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Posts Tagged ‘unstuck’

Recipe for change

Thursday, September 9th, 2010


Image: billionstrang


Tuesday, September 7th, 2010


I remember back then when cars refused to start on cold winter days. The motor was too cold to even give you one sound of hope.

However, there was a trick. Cars were equipped with a manual choke – a pull-out knob. When used correctly it helped the car get its engine going.

What, if you would have something like that up your sleeves? Every time you find yourself stuck in a habit, in a situation or in procrastination. You just use your tools and jump-start yourself out of it.

Think about the times when you don’t want to get out of the house for a walk, don’t feel like socialising or don’t seem to be able to act differently. What do you do to get yourself going?

Explore this, so that you can do what works for you in times when you need it.

You might also want to read:
Waiting for…
Dream, Dare, Do

Image: Some rights reserved by aldenjewell

An abundance of choice

Tuesday, August 31st, 2010


On my first trip to the US, more than 20 years ago, I was in a coffee shop to order a cappuccino. There was a queue and finally it was my turn.

Suddenly 100’s of questions were fired at me with the expectation that I knew the answers. Who would have thought that a simple cappuccino could come in so many different variations! I stood there, stunned, my brain in overload. The only thing I could do was remove myself from this situation.

For the first time in my life, I felt ill equipped to order a cup of coffee. I lived in Vienna back then and drinking coffee was a daily pleasure.

I had already decided. Cappuccino it was. Not a long black. Even so, this choice seemed only to be the start for more decisions to be made. I had to decide on every ingredient that would go into it.

So I sat down on a table, took a deep breath and studied all the options on the display. Only after practicing my answers, did I get back in the queue to get coffee. With success! But the stress involved was huge.

Choice is a complex matter. We want to have choice. But are there moments when we are overwhelmed by it? What do you do, when you find yourself stuck because you can’t make a decision? What does it depend upon. Is it something we need to learn to cope with, to manage?

Sheena Iyengar, studies “The art of choosing” and gives a fascinating talk about the power and effect of choice.

Image: DeaPeaJay

A welcome mat for your fears

Friday, August 27th, 2010


It’s time to put the welcome mat out for your fears.

Can you think of a situation where you stopped doing what was making you afraid? The fear probably vanished. Though I am also quite confident that this fear came back when you where faced with the same or a similar situation.

There are so many reasons for us to be afraid of doing something different, new or unknown.

The fear of…
… being rejected, not being loved, being abandoned, failing, not being liked, not belonging, becoming anxious, slipping back into the darkness, saying something wrong, hurting someone, not doing enough, doing too much, not being good enough, the future…

Fear is just as part of us as is joy. How come you push it away and try to deny its existence. Still. Quietly you adjust behaviour and adapt aspects of your life to accommodate this fear.

What would it take to get to know what you don’t want to see. Don’t want to have in your life. I know it is difficult.

I also know, the less you spend time pushing fear out of your life the more you can focus on actually doing what it prevented you from all that time. Give it some space to explain itself. You will see fear will ask less and less attention from you.

You might also want to read:
Fairy tales, monsters and life
Conversations with my pink elephant
Ride that bike

Image: Claudio Matsuoka

Clutter and mind

Tuesday, August 24th, 2010


A strong autumn wind found its way into the office, ecstatic about all the papers, post-it notes, pens and nicknacks on the desk. Spinning them around, leaving nothing unturned. Until it had played enough and dropped everything.

This is how my office desk looked like, every day. Piles of paper, important documents, funny things, notes, pens, you name it. When I would start my working day in the morning and looked at my desk, I felt overwhelmed. My breath became heavier, my shoulders carried an invisible weight.

Nothing seemed to stand out.

Everything was important.

Where to start.

Kadira at Unfolding Creativity has written a great post about developing a working habit that supports you. Originally written for artists, it can just as easily be adapted to any kind of work you do. One of the things Kadira is emphasizing is that clearing your work space helps you clear your mind and therefore helps you focus on your art.

Filling your desk with clutter is a habit. A habit you might want to examine about its usefulness and its role. Many people tell me that they can’t live without clutter because this is who they are. They need it, they say. And I understand. It took me a while to create a new habit of keeping my desk clear of unnecessary clutter.

Our brain has the tendency to focus on what is right in front of us. Now that I keep my desk empty, I find it easier to decide what is important, where to start and to keep focused. The weight on my shoulders has lifted.

When was the last time you looked at your working habits. Review them from time to time, to see whether they support you or undermine your efforts.

You might also want to read:
How to reduce distractions and stay focused
Create space for clarityA fresh sheet of paper

Images: Some rights reserved by neofob
Some rights reserved by aloshbennett
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