La Tela di Carlotta
it en es

Want a change in your life? Find the cave!

Nov 9, 2018

Today I want to tell you about two small changes in our life that we made after coming back from Canada and have been a huge improvement in our lifestyle.

  • We sold Alex’s scooter and bought two foldable bikes (we chose Brompton because… well, it’s Brompton! ;-)).
  • We sold our beloved Stokke Xplory and bought a stroller that can also be attached to the bikes (we chose Thule Cross, the single because the double wouldn't even fit through our home door).

Alex bikes to work every morning. We have date nights on our bikes! We never take the car in the afternoons (which made me decide to drastically reduce the amount of extra activities and change to a more slow lifestyle). Our two Bromptons + the trailer + the kids’ Woom bikes all fit in the trunk of our car, so we’re going for bike trips at the weekend. Which. We. Love.

This is a video from our first biking adventure, we put Emily in the trailer and Oliver went on his Woom 2, and… we were amazed: Emily was happy looking out and chatting away, and Oliver biked almost all the time—he walked his bike for about 3 minutes before getting bored and powering through the rest of the hardest uphill!

Thinking about changes in our life

Our new lifestyle made me think about change in general, which is something that’s been on my mind a lot lately because of a HUGE change coming our way very soon—one that makes me equally excited and terrified. Change is so hard, isn’t it? Especially when it involves changing ourselves, our attitude, our personality, our habits, getting out of our comfort zone.

But the more I think about my past experiences and future decisions, the more I realise three things:

1. I am the only one who can make the change happen

I don’t want to belong to that category of people who long for a change, but never do anything about it. And this applies to everything in our life, big and small: getting rid of that commitment that is making you feel overwhelmed; changing job; moving houses; buying a house; moving countries; waking up earlier; eating healthier; reading more; loosing weight; stopping yelling at your kids; spending more quality time with your people; setting your priorities right…

There are so many people who know that a change would make them happier, but they never even take the first step towards it. That makes me sad, so today I want to tell you this:

If you’re one of them, here’s the good news: YOU can make it happen. Today. Decide on it, commit to it, focus on it, and start today. If you do, the change won’t happen tomorrow, no, but chances are that it will happen eventually.

Here’s the bad news: ONLY YOU can make it happen.

2. I am the only obstacle that separates me from real change

Our mind is powerful both in the most positive and the most destructive way, and when it comes to change, there’s lots of resistance. I feel like our minds are masters at creating excuses for us not to make a change that could make us happier. Why? Because fear. Because change is scary. Because it means getting out of our comfort zone. Because it means relearning about ourselves, our life, our priorities. And also because it usually gets worse before it gets better.

Every time I have to make a change in my life it feels like leaving a calm and peaceful lake—the known, the familiar—to swim down a stormy, crocodile-infested river that drops into a waterfall. It’s frightening.

Change is always for the better

I haven’t yet found a magic formula to let go of the fear of change. Planning the change, i.e “start next Monday, next month, next year”, might work—although it might also create unhealthy expectations and useless stress. Waking up one morning and decide “today I’ll stop this/I’ll start that” might also work—although it might be a short-lived enthusiasm (and also not many people can realistically make a change in the blink of an eye).

Whichever the strategy, I feel like what’s worked best for me in the past is to convince my mind (and truly believe) that change is always for the better: no matter whether you know where it’ll take you or not, no matter if you succeed or fail, no matter if you finally go through with it or not, on the other side of change—at the bottom of that waterfall—life is always better: you’re a better version of yourself, you know yourself better, your perspective is wider, you have a better understanding. And yes, you always survive the drop ;-).

Change is hard. It takes a lot of work, a lot of courage and, often, a leap of faith. There’s always progress, there’s always regress. But once you start, everything feels easier.

Decide on something, commit to it, focus on it, and start today. In a week, you’ll be happy you did.

Find the cave!

And just as I was about to publish this post, I ran into one the most beautiful quotes I’ve ever read—which spoke directly to my soul, which is yet another sign of the path I have to take.

“Remember Joseph Campbell’s wisdoms: “the cave you fear to enter hold the treasure you seek”. Own the fear, find the cave, and write a new ending for yourself […]. Choose courage over comfort. Choose whole hearts over armor. And choose the great adventure of being brave and afraid. At the exact same time.” (from the book Dare to Lead by Brené Brown)

Tell me what you think

Did you like it? Do you agree or disagree? I'd love to hear from you.

I think you'll like these

The blog

I write mainly about Montessori, parenthood, and multilingualism. Here are some recent posts.

Montessori
One day a few years ago my husband came home and said, "Why don't we put a mattress on the floor in the baby room? It'd be much more natural". "Never" was my reply. That's how our Montessori journey started. Since then we've been living, breathing and applying the philosophy at home day in and day out, starting from ourselves. Because educating children starts from the parents.
Bean and seed mosaic
I'm not perfect. I'm aware
DIY yoga cards for kids
Children at the restaurant: let's recalibrate expectations
Don't ask your children to share their toys
Those "good job" that erode our children's confidence
Our Montessori birthday
Two alternatives to screens that my kids love
Using fear and threats to control children is never right!
"Stop crying!" doesn't work
Living sustainably
Living sustainably for me doesn’t only mean to have a more eco-friendly lifestyle. It means to make decisions that are sustainable for our planet, the people on it, but also for our life, our lifestyle, and our happiness. It means to take any daily chance to evolve and be happier, healthier, kinder, more responsible and more caring human beings—the only sustainable way for a meaningful future.
Face yoga is an act of self love
Why you should wear the same outfit twice on Instagram
The power of creating habits (and why you should do it, even if you then break them!)
Responsible eating is the diet of the future (Would you like to teach it to your kids?)
The power of NOT complaining: can you do it for a whole month?
Clean up your planet, please!
Infographic: 8 steps to switch to cloth nappies (a guide for reluctant parents)
A personal note on happiness
A personal note on social media
A change of life always widens your horizons
New to La Tela?
I’ve prepared collections on various topics that I’ve written over the years. Perhaps you’ll find one that interests you.

Travel

We sold everything to travel the world for two years. We're currently in New Zealand.

Books

In 2020 I wrote 4 books for the Italian collection “Gioca and Impara con il metodo Montessori” curated by Grazia Honegger Fresco. The collection is a project by Il Corriere della Sera and La Gazzetta dello Sport.

We also implemented the workshops of the last 15 volumes of the collection with Oliver and Emily.

Podcast

On my podcast, “Educare con calma”, I talk about various topics, from Montessori to sustainability. Only in Italian!

Oct 16, 2020 • 19m
La nostra routine con i bimbi
Mi chiedete spessissimo quale sia la nostra routine a casa con i bimbi e in questo episodio vi svelo che noi, una routine vera e propria, non ce l'abbiamo. Abbiamo una routine minima e indispensabile, che è un concetto che mi sono totalmente inventata su due piedi mentre parlavo a briglia sciolta in questo episodio, ma che credo funzioni davvero. Almeno per noi. La routine minima e indispensabile, secondo me, risponde anche a un altro "problema": trovo che ci bombardino spesso con l'idea del...
11
Oct 9, 2020 • 24m
Sostenibilità: come sensibilizzare i bambini e i giovani adulti | Con Cristiana Cerri Gambarelli
In questa puntata a due voci di Educare con Calma – divisa a metà perché amo gli episodi corti - parliamo di sostenibilità e per farlo ho invitato mia sorella, Cristiana Cerri Gambarelli, project manager della Federazione dei Giovani Verdi Europei e un esempio per chiunque voglia intraprendere un viaggio nella sostenibilità: negli ultimi ha cambiato tutta la sua vita per ridurre la sua impronta di carbonio e per prendere ogni giorno decisioni più sostenibili per il nostro pianeta e in questa ...
10
Oct 2, 2020 • 24m
Intraprendere un viaggio nella sostenibilità | Con Cristiana Cerri Gambarelli
In questa puntata a due voci di Educare con Calma – divisa a metà perché amo gli episodi corti - parliamo di sostenibilità e per farlo ho invitato mia sorella, Cristiana Cerri Gambarelli, project manager della Federazione dei Giovani Verdi Europei e un esempio per chiunque voglia intraprendere un viaggio nella sostenibilità: negli ultimi ha cambiato tutta la sua vita per ridurre la sua impronta di carbonio e per prendere ogni giorno decisioni più sostenibili per il nostro pianeta e in questa ...
9

Instagram

I update Instagram almost every day to be "close" to my family far away.

Why La Tela di Carlotta?
I dreamed of the name La Tela di Carlotta. One morning I woke up and in my dreams I had created a blog named just like the American novel (Charlotte's Web). Many years and endless ups and downs later, this web of thoughts and stories is my work. It took me a long time to understand what kind of online presence I wanted and today I know: I'm transparent, I show real life, I don't advertise, I only recommend sustainable brands (and not only because they pay me) and I believe in the value of my blog and my courses—because if we don't believe in the value of our work, no one will believe in it for us.
Carlotta
Carlotta dreaming of La Tela
I know! I don't want it to be over yet either.