Writing Challenge

About Ten Things That Make Me Really Happy

“I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it”Groucho Marx

Even if my online priorities are somewhere else right now, I have to admit I miss this blog and the WordPress community. But… I have yet to find some structure in my daily doings to make room for Heart to Follow, meaning I either have all kinds of ideas what to write about but zero time, or tons of time to blog but zero inspiration.

I’m normally not that much into writing challenges, but this one I stumbled upon and it triggered something inside me. So I am going to give it a go, although I won’t post something new every day. I simply don’t have the time for that right now, but one post a week I should be able to manage – I hope.

Without further ado, here is challenge 1: List ten things that make you really happy. In no particular order, those things are:

1. My pets
Those of you that have been following me for a while know I am an animal lover pur sang, and that I’ve have pet gerbils for quite a few years now. After all the past drama of sickness and death, I am now the proud owner of two furry friends called Meeko (brown) and Dorian (grey). Watching them fret around in their massive cage or just observing their beauty makes me (very) happy.

Meeko and Dorian getting comfortable together

2. Chocolate
Really, need I say more?

3. Reading
Trust me I do not lie when I state I am always reading one book or other. I just finished reading Ivanhoe today and already I have two other books waiting for me – and that’s just leisure. It’s standard for me to keep a book of professional interest on my night stand as well as a coaching magazine nearby, and of course I read blogs when I have the time. Really, even subtitles are devoured by my eyes.

4. Music
A good song can make my day or break a bad mood. I am not sure if I’ve ever told you this, but sometimes I experience music in colours. That is to say, one song can “feel green and yellow” while another can make me feel white and gold instead. I love all kinds of music as well, as you can tell from my personal playlist.

5. My family
Did you know “AuntSamantha” is one word? Well, it is according to my nephew and nieces, and I am proud to say all but one of them either have had or are having an “AuntSamantha-phase”, meaning they are seemingly obsessed with me, especially when I am around. I like that.
The only exception here is my youngest niece, who has yet to turn one. But she’ll get there, too, I am certain.

6. PANDAS!
Some people complain when I say I see most of the world in black and white, but then they talk to me for over five minutes and they understand: I am a pandaholic by heart. I love all animals, but these are my favourites.

Pandas, pandas everywhere! ❤

7. Horror
A good horror movie is never wasted on me. A bad horror movie even more so! There is something brilliant in fictitious evil, especially when the storyline is good. I really enjoy this genre, both on screen and in writing.

8. Travelling (MOUNTAINS!)
I love visiting new countries or, if that’s impossible due to, say, COVID-19, new places in general. I recently visited a Dutch isle and had a wonderful time observing sheep and cycling to and fro a lighthouse. Talking to locals, figuring out some history and trying specialties… And don’t get me started on mountains. I live in the only mountain-less country! It’s unfair… All I see is open fields with cows or rows of tall buildings. Bring me some mountains!

9. Writing
Playing with words, trying to find the best one. Creating a sentence with an amazing build-up… I really should do it more. Maybe combine it with coffee, cakes, music and/or chocolate. And some pandas, of course.

10. Revenge
Nothing tastes as sweet as a successful revenge, muahaha >:)

Nah, just kidding. I don’t take revenge. But accidents happen…

The real 10. Coffee and cakes
I feel these belong together. In Germany they call it Kaffee mit Kuchen for a reason. A really nice cup of coffee, a very well made piece of cake (with or without chocolate), with a good book or bad horror movie, must be one of the best combinations to making me a very happy person indeed.

 

 

 

 


What are some things that make YOU very happy? Let me know in the comments or take on this challenge yourself – let me know if you do! (You can find the original and full challenge here)

Aside, Heart to Post

About Awards & Appreciation

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy: they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom”Marcel Proust


I have to admit it’s easy to forget about award
nominations. Not because I don’t care, rather because I don’t see myself as someone who should receive any.

And that’s not because I think I am horrible – I don’t – but more so because I don’t think my writing is that good. Or better put: I always think there’s room for improvement.

So, to Rez in particular (this post was WAY overdue!) and Kamal as well: I am SO sorry for this late reply to making me a nominee for two wonderful blogging awards ❤ ❤

I’ve thought about the nominations and have read about the awards you want to give me, and I find myself torn between accepting out of gratitude and declining because it’s not me. I am going to do the unimaginable and decline out of gratitude.

First of all: thank you. Thank you for giving me a pat on the back, for liking my writings and for making me feel appreciated and worth it. Thank you thank you thank you from one kind heart to the kind hearts of the two of you. I mean it: thank you!

However, I am going to decline the awards (and any that might follow in the future) for the not-so-simple fact that just the nominations mean so much more to me. I don’t need an actual award to fill the widget-side of my blog or to crown a special page when I’ve got people (re-)visiting my blog, liking and commenting on my writings. The award is an award, however valuable, but you are a living human being I’m connecting with. You’re priceless! And that means more to me in appreciation than any award could ever reflect.

So, again: thank you for thinking of me and nominating me. But ever so more thank you for being a part of my community. It just wouldn’t be the same without you in it 🙂

That goes to everyone who’s been visiting my blog, be it for a day or for the 6+ years I’ve been here. And especially to Rez from Rez Scribblez and Kamal from Kamal’s Blogging Cafe. You have wonderful blogs and deserve more attention from me. You all do.

 

 

Letters to Life

Letters to Life (65)

“Failure is only the opportunity more intelligently to begin again”Henry Ford

Dear Life,

Doing my taxes the other day got me wondering about two things:

1 –  Did they have to make it this difficult? The wording of some of the questions was badly chosen at best and completely incomprehensible for the remainder of the tax forms.
I mean,  I went to college! I graduated With Distinction! So we’ve already established I am not stupid, yet I feel stupid when I ponder my brilliant mind about what exactly it is my tax service wants to know…

2Thank goodness there are people in this World who devoted their time, attention and college choices to become tax advisors. I honestly don’t know how they do it, Life, but it must be one of your miracles not to see them crumble and falter under such boring tasks that come with – UGH – doing taxes.

Anyway, adamant to learn how to do my own – now that I am a business owner it’s gotten more challenging – I decided to try and figure it out before my tax advising cousin comes over next week to check on my hard work and possibly laugh at my tax stupidity (in which case I will not feed him).

2018 was my first year as a professional life coach and my one and only paying customer scored me a whooping €49 in tax returns last year! Keen on getting even more out of it this year, the shocking negativity of the numbers hit me: -€800.

That’s minus eight hundred Euros, Life! That means I spent more money than I earned!

However disappointing this outcome, I did not take too long to get over it. I am learning how to run a business, how to make it profitable and I am learning how to do my taxes. This is my learning curve!

So my taxes are a downer, but who knows what wonders await me in coaching? I mean, I am only just getting started. This? This is but a warm-up!

Before you know it, I’ll be coaching (and doing my taxes) With Distinction. Because I am brilliant ❤

Did your taxes depress you, too, or are they also making way for improvement next year? Let me know I am not alone in this! ↓↓

Letters to Life

Letters to Life (64)

“Don’t stumble over something behind you”Seneca the Younger

Dear Life,

Old habits die hard, or so they say. I am afraid this might be true, as I find myself still questioning almost every move I make as if everyone else has been given the almighty power to weigh me – and possibly find me too light.

What has come over me? I wish I knew what drives that part of me, as I am the first to tell anyone either willing or unwilling to listen that other’s opinions are just that: opinions. If somebody thinks what you did was stupid, it does not make you a stupid person. It just means you did something considered silly by someone else.

Two things happened this week that caused me to experience a few moments of self-doubt: First, I raised my wages for coaching. Although this made me feel a bit icky, it also felt right. I was able to rationalise my move and thus feel okay about it.

Second, I didn’t dare to share that weekly success in my coaching community. Why? I was too scared somebody would travel to my website, take a peek at my new wages, then make the journey back to their keyboard just to tell me I am not worth my prices.

For thirty-plus years I’ve lived in constant fear of somebody telling me I am not worth it, Life.

That has to stop. From this day forward, I am going to show myself the love and attention I am worth. I am going to actively appreciate myself for the next seven days at least (and then some).

Feeling worthless is like a dress that no longer suits me; I’ve outgrown it. It’s old and worn-down and I am tired of the way it looks on me.

I’m going to replace it, Life, finally. Because I AM worth it 🙂

Are you aware you are a worthy being? Or are you still figuring it out (like me)? Let me know in a comment! ↓↓

Letters to Life

Letters to Life (63)

“My only competition is the person I was yesterday”Unknown

Dear Life,

Psychology class taught me about conflict theory and its division of people into two groups: the one is focused on cooperaton working together towards something, being a part of a team. The other is competition based and its members strive only to always be the best, regardless of others.

I believe, Life, that even in pretending I was cooperative, I’ve spent the majority of you being the opposite, desperately trying to be the best at something, just so someone would acknowledge my talents, my worth, my sole existence.

Everything was a competition to me which, in my eyes,  I was constantly failing. This made me try even harder to gain everyone’s (or just someone’s) respect, turning you into a vicious circle of failure, Life.

This week I met someone who’s a lot like the me from twenty years ago: always keen to shower anyone and everything with never-asked-for-and-seldomly-accurate-wisdom, pressuring for others to believe their words so as to elevate everyone’s opinion of them.

This encounter reminded me that somewhere in my past, Life, I’ve strayed from my base camp and have found solace on the other side of competition. Thankfully, I liked the ambience here much better, as now, years later, being cooperative keeps rewarding me with growing amounts of inner peace.

There’s less fighting, there’s less frustration, there’s less seriousness. There’s much more room for fun, laughter, and, most importantly: others.

If psychology is right on this one, I feel I am on the better team now. There’s more people willing to help each other out, and even if you don’t excel at something (or anything), there’s acceptance and kindness all around.

Being competitive is a lonely walk and I thank you for leading me the opposite way.

You and I, Life. That’s teamwork.


 

 

Are you competitive or cooperative? Let me know in the comments (or write a better blog post about this topic) 😉 ↓↓