CATEGORY: Personal Growth

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Peace is the result of retraining your mind to process life as it is, rather than as you think it should be.

~ Wayne W. Dyer,
an internationally renowned author and speaker in the field of self-development

Finding the beauty in a lockdown

A friend of ours recently made a picture of night wintery Amsterdam, the Dutch city that never sleeps.

Here it is ….

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

Why is this picture so unique, you may ask?

Well, because…

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

In order to get this mirror effect, you need to have very calm waters, which almost NEVER happens in Amsterdam – the boats are swarming the channels constantly, so the water is rarely still.

Since the lockdown in The Netherlands, the streets and canals of Amsterdam are free from boats, tourists, sounds and motion.

Silence and tranquility.

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

Next, the crispy effect of the reflection can happen so prefect ONLY when there is very thin ice on top of it, which – on its own – is a miracle: the ice needs to be very slim, just formed by the night frost.

Undisturbed by movement.
In a perfect symmetrical harmony.
Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

Lastly, to make this kind of a picture you need to find a large water space and take the picture from a distance. In Amsterdam, space is an eternal challenge, so there are a handful of places – of all the 165 canals and 1200+ bridges – where you could stand and take a photo that potentially can deliver such a rare beauty of peace and calmness.

Incredible, huh?
I hope this photo reminds you that there is beauty in silence and stillness.
Even in a lockdown.
Embrace the beauty and smile.
Smile to everything you see.
Smile to the person you see in the mirror.
As she or he deserves to be loved and beautiful every day.
Even during a lockdown.

.2020 was all about learning. 2021 will be about purposeful applying.

Inspired by Prue Sturgeon

Mine the Gold from 2020

Since we enter the new year, let me offer you a powerful new-year practice – the Gold Mining Exercise  a compelling way to become present in the current moment and get clarity about where we are moving to. 

As you are reading this, you might consider taking a pen and paper. I will guide you through an easy process, where we take the past year, reflect on it, and move onto the new space and time of the new year. 

For that, I am going to take you through 3 questions, and my invitation to you is to use them and explore what is there for you. 

The goal of the practice is to mine for the gold of 2020. Those questions will allow you to elicit what that gold means for you and your life.

For this exercise, make a little stroll back to JAN 2020, a year ago.

Take a moment and close your eyes. 

Take a deep breath… 

Bring yourself into that moment of time. Allow your mind to wander back – wherever you were, and whatever circumstances surrounded you. Take a walk through the beginning of the year. 

Who were the people you had the opportunity to meet or the places you had the chance to visit? 

Fast forward through the spring and the summer… 

Do you notice new choices that you have made? Or any memorable experiences you had? Or changes that made you grow or raise up? Did you get involved in a new project or started a brand-new hobby? 

Move towards the autumn of that year and try to recall … 

Did you acquire new skills? Created any new offers or services? Did you break through any long-standing patterns that are holding you back? Did you do something completely uncomfortable and scary? 

Passing through the last quarter of the year, evoke how the lockdown for you was.

What did it allow you to experience? What was your family-life like or your relationships like? What were the HIGHs and the LOWs for you? 

* * *

As your thoughts are rushing through, write them down as a list, or as bullet points, for example. Take the time to write your thoughts down. 

Now, scan through your notes and notice if there is an overarching theme. Can you pinpoint it?

Ok, here comes the first question:

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

What is the gold you are taking from 2020 onwards?

Look at your notes and highlight those activities and experiences you want to keep in the new year.

  • Which ones brought a positive influence for you? 
  • What is it that you want to keep doing moving onwards?
  • What new habits you’d like to preserve?
  • How did you respond to the crisis?

Let me share mine to give you an example. 

When I was going through my 2020-exercise, I noticed that my gold revolves around Appreciation and Gratitude.
I started in 2020, hoping to get what I
wanted. Instead, I learned to appreciate what I have – be grateful for having a healthy family, occupation, and a roof over my head.
This experience made me humble to accept abnormal circumstances and – despite them – make decisions for bettering my life. 

So, I invite you to take the time and reflect on what is that thing that you’d bring from 2020 over to the new year.

This brings us to question #2: 

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

What are you choosing to let go of from 2020?

Again, place yourself in the present moment, and review anew the list you just created.

  • Do you notice any lingering patterns that aren’t serving you, like limiting beliefs and stories about yourself or your life?
  • If you need to draw a line, what would you choose to leave behind when moving to 2021?
  • What are you letting go of?

As for me, I was spending too much time on learning and less on doing.
I found myself eager to learn all-there-is-to-know before making the step to realization.

My invitation to myself is to immediately put into practice all that I learn to use the momentum and savor the results, even if they are small improvements. I need to create the habit of applying my learnings without waiting for the perfect moment to arise. 

Ok, by now, you’ve been on a big journey through 2020 – you’ve made reflection points about what is keeping you up or letting you down.

Moving into this fresh new year, close your eyes again, and focus on question #3: 

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

What are you choosing for yourself for 2021?

You can take as long as you need to answer this question, but I invite you to be true to yourself. For that, imagine yourself at the end of 2021.

  • What would you like to have experienced more?
  • What do you want to have felt more of for yourself?  
  • Who do you want to have become?
  • What changes do you want to have brought for yourself, your family, and your community?

In my case, moving to 2021, what I want for myself is one word: PURPOSE.

My purpose is to respectfully serve others with love to help them understand and appreciate their value so that they are fulfilled, living their lives in peace and harmony.

I want to live my purpose and find out how it would show up for me.
I want to exercise my skills, so I can be in my genius and be around others who are in their genius, therefore we can grow together. 

What are you inviting in for yourself for 2021? 

I encourage you to share your gold under this post.
Let me challenge you further: tag 3 other people to share their gold.

2021 will be an amazing year. I am certain of it. Why? Because we will make it so. Together.

Let us get clear on our 2021 – let us get clear on the gold we are taking from 2020 and integrate it into the new year. Most importantly, support other individuals to do the same.

So, enjoy this little exercise, share your learnings from 2020. I can’t wait to read about your findings and lessons. And with that, let us co-create a better reality for everyone in 2021.

Much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on.

~ Steve Jobs,
a pioneer of the personal computer revolution and Apple co-founder

Stay intimately curious like a little kid

Kids are ferocious learners.
The most asked question a kid asks is,

“Why are things the way they are?”

Their curiosity is a grand motivator for them to learn and grow.
They challenge everything they touch.

Kids don’t ask:
“Would I be able to do it?”
“What should I do?”
“I will not be able to do it, because … “
“How can I do it?”

They simply get curious about life, and they explore it with no hesitation.
Their impulse is to learn more and know more – about all there is to know.
Every day!

That is why they ask,

Stay intimately curious like a little kid

Until the kids become adults …

The adults start asking,
What?“, “When?” and “How?

as in:
“What if I do …”
“What if I don’t …”
“When I do it …”
“How would I do it …”
“What if I can’t … “
“How would I know … “

And we call this wisdom, huh?

What if we – the adults – stop questioning our WHY?
How about we focus on our decisions and inner strength?

Stay intimately curious like a little kid

How about we always remain curious?

Many people become a victim of doing-nothing, drifting with the knowledge learned at school.
I say: remain curious and learn new things, every day.

Remember: there are no victims in life.
There are only volunteers who choose to feel like victims. 

Choose not to be in the cycle of “winning and losing“,
but in the rhythm of “winning and learning“.

Today is the opportunity that we did not have yesterday. Today is all we have.
In this day, we can stay in the present and make that day count,
embracing the WHY we had when we were kids. 

So, learn today, anew. 

Be curious and allow your self to be teachable.
Permit others to donate knowledge to you. And do that regularly by continuously learning. 

Because learning how to learn is the most important skill to acquire. 

We are all given a gift of life: the gift of being alive.
Hence, it is ultimately essential what we do with this life. 

My advice?

Learn to grow and to win. 

Learn and stay intimately curious like a little kid. 

Stay curious!

Get educated, supported, and tooled up!

What if there is an education that can guide you out of the economic crisis?

What if there is a way to come out of 2020 secure, strong, and knowledgeable?

The Digital Experts Academy of SFM is offering all you need to have to build your own digital business, from scratch. Have a look at the ALL-IN EDUCATION PACKAGE, should you wish to shift your life, and reach your true potential.



No matter how I have been, you’ve always stood by me.
What is a father-in-law I don’t know. In you, a perfect father I see.

~ unknown

My “father-in-LOVE” passed away just an hour after my arrival…” 

shared in grief a colleague of mine the sad news on Thursday, last week.

* * *

That event seems to have shattered the world around him as he had known his father-in-law for more than 30 years. They have lived close by and have supported each other’s families in good and tough times. 

I tried to digest the information, feeling compassionate for what has happened. The loss of a close family member always leaves dear memories in the hearts of those who stay behind to continue the journey of Life. 

What touched me deeply was the expression my colleague used when he said:

my father-in-love
instead of
my father-in-law.

At first, I thought I didn’t hear it well, but he repeated the same phrase again with equal emotions and empathy towards the lost father.  

I found the expression “my father-in-love” much more appealing and inspiring, despite the word-play and the genuine grammatical mistake. I decided that it will become a part of my vocabulary, as it brings the essence of human appreciation to elderly parents.
And to the parents of your life-partner.

I am not fortunate to know my “father-in-law” and have always felt the void of missing that figure in my Life as a young husband. I expected Life to grant me the gift of having such a person so I can learn from him about the fatherly love to a daughter (who is now my partner-in-life). 

However, I am blessed to have a mother-in-law, whom I dearly respect. I am grateful for having her supporting presence. From now on, I would call her “my mother-in-love”.

* * *

Today, I invite you to take a minute, pick up the phone, and get in touch with your parents-in-law.
Ask them how they are, how they fare in Life, what they might need.
Spend a moment to listen to them with the intent to be there for them.
Appreciate their words and seek wisdom in them.
Express your gratitude.  

Love your parents-in-law, as someone else loves your parents as well. 

You might be a parent to a daughter or a son. When they marry, imagine who you would want to be for the other “side” – a parent-in-law or a parent-in-LOVE. It all depends on you.

Today. Today is all you have.

Choose wisely who you would want to be when the time comes.

We are mathematical equations where your life is the sum of all choices you’ve made until now.
The good news is you can change the equation so that you start making a difference in your life.

~ Steve Maraboli

In mathematics, an equation is a statement that asserts the equivalence of two expressions that have the same value.

In daily life, I encounter things that carry the same meaning and hold the same value. Only … we seem to be very busy to make a pause, realize them, and appreciate their accuracy.

Here are 12 equations I learned through my life journey. I call them, “Life equations” – made up statements between two expressions, which carry the same meaning in Life, for me. When I hear the left expression, I think about the one on the right. The latter carries a special meaning for me – a pearl of precious wisdom, which I should not forget.

These equations help me stay focused. They keep me sane and sober in challenging times. They make me stay above the ground, embrace reality, and strive to be a better person every new day.

I want YOU to have them, as well, so you can sale through Life with confidence:

Imagine = Freedom

Imagining is seeing inside in your mind what is invisible outside of your mind. Allow your imagination to go wild and see how free your mind will become.

Dream = Hope

When we dream, we visualize our desires. Desires are the beginning of each creation. With each creation of ours, we hope to make a difference in the world and our lives.

Knowing and not doing = Not knowing

How many times we follow a class or listen to lessons, and we fail to take action? Can we really know without ever doing it? It is not important how much we know, but how much we do.

Giving up = Betraying yourself

When you give up, you eliminate forever the chance to reach your goals. This is the highest betrayal you can do to yourself. Then it is time to start loving yourself more.

Social Distancing = Awareness

Lately, we were asked to socialize differently than before. In that process, we became highly aware of our true needs, strengths, and values. Awareness is, thus, the foundation of self-understanding.

Retrospective = Personal Growth

Sincerely reflecting on your past and learning from it will make you grow beyond imagination.

Momentum = Perfection

Grabbing the Momentum is your best chance to reach Perfection in any aspect of your Life.

Socializing = Miracles

Socializing with others creates miracles you’ve always dreamt about.

Community = Atomic Power

You don’t go through Life alone. Friends, family, and social communities are giving you the power to excel. Choose your social environment carefully and boost your energy for Life.

Excuses = Death

Excuses result in no action and no growth. Those who don’t move and don’t grow, die.

Education = Catalyst

Education is the catalyst for knowledge. Applied knowledge leads to wisdom. Wisdom leads to Fulfilment.

Uncomfortable = Growth

Life starts outside of the comfort zone. Hence, being uncomfortable means that you are growing. Welcome to being a human being 🙂!

One moment can change a day,
One day can change a life and
One life can change the world.

~ Buddha

The ONE Change

WHAT is the one thing you want to change in your life?

Right now.

Just stop for a moment.

Close your eyes.


Now sync in and answer the same question.
“What is the one thing I want to change in my life?”

(… take your time to reply. Breathe again …)

Write your answer down, so you can see it not only with your mind, but also with your eyes. Feel it.

Then, I will be asking you:
WHY do you want to change that one thing in your life?

We all have things we want to change, update, or improve…
Change is a sign of growth. And we all want to grow, right?

Change can be painful. Can be uncomfortable. So you need to be convinced that you want that change. And this is the answer to the WHY you want to do it.
WHY is a trigger to make you think about how much you really want that change if you are frank to yourself.

What If You Don’t Change It?

Here are a few more questions to help you think:

(be brutally honest when answering those, so don’t rush them …)

#1. What is stopping you from making the change?

#2. What happens if you don’t make the change?

#3. Who you want to become?

What is the One Thing You Wanna Change Today?

Put Yourself in a Perspective

Now, I invite you to imagine yourself a year from now.

In 2021.

What story do you want to tell about today’s desire to change?

Will you still be dreaming of that change, but never dared to do it? Would you be safer, healthier, happier, wealthier, or wiser? What will be the cost of not making the change?

Or …
… Will you have made the step to change and are proud of your decision to move forward? Will you look back and be grateful that you took the decision to change and your life has majorly improved? Would you advise your present-self to make that change, so you can be in the future of your dreams?

And most importantly: WHO do you want to be in a year from now?

It all depends on your choice today.

I cannot teach anybody anything.
I can only make them think.

~ Socrates
Greek philosopher, credited as one of the founders of Western philosophy.

I‘ve been following Simon Sinek for some time. 

His idea of “Start with Why” has been a guiding light for me during the past decade. He has created a whole movement behind this concept and inspired people ever since. His book explains why a person must have a WHY for every notable action he or she takes, as it defines that person’s attitude towards him- or herself. When the personal WHY is cultivated and centered, one can devise a WHY for a family, for a community of people, for a giant business corporation, even for a whole country. That is what matters!

In the words of Simon, the WHY is related to “your purpose“, “your cause“, “your belief“. One can go even further and ask existential questions like,

Why do you exist?” or

Why does your organization exist?” 

Powerful questions inviting some serious retrospection, right?

Hey, did you notice that there are a lot of “YOU” in the sentences above?

It is because it all starts with YOU. Whatever you do – the way you think, dream, communicate, feel, act, and be – begins with you. All your thoughts and behavior culminate in the things you conceive, like purpose, cause, beliefs, relations, businesses, etc. 

The WHY often stems from your vision about something. You could have a vision only when you know yourself and what you want (desires, dreams, passions, hopes, cravings, expectations, etc. ). 

Your vision is the destination you want to get to from where you currently are. Reaching the vision is like operating a navigation system: the destination is your vision, your target goal. And if you know where you want to go, you also need to know where you are right now, so the navigation system can map your journey properly.

Should you wish to have clarity about your voyage, you need to know the starting point, the current state. That is to know yourself as a starting point of that vision – to know YOU before your WHY.

The WHY is explained through YOU

We are social creatures – we seek others with whom we communicate and interact. However, if you can’t reveal to others why you do the things you do, nobody would be able to understand you, relate emotionally with you, do business with you, vote for you, get inspired by you, or want to be a part of what you do.

So, you must be able to explain your WHY to others. Yet, before revealing it to another human being, you must be aware of it within yourself – via a dream, a passion, or a necessity.

Let us say, if I don’t have a dream to invest in myself, I would not be able to explain WHY I want to invest in myself because I would not have enough self-awareness even to formulate an explanation. If I don’t have a clear passion for horseback riding, I would not be able to describe WHY I want to ride horses. If I don’t feel the need to have a business, how can I define WHY having it?

Being self-aware is the first step towards self-knowledge

You can start the process of self-discovery by asking yourself why you are doing the things you currently do. This enables you to realize who you are and explain your own nature.

Asking yourself WHY questions, helps you find more about yourself through the compelling way of being honest, open, vulnerable, and humble with yourself. That allows you to discover more of your inner values – find means to get rid of those that don’t serve you any longer and cultivate new ones that make you excel.

The more WHYs you ask, the more precise your reasons become. You’ll notice that every next WHY goes deeper into your heart and soul, to reveal the real truth behind the reasons you give, sometimes to the point of emotional pain. Still, playing the WHY game is not easy – it requires you to be very honest with yourself. That is the key to find the true WHY(s) in your life.

Hence, finding the WHY requires you to know yourself, i.e., going through some serious self-discovery. It demands to look inwards. It requires working inwards so that YOU can find the reasons for your WHYs. In other words, you need to start with YOU before starting with the WHY.

The WHY changes as YOU evolve

Today’s WHY will be different from the future WHY. The WHY changes in time, as a result of an inevitable evolution – personal or corporate.

Apple has changed its corporate vision and mission statements over time, to reflect changes in the company from the time of Steve Jobs to the current leadership of Tim Cook. 

After a 74-year history, on MAR 9, 2011 Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) unveiled their new “Toyota Global Vision” for the future, which would serve not only to give direction to Toyota employees around the world but also to convey such direction to customers and the public at large.

In the lifecycle of every human being, there is usually a growth involved.

During the early years of our development, self-awareness is in its infancy – revolving around the basic human needs (love, shelter, significance, certainty, and variety). So, asking a kid WHY she does what she does, produces an honest answer, suitable for her age and development. Asking the same individual, the same WHY question, 20 years later, provides a different, probably more elaborate explanation. It is because the WHY depends on our development. The WHY is a direct expression of our inner state and maturity. So the WHY can change and depends on the change in the Self.

The self-awareness grows in time, bringing more clarity to the WHY you do the things you do. And more so, in time, the WHY changes due to new inspirations or circumstances

Here is my example of circumstance change: 

Before the current crisis, my WHY about “working”, was to save money for investment.
During the crisis, I worked to have bread on the table.
My WHY changed temporarily due to the circumstances.
But not my values.

And an example of a change through inspirations: 

A few years ago, I was not aware of my purpose. My WHY about living was materialistic.
Until I met people, who – with example and care – inspired me to open myself to others.
Today, my WHY is about being of high-service to others.
My WHY changed due to inspirations.
So did my values.

Whatever you do, your WHY grows together as YOU grow.
The WHY will never be bigger than YOU or grow beyond YOU because the WHY is a reflection of the YOU.

Finding more about YOU helps to find the WHY

When I refer to the process of self-knowing, I don’t mean that one needs to be a guru on self-help or a veteran motivational speaker.

Not at all!

I merely refer to the ability to know yourself. To allow yourself to know your inner world.

Hence, everybody can do it. And if you ask me, everybody should do it

The more one knows about the Self, the more the WHYs would make sense. When there are no answers to the WHYs, that person usually drifts through life, embracing the path of less resistance – existing without response-ability, being reactive to circumstances, hoping for miracles, blaming the whole universe for his failures. 

The WHY requires inner work. Working inwards produces the faith, the belief, the desire, and all that occurs afterward.

The work that needs to be done is within YOU first.

Start with YOU and then with WHY, because you are in the making of your own future and all the reasons behind. Only YOU can decide what your WHYs would be. 

Inspired by John Jackson, SFM Digital Experts Academy.

I can’t change the direction of the wind,
but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.

~ Jimmy Dean,
American country music singer, actor, and businessman

Today is All We Have!

The Only Day We Have is Today

7:30 AM in the morning. The day promises a heavy rain. The sun is trying to squeeze a couple of sunrays through the thick clouds and warm the ground before the sky starts pouring.  I am walking the dogs, thinking about the tasks of my new day.

Half-way I meet an elderly man – a rain-jacket, a cowboy hat, large boots, and 2 large dogs, stepping closely next to him. Passing in a safe distance with my four-legged friends, I salute him cheerfully:

Hi, there! How are you doing?

Having the best day of my life!” – he says and his eyes twinkle.

I stop in my tracks digesting the reply I just got. It’s not every day you hear such words by a stranger, and that early in the morning, right? I feel compelled to understand, so I engage:
What makes today a special day for you?

Do you have yesterday, now?” – he asked plainly.

NO“, – I reply almost mechanically to the obvious statement.

Do you have the day tomorrow guaranteed and promised?

NO“, – I repeat, this time taking more than a second to grasp the meaning of the question.

You see, the only thing we have is Today. So I am having the best day of my life.
– the man cheers and smiles.

We exchange a few more words and head onwards on our journeys, to get home before the upcoming rain.

I say to myself,

If ALL that we have is Today, then I gotta make Today count ! “.

3 Little Wisdoms to Make Today Count

Because Today is the only day we have, we choose to have this day and live it to the best of ourselves. We can choose to be responsible for the present moment.

But how? How can we do that when the mind is constantly jumping from past to future, from memories to desires? How can we catch the presence and be in the “now”?

I came to learn 3 wisdoms that help me fully live my day today:

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

Keep Your Mind Open for New Opportunities and Experiences

They say, ships are safe at harbor, but that is not what ships are made for.

Try today to keep some open-mindedness and “see” new things. Embrace the risk of moving forward. Take the responsibility to embrace the unknown, and move on. If we stay in the comfort zone, Life would hide from us many journeys we would not take. Hence, what if we decide not to be afraid, have faith, and find the lessons of today?

We can trust the journey, even if we don’t understand it. Yet!

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

What If You Put Your Whole Heart and Soul Into This Day?

What if? What if you believe that you live each moment today with passion and purpose? Because each and every moment is worth it in its own way.

Many people are trying to find passion. I learned the hard way that passion can’t really be found. Trying to find the passion is like assuming that passion is hiding behind a tree somewhat.
Passion is not something you find in life. It is something you do.

When you follow your passion, others are attracted to you and your possibilities! Why put a ceiling on what you can achieve, make, create, earn, build, and be when you can have a life of your choosing?

A purpose, for me, is about working each day to become a better version of oneself. It’s about cultivating and strengthening the values that are most important to an individual person – peace, love, creativity, excellence, kindness, consideration, and service. Life purpose, for me, is more about being and becoming, rather than doing.

So, imagine putting your whole heart TODAY in something you do, with passion. Imagine being TODAY the person you want, with a purpose! How complete your day would be?

Amsterdam lockdown, lockdown in The Netherlands, winter in Amsterdam, beauty, nature, ice, silence, mirror effect

Give Yourself Another Chance Today

May be you are too hard on yourself? Maybe you feel like you have not achieved enough today? 

What if you give your self another chance? And another?

Well, call that finding-yourself. Call it growth.

When times are tough, the key is to remind yourself to move forward. And then do that for each moment.
Until moments become minutes. Minutes become hours. Hours become days and months!
It isn’t easy, but in the process, you find yourselves stronger, wiser, possessing abilities you don’t know you had.

When everything seems broken, it is easy to find plenty of things to fix. As far as we know, the times of great adversity are the times of great opportunities. When there are problems in every direction, there is also a value awaiting to be created.

When everything is easy, we get lazy, but when things are tough, we get resourceful. So, choose to persevere. Make the choice to persist without exception. Perform tiny fixes today and do that one day at a time.

Have you made that decision? Resolve to do so and make today your best day ever!

We see the world not as it is, but as we are –
or, as we are conditioned to see it.

~ Stephen R. Covey

Giving Meaning to Things

Did you know that giving meaning to things is a matter of choice?

Every one of us sees the surrounding reality individually, through lenses of subjectiveness, judgment, and a mental state. Even for the same person, the same event might have a different meaning once you change the circumstances.

Often the meaning we give is the one that resonates in our heart – for good or for bad.

Let me take the current economic crisis, as an example – an event beyond my control and influence. An event of such magnitude and force, that it affects the planet we live in. What meaning shall I give it?

I could decide to follow the meaning given by the main-stream media and perceive this event as dramatic, devastating, and life-taking. That meaning hurts me and makes me suffer. The outcome of this is me being stressed, anxious, and fearful. A reaction could be to resort to melancholia, alcohol, or binge-watching to numb the misery.

I could also decide to give another meaning to this event, and see it as a pivotal opportunity to use the precious time of the lock-down. I could read inspirational literature, work on my relationships, and start learning to play the piano. This time the meaning makes me challenged and emotionality uplifted. The outcome is me being focused, centered, and growing.

And there could be a myriad of nuances of other meanings I could give to the same event.

But how to choose which one hurts and which one pleases?

How To Give Meaning In Order to Win

Whatever meaning you give to the “things” around you will determine your outcome and how quickly you bounce back. Especially when it comes to events and circumstances, which are outside of your control.

This meaning is really important and we can choose it at any given moment. We can learn how to choose a different meaning – one that serves us and make our perception of life an enjoyable endeavor.

The best way you find out whether a certain meaning is serving you or not is to analyze how you feel.

If you feel contracted and moody, abandon that meaning at once. Find another one.
If you feel expanded and happy, keep the meaning, nourish and savor it.

Analyzing your feelings is the step towards self-awareness. In times of struggle, pain, and fear, try to give the mental monsters a positive meaning. The one that becomes nutrient for your soul; a meaning that brings peace and joy.

This way – I believe, – you can get through anything.

Giving Meaning is a Powerful Choice

The Struggle With the Inner Me

I choose to see the light today. Even though my inner voice shouts at me that I see darkness; that I am at a dead-end of a tunnel.

I choose to see colors. Even though my inner voice tells me that everything today is black and  white .

I choose to make a choice when my inner voice repeats that I have no choice today, that it all depends on luck or someone else. 

I choose to fight that inner voice; even though, at times, it looks like a monstrous GIANT to me.

I choose to silence this inner voice and follow my heart.

We Can Choose to See the Light

If I can choose, so can you. Choose to see the light, regardless of what your inner voice tells you. 

From the moment you open your eyes, welcome the light of the new day. If you ever doubt that there is light, look at the reflection of the light in every object around you – there is an abundance of light everywhere. It takes only a tiny decision to see it and invite it in your heart.
Then decide to keep it inside forever.

Good news: the days are getting longer and longer in the northern hemisphere. So, there is more light to be received and more to be embraced in your life. 

Choose to be a light-barer today.