During the first episode of the 100 Day Warrior (in Sept 2014) I asked a handful of people from the creative industry to send me questions that they would like to be answered by the participants of the 100 Day Warrior. Out of approximately 30 questions I selected 13 that seem to cover most of the curiosity of most followers. Nina is the fourth of the 100 Day Warrior IV to answer them. Want to know what the others said too? Before Nina went Carolien, Bo and Julia, and Suzanne who joined a previous edition and shot the beautiful portrait above. But now please read about Nina’s experience:
1. What were your expectations from the 100 Day Warrior? And have they been met?
I started the program pretty blanc; it was kind of a last-minute decision. I tried not to have too many expectations and wanted to surrender myself to what would happen. That was already a challenge for a control-freak like me. In general, my goal to join the 100 Day Warrior was to do something totally different from my normal life. Every few years my ‘spiritual path’ calls out to me, and it felt now was again one of these moments to heed to that calling.
2. How does the 100 Day Warrior affect you?
Incorporating clean eating and daily meditation into my life wasn’t too difficult for me. What made the journey tough were all the feelings that apparently were hiding underneath the surface of my awareness and I had been trying to avoid unconsciously. I’d best describe the 100 days as a roller coaster of unheard emotions that I suddenly had to deal with. It took a while for me to accept that this was something I had to do if I wanted to go forward in my life. Once I accepted that I felt a heavy burden fall of my shoulders. After that the ‘fun’ could begin.
3. How long before you started experiencing results?
It was already during the second session that I was confronted with all the things I had been trying to hide. But after the Warrior Weekend Retreat (at 50 days into the program) things really started to accelerate. Regarding the clean diet and the abstinence from drinking alcohol combined with daily meditation and regular sport practice (the physical part): I felt energized immediately, from week 1. It was as if I was on a natural drug or something; suddenly all this energy came free. I felt strong, like being on top of the world. I wasn’t insecure anymore and my head wasn’t flooding with thoughts and anxieties. However, the ‘side effect’ of my head clearing up was that room was made for some real emotions finally. So my head started to make room for the things that really mattered.
4. What was your biggest misconception of the 100 Day Warrior?
I didn’t have any, actually. As for myself, however, my biggest misconception was that I was already ‘there’. I experienced that grief, and more precisely mourning, isn’t something you can get over; it is something that will continue to show up in life, mostly in unexpected moments, and that there is nothing you can do to control or to stop that. That is just something that you’ll have to deal with. And when you do, something magical happens (I don’t want to make it sound like a fairytale but it truly felt that way).
5. What impressed you most so far?
I find it reassuring that although you can’t control what comes your way, you ARE in charge of how to deal with everything that happens in your life. We tend to relate problems to the outside world, but in the end all obstacles can be found (and solved) in ourself. You are the leader of your own life. That doesn’t necessarily make things easier, but it does provide a feeling of confidence. Sometimes you can feel like everything in life is falling apart, and I have experienced how you can work your way out of that hopelessness. Although this sounds simpler than it actually is, it only takes a few life-changing experiences to discover that. And thanks to meditation, you can always return to that inner wisdom.
6. What was most challenging, scary or demanding?
I really opened myself up during the Warrior Retreat, when Atalwin confronted us with our inner voices. It was hard to allow the ‘damaged self’ to be present, especially because usually, when you do, you don’t immediately see how it benefits you. That generally takes a couple of weeks. And you need courage to go through that scary hole.
7. What is your biggest revelation until now?
See question 5.
8. Which part of the 100 Day Warrior program would you rather have started 10 years ago?
Nothing, because I don’t think I would have been ready for it back then. There’s a time and a place for everything, I guess.
9. How does the 100 Day Warrior serve you in daily life and work?
I see the 100 Day Warrior as a very important chapter in a story full of obstacles and insights. Everything I learned will take me further in my life. On daily basis, I still meditate every day, and if I don’t I immediately notice the difference.
10. Does the 100 Day Warrior have an impact on the way you relate to your life?
Yes, I feel like I am more at ease and, also, more open, loving and caring to others. Although I must immediately add that it’s a constant struggle. Our minds are so dominant and I have to bring myself back to that calm sense every day.
11. What do you expect from the 100 Day Warrior in the long run?
See my answer on question 9; ‘ I see the 100 Day Warrior as a very important chapter in a story full of obstacles and insights. Everything I learned will take me further in my life.’
12. What does the term ‘warrior’ mean to you?
A warrior is someone who is totally in balance with every contradiction in himself. As warriors we don’t strive to be heroes or to achieve a certain goal, but we accept where we are now and try to always be OK with ourselves. We try to live in accordance with our inner wisdom and compassion and we don’t budge for difficult situations where our actions can be (mis)interpreted as mean and unfaithful by others.
13. What is your wish for the future?
The most important thing that I learned from the Warrior program is to live in the ‘now’ and not to constantly wear myself out with everything that may or may not happen in the future. So I tend not to make any predictions :).
Nina Schuyffel (29) can light up a room with her clear eyes and bright smile. She is a freelance journalist and a writer who appears soft spoken and modest on the surface but is wise, strong willed and honest at her core. She works for De Volkskrant, Folia and various other magazines and newspapers and is currently working on her first novel. Nina is passionate about sharing ‘stuff that really matters’. Explore her work at www.ninaschuyffel.nl.