your parents, grandparents… everyone. I even remember that we have a saying that roughly translates like “The modesty makes the person beautiful”. Yet here I am in the USA where there is nothing like that. The people are self-confident and proud with every little success that they achieve. WOW! I can’t and don’t want to judge which behavior is better. I feel that being modest very often leads to underestimating your own skills and achievements but on the other side if you are to much self-confident you can get rid of some of your weaknesses and disadvantages. I guess that there should be something like a golden middle zone that now I have to discover for myself. Any tips about that?
And because this post became very I guess I have to stop. But I am still wondering if it is interesting for you to share more personal details here? I don’t do this very often, because it is something that is still difficult for me, but anyway… maybe it could be helpful for some of you out there that are going through the same transformation.
Please feel free to share personal issues; I can relate to someone who shares more than just the fluff of life. Having said that, I do love your blog and read it (almost) daily.
Also, I am Canadian and I think we are somewhere in between Eastern Europe and USA.
My favorite post of yours. I have not been following your blog for very long because I just found you last Autumn. I hope you will remain modest because it is beautiful. Do not become like us :) You are even modest in describing how different 'we' are here because I call it pride and arrogance. I think we are in need of the modesty you grew up with. AND you have captured the very essence of the shores of San Francisco. I have lived in the Bay Area all of my life and your photos are as if I am right there in the seashore. You have captured it perfectly. I hope you are enjoying living here.
Hey Eva, how are you? Sounds like Canada is exactly that happy place, the golden middle that I mentioned above. Interesting… the reason that I don't want to share too much personal details is because I don't know where to set the limit… you know… people have enough problems and to listen about mine maybe would be too much. But once in a while I think it won’t heart anybody if we step aside from the usual routine. Thank you for being here with me.
I enjoy your honesty and vulnerability (a modest attempt at it :o) I think as long as you feel genuine about sharing your personal thoughts, you will be received with the same, genuine, interest and appreciation from your readers.
I also grew up in Europe but came to the US as a child, losing perspective of those 'tougher' values. I wish now that I hadn't and that I spent more time in my country to develop my own perspectives. I have to share with you that each time I return home, I'm seen as 'that American' which is quite the opposite of how I feel. I have a hard time relating to my people and envy them but no one knows that about me. I don't know how to share it because in Poland, modesty and humility are also strongly upheld values.
You are not alone in your experience and I hope you continue to share your thoughts about your new home.
Ja ti fandim….
jej, dekuju :)
Been there ;) I come from Poland, was living for few years in England and now I live in Czech Republic, where it feels like home, as we seem to have similar attitude towards life and things. I have always been modest and humble person, and it was a clash when I moved to UK :D. I had that feeling that people were making so much hmm… fuss about just a simple thing, which I would never thing this or that was something to show off with – if you understand me. It was really like a wow for me, not always in a positive way, because I grew up where I grew up :). But I can understand it in a country where good job is a luxury and there are thousands competitors wanting to live there and have work as well :). Somehow you need to stand out from the crowd. I think people which are born in such countries don't even realise.
But this may be a good thing :). People can learn to appreciate themselves more :). And talk about how god they are, talk laud ;).
And as per a big change in my life – that was moving, to England in my case. I wanted to change the profession, working hard in two jobs there to pay my courses, and yay – I managed :). And I am very grateful for this step and this opportunity, although it was not easy :).
I keep my fingers crossed for you, you are very talented and nice person, and you can be proud of yourself wherever you are :)
Thanks for the photos =) Good luck in California! Very interesting post that made me think ) Cheers from Moscow
Talking about modesty – I'm originally from Finland, where all you are taught is being modest! Like you mentioned it would so good to find some kind of golden middle zone. It's not easy to transform yourself in this kind of matter, I know, mine is still in process and will probably be for the rest of my life.
Although I love your blog without the personal info, it's always nice to learn a bit more abut the persons behind our favorite blogs. Pretty cool images!
Спасибо Тилда :),
I hope that one day I will visit your beautiful city. :)
thank you katerina. really appreciate it.
you actually mentioned something really important too – that this transformation will continue probably till the rest of our lives. How is the situation with modesty and the self-confidence in Hungary?
Well I was wondering, why is the light in your pictures different, and there you go, it isn't Europe any more ;)
I wish you all the best!
Wow, what luck! San Francisco have to be so beautiful! Anytime I would be travel to San Francisco! Have a nice time there!
I love your blog. I'm from Poland and I have the same problem with my modesty and self-confidence.
I think it is related to our culture .. we lack the "freedom of mind" that Americans have..
I noticed the same thing coming from Australia to visit New York last year. Aussies have a thing called "tall poppy syndrome" where over-achieving isn't necessarily always celebrated…they love to support the "underdog" instead which is coming from a position of possible failure to then achieve. It's interesting. Anyway love the dreamy haze of beach light in your photography :) As for being more vulnerable and sharing personal things…it's harder to do but offers a greate connection :) I find it hard to do on my blog also. You might like Brene Brown's TED talk about the power of vulnerability if you haven't already seen it https://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability
I'm from England and I've been enjoying your blog for more than a year now. Photography is my passion and I do so love your pictures & your style!
I run an English language school in London and in my work I meet so many people who have relocated, maybe for just a short time, maybe for longer, and they all seem to have different ways of adapting to their new 'home' and surroundings. I think the most important thing is to be open to the new culture and to be yourself, taking all the opportunities that come to you to meet people, visit places and learn more about life there. You're a photographer, you have great observational skills! Soon you will come to find your golden middle zone : )
I'd love to see more personal posts like this from you ~ as others have said, it's nice to get to know more about the people behind our favourite blogs.
sorry for my English, but I get emotional sometimes I just forget about the grammar. :)
You know what, I think the feeling that you feel is familiar to me. Living so far away from your home country and cultural differences in the United States, they make you feel like you do not belong to any group, and we humans are social beings and always want to belong somewhere. My formula in your case is to accept that you are just different. Because of the circumstances in your life, good or bad, they make you different person with different experience.
Thank you Lucy. :)
Hi Radostina, I hope the transition becomes smoother for you! :) Unfortunately, I have no tips to offer. I can't imagine what it's like to make such a big move and the culture shock that comes along with it. But, I think finding the golden balance in anything is hard (eating habits/exercise, work/family life, etc.)
I'm going through somewhat of a different transformation right now (figuring out what I want in life) but as a Blogger and a Blog Reader, I appreciate and love personal blog posts. It's always a welcomed thing to know more about your favorite Bloggers and what real life is like for them behind the gorgeous photos. I look forward to reading more and thank you for being so open and honest with your Readers!
By the way, Welcome to the USA! :)
Oh, how I can relate! I moved to Montreal as a teenager, and I have the same sort of upbringing. I was born and raised in Romania, where modesty is valued, and "tooting your own horn" is not something you do….It's been a perpetual adjustment for me. And these days I am faced with a new dilemma….what kind of values do I install in my children? Oh the worries of uprooted people, right!?
Keep posting more personal stuff, it's a nice addition to your already fabulous blog!
hey Christina, thanks for having me :)
I hope you will find your golden balance in your transformation too. I would like to thank you for sharing your opinion with me – it is really important and I appreciate it.
hugs from SF,
Same here! Born to parents from 2 different countries, so this desire of knowing something else is right there from an early beginning! I think it is SO important to explore, to discover, other things than what we know, and we will appreciate later things in a different way! I am travelling since very long now and I am ALL for modesty. Modesty is charming, non-modesty may show as obnoxious, arrogant etc. I am a EU-ian, lived in the US and it was not my cup of tea, the mentality, but again glad I saw something else etc, we always can learn and a lot.. (I did stay in SF and yes liked that place much.) It is great to explore and learn! :-) Kind regards from another Photography~Lover
As a French, I don't really know whether we are a modest poeple. We have the reputation of being arrogant, but I think we just love our country and think it makes the best food, best wine and best cheese on earth (which is very true right? :p)
My parents always brought me up to be a modest person, at least someone who is not arrogant. Sure, I lack self confidence and I would probably benefit from trusting in me a little bit more, but at least I am not considering that I worth better than anyone else. I think that self confidence is good, you have to trust in yourself because if you don't, who will? However, you must not lose sight of what your weakness are. I think that good self confidence is to know where you are strong at, and know where you are weak at, and take advantage of your stenghts to make up for your weakness, to always try to learn how to improve in fields in which we are weak, and to stand up again and again after falling. Self confidence must not be thinking that you can be the best at everything immediatly without learning, this is not misleading others about our capacities (nothing worse than someone overstimating his abilities and overshowing while being a total incompetent!). And above all, self confidence must not turn into arrogance. I hate when people think they are above the rest of the world, that they are the best in something and overlook others for that. Actaully, I think that modesty and self confidence are not opposites. You can trust in you without being a big mouth about it. The real opposites are modesty and arrogance, and actually sometimes arrogance comes from a lack of self confidence. It happens that someone wants to hide his lack of confidence by being arrogant to other people, by building a wall around himself so that others do not realise that he's not feeling comfortable at all.
Thank you for sharing your thoughts on that, it was good to me to think a bit about that!
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Just to be clear, I was joking when saying that the French make the best food etc. I got insulted on my blog by an anonymous people saying that I was arrogant thinking that, but I do not mean it right? So if you read me anonymous guy or girl, know that as a French, my favourite cookings are Italian, Indian, Thai and Vietnamese ccoking and consequetly I see them as WAY better than French food, that I don't like cheese so I couldn't care less about who makes the best and that I'd rather drink beer than wine!
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Hi there! and welcome to San Francisco!!! I recently found you on instagram and from there got to your blog, which i really enjoy reading;) thank you!
As for the question you raised, my experience is quite similar;) I am originally from Russia (born in Ukraine, spent childhood in Siberia and grew up in Moscow). My first relocation was to the UK. There was the first time it struck me how unbelievably easily people are boasting so much about some small achievements… I guess that's different psychology, different approach to life, different upbringing. I do agree with you that it's not necessarily all bad, but there should be a "golden middle";) there is something to learn for us…
I hope you are enjoying San Francisco! Relocation in my experience is always harder than we anticipate but exciting at the same time!;) If you need somebody to have a cup of coffee with ( by now i know a couple of really good spots!) or just go for a walk around and discover some cute spots give me a shout. I'd be really happy to meet! I moved to San Francisco 2.5 years ago and live in Russian hill.