Tag Archives: happiness

Favourite things

We all have our passions and our favourite things in life.

I think I have always made it clear with all those who know me, that nature and medieval / gothic buildings are close to my heart; my inspiration. It kind of ties in with why I enjoy traveling so much, and why it is one of the few things in life which relaxes me and make feel at ease.

Fact: at least two thirds of my photos on social media cover these topics,  so don’t act surprise on what you are about to read!

When I bought my 300 year old house,one of the things I fell in love with is the courtyard. Although not huge in size, it is very homey and it had one gorgeous tree which flowers so many times a year. It felt like it was my own private garden. I was so happy to have found such a serene and beautiful place.

In the past 3 years, I have kept the yard as green as I could, considering that I work full-time and my gardening knowledge is not the best around. I have maintained and kept alive all the plants which came with the house and added a few new ones too!

Too many times, I have had tea outside, admiring the calm and peace of my safe place. At times, even birds came by.  My little peace of heaven!

bougainvilleaBut this week, the unthinkable has happened. My beautiful bougainvillea tree was snapped from the bottom of its trunk due to the winter winds. And now, I feel like I have lost a part of me. I must say, it has been a shitty start to the new year. The courtyard feels so empty now, and what’s worse is that I have spent three days chopping down this gorgeous healthy, full grown tree. It’s painful that I have to do this; putting it into boxes for the bin-man to take away in the morning.

And for those who think I am being dramatic, imagine that your favourite thing in the world is broken and is irreplaceable. (you will not find the exact replica) How would you feel then?

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Take the leap

I have probably wrote about this topic about a gazillion times, but hey ho… I am trying to understand myself better… and at the same time I am wondering if it is just me who’s like this, or whether it is something which is more common than I realise.

I am the kind of person, who puts others before her; be it their needs, their happiness… you name it. I try to always be there, to listen, to help, to support, to give others my two cents. To help them on their way to goodness, fulfillment… joy to the world they say!

And in return, I neglect myself. I put myself through shit.. through disappointment, through pain… just in the name of seeing others doing better. No, I don’t regret being there for friends, I love putting a smile on people’s  faces. But what about me?

Yes, what about me?

Okay, I don’t want to sound selfish… but this is definitely not right. I feel stressed, worn out… at times beyond repair.

My guess is, I am the problem.

I need to learn how to let go…. let go of people and things which are bad for me, who don’t deserve half the time and attention I give them. I need to stop people from abusing my generosity. I need to learn to be okay with just being me, and in my own company and shoes.

I should stop hiding behind other people’s problems and dive into fixing what is wrong with my life and myself. I have been here before, I take on more than I can keep up with, just so I don’t have to think about what needs to get done in my life; to stop focusing on what I am scared to face… to stop working on my dreams, just because I am scared to fail… yet again.

I know that, everything I want is on the other side of fear.

So, why can’t I take the leap?

I know what I want, so why do I do this to myself? Why do I punish myself so much?

More on this topic, here.

 

Christmassy?

7 years ago, back when I used to write a lot of poems, I wrote the below. It still makes a lot of sense to me… How do you feel about this time of the year?

Winter weather Nov 30thChristmas is near –
Some hold it dear
Others regret it
They can’t bare it.

Celebrations
are on their way,
Finances
go down the drain.

Everyone spending
Everyone drinking
either out of pleasure
or depression.

Christmas spirit
I can’t feel it,
Where did it go?
Not there anymore.

All it is to me
Is holidays and booze
I should let it be,
How about you?

2009.12.23

Car-Rant

Are you familiar with those days when you are extremely happy, like so happy, you could die? I have had a good number of those in a row. So much so that they freak me out. I believe that for every action there’s an opposite and equal reaction… Meaning, that for every day I am excessively happy, I have a pile of shit waiting for me around the corner.

Boy was I right.

It all started with a slow puncture. Then, my car key decided to stop working on the driver’s side (it still works on passenger’s door, so I have been able to make due until I figure out where I need to take my car to fix this). Yesterday I woke up feeling poorly, and my allergies so bad that I could barely see from one of my eyes, and it would not stop watering! It also was a rainy day; so much so that I do not recall hearing it stop at all during the day. This morning, since I am being ultra-paranoid about everything, I decided to go check on my car. Slow puncture again, and water inside my car. Lovely. As if that is not enough, I learned that the slow puncture is not due to the tyre’s fault but due to the car’s rim. So, 2 days – 3 mishaps.

If this was not my real-life story, I would laugh so much – I mean, this could turn out to be quite the comedy plot.

Dear God, I hope this is enough for now. I have to figure out how to sort all these things out, on top of being in work 9 hours a day. What makes it worse is that I have no clue on how to even begin! I guess, it would have made things easier if I had a man in my life…. Although the feminist in me wants me to chill and take it one step at a time… at least when it happens again (hopefully not), I’ll know what to do. >_>

PS. Why was I so eager to grow up?

What Does The Science Say About Staying Happy At Work?

A lack of happiness in the workplace is a big issue. So it won’t come as any surprise that scientists are trying to figure out what makes workers see the brighter side of life. Unhappy employees lead to high rates of absenteeism and high turnover and it all damages business’s bottom lines.

So how does one create a happy workplace? It all comes down to positive psychology and positive emotions. It’s the reverse to how we usually think about our mental wellbeing. We see mental health as all the things that can go wrong with our minds. But positive psychology is different, It asks what we can do to actively make ourselves happy.

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The findings from this field are relevant and can be applied to the workplace. Let’s take a look at some of the field’s most pertinent conclusions.

Positive Emotions Are Contagious

In one study researchers wanted to find out if positive emotions were contagious. They set up a group situation and planted an actor in its midst. The actor was trained by the researchers to exude positivity in the group setting. The researchers found that the person acting positively transmitted their positivity to others. The group experienced less conflict, more cooperation and better performance in doing tasks.

It showed that being around positive people really does have an impact on workplace productivity and wellbeing. Being around happy people rubs off on the rest of us misery guts.

Small Actions Have A Big Impact On Personal Happiness

You might think that in order to achieve happiness, something incredible has to happen – like winning the lottery. But the evidence suggests that people react far more positively to the smaller things. This is great news for employers, as it means that they don’t have to spend vast sums of money trying to make their workers happier.

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Take bereavement for example. As the bereavement leave guide by Peninsula Group explains, employers don’t have a duty to provide workers with time off right now. But employers who allow compassionate leave can help to improve the wellbeing of their employees enormously. Small gestures like this are surprisingly effective. So too as things like making lists of all the good things a worker did or writing a letter saying how much a worker helped you.

The Unexpected Makes Us Happy

w3Flickr

When good things happen to us that we didn’t predict, it makes us a lot happier. The researchers found that people’s happiness centres lit up more on MRI scans when positive stimuli were unexpected.

At work, managers often create very predictable happiness programmes for their employees. They organise summer and Christmas parties. They give out bonuses. And they organise team events. But when it comes to happiness, this might not be the best strategy. It might be better, in fact, to make your happiness activities more random and to surprise your employees.

Random acts of kindness around the workplace seems to be the way to go. You could surprise a high-performing employee with a reward. Or you could give workers a surprise trip out of the office to a local theme park. The possibilities are endless.

Style Your Fridge for a Healthy, Organized Space

When you travel a lot, having a beautiful home to return to is more important than ever. And if you love to maintain a healthy diet, your kitchen is one of the areas of your home that matters most. Not everyone gives a lot of thought to what their refrigerator looks like. They consider what’s in it but perhaps aren’t as concerned with style. However, there’s something satisfying about looking into a perfectly organized fridge. Paying attention to the contents of your fridge could help you eat more healthily, even when you’ve just got back from your travels. Sort out your refrigerator with these design tips.

fridge.PNGSourced from Kathleen Franklin

Choose the Right Fridge

If you want to style your fridge, choosing the right one is the first step. They come in all shapes and sizes, and you might not be satisfied with your current one. Perhaps it isn’t big enough, or you feel like it’s not modern enough. You might want to choose one with an ice maker, or even one with smart technology installed. Some newer fridges can remind you when you need to buy things or if something is about to go off. You should take a good look at the layout of the fridge to make sure there’s enough space.

Use Stylish Drinks Containers

Many people might have cartons or plastic bottles full of drinks in their fridge. However, if you want it to look more organized, you might consider other containers. You could keep your drinks fresher and, of course, make your own drinks too. For example, you can use sleek glass containers to hold your fresh juice. You could also add a WillowAndEverett Coffee Maker to your fridge so that you always have fresh coffee. It uses the cold brew method which allows you to make both iced and hot coffee. The coffee maker looks great in your fridge door, as well as on your table.

outside.PNGSourced from Eloise L

Separate Containers for Organization

We can have a tendency to simple put our food in our fridges without much thought. This can end up with a messy and disorganized space. It might also mean that you forget about some of your food and it goes to waste. Make your fridge smarter by using different containers for your food. Put your butter in a covered dish or your eggs in a smart tray. You can use a range of containers that look stylish and help to keep your food fresh. Make use of jars, paper and string, or cheesecloth bags.

Group Your Foods

Your fridge will be easier to navigate if you group foods together. Keep your vegetables in the crisper draw (and not beer) and group your dairy products together. You could also organize things by the date on them. This will help you keep track of when you need to use them. Everything will look neater and be easily accessible if you arrange things with some thought.

A stylish and organized fridge can help you eat more healthily. It will look good and be a welcome sight when you come home.

A Step Back

There are those people in your life, who bring out the best in you.
There are others, who just make you mad and question life itself.

Some of the two kinds, inspire me in the best ways.

Finally, I have found my mojo*.
Finally, I can put onto paper what I have held in for so long…

This week, has made me look back, and wonder… When was the last time I was really happy? When was the last time, I felt wanted, needed? When was the last time someone has made me feel important?

The answer is, I can’t remember.

It is true, that when  we are happy, and we are feeling all the positive vibes and the love around us, we fail to take note of it. We take it for granted, just because it is there; we have, we own it.

Some people come into your life, and immediately fit in. It feels like they have been there all along. But what you don’t realise is, that suddenly your life has more purpose. Like, a certain part of you which you forgot all about (willingly or unwillingly) is whole again. You wonder, how you have let yourself rot like this, and accept what is being thrown at you with arms wide open. Why are we patient and forgiving of undeserving people? chivalryWhy do we make ourselves believe that everything is okay when it is not?

What has happened to romance? On being blunt, and saying all that you feel inside? On making memories, and holding on to them for dear life? How can we be okay with the fact that chivalry no longer exists? I for one, would love to be swept off my feet.

*mojo: a power that may seem magical and that allows someone to be very effective, successful, etc.

Connections

When it comes to a relationship; be it a romantic relationship, friendship, family etc, I think that the most important thing is consistency.

In the sense, that I expect a sense of honesty and loyalty. A sense of openness and support, without the need of asking them for it. Because, if these people do not know you, if these people cannot figure you out, who will?

If you don’t receive some kind of general interest from them regarding your life and your well being, I think it is worrying. Not caring about one another, is the first step in disbanding whatever relationship there is amongst the two of you.

I am no counselor, but I think that I have enough experience to determine whether a boat is sinking or not. And if I point this out to you, don’t get insulted; I do this because I belief you are too important for me to lose you, and I am worried that if we keep doing what we are doing the consequences are not in our favour.

I am a very selective person, so if you are part of my life, a part of my inner circle; please  know you are irreplaceable, and I will do my utmost to see you happy.

I am going through changes…

Five more days, until I say goodbye to Betsson.
Yes, you heard things right.
I am leaving Betsson Group. 

After almost 4 years, I have decided to move on to a new challenge, to a job which will hopefully take me where I want to be. For years, I’ve expressed my unheard wishes, so I decided to take my future in my own hands, sort it out myself.

With a grunt, I shall leave behind, the company I have worked for the longest, and some of the best colleagues I ever had the pleasure to work with. Truth be told, all my closest work mates bar one, have moved on to another job role before me, so I am not too displeased with my current situation. Besides, friends should find a way to communicate and to meet up, so let’s see the outcome of this little experiment 🙂

So what will happen of me, and of SteffiSays?

I will be taking a much needed 4 weeks off, out of which, I will spend 1 week in North Wales and 2 weeks travelling (Roadtripping, baby!). Right after, I will do some house maintenance, and will start working in my new job in the fourth week of September. SteffiSays will stay, there’s no way I will abandon my personal blog which has served me so well in the past 2 years!

Excited?
Hell yes! 

Although for the time being I will not say much about my new job, I am ecstatic for this opportunity, and for a company to believe in me and see my potential. I believe that in my new role I will be able to make a lot of changes and positive differences to drive the company in the right direction and to the next level. So, CHEERS!

goodbye-coworker.jpg

I’ll be there for you…

It seems that in the past few years, several people who I used to know or I was at school with, have decided to give up. They have realised that it is time, they’d let their struggles win, and simply let go of their physical life.

The news I read today, has devastated me.

It just makes me realise how fragile we are… How people can appear like they are having the time of their life from the outside, yet they feel dead inside; empty.
I can speak from experience when I say, that some of us can hide their feelings very well from the society we live in, and only break down when alone, in a safe place. I guess, it is difficult to admit that we are weak, in the fear of being ridiculed or shut down, when we show our true feelings. Experiencing neglect and being misunderstood is definitely much worse than feeling sad and insecure in your own head.

But this is our problem. If we don’t admit defeat, if we don’t ask for help… how do we get better? How can we win a fight we are not even trying to battle?

Moreover, if it is not you, but a friend of yours, how would you manage to detect their depression, insecurities and concerns? How can you help them, without making them admit they are suffering and going downhill?

I keep wondering, if someone knew what was going on, maybe the death could have been prevented? If someone cared enough, offered a cushion or a shoulder, tried to understand… Maybe the world could lose less people to suicide.