Being Mindful…

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A few weeks ago I experienced a lot of busy-ness as I was preparing for my finals and sorting out my little daughter. My mind was full of calculations, strategies, assessments, thesis and reports. I had to make a change, and found this wonderful information that supported me:

  1. Stop multi-tasking: when you eat, you eat. When you walk, you walk.
  2. Take your time: make your actions deliberate
  3. Do less by prioritizing: it is all a matter of what is important and letting go of what is not.
  4. Plan your schedule and leave enough space between tasks: it takes away stress and gives you a break.
  5. Sit in silence: only 5 minutes of silence and breathing will do you, your thoughts and your body very good.
  6. Focus on the present: stop worrying about the future, or outcomes. Let it go and focus on what you do now.
  7. Be present: listen and talk to others by being completely in the now
  8. Eat to enjoy: savor your food and eat slowly. You deserve this break and take time to digest.
  9. Live your life: savor your life and slow down. Enjoy each and every moment even the stressful ones with deadlines and tasks.
  10. Meditating house chores: put cooking and cleaning into practice of mindfulness. Be present to every task you do and watch your thoughts then change your thought patterns consciously.

During this time I learned a lot about myself, my thought patterns and my insecurities especially on my incapabilities of what I’m currently doing. In fact, if I look at the events now, I am grateful for the challenges because I could locate these habitual patterns that kept me sort of ‘stuck’ in life. Practicing the above will not only support me in achieving that what I want but it will benefit me in the long run to living a mindful, stress-free and productive life. Try it 🙂

Why Am I So Stressed Out!

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Stress affects us all. Today I was victim of this uncomfortable emotion that drove me totally insane! All I wanted to do was to finish my work but unfortunately stress found its way into my system and confronted me with a tough lesson. At the end, I was so unproductive except for writing this post! 😉

Why do we stress? Stress is a small word that causes a lot of problems for so many. After my experience with stress (so far my entire postgraduate year!) I have to share with you that I am not managing stress very well. What is stress and why do we have it?

Apparently stress is necessary to survive in this life.  It can be a positive, negative or neutral experience. I found out that the key to handle stress lies in how we manage it when the feeling of stress comes our way.

Here are some interesting facts about stress: 

  • When you’re overwhelmed with too many things in your life or experiencing something out of the ordinary, stress is what you feel. 
  • Your body responds naturally as though you would be in danger (survival)
  • Your body experiences a release of hormones that makes your heart beats faster, you breathe faster and you get a boost of energy.  
  • The body’s response to stress is called the fight-or-flight mode. 

When it happens, this is what you can do:  (between brackets are my own examples) 

  • Acknowledge that you have stress (yes, about 8 out of 10!) 
  • Find out where it comes from (university and personal) 
  • Write it down and get a clear picture of your situation (thesis and assignment deadlines and my housework) 
  • Prioritize your situation and manage your time by using a time-table for that specific period (weekly timetable done for August with checklists) 
  • Find better ways to cope with situations like to call on support if you need to. (asked my mom and friend to support me with my housework and lighter projects)  
  • Learn from your past and make positive changes for your future. (saying no to social commitments!)
  • Go for a massage, meditate or have a relaxing weekend away in the country. (celebrate my achievements and make time for the most important person in my life…me!) 

I already booked that massage for next week and I am feeling better already! I hope you do too 😉

A Skill Set Called Leadership

source:*thenumberoftheblog.com

Each one of us are able lead. According to my dictionary, a leader is a person who leads or commands a group, organization or a country. If we all have leadership potential and abilities, then why make leadership training and requirements so complicated? Being a leader is not about power or controlling others, it is about installing direction and influencing others to follow that direction.

Research shown that these are the skills and qualities required for a successful leader in today’s world:

A leader must have…..

  • Vision 
  • Discipline 
  • Integrity 
  • Dedication 
  • Magnanimity
  • Humility 
  • Openness 
  • Assertive
  • Creative
  • Fairness 
  • Sense of humor 

I didn’t go into detail with the above skills as I believe that each person is unique and can add its very own description according to his or hers personality, strengths, way of life, etc. A great tool to support you is to practice self-awareness and practice leading yourself in your daily life. What I found useful is you can only tell others what to do if you are living that example. So practice what you preach and live authentically.

To summarise: “If you combine the above set of skills and qualities, create your own life story and ambitions and add your unique personality, you’re destined for success and others will follow. It is up to you, the individual to step out of the crowd and become that leader ;-)”