The “precious”-issue

Does this question sound familiar to you? “Should we take the good plates, or the regular ones, grandma?”

Grandmas definitely have the “precious”-issue with many of their things and we copied certain behaviour from them. Expensive, precious or special things should only be used for special occasions. This is why we have “special” jewelery, silverware, plates and many other things only to be used for special occasions.

I am generally not a big supporter of this behaviour and don´t want to end up with still packaged items, waiting for this special moment to come. (and probably wait for the moment for ever…)

This morning I was packing for my upcoming trip and was dealing with “precious”-issues myself! My CAMERA was the object I wanted to protect. As most of you will know – I love my camera. My initial thought was:

beach = sand + water = BAD for my Camera

And I did not pack it. Instead I packed a cheap compact camera to use on my trip. I closed the bag and instantly got sad: No fun with my hobby on this trip… 😦

I talked to my “wise” friend about it and he said:

“First ask yourself: why have i bought this camera? Then ask whatfor do I use it?”
My answers were: “I bought it because I love taking good pictures. And I am using it for everything.”
“Then use it. Sometimes we take too much care about our stuff, even if they were made to serve us. Take good care of your camera, because it gives you happiness through taking pictures. Yes, it was expensive…and it would be really sad if something bad would happen to it, But it’s purpose is to take pictures, and if you don’t use it, It would be like if it is already broken.”
I packed it.
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9 boxes

That´s all I own.

Being a traveller for the past 6 years I have not stayed in one place for more than 10 months in a row. Always on the move, I downsized my life into 9 moving-boxes now safely stored at my grandpa´s.

And actually, none of these things are of big importance, either. Most of the boxes are filled with memories. With things people that are, or were important to me gave me a while ago and I somehow can´t let go of them, always having the thought in the back of my mind that throwing these things away could just as well mean throwing the memories away or not being attached to important people in my life anymore.

Of course, old picture frames, a coffe can or a stuffed animal might serve as a symbol of a human relationship or special memory, but those items do not contain my feelings. The feelings are solely inside of me. However, some items are serving as tokens or keys to trigger certain feelings or reactions.

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At the beginning of this year I reacted to a post by the “escapethecity.com” community. A fellow escapee member James Wallman was looking for interviewees for his book project “Stuffocation” (UK book, releasing date September 2013 by crux publishing). This man is writing a book about all the things I have been busy thinking about within the past couple of years!

He asked me one very interesting question: “If you could only have one item, which item would be most important to you?” And I answered that I would choose either my digital camera or my laptop. He was laughing and replied that most of his interviewees replied the same thing. What is the item you guys would choose?

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wise words from…

… a NEWSLETTER!

I am receiving so many newsletters for stuff I don´t even remember I´ve signed up for. And today I had on my “To-do” list, to de-register from most of them. And what happened? I opened the first one from the ‘coaching training alliance’ and found this lovely text:

You are not in control of everything. That’s right. Contrary to popular belief, you cannot control everything that goes on around you. The economy will crash, people will say and do things that make you upset, clients will come and go, your business will ebb and flow. And there’s not much you can do about it. Or is there?

One way to gain a bit of control back is to understand that things don’t happen to you, for you or against you. Things just happen. You are not here to control what happens. Your job is to control how you react to what happens. And the way you react determines how your life unfolds from that point on. Hence, control.

In other words, people and circumstances can show up (or throw up) in your life however they may, but you get to choose how it will affect you…or not.

The moment you begin to take control of your reactions you begin to take control of your reality. Now that’s some cool shift!

Source: 

Jennifer Powers is a coach, speaker and author of the best-selling book Oh, shift!. She teaches and inspires people to stand in their power to get what they want. Jennifer is also on the faculty of Coach Training Alliance.

Planting the seed

Today I´ve been thinking of planting seeds, or better thoughts in people´s minds. Thoughts are powerful.

A while ago, I had the honour to be the student of a good teacher. The subject of teaching does not really matter, what is important about the story is that he was a good teacher – a teacher as a teacher should be. He was kind, smiled at everybody, and enjoyed his job.

The teacher offered afternoon classes (in his spare time) for students who needed some extra help. I attended – not because I needed extra help, I was actually one of the better students in my class, but simply because I enjoyed working with him. When doing my tasks and making mistakes I would talk to my self and say things like “stupid me, mixed the numbers up again!” or “oh no, I am so dumb! I am not good for anything, I can´t even type!”. He would listen to me for a while and then interrupt my work by saying: “Sorry to interrupt, but I could not overhear you talking to yourself like that. Be careful what you tell yourself, Valeska. One day you might believe your words.”

In this very moment I just thought that he does not know what he is talking about, and that it was of course stupid of me to mix up the numbers. But after a while, when I came home and in many moments after this incident I have been thinking about this afternoon in the courtyard of my highschool on a very hot early-summer day. I learned to be more gentle to myself and more careful about the thoughts I am planting in my head.

Now I would say to myself: “Oh, I mixed up the numbers again! Good I double-checked and found the mistake and corrected it. Well done. Problem solved.”

Planting a seed of success starts within yourself.Image

Plant one of those:

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Mr. Goenka

… is my inspiration of today.

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2 years ago I have been participating in Mr. Goenka´s Vipassana meditation for “new students”. This is what I thought about it in 2011: https://valeskasblog.wordpress.com/2011/07/08/vipassana-meditation-indonesia/

I was a very critical student 2 years ago. And to be honest, I think I was not in the right state of mind for this kind of meditation. However, now 2 years later Mr. Goenka still touches my life and crosses my mind more often I would have ever imagined. Mr. Goenka is trying to equip every human being with a set of tools to live a peaceful life, but is up to every single person to use them.

His meditation technique might not have worked for me at the time, neither am I meditating at home in silence every day… but his message came through. It reached out and touched my heart and soul. Mr. Goenka is neither a religious nor a political leader.

I found this speech from 2000 to the UN, which I think is worth reading. http://www.jp.dhamma.org/index.php?id=1174&L=1&id=1174

Short extract:

“Non-Violence: the Key to a Definition of Religion 
There are bound to be differences between religions. However, by gathering at this World Peace Summit, leaders of all the major faiths have shown that they want to work for peace. Let peace then be the first principle of “universal religion”.”

Transition phase

Today I´m all about transition phases. You know, that phase when you are trying to grow your hair from short to long and it just looks horrible until you´ve passed a certain point. Transition phases are not easy to stand through and sometimes all you want is to cut your hair and go back to your old life! The only thing that keeps you growing your hair and through the long phase of exposedness is to keep the ultimate goal in mind.

Why this hair example? Well, I see myself and people in my surroundings going through these kind of transition phases. The changes might not be of physical nature like a haircut, however influencing each life path drastically. A friend of mine sent me this youtube video that explains exactly what is happening in my head and probably in the head of many others:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h8tHIi5ebEM

Constant change, struggle, development and battle within yourself. Stay focused and keep your final goal in mind! 🙂

And don´t worry:

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