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Creating a magical world: Joy

My Magazine 2022/08
5 min
Author: Angelika Mitterer
Back in Europe after one year in the Gambia, we are feeling the effects of the last few months in crisis mode. What has happened, why have so many people here lost their optimism and most of the time their joy. In our minds, we make a clear distinction between the rather annoying working time and the joyful leisure time, between work as a necessity and play as freedom in leisure time. We clearly feel that work is unfortunately more and more perceived as a burden, but actually we should know - "when we have joy in life, the moments of happiness come by themselves" (Ernst Ferstl). Have we forgotten that, especially in Europe?

Our children are usually taught that work is associated with effort and toil and not with fun and joy. Watching the grown-ups and adults, especially in the western world, they can observe that "joyless and excessive suffering in work" seems to be the key to professional success. In our performance-oriented society, we have lost the joy of life and the ease of working because of all the "stress". The price for this is now clearly visible: happiness and health are steadily declining, only career and money count for success.

Valuable lifetime

But what we forget all too easily is that working time is a large part of our lifetime - and thus a valuable, irretrievable asset! If you do what you do with all your heart, then there will be joy. It is easier to succeed when you enjoy your work because everyone can feel the passion behind it. So you can personally use this time of crisis to reflect on what you really like to do and where you enjoy your work. You then discover your strengths and your own sphere of influence becomes much larger. If you step out of your comfort zone, start to challenge yourself with joy, then it is possible to develop your own potential. Because work is not a duty for everyone, it can be a pleasure.

We too at IN∙US, our network business (IN∙US – a Network for Entrepreneurial Freedom), are in this process and we can observe  and experience more and more  how pleasant it is to experience the development of one’s own creative power and to observe it in others. It has become our mission  to give people the opportunity, especially in times of general crisis, to discover their entrepreneurial potential outside their usual local environment and to pursue entirely new career paths with greater pleasure. In the fellowship of our community, we indulge in our love for adventure together and pursue new goals for the future. Living financial freedom in a thoroughly sustainable society is our greatest drive, which makes it possible to jump further and further beyond our own shadow of personal limitation.

Breaking boundaries

Of course, it is always a great challenge at the beginning to overcome one's personal limits, but now it gives us great pleasure to be able to use and realise completely new business areas. Each individual project is built to be financially, socially and environmentally sustainable and we are delighted to see how our actions are beginning to have a meaningful impact in many different directions. Our work is to connect many different people with a lot of different know-how and to support them in creating exciting new projects and enterprises out of their potential, which will bring independence not only to us, but also to the Gambia in the future from many of the so many imported products.

Our activities here in the Gambia, together with the cooperation with the local population, enriches our lives and thus we have managed to use work as a source of joy and satisfaction.

There are already wonderful, successful model examples here in the Gambia. Sustainable businesses have been built with the right mindset and a focused vision, helping to shape the Gambia as a whole through an expanded offering, which is also making the whole country more and more attractive to tourists. It is great to see how young entrepreneurs in particular pursue their goals with perseverance and thus positively influence society as role models. Mutual networking and support, which works particularly well among female entrepreneurs, are also effectively sustainable. All people who have the strength and power to become active as entrepreneurs, are welcome in the network. "Those who work alone add up, those who work together multiply!" – that is an important principle that we consistently take to heart in our IN∙US network.

My insider tip in The Gambia of the month!

At the end of January 2022, the young and inspiring Gambian Fatou Nijie opened a wellness centre especially for women, focusing on fitness, nutrition and cosmetics, full of energy and joy. After years of business experience abroad, she has returned to her home country and is now determined to successfully implement her business ideas. Phenomenal Women Center is a place where women can feel comfortable, empowered and motivated to implement their sport and exercise routine and take care of their body (mind, body and soul) holistically. There you are not only a client, but part of a large community of women in the Gambia that also networks and supports each other through the wellness centre and where women learn together to gradually stretch their personal limits.

Divided into two zones, the studio offers everything for the body. In the spa area, you can unwind during hair styling, nail and skin care and a wide range of massages, while in the fitness area your body is challenged on all levels and driven to peak performance. Individually or in a group, as you prefer, everything is possible. The wellness centre also offers loving childcare and, on Saturdays, additional children's classes for its clients. So there are really no more excuses, now is the time to finally take control of your health!


Angelika Mitterer
The story of the Austrian architect Angelika Mitterer tells us that the only constant in life is a change and how this can be used as an opportunity for a positive change in one's lifestyle habits.

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