“What are you doing this Christmas?”
For so many Christmas is a joyful holiday, filled with love and light.
However, it turns out this question triggers some deep-rooted negative emotions for some, such as stress, sadness, frustration, conflict, and guilt.
Has Christmas become an obligation for you? A holiday where you are being pulled in all directions? You feel you can’t please them all, so you’d rather just skip it or just get it over with?
I hear to many of my friends stress about where to go, what to do, who to please and how, and no matter what they decide, they’re letting someone down. They can’t get it right, and no matter what they do, feeling guilty is the result.
"Tis the season to be jolly, fa la la la la la la la la”.
The high expectations are hard to meet for many. Christmas is a reminder of loss and grief, or not living up to the expectations.
This can tear...
A little over a year ago I wrote the following post while I was with my mom for the last three weeks of her life. I miss her, but reading this again reminded me that I am grateful for the things she gave me, most importantly, MY LIFE!
She deserves nothing less than my very best effort to make my life meaningful and happy. I try and keep that in mind when I let things get to me. She is my greatest cheerleader in a way!
This post is still very relevant today. I’d like to share it with you.
Who is your cheerleader?
There are certain moments in our life when we all pause and reflect. We stop our busyness, take time to go within, and remind ourselves what is really important in life.
The beginning of a life, when a baby is born, and the end of a life.
These are the moments we remember how precious life is, what life really is all about, and what it is not about.
I am in the middle of experiencing a time where a precious...
November is the time when the poppy pins appear here in Canada.
When I first moved here, almost 15 years ago, I wondered why everyone was all of a sudden wearing the poppy pin. A tradition unfamiliar to me. Though the sentiment was, and is very familiar and personal to me.
My mom and dad lived in Rotterdam during the second world war. Well, they weren’t mom and dad yet, they were teenagers and had not met yet.
My mom My dad.
I was born in Rotterdam.
Rotterdam was heavily bombed...
Photo by Tim Marshall on Unsplash
The only thing I feel grateful for is LOVE. Love needs all my focus right now, so I am thankful for love. ALL the love in the world.
Last night I had a fantastic Thanksgiving dinner with friends. I am thankful for my friends being there with me.
The beautiful thing about the evening was that I felt so much love. All of my friends were obviously feeling secure and safe, knowing that they are all loved. Knowing that they are accepted for who they are. No pretences, no judgements, just fun, laughter, genuine interest and compassion.
A microcosm of the world at large.
I need to see that in my world, make it all that I see. Feeling safe and secure, feeling loved and accepted. No judgements, lots of compassion and understanding.
What the world needs today is to be thankful for the love that is there. Focus on the love that is everywhere.
Seeing only hate and fear is a lie. Looking at the love and feeling free of fear is not sticking your head in the sand,...
The one thing all human beings have in common is that we all just want to be happy.
Now this could be a very short blog, because it is so simple: the key to happiness is to be happy.
That doesn’t really help anyone. And if it really was that easy, everyone would be happy already. Simple does not necessarily mean it is easy.
I used to say this all the time to my patients when I was still practicing physiotherapy, along with the words ‘using common sense’ and ‘keeping it simple’. My job was to teach my patients new habits, putting common sense into common practice and keeping it simple and practical, coaching them towards a healthier, happier life.
I know for a fact that most people are not happy. At least, not most of the time and not in all areas of their life.
Maybe you are happy with your job or career, but not so happy in your relationship.
I know many...
Where you are is already perfect.
Nobody has to change because they aren’t good enough but because they want to grow.
Resisting growth is asking for trouble.
You already are good enough, you are perfect where you are, you don’t have to change to become a better person. You already are that person.
Do you know what this means? Read the words again and feel that in your body. Doesn’t that feel like a huge relief?
You don’t have to prove anything to anybody
Imagine if all children believe and know that they are already perfect, and what lies in front of them are endless opportunities to learn and grow. Not because they need to become better, but because they are destined to be great and fulfill their dreams.
Imagine what would happen if we all believed that.
The competition would end. The self doubt and fears would dissipate. Only the desire for growth and expansion would remain, without any expectations or pressure.
These are important questions to ask yourself and to do some self reflection on.
Without power there is no light. Without light, there is no hope. Without hope, life ceases.
Power only becomes apparent within the context of relationships. Only when someone appears to have some kind of impact on others and society and ability to create change in the community or the world, do we say they are powerful.
A powerful person is an influential person.
Influence is the ability to connect, communicate, have an impact, be emphatic,...
Who hasn’t used the ‘blame it on the dogs’ excuse for things gone wrong?
Blame stands for:
Behave Less Accountably and More Egocentrically
We all blame or have been a blamer at some point of our lives.
Let me share a true story about myself.
I was a blamer once.
My dad had just passed away. I had made 3 trips back and forth to the Netherlands in the previous 4 months while he was sick, the last one was for his funeral. I was exhausted from all the emotions, the traveling and jet lag.
I really needed some support and a place to feel safe. I was hoping my relationship could offer that when I came home. Instead, I had the bottom ripped away from under my feet and fell in a deep dark hole.
My partner confessed that someone else had become the centre of attention, I was no longer loved and the relationship was over.
It was the beginning of a nightmare, that lasted about 3 years. I didn’t think things could get worse, but they did.
How can you possibly feel free in today’s world when there seems to be so much injustice, manipulation and hatred?
How can you feel free from worrying and fears, free from doubt and uncertainty, free from other people’s opinions and judgments?
How can you be free from the ongoing power struggle between you and others in your life, your employer, your co-workers, your family, or your significant other?
How can you not be a prisoner of your self imposed limitations: the belief you are inadequate, incapable, and you don’t deserve?
And how can you not be consumed by preparing for life’s adversities that are undoubtedly coming your way, leaving you worried and fearful about tomorrow?
Well, it is all a matter of perspective.
It all depends on how you perceive your life.
We live in uncertain times. Too many things seem to be causing fear and worry.
The climate, political unrest, wars, economic uncertainty, threats to our health and well-being not to mention all the things just in our personal lives.
Many of us don’t feel as safe anymore looking at what is going on in the world around us. Looking at the future causes fear and uncertainty. There is a sense of powerlessness.
Lately just around where I live, mother nature has been threatening and destructive with flooding, washouts, and windstorms causing damage, injury, and death.
It is no wonder that we feel as if we have no control over our life. It’s easy to feel powerless and even hopeless at times.
How can you gain your power and balance back and not get carried away and feel subjected to the chaos around you? How can you maintain a sense of positive power?
This third blog in this series of four is about how to feel less powerless in an uncertain,...
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