Cultural values of cultural clusters

AND WHY ARE THESE CONCEPTS IMPORTANT AND NEEDED TO BE SHARED

A tiny bit of knowledge regarding cultural intelligence CQ was detailed in my previous post and you can have read here – What I learned this week.

Understanding, using and increasing our cultural intelligence improves the way we relate to and network with diverse others. As we see a lot of migration, a lot of change regarding where people move to study or work or live or retire, we learn a lot about the specific country and customs there, but not all the times, we look deep into the cultural values of that place.

I believe what you will read next will help you not only know more about yourself, but also help you in being more empathetic with different people and cultures and with respecting one’s point of view and perspective. While I was reading through the book of Gaston Dorren (who is a polyglot), who wrote “Babel, Around the world in 20 languages”, I was able to get more insight into the different cultures of the world, how those people of other countries than me think and how their culture reflects in the language itself and it really opened my eyes to how unique and beautiful people are but also how little we actually know about the world. Cultural Intelligence highlights the importance of understanding different perspectives and then appropriately and effectively adapt our behaviour to obtain success. As an expat myself it is very hard to accept specific norms of the country I am in, because of personal and cultural value I grew with. But what you are about to read below will give a context or a form for better classifying your values, others’s values and then correctly identify in a new person or group of people or even in an organization these values. And why is this crucial? Because we, as human beings enjoy to feel at home wherever we are, we need comfort and familiarity. When we know our own values, we can better cope ourselves with others and we can expand on our self-knowledge even further, we can understand ourselves better and then it will become so much easier to cooperate, collaborate and work on our desired achievements.

There are 10 cultural clusters – Nordic Europe, Anglo, Germanic Europe, Eastern Europe, Latin Europe, Latin America, Confucian Asia, Southern Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa and Arab.

Over the decades a number of scholars and researchers identified cultural value dimensions and general geographical clusters for these cultural value dimensions. As a disclaimer there is a wide range of variation in cultural values that individuals in the same cultural cluster may actually express. This means an individual’s personal orientation may not reflect the generalised tendency of a specific geographical cultural cluster. At the same time, research does reveal that a large number of people within these geographic clusters do share similar values. So it can be a starting point to begin understanding the similarities and differences between your preferred values and the cultural values of others.

Cultural clusters provide possible insight into where we may likely find the presence of a cultural value dimension. We have the opportunity to use cultural intelligence to determine if diversity or differences in cultural values might explain a challenge, a misunderstanding, confusion or miscommunication. Using CQ provides an opportunity to recognize difference and diversify in order to adapt our behavior which facilitates effective and appropriate interaction across diversities.

Cultural intelligence or CQ is defined as the capability to be effective across different cultural context, including national, ethnic, generational, organizational and other contexts. The culturally intelligent have a good grasp of overarching patterns that exist across various cultures around the world. It’s not that the culturally intelligent are walking encyclopedias who can spout off random facts about any culture on the planet. That’s impossible. But they have a macro understanding of cultural similarities and differences, something we identify as CQ knowledge – one of the four capabilities of cultural intelligence. CQ knowledge is the degree to which you understand how culture influences how people think and behave; it’s also your level of familiarity with how cultures are similar and different.

One way to improve your CQ knowledge is to learn the key characteristics of 10 global cultural clusters, which are large cultural groupings that share some core patterns of thinking and behaving. The countries and groupings of people within each cluster typically share a common history and they often share similar geography, language, religion or cultural values. The 10 clusters are simply a place to begin comparing one predominant worldview with another. As you develop a deeper understanding of the clusters’ similarities and differences, you’ll find yourself more adept at handling all kinds of intercultural situations. Why talk about clusters, and overall patterns and norms for people from various cultures? Because there’s value in something that cross-cultural psychologists Joyce Osland and Allan Bird describe as “sophisticated stereotypes” – broad comparative differences based on empirical intercultural research. Sophisticated stereotypes such as those that stem from understanding the 10 cultural clusters, are most helpful when they are:

-used to compare various cultures rather than to understand the behavior of a singular culture

-consciously held

-descriptive not evaluative

-used as a best first-guess prior to having direct information about specific people

-modified based upon further observation and experience

The cultural value dimensions

Individualism – Collectivism

An individualist is motivated by personal rewards and benefits. Individualist persons set personal goals and objectives based on self. Individualistic workers are very comfortable working with autonomy and not part of the team.

The collectivist is motivated by group goals, Long term relationships are very important. Collectivistic persons easily sacrifice individual benefit or praise to recognize and honor the team’s success.

The generalized geographic clusters of individualism may be found in Anglo countries, Germanic Europe and Nordic Europe. Geographic clusters for collectivism are often located in Arab countries, Latin America, Confucian Asia, Southern Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Low and high-power distance – is a lot about authority and hierarchy.

A person with low power distance thinks the less formal the better. They prefer to forego formalities and are willing to respectfully question or challenge authority. Titles and positions of authority and leadership are not important to a low power distance person.

A high-power distance individual feels obligated to follow strictly the chain of command and is far less likely to question authority or leadership. Respecting and honoring the position of leadership is highly important in a high-power distance society.

An example is in Germanic Europe, a low power distance culture cluster, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and her husband live in a very modest flat in Berlin. On the other hand, Southern Asia is a high power distance culture cluster. In Southern Asia using formal titles are very important and not to be ignored. High power distance mandates that people of higher status receive special seating at dinning or in a business meeting.

Low versus high uncertainty avoidance

The cultural value dimension of low or high uncertainty avoidance resides in the question of should we try to control the future or just let the future happen? How shall we deal with the future when the future can never be known for sure?

Low uncertainty avoidance persons act first and then get the information. They are very comfortable with ambiguity and uncertainty. Cultural value clusters of low uncertainty avoidance work hard to minimize rules and laws that infringe on people’s diverse perspectives.

High uncertainty avoidance often requires rigid codes of behavior and beliefs. There may easily be intolerance of unorthodox behaviours and ideas. Persons with high uncertainty avoidance appreciate explicit instructions. They often rely on procedures and policies to reduce the change of things getting out of control.

Anglo countries, Eastern Europe and Nordic Europe have a preference for low uncertainty avoidance. Latin Europe and Latin America emphasize planning and predictability or high uncertainty avoidance.

Cooperative and competitive dimensions

A person with a cooperative cultural value emphasizes collaboration, nurturing and family.

A person who has a competitive value dimension emphasises competition, assertiveness and achievement.

The cooperative versus competition cultural value dimension considers how you wish to achieve results and accomplish goals. A cooperative person believes the best way to accomplish an objective or reach an outcome is by getting people to work together. However, a competitive person believes people are best motivated to reach a goal when competition is involved in the process.

If we consider geographic cultural dimensions, Nordic Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa prefer cooperation. Germanic Europe and Anglo countries emphasize a competitive cultural dimension. In the middle between cooperative and competitive, we find Arab countries, Confucian Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, Latin Europe and Southern Asia.

Short versus long term

This cultural dimension is based on how a culture views time and the importance of the past, present and future. Short term is the cultural dimension which emphasizes immediate outcomes and success now. Long term planning and success later guide the long-term cultural dimension.

Confucian Asia is in the long-term geographic cluster. It is interesting that China is said to be planning for the next 500 years while other nations have a 5-year plan. Anglo-countries, Arab nations, Eastern Europe, Nordic Europe, and Sub-Saharan Africa are in the short-term geographic cluster. Eastern Europe, Latin America and Latin Europe use both a short-term and a long-term dimension.

When we use a long-term dimension, we focus on the future. We value persistence. We easily delay social success. Personal and emotional gratification is delayed.

A short-term orientation cares more about immediate gratification. The past and present is more important than the future. A short-term orientation values the current social hierarchy. Meeting current social obligations is emphasized by a person with a short-term perspective.

Low and high context

In a low context cultural dimension encounter, the emphasis is on explicit and direct communication. In a high context experience, the communication is indirect and the tone of voice and context of the communication is most important.

The individual with a low context orientation values direct communication. He or she choose their words very carefully. Logic is important.

A low context person believes in clearly saying what they mean and totally meaning what is said.

A high context and indirect person will pay attention to what is not said as much as what is said. A high context person will notice the context such as where people are seated and how individuals are dressed. A preference for high context means you need to constantly read between the lines. High context persons speak indirectly to peers and tend to avoid conflict that is head on.

Geographic clusters that prefer low context and direct communication are Anglo countries, Germanic Europe and Nordic Europe. Arab countries, Confucian Asia, Southern Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa emphasize a high context with an indirect communication cultural dimension.

Being versus doing

Being and doing is the extent to which you derive meaning from activity and being productive.

A high doing person wants to be productive on a day off or holiday. A doing culture emphasizes being busy and meeting goals. A being culture stresses the quality of life and work-life balance.

In a doing culture getting a job done takes precedence over personal relationships. You may miss a family member’s birthday celebration because you have work to do. You earn status through the work you do. Status is not based on your age, seniority or birthright. Deadlines and schedules are emphasized in a doing culture. Work-related emails are often answered 24h a days and 7 days a week if the person emphasizes doing over being.

In a being culture, status is automatic and difficult to lose. Status is often based on your age, birth and seniority. Relationships take precedence over tasks or getting a job done. Much time is spent getting to know someone before agreeing to do business with them. Greeting and farewell rituals are considered important. A work-related email is probably not going to be answered by a being orientated person if it is received during vacation.

Geographic clusters of doing cultural dimension are found in Anglo countries and Germanic Europe.

Being geographic clusters are located in Arab countries, Latin America, Nordic Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa.

Universalism and particularism

The cultural dimension of universalism versus particularism is the same as rules versus relationships. Universalism is about the rules and standards. Particularism is about the unique specifics and relationships.

In a culture that prefers universalism, the rules and standards apply to everyone the same. In a culture that emphasizes particularism, there are unique standards and exceptions. Applications of the rules depend on the unique exceptions and the relationships of the persons involved.

A person with a universal perspective applies all procedures the same universally to ensure equity and consistency. A particular oriented person encourages flexibility by adapting to particular situations and making exceptions to the rule.

Rules and standards that apply equally to everyone are typical of Anglo countries, Germanic Europe and Nordic Europe. An emphasis on the specifics allowing room for unique adjustments to rules based on relationships is common in Arab countries, Confucian Asia, Southern Asia and Sub-Saharan Asia.

Non-expressive versus expressive

The communication cultural value that prefers to emphasize non-emotional communication and to hide feelings is the neutral or non-expressive cultural dimension. The affective or expressive cultural dimension prefers expressive communication and sharing feelings.

The geographic cultural value clusters for the neutral or non-expressive cultural value dimension are Confucian Asia, Eastern Europe, Germanic Europe and Nordic Europe. Anglo countries and Southern Asia emphasize both non-expressive and expressive cultural values. Arab countries, Latin America, Latin Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa prefer affective, expressive communications and sharing feelings.

Monochronic and polychronic dimensions

A monochronic persons sees time as a commodity. It is quantifiable and there is limited supply of it. You can waste time.

The polychronic individual considers time to be limitless and unmeasurable. Time is a servant and a tool we use.

Monochronic and linear cultural dimensions emphasize doing one thing at a time, always being on time, events are scheduled to start on time, and work time and personal time are separated. Anglo countries, Germanic Europe and Nordic Europe emphasize the monochronic and linear cultural values.

Confucian Asia, Eastern Europe and Southern Asia emphasize both a monochronic linear and a polychronic non-linear as cultural values.

Polychronic and non-linear cultural values emphasize multi-tasking, find interruptions very acceptable, and easily combine work with personal life. Arab countries, Latin America, Latin Europe and Sub-Saharan prefer the polychronic non-linear cultural value dimension.

Individuals have personal preferences or individual value orientations. Sometimes individual orientations reflect one’s nationality or ethnicity or diversity but not always. Cultural value orientations can be grouped into general geographical clusters. Knowledge of these cultural value dimensions and 10 of the largest cultural groupings can sometimes give us insight into potential cross-cultural misunderstandings and challenges.

The 10 largest cultural groupings in the world are:

ANGLO – Australia, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom, United States and etc

ARAB – Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and etc.

Confucian Asia – China, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, South Korean, Taiwan and etc

Eastern Europe – Albania, Czech Republic, Greece, Hungary, Mongolia, Poland, Russia and etc

Germanic Europe – Austria, Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, etc

Latin America – Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico and etc

Latin Europe – France, French-speaking Canada, Italy, Portugal, Spain and etc

Nordic Europe – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and etc

Sub-Saharan Africa – Ghana, Kenya, Namibia, Nigeria, Zambia, Zimbabwe and etc

Southern-Asia – India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines, Thailand and etc

These are simply places where you are likely to find a significant presence of the cultural values and are not to be taken as stereotype, they are created and researched to help us all better understand each other as we live in this globalised world, where many different people from a variety of cultures come together in the big cities.

Have you been able to identify which of the 2 options from the 10 cultural value dimensions you personally and culturally are? Tell me in the comments!

What I have learned this week

THE BEST IDEAS FOR YOU TO GET INSPIRED AND DISCOVER MORE INSIGHTS FOR YOUR MIND TO FLOURISH

I will market this as the curated source of latest fresh knowledge, motivation and inspiration and the delightful recycled source of creative content out there that I consumed for your enjoyment and usefulness.

Starting off with KNOWLEDGE TO BOOST YOUR BRAIN POWER: check this out – a new notion – cultural intelligence.

Cultural intelligence or CQ is defined as the capability to be effective across different cultural contexts – including national, ethnic, generational, organizational and others. The culturally intelligent have a good grasp of overarching patterns that exist across various cultures around the world. It’s not that the culturally intelligent are walking encyclopedias who can spout off random facts about any culture on the planet. That’s impossible. But they have a micro understanding of cultural similarities and differences, something which is identified as CQ Knowledge – one of the four capabilities of cultural intelligence. CQ Knowledge is the degree to which you understand how culture influences how people think and behave, it’s also your level of familiarity with how cultures are similar and different. While this kind of understanding alone doesn’t make you culturally intelligent, it is a vital part of becoming effective across different cultural contexts. I am still learning about this concept and expanding my vision on the topic also because working in a fraud detection department requires me to have this knowledge in prediction and understanding the potential threat. Why is this important to be know? The ability to understand different perspectives and then appropriately and effectively adapt our behaviour is now required for success. CQ is unique in that it predicts our capabilities to work with diversity and differences. Understanding, using and increasing our cultural intelligence improves the way we relate to and network with diverse others. There are 4 specific capabilities comprising CQ. The first is CQ drive or motivation, second CQ knowledge or cognition, next is CQ strategy or metacognition, and the last is CQ action or behaviour. Cultural intelligence can be developed and improved. In the next weeks I will be sharing more on this topic, it is a course I am taking on FutureLearn (something similar to Coursera) and I think it is an important subject given that CQ provides an opportunity to recognise or determine if diversity or differences in cultural values might explain a challenge, misunderstanding, confusion or miscommunication and these are needed to be tackled to effectively facilitate human interaction across diversities.

Linkedin Courses taken (2) – Leading like a futurist – I would not say that you necessarily need to be a leader or manager to profit from the concepts and ideas of this course, it is needed for all of us to reinvent our lives and understand the world we live in, from a different perspective. First the course explored what is a futurist. A futurist is a person that can see, shape and share the future. A futurist creates and communicates future opportunities. A futurist is not afraid to be a visionary. The skills needed by a futurist are that he/she is keen and curious observers, they seek diverse perspectives, they represent the finders of clarity in the complex, they are comfortable with ambiguity and they are compelling communicators. And all these skills are skills that the world we currently live in NEEDS MORE OF, and will be in much more need of because of the emerging trends and technologies. By learning more about what a futurist is and moreover about a futurist leader, you expose yourself to more opportunities, either because you can create them or you see them and can ride them. There were lots of amazing ideas in the course, and one of them was the concept of a future shaper. A future shaper has a mindset regarding the way we see or could see the future and a future shaper is able to notice more of what’s around in the world, is able to use everything at hand (knowledge, trend, etc) and is capable of letting go of being right and letting go of being the smartest in the room. These practices create a mindset of anticipation, evaluation of possible futures and analysis of their viability and sustainability, constant observation and scanning of the external environment. Mindset is at the heart. Mindset of individuals multiply to create a mindset of a community, and that community can inspire and connect with other communities, thus making possible the future one person thinks of or “dreams” of, to become if not a reality, then at least to bring more awareness of its potentiality. A futurist is able to communicate the future in a compelling, emotional way to motivate people into taking action with the vision stated. That’s why it’s a leader. A futurist leader or a future shaper is seeking to make us mindful of our capability to see, shape and share the future that we want to be part of. Once you gain that mindset, you become yourself a futurist or future shaper. Really great course, highly recommend it and to give you a glimpse of what the future holds for us in the next decade, I have selected some future trends, basically copy pasting what they wrote, because it is very WOW (that I discovered online on WGSN, which is a leading trend forecaster for insights and inspiration around the globe) for all of us to be waiting for:

“1.BORO – made, do and mend. – In an effort to be conscious consumers, we are shopping less and buying “better”. But what does this mean for the things we already own?This Japanese method “BORO” means born-out-of-necessity patchworking and will become the norm in the next decade. We will see a rise of making do and mending – it will be an honour to give attention to those items in need of repair. Well-loved but worn pieces will become a blank canvas for creativity, self-expression and playful mending techniques, with these new details as the main features of garments. On a side note, this does remind me of another interesting Japanese technique named “kintsukuroi” that means to repair with gold, which is the art of repairing pottery with gold or silver lacquer and understanding that the piece is more beautiful for having been broken. And with these notions, there goes a little bit of CQ knowledge, Japanese are very careful and conscious and considerate about life and everything in life, it looks so.

2.NANOSWIMMERS – “Beauty bots” moving through your bloodstream. Taking “beauty from within” to the next level, tiny robots will be used to deliver ingredients, nutrients or medicines from inside the body. While the technology, which as been developed by the medical industry to avoid invasive procedures, is still in its infancy, the applications for beauty are promising. By the end of the decade, injectable “beauty bots” could well be on offer along with other non-invasive cosmetic treatments.

3. FROZEN FOOD – convenience food, but made wellness. Frozen food will experience a renaissance as consumers turn to it as a convenient way of eating that also reduces waste. Wellness – focused consumers have adopted frozen fruit and vegetables in smoothies as a convenient way of introducing micronutrients into their diets. They are now open to trying new, healthy frozen meals and ingredients. Frozen food start ups are providing plant-based or gourmet meals and ingredients to update convenience food. People will also start challenging consumerism and they will focus more on self-sufficiency as they explore how to survive during times of extreme disruption in a decade of environmental and societal turmoil.

4.INTIMACY SCHOOLS – How to be human 101 (actually in my country, Romania, there is one educational leader offering these type of classes related to relationships already) – The intimacy recession means we’re increasingly more connected to our phones than to each other. The 2020s will witness an active backlash to the loneliness epidemic being faced in many developed societies, driven by our smartphone addictions. Much like the rise of mindfulness as a trend, we will go to class to learn how to reconnect with other people, discover how to be vulnerable and build deeper bonds (romantic or platonic) with each other. School is now in session and it;s teaching you how to be human again.”

I have some honourable mentions which seem very far-fetched, but briefly as taken from their instagram account (WGSN)

“5.DIGITAL FRAGRANCES – Machines will learn how to smell – Downloading sounds was so 2010s – by 2030, it’ll be all about downloading smells. Thanks to advanced algorithm technologies, we can smell online.

6.MADE IN NATURE – trees grown directly into furniture. Packaging grown from mushroom. Forget “made in”, by 2025, products made “by” nature will be the new luxury.

7.PSYCHODERMATOLOGY – leveraging the gut-brain-skin connection. Stressed out? Your skin is feeling it too. Modern dermatology will step in to ease skin conditions related to modern day stresses, blurring the lines between our mental and skin health. Welcome to the age of psychodermatology, where it is about the emotional as much as the physical.

8.POWERING DOWN – Rest, recover and recalibrate. Guilty of spending too much time online? A new wave of technology is coming to help us turn off and recharge. Radiaton-blocking materials will help protect us from digital emissions, giving us time to recalibrate and reboot.

9.NIKSEN – doing nothing on purpose, but without purpose. Permission to do nothing: granted. In a world where burnout is so common it has become a classified medical condition, this wellness movement acknowledges that slowing down is essential. Block out your calendars to do nothing and feel good about it.”

Now, NIKSEN really ties beautifully to the other short course I took on Linkedin this week named “How to slow down and be more productive“. It was an eye opening packed with knowledge course that I related so much to and found profoundly life changing for me at least. Even though the concept of slow and the SLOW movement is something I was aware of for years now, I realised I was not practising it. Currently, you may feel as I feel too, that we are living in a state of impatience. I will re-write this. We are living in a state of IMPATIENCE. Not emergency, but impatience to do this and that, to be as fast as possible to go through workload, to schedule meeting after meeting, to be in a constant state of “working” and of ticking boxes when we have done certain tasks, forgetting about taking a moment, not a break, but a moment to give our brain breathing time to get prepared for the next task, meeting, deadline or activity. When we jump mindless to activity from another activity, without allowing ourselves time to digest what just happened we experience what the speaker of the course named to be “the missing minute”. The missing minute is required for us to recover the space between the things we do.

The course is opening our eyes and minds to re-program our brains to do things more patiently – don’t work too quickly, take the extra time – add a touch of more patience to it and take the time to cool down. THE MORE IMPORTANT THE WORK IS, THE MORE COOL DOWN TIME WE NEED TO HAVE. Take a minute and reclaim the missing minute by making a careful choice without feeling pressured by others to make a decision, to finish a specific task, to do an activity, to do your job. The course is focusing on raising awareness around separating what is happening from what is required for our success. Slowing down is about finding that reasonable expectation that others have of you to finish the job and then stick to it. This means you can work comfortably in your own pace and you can do the job between the requests and expectations decided together with the other person you are working with. For this to actually work, you also need to show others that they may be rushing mindlessly too, without knowing, yet.

To cultivate awareness of the moments when you are rushed, you can ask your superior or leader or yourself “How long can you comfortably wait until I respond? When is the latest this can be done? Do you need the whole project or a part of it by that date?” This gives the other person thinking time to help them pause as well and become more present and more capable of making decisions about deadlines. Careful questions can lead to constructive conversations.

Reclaim your missing minute and start by taking 1 minute now without doing anything. No scrolling, no browsing, no reading, no replying, no copy pasting. Just put the timer on your phone for 1 minute and stand still. I have done this and that 60 seconds seemed like an eternity. Amazing insight from that alone only! And, in this way you can understand why the NIKSEN prediction will occur. There’s a need and a market.

Quote of the week – Outgrow the person you were yesterday.

Fun thing of the week – I discovered tiktok (well, just downloaded the app to see what’s all about and why GaryV says it’s the next big thing- and IT’S FUN) and on the platform I discovered this new word that millennials use which is “boomer” – which is actually the short for “baby boomer” by which this new generation refers us for, because “we do not understand them and criticise them way too much”(especially regarding the use of their mobiles). And the meme is “OK boomer”.

So, “boomer” what will you be taking away with you from this blog post? What have you learned from what I have learned?

10 things that kill women energy

The re-invention of yourself is an ongoing quest that is emotional, physical and spiritual. For us, women, to tap into our feminine energy is vital and it is about being committed to ourselves, first and foremost, and this means being committed to our own spiritual and personal growth, living with intention and passion while striving to contribute to our immediate world and the world at large in a positive and meaningful way.

Your life and my life is our vision quest, and so it’s up to each of us to design it, it’s about how we conduct and carry ourselves onto the path we have selected and most of all, how we follow through. To tap more into our feminine energy we also need to know the things that actually kill our femininity.

Here are 10 things that kill women feminine power and energy.

  1. A woman should only communicate with people that love her and that she loves back. She should not allow for herself any areas of conflict in any way. A woman should not communicate with those that she does not like, those people that we all have in our lives that are simply disagreeable. One of the worst mistakes a woman can do is to do something that she does not like or enjoy doing because this consumes a great amount of feminine energy which kills her spirit. This does not mean that you should not communicate at all as obviously this is quite impossible in today’s society. This refers to the fact that women should be very brief when discussing with someone unpleasant to them. When we try to make ourselves pleasant to other people we might dislike or find that we need to dissimulate we do not like them, we waste our feminine energy.
  2. Lack of personal care and physical exercise to take care of our bodies. A woman that does not take care of herself cannot take care of anyone. It’s cheap to look decent and groomed and neat, tidy. A man will always admire a women that is elegant, that is well groomed, a woman that loves herself and that has respect for herself. When a woman fails to take care of herself, she won’t feel good with her own self, and her energy drops and she starts emanating negativity or she is rejected by other people. A woman has to shine and she must not blur herself by self damaging her own feminine power by not caring for herself.
  3. Lack of emotions. Emotions belong to those that have a soul and feel all emotions. We all have emotions because we have a soul. Emotions cannot all the time be just positive. But you also have to be careful about who you let to see your painful spot as you might be vulnerable and they might hit you right there. Live your emotions. Women cry at movies, women laugh and express themselves and they must do this, and live fully, be cheerful, be positive, be alive and enjoy moments as this is something that makes a woman live in her energy, in her feminine power. Femininity is all about expressing yourself with no fear.
  4. Women must have hobbies. Women must be creative, they need to create beauty, energy around them. Even if she is only cleaning the house or doing a hobby she is owning her creativity. She is doing that hobby to recharge herself. Expressing her creativity is filling up her energy with more feminine and positive energy. Lack of hobbies is a thing that can diminish and eventually kill a woman’s energy. If a woman does not create something, even as small as it may be, then her energy stagnates. Anything that a woman does with her own hands is called and it is tapping into her creativity. When she is creating something beautiful, whether that’s doing the dishes, planting a flower, anything at all feminine wise, when she does anything that is beautiful after she puts her effort into it, she becomes beautiful.
  5. The need to dominate and to rule is killing women’s feminine energy. When the woman has a responsible man aside her, she knows she can rely on him and she won’t have this urge to rule or do it herself. No matter how you think about it, there are things that are exclusive to men and things that are exclusive to women.
  6. Women should not become slaves for their men. They need to respect themselves and yes, the woman maintains the relationship, the woman takes care of the home, the woman caters more for him, however, the man is the one that should bring in money and he should cater for her in other ways. But if she fails in this, if she is too picky with him, if she keeps on taking care of him as if he is incapable of doing so, treating him as a boy instead of a man, taking the role of the mother way too often, she will kill her energy, her femininity. No real man wishes to have beside him a slave that does it all. That’s why men rule and women obey. It’s more to talk here, but there is also the common sense and good manners code.
  7. Women must be unique. Women should not compare themselves with other women as they kill their own energy by doing so. A woman should never see in another woman a rival, a potential threat to her home and that can only occur and be felt if the woman is fully accepting herself and embraces her own feminine power and her own unique feminine goddess energy. The reason this does not happen is because women, instead of being together, they hate each other, they want to be someone else, as they fear or they lack the knowledge to discover their own uniqueness. When women compare themselves with other women they consume a lot of energy.
  8. A woman should not have the desire to fight for something to prove she is better, she is more beautiful and she is more intelligent. A woman does not need to prove this, and a woman should not feel she is competing with any other woman, as this activity only drains life out of a woman and our of her unique feminine energy.
  9. A woman must communicate with other women. This is a powerful source of energy for a woman. Obviously, this is with who she likes to be around. A woman should have some very closed friends with whom she speaks as she takes a lot of energy by speaking with other females. Women can only gain this energy by being around and communicating to other women.

10. Lack of personal space and time. A woman must have time for herself, for her own businesses and dealings in life. Always make sure you do something for YOURSELF and not for others or for something or to someone to prove to, as mentioned a woman should not compete with other women and should not feel the need to compete because she is unique, different and perfect as she is, simply because she is taking care of herself and she is already doing everything that she enjoys, she is creative, she makes time for herself and for her hobbies and she is doing only what she likes.

Remember: The 2 most important days in your life are the one you are born and the day you find out why.

A million likes won’t make you like yourself. A flower does not cry when you do not notice it. Its worth was never dependant on your attention. It is beautiful whether you see it or not. You are that FLOWER. We, women are flowers. Pour all your love into you. Fall in love with yourself, again and again.

As you take care of your energy, your energy will take care of yourself.

Sometimes, what is meant for you, can’t find you because you are simply not being yourself. That’s why it’s important to tap into your own creative feminine divine power. “Be the moon and inspire people, even when you’re far from full”, I read the other day.

Remember you are the source of your own power.

Blogmas 7 – Cognitive Distortions to Restructure by the end of 2019

People will do anything, no matter how absurd to avoid facing their own souls, once wrote Carl Jung. We are all biased with different thinking patterns and brain shortcuts that we created in time to have time to cope with life and change. Sometimes these cognitive distortions make it hard for us to progress in life, and the universe keeps throwing at us the same lessons in different formats, and we still don’t get it. So, this December, and Blogmas, by the end of the year, let’s work together to restructure those mental biases we all deal with.

There are 13 common cognitive distortions that I will be briefly explaining and you could work on one at a time until the end of 2019 to make sure you step into 2020 with a new fresh thinking.

1.Overgeneralising – You see a constant, negative pattern based on one event. Maybe you think that if you did not get the position you applied for, you are not good enough and you think there is no point in applying to a future job ad. But, you base your future thoughts and eventually behaviours around a single event. Step out of your mind and don’t take your thoughts so seriously.

2.Blaming / Denying – You blame others for your problems or mistakes OR you blame yourself when it wasn’t entirely your fault. You could say that you did not obtain that job because you did not have connections or because the company liked a specific type of personality or that you did not prepare for the interview. If you indeed did not prepare for the interview, that’s easily fixed, next time, you know what you need to focus more on, since you passed the CV screening. If you believe that the company or another person is to blame for your failure, think again, maybe you should consider that when you put the blame entirely on others for something you did not achieved, it could be that you are avoiding to feel the real emotions behind your lack of success. The real emotion behind that could lie in the truth that you did not prepare enough, did not have enough experience, did not have enough of confidence to show it, and so on. Always try to see beyond the surfaced emotion and train of thoughts.

3.Shoulds – you have a rigid code of conduct dictating how you and others should behave. You criticise yourself harshly when you fail to follow these rules. Should lists are so dangerous to the mind. They are transforming you into a perfectionist, into a critic and that’s not at all equal to self-love and mindfulness and good judgement. On the contrary, shoulds are infectious and must be replaced with something more kind to ourselves: the right to make mistakes, the patience to learn from one’s mistakes and the determination to challenge an existing no-longer serving belief, such as the “should theory”. Also, to gain more understanding on the topic, have a read here on the crossroads between should and must in the pursuit of happiness.

4.All or nothing thinking – You see things as absolutes, no grey areas. This ties very well with the one above. Give yourself permission to make mistakes and to understand that all things come and go. There is no white or black, as much as we would all want to shortcut things that we go through, and categorise it to make our lives easier, life is complex, so, so is our thinking.

5.Negativity bias – You notice all the negatives, but fail to notice the positives. For this one, sometimes, our parents have raised us with their own biases as their own knowledge to keep us safe from the world and to protect our future reckless choices by implementing a fear emotion in us every time we might get attracted by adventurous thoughts or behaviours. It’s ok to let go of that. Failure is a bruise, not a tattoo and even if a positive attitude does not spare you of negatives happening in your life, you should know, we need negatives too to develop the positives. There is something good in every bad, and something bad in every good. There is no white or black.

6. Catastrophising – You always expect the worst. As much as this could be a self defensive mechanism, and sometimes it turns out to be good to have this idea in your head, as you actually get surprised by life, and something resplendent is thrown at you, this should be rarely thought or used. You cannot always expect the worst. You are made up of an energy of your thoughts. If you only believe bad things will happen, guess what will you be attracting in your life? Remember, you are energy. I will share with you a secret. Remember when you tell yourself or to others: “Don’t forget to… something?”. Do you remember what actually always happens? You forget or they forget. Why? Because you have trained your mind into a NO suggestion. Do NOT remember to do that. Instead, use the phrase “Remember to do this/ I will remember to….”. Use it and let me know how it worked for you in the comments! Also, to change this thinking pattern, I will give another example. Let’s say you think – “I can’t stand this” – to restructure this cognitive distortion you could say “I am severely distressed, but I will handle it. I can manage it!”.

ONLY GROW THOUGHTS IN YOUR BRAIN THAT YOU WOULDN’T MIND PUTTING IN A VASE.

7.Labelling – You label yourself negatively. You always speak of yourself with use of negative words. Sometimes we do this, because we lack confidence in ourselves and we tend to use less than positive thinking and sayings so that whoever hears us, can actually demount our beliefs. But when you are alone, there is no one to tell you otherwise. You never believe the mirror, and if you did, it would anyway tell you the opposite of what you want to actually hear, because you are saying it to yourself, in the hope you can cling to something that can save your day. Again, as Carl Jung pointed out, “people would do anything, to avoid facing their own souls.” Stop using bad words, such as poor, inferior, unacceptable, imperfect, defective, faulty, careless, miserable, rotten, incompetent, inept, awful, appalling, terrible, pathetic, useless, lousy, deficient and start replacing them with superb, jubilant, adorable, alluring, attractive, blooming, celestial, classy, dandy, elegant, divine, enchanting, exquisite (my favourite word) fancy, fabulous, gorgeous, incomparable, irresistible, magnetic, mesmerising, ravishing, splendid, sublime, top-notch. Because you are all of that and beyond. You are beautiful. And you deserve to live your life knowing that.

8.Magical thinking – You think everything will be better when … (you’re thinner, smarter, richer, get a new job, etc). You will not be better if you live believing something that has a potentiality to not come true because you are not acting upon it. Even if you do act upon it, a lot of the times, this magical thinking relates to not really being practical about what could lead you in the spot you believe it’s going to transform you into this queen of happiness. Again, you should refer to the above, but do not believe your thoughts, and don’t take them so seriously. All things come and go in life, and practising mindfulness and gratefulness is more achievable (see my Blogmas 3 – link here and 4 – link here ) and can break down these thinking patterns of magically becoming something you think you want, when deep down, there is something else you need to focus on. Remember Carl Jung: “People will do anything, no matter how absurd, to avoid facing their own souls.” What are you avoiding by making use of magical thinking?

9.Over-personalizing – You make things personal, when they aren’t. You believe other people’s opinions are facts. You think what other people do or say is in reaction to you. I used to be a daily user of this destructive habit. Working in a call centre, you get a lot of people annoyed at the service or product and they say things such as “You do not understand”, “You think you know it all”, “You must listen to me, I am the customer” and I would easily get demotivated, annoyed, angry and sometimes even believe of myself of being incompetent. But I guess, you need to go through it to get out of it. Just be aware of this cognitive distortion and distort it in your favour. Instead of thinking of yourself to do everything well because you cannot cope with another negative feedback, say something like “I would prefer to perform well, but it’s not a disaster if I don’t.”

10.Mind -reading – you make assumptions about what other people are thinking. And we all are culprits on this one. We make assumptions because we are judgemental. And this is hard to get rid of. To reach that though, you first need to acknowledge there is a problem. That way you are half way through. For this, you can train yourself when speaking to people by listening in a mindful way, being fully present, without trying to control the conversation or the person you are speaking to think your way or convince them of something and to be free of judging their perspective. Rather, try understanding their perspective and see through their glasses. What do they see? What would they want to hear from you? What would you like to hear if you were in their shoes?

11.Double standard – You hold yourself to a higher standard than anyone else. I am the personification of this cognitive distortion. I am a perfectionist and I am still figuring out how to restructure this distortion in my mind. A lot of the times, people experiencing double standard demand a lot of themselves, are severe to themselves if they do not stand up to their own elevated expectations of what they should have accomplished and they may surround themselves with people who aren’t that professional. Sometimes they do, but they immediately feel the person and when they see that everyone that they’ve met so far fails their standards, they might start to overgeneralize and more biases are born. Be careful what you tolerate, you are teaching people how to treat you. If you demand a lot of yourself, and show this to others, they might start asking more from you, because they believe of you being capable of delivering more than anticipated. This puts you in a position of stress and pressure to accommodate your standard to even higher ones, because for a person with a double standard, nothing is ever good enough.

12. Fallacy of fairness – you think things should work out according to what you think is fair. People do not have the same standard as you do. People have their own level of fairness and correctness and consciousness. I get a lot frustrated by the fact that people do not see things as I see them and this thinking pattern falls into this category because I expect them to think the same way regarding specific general topics, such as cleanliness, as an example. The truth is, people are unique and so is their viewing on the world, and so is their behaviour. What you think is trash might be someone else’s treasure and vice-versa. That’s how you need to think all aspects of life to heal this cognitive distortion. Also, do remember that “everything that irritates us about others, can lead us to an understanding of ourselves” as Carl Jung said.

13.Emotional Reasoning – you think your feelings are reality. In fact, they only portray your perception of the world. They are unique and they do not mean they are highlighting the reality around you. If you feel crap, it does not mean you are horrible. That’s just your interpretation of an emotion. Step out of that behavioural pattern and be kind to yourself. Appreciate what you have and who you are and who you are becoming. To reconstruct this cognitive distortion of emotional reasoning, you have to start thinking that your mental health is to be treated with the same importance as your physical health. When you think “I am worthless/ I feel worthless” do believe that YOUR EMOTIONS DO NOT DICTATE YOUR REALITY and say it to you out loud: “My emotions do not dictate my reality”.

Be patient with yourself as nothing in nature blooms all year round.

More words to heal you and start the transformation process until the end of the year: GATHER COURAGE LIKE WILDFLOWERS. (Jak Major)

Sometimes, when you’re in a dark place, you think you have been buried but actually you have been planted.

I would like to end today’s Blogmas with one word, this is EQUANIMITY.

Equanimity is a mental calmness, composure and evenness of temper, especially in a difficult situation. I believe that all these cognitive distortions are ways we use to cope with life and the experiences we face. We need mindfulness and lots of self-care to achieve this equanimity thinking pattern and I am confident with enough information and explanation and exposure to uplifting content, we can all be examples of challenging our existing beliefs and restructuring our most common cognitive distortions that stop us from truly come to terms with tranquillity and peace and our own unique story of life or career success.

Which cognitive distortion do you find yourself hard to overcome?

11 best and inspirational articles about learning languages I found online

“Language is not a genetic gift, it is a social gift. Learning a new language is becoming a member of the club – the community of speakers of that language”- Frank Smith. Now, I do not know who Frank Smith is, but when I found this quote online I truly integrated that. I recently joined a community of foreign language speakers on social media, mostly on Instagram and if before this decision, everything in my feed was more related to fashion, beauty and beautiful pictures, it’s now pretty much language and learning foreign languages content. It is more motivational than I really thought it would be and more fun than I expected it to be. Although I cannot possibly check all new posts, I feel really impressed and pleasantly surprised to report back that social media can make you feel inspired to do stuff than just make you drool on the pictures you see, leaving you feel like you are not accomplishing anything worthwhile in this life. Then I found this one: “The more languages you know, the more you are human” from another person I have no idea who he is, named Tomas Garrigue Masaryk. (note to self – to look those names up)

So these 2 quotes inspired me to search for more content on language learning to get insights, tips, tricks and share them here, but first, apply them myself. Here are some of the most inspirational and educational posts I found online on language learning to motivate you in your actions of foreign language learning.

1.I would like to begin with one short article that discusses some findings regarding how the brain learns a new word. And I quote:

Practising language is important. Every little helps. Just perception – listening – is helpful.

This suggests that even listening to a podcast such as CoffeeBreak on Spotify or similar ones, will help tremendously in you picking up the language faster. I can relate to this because while growing up I used to watch a lot of Spanish soap operas and when I started really learning Spanish in school, I was able not only to learn it faster but to also have this in the flow perception when learning anything new. It was not something I dreaded, even if it had to do with grammar because I simply loved the language. I was accustomed to it and it was easy to make my learning and language skills progress way faster.

the researcher … thought repetition is the key – but the brain learned best when it was relaxed and not trying to remember anything at all. {…} you remember because you go back to it again and again. {…} the brain has to determine what it is important and what’s not.

This really supports what I was mentioning above with the state of flow I was finding myself whenever I was having my Spanish classes, whenever I was learning on my own or watching something in Spanish. This means if you want to learn a language, you must do it because you really want to learn that target language, not because it is something someone is telling you to do, not because you imposed on yourself to learn a new language or a specific language. You must have a connection with the foreign language you choose to learn. That’s when passion blends with learning and if your attitude towards learning is relaxed, you are more likely to quickly become fluent.

Read more in this article.

2.This article was written by Amy Thompson who is an associate professor of Applied Linguistics at University of South Florida and she studies how learning languages can have cognitive and emotional benefits. 2 key concepts are discussed here: cultural competence and tolerance of ambiguity.

Cultural competence is opening people’s eyes to a way of doing things that;s different to their owns. Tolerance of ambiguity refers to the comfort level a person experiences when dealing with unfamiliar situations.

Analysing cultural stereotypes when learning a new language means also learning a new way of thinking and behaving, much like in this quote: “Learning a foreign language not only reveals how other societies think and feel, what they have experienced and value, and how they express themselves, it also provides a cultural mirror in which we can, more clearly, see our own society.” Chancellor Edward Lee Gorsuch. This chinese proverb says it all: “To learn a new language is to have one more window from which to look at the world.”

The second part of the post deals with the tolerance of ambiguity concept which the author pinpoints as follows:

Someone with a high tolerance of ambiguity finds unfamiliar situations rather exciting than frightening. {…} Conversations in a foreign language will inevitably involve unknown words. {…} Those with a high tolerance of ambiguity would feel comfortable maintaining the conversation despite the unfamiliar words involved.

To read the full article pop on here.

3.Can learning a new language boost your creativity? So, nowadays we see a lot of content, books and highlight put on creativity because as Einstein says it “creativity is intelligence having fun” and it’s more important to be creative than smart, or something along those lines. Learning something new requires our brains to adapt quickly and grab every method out there to get to the outcome desired. This goes the same way with language learning. It has been researched and the result is that learning a foreign language expands our divergent thinking. The author explains this:

At a very basic level, learning a foreign language requires us to construct and negotiate the unique architecture in which it consists. Each new language we learn presents us with new barriers when trying to convey meaning. {…} As your mind generates possibilities in order to negotiate these barriers, it engages in a potent form of divergent thinking – the very thinking that drives creativity.

Of course the method you use to learn the language can interfere in this enhancement of creative power and classic teaching focusing on memorising grammar structures and the focus on giving always the “correct answer” to problem solving is not going to achieve that outcome. The author is quoting Sir Ken Robinson as he is arguing the fact that the educational system has become so obsessed with avoiding mistakes that because of that “we are educating people out of their creative capabilities”.

More of your creativity related questions with regards to learning a foreign language are answered by the author in this blog post.

4.Things bilingual people do. This explores a different version of how bilinguals experience the world around them. It is as funny as it is based on science and research and it’s just something different to read to give you a little bit of inspiration. Marta Krzeminska, language passionate at LinguaLift blog writes about all things connected to language learning and learners. Have a go here.

5.From the same author I would like to also include a little info-graphic which should give you the push to include a little bit of language learning in your daily schedule. I was checking that out because I wanted to see how is the world, if you can say that, taking into account it’s just around 200 people the study was conducted on, incorporates foreign language study in their busy schedules. I am someone that prefers to embrace language learning throughout the day, for few minutes, for pleasure and not as a form of “I must learn this, it’s on my TO DO LIST.” That never worked for me. I have to find it fun and easy and relaxing. More insightful info to look at in the link Language Learning Habits.

6.Are language learning apps really that effective? I was actually asking this myself because the theory you have in mind is that you need a teacher, a classroom and a schedule and constant memorising. It’s not fun, maybe that’s why I postponed so much initiating a new foreign language learning. So, I have discovered a different approach mainly after watching this Youtube video, and then discovered some other polyglot Youtubers who kept mentioning about all these free apps which you can use to learn a language. My first thought was that it’s not sustainable. You need structure, grammar and a clear direction on what you are studying and how you are going to fulfil the learning material to make sure there is results soon and visible. An app would only and can only teach you so much as to words, vocabulary and help you memorise it better or faster. The article explores in my opinion the history of language learning, starting from audiolingualism, getting to the communicative approach and ending with the foreign language learning apps. The authors, all working at the University of Bath as course leaders are Mike Groves, Diana Hopkins and Tom Reid and I could not agree more with their findings related to the fact that the language learning apps can only work as an useful supplement when learning a new language but it is also a great tool to help literacy where that is not possible and give the option to everyone through free apps to learn a language and be able to articulate basics in a foreign language. In my own experience, learning a few minutes every day through the app is making me curious and excited for the next learning experience because I see progress straight away. And that’s because it’s few words. But if you consider the theory by which if you set yourself a goal and you dedicate 1 minute per day to that goal every day, simply because you learn fast and remember for the next day, makes you feel satisfied with yourself and keeps you going. It keeps you motivated and sooner than you realise you will extend the time from 1 minute to 5, and so on, until it truly becomes a habit and a passion, something that you enjoy doing rather than something you dread starting. So, in my opinion language learning apps are amazing, they are of course just a supplement as you could never really become advanced just by using an app, but most likely it helps shape the patterns to learning and it is motivating you towards bigger goals.

More reading on the subject of audiolingualism (the drill where students repeat sentences over and over until they memorise it and recognise it in practice), the communicative approach (which relates to: it’s better to speak broken grammar and good pronunciation than perfect grammar but wrong pronunciation, as in that situation you cannot make yourself understood) and the audio-lingual drilling can be found here. The apps I use for language learning are Drops and LingQ.

7.The mind of the language learner written by Steven Kaufmann (who created also the LingQ app for language learning), the linguist that can speak 17 languages explores in this article how the mind of the reader can be associated with the mind of the language learner by seeing yourself as someone that can learn, that enjoys learning and that is positive about the learning/reading.

8.Storytelling to learn languages. This is written by Luca Lampariello and he is a well known figure in the kingdom of polyglots and his insights and language learning observations are probably where most of the new arrived on the market polyglots get their information or learning tips they share online too. He is explaining this article that stories help us memorise vocabulary and so “It’s not a coincidence that one of the most popular techniques among memory experts is to build a story around what they want to remember.” as he writes. I mean, storytelling does everything that we need to acquire the language: stories are fun, full of vocabulary that has context for the new words, stories teach us how to speak the way the foreigner of that target language expresses himself or herself, configuring the grammar in a cultural immersion and linguistic environment. I also loved this article because Steve Kaufmann’s app LingQ is based on stories and reading and hearing the stories there helps a lot with pronunciation, spelling and both visualisation of the words in context.

I am leaving for the end the best of the articles I found online about language learning and one of them is about the importance of the digital language divide.

9.How does the language you speak shape your experience of the internet? written by Holly Young. This is probably one of the most interesting and inspirational piece of content relating to language learning and foreign languages online. I found reading it like a breath of fresh air in the large ocean of alike foreign language posts and articles found on the internet. It makes you think, it makes you wonder and it makes you want to do something about it. If you are like me, and you do speak a language that is only based in that specific country, you do want to preserve it, you do feel it is important that we keep the culture and not globalise everything because the official language online is English (thus highlighting more English learning than our own culture and native languages, simply because that’s the universal language now). The article explores how countries in which English or any other foreign language learning is a priority puts that city/town/maybe even country to being excluded from information as all information online is in English. Lacking English language skills makes one vulnerable to outdated information and inability to find new information in one’s native language due to lack of translation because everyone assumes that everyone knows or should know English. Here’s my highlights:

Inequalities in the information available for different languages online has implications for who and what gets represented – and by whom. {research based on word searches related to the language spoken pinpoints that 11% of people are multilingual on Twitter and 15% on wikipedia} Multilinguals have the power to be influential whether it is translating and bringing foreign concepts into different language editions on Wikipedia, or moving breaking local news stories to new language communities and different geographies.

Twitter has a particularly high number of Malay, Portuguese and Spanish users also tweeting in English.

The research of Andras Kornai at the paper Digital Language Death claims to present evidence of a massive die – off caused by the digital divide. Will the internet act as a catalyst for the extinction of many of the world’s languages?

Access to internet also offers the opportunity for linguistic empowerment : to document and preserve languages, to share teaching online to encourage new speakers, to translate important information for marginalised groups and to even create virtual communities of speakers where they may struggle to exist offline.

{the Endangered languages project} Is there a danger however that instead, new users, influenced by the volume of content in more dominant languages, will abandon their mother tongues online?

research suggests that speakers of smaller languages online will often opt to use the internet in a larger language, even if they don’t speak it well.

10.The only post you’ll ever need to learn a language in record time by Tim Ferris. I am not even going to dive into this one. This is what you will learn from reading it:

How to speak your target language today.
How to reach fluency and exceed it within a few months.
How to pass yourself off as a native speaker. And finally, how to tackle multiple languages to become a “polyglot”—all within a few years, perhaps as little as 1-2.

11.And finally, the last inspirational resource I discovered online about foreign language learning is contained in a series of articles written by Kevin Morehouse, named Language News from Around the World. As the title suggests, it’s like a newsletter with everything fresh. The blog has not been updated in a while but still, scrolling through older versions, I could still find great language learning content and more news around foreign languages.

To end, I will include some inspirational quotes that I really find motivating to help you initiate this foreign language learning habit. I trust it will be of use to you!

“Language reflects the soul of the people.” Paul Schibler
“The spirit of a language is most clearly expressed in its untranslatable words.” Baroness Marie ‘Freifrau’ von Ebner-Eschenbach
“With each language, you learn to free yourself from your trapped spirit.” Friedrich Ruckert

“With foreign words on our tongue comes also the foreign spirit into our world.” Carl Theodor Korner

The characteristics of the work you obtain and the way you describe it reflects your inner self

Journaling about how I feel I am, about what I like about my job and about what I wish in the working that I do, has made me realize very important aspects about myself and mirroring the information with my husband, have discovered that this, what I am about to blog about, really makes sense. Indeed, I got this insight that the way I describe the work that I do, with its goods and bad, describes me spooky well. I have also come to the realization and have come to terms to what is actually its significance when we say or we are told by leaders and inspirational speakers etc that we should forget what society is telling us, we should ignore what people tell us we cannot do and we can do. I know truly, deeply have figured it out.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo By – Natalia Figueredo

This is how it works:

I have come to the conclusion that many times, I want to be or become someone or do something due to expectations I believe of myself to have and to be my own, when the fact is they were imprinted by something I would have seen online, or offline in real life to people that are so happy with their lives, careers and so on and who make feel everyone listening to them that they have discovered, understood and aligned to their path. This alignment and flow in these people’s life is something so powerful that it is impossible for everyone else not experiencing it to not be inspired, maybe jealous, curious and secretly wishing to have their life, while taking as much in as possible from their speech, attitudes, behaviors, clothing, ideas and even desires to do or become someone meaningful or worthy or admired or to become that “word” which is on everyone’s lips nowadays – successful.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self
Photo by Jon Tyson

I believe that what we really are attracted to these successful people is their total happiness and perfection in life (wealth, health and family) which is intrinsic to EVERYONE and that we all wrongly believe that the energy and bliss they are experiencing is something we could experience too if we follow our desires. But our desires are not really our desires. They are made up from the energy, passion, vibration and inspiration we feel energized by when we listen to these people. Instead of taking in the courage to listen to our inner beings and confront what actually makes us happy (which most of the times is in contradiction to what we think we want because it was imprinted by society) we believe that we are going to feel that freedom, independence and happiness, free of any burden of unwanted responsibilities if we follow their path. Their path is presented to us with such an energy that is contagious and it’s getting confused to our own path. We want the same life too. We admire successful people, we may chase them on Instagram, we may acutely read them or watch them or listen to what they have to say and we breathe their story instead of taking in their energy and passion for their path and not the path itself. This happens because society is made in such a way that our minds are confused to what actually is success.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

While growing up we are tamed into perfect believers that if we work hard enough and if we follow the rules of other successful people we will be happy. Parents tell children, “how are you going to pay bills with this? (whether is painting, games, literature, fashion, anything that contradicts your parent’s vision of success which they encountered in their imprinted life)” or “if you do not learn this now, you won’t be able to get a job and what are you going to do then?” (instead of focusing on what they do best now and enhance their strengths) or “this is nice and you are good at it, but you need to do this still, it’s more practical” (implying that if we do not do certain jobs, we are not going to live, which our brains cannot conceive because we are hardwired for survival, so any notes on that, and we forget our passions, we go cozy and comfortable, we go safe.) So safe, that when we hear successful people talk about their struggles, our brains instead of understanding that it is about following our unique passions, about going wild and not domesticated, we go into a society friendly mode by which we comply even more with life and what other people say – work hard, study this and that, make your way into the business; started from the bottom, now we’re here vibe isn’t about following someone else’s dreams or ways of getting into this “success”ful trend, is about finding your / our own distinct talents and using them. It’s about following our intuition with what we like and want to study or work in, it’s about working harder on persevering with our dreams as this is SO MUCH HARDER than working harder on a safe job. It’s so HARD to maintain yourself accountable for your dreams and passions and talents and how you grow into an expert in that. It is extremely difficult to follow the path of rejection from everyone telling you “you are wrong”, “you will lose all your money”, “I do not believe in this working for you”, “you should just keep this as a hobby rather” and everyone turning your back at you because they are afraid YOU are confronting their lack of courage to go for their path and destiny. It’s easy to close your eyes and pretend that it does not exist. As a comparison, it’s easier to think food is just food to eat and fill my body than truly going deep and understanding food is medicine and that all disease comes from poor eating habits and lack of interest in learning that, because this too, has to do with the same thing – lack of courage. We are cowards because we know it’s actually hard to fight against our selves and our imprinted expectations, wishes and hopes and ideas of success.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

Success is unique to everyone. And it is a perception. Perceptions are not the same as reality. Perception is subjective and it has to do a lot with your environment and your imprints and your unique being. Perception is not reality. Therefore, the way we perceive success does not mean the emotions we would feel if we would attain that success we see in others, would be real. As one of my Uni teachers said, “Behind every emotion, there is another emotion.” Perception is illusion. Success is an illusion of something we make up in our own heads highly influenced by peers, society, energies we perceive and wrongly translate into happiness. Energies we feel are the vibration of the “successful” person that is doing what he/she likes, has positive and beautiful results and shares it with the world. This sharing makes him/her happy. This happiness translates into that energy we perceive. We perceive their vibration which was able to be materialized into a concrete form and they have made something tangible. That thing which is tangible that we define as success is the inner self fulfilling its destiny he/she set up way before they were born. They had the courage to follow their intuition despite everyone else being against them not obeying the rules.

We are all intuitive. We all feel things. Even though they are perceptions, and they are subjective, they belong to us and there’s a reason we feel it. To follow it. 

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

This is another insight I gained while journaling – I do enjoy working, but I need to put in the work that I want to do and feel in the flow with. If I am forced (and we all force ourselves to go against what we feel inside we should be doing, by following what other people are telling us we should do to be happy, since everyone else is happy doing the same thing) to work something I do not want to work (even though I may be successful in that and maybe quite reach a good status) then I develop certain negative emotions and feelings inside such as anxiety, stress and lack of contentment for my life, I do not feel fulfilled rather depleted of energy and consumed by responsibilities I dread and wish would not have to be accountable for. These emotions generated by the job I work are what I actually despise when I say “I do not like my job”. It’s not the job itself. It’s how it makes me feel. The way my job makes me feel means that I need to gather even more energy to cope with processing it. Which is not something I want to do. I want to keep my energy for myself, for what I truly want to work. For what really makes me happy. I want to keep that energy for activities that will generate emotions which I do like and enjoy feeling – such as tranquility, gratefulness, bliss, peace, inspiration, self esteem and other inner unique emotions which make me happy. If I feel more the negative emotions generated by how I perceive my job, it does not mean I cannot feel the positives one generated when I am out from the office and doing what I enjoy, it simply means I have to spend more time in the negative and less in the positive and it requires more energy taken from the positive to actually process the negative and be able to get back in balance for the next day. If you have ever felt drained at the end of a working day, you know what I mean. That feeling means you need to sleep to regain your energy and positive attitude to problem solving at work. It’s not that I dislike problem solving. I dislike the activity I have to do to use problem solving. I want to use that in an activity that I enjoy being challenged. If that makes sense.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Emma Matthews

So, next, based on the above, I want to tackle the following:

The reason we look for something else when we obtain a job that we do not resonate with and we say “Oh, I would wish to have a job in which … this and that” or “How awesome would it be, if …” is because we are our jobs and we do not really like ourselves, we do not really accept our weaknesses or vulnerabilities and there’s plenty of stuff we need to change and we don’t. Our jobs are an environment that generates bad energy and negative vibes and that’s because deep down that’s how we really are. The way you describe your job is how you react. As an example, I describe my job as stressful, annoying, boring, full of hassle, too much responsibility, too serious, very secretive in a way and procedural, process driven, analytical, high service levels and too many demands. Well, guess what, I am very serious (I take my responsibilities very seriously), I am analytical, very attentive to details and that makes me easily drained, I have lots of responsibilities that I wish could be shared in terms of finance management, I can be very annoying as I want things to be made my way because I am extremely cautious and precaution and safety are my top strength qualities and traits, I am not very adventurous and prefer the safe road, step by step approach which is something demanded at my job and I can be very anxious and stressed if I do not get things done quickly enough and with quality (because I am very serious and conscientious) and that’s how I realized why I am my job. And why would I or we even go for a job that is something about ourselves that we do not like and wish to overcome?

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo By Emma Matthews

Because everything in the universe is ENERGY. We attract what we are. We are our jobs. We are our environments. Because we attract them through how we breathe, think, speak and act. We have attracted the jobs we have which we would like to change. Because we are attracting what we are, what we truly want is the opposite. And we desire and look up for the opposite because we search for balance and harmony. Harmony and balance can be achieve if there is a minus and a plus. That’s when we are whole. We have everything we need to survive, to grow further and enrich other people’s lives like “successful” people do. When we want to have a different thing than what we have, it’s because we are searching to fulfill ourselves. We cannot be whole by only being one thing we are. We need it all. That’s why we are searching for our purposes, we follow goals and passions and hobbies to release energy that balances and harmonizes ourselves. We need our jobs as we have it. But we also need to follow our intuitions. Because our intuition has the purpose to take us on the path that will actually create this harmony and will actually take us where we are supposed to be, to become “successful.” 

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

I also believe that our intuition is like the fragments of bread that Hansel and Gretel left behind themselves to find their way back home while wandering in the woods. We have chosen this job we have now, way before we were born, we are predestined and we have chosen to leave our intuition to guide us in life to make sure we fulfill our destinies (and become humanly “successful” through our passions and energies and teachings we get from that to pass on) and then come back home – to God.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

I have lots of Youtubers and bloggers that I aspire to, that inspire me and that I love their flow and think to myself, “how can I have that life too, that easy, peaceful and wealthy life”? I see and perceive and feel their energies – they have already tuned into their intuitions and follow their path and are on their way to their destinies. I think when we admire someone and are inspired by their achievements in life we actually admire their found energy in fulfilling their destiny and listening to their intuition, and being who they ARE already, not who they WILL BECOME. We feel (because our intuitions really are special) that they follow their path and will go back to God happy to have finished their own assigned missions. We feel their accountability towards their destiny. We want to do that too, but we believe we need to do what they are doing to reach the same level of happiness, contentment and fulfillment, just because that’s what we see at the surface and what we perceive. And that’s when intuition plays in and when we need to follow. But we don’t, we trust more the other people and what society says we should do to have achievements. And that’s why I believe I now understand when we read about “why we should set aside what society tells us to do, and not do it”.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Clark Tibbs

I have listened to myself. I have listened and discovered that what I admire at successful people is an internalized expectation of myself set by the society to achieve something worthwhile to become admired and lovable and a model for other peers. I do not need to have a specific position to be happy and I do not need to have specific knowledge in specific fields of operation to be accepted by society, to be admired by others and to be employed or get a job. I do not need to dress in a certain way to feel beautiful or to be seen as beautiful. I do not need to do SO MUCH to be allowed x, y and z things/stuff/activities/treats etc.

You do not need to do so much and hassle so much to be allowed to just be happy as you are, with what you know and with what you do, you do not need to do so much to be allowed to have x, y and z in life. Follow your intuition because it will take you where you need to be and it will make you become who you are supposed to become, the person you predestined yourself to become and forget about what society tells you.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Emma Matthews

I also discovered that who I am is not the same to whom I want to become or whom I would like to be like because what I would like to become might very well be given by my false illusion about my expectation that I need to be and become in a certain way since that’s how I have seen someone I admired that is happy and I made a wrong assumption (again, subjective perception) that that person’s life flow is in total alignment with their environment so then I need that environment too, to fulfill myself too and so, I believe I need to become someone alike that successful person by putting effort into creating an environment like them, maybe creating a blog, a youtube channel, a podcast etc. But that does not mean it will make me fulfill my destiny or it’ll fill me inside with contentment and happiness and harmony.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Jon Tyson

My core value and strength is based on safety and extreme precaution and caution. In everything that I am and I do, I am cautious and rarely take risks (unless I can go ahead with the consequences of losing something because I am not really losing). This type of cautiousness and safety that I create around me and that I breathe and I am is comforting to me because I know I can rely on myself since I am very serious, responsible and accountable and this is achieving me independence because I am practical, down to earth and determined in employing a step by step approach to problem solving and being so reliable has its benefits in society because society functions on these core values of doing things as you are told, obeying, not taking adventurous steps or not following the guidelines. It’s how I gained my independence. My money. Therefore my way of being safe in the world actually gives me independence and that is creating my freedom. That’s why I enjoy things to go in a certain way and I like to be cautious, I pay attention to details, I make sure things I organized and systemic and everything is in order. Because otherwise, it would threaten my status quo of freedom. And freedom brings me tranquility and peace and harmony. It’s very twisted and complex, but that’s the human mind and it may be hard to swallow this information. But this is what I believe.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Fineas Anton

My inner hidden anxiety is how I am for real but cannot accept that as it makes me react quickly and jump to conclusions and then regret my actions because that’s the main thing anxiety does – makes you want to react quickly to STOP the anxiety. And how would I do that if not by reacting too quickly to RELEASE THAT NEGATIVE ENERGY and EMOTION. But doing so there are consequences. That quick reaction is risky. I do not like risky. So it’s like a vicious circle. The only way to break it is to maintain my precautions. And how do I do that? Follow what society says it’s good for you. So my inner self attracts my future job/work environment. Because we are the way we describe our jobs. To balance that inside, we hide our true self with masks. My mask is a face of calm and peace and rationale and long time processing thinking patterns in the midst of a devastating emotional inner hidden (sometimes even from myself) turmoil. And that mask keeps me on balance. So, I search and aspire to a job that is alike my mask. I need a job of which activities and tasks I can speak are not stressing me and that inspire tranquility and great harmony. I dream of working in a harmonious positive (or how I perceive it) work environment to balance out that true hidden self of anxiety, stress and high demands. I look for peaceful working environments as self defense mechanism. But I always end up in jobs similar to my inner being, because I have not come to fully accept myself yet (having just discovered it, I first need to internalize that and understand it) and I attract what I am. Living with our selves for such long time, we have also started to love ourselves and all our craziness and it is difficult to free oneself of that which we know characterizes us. In a way, I do enjoy challenging working environments, competitive tasks and activities and high demands because I like to prove myself I can do that and also that, and that too and so on. This attitude is linked to what we were told while growing up “if you do this and that, you get this and that”. This means that we have been imprinted with this idea that we need to do more and more and we need to achieve more and more to obtain more and more and TO DESERVE ALL THAT WE WANT. But no one has ever told us when it was enough. Because it is enough. You are enough. 

I believe this is why it’s important to listen to our intuition. Our intuition is the only one telling us “that’s enough!”, “you are enough”. Enough of that.

I am not who I want to be like or who I want to become.

I am not who I think of myself to be. I am not who I think I am.

I am who I will be if I trust my intuition now and follow what it’s whispering to me. My intuition will take me where I need to be and it will guide me to whom I will become.

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo By Chris Liu

Sometimes, my intuition yells at me, and I silence it. Or some days, I do listen but then I remind myself who I think I want to become not knowing I AM already and I simply need to follow the predestined steps I set for myself, before I was even born. I know who I am. Do not doubt your intuition. I have left my intuition as a gift to me in this life to use. I call myself to use it to reach my destination and my destiny. To reach myself.

You are not who you want to be like or who you want to become. You are not who you think of yourself to be. You are not who you think you are. 

You are who you will be if you trust your intuition now and you follow what’s whispering to you. Your intuition will take you where you need to be and it will guide you to become who you are to become. 

The way you describe your work reflects your inner self - how your job is related to your hidden self
Photo by Emma Matthews

As a conclusion, your perception of your job reflects your inner self and you struggle to fight that by putting on a mask in opposition to how that perception makes you experience life or makes you feel emotions or feelings you do not wish to. Your mask is made up of emotions that generate positive vibes, feelings and mostly ENERGY that balances out your POWERFUL INNER TRUE SELF. We are searching for harmony to balance the inner self and the desired self. Harmony can be achieved by following our intuitions. Step by step.

Reflect on the way you describe your job. How are you, really? 

freestocks your job reflects your inner self

 

 

 

 

 

How to reprogram your unconscious mind to positively impact your everyday life

By bringing more awareness into our everyday life through conscious concentration we can reprogram our mind, our subconscious and this will help us change our patterns and ultimately our lives. What is conscious concentration? It is the state of mind in which you realise that you are aware of the specific tasks and activities you are doing at the time. It is something like the Power of Now of Echkart Tolle. To work on constructing this conscious now moment in which we are aware of it and of everything that is surrounding us, we have to understand that we have to manifest more observation, paying attention to details, being attentive to what we see, hear, touch, say and do. By paying close attention to each task without dividing our focus into multiple activities occurring simultaneously, we will improve our concentration as we are teaching it where and how much to focus, which means all our concentration goes to a single uni-dimensional task.

how to reprogram your subconscious mind to positively impact you
Photo by Hannah McKernan

When we are trying this power of now exercise, we must include in our daily routines the affirmations meditation. It’s like a mantra. A daily mantra of sayings we tell our mind. This helps our concentration too, as our mind receives specific thought nutrients that it needs to focus on that. In order for us to reprogram our subconscious mind to positively impact our every day life, we need to understand there are 3 ingredients to making up an affirmation or a mantra.

An affirmation has to have the following 3 ingredients: conscious choice of positive words, clear visualisation and corresponding feeling – emotion which is manifested through an energy.

As Tesla said “To find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration”.

Everything is made up of energy that’s vibrating at a specific frequency. If your subconscious is filled with patterns that are vibrating at a certain frequency and if you could go into your subconscious and create a pattern, infuse it with energy that’s vibrating at a certain frequency, you can attract things of a similar nature to it. That’s how your day to day life gets changed.

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Photo by Hannah Mckernan

So if I go into my subconscious, I repeat an affirmation which has a conscious choice of positive words, clear visualisation, I infuse a feeling into it (what does it feel like) and it starts to vibrate in my subconscious at that frequency, now it attracts anything of a similar vibration or a similar frequency towards it.

Energy doesn’t know to discriminate between what’s good and what’s not good for you. It’s just energy. So anything of a similar frequency gets drawn to you. If you know how your subconscious works and you know how to program it using affirmations with conscious choice of positive words, clear visualisation and a corresponding feeling (feeling being the most important component because it is the actual energy that attracts) then you can bring into your life everything you want.

What does conscious choice of positive words mean? 

It should consists of something that I could compare to the SMART objectives. Specific, measurable, actionable with results in time. Let’s take some examples: I am powerfully creative and I successfully express my creativity through meaningful writing that my audience is telling they enjoy. or I feel blessed with everything that the universe is providing to me and I receive all good from all life opportunities. or Something beautiful is on my way and I know I am attracting good fortune, abundance and blessings for me and my family now. or if you remember my last post? Christie Marie Sheldon had a lovely affirmation when gathering the Light into ourselves and healing our emotional wounds through the saying I clear and transmute my feeling of not good enough/ my feeling of something across all time, dimensions, space and realities. A conscious choice of positive words.

how to reprogram your subconscious mind to positively impact you
Photo by Hannah Mckernan

What does clear visualisation refer to? 

To explain this, I will use the following affirmation: I love apples. When you use “I”, the mind clearly understands it is you who it is referring to, when you use the word “love” again it is a clear word which means nothing but love. But when you use the word “apples” the mind gets confused as it has a lot of things relating to apple: golden apples, gala apples, red apples, etc, itunes, Apple the brand, macbook pro etc. Therefore, clear visualisation is connected to us seeing the image of what we say. Therefore what type of apples do we love? If it’s green, then when you say I love apples, you see a green apple, you imagine it, and your mind instantly gets the point. It will know what you need from it and it will follow your instructions on loving green apples and not red apples, as the command was with “green” through the visualisation process. In our examples, we could imagine something creative expresses physically, such as a piece of art, a viral blog post, a variety of valuable comments appreciating your creative expression and your success which follows that visualised in the form of an award/ a pay rise/ a brand deal/ etc. In the example offered through Christie Marie Sheldon with the Light mantra meditation exercise to heal our chakras (if you had read my blog post) we simply imagine the Light coming into that specific part of the body where we feel those negative emotions and we imagine how it disperse and evaporates all that bad stuff.

What does corresponding feeling – emotion – energy mean? 

This has to do with what does it feel like when you obtain that which you have stated. what does it feel to love green apples? What does it feel to be successful creatively? What does it feel to imagine the Light clearing your blockages? What does it feel to obtain that which you have put into your affirmation? It is a powerful energy that makes you feel blessed. You surely know how you feel or how it would make you feel achieving that affirmation. Energy doesn’t know to discriminate between what’s good and what’s not good for you. It’s just energy. So anything of a similar frequency gets drawn to you. That’s why it is important to infuse our affirmations with the correct positive ENERGY to attract the same level of positive energy.

So if we go into our subconscious, we repeat an affirmation which has a conscious choice of positive words, clear visualisation, we infuse a feeling into it (what does it feel like) and it starts to vibrate in our subconscious at that frequency, now it attracts anything of a similar vibration or a similar frequency towards it. And that’s how you reprogram your subconscious mind to positively impact your daily activities and obviously, in the end, your life and lifestyle.

how to reprogram your subconscious mind to positively impact you
Photo by Marcus Cramer

Photos in which I appear were taken by – Hannah Mckernan – Part of a creative photoshoot – team involved on instagram -Amazing Photography: @hannahmckernanphotography Models – me (through @cathy_cmpr) & @_joelander (freelance) Beautiful Location: @lissanhousecookstown Stunning Dresses: @creativeideasbridal Luxury Headpieces: @gibsonbespoke Simply beautiful Florals: @innocent_chaos Amazing Hair: @ohsobohohair Stunning Natural Make up: @sakdesigns Great Backdrops & styling: @thisoldhome Stationery: @ciarapatrickdesigns Suits: @deegrahamtailormade Cake: @baked_blessings

Step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition

I came across Christie Marie Sheldon through MindValley, which is a company that I discovered a couple of years ago that focuses on personal growth and offers courses, masterclasses and books from the best authors in personal development in the world. Christie Marie Sheldon is an intuitive healer and energetic coach which is not something that you would come across on a daily basis and it is one of those persons that can read your aura. If you have ever read about chakras and your chi energy or your aura then, that’s what she does. She can see it. She knows everything about you in an instant. I have experienced this with one of our Romanians energetic coaches and finding more information and insights from around the world, makes the initial learning far more precious and demonstrates once again, that we are more than this physical body. We are energy.

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition

So, intuition is something we all have but we do not use it or we do not really rely on it as much as we should. If you have ever had the feeling that you should be doing something or not be doing something, and you did not follow that internal guide, and later on, you realised that your initial thoughts were correct and you should have or should have not followed a specific pattern, then, hello You, that was your intuition and that’s how you know that it is something you do have and it does work. It’s not esoteric. It’s a fact.

Christie Marie Sheldon is a gifted intuitive life coach and author. She is Mindvalley’s #1 bestselling and most viral author, celebrated for her uncanny ability to access people’s energy fields, erase their inner blocks, and raise their vibrations towards their fullest potential.

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition

I had encountered a specific tool to help us use our intuition to solve a problem we feel we have. This is something she created and her guide is very simple. First and foremost, you have to understand the

ABC – Always be connected to the Light.

The light is everything you believe in, whether is a guru, the universe, God, the divine, etc. It is the LIGHT. By being connected to the light, we understand that we are part of the Light, that Light is guiding us and that we are in connection with it. We feel and we believe it is true. (and this would most likely be the case, no matter what you believe in – the universe, the law of attraction, meditation etc)

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition
Photo Credit – Cristian Newman

Next step is to pose yourself a question and rate it how does it feel on a scale of 1 to 10. Let’s say our issue now is that we do not trust ourselves and we lack the confidence to do something. There is going to be a series of questions that you ask yourself and answer. 

What’s the first age I felt this?

(Keep asking the question until you get the answer, it would be the first thing that comes to mind when you pop the question – do not try to think too much about it, just ask the question, – if you are in the proper state of mind for this meditation/exercise, you will receive the answer, you will know it straight away) In this example, I have felt that I did not trust myself and lacked confidence in my body/beauty at the age of 7 years because …. 

Who did I duplicate this from? Was it my mom, my dad, someone else? Who have I learned this behaviour/response to a problem from? 

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition

(this question relates a lot to what you answer to the previous question, you will observe that you go deeper and deeper into the core of the issue by posing these questions. It is trying to bring to the surface the reasoning behind your problem) – In my example, I duplicated it from others who have told me that I am not like the others of my age at the time. The fact that my mom did not back me up, supported this belief. 

What’s the emotion attached to it? 

(what do you feel when you think about that situation?) In our example here, embarrassment, shame, inadequacy, something wrong with me, etc. 

Where in my body do I feel this emotion? Where is it located in my body? 

(we ask this question, because as Christie Marie Sheldon explained in her masterclass, we accumulate emotions in our bodies. Our chakras are connected to everything in our physical body. Our chakras are our emotional body. Our energy is our aura and our aura gets disrupted with what happens in our chakras. For everything that we experience physically, there is an emotional memory recorded in our body and thus into our chakras. When our chakras are depleted from energy because the emotions have piled up, we experience blockages. You will ask this question and you will instantly feel it in your body. It’s like an energy, a heat,a tension, something that feels in a specific part of your body.) In our example, I feel it in my stomach. 

After you have located it, imagine the Light coming into that part of the body and say the following positive affirmation, (it’s like a mantra):

I clear and transmute it across all time, dimensions, space and realities. 

I clear and transmute it across all time, dimensions, space and realities. 

I clear and transmute it across all time, dimensions, space and realities. 

How to pose for your wedding bridal shooting how to be a bride wedding modelling 6
Photo Credit – Hannah Mckernan

Repeat this several times while at the same time imagining the Light coming into that part of the body. The light is our infinite Self which is Love, compassion, healing, God, the universe. The reason we start our affirmation with I clear and transmute it, is because through these words we delete stored emotions, just as you delete cookies in your internet browser. It would make the browser run smoother. We bring the light to evaporate these stored negative emotions that are blocking us from becoming the best versions of ourselves. We all know how to be the best versions of ourselves.

Following this step: ask the following question:

What would it take for me to feel utterly completely self confident?

(based on our example)

I would need to obtain some form of success that I am fine and have had success even though I am different. If we go deeper, while we are saying what we need so we can feel enough/supported etc (based on each individual problem), you might realise that the answer is already popping out. As in this example, I felt that I should not feel embarrassed and that I should not be ashamed that I am skinny. Or that I do receive feedback on daily basis that I am beautiful. I have positive feedback from colleagues and managers at work that I am doing a great job even though I do not look as society tells us I should like as a woman. Just because I do not have the same appearance does not mean that I am less or more than other people’s capabilities. In our example, we continue after digesting these insights that pop into our minds, with another question.

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition
Photo Credit – Madhusmita D

On a scale of 1-10 how do you rate now the initial problem with self confidence?

It is a lot of the times, less than what you rated at the beginning of the exercise. If it only dropped let’s say from 9 to 6, you can continue again with the exercise until you feel it is 0. You can do this on a daily basis. This allows our chakras to strengthen as we are clearing the stored useless emotions that block us and prevent us from being the best we can be. It is self work and sometimes we are lazy to work with ourselves, but this is a tool that can help solve a problem. And you get to focus your attention on your intuition a lot, which improves your overall well being, as you train it and it will be manifested more easily after that in your activities.

Due to society’s programming, most people are not tuned into their spiritual self, and so they’re not aware of their true purpose. Many people end up living a life incongruent to their true selves. When a person lives a life unaware of their true spiritual nature, their consciousness is stuck in low vibrational frequencies. And this not only blocks progress, but it creates unnecessary stress and unhappiness.

step by step guide to solve a problem using your intuition

This simple tool is a first small step in a series of facilitating exercises that Christie Marie Sheldon implemented in her programs and I believe it is so easy that we can incorporate it in our day to day life and start seeing results fast and solve our problems using our intuition which is our internal best reassurance guide to take the best decisions.

Have you tried this exercise?

 

What problem did you solve? 

How to Dare

The followings are excerpts from the book “Creative Confidence – unleashing the creative potential within us all” and are taken from the chapter named DARE – from fear to courage, which in my opinion, pinpoints not just the creative process, but the decision making in life overall. I found it very useful, meaningful so, hopefully, if you had not had the chance to read the book, these glimpses into its fragments will convince you to pick it up from a book shop.

“Alberta Bandura has had a profound impact on the world of social learning and has been called the greatest living psychologist. He invented the methodology of what he calls guided mastery. The process of guided mastery draws on the power of first hand experience to remove false beliefs. It incorporates psychology tools like vicarious learning, social persuasion and graduated tasks. Along the way, it helps people confront a major fear and dispel it one small, manageable step at a time.”

learn how to dare creative confidence

The dramatic experience of overcoming a phobia that had plagued them for decades – a phobia they had expected to live with for the rest of their lives – had altered their belief system about their own ability to change. It had altered their belief in what they could accomplish. Ultimately, it transformed their lives.”

“When people have this belief, they undertake tougher challenges, persevere longer, and are more resilient in the face of obstacles and failure. Bandura calls this belief self-efficacy. Doubts in one’s creative ability can be cured by guiding people through a series of small successes. The state of mind Bandura calls self-efficacy is closely related to what we think of as creative confidence. People who have creative confidence make better choices, set off more easily in new directions and are better able to find solutions to seemingly intractable problems. They see new possibilities and collaborate with others to improve the situations around them. And they approach challenges with newfound courage.”

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

“In our experience {the authors}, one of the scariest snakes in the room is the fear of failure, which manifests itself in such ways as fear of being judged, fear of getting started, fear of the unknown. And while much has been said about the fear of failure, it still is the single biggest obstacle people face to creative success.”

“Creative geniuses are quite prolific when it comes to failure – they just don’t let that stop them. Research has found that creative people simply do more experiments. If you want more success, you have to be prepared to shrug off more failure. The real measure of success is the number of experiments that can be crowded into 24 hours. The faster you find weaknesses during an innovation cycle, the faster you can improve what needs fixing.

“Albert Bandura used the process of guided mastery – a series of small successes – to help people gain courage and overcome deep seated phobias. What would have been nearly impossible to accomplish in one giant leap became manageable in small steps, with the guidance of someone knowledgeable in the field. In a similar way, we use a step by step progression to help people discover and experience the tools and methodologies of design thinking, gradually increasing the level of challenge to help individuals transcend the fear of failure that blocks their best ideas. These small successes are intrinsically rewarding and help people to go on to the next level. Building confidence through experience encourages more creative action in the future, which further bolsters confidence. The lessons learned from failures may make us smarter – even stronger. But that doesn’t make failure any more fun. So most of us naturally try to avoid failure at all costs. Failure is hard, even painful. Fear of failure holds us back from learning all sorts of new skills, from taking on risks, and from tackling new challenges. But you come to accept that it’s part of learning, and in doing so, you are able to remain confident that you are moving forward despite the setbacks.”

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

About “urgent optimism – the desire to act immediately to tackle an obstacle motivated by the belief that you have a reasonable hope of success. Gamers always believe that an epic win is possiblethat it is worth trying, and trying new, over and over again. In the euphoria of an epic win, gamers are shocked to discover the extent of their capabilities. As you move from level to level, success can flip your mindset to a state of creative confidence.We just need to hold out a reasonable hope of success as well as the possibility of a truly epic win. Like a muscle, your creative abilities will grow and strengthen with practice.”

“Diego Rodriguez in his blog Metacool says that innovation thinkers often use informed intuition to identify a great insight, a key need, or a core feature. In other words, relentless practice creates a database of experience that you can draw upon to make more enlightened choices. When it comes to bringing new stuff into the world, Diego argues that the number of product cycles you’ve gone through (what he calls mileage) trumps the number of years of experience. Once you have gone through enough rapid innovation cycles, you will gain familiarity with process and confidence in your ability to assess new ideas. And the confidence results in reduced anxiety in the face of ambiguity when you are bringing new ideas into the world.”

“Whether you consider yourself a born innovator or are new to creative confidence, you can get better faster at coming up with new ideas if you give yourself and those around you the leeway to make mistakes from time to time. – constructive failure. We all need the latitude to try out new ideas. Look for ways to grant yourself creative license, or give yourself the equivalent of a get-out-of-a-jail-free card. Label your next new idea an experiment and let everyone know that you are just testing it out. Lower others’s expectations, so that failure can lead to learning without career damage. Author and educator Tina Seelig asks her students to write a failure resume that highlights their biggest defeats and screw-ups. In the process of compiling their failure resume, however, they come to own their setbacks, both emotionally and intellectually.”

“When a child loses confidence in his or her creativity, the impact can be profound. People start to separate the world into those who are creative and those who are not. They come to see these categories as fixed, forgetting that they too once loved to draw and tell imaginative stories. Too often they opt out of being creative. The tendency to label ourselves as non creatives comes from more than just our fear of being judged. When our self-worth isn’t on the line, we are far more willing to be courageous and risk sharing our raw talents and gifts.”

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

“When people are insecure, they’re not at their best. As people become more confident, they eventually adopt a bring-your-whole-self-to-work attitude and allow themselves to be vulnerable in a creative context. This vulnerability and ability to trust the people around you can help to overcome so many of the barriers to creative thinking and constructive behaviour.”

Resilient people, in addition to being resourceful problem solvers, are more likely to seek help, have strong social support and be better connected with colleagues, family and friends. Resilience if often thought of a solo effort – the lone hero who falls and rises up again to do battle. In reality, however, reaching out to others is usually a strategy for success. It doesn’t have to be an admission of weakness. We need others to help us bounce back from adversity and hardship. Dan Roam in his book How to Draw Anything insists that everything you ever need to draw on a whiteboard – or a napkin – can be deconstructed into 5 basic shapes: a line, a square, a circle, a triangle, and an irregular shape he calls a blob. Next, he explains drawing fundamentals – such as size, position, and direction – that can comically simple yet still go underused. On the topic of size, for example, if you make one object bigger than another, your audience will understand that this object is either closer or larger. And so it goes.”

learn how to dare creative confidence

“If you can draw the 5 shapes above, then visual thinker Dan Roam says you are on your way to being able to draw anything – including people. With a focus on drawing for communication – not art – Dan can arm up your sketching skills in a matter of minutes. For example, Dan has 3 ways of drawing people (as he demonstrates us below) depending on what you want to get across: 1. Stick figures are very simple and convey mood or emotion – especially if you want to make the head one third of total size of person, so you have more room for showing expression. 2. Block figures add a rectangular torso and are good for showing motion or different body postures; 3. Blob figures (also known as star people) don’t show emotion or action well, but provide a quick way to draw groups and relationships.”

learn how to dare creative confidence

“Dan doesn’t exactly teaches you to draw. He just teaches you how to make better use of the simple drawing skills you already have. With people who draw well, perfectionism can be every bit as crippling as a lack of confidence in non drawers. Non artists need reassurance – and maybe a drawing lesson or 2 – so that they can express themselves in rough sketches when a picture is more powerful than words. And the artists need encouragement to set their perfectionism aside to draw a few simple lines that communicate the essence of their idea. Both need the kind of supportive culture that ignores the quality of their sketches and focuses on the quality of their ideas. Wherever you fall on the artists skill curve, half the battle is to resist judging yourself.

“Courage is the accumulation of small steps. What matters most in the end, though, is this: your belief in your capacity to create positive change and the courage to take action. Creativity, far from requiring rare gifts and skills, depends on what you believe you can do with the talents and skills you already have. And you can develop and build on those skills, talents and beliefs. As Hungarian essayist Gyorgy Konrad once said,

Courage is Only the Accumulation of Small Steps.” 

how to dare
Photo by – Hannah Mckernan

 

 

Why we love specific fashion clothes

It’s no surprise to you that even if you say you are not interested in fashion, that you actually mean it. Of course you are interested! You use clothes and style and common sense to look good anyway. Fashion does not necessarily contains trends or high street clothes or designer items. Fashion is our personal style and the way we choose to present ourselves to the world. The first time I realised why women love fashion so much was after reading more about the Duchess of Yorkshire Georgiana Cavendish (Yes, my mom named me after a duchess and well, I live hopefully to at least reach her toes in terms of accomplishments for the world), who loved fashion very much and used fashion as a means of changing society, showing her mind, her thoughts, her self to the world, expressing her inner world to the people around her. That’s when I realised why we love specific fashion clothes or items. 

why we love specific fashion clothes
Photo Credit – @BrookeCagle

It is because they remind us of a specific feeling we have when we wear them. It is because that specific clothing item was worn or seen in a very specific moment of our lives, when we registered that to obtain as an example the feeling of success or the feeling of happiness or the feeling of security or the feeling of tranquillity or the feeling of total freedom and peace someone who highlighted or made us believe they feel that way was wearing something very similar to what we want. Because our brains do shortcuts and the logical flow of events here is something as it follows:

I see this person who seems to be happy and has everything she or he wants. I like the way he or she is dressed. I like what she or he inspired me to feel or think or even act on. I want to feel like that too. Therefore, intuitively and subconsciously we will choose everything possible from that image we have in our brains of that situation to bring it to reality in our lives. And that may mean purchasing that dress or that hat or those shoes. Because in our minds, we collect those small pieces and we will soon re-create the puzzle we had seen before and we too will be happy.

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

It is a mixed feeling of confusion and belief that it is the things that are bringing happiness or success to that person, but it is actually the feelings we sense from that person, its energy, its life that we feel attracted to and which we actually deep down desire. Sometimes we do not have the financial situation to get those items. But we never forget them, we may believe we do, but the next time (which can also actually be even in years time) we see something similar to that life perfect image we hold in our minds, we are reminded we want that. And we say, I really love this piece of clothing. It suits me so well. I love it so much. And we buy the item.

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

We buy the feeling we believe that item will bring to us. Of course, there are times and lots of times, when what we buy is actually worth it because first of all, even though deep penetrated into our souls and maybe even forgotten that its root to us liking it comes from the past, it really suits us and it does look amazing on us. Because whenever we recorded that image of the situation in our brains, we recorded very well if we would actually also look good in that. We use our brains to analyse so much that it is like our second language, and so we do not realise its power. We know very well what and how to wear something to be beautiful. Of course, I have to make an amendment and a sort of a disclaimer: you must have a bit of a common sense to understand that you do not need to leave your house in a bra or in extremely short shorts or skirts to feel attractive or successful or something alike our common up side down media portrayed value idols. I am not referring to that.

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

I will give you an example. When I was younger, my mom used to wear lots of skirts and dresses that seem to flow with her when she was walking. This is how I remember it. They were colourful and looked so good on her. I remember one time when she came to visit us (myself and my brother) when we were on a summer holiday with our grandparents. She had a flowery summery mid skirt along with a sleeveless body-con type like top. She had heeled wedges, hair in the wind and a stylish bag or that is what it felt to me back then and her now vintage cat eye sunglasses. I can envision that moment quite clearly and it was a hot summer day and she looked amazing. So feminine, so powerful, so lovable and so elegant and full of dignity if you understand what I mean. That image has been in my mind for such a long time, (as I remember I was around 10 years old when I pressed that record button in my brain), that only recently I realised that is the main reason I like to dress like that! That’s the reason I like heels, because I felt in that moment that my mom felt amazing wearing her clothes, and felt amazing wearing her skirt and it felt to me she is feminine yet strong and bold and having the power to achieve EVERYTHING she wants. And that feeling is what I wanted to get. She was wearing something that I knew I need to wear myself to feel like that and become as such. Now, bear in mind, I am a fine observer. I see details especially when in relation to psychology and the human mind workings. I am very introspective and that;s probably due to my introvert nature. That’s how I developed this judgemental mind around clothes. My clothes and what I like to wear. So, when I finally wear items creating the look from my subconscious mind, I actually do feel strong, feminine, capable and so beautiful, as if everything is possible. I have a special pleasure of collecting wedges. Well, I guess, we now know why! It’s easy to walk in it, they look great, you are taller and more elegant, especially when wearing a skirt. Lady like style.

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

This is how a woman expresses herself. She envisions what she wants to feel like without consciously being aware of that, then she follows the trends and at one point in time, there it is the dress or fashion item that she needed to bring her to the successful life she desires. Sometimes, we register incorrect patterns of success. Clothing that is no longer appropriate for our ages or for women in general. Every single one of us has made that mistake at least once. But most of the times, from what I have realised and lived, when we admire someone very much, we are extremely attentive to how they wear themselves in the world, how they speak, how they look, what accessories they wear and so on, we observe so well the details in those moments because we are very curious and we want to have the same lifestyle as that particular person we look at to. So, when we see something we believe looks amazing because that person influences us with its perception and because we admire and trust its thinking, we too, unknowingly become obsessed with it too, and we will buy that item with the next occasion. Again, that may even be in one year or a couple of years or even more or maybe less. But, what’s a fact, is that, we love specific fashion items because they represent something very deep to us, a feeling which we want to feel, a success we want to live, a life we want to have. They fashion items are part of that dream life or feeling and to achieve that, we also use material stuff to get that feeling. We do use our logic too, sorry to disappoint you, if you were going to say something mean, but this is how the brain actually works. Through shortcuts to keep us happy.

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle

When we chase specific fashion items, we chase specific feelings of success or freedom or happiness which are associated with that image that we recorded in the first place. 

We express ourselves so subtle. This is what I have been collecting lately on my desired tkmaxx clothes folder.

Would any of these make you feel you like it too?

Coral Embroidered Strapless Mini Dress

Maybe you have your own story to it?

Navy Umbrella Print Waterproof Trench Coat TULCHAN

What are you chasing after? 

Vanilla Cream Floral Print Kimono STELLA NOVA

It seems to me I am chasing freedom of expression, peace, success and happiness. EVERYTHING 🙂 

Maybe you notice that I am creating outfits out of all the items I like

lue & White Pineapple Print Skater Dress

I have wrote another similar post here, with more fashion loves! 

I hope you have enjoyed reading this, thank you so much for taking your time to read through my blog! Let me know if you have discovered your reasons for liking specific fashion items down below!

why we love specific fashion clothes why we wear certain clothes
Photo Credit: @BrookeCagle