Blog Archives

Gratitude, Schmatitude & rebooting life

If a fellow isn’t thankful for what he’s got, he isn’t likely to be thankful for what he’s going to get.
~Frank A. Clark

“Gratitude, she claimed, was the answer. Wallowing only makes things worse. “Instead, start each day with five things you’re grateful for. We can e-mail our lists every morning to encourage each other.”

Last year, November, when I was struggling with the new direction my life was taking, too exhausted, too depressed to get through the days, this landed in my inbox in the morning and this quote and this paragraph caught my eye. Everything that I feared, everything that depressed me, were things in the future. Things which may or may not take place. Things over which I did not have any control.

So a few weeks of feeling like this, I was tired of being depressed and negative. Life changing events shake us to our core. Yes, mourning and grieving are inevitable for what could have been but would never be. But life doesn’t end, it goes on and we have to find a way to go on with it.

So I took the advice and started a gratitude list with my girl friends. Every day we emailed each other 3 things that we were grateful for that day. Here’s the things that we were grateful for:

“Having friends who will be there for you – through the good, bad and ugly”

“Having fantastic colleagues who are incredibly understanding, supportive & wise”

“Having a job that I genuinely love doing”

“Learning something new everyday – at work, at university”

“Being able to make a difference in the lives of people we see everyday and those we don’t even know”

“Not getting lost in a new city and making some local friends”

The rest went more or less along the same line….. looking back what does this list say to me?

Human connection is by far the greatest need that we have. Beyond the need for the basic – food, clothing, shelter – all the other levels of Maslow’s theory are based on factors affected by people, other than you.

Did the gratitude list help me? It took a few days but eventually once again I started looking more at the positive incidences in my every day life. You attract whatever it is that you are looking for. Since I looked out more for the good things in life, I noticed them more. Because I saw them more and felt an even greater sense of gratitude for them, my satisfaction with my life was once again restored.

Nothing in life is as it seems – because everything depends on how you see it 🙂

Advertisements

The grass is always greener on the other side ;)

Schapiro’s Explanation:

The grass is always greener on the other side,

but that’s because they use more manure.

If you are jealous of someone else’s success, if you are constantly comparing yourself to others and coming up short. Then the time has come for you to have an honest conversation with yourself about whatever it is that you are jealous of in others. Take an inventory of your life and decide on what needs to change for you to be happy.

Just remember ….

You can’t change others, you can only change yourself.

When you can’t change a situation, you can change your attitude towards that situation.

Whatever you can’t change – you have the power to decide on whether to accept or discard.

Whatever you can’t accept, discard it, if that means having to let go of people, situations, dreams, jobs, clothes in your closets… just do it.

You only get one life to live, why waste it in unhappiness of jealousy?

The lazy person’s guide to being healthy

Let’s face it, it’s been about 8/9 weeks since your new year resolution to work on a healthier, skinnier you… and now your motivation is waning. Gym is boring. Food is interesting. You are cheating… with yourself.

“Man. Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money. Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health. And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present; the result being that he does not live in the present or the future; he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.” – Dalai Lama

Fact is most of us will not realize the value of good health until our body or mind or both quits on us.

 

In our hyper-active, hyper-connected modern life, we are so busy being busy that finding the time and energy to exercise, eat right, engage in activities that reduce the inevitable stress that arises from such a hectic lifestyle should be a top priority in ALL of our lives.

So what can you do when you don’t have time to take care of yourself? Here’s a short list which you can customize and adapt to your own routine. Six non-sweat easy tips and One that encourages you to sweat it out 😉

Practice Gratitude: 

First thing in the morning when you open your eyes, in the space before thoughts invade and the to-do list in your head starts ticking. Stop. Breathe. Practice gratitude.

Be grateful that you are alive.

Healthy.

Awake.

In your bed and not a hospital.

Be grateful for being able to breathe without assistance.

Some days I am so depressed that I find it difficult to find things to be grateful for. Yet I know that I am incredibly blessed. So on my bleak days, I decide to be grateful for little things, like breathing, reading, books, the fact that I can walk without pain or that I still have all of my teeth. Whatever floats your boat… just find something to be grateful for and sincerely concentrate on that blessing.

Meditate:

Take a few minutes and meditate. There are many ways to meditate. You can chant, concentrate, visualize, play the singing bowl, flute or a guided meditation CD … whichever method works for you. Again, if you are not the kind that can sit cross-legged on the floor with your hands on your knees, don’t. If walking on the grass in the backyard works for you, do.

Meditating is about centering yourself. Connecting to the here and now. To be present. It’s the deepest part of you that remains unruffled through the storm of life. It stores your energy, your resilience. Connect and appreciate yourself.

You can create a daily routine to help get yourself into the mindset to meditate or you can take a few minutes through out the day to practice it as you need it. It’s like taking a smoke-break for smokers. Instead of getting off your desk to go smoke, you take a few minutes to breathe and center your mind.

 

 

Sleep:

When you cheat on your diet or worry obsessively or simply don’t get around to doing any of the above… don’t worry .. there’s still something that you can do to keep yourself healthy. You can sleep. Not the tossing & turning kind of sleep but a real good night’s sleep. Empty your bedroom of all electronic devices, specifically the TV and make it the kind of haven that you need to truly relax in. If darkness is your thing, install double blinds or get a light blinder for yourself. If you are a light sleeper, put on some white noise to reduce outside interruptions to your sleep cycle. Whatever else you might cheat on… don’t cheat yourself from getting a good night’s rest. Make it routine & a habit to go to bed at a fixed time. Cheating throughout the week and making up for it by sleeping in on the weekend, doesn’t work.

No matter how blue I am .. I usually feel a whole lot better after I have managed to get a good snooze. It has helped me hang on to my sanity on days I want to blow my top 😉

 

Hug:

Hug the person next to you. Hug before you leave home. Hug when you get home. Hug your colleagues if you share that kind of relationship. Hug your friends when you see them. A 20 second hug releases oxytocin, nature’s anti-depressant and anti-anxiety hormone.

 

 

 

Laugh:

Find something to laugh about throughout the day. If not a belly laughter at least smile through out the day, even when you don’t feel like it. Try it. You can’t smile and hold on to anger, depression, anxiety, stress. It’s just not possible. The physical effect of putting on a smile or laughing, transforms negative emotions & releases happy hormones. So go on .. laugh at yourself, or if all fails, laugh at all the cute animal videos on YouTube 😉

 

Write it out:

Put aside 20 minutes at the end of the day, sit down comfortably and write. Don’t think about what to write or how to write. Just write. Whatever is on your mind. Forget about spellings and grammatical errors. Suspend that grammar nazi in you. Just write.

Write about whatever is running through your head. Whatever is clouding your emotions. Whatever is nagging at the back of your mind that keeps you up tossing and turning. Take up a pen and paper and write it out.

Get moving:

Get moving and feel that blood flowing through your veins. If working out at the gym is not your thing, try a different activity …  yoga, competitive sport, dancing, start walking to the store, running to your chores, parking farthest at the parking lot….  if nothing else, walk back home from work, at least part of the way. Again, whatever floats your boat, as long as you are being active for at least 20 minutes every day, the kind of active that raises your heart beat.

 

 

So time to get on that band-wagon of new year resolution to achieve a healthier you. If you are tired of sweating it out without seeing some results that motivate you to continue… I suggest practicing the first six tips vigorously 😉

Attitude and Entitlement

I try to help people network, to find opportunities, for business, for jobs. I actually enjoy doing it but at times when I politely decline, or advice a job seeker to rethink their approach to the search, some simply respond back with a renewed appeal to help them make more money, to save them from the misery of their current jobs/bosses/companies. In short, to use my network to land them a better-paying job anywhere. The tone of the appeals remind me of the fairy tale myth of a knight in shining armour riding in to rescue the damsel in distress.

When I advice these people to get more experience or trainings or education, it’s not taken well. They don’t want advice, suggestion or help. You land them a job that pays better, has lax/better working conditions and they will be happy. Everything else, simply falls on deaf ears.

Now, riddle me this – “What do these people tell themselves that they are entitled to?”

Take this one particular guy for example. He has been working in the same company for the past 16 years, doing the exact same thing. He’s a graduate, who latched on to his first job and remained there. He fed himself the lies and fears that everyone (yes that includes me) feels. He’s poor, not very well-connected, not smart enough, good-looking enough, intellectual enough, the wrong gender (and you can add many more…) so he can’t get a better job. Forget the fact that for 16 freaking years, he did not even attempt to do something more in his own work! No growth, vertical or horizontal. No network or support within the company either because he doesn’t get along with any of his colleagues or he feels isolated, threatened and lashes back at real or imaginary slights. Not once does he stop to question that if he has a problem with EVERY single person around him, then the root of the problem might be himself.

What makes people with attitude like this think that the company is going to owe him a living for the rest of his life? that he has any right to complain about how much he gets paid? Or that even after his job becomes defunct, the company will continue to employ him in a function no longer needed? How?

The mental record that this guy (and I am sure million others) is playing to himself/herself over and over again is that of being a victim of circumstances. To these people destiny is determined by events and instances totally out of their control. 

 One guy wrote me a message, in really bad english (that’s my pet peeve), about how he needs to find a better paying job because he needs to support his family. Really? Like seriously? Show me one person who doesn’t have obligations. Show me one person who doesn’t have a present or future family to support. Show me one person who doesn’t have problems in this world, whether that’s money or family or physical or mental or something else. Do they really sit around thinking that they are going to get a job, keep a job and get paid more every year … just because they need it? Who doesn’t want or need more than what they have right now?

Sadly though this quote by Thomas Jefferson is the most apt in this situation. You can spend  months and years trying to help someone but until they are willing to help themselves …… nothing changes.

In Bangladesh, a country of close to 160 million people, if you can read and write you are part of the 53% of the population who can do so and half the competition is already eliminated there.  If you have access to internet, you are part of the 3.7 to 6 % of the population who do so, putting you literally at the top percentile of the population. If you have a job, you should be grateful that you are not part of the 5% of the population who cannot find employment.

So let’s look at it in another way: In a country of 160 million people, you are in the top 53% because you are literate, top 6% because you have access to internet. To top it of, in these times of global recession, despite all the political turmoil, you are employed in an economy that experienced 6% GDP growth and 3% employment growth. Do you need more?

Do these people realize that a growing economy creates jobs that has never existed before? That our education prepared us for jobs that were probably defunct in the 4-6 years that it took us to graduate? Theories and concepts go through constant evolution, unless we keep up, we become dinosaur in the job market?  To grow horizontally or vertically in our function or job is our own responsibility?

NO ONE owes anyone anything. If our parents afforded us an education, they have already done more than enough. They do not owe it to us, to use their relatives, networks, connections, savings to plead or pay for us to secure a job. That is our responsibility.

If a company employs us, they do not owe it to us to see to our professional growth. We have to do it ourself and if we can’t grow within the company then it is our responsibility to grow outside of it.

Change your sense of entitlement. Change that mental record that says, I am owed this or that. Change the mental record that you are victim of circumstances, birth, limitations etc. We determine our own attitude.

 

No one grows alone. Everyone needs help. We all need bosses we can learn from; mentors to guide us in our journeys; books to expand our mind; ideas and debates that rock the believes we hold and helps us shape new ones. The more your sense of entitlement is pointed inward to yourself, the more you expect of yourself, the more time you invest in yourself, the better the result.

Until you know where you want to go, how can others show you how to get there?

Fortuitous Forty!!!

figuring out life after 40...

Inner Whispers

Messages from Within

Triangle Below Canal Street

Don't Sleep On This

House of Uncommons

The uncommon perceptions, wisdom, and senses

Life on the road

Travel, Adventure and Roadtrips.

Attila Ovari

Loving Life and Inspiring Others

rennydiokno.com

global group of international organization for poverty & disable development program

Naijacarrot

finishing lives since the era of dinosaurs

Kezia Lubanszky

Writer, Editor, Bridget Jones Enthusiast

Tania Marie's Blog

Creating Life as a Work of Art

How Far From Home

Two Creatives. One Wanderlist. Zero reasons to stay at home.

we hunted the mammoth

the new misogyny, tracked and mocked

I Do & Adieu

I Do & Adieu

Kendall Kessler Art

Original Art by Award Winning Artist Kendall Kessler

Just A Primer

Musings and other thoughts on beauty.

FOOD LAW LATEST

food safety, food law, food frauds, food recalls, food

The Renegade Press

Tales from the mouth of a wolf

Reiki Mark Cross

Peace, happiness and relaxation

My Life

The Daily Adventures of a Single Mom

traces of orange

S M SHAHRUKH

Agro and Farming

A Blog about Agriculture and Farming related NEWS, Reviews, Technologies, Products, Crops, Tips, Thoughts, Stories and lots . . .

ValerieTarico.com

AwayPoint: Between An Island of Certainties and the Unknown Shore

ideas.ted.com

Explore ideas worth spreading

hessianwithteeth

This site is all about ideas

A Narcissist Writes Letters, To Himself

A Hopefully Formerly Depressed Human Vows To Practice Self-Approval

Casey Fiesler

#academia #internet #law #feminism #geek

leylashah2014

just another boy who wants to be a girl

The Accidental Mathematician

Because "exact science is not always exact science."

YIN NEW ZEALAND

A place for lovers of Yin and Yang to unite

Critical Dispatches

Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @RichyDispatch

LGBTI Bangladesh

The mouthpiece of the Sexual Minorities in Bangladesh

wellfesto

hacking health, designing life

সাদাসিধে কথা আর্কাইভ

মুহম্মদ জাফর ইকবাল এর কলামগুলোর সংগ্রহ

The Belle Jar

"Let me live, love and say it well in good sentences." - Sylvia Plath

Single Mom Spot

Strength in the Singular

Where is Shyamni?

Being Sharon; finding Shyamni...

Quartz

Quartz is a digitally native news outlet for the new global economy.

The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies

Online Programs in the Humanities and the Social Sciences at UNCG

A Travel Blog

By Lena Desmond

TED Blog

The TED Blog shares interesting news about TED, TED Talks video, the TED Prize and more.

Kindness Blog

Kindness Images, Videos, True Life Stories, Quotes, Personal Reflections and Meditations.

The Only Way Is Dhaka!

Daily blog of an Englishwoman (married to a Bangladeshi) living in Dhaka, Bangladesh....

%d bloggers like this: