How to Figure out that Elusive Balance in your Life - Part 1: Human Connections

Life Coach Comic Strip
I have seen and read a stack load of articles on how to be successful, or do this and you will be happy, and yet there aren't many from people who are saying that they are happy and that they are living fulfilled lives. They are there too, but not nearly as many as those who tell you how to do it.
It is all too easy to see the Instagram pictures and the Facebook statuses, and think that those people must be happy because they are smiling and looking amazing. But are they really? Don't you think that they too are struggling to make sense of it all? Or trying find peace amidst the chaos and stress of everyday life? Or perhaps they are hiding in the spotlight then no one can see how unhappy or depressed they truly are?
Maybe it is time to look at your corner of the world and find out if your life is not in need of some changes before you are going to wonder why your life is going down the drain without you noticing.
If you are thinking about your life balance and feel that it is time to make some changes where do you start?
Life Coach Comic Strip (Human Connections)
I suppose you can start with any aspect of your life, but it probably makes sense, to begin with, our connections to other people: our families, friends, and colleagues.
Spend a few minutes on thinking about the quality of your relationships. How would you qualify your relationship with your partner, spouse, children, parents? Is the relationship good, so-so, barely on speaking terms, or non-existent?
And your friends? Or are they just buddies to hang out with? The same goes for women. We are more likely to talk to each other, but are we really talking or are we making up time with gossip and meaningless chatter about this sale or that paint colour?
Fixing relationships is not always a matter of spending more time together, although that would certainly help. But unless the relationship encompasses respect, love, and trust, time is not going to just make the issues go away.
While you won't necessarily feel love for your colleagues, respect and a sense of belonging also plays a role in the work environment. Dropping a friendship because of a lack of growth in the relationship is more possible than changing your boss with the bad attitude.
Unless of course, the relationship cannot be resolved, and one of you has to seek employment elsewhere.
Life Coach Comic Strip (Time to choose)
Whatever your situation, take a hard look at where you stand and get someone such as a life coach to be your guide when you take on this aspect of your life. Remember, you don't need a life coach. What you need to do is figure out what is wrong, and get moving on working on fixing that relationship as soon as you can.
No one's life is perfect, or in perfect balance, but you need to find out what you can do to make yours as best as you honestly can.
Next week we will take a look at our working lives - the part of our day where we spend the most of our time.
Until then, look after your relationships!

💐 Lizette

Chasing a Goal when even Small Obstacles seem Insurmountable

Photo by Andrei Dumitrescu
on Unsplash

Perhaps your journal can help out…

I can just hear your eyebrows shoot up as you think that I am losing my mind. Journal writing is not about chasing goals, I hear you say. And you would be correct. But what if you have something that you want to do, but you are having difficulty trying to figure out what that something is? That would be a goal, wouldn’t it? Instead of just letting your mind meander where it wants to, why not set yourself a target of say 10 or 20 minutes once a week, to ‘think’ about this elusive goal. Maybe it is not that elusive, but you are still unsure about some aspects of it, or you need to figure what you need to learn to get closer to that goal.
Because keeping a journal is a personal experience, you can dig deep into your psyche to find all the fears and excuses that are holding you back. It doesn’t have to be big obstacles they can be small too, but unless you unpack them one at a time, they will always be ‘the problem’. Even mountain climbers don’t just suit up and go. They study the geography of the mountain. They try to find out what others have done right or wrong to learn from their experiences. They even study the weather, because dying in a blizzard is not something you want to happen because you were not prepared.
Your goal could lie before you as your Mount Everest. And until the first person scaled its height, it was an insurmountable obstacle. Despite it being conquered, it will never be mastered by man because of the challenges each person has to face on their own ascent.
Your goal might seem unsurmountable too, but what can you learn from past experiences that you had in achieving a goal? What do you need to learn to conquer the next step?
Your journal is the ideal companion for that journey towards the achievement of that goal. Use the quiet time with your journal to good effect. Find out what is truly standing in your way. Reflect on the lessons of your past that can help you. What good things can you use? What are the not so good things that can you learn from? Open your mind, and you will see the route before you.
Of course not every road is paved with success, but with an open mind the perceived obstacles become a learning experience documented in your journal for the next bigger, and perhaps bolder challenge. A challenge that will see you better prepared than you could have imagined if you hadn’t recorded your journey towards achieving that success in the first place.
And in this case, it is not you that Take your Journal to the Next Level, but the other way around. And that can indeed be the next step in the evolutionary path of personal development.
A side note: I have drawn up a project plan for my next book, Take your Journal to the Next Level, and if all goes according to that plan the book will be ready for release in early 2019. At the time of this post, my progress stands at 31% complete.
Until next time, be healthy and happy!

Expectational Leadership with an expert

This week I am not going to write a long post. Instead, I am going to introduce you to a friend of mine, Steve van Straaten. He is an expert in expectational leadership and has developed a model around the concept for business. But, expectations are important in all aspects of our lives. Today, however, we are looking at the business side of things.

Have a look at these video clips, and tell me what you think.

I dug myself out of a rut, with art in my journal

Has your journal writing gotten stuck in a rut? Do you whine and complain every time you pick up a pen and then by the end of your daily entry feel just as frustrated and stuck as when you did when you started? If you look back at an entry a month ago, three months or six months ago and notice that nothing has changed, then you are in a rut. And I have been there. So how do you get out of it?
Without boring you with all the details, my work situation has been challenging on many levels. And it has very little to do with my daily tasks, but with the environment and some decisions that were made that caused some difficulties. As the result of that, I too had been writing about my frustrations and problems and most of which I can nothing about. I am sure some of you can relate to that feeling of absolute helplessness.

“Art isn’t only a painting. Art is anything that’s creative, passionate, and personal. An artists is someone who uses bravery, insight, creativity, and boldness to challenge the status quo. Art is a personal gift that changes the recipient. The medium doesn’t matter. The intent does. Art is a personal act of courage, something one human does that creates change in another.” Seth Godin

Then I read a few of my entries and realised with a shock that it has been going that way for more than a year. It made me reassess the true nature of my journal entries. Did I really want to moan about stuff I cannot change? While my work situation was not under my control, I had to decide if I was going to let my life go in the same negative way. I mean, my job is not my life. Yes, it is a large part of my day, but I could do more than moan about my job in my journal. For one, I can think about changes I can make in my life, and in my journal writing for a start.
A drawing in my journal
So I set about finding more ways to experiment with my journal entries not only to get out of my funk but also to see if there was more than just the usual whining. Of course, I have read the usual suspects, but I wanted more. I felt that there could be more. And I found them by looking beyond the usual journal prompts and books. In my new book, Take your Journal to the Next Level, I explore expressing myself with art, with craft items and generally just forgetting about the words for a while.
The words do come, but I found that the negativity was a lot less. In these more creative ways, I found more to reflect about, and even the idea for this book was born in such an artistic entry.
If you are a journal writer that find yourself in a rut, why not dig into your photographs or memorabilia of a recent trip or celebratory event, and write about that.
Many people believe that they don't have any artistic skills, so I experimented with methods to explore journal entries without so much as the ability to draw a straight line. And I found it in art, of all places.
So why not think beyond the words, and see where that can lead you?

PS: I have drawn up a project plan for the book, and if all goes according to that plan the book will be ready for release in early 2019. At the time of this post, my progress stands at 22% complete.

The Technical Construction File for South African exporters

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