I lost my job… and it was a good thing!

When you saw the tittle you probably thought “she might be drunk”. I am not actually. So, let me explain…

Last week I have been fired because of the economic disaster of Covid. The US have been hit really bad, my old self would have started to imagine a catastrophe scenario of me losing my apartment, not knowing how to eat and getting in debt just to stay alive.

But something strange happened when I received the news at 7pm. I went to walk on the beach and try to calm down…and I didn’t feel upset or stressed at all. As I kept walking, I was waiting for the tears and they never came. Do you know why?

Because I knew deep inside of me that being fired was the best thing that could have happened to me at that time.

If something happens, it is for a reason. Even if it doesn’t seem right in the moment, it’s fair and it happens to us for the best. You can take the event as a negative thing, sit, cry and play the victim. Or you can use it as a tool to switch the situation into your favor. And that is what I did.

I realized it wasn’t bad news because that job wasn’t my dream job. The conditions, the management and the vision of the company weren’t aligned with what I wanted to do. This position was a dead end for my dreams.

I understood that me getting fired was life giving me an opportunity to sit down with myself and think. Think about what I wanted to do for myself. How can I bring back passion to my life? How to bring a new sense of purpose to my career? How can I use my skills to be efficient, bring value to a brand and feel good? What kind of customers, companies or brands do I want to work with or for?

For months, I was just so on my daily routine that I forgot what I deeply wanted. I had become numb and just acted as a robot, repeating the same gestures and tasks every day. Didn’t even realized it was killing my joy of living little by little.

That night, I didn’t worry at all. I just enjoyed the sunset at the beach and talked with a friend. When I came home, I had dinner with my man and cuddled with my dog.

The next day I thought “OK, let’s just do some calls and send e-mails to find a little income to pay the bills while I am reconnecting to what I want”.

2 days later, I had found another job by the purest form of coincidence and it was fulfilling every aspect I had been looking for:

  • A deep sense of purpose and usefulness on my tasks
  • Working under the supervision of a badass boss bitch whom personal and professional skills are going to take me to the next level
  • Work conditions fitting my goals: a mix of office and home work
  • Perspective of evolution short and long term for my career with great contacts in different fields

There is no perfect job or leader. There is no perfect situation that will give you the fantasy that you are imaging in your head. Everything is always moving in life.

But the amazing lesson I learned from this event is that we really have the choice to turn everything into something good. Something that seems tragic can actually be positive for you. Losing a job, having a health issue, a break up, etc ….

If you are facing a hard situation and you feel like you are drowning, take a second to focus on the positive things you are wining. Because there is good in everything. Maybe it is the occasion to reconnect with your inner child, pursue your passion and be creative. Maybe it is time to take that trip, reconnect with this old friend or family member.

It happened to me, it can take only a couple of hours or days to completely switch a situation to your advantage.

I am stressed because I am a perfectionist and I want to be successful on that new challenge. I want to make the best out of this new opportunity, prove my skills and learn new things. But I understand also I have to enjoy every single aspect of the new, the unknow, saying goodbye to the past and looking at the bright side.

It could be you too. 

Staying calm inside

We are living a very challenging time. The majority of us had the luck to say until today “I never lived a war, a national trauma or a state of emergency”.

Now we are in this pandemic situation together. No one is safe and everybody is impacted on all levels.

Maybe you lost people already, your job is at risk, your health, your financial situation. This crisis we are living is a serious threat to our future and our loved ones. But it is also an opportunity to learn and look forward to the future, on an individual and collective point of view.

In what kind of world do we want to live, how, what to improve and what to live behind ? I think it’s still too early to have an answer to these questions. We have to go deep into our self reflection, our leaders have to make decisions to use all this time we have for good.

But right now we have to manage our daily lifes, trying to hold up everything together. Being stucked at home with very limited liberty of movement is not only a hit to our bodies but our minds. We have all seen on social media how people record themselves going nuts only after a couple of days inside. What is happening ? It is hard to ground, calm down, take time to do something useful … or do nothing.

That’s the challenge. We are so damn busy all the time, running from one task to another that now we feel scared contemplating the amount of time we have for ourselves. It is scary, we feel lost. You have all day to think about your relationships, your habits, your money, your past, your family, what do you want to manifest, etc. News are scarier every day, making the next week almost unbareable to wait for.

What can we do ? For the world, not much but stay inside and wait slowly. But each one of us has the choice and the responsability to not let fear take us and do our best to remain calm. Every day is not going to be peacefull. Especially if you live in a small place with your partner and your kids. We have the chance to meditate, put a little music on, dance, read, draw, write or cook to take our minds off the anxiety around us. For families it’s a beautiful occasion to connect, get closer and create new memories together.

It’s the moment to be productive for you and your family but it’s not either a competition to “who is going to be out with 10 lbs less or create a new business plan”. Don’t be hard on yourself, if today you did nothing but wearing pyjamas watching Netflix. Today was slow, tomorrow will be different. Take this deal day by day and be gentle with yourself. We live an unprecedent crises that NOBODY KNOWS HOW TO HANDLE.

Life is giving us an opportunity not to be lock down for weeks, but to take care of ourselves in a new way for weeks. Let’s get out of this with more love for ourselves, new habits of self-care and new goals.

The performance race

Lately I have been feeling really exhausted and unmotivated about…pretty much everything.

I have this type of personality that when I face a difficulty I tend to think that I have failed at everything in all aspects of my life.

I have always had a big tendency to feel the need to control all my life and I have no patience, or very little.

So when I plan on achieving a goal, I get frustrated if it doesn’t happen in the timeframe that I set for myself.

The result ? Mental and physical exhaustion.

I am so hard on myself and have expectations that are so high that I have succeed to produce the total opposite effect of what I wanted to do : not achieve my goal.

In practical terms what does it mean ? I have lost appetite and want to eat more crap; my sleep is a disaster (I wake up several times at night); I have very low energy, my training has lost its quality and intensity; I don’t read/watch videos/ listen to podcast that much…

Worst aspect of all, I became a huge pain in the ass for all the people surrounding me, especially my partner (sweetie if you read this I am sorry, I am working on it).

I am learning the hard way that life is not a competition. Despite the society we live in and the subconscious rules that are forced upon us. So it’s time I stop banging my head on the wall I built with unrealistic factors.

I don’t have to be productive EVERY single day, I can’t be on the top of the world in all aspects of my life all the time.

I am trying hard to get better at expressing myself, live my life with passion and increase the quality of my relationships. But that’s the work of a life.

We live in a world of performance and I am feeling this way harder since I live in the US.

But it doesn’t have to be my case. I choose the way I react to everything and how I make my life.

Since I am in Miami I see a lot of people chasing money and working several jobs at the same time for multiple reasons. They aren’t millionaires and they aren’t more happy with their life.

I think life is trying to teach me a lesson: slow down, enjoy and make things happen in your own terms.

I need to get back passion in my life and reduce the pressure I am putting in myself. From today I am going to stop trying to full my days. Being busy from 7am to 11pm with 100 tasks doesn’t make me a better human being. Sleep more, have better food and especially, take more meaningful things to my life, personally and professionally.

I am setting myself 2 or 3 goals per month, write them down on my phone and putting them on the fridge. Achievable goals that aren’t going to stress me more.

I have 3 big goals for a year from now, we will see how it goes. I will probably have to adjust along the way.

My point today: don’t let the world AND yourself eat your personality and joie de vivre.

Self Love Challenge

A couple of weeks ago I did an amazing challenge I want to talk to you about.  

I am a believer on personal development and I have worked on it the last few years. We don’t receive personal and relationships education at school. And the knowledge we get from our parents and our social circles isn’t always appropriate.

I have learned that we can carry our parents’ burdens, conflicts and bad habits and behaviors.

In order to clean our state of minds and general well-being, it takes a lot of internal work.  And it’s in addition to all the work we already have to do on a daily basis. Sometimes it just feels as another form of pressure to me: on top of my day, I have to meditate, do yoga, breathing exercises, practice mindfulness…

This self-love challenge that I did on the initiative of my friend reminded me that taking care of myself in different ways is not another duty on my to-do list. It’s a small gesture from me to me to feel better on a daily basis. Because yes, you have to be a bit selfish to take care of yourself so you can take care of those around you.

I don’t want to spoil you the pleasure of doing this challenge, so I will just give you a few hints of what we did.

Every day we had to do a thing that was meant to reconnect with our body, our mind and our pleasure. It goes from taking a bath, to cook for yourself some fresh meal to make a list of the crazy activities you want to do in the next few months.

Some days were pretty easy, some others the challenge really made you face aspects of your life that can make you really uncomfortable. But it’s also part of the process: a little shake to remind yourself to not stay caught up in your comfort zone.

It’s also a good occasion to realize that if you have been forgiving a little bit about daily rituals that are good to you, it’s time to make them part of your routine again.

The best part of it was that we did it with a all group of females on Facebook. Every day we have been sharing our thoughts and reactions to the challenges. It has been a good way to meet new people, create a new tribe you feel connected to and don’t feel alone.

This is the kind of moment when you realize that age, nationality and culture matter but they don’t do everything: we have the same fears and joys in our hearts.

I do recommend you to contact my dear friend Capucine, she is a wellness coach. In addition to the challenge she can also help you work on yourself on many different levels:

Facebook Capucine Thustrup

Instagram @thesparklingnipples

Away abroad

Since I have been traveling and living abroad for a couple of years now, I get asked quiet often this question “don’t you miss being with your family”.

I understand why people ask it and I find hard to answer it because it’s a mix of yes and no.

I don’t want to look like a monster but to be honest, I don’t have a family with easy and positive relationships (I know it’s the case for a lot of us) so going away has been a relief for me.

It can sound weird or cruel. I have friends that can’t live more than 5 miles away from their parents or not talk to their mom on the phone every day.
It didn’t happen for me and my brother and sister.

After my parents split the atmosphere at home became really heavy, it never became light and fresh again, we still have old tensions in the air that are 10 years old. My parents and us we have different characters and ways to communicate. It seems that when we spend too much time together, we just hurt each other.

Yes, we should have family therapy but that’s another conversation.  

So no, it doesn’t really hurt me to be that far away. Yes, I miss my family and my close friends. But it never came to the point where I felt “I need to come home to be with them”. Being in my hometown would be the death of my soul, there is nothing there for me to grow and feel fulfilled.

The ones that are close to my heart know it and they really saw me get better being away.

Thanks to technology we can still be in touch on a daily basis anyway. Facebook, Whatsapp, Instagram, emails.. you name it, there are several ways to reach out and we are having fun with it. Even my grandparents learned how to use their smartphone to facetime with me (even if I see more they hair or their nose than their faces but still).

I miss big events like weddings of friends or new babies but in a way, I am also paying more attention.

Because I am far, I am trying to take care of them, I send them pictures, videos, voicenotes and I am working harder to maintain our connection. I can’t do it with everybody because it would be very time consuming so, time has made me do some selection. But I think I kept the best relationships on track and I am spending several hours every week to reach out to every person that I care.

It can sound selfish but let’s be honest, a day only has 24 hours, you work, you eat, you sleep, maybe work out and read a little, you can’t maintain deep relationships with 100 persons, especially if there are living on another time zone.

The hardest part is to make others understand my point of view. Even good friends sometimes tell me “I don’t get why you stay there, it’s hard, expensive, food is not good, you are far from us, what’s the point”. But it can be difficult to have others understand you no matter in you live in your town or in another country.

We are all unique, what works for me doesn’t for others and vice versa. It’s valid for any aspect of your life.

To conclude, yes, I miss moments with my families and friends, not being in environment with them but it’s also making me a better person so I think it’s worth it. And they think the same.

How sport can help your mental health

When I used to be anorexic, sport/working out/training wasn’t fun or relieving at all. It was just a tool to punish myself after eating anything (even if it was just a bowl of soup).

That’s why I wanted to train alone, when you don’t work out for pleasure everybody can see it and I prefered to hide it.

I was just feeling literally like a giant stick of shit. The mental toll of this illness is very hard. I hated my body that’s a fact, but most importantly I was extremely weak. I couldn’t do any kind of exercise for a long period of time without feeling sick (nausea, dizziness, pain in the joints).

So when I saw my doctor the first step was really just to get back strength, muscles and flexibility and eat properly step by step. Further along I went back to exercise not because I needed too but because it was fun, I was enjoying myself, was pushing my limits and felt part of a group.

I created lovely memories at the gym with the family I have there and some people are still part of my life even being away from Europe.

It took me almost two years of working with my therapist and different coaches to train for pleasure again. I am still working on this today and always try to have fun when I do it.

Some days I need to go very hard and strong at the gym and lift heavy weights.

Some days I need to just walk on the beach or stretch at home watching a serie on Netflix.

Sport has been a very useful tool for healing because it gave me a way to expulse everything.

When I workout I only focus on my physical sensations, my breath, my moves. I put myself in a bubble to just live a moment of deep connexion with my body. I get only into my physical sensations and push it until I feel relieved.

Why does it help with mental illness of any kind ? Because you regain power with yourself along the process. You feel confidence and self esteem again, strength again. You actually realize the extent of your physical power and you feel limitless

The aesthetic of your physique changing is just the cherry on the top.

Plus when you exercise, your body releases hormones of happiness, which is why you actually feel good for real.  

So no matter what kind of mental illness you are experiencing, try do find a activity that you like and do it a couple of times per week, at your rhythm and find the joy in it.

The rest will come 😉

The power of love

I can’t believe it’s been 4 years already that I am working in personal development.

Times flies by, I can’t believe sometimes so far, I have come from. I have learned many lessons, most of them the hard way (cause that’s always the best way you learn).

Aaaaand it’s also a good lesson to realize that I still have a lot to learn. The work with yourself never ends. When you think you had solved an issue, another one pop.

Today I just want to talk about the hard lesson I have been learning since I am in Miami.

The opposition between love and fear.

These two elements are in our lives every day, on us and others. We can’t live without them, but we can choose which one we want to stick with.

Fear is something that can be good for us, it can protect us from making choices that will hurt us. But we need to use just a tiny necessary piece of it otherwise it drives us.

We get scared to do small things, we convince ourselves we can’t do this or that, we don’t do, nothings happen, the fear grows and grows, and it infect everything like a poison.

You are scared to leave a job, a relationship, speak up for yourself, do things alone, make that tattoo, make this trip, take this risk…

It reminds me about the story of the white and black wolves we have inside of us. You choose to feed one of them and then face the consequence.

Fear it’s the same: the more you feed it the more it expands, and you can feel paralyzed to do anything. Not a nice way to live.

From what I have learned from my experiences and my coaching session with Daniele (http://www.enrichissezvotrevie.com/) is that there is no space in our hearts for both. Love can’t exist if there is fear and vice & versa.

You want love in your life? You have to think love on every of your actions so it will spread like a magical energy. It’s the only thing that should guide any of our act and thought.

We all want to have a life in which we will feel happy, safe, useful, passionate and be remembered.

I don’t remember who said that but it’s true: people can forget your name, how they met you, what you did or said but they will never forgive how you made them feel.

The effect that you have on others is the thing that has most value in this world.

All what you will leave behind you when you die is what was in your heart.

I know I want to love and be loved, I want to energize people, motivate them to take risks, show them what’s possible, inspire and lead. The effects of love around us are tangible and concrete, you can see love every day in very small details, but it is there.

You have the right to be who you want, live your life the way you want and ask the universe (or your god) what you want. But to do so, live in peace and love you need to quit fear along the way.

Let’s more love guide ourselves, our world can be pretty amazing and better if we all put some effort into it. Let’s shine and love.

 

The meditation challenge

The first I heard the term meditation it was years ago, when I was still studying at the unversity. I was talking with friends that were trying yoga classes and saying that the meditation at the end wasn’t relaxing at all. They made a very funny description of it, not appealing at all, and I kept on living my life without getting interested in this topic for a long time.
But after my Master’s degree when I had to go home and get treatment for anorexia, the word started to pop again.
Therapy is good, drugs are good for a while. But there is a time in my life I wanted to be on my own, drug free and without a therapy session every month. I started reading articles about the benefits of yoga and meditation to calm the spirit and heal traumas.

Yoga is a phylosohy, a all way of living. Most of the time I used the postures to stretch my body and some of the breathing exercises to calm me down.

Last year due to a lot of personal stress I tried meditation to calm my nerves. And what’s ironical is that it didn’t felt calming at all at the beginning. It was my fault because I completely misunderstood the right way to do it. I was trying to not think anything at all. But it’s impossible, you can’t have your mind thoughts-free. Never.
But the point of meditation is not trying to control your thoughts, how they come and go. Is just to focus on your breath. Your breathe in, breath out, if there is a thought coming you just “observ” it, let it go, focus again your breath and you keep going as long as you need.

It became a very important ritual in my daily life. I started to do it at night before going to bed to calm me and sleep better. And now I am also doing it in the morning to prepare me for the day. When I have the chance, I also take a couple of minutes at lunch to take a break from all what is going on on my life.

It helps me take out the stress that I accumulate in my mind and my body, helps me breath better, relax all the muscles of my body and put things in perspective.

We get so caught up in our daily problems that we forget our purpose in life, how to be happy with ourselves every day and make our loved one happy. Meditation helps me a better person because it gaves me a bubble where I can relax, focus on my peace and self confidence. I feel so much better after that, I can’t be a bitch to others because I feel in a good place.

For those of you that want to give it a try, I would recommend you to do what I did: go on Youtube and look for videos. There are thousand of videos, short and long, to help you medidate and work on your anxiety, attract abundance, love and good energy in your life. When you start to practive, you feel the benefits quickly and it’s addictive in a good way.
Let me know if you tried and how you liked it !