What really matters (Part 1)

What really matters (Part 1)

What matters in your life?

How often have you come home, frustrated by the events of the day? Being stuck in traffic again? Invited to another meeting that will go on and on? Staying late for a “just a minute” request by your boss while needing to be home with your family?

It seems easier to rattle about how upset you are than to see what really matters. Do you remember what that is?

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Your friends or your time

Are you too busy for your friends?

A little while ago, I travelled to meet friends and family for a few days. The first part of the trip went super smooth. We all agreed to meet at a specific place and before moving on to the restaurant for dinner. It worked like a charm and you almost didn’t need What’s App to find out where anyone was.

We had the same arrangement with friends in the second city we visited:

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44 things to declutter before the end of 2017

What you can declutter easily

This year is almost over and many of my clients and friends are looking forward to 2018. Some are taking a few days off, spending time with the family and relaxing after a few busy weeks at work. Isn’t it amazing how we can be so focused and productive just to meet the weekly, monthly or even annual targets? Wouldn’t it be great to always be that driven?

Getting rid of unnecessary items in your home and office can give you that focus! Creating space, you see what really matters, what’s truly urgent and you can act accordingly, saving you time and energy. So what do we recommend you declutter in the final days of 2017? Here’s our list of 44 items you can easily let go:

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30 activities to do for yourself

Look after yourself

It’s amazing how quickly time flies. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m getting older, if time has a different speed in this region or what it is. This week was a really good one, very productive and energising. Despite it being such a positive one, I need to look after myself. This made me think about you. How do you look after yourself?

We’ve collected 30 simple and cheap ways to look after yourself:

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5 Awesome high intensity workouts for busy professionals

Guest post by Eric Bogy from Fit & Me

We’re very excited to have a guest post from Eric Bogy from Fit&Me. Fit&Me is dedicated to helping you achieve your health and fitness goals, and transform your body by offering the best fitness equipment and knowledge you need. Eric is sharing his workout routines, insights and tips for fabulous and effective workouts for you:

As a busy professional, it can often be tough to fit in a good quality workout. The gym and being active can take a back seat to the perils of your busy life and career.

We understand how frustrating it can be when you have skipped workouts or you’re simply too tired to try and fathom what you should do for maximum effectiveness.

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The benefits of doing nothing

La dolce far niente or the sweet doing nothing

When was the last time you did nothing? Intentionally nothing? You’re probably scratching your head. Why would anyone do nothing on purpose? Isn’t that just plain laziness? No! It’s time for you to intentionally do nothing and reap its benefits.

We fill our schedules like crazy. It seems if we don’t have an activity going on, we’re not really doing anything. Our mind gets into this overdrive mode. It’s so difficult to slow down and enjoy the now and then. Even doing nothing has a negative association. We have to be constantly occupied. When was the last time you queued for something and didn’t check your phone? These days, almost everyone on the metro is checking their phone or listening to some music or something else. How often do you see two people actually talk to each other while riding the metro?

Being constantly switched on, our brain is struggling to cope with not checking our phones or emails on the laptop. It’s almost an addiction to see who posted what on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. To follow the news 24/7 and to respond to work emails when waking up in the middle of the night seems to be the desirable goal. But this is really what’s good for us? Why is it so hard of doing nothing for a while?

There’s the negative connotation. We have to be doing something. After all, what’s the purpose of doing nothing. Being busy is such a great thing. It’s how we measure our success. Yet, it’s counter-productive. But can we be lazy doing nothing?

The benefits of doing nothing

Doing nothing is not the same as being lazy. That stigma is out and scientist are working on illustrating the benefits of doing something. After all, doing nothing does lead to something positive!

By doing nothing, we’re giving ourselves the opportunity to step back.

We become more creative and more productive.

We become more used to being in our own company.

We learn to live and experience the very moment.

Better quality of life

Scientist have even discovered that doing nothing actually increases our quality of life. Who would have thought that was one of the benefits? Having some down time, our brains have the time to digest our experiences and thoughts. It consolidates memories and reinforces learning. It also gets the chance to empty out the clutter which often occupies so much headspace.

By actually resting, your brain maintains its level of attention and stay sharp. This in return leads to us being able to discover new ideas, new concepts, see situations from a different angle, find new solutions. Our creativity is being refreshed and our productivity increases, too.

Taking a step back, we are giving ourselves a priceless gift: A better quality of life! And who doesn’t want to experience their life its the fullest and truest? Without constantly being sleep deprived, sluggish and exhausted, worried about not getting everything done and anxious about ever being good enough! Doing nothing can help you improve your life! I certainly want more from my life and if I can get that by la dolce fare niente, bring it on!

A little exercise

Are you a workaholic or a Fidgety Philip and still want to reap the benefits from doing nothing? Start small. Turn your TV, radio, email and internet off. Set your time for just 2 minutes, just 2 minutes and start do nothing. How does make you feel? Not sure what do with your time? All these unfinished and seemingly pressing projects popping up in your head? Allow them in, recognise them and yet, don’t write them down or even do them. Try to enjoy these 2 minutes of doing nothing.

When you do it for the first time, it probably feels very odd and strange. Or at least it did for me. Do this activity for a week and notice how your thoughts and emotions change during these 2 minutes. Gradually increase your time to 5 minutes, then 10 minutes and 15 minutes. Can you last 30 minutes, a whole half hour, doing nothing?

I’d love to hear what your experiences of doing nothing has been. What was challenging? What came naturally to you? Write me a short comment below.

Until next time,
Agni

The benefits of having plants

5 top reasons you should have plants!

My friend is finally getting one of my plants tonight. I’m probably as excited as she is. Can you believe it will be her first plant since she moved in about 3 years ago? My home now doesn’t have as many plants as the one back in Germany. When I moved to the US in 2007, I couldn’t take my plants with me and it broke my heart. At our current home, there are a few tall and big ones plus many smaller and medium sized ones. I love the touch they add to the house but even more, plants bring you so many benefits:

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Pack your hospital bag

Are you ready for your hospital stay?

Being hospitalised can be daunting and scary for many. I remember my surgery in 2012 and while it was the best thing for me, my family was worried. There’s the risk any surgery brings along. You never know the outcome and having a doctor who’s well trained and experienced in the field can make a difference. Equally important is a doctor you can talk to, who answers your questions and listens to your concerns is vital. With so much on your mind, packing is probably at the bottom of your thoughts. That’s why we prepared this checklist for you!

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You need to have surgery?

You need to have surgery

What to do before the surgery

So, your doctor told you that you’ll need to have surgery. There are probably a thousand questions running through your mind. Will the surgery have the desired outcome and relief? What are some of the risks involved? And who will look after my family and home? While initially you may be surprised or even shocked, the better prepared you’ll enter that hospital, the smoother your recovery can be.

What do you need to do?

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