August is here, and for some of us, the long-craved holidays are coming to an unsought end. Whether you made the most of the summer by lounging with a cold drink at the beach, or swung in a hammock on the aged trees in the countryside, we would like to start the new season with an improved competence to be a step closer to achieving that enticing success we dream of.
This is indeed what thirty-two youth workers were planning for when they took the courageous journey to arrive at a small, concealed city in Croatia called Lipik. Filled with joyous faces and keen to expose their knowledge, eight countries – including North Macedonia – joined together for one week for the purpose of training themselves and others through the awaiting course called “Remove”. Our hope at the end of these intensive days is to gather upgraded knowledge on Resilience, Motivation, Values and our Emotions as well as their application on our daily life struggles.
Fresh, rested from the jet lag, the day is emphasized on being adjusted to the current atmosphere and to get comfortable around each other, via various games and team-building exercises. Going through these initially uncomfortable occasions was believed to be fundamental in allowing us to more freely express any bizarre, curious or different opinion in any way later on during our improvement training. As the approaching dusk finds us in the garden, we are sitting in a perfect circle reflecting on the experience we had during the day. After dawn, we can be found behind well-prepared tables doing our best on giving a positive impression of our country. This is done through eloquent dances, enticing facts, and appetizing traditional food.
The following days are chased by compelling workshops given in influential ways to promote learning in the most accessible habits possible. The topics we worked on were ranging from prevention of burnouts, finding a suitable motivation for each of us, staying resilient in the event of a crisis and observing emotions through silence. One by one they provided a unique challenge on how to overcome these barriers that interfered with the current of our life. Each day successfully ended with a daily reflection, where we could more clearly understand the big picture of what was provided to us, what others thought about it and on what lower points we could improve upon.
The meal- and coffee breaks also served as an opportunity to discuss, confer and examine ourselves and share our attitude to it. These intensive and fiercely engaging days were finalized with a glamorous party held in the middle of a demolished and captivating building at the same time, where we put on our best outfits and frame this night into an ever-lasting picture of the people we got to know and learned from on this short, admirable encounter.
It is time for us to head back home. We may have laughed, shared, argued and danced together, but inevitably there is one thing that each of us has at least subconsciously learned, whether we may notice or not, that it is only when we allow others to teach us, be it an experienced tutor or a friend your age, when we are open to others we can greatly and notably make changes to ourselves.