3 Important Things

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communication-phones.jpg

I sat working at the coffee shop and watched a father and two boys who I assumed were his sons walk in.  They sat together at a table, the father hunched over his phone, not looking up.  The two young boys had a phone between them and were playing a game on it.  Neither the boys nor the father acknowledged each other.  The manager came over to greet them.  The child holding the phone didn’t even look up.  They were there for about 15 or 20 minutes, collecting takeaways and then they left.  In all that time they didn’t interact.

Most of us are guilty of this to some extent.

If we keep in mind the things that are important to us, we will put our phones down, close our laptops early and switch off the tv.

What 3 things are most important to you?

When you identify what they are remember them when living your day to day life.  There’s a good chance it will feel satisfying and connecting.

With love

Eve

The Singing Staff

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Enjoy the moment

Last week I was shopping at Woolies Norwood.  I walked past the fridges at the back of the store and I heard some people softly singing a beautiful song that I really love.  I thought that maybe I would be lucky and stood there for a few seconds more…..  I was.

Out of the back came 10 to 15 staff members with wonderful voices singing Asimbonanga**I assume in preparation for Madiba’s birthday.  I decided to follow them around and I chose not to video them but instead to just be in the moment and enjoy the singing.

I was astounded to notice though that other shoppers just gave a cursory glance at them and continued on their shopping.  When the staff continued singing at the entrance of the shop, me and two other women were watching them and thoroughly enjoying their performance.  Three people!

I was taken aback at people’s complacency to having free, beautiful, live entertainment while doing a mundane task such as shopping.  Why weren’t other people stopping to watch and listen?  People didn’t even smile at them or clap when they finished (except me and two other ladies).  Why was shopping more important than a one or two minute stop to appreciate other people’s efforts?  Look, at least it gave me something to write about.

We do shopping every week, sometimes even more often.  Here was something out of the ordinary and people didn’t deem it worthy to pause and just breathe and enjoy.

Stop.  You’ve got to enjoy the little things.  One day you are not going to wish you had spent more time shopping, you are going to wish you had stopped to listen to the staff choir or to look up at the sky and the clouds or to smile at a stranger and watch them smile back.

These are the moments of joy.

With love

Eve

** This link is the Soweto Choir singing this song 3 years ago at Woolies I added it just so that you could hear the song. 

 

The Perils of Giving your Opinion on Social Media

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opinion - pirates of the caribean running awaySomething I have noticed about social media is that if you give your opinion and people don’t like it, it’s scary how aggressive they become.

I often like to put across the other person’s point of view.  The one that nobody wants to hear.  The critics only choose one perspective and then get so angry if anyone challenges that.  But not only do they get angry, they get abusive, insulting and downright rude.  People “scream” about what an idiot you are for giving that particular opinion but they don’t realise they are acting the same way.

I saw this short video clip recently which sums up what happens when you give an opinion that people disagree with. It’s not too farfetched haha (click).

opinion - social mediaSo these days when I give my opinion on something I first ask myself a question or two…..

  • Will anyone really care? (I don’t even know these people!)
  • Will my opinion make a difference? (Unlikely.  People love their own opinions and usually stick with them.)
  • Am I going to get them to change their opinion? (Probably not although there is always hope.)
  • What is my objective here? Or Why do I want to do this?
  • Is it worth my time?
  • Is it worth the aggravation (after I get all the hateful replies).

By asking a few of these questions I usually stop myself from adding my two cents worth which saves me ages in time and fear (of people’s terrible comments).

However, if it is something that is important to me I do have my say but I have my own rules about that too:

  • Don’t insult someone or be derogatory.
  • Don’t swear or be rude.
  • Don’t be aggressive.
  • State the facts.
  • Back it up with proof if necessary.
  • Read it over a few times.  Remember tone of voice doesn’t come out in a message.

Have you got any other tips or comments (preferably helpful ones)?

Have a great week.

Eve

Empty Cups

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self care - empty cupIt’s true that you can’t pour from an empty cup.  You need to fill your cup with things that build you up, make you happy, fill your soul.

If you don’t have any idea about what to do for yourself (because people who are always taking care of others’ needs forget to take care of themselves) then google some ideas e.g.

  • Fun things to do for me
  • Self care ideas
  • Artist date ideas
It’s so easy to forget yourself, to be selfless and busy but without taking care of yourself you can’t take care of anybody else because you’ll be burnt out or feeling resentful.

Self Care - snoopy bathingSo give yourself some love this week and let me know how it went.

With love
Eve

The Kite on my Roof

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busy 2The word “busy” has powerful connotations.  When we keep saying we are busy it means we have no space left for anything or anyone else.

We fill our lives with so many activities and there’s no time to just chill.

There are things we want to be doing but we are just too busy.  Usually those things are the most meaningful ones.  Like going to see a play, getting some fresh air at the botanical gardens, doing a good deed, taking the family on a really nice outing or having a long relaxing bath.

When we leave out the things which mean something to us It’s because we haven’t really thought too deeply about it and therefore don’t have proper direction.  When we have direction and intention and know why things are important to us we make place for them in our lives.  Filling our time up with rushing leaves a certain emptiness or frustration within us at the end of the day.*

It’s the same for our children.  I hear some of my children’s friends say that they don’t have time for social arrangements because they are too busy.  How can a child be so busy that they don’t have time to play?  If that’s what is happening to the children then certainly for us as adults it must be worse.  These children are also perpetuating a “busy” value system into their lives and when they are adults they will do the same thing and won’t have time for what is important to them.

The consequence is burnout, depression or physical ailments.

What really fulfills us is meaning, fun, laughter, love, giving, sharing, connection.  We won’t find those things in filling up our days to the brim.  Look at your schedule and see if you can take something out.  Leave time to lie on the grass and look at the birds flitting around in the trees.  The other day I had the amazing opportunity of seeing a bird of prey on my roof (I think it was a kite – click here to see what a kite is).  If I had been on my phone or rushing around doing lots and lots of stuff I would have missed it.

Yes of course there is a lot to do but try and take out something and put yourself and the things which mean something to you into your calendar.  If necessary physically write them into your diary and make them as important as any appointment would be.

There’s freedom to be found here……

With love
Eve

*I will be running the Power of Purpose on Sunday mornings in July and August.  Early bird special ends on 30 June.  Book now.

Creative Boredom :)

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boredom curiosityYesterday I had to go to SARS* to sort out some issue which has been going on for some months now.  I have spent about 9 hours there altogether and believe me they have not been the most exciting 9 hours I have spent.

This time I took a book with and some work but I couldn’t concentrate because they keep calling out numbers and I’m scared I’ll miss mine.

I decided instead of being bored I would do some people watching.  I also wrote down what I experienced as a story on watzapp to my children.  It was a funny story which included the people who work there and had me in stitches laughing at my childrens’ reactions.

Before I knew it I was finished.  The two hours I was there became something that was creative and fun instead of the normal time waster that it had been in the past.

Here is an excerpt from my watzapp story.

“Well I am finally here.  After many weeks of procrastinating.  Surprisingly when I arrived at 12:20ish there was no queue at all, I just walked in.  You can never tell with SARS.  After getting my ticket – number 384 – I sat down with time ahead to do whatever I wanted to do with these empty moments.  I unfortunately ate my snack in the first three minutes of being here so now I am officially snackless……

Getting uncomfortable in these airport seats I shift to the side, lifting my boot clad feet up on the row of empty chairs beside me.  The steel arm of the chair cuts into my back and I have to turn back to my original sitting position.

Just when I thought this place was unusually quiet, a loud drilling noise emanates from somewhere yonder.  Perhaps that is the room they use to force people to pay their taxes.

I regret not bringing more snacks…..

Finally I’m at the counter.  The machine won’t read my finger prints, something I had planned all along.  The lady picks fragments from my memory to be sure I am who I say I am.  She tells me I can’t use the papers I have brought to verify my address even through I received them from SARS at my home address.  This is a mystery to me…….”

Anyway, that’s all for now.

I hope you have some opportunities for fun this week.

With love
Eve

 

*SARS – South African Revenue Services

Terrorism and the Butterfly Effect

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There is a lot of reeling happening throughout the world as terror keeps hitting soft targets.

Feelings of anger, helplessness and fear fill our hearts as we read the news or our Social Media posts, some people even watch video footage of the attacks (something that I can’t do).

Questions come up in our minds….. Why?  When is this going to end?  How can people do this to each other?

We have fearful thoughts about it……. The world is a dangerous place, nowhere is safe, I am not safe.

What is there to do about it?

Actually not much.   You can’t really change everything that is happening in the world especially if it has already happened.

You can only affect your small world.

So make a point of affecting your small world.  Be good to the people around you, give more charity, give of your time, pray for peace, spread kindness.
Butterfly theory
Remember the butterfly effect…..  Change YOUR world and maybe you will change THE world.

With love
Eve