Berlin: Chapter One (Part Two) – Self-Actualization

What I enjoyed the most during these past three years was to be able to do a lot. I had the time to slowly adapt to the fantastic German culture and to meet great people.

Great news #1: German C1 exam

It feels like it was yesterday when I took the U2 for the first time to go to German class. In Europe, the language scale goes from A1 to C2. For three years, I visited the Hartnackschule on and off adding up regular intensive classes -3hours a day, 5 times a week-, to grammar, speaking or writing classes. Recently, although it was not planned at all, I passed my C1 exam. Wow, finally the language barrier is now crossed!

The school is one of the biggest in Berlin and is pretty central. I have had several different teachers and for the most part they were really good. I can only recommend it. I have met a lot of great people who I still keep in touch with. It was an amazing experience.

Great news #2: the job

Gaining experience is absolutely not a matter of passivity. It is not because years have passed, that you have gained something. Experience has to do with trials and how you overcame them. I am glad for the challenges I have faced until now. Probably one of the hardest ones was to not have a job. Not only was it hard to handle the peer-pressure but also as I am a Master graduate. I have always loved and enjoyed working, and not being able to be part of a common project for such a long period of time started to become heavy on my shoulders.

Also, I have literally emptied my bank accounts to do all the things I have been doing -yes, studying has a cost. We have been enjoying all the benefits Berlin has to offer with one salary, but on the other hand, all the extras were also digging into our savings.

Now comes the second big news. After so many unfruitful searches, I was finally contacted for a job offer. I am extremely glad about it and I cannot be more thankful to the friend who talked to me about this position. I will soon start the job and I’m so excited because I will be working mainly in English and because I’m 15 minutes walking distance from home. Working means to me: supporting other people, making gifts, saving again, making projects, and being able to afford certain things I couldn’t so far – it seriously makes me emotional. It was really about time – financially as well as personally – and God provided it just in time.


Self-actualizationNow what about all the projects I have been working on all these years? As you know, self-actualization is at the top of Maslow’s pyramid. If you live in a developed country and have a supporting community, the first four stages should be somehow covered, but what about the one at the top?

I have decided that completing my Bachelor in Philosophy will not be feasible. Although I enjoy it, it is way too demanding. However, I will still read the classes and study at my pace, but without the stress of examinations. Also, the universities in Berlin offer an interesting option for people who want to attend some lectures without being students: “Gasthörerschaft”. At the Humboldt, the fees are about 15euros per hour per semester, so if the lecture is two hours, the semester costs only 30euros – which is really good for a university class. I’ll see if I have time to consider this option because I would really love to.

More personally, I need to focus on my health and I am committed to training seriously. I have never been an athlete and this is really challenging for me, but absolutely necessary.

Now that I am about to go to the next chapter, I feel like these three years went by super fast. I have been doing so much in this time. Learning a new -and not the easiest- language, working on my Philosophy degree, working on video editing, starting my blog, working on personal projects, reading a lot of books and investing in my close and distant relationships. I am more motivated than ever to build myself a great future.

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