Humor is the lifebelt on the stream of life (Wilhelm Raabe)

Photo: Pixabay

Maybe you don’t feel like laughing at the moment.
I say: now more than ever!


“If I had no sense of humour, I would have committed suicide long ago.”
Mahatma Ghandi

Humour and the laughter that comes with it relaxes on all levels – mentally, physically and emotionally.
Humour helps us to gain distance and to generate a more relaxed attitude – towards ourselves, a situation or others.
And it is precisely this serenity that we need in deadlocked situations in order to be able to recognise or generate solutions. In this way, humour promotes our mental agility – the ability to see situations from different perspectives – in a playful and enjoyable way.

Not taking ourselves so seriously also promotes empathy and gentleness – also towards other people. Plus it increases our tolerance towards mistakes and thus our courage, as we are less afraid of “making fools of ourselves”.

Laughter itself improves lung function, provides the brain with an oxygen shower, relaxes the muscles and massages the internal organs. The immune defence increases, stress hormones are reduced and happiness hormones are released. So if you laugh regularly, you are doing a lot for your health.

And the best thing about it: laughter is contagious! So if you go through life with a sense of humour, you are automatically doing something good.
Watch this:

Laughing Tram Man – Happiness with Rituals

What makes you laugh?
When was the last time you laughed at yourself?

Never be “too grown up” to laugh at yourself!

Spread the laugh!

Birgit

PS: The mask can’t stop us! Genuine laughter has sound and finds expression in our eyes!

Enjoy the Harvest

Foto: Pixabay

When was the last time you enjoyed the harvest?
And I don’t mean the strawberries you picked yourself…

When was the last time you paused to not only rejoice in your successes but also to consciously enjoy the feeling? (Yes, you are allowed to be happy!)

How often do we rush straight on? Well-known “mental slave driver sentences” usually start with “but” and continue with …
“That’s not a success, it’s a given!”
“That can be done even better”
“I’d better not rejoice too soon” (the killer phrase! Satisfaction impossible!) or
“No time for sentimentality, there’s too much else waiting on the list”.

But especially after a longer phase of stress, for example when you have put a lot of energy into something – and it is finally finished – the phase of relaxation is super important.
And if you have successfully completed something after a challenging period, you can combine this relaxation phase wonderfully with the conscious perception and enjoyment of the feeling that arises when your success bears fruit. Yes, you deserve the break! – Five minutes, an hour, half a day, maybe even a whole day or more.
When we become aware of our successes and appreciate them, our sense of self-efficacy and control increases and we practice self-care – all important factors in our well-being.
So enjoying the harvest not only ensures that we recover – but we also reward ourselves for our efforts at the same time.

What are successes?
In the end, whatever you define as such. However, experience shows that we are quite strict with ourselves – so also appreciate the little things, such as the exercise session you got up to (enjoy the good conscience and relieved feeling afterwards), the healthy meal you prepared for yourself with love (take the time to eat and feel how it positive it is for your body) or the chores you set out to do and completed.
Of course, this also includes bigger projects you worked on for a longer time or things you did for other people.
I’m sure you also have a list of several items every day.

When and how to pause?
A daily review in the evening has proven to be very useful.
In any case, you should bite into the apple of your success when it falls into your hands – i.e. whenever you are happy that something has worked out or that your work “pays off” – regardless of whether this happens in material or immaterial currency 😉

What are you proud of today?

This is to your accomplishments!

Be kind to yourself and take care,

Birgit

Oh and PS – regarding the killer sentence above in the text: yes, it will pass – successful phases will always be followed by lean periods. But that is not an argument for not enjoying the high phases! On the contrary – what a pity it would be if we missed the chance to take the momentum from the wave of success with us in order to get through the lean periods better? That’s like not wanting to eat any more because you’ll get hungry again anyway.

12 + 3 Tips for a Good Night’s Rest

Photo: Pixabay

Sleep is like breathing. Both functions are vital for us, both are there as a matter of course (although many a good, restful sleep has been lost in the stress). As the saying goes, “it deprived me of sleep”) – and both are often underestimated in their effect on our well-being and health.
Sleep in particular helps our mind to process what we have experienced, to “store” knowledge and to create new connections. And for our body it is essential for regeneration.

How well do you listen to your body’s signals? When you are tired and have the chance, do you take a nap? Or go to bed earlier? Or do you sometimes ignore tiredness because you want to do that one more thing? Do you know the phenomenon of craving sweets when you get tired? Do you reach for the chocolate or the bed?

It’s clear that sleep and stress are connected. If we have too much stress and don’t manage to switch off or get away from it, we often have trouble sleeping. (For example, I have the feeling that the first thing I wake up in the morning is my head. Eyes open and bam, I have the To Do list in my head. I like to say “my processor is already running before I have booted up my body”). Less sleep, on the other hand, has a negative effect on our stress tolerance – we lose our composure more quickly.

But what can I do to break this cycle? Let’s answer a few basic questions:

What are the consequences of too little sleep?

  • Poorer brain capacity – expressed in less ability to concentrate and less creativity
  • Faster ageing process
  • Weight gain because of increased appetite (malaise and lack of energy caused by too little sleep is compensated for by increased appetite; this is promoted by the hormone ghrelin, which is responsible for our feeling of hunger)
  • Deterioration of blood sugar levels and risk of high blood pressure
  • Weakened immune system – more frequent illnesses
  • States of exhaustion
  • Increased risk of burnout
  • How much sleep do we need?

Scientific studies generally speak of 7-8 hours. It has also been proven that less than six hours of sleep per night can lead to exhaustion in the long run. The best way to find out how much sleep you need is to take a few days off or go on holiday. Follow your body’s signals and go to bed when you get tired. Make sure you have created the conditions for a good night’s sleep (see below) and don’t set an alarm. Observe when you wake up on your own the next day and feel ready to get up. After a few days you will notice that it is always a similar number of hours – your personal sleep need.

What contributes to good sleep?

How well you sleep depends on many different factors, of course, and is determined throughout the day. Basically, a healthy lifestyle (exercise, healthy food, plenty to drink and breaks throughout the day) is very beneficial. You can also pay attention to the following:

  1. Breaks: Allow yourself breaks throughout the day, for example between different blocks of tasks.
  2. Exercise: This can range from a walk to yoga or stretching sessions to a hearty exercise session. Make sure, however, that there are a few hours between the end of your exercise session and bedtime.
  3. Fresh air: Do you remember your childhood days? Outdoors all day and tired as hell in the evening? Fresh air makes you tired – so make sure you get some fresh air outdoors at least once a day for about 30 minutes.
  4. Bedroom climate: Air out the room before you go to bed or sleep with the window open; make sure the room temperature is between 16 and 18 degrees Celsius and darken the room well.
  5. Good mattress: How old is your mattress? Get advice and buy a mattress that suits your needs. A good investment!
  6. Switch off: After the thriller or the last activity on the screen, there should be some time to “switch off”. Maybe you even establish a …
  7. “Calm down ritual”: Make yourself a cup of tea and let the day pass in review on the couch; perhaps you would also like to take a warm bath or a hot shower and then snuggle up in a blanket? Or write down what you are grateful for and what your insights of the day were…. whatever is appropriate for you to end the day on.
  8. Natural sleep aids: The scent of lavender in the bedroom or a calming tea often work wonders! Perhaps there is also something you know makes you sleepy? (For example, I regularly fall asleep reading books.
  9. Well digested: Make sure you eat light meals in the evening (few carbohydrates, no salads or raw vegetables) and that there are about 3 hours between your last meal and bedtime.
  10. Counting sheep: When you are lying awake in bed, count your breaths instead of sheep or try autogenic training or a body scan.
  11. Flashes of inspiration: And if thoughts or ideas still keep you awake, it’s best to put a notepad next to your bed. Writing down what goes through your mind calms your mind and empties your “working memory”.
  12. Airplane mode: It is best not to take your mobile phone into the bedroom at all. If it is unavoidable, switch it to flight mode. This makes it easier to resist the temptation to check and read messages. Also, make sure you have activated the blue light filter on your phone screen.

And finally, a few tips for napping during the day:

A so-called “power nap” should not last longer than 20-30 minutes – that is, it should end before you fall into a deep sleep. You can achieve this in different ways:

  1. Espresso: Drink an espresso before lying down for a power nap. This usually takes effect within 20-30 minutes and should then wake you up.
  2. Key ring: Sit down in an armchair to take a nap, let one of your hands hang over the backrest and take a bunch of keys in this hand. As soon as you go into deep sleep, your hand will open, the bunch of keys will fall to the floor and you will be awake.
  3. Alarm clock: also works, of course.

Here’s to a good night’s sleep and energized days!

Sleep well,

Birgit

3 things I’ve learned about listening to others talk about their emotions

Photo: Pixabay

Sometimes it is not easy for us to talk about our own feelings. Perhaps because we are missing clarity about what is “bothering us”, perhaps because we are afraid of showing vulnerablility. But when we finally open up, we wish for a communication partner with whom we feel in good hands.
Are you such a partnter?
The following article was penned by my dear friend and business partner Fernando Cuevas, and beautifully describes the not-so-helpful patterns we sometimes fall into in conversations where someone opens up on how he or she is doing.
Do you recognise yourself?

Author: Fernando Cuevas

1.    Don’t assume they’re asking for advice – The most common mistake I have fallen victim to (in more ways than one) is going into ‘troubleshoot mode” and started a ping-pong match where one serves up a list of possible solutions, and the other one responds with objections of why they wouldn’t work. As a rule of thumb, my suggestion is that unless you hear a statement that clearly resembles something like “What would you do in my situation?” resist the temptation to give advice and focus on validating their emotions and listening to them. (See learning #3) Once you understand that, regardless of your relationship to the other person, your role is not to fix the problem or get rid of the emotions, but only to show your empathy and accompany them through the process, having conversations about emotions might not feel like such a daunting task after all.

2.    Don’t make it about you – We all experience the same events and the same losses in many different ways, so assuming that what helped us will help others or that what somebody is describing is comparable to our experience is quite risky. So, if you catch yourself saying things like “When this happened to me in 1988…”, “That is exactly how I felt when I thought I had lost my wedding ring” or “Yes, I also feel sad, let me tell you about a nightmare I had about it…” (Comical as they might sound, I have heard versions of these “autobiographical responses”, as Dr. Covey calls them, more times than you would think) Don’t lose focus, keep the conversation around them and their emotions.

3.    Validate their emotions – Give people space to feel and verbalize their emotions without interrupting them. Pay attention to your words and your non-verbal language to ensure you’re creating a safe space for them: Don’t tell people not to worry, or how good they have it and how grateful they should be for what they have or promise that everything will be fine- Listen to them and make your best effort not to judge them. Most times staying silent as you listen attentively or rephrasing what they have told are your best options. Save the pep talk for your next conversation.

What have you learned recently about listening to others talk about their emotions?

About Fernando Cuevas

Fernando Cuevas

Fernando is a Human Resources and Learning consultant with more than 20 years of business experience. Recently he served as the Sr Director of Learning and Development for Europe, Middle East and Africa for Marriott Hotels.

He is an Industrial/Organizational Psychologist and experienced coach, and has facilitated leadership and strategic workshops and presented in conferences in Latin America, Europe, Middle East & Asia.​

Fernando’s greatest passion is helping teams through team development interventions like team building and discovery experiences and facilitating learning that make a lasting impact.

LinkedIn | Better360

Relax in Stereo

Photo: Pixabay

The last articles where mainly about topics related to the development of our personality. So I think it’s time for some relaxation now.

Below this blog article (browser view) you will find a link to a Spotify playlist with so-called EMDR music.
EMDR stands for “Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing”. This technique was originally developed for psychotherapy, but is also excellent servant for deep relaxation.
It is based on the phenomenon that during sleep in the REM phase (Rapid Eye Movement), we store experiences, events and the associated emotions in our “file system in the brain” and thus process them. In the case of particularly intense or touchung negative experiences, this sometimes doesn’t work – usually because our subconscious mind is overwhelmed or has no reference as to where this experience can best be sorted. Hence it continues to haunt us, can block us or – when we encounter a similar situation again – make us overreact (trigger).

EMDR makes use of the phenomenon of REM sleep, simulating the stimulation of the two hemispheres of the brain as it happens during the night, through various methods in the waking state. In this way we can achieve deep relaxation and let go of stress.
In the so-called WingWave® Coaching, this stimulation is achieved by inducing rapid eye movements; however, appropriate music can also be used for this purpose. And this is what the playlist is for.

When I listened to this music for the first time, I was somehow irritated. The sound travels in waves from the left ear to the right ear and back again. That’s why it’s important for the effectiveness that you wear headphones.
At first my mind found it so strange that it had trouble letting go. But when I gradually managed to get into it, I literally immersed myself. Now I use the music to meditate on days when my mental chatterbox is particularly talkative 😉 ‘
Most of the time it works quite well.
Maybe it’s something for you too?

Grab your headphones, find a quiet spot and let your subconscious ride the acoustic wave.

If your mind needs more information about WingWave® and EMDR before it can let go with confidence, I have also listed a few more links below this article.

Have a relaxing Sunday!

Birgit

Wingwave Musik

What is wingwave? | wingwave.com

EMDR coaching music helps to reduce stress & deeply relax (remstim.com)

11 Tips to “Check-Out”

Photo: Pixabay

“You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”

For sure, the Eagles meant something different with these lines in the song “Hotel California” – but when I heard them the other day while jogging, I spontaneously thought, “Yeah, that’s what life feels like right now.”
Aren’t we all somehow “caught” in a situation from which we can’t escape? We have to endure, persevere, keep going. This requires energy, confidence, a healthy body and emotional balance.

And the best way to strengthen these resources is to realize that – even if we have to stay in a situation – we can “checkout” at any time – in other words, there are always opportunities to take small time-outs, to unplug. Especially when things get too much for us, some kind of checkout is particularly important.
How often do we get stuck in everyday situations – be it the traffic jam on the highway, the wait at the doctor’s or the line at the checkout at the supermarket. Instead of struggling through it, it often helps to press the pause button for a moment. And sometimes the emerging, relaxed attitude leads to options opening up that ease the situation.

That’s why I would like to invite you to include “checkouts” in your life in order to come to rest – even if it’s only for a short time – to recharge your batteries and stay calm and healthy.

Basically, it is already a checkout if you consciously change your activities. If you sit a lot, stand up. If you look at the screen a lot, let your eyes wander into the distance. If you have ti talk a lot, allow yourself times of silence. If you work inside a lot, go outside, etc.

The following checkouts do not take much of your time, but they are very effective. And if you prefer to do them in a quiet place, here’s a tip I often get ridiculed for: a perfect escape is the toilet.

“Check Out any time your like” – 11 Tips

1. 3 times the Breath –
Stop whatever you are doing now and close your eyes. Bring your attention to your shoulders. On the next exhale, drop your shoulders and consciously let all tension leave your body. Place one hand on your heart and the other on your belly and repeat the following breathing rhythm three times:
Breathe in consciously and for a long time.
Hold the breath for a moment.
Exhale completely.
Be aware of the “still point” between exhalation and the next inhalation – then inhale again.

2. Focus Play
Look up and choose an object in the distance to focus on.
Consciously notice that all impressions in the surroundings of this object become blurred by this focus.
Now choose another object that lies in the same line of sight, but is closer to you.
Now direct your eyes and focus on this object and notice how again everything that seemed sharp becomes blurred.
Switch your focus between these two objects 3-5 times.

3. “We think too much and dance too little”
Put on your favorite music and go wild dancing.
Level up: loudly sing along 😉

4. 5-4-3-2-1 Method
Stop what you are doing and thinking. Close your eyes for a moment and imagine a stop sign.
Open your eyes again and
List 5 things you are seeing right now.
Then turn your attention to sounds and count 5 things you are hearing.
Afterwards, focus on 5 things you feel and name them.
Next, notice 5 things you smell and name them.
Start over and practice 4 more rounds: 4 things you see, 4 you hear and 4 you feel, 4 you smell. 3 that you see, 3 that you hear, 3 that you feel, 3 that you smell, etc.

5. Beginners Mind
Perform the next activity as if you were doing it for the first time. Reduce the speed of execution and look at everything with curiosity and fascination.

6. Fresh Breeze
Get up, open the window.
Stand by the window and just look into the distance for a minute.
Level up: Take a short walk (no matter what the weather!) and combine it with checkout #4, #8 and #9.

7. Upside Down
Consciously perform the next activity “the other way around”, e.g.
Operate the mouse on your computer with the other hand.
Write with the other hand.
Walk a few steps backwards.
Intentionally put on two different colored socks etc.

8. Digital Detox
You probably know this one: go offline for an evening – or for an hour to start with. No PC, no tablet, no cell phone, no radio, no TV – just “switch off”.

9. Grounded
Take off your shoes and walk barefoot for a while –
On the carpet, the floor inside and outside.
Consciously notice how the ground feels under your feet.

10. Get Tense – to Relax
Stop what you are doing.
Take one deep breath.
Now tense all the muscles in your body at once:
– Inhale deeply to tighten your chest
– Strongly form fists with your hands
– Pull your shoulders up and push them backwards
– Tense your abdomen by pressing it toward your spine
– Tense your jaw muscles
– Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth
– Tense your forehead
– Squint your eyes
– Hold the tension for 5-7 seconds
– Let go and enjoy the relaxation!

11. RAK’n’Roll
RAK stands for “Random Acts of Kindness” – small gestures of generosity. Do something kind for someone – spend a smile, help carrying bags, hold the door open, pay the coffee to go for the person behind you in line, etc.

In addition to these “express checkouts,” it’s a good idea to regularly schedule longer time-outs into your daily routine that benefit your well-being:
– Cook healthy meals and eat with pleasure and awareness.
– Exercise and sport units
– Power naps
– Walks in the fresh air …

And if you need a song to check out, here’s the song to the article:

Take Care,

Birgit

Protective Posture of the Heart

Photo: Pixabay

The idea for this blog article actually came to me during my morning yoga session.
It made me realise that our body sometimes adopts a protective posture to avoid pain.
This can happen after an injury, for example, or also when we experience pain during certain movements due to immobility, overstraining or inflammation.
Temporarily, this protective posture can be helpful, necessary or consciously wanted to enable relief and healing. In the case of major injuries, we are even prescribed this protective posture if, for example, joints, tendons or bones are temporarily immobilised by a plaster cast, orthosis or similar.

Normally, however, the protective posture happens unconsciously and and build ups continuously. Usually, we only become aware of it when we experience pain in another part of the body, because an imbalance has been created by the permanent protective posture, which has to be compensated for by an incorrect posture. And so the imbalance increases while our flexibility decreases.

And then I thought: isn’t it the same with emotions?
Don’t we also tend to avoid certain situations, people or events (or keep them at bay by being particularly tough) if our last experience was bad or painful?
For example, if you gave a talk in front of many people and had a total blackout, would you immediately go back on stage?
If you had a fall (from a horse, bicycle, motorbike, while skiing ….), would you get back on immediately?
If you were hurt in your last relationship, can you start again with confidence and trust in the new one?

Pain happens – no matter whether it is caused by physical or emotional injuries. And yes, relief needs a certain amount of time which helps to process (not surpress or block). Take this time! But then it is important not to remain in this posture, but to get moving again as quickly as possible and slowly rebuild flexibility – it’s the same with emotions as it is with muscles. Because if we maintain the protective posture, it may feel safe at first – but in the long run it has unpleasant consequences:

  1. Emotional imbalance: To avoid one feeling, we develop another one stronger, such as hardness to avoid sadness.
  2. Lack of flexibility: We unlearn how to deal with certain emotions – and suffer all the more when we encounter them again. I.e. there is even a
  3. Greater risk of injury.
  4. Pain in other areas: We may succeed in avoiding some injuries and pain. However, our isolation also prevents beautiful experiences, joy and liveliness – and makes us lonely in the long run.

And just like the physical recovery, the emotional recovery also feels uncertain and “shaky” in the beginning. But hold on, it will settle with time! This is the only way to stay lithely so that you can unfold your full potential and experience the complete “range of motion” of life and emotions.

Where have you fallen into a protective posture emotionally?
How could you regain flexibility?

And as I am writing this — doesn’t it all somehow apply to our thoughts and perspectives, too?

So – time for some stretching exercises – for the body, the mind and the heart – and then off into life!

Take Care!

Birgit

Are you sober?

Photo: Pixabay


I’m not asking this because it’s mulled wine time. You can have it 😉
But when I decided to abstain from alcohol in November, I realized that we numb our bodies with all kinds of things – sometimes quite unconsciously.
Often we only notice it when we “sober up” in the corresponding area – that is, when we practice abstinence for a while. If we consume something regularly, we get used to it very quickly – and lose the feeling for the right measure. Anyone who has ever used the same perfume or aftershave for a longer period of time will be familiar with this: after a while, you get the feeling that the scent fades much faster. But the truth is that we perceive it less and less because our nose has already become accustomed to it. And when things go badly (for our fellow human beings ;-)) we continuously increase the amount until we smell it again.

“Anesthesia” can set in when we need more and more of something that boosts our reward system in the brain to achieve the desired feeling of happiness.
Or when we continuously distract ourselves to hide away from feeling.

Here is a small selection of common “anesthetics”:

  • Alcohol (to relax and unwind)
  • Sugar (happiness kick)
  • Caffeine (energy kick)
  • Food (do you eat for hunger or appetite?)
  • Work (“one more …. If I first… then …”)
  • Thoughts (brooding)
  • Social media / cell phone (the like kick, satisfying curiosity)
  • Television
  • Sports (“relief kick” upon completion)
  • Busyness (always having something to do, even if it’s not actually useful or necessary; no breaks)
  • Shopping (rewarding myself)
  • News (“excitement kick”)

You can find out if you are still enjoying and consuming at a normal level or are already in numbing mode by answering these questions:

Can you enjoy it without immediately wanting more?

Do you consume consciously or casually? (e.g. messages in the cell phone or the bag of chips).

Do you feel after a certain amount a physical or emotional “enough” (saturation)?

Are you aware of how often and how much you consume?

Are you aware in which situations you reach for the respective “narcotic” and which craving you actually want to satisfy with it?

Do you sometimes consume so much of it that you only notice the “overdose” when you are no longer feeling well?

Can you do without it for a certain period of time without any problems? (Answer yes only after you have tried it – you will be surprised …).

Maybe you would like to start an experiment during the next days and weeks and do without one of your favorite “narcotics”?
It is definitely worth it! If you succeed, you will:

  • gain exciting insights about yourself
  • regain a sense of control
  • become more mindful and aware of your feelings
  • be more in touch with your body and its signals again
  • regain the feeling for the right (healthy) measure
  • use this awareness to better control what is good for you
  • taste, feel and perceive the respective “remedy” more intensively after the renunciation
  • feel clearer, stronger and more alive!

And: when you are in contact with yourself again, you can apply this conscious mindfulness to other areas.

How does that sound?

Here’s to more clarity and liveliness!

Birgit

7 Steps to Strengthen your Resilience-Muscle

Photo: Pixabay

The other day I put on my running shoes and started running – although it rained a little.
While on track the rain got heavier and the wind blew from the front.
And although the water ran down my face, something happened to me during this run and I finally had to smile. I noticed how I was running out of my comfort zone and – that I enjoyed it. I felt alive, pure, present in the moment.

Yes, it’s about liveliness. It’s about standing the rain – or the wind. To get connected with your feelings, with the present moment.
And it’s about how exactly this can increase your resilience.

Admittedly, if we compare this year with a general weather situation, you could say that we have been in the rain quite a bit so far and any forecast was and is about as reliable as the weather report 😉
For such a situation there is no suitable exercise.
But it is a bit like marathon training. It also happens in small, intensive run segments, but all of them are shorter than 43 km.

How we cope with and deal with uncomfortable situations depends on the extent of which we are used to them. You won’t gain resistance and stamina if you take it easy or always choose the path of least resistance.

Our resilience is like a muscle for endurance. It can be trained – and it is advisable to do so continuously in order to be strong enough when it counts.

The training steps for your resilience muscle are always the same – whether voluntary or involuntary:

1. Awareness – You notice that something is stressing you or is triggering unpleasant thoughts and feelings in you. You discover a trigger and at the same time an area where you need more resilience. Let’s stay with my run. As the rain increased and I got wetter and wetter, I thought “Oh no, no!” I also noticed how I increased my pace.

2. Acceptance – Accepting means to accept the insight on your trigger. “Ok, I’m not used to walking in the rain” or “I don’t like walking with wet feet”.

3. Endurance – There is no way around it – only right through it. Especially in situations that we cannot choose, the simple and moving motto now is: “Face it, stand it, endure it.”

4. Adapting – Adapting can help with endurance and can affect both our behaviour and our thoughts. Can you do something different in an unpleasant situation to make it easier for you? Which thoughts would be helpful now? What should you focus on to make you feel better? “One step at a time – just keep going! – or “Haha, others go to the beautician and have their skin moistened so that it looks fresher. I have this included :-).” or “Oh, what am I looking forward to a warm shower and a tea afterwards.”

5. Recovery – Without question – enduring and adapting drains energy. Therefore it is important to allow yourself a phase of regeneration after such a strain. Your resilience muscle grows during the rest phase – just like any other muscle. I really enjoyed a long shower and put on some nice music for tea afterwards.

6. Learning – Reflection phase when the situation is over. How hard did you find it to bear? Which adaptation strategies worked particularly well? What can you learn from this for the next time? Changing my thoughts helped me a lot – and even brought a smile to my lips (I was thinking about it with the beautician ;-)) Learning: Running in the rain is cool and I can do it.

7. Adjusting – Put your insights into practice. What will you do (differently) next time? I will go running in the rain again and have bought a rain jacket. I am looking forward to the awesome feeling again!

It was especially exciting for me that I benefited in two ways just by changing my mindset in the situation: I felt alive and happy – and I trained my endurance and also made myself independent of the weather in my running schedule in the future.

When was the last time you trained yourself in accepting and enduring?
When did you voluntarily choose the more unpleasant option?
Or when did you consciously stay in an unpleasant situation and make it your teacher?

How and where could you consciously stand “in the rain” in the coming week to train your resilience muscle?

Leave the umbrella at home and dive into life!

Birgit

Nothing

Photo: Pixabay

Today I would like to invite you to do something that is super important for your personal development: nothing!
Yes, you read correctly! Growth does not take place during periods of stress – but during the following periods of rest.
This is not only the case in sports, where muscle growth is only enabled by training breaks. The principle can also be found in other areas:

It is easier to find solutions if we make ourselves aware of the challenge – and then let go (it’s for a reason that brilliant ideas rarely show up if we ponder hard enough, but rather in moments when we no longer think about the problem).

We process emotions in our sleep, e.g. by dreaming (by the way – everyone is dreaming – about it – even if not everyone can remember).

We learning experiences only stick when we allow the mind to rest in order to sort them correctly in our synaptic library.

Now, before you take it literally and switch off, there is one more thing that is important: Your emotional mindset. Your “lazy day” will only have a positive effect if you really allow yourself to have it and give yourself an okay – without a guilty conscience!

So – go ahead and treat yourself!
(And in case you need it: I hereby officially give you permission to do so ;-))

Enjoy the nothing,

Birgit