What do you like to do? vs. What are you good at?

Reading children’s books is one of the best things you could do for your tired (pretending to know how to be an) adult mind. The Little Prince happens to be my favorite book of all times and I try to read it at least once a year around my birthday because that’s when I usually feel…

What happens when you stop comparing yourself to others

“Comparison is the thief of joy“ – T. Roosevelt I’ve already heard stuff like this so many times that it almost causes involuntary eye-rolling. But it just recently struck me exactly how powerful this can be, more specifically how much joy you can get by not comparing your situation to other’s. Trevor Noah is my new…

2 ways of looking at things

I was sitting on a bench in Antwerp, enjoying the sun and free wi-fi, when a cute little girl with puppy eyes and Sailor Moon braids came up to me and smiled. While blushing and looking at her shoes, she said: -We’re selling cookies for kids in Nepal to build them a school because their…

Leaving things unfinished

Growing up I was taught that you have to finish things: you have to finish what’s on your plate, you have to finish the book, you have to finish your studies. It’s just how the world works. So 99% of the time I’d finish the food on my plate although I knew it was too much and…

The first time I hitchhiked

I think it would be fair to tell you about the 1st time I hitchhiked. Just to make it more authentic, I will copy & paste what I wrote last year shortly after the experience itself because if I were to rewrite it now I would probably change a few things, but I prefer to…

The happiness indicator

There’s this statistic going around every year ranking countries based on the happiness level of the people living there. And more often than not the Netherlands are in the Top 10 happiest countries in the Word Happiness Report. Is it because of the stroopwafels? Is it because of the good work-life balance? Is it because…

Leaving things unsaid

I live in the Netherlands and people here are well known for their direct ways. It’s one of the first things pointed out to you when talking about the Dutch culture, both by themselves and foreigners. And once you get used to it, I have to say it’s so refreshing not having to ask yourself…

What would happen if we faked a little kindness?

Today I was biking around the city with a friend and we ended up in front of the impressive Essalam mosque. In awe, we got off our bikes to take a few pictures and look around. Neither of us had ever seen the inside of a mosque so we were curious, but we thought it would…

The key to what?

Since you are here on this blog I assume you already know that Ana (that’s me) has a key. And I feel it’s fair to tell you right from the beginning that this is the key to… none of these. Or maybe it is and I don’t know it yet. I recently watched a really interesting documentary…