Don’t spread your pain in installments. Let go of your past.

Take a look at your past. What do you see? Is it the source of your strength and experience or the source of a recurring pain and suffering?

How old are you? Even if you’re still young, you’ve been through some experiences in your life. Some of them were pleasant, wonderful, worth to remember. But there were also the moments which you don’t want to remember, but somehow they come back to the surface of your life like dead fish which emerge at the surface of the water in a river-flow.

Which memories take up the most space in your mind?

Pleasant ones or turbulent ones from your past? Still the same old movie that’s haunting you, trying to revive same old scene, like in a song by Roxy?

How to deal with the negative experiences from your past?
Skiing can be the answer.

What we tend to do with our past experiences is we revive them by thinking about them in our present. We are worried all the time when we meet a new person and we wonder “what if he or she turns out to be like my ex?”. We are afraid of being exposed to pain and suffering, of  losing ourselves again. Because we all are well-aware of how hard it is to find ourselves back on track after a painful fall.

We fail to control the thoughts about our past the way we forget to control our skis when we’re wearing them for the first time.

What we tend to do with our past experiences is we revive them by thinking about them in our present. We are worried all the time when we meet a new person and we wonder “what if he or she turns out to be like my ex?”. We are afraid of being exposed to pain and suffering, of  losing ourselves again. Because we all are well-aware of how hard it is to find ourselves back on track after a painful fall.

We fail to control the thoughts about our past the way we forget to control our skis when we’re wearing them for the first time. 

Have you ever tried cross-country skiing?

When you learn the skating technique it is essential to keep the V shape of your skis to glide and move forward. If you don’t keep the V you either fall or glide backwards. Therefore, as a beginner you need to put all your attention to keeping your V and moving forward. It’s a practice. If you check on YouTube some cross-country skating you’ll find watching it easy and it will appear to you as a relatively easy technique. But it’s only after you put your skis on and practise, you discover it’s a hard work and an enjoyable though painful exercise for your muscles.

The same goes for letting go of your past.

You cannot erase it by clicking ‘delete’ but you can store it in some part of your memory. Instead of accessing these painful memories every day, focus on keeping your skis in your V to move forward. Stay in the present and don’t let your thoughts about the past wander around. Control them the way you control your skis on a slope.

Easier said than done – you’ll say.  Indeed. Letting go of your past requires practise. It is not an in-born ability. The only things which are innate is your tendency to have a prostate cancer, the length of your thighbone or the amount of hair on your head. All the rest is up to you how you deal with it.

It is not enough to sit and tell yourself “dear thoughts about the past, please go away”. They won’t.  The more you think about them, the more influence they will have on your life. The pain will thus be spread in installments, instead of being paid at once. 

Traumatic past experiences are like small stones in your shoes that hurt your feet.

Such stones are past, disappointing relationship, broken hearts, old wounds and inability to forgive. You can cover your hurt feet with plasters with Mickey Mouse but it won’t eliminate the pain.

What you need to do is to deal with the source of the pain – take the stones out of your shoes. They won’t fall out by themselves. 

There’s one good exercise, which can help you to say goodbye to your negative memories of your past. Usually it’s people, who hurt us and produce the negative hurtful emotions. That’s why it’s essential to let go of them peacefully. The technique is called ‘the ship’.

  1. Lie down on your bed, switch off all distractions like mobile phones or computers.
  2. Close your eyes and breathe deeply for 5 minutes.
  3. Imagine you stand on a pier by a beautiful sea. Smell the fresh, salty air, hear the seagulls screams.
  4. Picture a big ship standing by the pier. This ship has everything essential for a very long, infinite journey. It is safe and modern and the person who will board the ship will have everything she or he will ever need.
  5. See a person (the one that hurt you in the past and you want to let go) strolling on the pier, walking to meet you. 
  6. Look at his/her eyes and thank him/her for everything you have experienced together and say to him/her that you are going to let them go on a beautiful infinite journey, away from your life.
  7. In this moment you may cry. Allow yourself for the tears and all the emotions. Feel them and let them be. Take the pain out. Say “thank you” again.
  8. Observe the person boarding the ship. 
  9. Then, release the anchor and watch the ship until it disappears over the horizon.
  10. Now, take a deep breath, smell the see and look forward to the horizon when new things and people will soon come to you.
  11. Take a deep breath and open your eyes. Welcome again 🙂 

You have released your past and you have sent the person who was producing the negative thoughts on an infinite journey. You let go and made space for new things to come. Well done!

We’re like pawns on the eternal board, who are never quite sure what they’ve moved towards. But it’s far better to have an unsure future than to live in the same old scene that’s been haunting us.

Let go of your past and get rid of the burden which prevents you from creating a happy future. Focus on keeping your V and moving forward. Take a ski lesson.

Enjoy your practice!

Plantation of Creativity Team

Why your dreams don’t come true?

Robert had one big dream. To wake up and to see that finally everything’s alright. That he has a good job, a steady income, a wonderful girlfriend and friends, who call him a “viking” instead of a “loser”.

He’s been having this dream since many, many years. Why it doesn’t come true? Why the universe keeps ignoring Robert’s wish list?

MOVEMENT AS THE LACKING INGREDIENT

We wake up every day with a fresh chance to finally move on. But the only thing we do is moving our limbs to repeat the ordinariness of our everyday existence: make coffee, put a shirt on and step on the gas pedal to go to work. 

If Robert’s dream was to have a good job and steady income, what has he been doing the past 5 years? Moving his limbs, that’s it.

He wished for a new job but only in his head. He was moving his limbs to execute daily repeatable activities but not to go after his true dreams and hit the dancefloor of his life.

With dreams it’s like with a vertical wrinkle in between your eyebrows. The more you frown, exercising this muscle, the more visible it appears. If you literally don’t exercise your dreams, if you don’t make steps towards them, they will stay in your memory for some time, giving in to the weariness of everyday life.

It’s crucial to realise that dreams stay dreams until you move and do something about them.

PURSUE YOUR DREAM THE SAME WAY YOU DECORATE YOUR CHRISTMAS TREE

Christmas is already past behind us, but let me make a small comparison for you.

Christmas trees are simple trees. Fir, pine, spruce. Straight from the forest. They are made “Christmas” or festive, the moment you decorate them. You put a star on top and colourful baubles. You decorate it the way you want.

First you make a plan what decorations you’d like to buy (chains, light, baubles etc). You choose the type, style and color. You plan how you’re gonna decorate it and how the lights are gonna hang. Then, after such preparations you stand before your tree and with  watchful eyes you choose the location for your baubles. You move back a couple of steps to assess how it looks. After you finish, you sit by the fireplace and enjoy your work. You enjoy the beauty of the Christmas tree, which became “Christmas” thanks to your effort. 

The same goes for your dreams. You already have a tree – a dream in your mind. You just need to get off from your couch and go shopping for baubles or make them yourself. Decide and plan how to achieve your dreams. Make them goals. Put them in your calendar. And finally, move towards them.

Christmas is gone? Make Christmas in your life, where each day is a special sparkling bauble which gets you closer and closer to your dream.

With best wishes for the New Year!

Plantation of Creativity Team 🙂

DREAMS DON’T COME TRUE. YOU MAKE THEM TRUE.

Don’t give up so fast. Find your magic cone.

Do you know these happy people, always smiling and satisfied with their lives? When you pass them by you think they must have won a lottery or received a pay rise.

The truth is, a happy and contented person who has an enjoyable and beautiful life had to first sail through thunderstorms, get lost in the Amazon jungle and be bitten by poisonous spiders. It didn’t all come easy. In order to become a happy unicorn living a life full of magic you need the courage and motivation to go out there to a sometimes dark forest and search for your pine cone.

A pine cone? What for? You might ask. A pine cone can be a metaphor for whatever you would like to have or achieve in your life. A happy relationship, a loving family, your dream job, being financially free or being one of the best actors in the la la land.

Usually we don’t appreciate the number of attempts we need to take to see the change in our lives. The majority of people try once or twice and when they see that it didn’t work out – they give up and close themselves in the caves of their hearts, where their dreams fade to grey like in a song by Visage.

Angela once told me over a cup of coffee: “You know, I got burned in love so many times that now I don’t give a sh** anymore. I won’t try to find my dream partner, I stop it. Maybe he will find me“.

Right… How many times did you tell yourself the very un-magical word “maybe”? If all you can commit to is “maybe”, then you are not ready to depart for a search and discovery of your pine cone… Putting your happiness in hands of other people is like playing Mario game. Do you remember it? You move on with a click of a joystick, defeat enemies, achieve goals and advance to a further round. But not in real life. Clicking is not living. If you don’t try in real life you are living your dreams only in your head. The more you try, the bigger the possibility of success in finding your partner, dream job or your magic cone in a forest.

Let me tell you a fable about a unicorn who decided to enter a black forest in search of a magic pine cone.

It was a cold and rainy evening. Some snow was still lying on the streets and the rain drops were tentatively falling down from the sky. After the unicorn came back from work it was already 6:30 p.m. and it was dark outside. She had an idea to make hand-made Christmas decorations.  So she decided to climb up a mountain, which was near the place she lived, and go to the forest in search of magic pine cones for her Christmas decor. There she was at the top of the mountain standing by an entrance to the forest and a vast residential area with a nice view over Zurich city.

The unicorn looked around and saw that it was pitch black. How would she spot any cones there? It was like searching in the dark… She had her iPhone with her to shed some light onto a path, but it was a mere dot in the darkness of the night.  At that moment, she could’ve easily given up, coming up with thousands of excuses. “It is too dark to spot the cones“, “Some animals will eat me or harm me“, “I am afraid“, “It is dangerous for unicorns to go out alone at night, especially in a forest“, “I will not find any pine trees on my path“…

She told herself: “Unicorn, if you don’t go now, you will have to go another evening. The conditions will be the same. Moist, dark and snowy. Go for it now. Don’t wait for a better time, because the time is now. Take the chance. See that you’ve made it that far to enter the black forest“.

So she did. She was walking through the dark forest looking around to distinguish the contours of any pine tree, under which she could find some cones. But there were none. She needed to step away from the path and go nearer to the bushes. Full of fear and tired of walking and still searching she said a mantra in her thoughts: “Dear God and the universe, please help me to find my magic pine cones“.

Then, she said to herself “I will find them! I just need to search deeper and try unknown paths to widen my search“. She strolled through unknown parts of the dark forest and after a long and persistent search she stumbled across two very high and big pine trees. She looked down and directed some light onto the mossy ground. “There they are!!! I found my pine cones!”. Filled with joy and happiness she gathered the cones to her orange bag and set on a journey back home. The realisation that she found the magic cones in a dark forest made her feel that everything’s possible*.

The three magic ingredients were:

  • trust
  • persistence
  • patience

This is what made her find her unique cone. And for that night she was a unicone. A being aware of her super powers and potential to fulfil all her dreams.

The unicorn trusted she would find what she was looking for. With persistence and patience for going towards her goal of finding cones she actually made it.

Before you give up on your dream of finding the right partner or starting your business remind yourself the story of a magic unicorn and magic pine cones. There’s a little magic unicorn inside of you that will help you to go through the dark forest to find your magic cone.

Trust. Persistence. Patience.

With best wishes of finding your magic cone,

Plantation of Creativity Team

*the story is based on true events 

Perfect Christmas gift that no money can buy.

Whenever I hear “Last Christmas” by Wham at my gym (and believe me, they play it every time I go there) I ponder and wonder about the tons of people doing the evening Christmas shopping, searching for presents for their friends and family.

Fighting for the last pinky lipstick from Chanel and squeezing in between the rows to pick the best perfumes. Did you ever calculate how much time you spend to choose the perfect gifts? Not to mention the look on your face when you check your account balance after all the shopping. Oh yes 🙂

I didn’t wash my windows for Jesus. I didn’t clean my apartment so that it shines like in a hospital. My home is not ready for Christmas. It is not perfectly polished with a huge Christmas tree with Svarovsky Christmas baubles.  I didn’t buy the presents. Some would say “You are a rebel. You are ignoring Christmas traditions!” You know what I answer?

“I am ready. Ready to share special moments with the ones I love and I don’t need presents to show that”.

If you think that when you polish your apartment, cook 10 dishes and buy expensive presents your Christmas is gonna look like from “Home alone” and Coca-Cola ads, then maybe you didn’t take the most important thing into consideration – FEELINGS.

1. DO YOU KNOW HOW TO SHOW FEELINGS AND AFFECTION TO THOSE YOU LOVE?

Christmas is the perfect occasion to do so. For some of you the gifts can be the “love transmitter” . But is there a greater gift than the fact that you will spend some time with your family? Being every day in a rush, living far away, sometimes even in a different country or across the ocean…

When you visit your parents, they really don’t care much about the presents you will bring them. They are just so happy to see you, to talk to you, to be in your presence, to share the moments together. Even if it’s eating, sitting around and watching TV – if you do it together, it means far more than the most exquisite gift you have ever received.

2. SHARING IS THE GREATEST GIFT 

Life is about sharing the moments. Compare when you went alone for your holidays and when you went with your friend/wife/boyfriend etc. Which version do you remember better? I bet the one with the person you either liked or loved.

That time when you ate a crappy meal in a 4-star restaurant, but you had someone to smile to and laugh to. To enjoy a situation, which later turned into something to remember…

You can buy everything in this world except for TIME. That’s why giving time, spending time with the ones you love is the greatest gift of all. You cannot buy it and you have limited amount of it. We all die, don’t we? 

How often do you tell your close ones “I love you”? How often do you spend time with your girlfriend? How many times you take your daughter for a trip? When was the last time you visited your parents?

Another year is coming to an end. We won’t live again in this life. Maybe in another one, yes, with different people around. So maybe instead of spending a couple of evenings hunting for Christmas presents, why don’t we decide to spend some time with the persons who matter for us. No Chanel lipstick or a fancy watch will ever substitute it.

Wishing you a loving Christmas,

Plantation of Creativity Team

Do you judge people by their looks? Three reasons you should.

“Don’t judge a book by its cover”. This saying is quite well ingrained in our brain. However, we do exactly the opposite, as we are steered by our biology. We judge men who pass us by on the street, we judge if the pineapple is ripe enough by looking at its colour and skin. Every day we analyse thousands of things, which lighten up our brain just like the lightening on the stormy sky. But with one small exception – we hear no thunder. 

When you see a woman the first thing you do is you analyse (yes, big thanks to our subconscious brain) her looks and physical potential.

That’s how our ancestors (the cave men) where judging if a woman was able to give them healthy offspring. We, women, also judge men. Though physical looks is a little less important for us. What matters for women is whether the man they choose is able to protect them and their children. To take care of them. To be the real man who is not afraid of taking decisions.

We can cheat ourselves, but we cannot cheat biology.

1. WHEN YOU JUDGE LOOKS – YOU JUDGE CHARACTER

Physical appearance is important. It’s something more than just a neat face and a nice ass. Good looks is character, because nice asses and faces do not fall from the sky, nor they are given by a magic long-haired fairy.

The truth is that to look good you need to put some effort into it. A beautiful body, sexy ass and slim belly are not genetically passed on. At least, not in 80% of the cases. You simply need to work for it and this is the place where your character comes in and opens the doors. Will you have enough stamina and motivation to go through?

Marc was recently training a girl who was working in banking at Paradeplatz. He noticed that after the training she ate a bowl of a healthy salad, immediately followed by three chocolate bars. He saw it and simply uttered: “Once you pop, you can’t stop. Life is a no dolce vita baby. Either you go for the schoggi bars and cheat yourself that “you wanna be beautiful” or you get down to a plank and work these bars off“.

Character is the key to your looks.

2. IN HEALTHY BODY HEALTHY SPIRIT

Let’s discuss another example. This time of Maria, a good-looking woman in her forties working for a cryptocurrency company. “How would I feel arriving at work knowing I didn’t shower, didn’t eat my healthy breakfast and put the clothes I really dislike? Awful. I do it for myself to stay healthy and also to the people I love like my husband and daughter. Well, everybody enjoys being in the company of a good-looking and well cared-for women. Here in Switzerland, we call it “gut gepflegt”. We once were looking for office assistant and the manager employed one woman. On her first day she came to the office and she looked like taken straight from bed. Hair flying in all directions, no make up, no neat clothing. When I see such people I know they don’t take good care of themselves. Maybe lack of self-love is the issue…

A healthy and good-looking body is a sign of your good mental health. If you’re a couch potato everybody will be able to see it without having asked you. Your body and your attitude to it will show it.

3. SELF-LOVE AS A TOOL ENABLING LOVING OTHER PEOPLE

Have you ever wondered why you have your body? It serves you so well, it keeps you moving, it digests all the fast things which you sometimes feed it. Yet you fail to look after it. Your avatar is the cosmic suit for your soul. The way you look and the way you treat it shows how much you love yourself.

Yes, loving yourself. Do you remember the biblical commandment “Love your neighbour like yourself“? Hm. Loving yourself was put on the 1st position. Only then, you can love other people.

Taking care of your body and looks is an act of self-love. Stop for a moment and think: how much time per day you think about other people and how to please them? Then, compare how much time you devote to taking care of yourself. What was the last time you went to the SPA or to the gym?

The hard truth is that you don’t look like the best version of yourself, because you don’t love and accept yourself. If you did, you would know that you are a unicorn, not a sheep, and you deserve to be treated like one.

Heads up unicorns! Look in the mirror and say to yourself: “Yes, I am a unicorn. And I love myself”.

First step done. Congratulations! Now it’s time to hit the gym and burn the chocolate bars of the cage circling your looks.

Plantation of Creativity Team

The crisis of the third date. Why we fail at relationships?

Why it is so difficult for us to be with someone? Why so often we fail at relationships? The contemporary times are not the times of our grandparents, when all was kept simple.

Men were competing for women and the social roles were clear-cut. Nowadays the relationships can be compared to a visit at a supermarket. You pick & choose what you like. If something breaks, you buy new. We have no time for costly and timely repair, because all we care for is instant gratification.

Do you know the crisis of the third date?

Your eyes meet. Your smiles fly through the space between you. You suddenly make a step towards each other and meet yourselves half way. First date is amazing. Endless talks, physical attraction. So is the second time when you meet. It’s usually on the third date when things start to get edgy. Why?

Imagine a meeting of two beings. One from Orion and the other from the Pleiades. Two different beings coming from literally different worlds, different backgrounds. She doesn’t know if he likes Lindt chocolate with strawberries or the dark 80% cocoa. He does not know what type she is. A hide and seek game. Up to a certain point.

She is a dark chocolate. He doesn’t know about that. What differentiates the dark chocolate type from the strawberry filling is that you can make a delicious mousse au chocolate. But exlusively from the dark chocolate.  It’s, unfortunately, impossible to do it when you have a strawberry one.

You go and buy the strawberry chocolate. You eat it instantly. You know it tastes best when you consume it straight after unwrapping the packaging. It’s the same with men and women. Some are fit for a one night stand whereas the others… Hm.. They tend to include a nice surprise inside. When you go for the dark chocolate, you know that the modern cuisine knows many recipes for delicious desserts that can be made from it. All that you need is some time and effort, before your palate explodes with the unique taste of the mouth-watering mousse…

People have different expectations and different ideas about love and relationships. Sometimes Jack meets Jill and they go in different directions, because they are not compatible with each other. Not a burger and fries case. And sometimes, they are able to leave for Venus, in a get away car. Like a coffee and croissant. Or a platter of meat and cheese. Complementing each other.

Why relationships don’t work?

1. PEOPLE MAKE THE WRONG CHOICES

We know very well what we don’t want, but we are not sure about what we really want… Sounds familiar? The freedom of choice nowadays is so big that you have no idea what you should take. That’s why you cannot take a decision and stay like this for the most precious years of your life. Because you fail to decide if you go for a strawberry filling or a hazelnut one.

2. EXPECTATIONS ARE SOARING LIKE THE EMPIRE STATE BUILDING

On Instagram you see dolled-up beauties with D-size breasts and legs like from the catwalk. You see men with 6 packs with no food belly. Then you expect you will see that in the unplugged reality.  Wakie Wakie! The reality is neither a video game nor a porn movie.

3. YING-YANG IMBALANCE

In 2018 men are no longer hunters. At least some of them. My friend has lately attended a date. Sipping her coffee she heard him saying: “I like when women hunt me. It makes me feel good. I feel well taken care of and more attractive“. Hm. She never met him again. The truth is, the women like to be taken. Full stop.

When you are blooming with your femininity and delicacy, men come to you like bees attracted to the nectar of the flower. When you are a masculine woman no man would ever be interested in you, because he would instantly feel that you’re not a flower but more of a bee…

4. ONE MODEL OF RELATIONSHIPS NO LONGER EXISTS

“Why are doing this to me?!” “I don’t love you anymore”. “Get your shit together” – how many times have you been there?

We have as many definitions of what a “good relationship” is, as many people around you. Each one of us has a different view on how a successful relationship should look like. Now, an emerging couple faces the following questions, which in the old times, were considered obvious:

  • do you want to have children?
  • who will take care of home?
  • what country we will live in?
  • etc.

A good relationship is about how you treat the other person. If you don’t know how to show feelings and affection, if you don’t appreciate what you have or you organise your priorites in such a way that your partner is on the 55th position in your schedule then you didn’t get it right.

Cheap thrills or a chocolate mousse?

The choice is yours 😉

With the wishes of finding your dark chocolate,

Plantation of Creativity

How to exercise at home? The power of habit.

“I tried to exercise at home, but after the first push-up I couldn’t move up from the floor…” How many of you experience the feeling of helplessness when you finally decide to exercise?

Perhaps you will say: “I have kids, a full time job and a husband”. Yes. The famous excuse of us all. Even some of us who are healthy singles in their thirties are “too busy” to find time to exercise at home or to go to the gym…

Instead, you start your morning with a ‘schoggi gipfel’ (Swiss name for a chocolate croissant) and a bucket of coffee. Personally, I have nothing against gipfels, but a gipfel a day will certainly not keep the doctor away.

You know it so well. Do sport, eat healthy, meditate, think positive…. Yeah. But when? When is always the question, which is left with no good answer.

HOW TO START WHEN YOU’RE BUSY AS A BEE?

1. Write how your typical day looks like on paper.

Usually, the biggest part of our days takes our job. Write down your daily activities and you’ll see that you’ll find a 45 minutes window of time, even when you thought that it was impossible. How about making time at lunch break for the gym?

Example: 6:45 a.m. – wake up time, 8:30-18:00 work, 19:00 shopping/cooking/meeting friends/family time/watching TV/sitting on facebook etc.

Cut on some unproductive activities like sitting on facebook and hit the gym instead. Wake up one hour earlier and do some yoga at home. You don’t even need a yoga mat. Bare floor is really enough.

2. Write your goal.

“I wanna be more fit”  – it is too general. Why don’t you make it more concrete? “I want to lose 5 kg”, “I want to fit in size 38” , “I wanna be able to chase my children on the playground with no panting”  – they all sound better. Why? Because they are measurable. You can measure how many kg you lose and how many cm disappear from you belly. You measure the progress of your exercise. And this motivates you even more.

3. Install a new habit.

You wanna burn the fat that you have cultured like your own crop, right? Now the time has come to saw. Then you will reap. But before you explode with happiness with your new body, some dirty work is waiting to be done. Don’t deceive yourself that it will be easy. No. It will be very difficult. It all comes down to installing a new habit and simply going for it. Regularly.

GYM OR HOME?

Whether you decide to exercise in a gym or at home, it doesn’t matter as soon as you do the work. Wind up your sleeves and prepare for a hard work in the field. Imagine you’re a farmer and the field is your body.  Have you ever imagined what immense work does the farmer do from the moment he plants his crops until he harvests it?

INSTALLING A NEW HABIT

Are you acquainted with the theory of Pavlov’s dog? In short, this is a theory of classical conditioning. A certain stimulus can produce a response. We won’t get too much into details. What is important is that you can create your own theory of conditioning and adapt it for your fitness goals.

Imagine you want to instal a habit of exercising 30 minutes at home every day or going to the gym 3 times a week. How to motivate yourself? Sometimes images of slim and sporty body are not enough to keep you going. Then, you can introduce a stimulus. Just like Ivan Pavlov made it with the dog.

Think about something which could be a reward for sticking to your exercise plan and executing it. This can be eating your favourite dish or even a croissant. The thing is to treat it as something special to keep up your motivation. So no 3 croissants per day or no pizza after workout. But a home-made pizza once a week? Why not?

Last but not least, don’t push it too hard and remember to love yourself the way you are. Exercising is taking care of your body. That’s how you show your love to it.

Make progress. Not excuses. Make the time for your precious body, which is you. Get fit for life, not just for summer. Your “Pavlov’s dog” is definitely going to help you. No eat up without a sit up 🙂

Wishing you success in installing your new habits!

Plantation of Creativity Team

When you cannot sleep. The art of acceptance.

There comes the time when you cannot sleep. You toss and turn on your bed. You listen to podcasts to fall asleep, watch a movie, open the window to let some fresh air in. But it all doesn’t work.

Then, you look at your phone next to your bed – it’s 2 a.m. You think: “Gosh, I really need to get some sleep as I have to get up at 6:00 a.m. to go to work”. The thing is the more you stress, the less chances you have for a good sleep. Sounds familiar?

WHY WE CANNOT SLEEP?

Let me tell you a story.

Dora was a successful 35-year old woman. She had a steady job, was renting a nice apartment in the city center and was a beautiful woman. Many would kill for either her looks or her intelligence. Actually, they could kill for both. So, what’s the problem you might ask?

One night (and she was usually falling asleep at 10:00 p.m. max) she started to think about her life. Was she really happy? Was the job her dream job? Were the people she was giving her precious time and energy worth it? Why didn’t she yet have a partner or a successful relationship that she so much dreamt about?

Suddenly her brain became hyper-active with all those questions. Her heart was beating faster and faster and her body became hot like in a state of  fever. The thoughts in her head started dancing in a crazy way, just like the skeletons at the Halloween party she attended the night before.

Tired of tossing and turning she got up. It was 2:15 a.m. She washed the pile of the dishes after yesterday’s dinner, cleaned the fridge, went down to take the rubbish out and then cooked lunch for the next day. At 5:00 a.m. she tried again to fall asleep. Then, unlucky again she said to herself:

Okay Dora, you cannot fall asleep. Accept it. Read a book instead. Accept your emotions. Accept that you don’t like your job. Accept that you can choose not to work. Contrary to all women in your family. But it’s your life, Dora, and even if you go unemployed and betray the pattern of how women in your family behaved, you can act differently. Because it’s your life. You decide. You are the queen on your courtyard called Life. You can be faithful to no one else, but yourself“.

On the example of Dora you see what prevents us from having a good sleep:

  • thoughts circling in our heads
  • imagining scenarios, especially the bad ones
  • fears and emotions that we usually lock in our bodies and in our subconsciouss mind

 WHAT TO DO TO SLEEP BETTER?

  1. Accept your day. All the problems, emotions it triggered in you and it brought you.
  2. When you’re in bed try not to think. Limit the number of your thoughts, especially the negative ones.
  3. Imagine only the good things happening to you. Let your mind fly. Think about your biggest dreams and create a beautiful movie in your head with you as the hero of the movie.
  4. Take a pen and a piece of paper and write down what causes you the biggest stress. Then, write how you can accept it and what you can do about it.

Example:

STRESS – “My biggest stress is my job, which I don’t like. I’d gladly quit, but then I’ll have no money.”

ACCEPTANCE – “I accept that I don’t feel happy in my job. I accept all these negative emotions. I accept I chose my past jobs and I choose my future ones. I accept I am in charge of my life”.

SOLUTION – “What can I do if the fact that I don’t like my job causes me stress?”

  1. Go to work and in the meantime search for a one that would be my dream job.
  2. Quit and then create a plan of what I really want to do.
  3. Find after-work activities that will help you to calm down, relax and balance your work life.
  4. Your own solution different to the above 😉

Stressing would do you no good. While you stand in front of the mirror, preparing for work, tell yourself: “It’s just a job. I can change it because I am responsible for my life. And being responsible for your life is freedom!”.

Let me finish this article with a quote by Leonardo da Vinci:

“A well spent day brings happy sleep”.

Wishing you well-spent days ahead!

Plantation of Creativity Team

Why quitting your job is so hard?

Life is not a picnic. I guess you’d like to lie on the grass, eat strawberries, drink champagne and relax in the company of your friends all day long. Play ball with your dog, enjoy the sunrises and sunsets.

Instead, you leave your house at 7:00 a.m. to make it at 8:00 a.m. sharp to the shoffice (sheep office), where all the sheepshit is waiting for you like a delicious sausage is waiting for a dog. Meetings, deadlines, e-mails, coffee with co-workers, paperwork, projects, phone calls…

We all know it. You sacrifice 10 hours of your day for an employer in exchange for money and bonuses. Maybe you like your job, maybe not. But what to do if you realise that’s not the life you want to have? When the thoughts in your brain multiply like rabbits and scream “Run, (put your name in here), run!”.

We have been programmed from the moment we were born. Our parents were telling us: “go to school, get good grades, find a good job”. But what if we see that apart from our jobs we have time for nothing else? Or we are simply too tired to think about making something else and trying a new way of living?

If you’re unhappy with your job you will hear – “just quit and find a new one”. Yeah, if it would have been so easy, all of us would be unicorns and not sheep working in shoffices.

Why quitting your job is so hard?

Listening to the song “Bailando” by Enrique Iglesias I start to wonder. The words “Ya no puedo mas” (“I cannot take it anymore”) we utter all the time, complaining about our boss, low salary or slim chances of promotion. Yes. But why we still don’t quit? What keeps us from doing it?

1. FEAR

When you want to quit your job you will need to have a little tete-a-tete with this guy. He can take many faces:

  • fear of lack of money
  • fear of being redundant in society
  • fear of having failed
  • fear of survival

“If I’m unemployed, I’ll have no money to live. If I don’t have job then I’m not a good and worthy person. If I don’t work I won’t survive the next month” (for those who have no savings).

2. HABITS

After we finish our studies, we go to work. How many years have you been working now? 10? 20? 8? We are used to working and it became our habit. Just like smoking cigarettes or eating your favourite pizza. Therefore, it’s so difficult to allow yourself “not to work”. Even if this means staying on unemployment benefits and having money for our essential needs. It’s also the fear of the unknown. Our habit of working will be broken. Then, we won’t have a new habit yet, just an ocean of possibilities and questions.

What to do when you really wanna quit?

You might want to quit before you pop off on your working desk. You don’t want to have a burnout or a serious disease, do you?

That’s why it’s essential to have a plan. Before you quit. To strike a deal with the fear. To accept the bad guy and at the same moment, acknowledge the good guy inside of you.

No-one is unbreakable. We all face similar fears and emotions. But everyone of us has an internal power socket, which is like a fireplace. This place is our heart. The fire is burning there as long as we breathe. This is the place of our strength and cosmic power.

How to make a plan and prepare yourself for departure from your company? 

  • MEDITATE

Start from the heart. Focus on its beating and internal fire. Sit by your desk at work (you can close your room) and say in your thoughts: “Dear fear, I see you. I feel you all over my body. I accept you. I allow you to be. Just be. You are fear. You have no power over me. I am the one to decide”. Acceptance of your fears and emotions is the first step to prepare yourself for the move.

  • TAKE CARE OF YOUR FINANCES

Save up as much as possible. If you know that your termination period is 3 months, then prepare a plan of limiting your expenses and increasing your savings. You will feel more comfortable knowing you have the money to live on.

  • CLEAN UP YOUR WORK SPACE

Whether you work in open space or you have your own room for sure you have a desk with cupboards, where you keep all you stuff. Do a big clean-up. Throw away the unnecessary papers, old printed e-mails. Take your personal belongings home. Let the universe know that you are freeing the space around you and preparing for the move.

  • WRITE YOUR PROFESSIONAL GOAL

Write in your journal or on a piece of paper your dream job. It can be having your own business or working for a chosen company. Stipulate how much you want to earn. Read it every day or put the paper in a visible place. You can stick it on your refrigerator or computer screen.

We often forget that above the clouded sky there is always the sun. We don’t see it only because of external circumstances like weather conditions. Your internal sun is always shining. Even if it’s raining now in your soul.

Prepare well and go after your heart’s desire. A job is just a job. You have your whole life to live. Smile and remember about your internal sun. Quitting a job shouldn’t be harder than giving birth 🙂 Good luck!

Creative Workshops in Zurich

This is happy news! We have started a series of creative workshops in the city of Zurich, Switzerland.

The first workshops organized by the Plantation of Creativity were “Natural Cosmetics Workshops“.  How often do you calculate how much money you spend on beauty and cosmetics? Moreover, are the cosmetics you buy healthy and without chemical ingredients? Sometimes it is not easy to realize that actually a self-made face cream works better for your skin than the one for 200 CHF. I don’t need to mention the cost of a self-made one, do I?

The world of essential oils, precious oils, flower essences and other natural ingredients is a fascinating world. You can smell the forest, the greenery of the plants, the delicate petals of the roses… All of this in a beautiful women circle, where we share our beauty secrets and learn more about the needs of our bodies.

On the workshops you could learn how to make:

1) deodorant

2) face toner

3) make-up remover

3)  body scrub

It was a truly wonderful feeling to see the happy faces of the beautiful ladies who participated. We are very contented that as a “Plantation” we could help these women  to prepare their own eco and organic, totally natural cosmetics. And also “plant” the new ideas and new conscioussness about the natural body care.

Next “Natural Cosmetics Workshops (part 2)” are coming up on 11 November 2018, 10:00-13:00 at Viaduktstrasse 93 (Zurich Impact Hub). You can buy your tickets here.