What happens when you head to the doctor and later receive a call about the rest of your life?
That was my chapter of a book I believed was coming to an end. Yet despite all of my faltering emotions over the past weeks, I came out stronger and learned the most important lesson when you receive life-changing news…
What if I tell you that I have seen you every time you tried to hide. Every time you thought of running away or actually did run away because you were too unsure you can face your problems. What if I tell you that I was there when you couldn't stand to fight for what you have always wanted because you thought it was bigger than what you could take. What if I tell you that I knew how you let your problems outgrow you when you decided to avoid them.
Last week I had a fantastic opportunity to talk to Lukas Zoerner about the challenges of being an entrepreneur, especially when it comes to shaking up the status quo. I've met Lukas during Startupbootcamp acceleration program where I was an entrepreneur-in-residence. Lukas came across as someone so irritatingly brilliant, I couldn't get enough of talking, and debating, and arguing with him so much so we first became frenemies, and then, good friends ;-]
The idea of positive self-talk and the declarative statements that many people call “affirmations” have been around for a long time. Maybe you’ve even tried them yourself, but without much luck.
I was in the same boat until recently, when I discovered one imperative wrinkle in the practice that changed everything for me (including my life). What I didn’t understand before was this: The key to an effective affirmation – or what I like to call a mantra – is not the words themselves, but how they make you feel. To be effective, a mantra has to make you feel good when you say it.
Every morning, I look at myself in the mirror and repeat my mantra “You are loved, you are beautiful in your own imperfection. Go outside and shine.”
That may sound cheesy, but it has helped me to at least to get out of bed and start a new day without feeling like a burden.
The choice is yours.
As a law student and lawyer, I tried to think my way to a better life. I tried to think my way out of my depression. I failed completely. By the time I realized I had to stop thinking, I was mired in student debt, working at a job I hated, and taking pills every day just to get by. I still take antidepressants, but the other things have changed. How? I had to let go of my ruminating, overthinking rational self, and let intuition guide me to the answer. When you listen, the small voice of intuition speaks wise words.
How busy is your life? Do you work long hours barely getting enough sleep? Do you tend to stress a lot? Do you often forget to take care of yourself? If you answered yes to any of those questions then you should look closer into practicing self-care, to help improve your mental health and overall quality of life.
Sometimes, successful people lead us to believe that they keep going, 24/7/365 based on sheer willpower and passion. You hear buzzwords everywhere and you think that if you just find that one thing that drives you, you’ll be all set. Naturally, if you believe this and find yourself struggling to find that one thing, you might feel defeated. Remove the notion that you’re missing a secret ingredient. You aren’t missing anything. Rather, you’re misunderstanding, which brings me to my next point.
Snapchat changed my life. You might think I’m exaggerating but as an introvert who avoids attention and confrontation at all costs, I can assure you from the bottom of my easily-offended heart that it’s the truth.
I want to invite us all to revel in who we are. Approve of yourself. Approve of your so-called ‘weaknesses’ as well as your strengths. Rather than spending all your time trying to compensate for what doesn’t come naturally to you, find ways to capitalize on what does. It’s so much easier and more enjoyable to boot.
All the literature on grief seemed to be telling me my life would be in tatters for years. I was determined not to accept this. Running away from grief was not an option, but I could cycle through it. My late partner had wanted to cycle the British coast to coast in one day; I would take on the challenge in his memory.