Internal alignment as a key to happiness

Happiness

All human beings want the same thing: to be happy. And yet you have heard that so many times, happiness is not a destination but a journey.

So much of what we do or what we think and what we feel is coming from how much we are aligned or not. Aligned with our own core values. Aligned with who we are deep down. Aligned with our feelings, and our emotions. Aligned with our logic and rationality. Aligned with our gut and intuition. Aligned with our genius inside us, aligned with our own potential.

When we feel that deep alignment not only we are highly energized, full of enthusiasm, ready to move mountains, but also we have a sense of purpose and fulfillment as well as a deep sense of connection with ourselves and with others.

The main question is: what makes us feel aligned?

In coaching we speak about holographic thinking, that ability to see many perspectives at once. That is a concept that my dear Bruce D Schiender the founder or Ipec speaks a lot of. That capacity of going through life using like a tree dimensional image: seeing a situation like a whole and in the same time, not only thinking of one dimension but of each of three dimensions. Internal alignment is part of this process. And my coaching clients probably know this by heart now, we speaking about the triangle.

Imagine an equilateral triangle where the 3 angles are logic, emotions, intuition. When we are at balanced all our angles are equals, and we are standing in the middle feeling fully connected. We hear all the messages, from our logic, from our emotions and from our intuition. And when all the messages go in the same direction, when we know that this is the way, when we feel that this is the way and when we sense that this is our way, nothing can stop us.

Why is that important?

First, because we only have one life. Imagine what kind of life we can have from that perspective? Imagine all that we could experience, all that we could achieve, all that we could build, all that we could live. For real, your own life. There is no limit to that imagination nor to the life we deserve and can have.

Second, because you, me and like all humans we want to be happy; as my dear Geshe Tenzin Damchoe teaches: happiness is not something that we obtain in a second, or in a day or in a week or even in a year; it is a permanent intention, practice, attention, we keep moving into that direction. Geshe-la speaks about how long it takes to grow an apple. We start with a seed and from there till we can pick and eat an apple a lot of things must happen. We need to water it, and allow the sun the time to do its job, and we learn patience, and joy of seeing the seed becoming a little green sprout and slowly growing into a tree and blooming  its first flowers and eventually we see the fruits starting to grow, and turning red and ready for us.

It does not happen overnight.

And yet it takes just 1 minute to cut it, to kill a tree.

The same with our happiness journey. It takes the patience and the joy of growing. The truth of path. The experience of moving forward. It is a permanent practice. The apple tree does not say “right now I am too tired to grow”. “I’ll take a break”. It does not complain about the wind blowing too fast, or the sun not being too warm. It just continues its growing, and eventually it will produce its fruits.

It takes time to grow an apple tree, and most important it takes the right seed. As Geshe-la smiles about why do you plant a chili seed expecting to get an apple?

Finally, as mentioned before it is far more easier to give up, many things happen in life, we can get sick, we can lose parents or loved ones, we can get cheated on, we can get stab  in the back by dear friends or partners, we can experience tremendous pain and suffering. And sometimes we just feel like giving up. It takes one big cut to put down an apple tree, with a minute or so. So being aware of that, paying attention to that and having a conscious approach on understanding when we are lacking alignment and instead of giving up to seek what can put us back in alignment it is a an amazing tool and with practice can became our norm. When we know about internal alignment we know when to stop, and instead of cutting that tree down as it does not longer produce a single apple to find out how we can get  back in deep full alignment with self. When our mind, body and soul are aligned we start healing, we start growing again, we start seeing results, we start smiling again. We move forward.

Imagine we meet a person and we want to have a deep connection with that person. It can be any relation: friendship, work, business, love. Where do we meet that person? We meet them where they are at. Meaning they come with their own history, believes, values, experiences, feelings, thinking process, blockages, and so more. So ignoring that, we move directly into judgement, he/she is like that. What do we know about their journey? Who are we to say this is good or this is bad. They do live their own life.

To move forward, imagine we meet them not only where they are at but also where we are at. We come with our own luggage, of emotions, and blockages, and beliefs, and judgments, and so much more.

Imagine what kind of life experience and connection we could have by coming from a place of knowing who we are.

Internal alignment is that : being opened to listen to all the information we have: In this particular situation what is my logic telling me? what are  my emotions telling me? what is my intuition telling me?

We all have access to this information, it just takes practice to tap into those messages and be able to observe.

It takes trust that one could listen, one could access, one could decide not out of fear but in a conscious present way.

And what happens when we are not aligned: the short answer is “We are disengaged from our own life”.

Remember our triangle:

In our western society we are trained to use our brain. To be rational, to be Carthusians, to think through. Brain is a beautiful instrument; In the same time, what is happening when over used? It does not longer work. Like a knife we over sharp it no longer cuts. How many times have you feel that you keep going again and again and again around a problem without finding a solution? Why, because we go into overthinking. We get trapped. Because, in our mind we are always right. Logic is a fantastic decision tool, we need to be able to use our own logic in order to operate in life, to make decision and to move on. Yet it can easily go in overdoing as well. In trying to prove we are right all the time. Finding arguments why this shall be like this and not like this. And when too many conditions have to happen in the same time, and some are not there, the logical connections can no longer operate. And we turn in circle again and again and again. Thinking:  “I cannot find a solution; or, there is no solution”. Remember how many times you felt this way… No matter how much we think we cannot see it. Now by doing so not only we increase frustration, we are blocked by no decision, we are also increasing our mental tiredness. Therefore, making even more complex the decision process. Going back to our triangle, what happens when the logic angle becomes too big; what happens with the other 2 angles? They become smaller, almost inexistent. When in overthinking we cut ourselves from the other information that could provide the right data to move forward.

The same when we are using too much our own emotions. Emotions are the most beautiful things to have to experience life. Humans come with emotions. Now most of us in the western societies we are trained to move away from our emotions, like not to be seen or judged as weak, etc[1]. When we feel too many emotions, we can quickly be overwhelmed by them. When we feel too much sadness, we feel numbed and not able to take any actions. When we feel too much anger , we could do things that we regret after a while, blinded by our anger. When we feel too much fear we could be completely paralyzed and not able to move forward. And when we feel too much joy, we could take inconsiderable risks as we cannot longer see the danger. Now imagine what is happening with our triangle when we have that. The logic and the intuition angles are so small we can definitely not use them much.

Finally, what is happening when we don’t consider our intuition? When we think that voice inside of us is not real. When we ignore it, when we cut it down by overthinking or overwhelming emotions? What dreams we do not fulfill? What journey we do not take? What life experience do we have? And overall what an immense source of sorrow and regrets. We know this deep down ourselves, yet we don’t want that voice to speak loud any longer.

Working on internal alignment is one of the best things we could do to live life at our full potential. It does take practice, and the right coach to help you with the process. And the process may not always feel fun, but it is worth it. It may not be easy, yet it is worth it. And most important, there is a way to get there.

Happiness is not an intangible, unachievable, unrealistic target. It is a way of living when we learn how to practice and honor life. As long as we know and trust there is a way. Awareness is the first step, when we know better we do better.

Here are 3 steps to keep this moving forward:

  • Create your own triangle, you can draw it on your journal, on a vision board, you can take a picture of it and save it as a back screen for your phone or your computer. Make it visible for you so it can be a simple reminder that alignment is the key and that is up to you to be aware and to achieve it.
  • Start practice this every day, every time you may have a decision to take:
    • What is that I feel right now about that step? What is the message of that emotion? Write it down.
    • What is my logic telling me about it? Write it down.
    • What is my intuition telling me about this? Write it down.
    • Sometimes the messages will be perfectly aligned, sometimes not, yet even when they are not, you will be able to take a logical decision, or an intuitive decision, or an emotional decision, and any of these 3 will be taken in full conscience. Not out of fear.
  • Ask yourself: right now what decision do I want to take? What kind of life experience do I want to have? And who is in charge of taking that decision? Most people live like they are immortals. Yet when you look back at your life what is something you wish you could have done, experienced, felt, sensed, known… Now that you know better what are you willing to do?

Today you can still write the script of your life, you are the author, and you are the actor. Enjoy.

[1] https://medium.com/@rgomeaja/the-beauty-of-states-of-soul-5-tips-to-welcome-all-emotions-3f6d63506d7c

The 5 powers we all have on social media

For those asking about how to deal with social media, who or what to follow, what and how to publish, here a slightly longer article to give a different view on social media, and on the 5 powers we all have on facebook, instagram, linkedin, etc.

In this new time of crisis and coronavirus we all spend more time online and on social media. This is becoming our reality today and it is here to stay. How do we make sure we use this time efficiently?

Social distancing, and social media. The words we use the most right now…
To start with, the physical distancing is not social distancing.

How do I know that? Because of the deeper connections I experience every single day online, as I doing the world tour every day. Literally every day from Kenya to Russia, from Japan to USA, from Dubai to Australia, name it, I am blessed to connect with clients, friends, partners every single day. Deep, meaningful, and beautiful connections.
I am forever grateful not to the coronavirus in itself as I am aware of the tragedy linked to it, but for the consequences and these amazing times that offered to me. I love that in one of the talks I was having when someone mentioned the coronavirus is not a disaster it is a virus. The consequences of it could be a disaster. As I’m not a science person I cannot argue or express on the virus itself, yet one of the things that made me reflect about it is the tragedy of deaths and the celebration of life that happen in the same time. Almost like a reminder of what life is all about, about our own mortality, about our own time on earth, about our own decisions, about our own life experience, and about our own power.

We don’t know much, and yet we can do so much.
We may not know how and what created or spread the virus, and at the same time maybe we don’t need to know. I mean I trust the scientists, the virologists, the doctors will assess that, and they will gather the answers and the actions to follow. What I mean by not needing to know, is that without a clear knowledge in virology I will not become an expert overnight, so I’ll have/chose to trust the experts. In the same way I don’t know how the TV works and I can still enjoy watching it. I don’t need to know everything to have a beautiful life experience. And I choose to trust others that are experts in their fields as this is how the humanity evolves.
Besides, me trying to understand by myself will take a long time in absence of specific skills, competences, knowledge a science person has. Secondly it will not necessarily bring the right answers, or answers that are strong enough to be relevant. Finally, it will just take me away from other things that I may know how to do, where I have more skills and experience and to put my entire effort in area I could contribute more and have more relevance. The beauty of interdependence is that seeing the planet as a group of individuals, we can specialize within the group so we can have different knowledge and each of us to contribute to a higher humanity knowledge.
Moreover, as I may not have the relevant skills and information, all that may happen is for me to be or feel overwhelmed and therefore a feeling of losing control, which goes into panic and so forth. And panic is what will take away from my own capability of taking decision and of acting and growing.
Learning how to think, learning how to understand and translate information, being able to create an opinion and a thinking process based on relevant information, relevant questions, that is what may need to happen.
Now what is the main issue here? Why people are not trusting what they see or hear
First: in an area of available, easy to access and free information there is not more discipline of research, people want to have answers fast and therefore they go on Google for anything. And while I am sooo grateful for Google to make available tons of information, there is an issue with the quality of information available. The problem is not that the information that there is not accurate exists, the problem is that we are not trained nor patient enough to check and pick what may be relevant.
Second is that one of the most beautiful and needed profession is dying nowadays. I refer to journalism, journalism is technically a way of presenting facts in an objective way so people can have access to information. Journalism nowadays becomes personal opinions, scandal sells, and whatever a celebrity eats seems much more relevant than real society issues. A journalist nowadays shows the side of the story he/she believes in, in the best of the case, or the one that sells in most of the cases. A journalist nowadays will come fast with a story, without taking months and months of documentation and research and inquiry on a topic. That’s one of the saddest things today. And of course, this is not for every journalist yet those high professional ones tend to be more the exception than the norm.
Thirdly, we are or technically can be social medial all of us. Each of us can be his own television, his own editing company, his own radio station, his own newspaper.
• I can publish my own book on amazon, no matter how relevant that content is or not (editing house)
• I can do my own podcast, and say whatever I want no matter how relevant it is or not (radio station)
• I can do my own youtube channel no matter how relevant it is or not (television station)
• I can write and publish articles on my own blog in whatever topics no matter the knowledge I have or not (newspaper)
And that can be accessed by anyone. Anyone can see my tv station, listen to my radio station, read my newspaper, and my books. Anyone, no matter where they are in the world. That gives so much power when we think about it. All it takes is the right level of marketing, and knowledge on how to make people click on it.
Now while that is amazing and in so many ways, a treasure in itself, it is also one of the most dangerous things in the current context:
• It is enough to know how to do it and it can be used in a very dangerous way
• Even when it starts with a good heart and good intention, the information could not only be absolutely wrong but also having a very bad influence on people
• Most people not only don’t take time to assess but they don’t even know how to do it. Because we no longer teach kids ethics or philosophy or debates, or rhetoric etc etc. We no longer help people developing their own thinking ability. Questioning, doubting, looking for more information before reaching a conclusion or an opinion. And evolve those opinions after.
• Most people think that if they have a sad story and they manage to overcome it, it will be the same for anyone who will copy paste their experience. Which is far for being the truth.
• Most people think that applying a solution which has somehow provided a level of results for themselves will provide the same for others. Which is obviously not working.
• Most people will just be led by their own ego and showing off, versus taking a step back and ask what is the relevance of what am I saying and for whom.
How do I know all these? Is because I spend my life talking with people who want to grow and succeed. And who have read a lot and who have tried a lot, and they are still not there. Why, because if it was working we all would have been happy and wealthy and successful. And the majority of people are not.
Social media today is not necessary having the role it could have. And we are all responsible for it.
Of course a lot of things are happening now online. And I could not be more grateful for it. But how responsible are we for what we publish. And even for what or who we follow.
One of my dearest friends Shen Lim, who is a co-founder of Cool Japon TV is talking about the 4 profiles we could have on social media: the follower, the expert, the influencer and the business influencer. And is nothing wrong to be in any of these cases. Or to have a different profile depending on different parts of our life. But that is for another post.
Basically and without caricaturizing too much, most people will be followers, they have a social media account and go on social media to follow other people. They just get the information, hours and hours on Facebook, Youtube, Instagram, Tik Tok whatever. To a point where now they realize it is even toxic as they don’t even know what happen with their time. While others are alive and living most people are just following the life of a handful of people on social media. With all the consequences that follows. The expert is the one that goes on social media and assess different channels and information trying to understand more and have more perspectives on what is happening there instead of taking for granted everything. They will probably be more selective in terms of who they follow. After we have an influencer, which means someone who has a community, an influencer is someone who has followers and who puts content over there more or less systematically. Now the things is that those that are influencers are not necessary those who have the knowledge or things to share (and I am not saying they are all like this) just those who understand how the system works and take advantage of it. Those who want followers and likes. The more the better. No matter why, no matter the purpose. And after we have the business influencers those who have a system, who put a lot of content in a very systematic way. Usually the people who understood how to use social media to monetize it, like a business, but overall who have enough content to create a trend, a direction. And I have to say some are doing a great job, Gary Vee being one of them for example.
Now why is that dangerous and what is the point of this article.
The danger comes from overall a lack of discernment. Instead of using information to grow our brains, we use less our brains when on social media and therefore reducing its function over all. The same we overuse our emotions, we generally connect from the loneliness of our own screen, and compare. And believe what is said as the ultimate truth, we believe that they, the others all have an amazing life, and love, and joy and happiness, and we are the only one left out. A lot of depression, and deeper mental disorder may result or some even proves it happens already. But overall is a source of sadness as people no longer make the effort of connection, while this is how the social media started. And then it goes into a lack of actions, a lack of going outside and watch the sky, instead of watching a picture of the sunset someone posted. A danger of not meeting someone because is more comfortable and safe to meet them from afar. Etc etc
Now while I write this we are still in lockdown and I am very much aware that not everything is possible now. And this is exactly my point. The danger is what the social media is or can became tomorrow out of fear, after overdoing it for 2 months or so. And in the same time what an amazing beautiful powerful opportunity we all have here.
The coronavirus imposed physical distancing and an increase usage of media, online, etc. that was what most probably saved the most of us, and I am forever grateful. It is today my bread and butter in so many ways.

And I want to encourage all of us to take that power. And to be responsible. And to grow together in this new era of social media and online. And while the online and virtual space will continue to increase, to also make the effort when the lockdown ends to not stay by default in your own media cocoon. And dare to go outside… But that’s for another article.

And if you wonder how to increase your power, let me share with you the 5 powers of social media and why this is in your hands today
1. The power of authenticity: we all want to be successful on social media, I get it, and it’s respectful and understandable. The reality is we all have a huge responsibility while being on media. And there is no secret, the more authentic we are, the more successful we are, including on social media; we don’t have to be more of someone else to get that, all we need to do is to be more of ourselves in that space as well. Think about of a day to day situation, you’ll finally get the ones that are lying or pretending and you want to stay away from them. It is the same on social media. Take a little bit of distance: who do you follow and why,… and whatever you put out there, be yourself and the your tribe will see it. You don’t have to be in a specific way to have or win friends. It’s by being yourself that friends will come.
2. The power of persistence: like everything in life it takes time to build any relation. And social media is a relation. There is nothing that happens over night with no effort, and if it does go viral chances are it disappears as fast as it came. The persistence means you showing up, authentically no matter what. No matter if you are sick, no matter if you are sad, no matter if you have issues, no matter what. Because on social media just like in life this is what happens. We are sick or sad or down and we still go to work, and we still live, and we still do things. So the same in social media, including sharing when you have a bad day instead of putting a fake content about how great all things are, or not even putting a content because you no longer have the energy. The persistence is doing it for yourself and for your followers, even if those come in small or very small numbers. Persistence means you believe in what you are doing. And believing in what you want is the first step to achieving it.
3. The power of sharing: I so love when people share. I guess it was one of the core values I got from my family and from growing up in not the wealthiest country or environment and I speak a lot about it. I am grateful I was born there. Is the value of sharing that anyone finds in these types of societies? And when you go to social media, this is exactly the same. Sharing! Think back of the power of sharing. What do you share? Do you share what you have extra, do you share what is the less quality? What do you share in your social media and why is the same with what do you share in life… There is this saying that rich people give and poor people share. Are you sharing to show off, or are you sharing because you care, because of who you are and what you stand for. I can go for ages on this one, hope you got the point
4. The power of caring : that’s one of the daily reflection I have form my dear teacher Geshe Tenzin Damchoe. He is asking is caring a sharing or is sharing a caring?Caring means that it is not just a technical action, you push a key on a phone or computer, anonymously from the safety of your home. Detaching like we are not humans, like robots instead of we just use a machine, a tool. Caring means connecting back to us humans using this tool, using this machine. Caring means paying attention, taking time, going deeper. Caring on social media means reflecting twice between hitting a like button, caring means taking time to leave a comment, when you have something to say, and add, and most of us we do have after reflecting on it. Caring means contributing. Caring means take time to share and say publicly thank you to someone who did something for you and you benefit from it. Caring means giving credit. It does not take anything away from us, is actually quite the contrary. And it is even working from an algorithm point of view.
5. The power of detachment : probably one of the most important power we all have. This means to not post in order to be obsessed by views and likes. To switch off social media, to not make it our life. And to not be attached tothe result of it. Doing it authentically, persistently, and things will happen. Enjoy the journey without worrying about the result, be a responsible leader, contributor, and human in your life and in social media; that’s not another space that is our space, and our reality. It is not virtual, it is real even more real than ever today.

I trust we can all make a difference. And I thank you for taking the steps towards it. When we know better we do better. That is all. When we think back on why social media started, and life in general, we see there is a different more responsible and beautiful way of living and a richer life experience, let’s celebrate social media by using and experiencing it as much as we do with life, going back to the basics, going back to the core values, and deep connections.

Why to be ready now? 5 steps to get practical

Every day I get the same questions: When do you think it will end? How long it will still take?

And my answer is always the same: I am not a doctor nor a science person, so I will not advance on giving you data I cannot support, nor I am relevant to give.

No, all that I do is to observe. Despite the lockdown I’m spending every day in a world tour, from the comfort of my own home. That is quite easy for me for many reasons, out of which here are two:

  • I’m used to travel, as my network for the last 20 years or so has been built on people from all over the world. My friends, my connections, my values are not challenged or changed by the current situation.
  • I’m also used to working at distance. Because my clients being from all over the world, I am used to and still  connect with them daily on remote basis, from one continent to another, in addition to my travel as I couldn’t have been be in all places at the same time.

Therefore, in this new times as I like to call the coronavirus time, I’m still listening and observing people from all over the world, I discuss with people who have much higher knowledge and experience than myself, and that is allowing me to get deeper insight on what is going on around the planet.

And from there I’m realizing that the question of time is absolutely personal: some people find time to move extremely slow and are absolutely bored and had enough of all these, while others are finding time to fly away too fast.

And all these indicate one important part: we are all different in front of a crisis. We are not all equipped in the same way, we don’t have the same way of thinking or making sense out of this, we don’t have the same lockdown conditions to add to that and so on and so forth.

The main question is not how long it will take because honestly nobody knows. Not only how long we will be in lockdown, but mostly what will happen after, how long it will take to go back to “normal” and what will be “normal”. What differences we may see, what effect this crisis will leave behind. But that is for a different post.

For today, I think the right question is not how long it will take but what is happening right now.

Because right now is all we have. Independent of the crisis we have no clue how much time we have in this life. We have no clue if we go out and die hit by a car. It is not in our control.

Except people, like always, think and act like they are immortal, and they think and act like they have time.

When talking about death people run away, it is a scary and not very pleasant topic for most, and I get it, it does make sense, who wants to think of that… yet in the same time, it is the only thing we all know for sure, the fact that one day we will die. And meditating on death, including self-death is one of the most motivating things one can do. Because that is a way to be pushed into realizing the power of now.

Going back to the initial question, the issue is not to find out how long it will take, the issue is what we are doing right now.

And to move forward I will challenge anyone asking me the how long question, to reflect on why is that relevant for them? Where is this question coming from? What difference would that make to know for certain… Like what difference would that make to know when our own death will happen? The fact that we don’t know is actually a great thing, because it helps our mind to make the best of today instead of waiting for or being concerned about tomorrow.

Now most people who are asking this question, are people that worry lots about tomorrow. We know that living in the past gives depression, living in the future gives anxiety, while living in the now gives presence. Now we exist, now we are active, now is all that we have and now is the best time to do whatever we want to do.

People worrying about tomorrow, are usually people who enjoy having control over “everything”, they have to feel in control, and when things are not, they are losing it. For those reading these and thinking “yea, this is me, I am a control freak”, as we call them more or less seriously, the most important thing for you to know is that is absolutely normal to freak out when things are not in your hands. And yes, how much control do we have over when the crisis will end? None. Therefore, what is the advantage of asking this “how long” question? You are smart, even if someone comes up with an answer, how true or relevant that would be… How ready are you to take that answer for granted, and what for? Would that give you a sense of control, or would just have a paralyzing effect over your own mind, like stopping the question for 1 hour or 2 till you’ll find a new one, or realize that the answer cannot be sufficient nor relevant. Like always, being a control freak is not a definitive sentence, each one of us can still choose that option providing it brings value; as well as during this time we all have the opportunity to improve and grow.

In these specific times, those who learn to let go on one hand and cope with what is happening on the other hand are those who can tap into their potential. All nice and easy yet how do we do that.

Indeed, the let go part is one that is challenging right now, also because most people will use things to help them let go that are more difficult to do in current conditions: like exercising, or finding a quiet space for themselves.

Coping with what is happening, on the other hand, is accepting first that this is here now. It is like when we drop a tomato sauce jar on our kitchen floor and the sauce is all over the place. In that specific moment we don’t go into lamentation on “oh no that is not possible, this cannot happen, this is not fair”, and so on and so forth. We don’t go away and hope it will pass. We just start cleaning, right away. Sure most of us are not happy about it, yet who has time for that. It needs to be clean, we do it, end of the story. So that’s the first thing. The second is to focus on what is in our control. What is that we still have in our own hands?[1]

And finally, while we keep thinking of how long this will take, let’s consider where do we put our energy? How well is that working for us? Worrying about something has no impact on how that something will actually happen. Therefore, all that it does is consuming our energy. Energy which, while being spent on worrying, cannot be “invested” in something that matters the most for each of us.

Which brings me to this new question. Let’s imagine this is all over tomorrow.

Now allow me to ask this: How ready are you?

On a scale of 1 to 10, think about how ready you are from a personal perspective, and how ready you are from a business perspective. 1 being not ready at all.

It is not a tricky question. When answering those 2 questions, please try to be honest with yourself and rate it as objectively as you can.

Some of us may discover that they are fully ready from a personal perspective. Most extroverts have a real difficult time staying in the house, by themselves or with very few people around. They are ready to go out. Actually, they will never go inside for a long, long time when this will be finished, or at least this is how they feel right now.

Others are not at all ready, they enjoy this time and space, they enjoy the silence, they enjoy the quality time and the essential focus this unexpected time off offers to them. They don’t feel ready to take public transportations again, or to wake up at a specific time, or to spend hours in traffic, etc. They are enjoying a life they did not think was possible, therefore not very much ready to renounce on it.

Now from a business (career) perspective each of us may be surprised to answer that question. “Oh, this is already over? What did I achieve during this time? Oh my, I said that I will use this time to practice yoga every day, or to get fitter, or to lose weight, or to write an ebook” or so and so.

No matter where we think we are right now, asking this honest question it will allow each of us to be aware of our own reality.

And providing we are not as ready…, how can we become more ready?

We can all take a few moments to reflect, breath and write down a few ideas.

The good news is that we still have time. And we can still act today. Because today is all that we have.

For those wondering how to be more ready, here are 5 steps I found useful:

  • Make a list of what really matters and what you want to achieve during this lockdown, at least 1 significant thing for yourself as a person and 1 for your business or career. By the way this does not need to be huge. It must be relevant for you and achievable in current conditions. Let me take an example: if you want to learn Spanish during this time, that’s achievable from home. If you want to cross the ocean in solitary trip, that may not be possible, yet what is possible is to still prepare and be ready for when that will be achievable, hope that resonates. Have that list somewhere on the fridge, or your bathroom mirror so you do not forget about it.
  • Make sure you have a plan. Actually 2 of them (personal and business). Write down what are the steps that are necessary for you to achieve the personal goal and the business/career goal on your list.
  • Make sure you are part of a group that is allowing you to connect daily and have a reminder of your daily action. And if you do not have one feel free to join our daily calls with http://www.imnparis.com.
  • Make sure you have an accountability partner. There is a lot more we can achieve when someone is informed about our goal on one hand and ask us about it on the other hand.
  • Make sure you are measuring and celebrating the progress every single day. At the end of a day, especially in lockdown you want to have 1 thing that makes you feel proud, good about yourself that you have done. It can even be a 10 minutes workout that is in line with you being fit or your personal health goal. We all need something to celebrate and say “yeah, that was not such a bad day after all”.

The truth is we have no clue how long it will take. And the truth is that is not that important after all. What is important is that this is our life, our time, and it is only up to us to make the best out of it no matter the external conditions.

 

[1] this point was largely addressed in the post https://medium.com/me/stats/post/113c7d1bc0bb

5 winning actions during the lockdown!

Confined!

Some of the words that are the mostly repeated, lockdown, lock in, jammed in your homes…

The latest estimation of people confined at home around the planet is 1 billion people and most probably the number will grow in the days to come.

Some of us have been already confined for 1 2 3 weeks or more for different reasons.

And while the first few days could be a little challenging like I heard so many of my clients and friends saying: “I am an outdoorsy person”, “I am not mentally prepared to stay in”, etc, and the following few days are a little more optimistic as they got to sleep a more or watch movies they did not have a chance to see; when we start getting into the 2nd or 3rd week things are less exciting. The energy is less and less, the optimism as well. “It was OK for a while but how long will that last?”

Indeed, we have no visibility nor control on how long the confinement will last, and mostly within which conditions. For example, as long as going out for grocery is still permitted is much different than not being allowed to leave our homes, which is what happens in parts of the world.

This being said, it is important to remember 2 major things:

· First off “this too shall pass”. Or as someone dear to me put it, this will end, this is not the end of the world.

· Second of all, no matter how much you enjoy or not this time, “this too is your life”

Now when we cannot control things that are happening to us, we can always control what we do, what we think, what we decide, what and how we show up, who we are, etc.

Because we do, we can decide to keep ourselves healthy, to “watch our mind when we are alone, and watch our words when with others”, we can still control our day, we can still choose what kind of information or connection we have and with whom, we can still turn off the TV for example, or pick up a book, or put on the music we like, all these are just a few examples and still in our control.

For me one of the biggest values is freedom; yet I guess when we really have a deep thought about it, what is freedom, can we honestly say that because we are lockdown, we are not free? We can debate on that, yet it is going back to the main definition of freedom for each of us. We can still pretty much do, be, think what we want to. What if instead of thinking someone is restricting your freedom because you are not allowed to go out, you choose, and you decide not to go out because of one of your core values are health, respect of others, and compassion for example. The action in itself is the same meaning “not going out”, yet is a huge difference between those who think they are forced to stay home and those who think they have chosen to stay home.

Yesterday I was on this amazing call with a Tibetan monk and one of the things I loved the most was what he said about our health. He was making a point about those who breathe fast may not live long, and we can talk more about it within which conditions, etc. yet the point was that when we are angry, crying, down on ourselves, we breathe fast, and working on our breathing during meditation practice for example is as important as any medication to stay healthy. He said the same thing, about the power of the mind, like there is not much value added in taking treatment proving our mind is full of negative thoughts, negative in the sense that: “this is not fair”,”I don’t deserve to die”, “I don’t want to feel so sick”, “why all these things happen to me when others are just fine”, “what did I do to get this illness”, “why me”, etc., etc.

Watching our thoughts is an important part of how well we are living our lives, no matter the life conditions we may have to face.

I will invite each of you to imagine few years from now, telling the story of what happen during these weeks. Imagine how you would like that story to be. Or even better why not start writing a story, take the time to put it on paper or on your computer. How would you like that story to be? Will you focus on how terrible those days have been or still highlighting the beautiful things that happen to you, how your life has evolved, how the world have changed before and after the corona virus of 2020…

Plenty of people around the globe are confined to homes. Yet not each of us will get out of this crisis in the same way. To go more practical on how to make the best out of this exceptional time, here are 5 things you may want to implement:

· The first thing is to have a schedule, a real agenda. With things to do, time to get out, shower, dress, and all the rest. Time to go into your morning routine, time for cooking and eating, time for sport. Time for working. And highly important, time to reach out and speak with friends and family. All that you may usually do on a normal week yet now you will change the way you do those, and you will do it daily. Have a schedule of your day is allowing you to:

o Take care of what is really important, essential.

o Make sure you have time for things that you want to see happen

o You take control of your day, instead of your day controlling you

· The second thing is to feed your mind properly. Now as important as the food you eat in order to still enjoy life and stay healthy is how you feed your mind. It is up to you who and what do you want to follow. Yet watching a news channel 24h/day 7/7 may be not the best idea. Watch how you feel when you do that: does that give you energy, enthusiasm, a feeling of purpose and fulfilling. And if not, turn it off. You can still watch the news during specific times you schedule for, and that’s it. What do you think it will happen in few hours you are not connected to the latest news? Not to mention they tend to keep repeating. Same for what and who you follow on social media, are you spending time watching what whomever said about this virus, or convictions, or opinions or whatever prediction of the future? Or are you using this time to feed your mind with new information, learning something new, connect and follow people you resonate more with, or give you the sense of energy, vitality, engagement trough life you are looking for. So many things are now available online, the choice is still yours.

· The third thing that I found extremely important is to breath and to expose yourself to day light. Things we do not have to think about in a normal day to day. Now I know most of us in big cities we have no gardens, no parks to go out, yet most of us we still have balconies or windows. A great practice is to just open your window and take the light and the air for at least 1 h a day. You may have the sun coming up as in part of the world we go in spring season, and the weather is nice and warmer, or it may still be cold with left over winter. No matter the temperature, you can still dress with appropriate clothing and open your window and enjoy for 1 h. You can do that in 2/3 times if 1 h seems a lot, especially if you may not have a chair you can use nearby etc. An alternative of this is to do some kind of sports while by the window, like stretching or putting your arms up in parallel, to take the most benefit of it. Natural light and sun light, even if the sun does not shine directly towards your window is great not only for your health but also for your mood and overall morale.

· The fourth thing is to allow time to meditate, listen to what your body, feelings, emotions and intuitions are telling you. Be fully in the moment. Now. This is an important time you have with yourself. The other day when I challenged a client to see the opportunities in this situation we came to speak about time. About how much he complained before of not having time. And now this is no longer an issue. For most the relation with time may be challenged during this period. For most you l realize how long time could be; and yet time is one of the blessings of this crisis. As you have time, allow some of it for yourself with no fear. Providing you are with family and friends, you can still step aside even in the bathroom to take time to be with yourself. Allow the fear to express if any, sense what danger that fear may indicate as a message, and take note on it. Allow any other emotions to come and welcome them and if you don’t know how, go and check the related post on it.[1]

· Finally, reflect on what you thought impossible and now you see it is possible. This is probably the one I love the most. In now days, so many people are telling us what is and what is not possible that some of us begin to trust, that indeed some things are impossible, we even repeat it to ourselves till we believe this is the absolute truth. Yet now days, we can also see impossible turned into positive. The planet is recovering much faster than we ever thought, we can spend so much less than we ever thought, we can stay inside the entire day, day after day, we can still be happy independent of what is outside, and so on and so on. Come on make your own list, I am sure you will find more things to add. And after you do this first list, go into a second list, what is something that you still believe is impossible, come on let it out, put it on that list, let’s see how many things you can come up with. Now that you know one day you will go out, what are the first things you’ll do, what will you enjoy the most, what is on that dream list you thought you will never do, what are the things you have put on hold, for someday, when I will be or I will have or I will do whatever it is you want to do. Come on make that list, and dream big, bigger than your fears, bigger than your excuses, bigger than that “It’s impossible” thought. Because you can see for yourself how wrong some people, information, believes were. You have seen it is possible, now what else will you make possible.

I cannot wait to read your lists, to hear your story, and to see your fulfilled smile and life unfolding for you.

I’m not saying is easy. I’m just saying is possible.

And to quote someone very smart, remember what we appreciate, appreciates. Hope, smiles, enthusiasm, positive energy just like the virus are contagious. Let s give it a try. Enjoy

[1] Check out the article on how to deal with our emotions https://medium.com/@rgomeaja/the-beauty-of-states-of-soul-5-tips-to-welcome-all-emotions-3f6d63506d7c

Life and business in time of Coronavirus. 5 hidden opportunities.

This morning I was thinking of all the new crisis generated by the Coronavirus and the related outcome in many areas of life and business.

And thought of this question: do you know of any emergency, difficult situation, unexpected stuff, or even a crisis, popping up at a convenient time?

Most of the time things just happen; even the most relevant experts are not always ready or prepared to see and predict all of the things coming up. And of course some of the things are more anticipated than others, and the world is more prepared. Yet overall it is not necessary about how well we anticipate a specific crisis that is probable to happen, but how do we keep ourselves prepared for whatever happens and how do we react when things don’t go as planned or the unexpected pops up, out of nowhere.

The current crisis is a result of a virus, that is dangerous enough for governments all over the world to take very drastic measures. Now, I am not a doctor nor a medical expert so I will not comment about how dangerous this is or is not, what the death rate is or why this shall be more serious than a season cold epidemic. I will just trust the experts in the sense that something may shift into the near future to create a bigger crisis and that prevention is always the best.

This being said, it still remains the situation as it is right now. In most countries we see not necessary a lot of death cases as a result of this virus, at least not at the time I am writing this, non the less there is a lot of impact on overall life and business. Schools getting closed which create an issue for parents, and finding solution for kids. Meetings and events rescheduled, which create a big issue for people who have been organizing those for months sometimes. A big list of ongoing projects on hold because this may not be the best time to move forward in time of uncertainty. And definitely much less travels which makes the airline and travel companies all over the world being the sector that would suffer the most in a first phase.

Now this in itself could be enough to be concerned about. Yet there is a big difference between being concerned about something and being panicked or even worried about it.

The main difference if that in a state of panic or worry, the mind is not functioning at the best of its ability. That makes sense because when in panic the human mind freezes so instead of finding solutions it goes into creating more catastrophic scenarios to add to the panic. And giving a change we all would love to tap into our full potential when expose to a crisis isn’t it.

As I usually explain there are 2 type of fears, one that is helping us survive which is exposing a sense of danger that pushes our brain to find a quick solution and react, and one that is slowly killing us. The first one appears when the danger is real, like a fire starts next to you, or someone is holding a gun to your head or similar. In that case you may find that running away is saving you for example. Stay with me on that one, I am not saying what is the best idea I am just saying that the mind will immediately come up with something to fight the danger. In a second case is the fear of a fire that will start in your home right now. No matter the probability for that to happen you may know people living in that fear of a fire starting in their home, or an earthquake or something similar. Now, the point is not to say how ridiculous that could be, but to explain a fact: to those people (and btw we all have our own “fire” fears expressed in our own ways) any logical approach will not help. They will act or be overwhelmed by a fear they sense as real. Except that in those situations, as the danger is not imminent the brain does not know how to react to move you away from that fear. The only thing the brain does is to add more catastrophe scenarios and developed even a higher fear, and that can go into panic attacks, or more not to name here.

The entire purpose is that: while the first type of fear is helping us survive and the fear will go down as we move away from danger, the second one will not allow us to live, and it will increase no matter how much logical explanation we used for that.

Why is important to establish in which case of fears we are? Mainly in order to know what we are doing next. The key here is that the second type of fear, the one linked to what may happen, it will manifest prior for the danger to actually be produced. Have you noticed for example that we are afraid of let’s say an exam or a doctor appointment, a public speech, etc before we go, and as soon that starts we forget about the fear and we concentrate on what we have to do?

That is an important point in dealing with fears, and eventually worry, anxiety and panic attacks.

Why we speak so much about this, because in the case of coronavirus we see a lot of people worrying and getting anxious about it. Which is understandable considering most people are not necessarily worried about themselves but in addition they worry about their kids or their elderly parents that could be more at risk in such a situation.

Now like I used to say it for a while now, worrying about something has no effect on how that situation will unfold tomorrow. The only effect it has is on how ready we ‘ll be when or if that risk happens.

Ok, so let’s say you are worried, ok, it makes sense, so what, now what?

You see as soon you turn it into action you may realize there is more to do than just lie in a bed covered in anxiety and waiting for you to die, or for the coronavirus to contaminate you and your loved ones.

There are opportunities that show up. Why not reflecting on those for example? Someone will have to. Why not you?

When a crisis happens, the current models are challenged, and we talk not only about current business models, but also thinking models, ways of living, things that happen without us thinking of them, that have become natural or habits.

And it is not because they are ours and feel so natural that they are not to be challenged, reconsidered or that they are still relevant in today’s world.

The beauty of a crisis is that it forces us to see things differently. It pushes us into admitting that whatever it was working so far can not longer be applied in the same way. We can no longer play the ostrich, the crisis is here, something must change.

There are a few questions you may want to ask yourself to face the situation:

1. What is the opportunity here? Now, I do hear you, the situation is challenging what the heck she is taking about opportunity here. And when you have a deeper look, there are opportunities here and people already listed a few of them. The only difference is who can see them; is not the person who is in panic mode but those who are open and ready for something else. The biggest opportunity here is on an environmental side, with coronavirus already having such positive impact on the planet, to start with. The second is an opportunity to change the business model, like working remotely could take a different meaning from now on, and we could realize how much more we can do when we save time for travel for example. Or how much more productive we can be when focused on the task and not losing time in traffic, etc. The 3rd is the opportunity for the entire world to focus on a specific topic, adding a multitude of diverse minds focus on solving an unique problem; and how the world could collaborate without necessary going into never-ending meetings, and doing them based on videos conference and other media that are forcing people to be more focused and straight to the point. And I am sure each of you can come up with ideas linked to your own environment.

2. What is the panic or the anxiety adding to my life, or differently put how is this helping me? And if the answer is “nothing much, it does not help”, maybe this is the time to create a new projection for yourself. Why not creating a story that helps you instead of a horror movie that is freezing you. And that can also be created while writing or putting together a vision board of something that looks completely different than your fear today, something that you are excited to move into and experience.

3. What is your intuition telling you? When you go into time of crisis, you want to get as much aligned with yourself. In order to be aligned we use different type of messages. We have messages that are coming from our logics, messages that are coming from our emotions and messages that are coming from our intuition. Now what we aim for is to give all these messages space to be heard. When we overthink, we only hear the messages from our logic, when we are overwhelmed by fears or other emotions, we only hear those messages. It takes balance to give space to each logic and emotions to be heard and messages to be received and by doing so, allowing the intuition to come to you as well. We all know inside ourselves when we are at peace what are the things to take seriously and what are just exaggerated projection of our logic or our emotions.

Now, for those who are part of the millions of people who must already stay confined home and or have to change all their schedules, here are 5 things you may want to explore:

1. Providing you are with your kids or loved ones, why not enjoying it. When was last time you had time to just be with them all around you? What a joy to actually be there with them and have time to enjoy, right?

2. Providing you are by yourself, what an amazing opportunity to grow. In today’s world we always lack time. Now this is your time to learn something, or to rest, or to watch all the Netflix you want without feeling any guilt. I know some of you are now looking forward to have that time for themselves.

3. Providing you are a business owner, what a great moment to take that time away from your business, to have that helicopter view that is taking you away from day to day operations and allow you to see the bigger picture. And you also have some time to do that laser focus approach, to take a problem and think about solutions for 10 15 minutes. Asking yourself what is the root cause of it, and go deeper and deeper; there is a beauty in having time for this kind of exercises, when no calls or emails are coming in, because you may get answers that would be unavailable to you in a day to day situation.

4. Providing you are a consultant I think that is one of the greatest position to be right now, to assess the world and think of a different ways of doing business. Critical thinking, business design, are the areas where most businesses will need support, and this is almost the perfect time take out to allow us to think about solutions. The world will need a different way to do business and consultants (to use a general term) could be at the top of that different way of doing business; providing they will take time to think and challenge the existent instead of looking within today’s world to find solutions for a complete new situation. This is no longer a time to compare and look for best practice but more a time to assess and invent (like an internal disruptor) what could tomorrow solve the problems most businesses are facing today. You can definitely start by putting on a paper what are the challenges you, your clients or a business are facing today. When a problem is well structured a solution starts to be seen.

5. Providing you are a coach, people will need your more than ever. Take this opportunity to address topics that are needed for any of us, like what am I doing in this article, address fears, address building opportunities, address community when at distance and any topics that are helping people to see a different world out there; something to look forward to instead of something to be worried about. The world needs you and in a situation like this you as a coach have access to all the social media that is providing the means of communication to touch as many people possible.

Hope this is giving you a different perspective no matter where you are in the world and how the crisis is unfolding for you right now. Those who will survive will be those who will adapt faster to the new reality. Those who will see the opportunity instead of obstacles. Those who are using this time to reflect and find new ways of doing and being. Us as humans can go behind and above any situations, we just need to tap into this collective awareness and creativity and allow ourselves to create a new way of thinking. The great news is that we as an evolutive community created the current one, to begin with. So, we already know how to create a thinking model that works. And I can’t wait to see what this will bring to each of you.

Disrupt or be disrupted?

Providing you have 3 choices of companies a. Nokia/Kodak, b.Uber/Airbnb, c.Apple/Amazon, which one will you choose to run or even work for?

 

A common characteristic of businesses that are growing and are successful is that they start becoming very confident, looking much more on how to increase their profits than on how they can become sustainable on a long run. When we do not longer pay attention to the market and the way we do business someone else will do. The new comer will assess a business from the perspective existing clients’ needs and claims and they will bring up a new model that is fully responding to those needs. Even more, they will be “eyes-open” for those clients to highlight a pain-point not necessarily “visible” to them.

Instead of that any company could benefit from understanding what is that the clients are truly looking for, nor because the clients have no other choice on the market but because they get exactly what they want to begin with. As well as educating the clients with what new benefits they can get with an innovative service or product that company can/will launch.

In theory, it shall be easier for an existing company to 1. keep its clients when listening/responding to their needs and 2. drive the market higher, than for a new company to disrupt the market and take competitors’ clients. When a disruptor takes over though, it is a clear indication that the clients were not choosing the existing company due to their tremendous satisfaction level but out of habit or no other available choices.

An inside disruptive approach shall start by understanding market trends, and mostly customer complains. Both are important as we can disrupt the market either by providing new services/products either by first educating about new services/product thus giving clients more reason to keep choosing the existing company they work with.

That is even more true in today’s economy as it was never easier to add new online services, market almost for free on social media and get access to so much information.

Yet change is difficult; “why changing when we have always done this way and it is working?”; sometimes it is easier to keep pretending we are the best and the clients will follow. Multiple examples like Nokia or Kodak on one side or Uber and Airbnb on the other side show how much traditional successful companies can lose and how much new companies can disrupt and take over a market. At the opposite companies like Apple or Amazon who although “fairly young” and successful keep innovating every day to keep their clients happy.

Being fully focused on the day-to-day business operational, although perfectly normal, may lead sometimes to lose sight of the bigger picture and trends. It is always cheaper to invest with a consultant and have a larger view and understanding on what is happening than to react out to find a solution when a disruptor is already in the market.

At the end of the day, any company is totally responsible for its results and growth. They can blame the market and the competitors, they can be reactive or proactive. The way a company chooses to lead the change or to react to market changes is the main indicator of how long that company will be on the market for.

5 Ways to Fight This Bloody Cancer!

Do you sometimes feel you are losing control facing this illness?

 

CANCER!

How many of us get that feeling inside their stomach simply by hearing the word! And yet so many of us are affected by this bloody illness either directly either indirectly, having someone close to our heart: family, friends, loved one, affected by this!

The numbers are so high that it’s almost become ‘normal’. How many of us don’t know at least one person who is suffering from this disease or has someone in their family suffering from it … Feels sad but normal …

And yet when coming to routine it is difficult to accept that this is the route we are taking! Despite medical progress and good increase of life expectancy (at least 1 good thing of having so many cases occurring), there is nothing normal about this!

It gets me angry to know how widespread it has become, and how “normal” this may appear! And while I have the highest respect for medical professionals, research’s, their commitment, etc. it still gets me down the fact that there are so many ways to fight this and we still know so little about it! Not to mention that it just makes no sense to have no cure for this bloody cancer YET! There are ways to bring the number down, I am totally convinced about it, even if I don t have the miracle solution!

But, if like me you are one of those affected by this directly or indirectly here are 5 steps to fight it back:

 

  1. FORGET STATISTICS! The medical world despite huge progress is still at the infancy of what a human body is and how all these is working. There is much more unknown than known in this equation! Humanity is making huge steps forward in the scale of time (even 20 years back we knew so much little than today). Yet it’s a considerably small %. And when it comes to statistics it says as much as we already know, excluding best and worst scenario, and people not in statistics to begin with! So my first advice: stay away for those terrifying figures and discussion forums: even doctors may be wrong, and there is no one on this planet who can predict death in an accurate way!
  2. RESPECT YOUR BODY! Your body knows how to heal itself! Sometimes as difficult it may be to believe for us instructed and logical people, self-healing works! There are many ways to do this and again lots of sources on internet about it! It can go through meditation, visualising, hypnosis, just give it a real try[1]. And please by all means please do that while keeping the medical treatment on going!
  3. HAVE FAITH! The more I read about this illness the more I understand the power of our own brain! Trust your subconscious mind, it has amazing power![2] You have to believe and to stay positive. Either you are in that illness either you have a loved one affected, the best you can do for you and the others is to keep positive; worrying, stress it’s a source of illness, and has no value added to this process! Believing for real you are in good health and you are getting every day closer to your best health it’s working, as incredibly as it may seem!
  4. LIVE LIFE TO ITS FULLNESS! Enjoy life even when it’s tough, even when it feels so unfair! Just try to see the opportunity! No matter how hard may be to do so if you are in the middle of all these right now, have a look on your life, in the most honest way; when feeling so close to death, many things are coming clearer and lighter and somehow the real priorities are becoming evidence! Read about those incredible experiences of people getting off cancer, there are quite a few books and survivors writers out there! You’ll feel less alone and full of hope!
  5. BE CONNECTED TO THE UNIVERSE, the nature, the humanity! So use prayers, no matter your religion, no matter you don t have a religion, find the easiest and closest way for you to pray! Have a read of the amazing book the Healing Words[3], and when someone ask you what they can do for you or your ill loved one simply ask for a prayer! Or a positive thought sent to the universe! This is how energies are getting together! We are all so connected! If you have a chance read this great book The Celestine Prophecy[4], very beautiful and easy reading as well!

 

My heart and prayers go to all of you who have faced this bloody illness no matter where you stand today! Some of you may have lost their loved one and there are no words to reduce the pain you are feeling! I truly believe a quality life is more important than a long life! And that we have no clue what may came after! We may simply go to another level! But today, if you read this, it means you are alive, and that in itself is something big!

Miracles do happen every day! When we have our eyes and heart opened we do see miracles every single moment!

 

#pinkoctober #pink #cancer #breastcancer #survive

[1] http://www.chopra.com/ccl/7-affirmations-for-self-healing

[2] http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/68984.The_Power_of_Your_Subconscious_Mind

[3] http://www.amazon.fr/Healing-Words-Prayer-Practice-Medicine/dp/0062502522

[4] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Celestine_Prophecy

5 tips to deal with your gremlin

BERNARD BOURIGEAUD (21)

There are times in our lives when we feel down, like all the willingness we once had  has completely vanished. At times we feel completely down, incapable of moving, some of us completely paralyzed by fear; some so uncomfortable with their thought process that go into over doing, having the most busier life ever just to avoid to think; some of us just crying for hours.

All of these shall pass, we know it; and in some specific cases we forget; but in other cases it will not go away without a medical solution. I will not talk about that, I will talk about normal average healthy people who sometimes may just need to take their gremlin for a walk.

Gremlin, out of all the internal blockers this one is the most difficult to overcome. Why? Because they are so close to who we deeply are that sometimes feels the gremlin is us.

What is the so-called gremlin? We can give it different names, but  shortly it is the internal voice which is telling us we are not good enough, this is not for us, you don’t deserve this, etc. Now, we all have it,  some of us stronger than others, some of us able to hear more than others yet we all have it.

We may talk a lot about how this was developed and what is its role. Maybe to keep it short most of the time this is something we develop in  a specific difficult situation or similar repetitive experiences, which in the end made us feel unsafe, almost like in a survival mode. Sometimes it is a real surviving issue. And our gremlin is developed in those moments in order to overcome the danger and to protect ourselves. To keep it short it is easier/safer not to do something than to do it and risk to lose. That’s one of the mechanisms of gremlin.

When things go not as much as we expect them to go, most people will get affected. Feelings of betrayal, angry, sadness, lack of power, guilt, may be associated with gremlin. And then we may hear that internal voice, you are not good enough, this will never work out for you, what were you thinking, etc. The voice and the messages could be different and very specific for each of us.

While removing the gremlin or transforming it as we call the process in coaching may be extremely difficult to do on one’s own, and we always recommend to work with a certified coach on the process, identifying it is already a great step.

In terms of internal voice, sometimes it may be tough to make the difference between a gremlin and something else including the voice of intuition.

The faster way to identify it correctly is to look into what you feel. Feelings associated with fear, down, lack of power, guilt, they usually come from gremlin. The energy associated with it is extremely low, mostly we feel that there are no options, that no matter what we do, nothing will ever change. We sometimes feel we deserve not to be happy, accomplished, healthy and so on. At the opposite when intuition is talking to us we feel a sense of energy, excitement, and willingness to go further, to move mountains.

Now we may not be able to explain none of those voices, at least not at the first step and by ourselves, as it overpasses most of the time our own logic. It does not make sense why do we feel the way we feel.

Instead of challenging the WHY of what we feel, sometimes the best thing we can do is to welcome it. I know it is not the most comfortable guest. We tend to run away, to move from that thought, even to go do whatever  so we no longer feel it and we  no longer talk about it.

In time the gremlin not only could take over but it can destroy us. Whatever was protecting ourselves in a specific moment of our live, whatever was saving us, may prevent us from living now.

What if for a change we just take the gremlin for a walk. Here is what you may try out by yourself:

·      Literally go for a walk. And watch the sky, watch the trees, a specific leaf that is falling, hear the noise even the noise of car passing, or maybe you manage to hear a bird singing, breath as deep as you can, what is that you smell, focus on the steps that you take, how does it feel when you foot touches the ground. And if something prevents you from walking, maybe just open the window and do the same as the above. Notice what is happening with the gremlin when you do so…

·      Have a talk. Some people are afraid to talk to themselves out loud, yet it may just work. Saying to your gremlin I HEAR YOU.

·      This too shall pass. Allow your brain to understand the cycle, the wave are coming and going, and this too shall pass. Meditating while watching waves or fire flames may help even when the gremlin makes a huge presence. And if you are not lucky enough to be in nature, videos of those elements will have similar effects as well.

·      Appreciate what is coming to you, even in the shape of a gremlin. It is far more complicated than it seems, because in those moments all that we already have is non important, is losing its value and the gremlin has the capacity of ignoring the results. Yet we don’t. We can still see the things we do have. It does not have to be violent, just notice inside of you what you do have; even when the gratitude is not taking over, the simple list of accomplishments so far in our lives will create a sense of perspective. Write  down on a paper 5-10 personal accomplishments, and carry it with you. When the gremlin comes stronger just take it out and read it for yourself. You may be surprised by a small smile on your face. That too is who you are.

·      Who am I is not what I feel right now. That is a powerful mantra we may try to adapt. We are not what we feel, we are complex being, and a specific feeling in a specific moment, although so powerful and although so important into our life, it is not our life. It is not who we are. Simply because no one can feel only one  thing or nothing for their entire life. Life is a complex combination of feelings, emotions, thoughts, actions, and so much more. Yet on moments we may feel something that may look like this is, who am I. . You are not your gremlin.

Looking forward to hearing how this works for you. And providing you want to know more about the topic please put your questions/comments/challenges into the comments so I can bring more perspective. This is not a 5 minute read topic, yet it may sometimes take 5 minutes to start doing something about it.