I had an amazing weekend even though it was also a bit sad because my parents left. I just worked an hour on an email to all the parents in my son’s class because I am actually the “Elternvorstand”, meaning I am the liaison between parents and teachers/school. Actually, I like it so far. It is fun and it is great to be involved. I love to write so, these parents will be bombarded with info, ha! And so will you. What is on my mind lately? Find out.
- Stop complaining. I don’t waste energy moaning about the things that get me down. It will only make me feel worse and spread negative feelings. A quick rant to get something out of my system is fine but I ditch the negative remarks and put my energy into fixing the situation instead. I like spreading positive vibes and good humor. No toxic aura.
- I cannot control what life throws at me, but I can control how I react to those challenges. And how I speak about them, too. If I always describe situations in negative terms, I will effectively make up my mind that things will end badly. I rather rephrase the way I refer to things such as I call a tricky situation “a challenge” rather than a “disaster”, and I develop a brighter attitude to life and find that positive results are a much more likely outcome.
- Forgive: Anger and blame are unpleasant emotions to carry around. I think objectively about an incident that upset me: I try to see it form the other person’s point of view. It is likely that they won’t have meant to hurt me, perhaps thoughtlessness or a lack of courage caused the problem? Now I think about my own part in the situation. Have I been playing the victim? Or dwelling on things and creating more stress?
- I make friends with failure. Usually, what people regret in life is not pursuing their dreams. What often stops them from just doing X, Y, or Z? It is the fear of failure. From a very young age, they teach us that failure is a bad thing, but guess what: Failure is one of the most valuable experiences I have ever had. For example, a divorce highlights exactly what I need to change in the future when it comes to relationships.
- I don’t dwell on the past. All the things I should or could have done differently and worrying about it means I am living in the past. It also means I let these experiences control the present and my future. I just make peace with it all.
- I treat myself the way I would treat a loved one. Kindly, not harshly. I explain to myself that I have done the best I could in the circumstances given and forgive myself for any mistake.
- On Perfection: “Have no fear of perfection – You will never reach it” – Salvador Dalí. Perfection does not exist. All the images on social media of other people’s seemingly perfect bodies, homes, careers are not realistic images. No need to achieve perfection to be happy.
- Get organized. We are back to the “new normal” in Vienna and as a single parent, it is important to be as organized as possible. For now, I have our school-morning-routine down. Less stress, and more time to relax and to enjoy every single day. I cut down on tidying time by putting things away as I use them. I plan meals ahead so I don’t waste time on constant trips to the supermarket.
- Focus. I don’t multitask even though I am a woman and should be a master at this. I rather focus all my attention on one task and get that finished before moving on to the next thing on my list.
- Prioritize. I figure out what my top four or five priorities are. Things I am passionate about, hobbies, things that really make my heart sing. I know I have to go to work but I also know that afterward, I can play.
- Less indoors. I love my apartment. It makes me feel good to be home but spending time outside is so much better for me. Especially in nature. It lowers my stress levels, gives me time to gather my thoughts, away from the distractions of everyday life. It also helps me to be more grounded and balanced. I find some grass and lie on it, I could watch, listen to the birds, walk in the rain….. and get wet. You know, normal stuff.
Stay happy. Stay healthy. Stay sane.