I’ve got a little confession to share…
I never ever ever regarded as Zagreb as a city that I could live in. In the past, I’d land at Zagreb Airport from Heathrow Airport and take the taxi straight to the bus station and get on the first bus to Osijek, four hours away. The first time I took some time to observe out the window and didn’t find anything appealing about the city so the next few times I’d keep my head down and deep into my emails. I repeatedly told my family over and over again that I’d never live in Zagreb, I found it ugly, despite never seeing it from the inside, only from the outskirts. My cousins always told me to give Zagreb a chance because I could easily pave a career here in my line of work as no one is doing the travel and lifestyle blogging with the monster platforms I also have access to. My following stems across 3 major continents, America, Australia and the United Kingdom and I knew I could always show off my greatest passion, my country, Croatia in the brightest light.
Earlier this year my best friend’s boyfriend pitched an idea to me that would put me back in the fashion industry. Adriana Kupresak back in fashion? Back in fashion styling? Back in visual merchandising?
There were two problems.
One, I had to get back into the fashion industry, an industry I wasn’t associated with for almost 3 years but could easily slip back into with my connections in Croatia and in London. Two, for the pitch to be successful, I had to denounce myself in London and consider Croatia’s capital city home.
I don’t know what it is about turning your back on all you know, this comfort zone so many of us find solace in and remain. I don’t know what it is about giving your dreams a chance to evolve that not only scares us, but fuels us at the same time. I deliberated leaving London for at least 3 months before I confirmed the decision to do so. Leaving London for Croatia scared the bejesus out of me, partly because my Croatian is still not perfect, written or oral. But then again, why should I wait for my language skills to be perfect? In my imperfection, I am perfect for my job.
Fearlessness is like a muscle. I know from my own life that the more I exercise it the more natural it becomes to not let my fears run me. Arianna Huffington
Combining my loves; travel, fashion and lifestyle and building a profile in a market that is not saturated like in the UK may seem easier said than done as Croatia’s pace is much slower to that of what I am used to. I guess growing up in Sydney and spending two years in London spoiled me with a fast-track lifestyle. Some have mentioned that I shouldn’t get too discouraged if at first the response is a little slow or dormant. Others have said I have every opportunity to create my own pace and for those who want to play on the same field as me, will need to keep up. There is a lot of work to be done but nothing I have penned down on the bucket list is impossible to achieve.
A few weeks ago my sister sent me an image of an A4 piece of paper I had written when I was 21. On it was a page of goals and the time frame in which I expected to achieve these. Some were ridiculous, for example, own a nightclub, Lamborghini and boutique hotel by 30 while others resembled the polar opposite, write a book, speak openly about your experience with domestic violence and start your own NGO for victims of domestic violence, raise the profile of this silent crime. Needless to say, at 21 I was very very ambitious.
I took a good look at that list, some points made me laugh because I figured they coincided with my party-girl lifestyle that I needed to get over in my own time and others were more humble. It was a special feeling to be able to say that in those 25 points, I had achieved at least 6 of the more realistic ones. One of the biggest points that is relevant today was that I wrote that I wanted to live in Croatia, exactly where was not written.
So here I am, 6 months away from my 30th birthday (and thank you to all those saying I look 26), living in Croatia, feeling much happier and alive than when I did when I was in London. Maybe it’s the people. Maybe it’s the setting. But it’s most likely the result of following your heart and trusting the process unconditionally.
Shop My Look
Playsuit – H&M
Sunglasses – Mango
Heels – Aquazzura