Meeting your expectations on special celebrations.

It was my birthday quite recently and I found myself wanting to have one of those days where everything just goes your way and everyone does what you want (within reason, of course) in celebration of your big day.

I am surrounded by really lovely people that do really give it their best and they do try and make the day special for me, yet my hopes for it to be a certain way are so high it just ends up escalating into a small argument because of miscommunication.

Once the day was over and the pressure of “doing something special” for that particular day was gone I found myself having a much better following day as I could just sit back and enjoy the day no matter how it is.

For me I even get similar feelings on Christmas – it ~has~ to be special, but it never is “just right”.

I am sure not everyone will relate to this, but those of you who do, what do you think was the lesson I learned?

Any day can be special if you just allow it to be good…and maybe having super high expectations from a particular day just because it has a label (Christmas/Easter/Birthday etc) or the people around you on such a day is not all that healthy. The day will be what you make it, so it might be a good idea to stop saying it ~has to be~ a certain way or another.

That probably goes for weddings too, no? Not that I would know 😀

Maybe celebrations are the times when we need to sit back and take a deep breath the most? Breathe in, out…and pretend you are at least trying to relax 😀

So what days do you give high meaning to? Do you think it usually works out well to have certain expectations towards a particular day?

 

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What kind of traveller are you? They joys of packing.

In anticipation of a short trip away from home for a few days I find myself facing the very adult-like task of packing a suitcase. I suppose packers can be divided into:

  • Those who take a teeny bag with the bare essentials.
  • Those who take a medium “cabin size” bag with essentials and a few clothes.
  • Those who pack a “I must take everything with me lest that other place is a desert” 20kg+ size suitcase.

I am lucky enough to be in the mid range.

Of course, next problem, when to pack? So I suppose, again, most of us will either:

  • Pack days in advance.
  • Pack the previous night.
  • Pack a few hours before leaving.
  • Throw stuff at the bag in a panic frenzy 20 minutes before leaving.

I like to think of myself as a mixture between the last two 😀

So does all this say anything about our habits? Did we pick them up from a relative or are we doing stuff a certain way because we don`t want to do stuff like our nan/dad/uncle/sister did? (Yes, nan, thanks, I do not want to be at the train station 2h in advance xD)

Here`s another bit of human behaviour we can analyse…after we are safely on our bus/train/flight and have a spare hour 😀

So what are your packing habits? Do you ever question where you got them from?

When the angry bug strikes and will not go away.

Today is one of those days when no matter how hard I try, everything seems to be annoying or upsetting.

Something you might have heard before? I suppose most of us will relate to such days on some level 😀

So what to do about them? Here are my suggestions on the steps to take on an especially grumpy day to help yourself get back on that silver pony:

  • Just sit down and allow yourself to be angry/sad/upset. Just sit there and have a good cry or have a good shout off at the wall if the place is appropriate for it.
  • Punch a pillow or two – great anger relief on a budget.
  • Go to a remote location and shout or swear (purely for the purposes of releasing negative emotions) very loudly if you cannot do that at home.
  • Have a very long walk, preferably somewhere with few people.
  • Watch a funny show.
  • Have a sulk-a-tron. A what? You know, one of those days when you just lay on the couch, watch lazy TV and sulk about everything, go all in and over the top into “poor me” mode just for today.
  • Talk it out with someone. So what is really bothering you?
  • Have an extra nap – you have earned it.
  • Sing a little song or hum a tune – maybe even make up lyrics about what bothers you.
  • Go for a long drive, maybe go to a place where you can drive a tat-bit faster than usual.
  • Take good care of yourself – treat yourself to a nice cup of tea/coffee, have an extra biscuit/chocolate.
  • Blog about your feelings..because we all do 😀

All will be well tomorrow! 😉

So what do you do when you get upset? Can you recommend something easy that most of us could do?

“You can heal your life” and other Hay time discoveries.

I was scrolling though facebook the other day and someone on a spiritual group asked what people could recommend for pain – one of the suggestions I saw was eft, which I have discussed before, and the other was the book “You can heal your life” by Louise Hay.

I must admit, until now I was not familiar with the work of Louise Hay, but I did commit myself to picking up the book and giving it a good read…and I loved it!

Louise Hay proposes the idea that we create our own reality and where you are now is just a result of your previous thinking. Nothing too innovational and an idea that has been toyed with by many self-help experts, but it is her positive spin that I especially enjoyed.

Some people have suggested that this is simply victim blaming, as in, it is all your fault that you have this mess if something is not working. I prefer to look at it from a point of power – if I have created this, that means I have the power to change it and I am not a helpless victim of circumstance.

There are various positive affirmations (if they work for you) available throughout the book to address various issues as well as a nice list of the metaphysical ideas behind what emotions cause what kind of pain once suppressed…and I must admit, in the context of the whole book and upon starting to question myself, I did find that most of her ideas and proposed reasons did resonate well with me.

So if you have a chance, have a little read. Her newsletter also offers various little bits and pieces of positive information…and we all need a little bit of extra positivity! 🙂

Are you familiar with her work? Can you recommend your fave book? Do you disagree with the basic idea she proposes of creating our own reality or do you like it?

Do affirmations work? And what is an afformation?

Most of us at some point in our lives have heard about affirmations – the idea that if you repeat something positive to yourself often enough, you will believe it and it will happen.

Cool, right?

And although they work for some, there seems to be a lot of stories where people do not get too far with them.

Some years ago I stumbled upon a gentleman called Noah St John who has written a book called “The Secret Code of Success”. Now I will raise my hand and admit that I never finished the book, because what one of the first few chapters taught really resonated with me.

His theory is that the brain is wired to find solutions to problems, so if you try and convince yourself of “I am so rich!” your brain just goes “Pft, yeah right”.

…and then we come to his proposed solution: Afformations

Wait, what? Did you just misspell affirmations? No, no I did not, they are called afformations.

An afformation poses a question to your brain instead of a statement and our brains are wired to seek answers, so it works much more effectively.

For example, instead of repeating “I am rich” 100 times, you would just now and then ask yourself “Why am I so rich/happy/healthy?” or “Why do I enjoy my life so much?”, “Why is everything going so well?” etc.

Boom, brain goes wild and tries to look for an answer and proof that you are rich/healthy/happy…of course, provided you stick with it…

I have found that this works much more efficiently for me than the classic affirmations, so I encourage you to have a look at his work or to just give afformations a try – you are basically stating the same positive intent that you want…just as a question to yourself 😉

Do you use affirmations? Do they work for you? Have you tried afformations?

What kind of people are you attracting?

What kind of people are you attracting?

Are the people at work treating you nicely or are you getting small jabs thrown at you more often than would be polite? How are your relatives treating you? What about your significant other?

I found myself in a situation where acquaintances that used to be nice suddenly were being overly mean and if you believe that you create your own reality, the question of course arose as to why (besides them being mean or bored).

So if you ever have been in a similar situation, I`ve devised a little guidance tapping list (please make sure you are familiar with the tapping points) that you can follow and adjust as you need to – you can replace person with persons for instance. Just make sure you do tap on the indicated points as you say the statements out loud.

Karate Chop Point: Even though this person is mean to me for no reason, I love forgive and accept myself. Even though this person is picking on me for no apparent reason, I love forgive and accept myself. Even though this is so unpleasant and I do not know why they do this, I choose to love forgive and accept myself and this person.

Round 1

Eyebrow: This person is constantly being mean to me.

Side of the eye: They are super negative towards me.

Under the eye: I might know why that is so or I might not, but the truth is

Under the nose: I am not happy with how I am being treated by those around me.

Chin: And this makes me really upset.

Collar bone:  If I create my own reality, am I really choosing to attract such nasty people?

Under the arm: And if that is so, I am just angry at myself for doing that.

Round 2

Top of the head: Even though I cannot affect how other people treat me

Eyebrow: I choose to acknowledge to myself that I am worthy and deserving of respect

Side of the eye: and I choose to treat myself with respect.

Under the eye: Maybe I have actually just mistreated myself and this person is just reflecting that back to me?

Under the nose: I choose to lovingly stop mistreating myself.

Chin: I was doing the best I could with the information I had

Collar bone:  and even though I might have stumbled, I got there in the end.

Under the arm: I am ok. I am safe and I deserve love and respect

Top of the head: And I choose to realise that in body mind and spirit.

Nice big deep breath!

EFT/Tapping – how much positivity do you need?

Those of you who are familiar (or would like to familiarise yourself) with taping will know that the idea is that you gently tap on certain meridian points in the body to send signals to the brain to release certain stuck emotions.

Some people are a bit sceptical about going into detail of the negative emotions while tapping for fear of attracting what you focus on i.e. the fear/bad stuff (this is where the law of attraction comes in). I am a strong believer that this is not the case – bringing negative emotions to the top whilst tapping does help you acknowledge them and eventually release them.

Some keen tappers only tap on whatever is concerning/bothering them…like me. Others seem to be all for doing a negative round of tapping, followed up by a positive one.

My question of the day is – if we release negative emotions with tapping, but do not put anything positive in their place, would that cause us trouble?

As in, if you take something away, you leave a blank space which your mind/body/subconscious will rush to fill in with something and if you are not in control, it usually isn`t exactly something positive e.g. like quitting smoking just to find yourself overeating now.

So how do you consciously replace a bad emotion with a good one…for good? Would a positive tapping round be the deciding factor, or would something else be required.

Now that is what I am pondering about today…

Weather Watchers

Let`s talk about the weather – a very popular subject here in the UK and anyone can chip in 😀

Latvia is a country of 4 seasons – it`s very warm in the summer, very cold in the winter and blissfully in between in spring and autumn.

Some say that the UK on the other hand only has one season – it`s always chilly and raining. Having been a few places in the UK I can honestly say that although we do get rain, it`s certainly not raining non stop as the internet would like you to believe.

I`m a fan of warmth and sunshine. Yes, I know, what the hell am I doing in the UK? 😀 But I also very much love the fresh smell you get in the air when it has just rained…and the colours spring brings.

In both the UK and Latvia when it rains that means it is usually cold…for those of you who are from or have been to Japan, you will know that it can rain and be warm at the same time…which is close to perfect for me 😀

And it rained today over here…just shortly…the air is still amazingly fresh outside after it – welcome spring!

It`s the little things in life!

So what is your favourite season? What is your favourite weather?

Daylight Savings, go away my friend.

So tomorrow in many parts of the world the usual nightmare of daylight savings begins.

Remember to turn your clocks one hour forward on Sunday, 26th March 2017.

This being another one of those grown up things you just have to suddenly remember and take into account (thank you twitter for the reminder), lest you accidentally arrive at work an hour early…or late in the autumn.

What puzzles me though is why do we intentionally get one less hour of light in the winter and an extra hour of light (when there is already plenty of it) in summer…as in why do the clocks not go forward in autumn and back in spring not vice versa!

I appreciate that originally farmers benefited from this, but now it is only the electricity companies having a ball every winter for an extra hour of artificial light.

Is it not a bit of an archaic tradition?

When I lived in Japan they simply did not have such a thing…and you know what? I certainly did not miss it. And their economy sure ain`t struggling because of it either.

So there you go – another grown-up chore you never needed nor wanted to add to the list, lest you get too comfortable in your daily rhythm! 😀

So what do you think about daylight savings? Is it a good thing? Is there a benefit to it? Or should the world unite for a petition to stop this nonsense so I can go back to bed at the same time all year round? 😀

Bargain hunting with the Practical Latvian

Like many girls I actually enjoy shopping…not so much food shopping though, which is my chosen subject for today 😀

Being Latvian I am damn good at finding bargains. To put this into context, many Latvians are not too well off so life kind of teaches you to be a professional discount/bargain hunter, which I am actually proud of. So even though I would say that now in the UK I have enough to be happy, the bargain hunter instinct will always kick in anyway.

So here are my food bargain hunting tips for starters (…or professionals to just refresh your memory):

  • Eye level, eye level, eye level – whatever is eye level will usually be the most expensive so I will always check the lower shelves (or the higher ones) in the supermarket first.
  • Food brands – when it comes to food, I personally could not care what the label said, as long as it tastes nice, but even if you are a fussy eater, I invite you to give the supermarket own brands a go. They are usually much cheaper and of the same quality (Ok, maybe with some exceptions).
  • Compare the prices on the same products with different brand labels.
  • Have a trip round your local supermarkets once every month or so and compare the prices on your fave products. Maybe it is worth doing half your shopping in one place and half in another (if you have the time) or just to swap your main place of shopping?
  • Budget brand shops like Lidl, Aldi, Netto etc. stock a wide range of really good products for (usually) lower prices…so even though your gran might shop there, why not give them a try?
  • Don`t believe the slogans! Especially if they claim to be “cheaper” – always compare the prices yourself.
  • Shop in the evening and make the best of the “reduced” isles some shops have – the amount of fancy humus I`ve found in these for 1/3 of the price *daydreams*
  • Check out your local “Polish” stores if you are in the UK – provided you know what you are buying, they have some great products…and sometimes some good discounts too.
  • Treat it as a sport not a chore – make it into a family game – “who can find the cheapest sausage wins an extra bar of chocolate because they saved x amount of money” 😀

Not buying the fancy milk or the Heinz beans adds up so I can buy more of the things that matter…like shoes 😀 I`m still well fed and I`ve had a good time “hunting”.

What are your bargain hunting tips? Do you think it is too time taking?