I’ve recently discovered that there’s a new epidemic affecting a big part of the world’s population. Although it’s been apparent since ancient times, it is now spreading faster than ever. What’s more concerning is the fact that it’s extremely contagious, and you can actually catch it in many different ways, whether you are in the vicinity of somebody who has it or just know somebody with it. We all have a level of vulnerability towards it, but some people just choose to feed it into becoming part of their everyday life. It’s called COMPLAINING. I’m sure you’ve all heard of it, in fact I’m 100% certain you have been or are currently suffering from it. Jokes aside, complaining is seriously very similar to a disease. It can affect the way you think, your physical abilities, your emotional stability, it can even bring upon other more serious illnesses if you continue living with the negative vibes.
The problem with complaining is that the more you do it, the more it starts to affect you.
Let’s get something straight here; life is certainly not always peachy, but there is always a way to make it so. It baffles me that so many people out there, who have so much going on for them, choose to complain. They moan about the amount of hours they put into their work; they bitch about others’ successes and complain about their own failures; they devalue who they are by continuously choosing to associate everything they talk about with some form of negative connotation. They live in a victimized system, where they develop a “Poor me” mentality, which they believe the more they do, the more they will receive; and that they will, but it’s not going to be the good stuff.
There’s 3 important things you need to know about it:
Nobody actually cares about your complaining
If you have somebody who listens to your moaning, first of all you need to be grateful. Because trust me, nobody wants to actually hear “poor me, my life is this, why can’t I have that instead”. The reason for this is that most people have their own complaints to deal with and also, the way they perceive what you are saying is almost always a little bit different to what you actually mean. Whilst receiving comfort in times of need is nice, encouraging your complaining is not. There is a sad side to this and that is that often people feel much better about themselves when you complain about something. Learn to switch from being a victim, to becoming a warrior. Channel your inner Beyonce if need be and play “Who runs the world” on repeat, go for a run and let it out that way, watch a funny comedy, read a book, write your thoughts down, but never put it out there in a vocal manner. You will never be able to grow or get better if you continue doing it. Also, the more you do it around others, the more it affects them. You have no right to impose such behaviours onto them, just as they shouldn't do so with you.
If you want something, stop complaining and start doing it
It amuses me slightly when people complain about having to do something in order to get what they want. Really, well of course you do! Nothing in life is handed to us on a silver platter nor it should be. If things would be that easy to get, there wouldn’t be great innovators out there and successful entrepreneurs who are living proof that anything is possible. All great ideas come from moments of clarity after stormy days. Most successful people have seen the darkness so far down the tunnel that they reached a whole different level of light that inspired them. If you want to achieve, to accomplish, to be great, YOU HAVE TO WANT TO GET THEM first. If the desire is there, the results will come. Because if you truly want something, you wont have time to complain about it. Every moment will spent wisely on how you can get closer to your goal. Complaining is simply not an option.
Accept what is but do something about it
Seeking acceptance from others has somehow become more important than accepting yourself the way you are. Too many people focus on what others think of them, instead of looking inwardly. The reason for this is very clear and that is because when you look inward, you’ll discover things about yourself you may not like. This is hard to take on, and it takes hard work to face your own skeletons. But trust me, you are the only validation you need. And if you only knew how important this is, you would not even need to complain about anything. When you become at peace with who you are and work on yourself towards the person you want to become, you’ll start living differently. You will begin to take control of your life, which pushes you outside of the victim role, and complaining will no longer be necessary.
It’s not easy to change bad habits and complaining certainly is one of the worst. But know that with time invested in yourself, and doing the things you are good at and you love, complaining will go away. Because the more you start living with authenticity and take control of your own life, doors will start opening for you. Don’t settle for average when you could be great.
I’m sure we’ve all heard the saying “When the going gets tough, the tough get going”. But do you really need to be tough in order to handle challenging situations? What does it even mean to be tough anyways? Do you have to be physically strong, mentally composed, push your emotions aside? Looking for a more instilled definition, oxforddictionaries.com defines tough as “strong enough to withstand adverse conditions or rough handling”. And whilst this is exactly an ideal characteristic we all want to have, it is more important to look at the process of acquiring this “strength” instead of making it a goal. You must give it a meaning for yourself, in which the way you react to circumstances is an authentic response.
Being able to withstand difficult or challenging situations is more about being able to understand the situation and why it’s challenging for you. Just like beauty is a perception, so are challenging situations. The way you look at something is exactly how it’s going to manifest itself to you. And how you respond to it, is exactly how you should in that moment in time. Every setback is a lesson, and the more you make the same mistake, the more the setbacks will come back. Striving to be “tough” is like saying I want to be a millionaire. Are you going to work hard, be persistent and put passion into the process to acquire that kind of wealth? Or will you continue buying lotto tickets, pretending that one day you will become a millionaire? And even if you win lotto, will that money make you happy? I’m sure your initial response will be yes, but think about what you’ll do with that money. Is it really something that will change your life emotionally, physically and spiritually? Will it help you grow as a person? Honestly, you might think I’m crazy for saying this but I think after a while, you will fall into complete boredom and loss, because at the end of the day, it is more about how you acquired that wealth instead of the sum itself. And when you put your heart and soul into that process, money will no longer be your ultimate objective, which is the reason why entrepreneurs and successful people have businesses that are sustainable. Only those who look for true meaning in their lives and who want to live with purpose will understand this.
I have met incredibly sensitive people, who are emotional and delicate but they can handle whatever life throws at them. Would you say they are tough? Only when you are able to master your emotions and to feel truthfully, you’ll be able to push through anything that comes your way. When you are one with your rational and emotional side, then you’ll find the completion that sets you up for freedom. For when you feel freely, and think independently, your true colors shine. Never chase money in the hopes of pursuing your full potential. Materialistic assets bring instant happiness, a buzz that yes is very beneficial at the time, but soon enough you’ll reach a period of slight confusion; because although money can buy you many things, it can never buy your soul and what you are here for.
Instead of focusing on becoming tough, spend your time getting to know yourself more. The more you do this, the more equipped you will become to face any battles that come your way. When you are your own best friend and are honest with yourself, you’ll find what you are looking for even in the most adverse circumstances.
Let’s pretend you had a magic wand that if you shake, it will show you what the rest of your life will look like. Would you give it a go or would you throw away the stick and just go with it?
I believe there are two kinds of people in this world: people who make things happen, and those who wait for things to happen. The ones who make things happen will look at the magic wand, have a giggle and walk away, waiting to embark on their next adventure, scared or not. They know where they're going and how to get there. The others who wait for things to happen however, will immediately shake it to see what’s to come and in 5 seconds, a whole lifetime of events would manifest themselves. Do you think this would make you happy?
I have learned over the years that playing it safe is just an illusion because life is not about that. You will never evolve if you don’t take risks and you won’t grow if you don’t fail and start from the bottom. Being able to take control of your life, regardless of what’s happening in it is going to take you to the next level. I truly believe that everybody has the potential to be great, to create amazing things in this world that will live on way past their time. But many don’t because it’s hard. It’s that simple, they’re just not willing to put in the hard work. They chose to sit down and patiently wait instead. They wait for the right moment, for them to be prepared for it; they wait for the right opportunity to come knocking on their door. The great Les Brown once said “You don’t have to be great to get started but you have to get started to be great”. There will never be a right time, you just have to start and do it. Don’t wait for things to be perfect, because they will never be. Perfection is simply an illusion we create to trick ourselves into something that isn’t attainable. This way we start feeling hopeful that one day, that perfect moment will arrive. Trust me it won’t, not unless you go get it, or at least meet it half way.
The most successful people I have met didn’t come from wealthy backgrounds, but they were rich in passion and joy for life. These two qualities will take you further than any amount of money ever will. If you want something you have to first be passionate about it. In doing so, you will have the right intention for it to make it happen. Everything that comes from the heart, is genuine and this brings out possibilities. Passion keeps your dreams alive and your vision steady. When you are passionate about what you want to do, you know it’s possible. And if it feels impossible, you will break the barriers to make it happen because that’s what true authenticity flourishes.
There is no special formula for becoming successful, you just have to work hard and believe you can do it. Many people look at successful individuals and wonder how they go to where they are. Don’t waste your time trying to decipher the correct formula because it doesn’t exist. It’s actually quite simple when you discover that if you work hard for it and continue to believe that it will happen, eventually it will. The reason why the world’s greatest innovators are able to do what they do is because they never gave up. They didn’t wait for that holiday in the sun for two weeks or attended every social gathering their friends invited them too. They probably don’t have that many friends, because they focus on what matters to them and that is their vision. Self-belief comes with the ability to trust yourself, to know and appreciate who you are. When you realize that you are the only one who needs to believe you can do whatever it is you desire, that’s when you’ll actually do it. Regardless how much encouragement you receive from others, the voice you always need to listen to is your own. Know you are good enough to achieve everything you want and more. Start believing and take action on that self-power and magic will happen.
Listen to your inner voice and follow your intuition. You know what’s right for you. When you look at the world’s most high achieving athletes, one of the key things that always stands out is their ability to focus on their target. Nadal once said that he knows exactly where his next shot will be, way before it happens. So many times, we know what we really want, but we sometimes let ourselves distracted by others’ opinions. Keep your dreams to yourself, you are the only validation you need. Focus you attention inward and realize that you are the only person who needs to give you the go ahead on where you are going. If you really think about it, you know deep down what you are good at and what makes you happy. Don’t lose track of that feeling and direct your energy on what feels right for you.
What do Arianna Huffington, Indra Nooyi and Oprah have in common? Apart from the fact they are amazing entrepreneurs with super human creative powers, they all share a daily routine system they established for themselves. Setting morning routines could be a complete life changer. You will learn patience and discipline, both very important factors in success. As with everything good in life, the first few steps are the hardest, so don’t get discouraged if you want to quit your newly established routine after a week or so and fall back into your old ways. This is your right side of the brain telling you to go back to what is comfortable and nice. But remember that your conscious directs your unconscious and it is here habits are formed. So give yourself at least three weeks of following the same practices. Soon enough your brain will register it as the new way of doing things and waking up early for that yoga session will feel like normal.
And whilst you don’t necessarily have to wake up at 4 am like Indra does, it certainly would help to commit yourself to a certain routine. This will instill patience and discipline, which are both important factors in success. Here’s a list of habits that will no doubt improve your life.
1. SIP IT
The first thing you should do every morning is to reach out for a glass of water; during the night your body gets dehydrated so before you do anything, grab that glass and down it. To make it more interesting, I’d like to share with you the secret that I have recently discovered about apple cider vinegar. Although it doesn’t taste very nice, it has so many health benefits. Since using it, I feel more energized and alert, and I’ve also noticed a slight appetite decrease. Adding cayenne pepper to the mix will speed up your metabolism and give it that extra boost you need for the day so that you burn all those calories extra fast.
2. STRETCH IT OUT
Regardless if you are a morning person or not, there is really no excuse when it comes to exercising as soon as you get up. You don’t have to run 10km when you jump out of your bed or start power-lifting, but you do need to move your body and get active asap. Your limbs have been stuck in the same position for the last 6 hours or so and they desperately need a kick to function at optimum ability. If you’re not the type who likes intense sweaty workouts, then yoga should be on your list. There tends to be a misconception about the practice, so many people think of it as too slow and boring. But yoga is of many different kinds and you need to find the one that works for you. I am a huge fan of Denise Austen, whose Youtube workouts completely changed my approach to Pilates and yoga, first thing in the morning. Remember that you need to find what suits your style, but stretching your body is a must do each morning.
No I don’t mean that you need to start having a full on conversation with yourself, but a few words of encouragement to start the day with could work wonders. We have become so incredibly ignorant to the fact that the most important voice we need to listen to is our own. Giving yourself a little motivation boost each morning, before you get on with the day will activate your unconscious mind and give it the encouragement it needs to believe it and start creating amazing things. Remember to always think before you speak even to yourself because your brain is constantly listening, processing and finally acts on it.
4. CAFE LATER
Are you one of the many people who can’t face the world before having their cup of coffee in the morning? It’s important to understand that everything we do creates a cognitive connection inside our brain that further on forms our habits. There is nothing wrong with drinking coffee first thing in the morning, but if you start your day exercising and eating a nutritious breakfast, you will find yourself soon enough not needing that caffeine kick. What you need to focus on is giving your body and mind a natural high and this comes by releasing endorphins (through exercise); by feeling hydrated (water) and by receiving its nutritional boost (breakfast). Soon enough you will find that caffeine is no longer part of your needs.
5. LOVE MAKING
Having somebody to wake up next to is already a nice way to start the day. Studies show that couples who make love first thing in the morning, are happier and more successful. During love making, you release oxytocin which is the love hormone but also one that plays a big part in anxiety and stress. By releasing this, your chances of feeling stressed throughout the day will decrease. From an emotional sense, this morning habit could strengthen your relationship and bring you closer than ever. What you do in the first hour of waking up plays a big part in how successful and happy your life is, so starting the day feeling connected and in love is the biggest high out of them all.
Our lives have become so automatic and fast paced that we often fail to stop, stand still and live in the moment. Meditation is an ancient practice that has been become very popular. When done correctly, meditation can open your chakras (your energy system running through your body activating your organs and life) and it can really help you see what you really want out of life. As we are all energy in a cosmic universe under a collective consciousness, meditation can inspire you to see what’s beyond the surface. Meditation is about learning to live in the moment, and just be still. It will help you become aware of what is going on around you and it will help be stay more alert, stress less and enjoy life more.
If you can implement at least half of the above to start with, you will definitely start noticing a positive change in your everyday life. Remember that change must first come from within and nothing without hard work is achieved, so plan it, execute it and stick to it.
It’s a classic day for the lovers out there, and the least favorable day for all the single hopefuls. Valentine’s day is fast approaching and I couldn’t be happier. Yes a single girl in her late 20’s and I’m all about Valentine’s day. I used to dread the 14th of February back in the days, but with time, I understood that it’s not only about the lovers out there. The day is about love, and love, my friends has no limitations.
Isn’t it strange how whenever we talk about the big L word, we tend to instantly think of a romantic relationship, failing to realize that love is everywhere, everyday. When you start loving yourself, every day is Valentines day. Appreciating yourself and your own company is more valuable than anything else. Many people make the common mistake of being in a relationship because they feel lonely, so they think by having a companion that feeling will go away. On the contrary, without loving yourself first, regardless how many relationships you are in, that feeling will not go away. There is a big difference between being alone and feeling lonely. Not all people who are alone feel lonely, but plenty of people who are not alone, can feel as they are. You will never really get it right until you understand that the best relationship you will ever have in your life is the one you will have with yourself. When you are truly at peace and completely content with being on your own, you will no longer need to fill an emptiness, because it won’t exist. So if you truly want to find love, why not start with practicing it on yourself?
Here are 5 habits you can start implementing in your life to embark on a journey of true love. For this, I strongly suggest you get a notepad and keep that as your most treasured possession.
Start by acknowledging what appreciation truly is. You cannot expect somebody else to appreciate you if you don’t do it for yourself first. Everybody is unique and this means we all have different reason why we are amazing. Do you know yours? If not, then it’s time to do some soul searching. Ditch the materialistic characteristics such as good looks, great style, rich and pretty and start looking deeper. What is it that is truly amazing about you? Write down in your notepad 5 different characteristics you posses that you offer to the world. Some examples are loyal, caring, funny, exciting, adventurous, intelligent, creative. When you dig deep you’ll be truly amazed at what you can find. And once you do, start embracing them.
Spend a whole weekend on your own. Only those who can be truly at peace with themselves, can find the same equilibrium when surrounded by others. When you detach yourself from distractions, you’ll soon realize what it is you really are seeking. This doesn’t mean you need to isolate yourself. On the contrary, you should get out there but do it on your own. Time is precious and people don’t realize how important every second we live truly is. Take 2 days for yourself, where you get out on your own. Go to a café order whatever you like; take yourself out for a nice meal as you would like to happen when you go out for dinner with somebody. Go to the movies solo and watch whatever movie you want. Buy yourself some flowers. The benefits of this exercise will only begin to show if you really do what you want and are open to the idea of it. You see, when we are dating somebody, we often don’t even know what we want to do. So finding out what you truly enjoy will bring out your unique spark when dating somebody. You will also become more comfortable with yourself when in a relationship
Write yourself a love letter. I know you are probably laughing right now, but if you are single and reading this, you might as well do it. What have you got to lose? If you’ve never written a love letter before, this is great. Start the letter with everything about yourself that makes you really happy and brings out that excitement in you. Write about the things you want to do “together”, the hopes and dreams you have for yourself. Act as if you are writing this for somebody you else. It may sound funny, but trust me, once you start, you will soon forget you are doing this for yourself and your intuition will start kicking in. That’s when you know you are on the right track.
Find out what really motivates you. In NLP, there is a great theory that every characteristic you appreciate about others, lies within you, hence why you can notice it. For this exercise, think of 5 people you really look up to, or you really love and write down three individual characteristic about each one that make you feel that way about them. Once you have done this, look at the piece of paper. You should discover that they are all quite similar traits and when you have identified them, you’ll be able to realize you actually possess them too. And this will motivate you to bring them out to the surface.
Celebrate your singlehood. Trust me, there are so many reasons to do so. Being on your own means that you can do whatever you want, whenever you want it without having to consult anybody else. Celebrate the fact that you have a chance at discovering your own independence and making things happen by yourself. Being alone, doesn’t have to mean that you are lonely. Love is the strongest, most powerful emotion and you will only truly realize this when you feel it for you and then others. Without you loving yourself, you will never be able to fully 100% feel it for others. Yes you may think you are in love, but it will simply be an illusion. The best way to think about this is when couples spend time apart. They start feeling lonely, missing each other, not being able to function properly. Whilst it’s normal, life is as it is and we are all individuals on this planet. Take away the dependency of needing to be with somebody else, and give yourself that chance first. Once you do, I am sure love from others will make its way into your life.