Berlin: Grit City
Growing up with such an incredibly hard-working mother as a role model, the concept that success isn’t given, it’s earned was instilled in me at a very young age. From my days as a competitive dancer on the Dynamic Allstars Dance Team (you read dat right!) to making this Eurotrip a reality, my drive and relentless determination to achieve my goals has always been something I take pride in.
One of my favorite Will Smith quotes, and yes I have multiple favorites, is: “The only thing that I see that is distinctly different about me is I'm not afraid to die on a treadmill. I will not be out-worked, period. You might have more talent than me, you might be smarter than me, you might be sexier than me, you might be all of those things you got it on me in nine categories. But if we get on the treadmill together, there's two things: You're getting off first, or I'm going to die. It's really that simple, right?” For me, it is that simple. You either hustle or you hand over your dream to someone who will.
Recently, though, it’s been difficult to get this fiery passion inside of me going. I’ve been spending way too much time dwelling on things I can’t change and being envious of those who have achieved goals similar to mine, rather than putting in the work that it’s going to take to get me there! Smh.
Up until right now it’s been difficult for me to pinpoint why I fell so hard for Berlin. There are SO many reasons I love the city, but what I love the most is that it embodies this grit and determination more than any of the places that I’ve visited. It’s a city full of creators, innovators, artists, musicians and overall hustlers striving to achieve whatever it is their hearts desire.
This ingenious passion was incredibly inspirational and seemed to be a growing trend amongst the Berliners I met during my time there.
The city is a constant reminder that regardless of your past or where you’re from, we’re all capable of accomplishing what we set our minds to, if we’re willing to put in the work. Or in the words of Angela Duckworth (author of Grit), “greatness is doable.”
So thanks for the wake up call, Berlin. I needed it.