Living Life Based on Love, Not Fear

One of the most obvious cultural differences I’ve come across on my visit to Germany has really got my thinking lately. The people here tend to be risk-averse. They take the safe route. They’re also extremely practical and do a great job at managing their expectations. Everything is planned and everything goes according to plan. I truly respect that.

However, it’s got me thinking. For most of my life, I had always taken the path that would best shield me from disappointment and failure (I’ve shared a little bit about my upbringing here). But I’ve realised over the last few years that I don’t really do that anymore. I’ve developed an ability, one that gets me into a lot of trouble, but is also one of my greatest sources of happiness – my ability to leap into the unknown.

Leaping Before I’m Ready

I often find myself jumping into the unclear, blinded by my need for growth and adventure. I do it much before I’ve learned to fly, hoping that I’ll grow wings on the way down. It’s caused a lot of problems in the past. I’ve found myself lost, broke and starting over. But it’s also lead to me some pretty amazing places. Like right here. Right now.

These days, it’s not uncommon for me to be talking to someone about how I make big life decisions, and they look at me like I have an unrealistic view of life. Like my head is way too high in the clouds. Maybe they’re right.

It Hasn’t Always Been This Way

My situation during childhood left me riddled with trust issues. You could say that fear ruled my life. It robbed me of a lot of happiness. But I’ve been lucky enough to have had some life-changing travel experiences, met some wonderful people, and read some incredible books that have all helped me to overcome my fears and choose a life based on love.

I now have a strong ability to just trust. To trust the process even when it seems unclear. To trust that the outcome will be good even when it really seems like it won’t be. To trust that I’ll always be taken care of even when things aren’t in my favour. To trust that no matter what or where or how or why, everything will be ok.

And so it has. Everything has always turned out ok.

The Key to Living Passionately and Authentically

In the last few years, this trust has lead me to do some crazy things. Like that time Toby asked me to marry him only three months into our relationship. I decided to be totally crazy and say yes. There weren’t too many people that could agree with what I was getting myself into. I hadn’t even finished university yet! Years later, and I’m the happiest I’ve ever been in love and in life.

Or when I decided to leave my hometown, a comfortable bubble with my established support and professional network, for some cold European country where I found myself jobless and unable to communicate with people.

The thing about happiness is, you don’t find it in the end goal. You don’t find it when you get fall in love, or when you land your dream job or get that apartment you’ve been eyeing. You’ll most likely just find yourself wanting more once you have it. Happiness is found in the now, in the imperfectly perfect journey you’re on right now. So what are we all afraid of? Fear isn’t going to save you from anything because life is always going to be filled with contrasts, whether you shield yourself or not. The ups, the downs, the ins, the outs. At the end of the day, we shouldn’t be afraid of judging eyes, broken bones or broken hearts.

My greatest fear is that I look back and realise I’ve lived a life based on fear instead of love.

Are You Choosing Love or Fear?

Do you work in your job because you love what you do?  Or do you do it because that’s what others expect of you?

Are you in a relationship because you love the person you are with?  Or because you fear being alone?

I hope that if you ever reach a turning point in your life, you will always choose the things that make your heart beat faster and your soul sing… I really hope that. That you face your fears, and act from a place of love and authenticity. That you tolerate nothing less than your greatest love and wildest dreams. Because that’s what life is about. It’s why we’re here. To create as many happy, passionate, crazy beautiful moments as possible.

I still struggle with fear. I still have bad days. But at the end of it, I always choose love. So wherever my path may lead from here on in, no matter how many wrong turns I make, dead ends I meet, cliffs I reach… I hope that the only thing that changes is my ability to settle deeper into this trust with every leap.

I wish it for me and I wish it for you.

The Dream Chapter Logo xo Sarahannabella signature



  1. Hi Sarah,

    I just stumbled across your blog. I am so inspired by your messages and quality of photos. So stunning and a breath of fresh air for wanting to be authentic with a good dose of love as the foundation! I am hoping you will create a blog post of your favorite books that have helped you along your journey through life. Best!

  2. This post has made me feel both so emotional and inspired. I’m really glad that you have shared this because it’s definitely one of the things I need to feel better due to my current situation. I have been judged numerous times because I’m not taking the ‘safe’ route or doing what’s expected after finishing high school last year, which at times make me feel hopeless and all sorts of negative emotions. But after reading this, all those unwanted opinions don’t really affect me too much anymore and like you said, I should just focus on the present (so the future may be better). Your post also reminded me of one of my favorite quotes from my favorite group, ‘Happiness is not something that you have to achieve. You can still feel happy during the process of achieving something’ -Kim NamJoon.

    • Thank you Monica for sharing your thoughts! The social pressure is so real, especially when you are young and freshly out of school. But you fought past that and chose the path that you feel is right for you. So proud of you, girl! Whenever I do something unconventional, I’m also worrying a lot what others think. It’s a very human thing and something that I will probably never stop feeling. But you just gotta do what you can to silence those thoughts and work towards the goals you’re trying to achieve. Thank you for sharing that lovely quote from Kim NamJoon! I totally agree 🙂

  3. Hi Sarah! Thanks you for this inspiring post that you’ve shared ! We need more of this !
    Much love ❤️

  4. I just started reading your blogs today & I couldn’t stop haha. This post inspired & touched me. I’ve made so many mistakes that recently I’ve been living in fear. I just realized that now after reading this. I’d always be afraid of how I’ll be judged or how bad the outcome is. I’d take the safer or easier way out or sometimes I won’t even do it. I was never like this until I let fear get to me. But after reading this post, I don’t want to live out of fear anymore. When i make decisions I want my heart to be beating so fast from excitement and love. I want to be genuinely happy & proud of myself again and not think “what if I did this instead?” I am very excited to start living my life based on love. I’m so thankful for coming across your blog site 💖 I look forward to reading more of your blogs!

    • I’m so proud of you Sarah and I think you should be too. Thank you for sharing your story with us. I used to let peoples judgements get to me too and wouldn’t do what really made me happy because of that… ahhh such wasted time 🙁 It’s normal to be scared after bad past experiences and I’m happy to know that you will try not to let fear hold you back anymore! Wishing you only adventures based what makes your heart beat fastest! There will always be ups and downs, but at least you won’t live with any regrets 💖

    • And thank you so much for your feedback on my blog post! I really, really, really appreciate every comment you leave me across my accounts Sarah! <3

  5. Sarah; you are a pretty darn insightful but then I’m not surprised. You seem to have found a calling as I’d hoped you would.
    References to love and all that that entails (may) refer to the seven stages of love??? I’m proof positive that the seventh is the best and worth the work and the wait. grandpa

  6. Thank you so much for letting us know a bit more about you. Earlier your long captions and now your blog posts, i really enjoy reading, as I said before your life experiences is the best thing I love reading about. Your writing make me feel what you went through and at times i smile when it’s going pretty well but the other time when it isn’t going well i feel sad. I’m so happy, you are so good at controlling yourself and at the end everything is fine even after all those tough times you didn’t lose hope. Thanks a ton for your lovely advice💕💕

    • You’re welcome Ananta! You don’t need to feel sad for me ever because things always turn out ok 😉 Wishing you all the love and happiness in the world, sweetie 😘

  7. Sarah! This is the most valuable inspiring advice I’ve ever gotten. I’m in my seventeenth with no clue of how I should face the world in just a year. I’m still lost in the middle of my life. The thing is I always find my self in fear of being alone, ignore, my voices that won’t be heard, the imperfections and they all just haunt me down. I’ve been thinking alot lately of what I should do after graduation but it feels like there’s nothing I can do, like everything doesn’t suit me at all. Eventhough I couldn’t figure out what I should do, which career I should be in the near future, I will trust your advice and choose whatever that make my heart beats faster.
    I really appreciate this advice you’ve given and really hope other people will find the motivation it gives as much as I do. 😉

    • Hi Hena! Wow that means so much, thank you!! I was really lost at 17 as well. I had no idea what I wanted to study and ended up picking something my parents approved of rather than picking what I actually loved but might not have been so safe… Well now don’t even use that degree haha.

      I think it’s always hard having to pick something at such a young age, especially because you don’t have enough experience to understand all the fields available to you. My suggestion is to just pick something that interests you the most for now so that you’re at least enjoying your study as you work towards understanding what it is you really want to do. Or you can take a gap year if that’s possible for you 🙂 In any case, you’re going to figure it out eventually! But always go with what makes your heart beat faster <33

  8. Everyday I’m waiting for a new blog post from you because you inspire me so much! I love how you spend your life the way you want to filled with lots of love and it’s incredible. I didn’t know you were an actual loving human being because you weren’t replying to my emails. Although now I know how much you value every one of your readers and you take the time to actually respond to us. Your my inspiration forever and always and I hope I get to experience things in the future like you.


    • Hi Sarmin! That is so sweet to hear you are waiting everyday for a post! It’s so heart warming to know I have such loyal readers. Thank you sooo much for your support!! I suppose I am very loving and romantic haha probably a bit too much :’)

      I do reply to all emails, but I can take a little while to get back because I have so requests. Did you see my last response a couple of days ago?

      You always have the power to create the life of your dreams, you just have to find the courage and perseverance to go for it!

      Wishing you all the best my dear Sarim! <3

  9. Beautiful piece, Sarah! Plus I love seeing you in more casual attire. Not that I don’t love seeing you in your beautiful dresses and all, but you hopefully know what I mean. 😊

  10. Beautiful post Sarah. I always look forward to these types of posts. You should do more of them! I love getting to know you more through your writing.

    • Thanks Karen! I’m trying to post more often and become a better blogger so hopefully you will see posts like these more regularly! 🙂

  11. Oh Sarah, this is really a very inspiring blog. And i can say that through your blogs, we got to know you more and its so heartwarming whenever i read your posts whether be it on instagram or here in your blogsite. Thank you for inspiring a lot of people especially me.
    : )

  12. Sarah this has to be one of your most inspiring pieces yet! I always find myself worrying and then taking the safe route. I’m so glad you shared your story with us – it’s exactly what I needed to hear 🙂 I have some pretty big decisions right ahead of me and was overthinking things for weeks! I will try my best to choose love :*

    • Thank you Christina! I’m happy this blog post came to you at the right time. In my opinion, you can’t go wrong if you choose love 🙂 Wishing you all the best hun <3

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