Passport to the world

Becoming a global citizen, what does that entail? After getting my second passport, a friend on Facebook played with the idea of having passports for “citizens of the world” – how good would that be?

I imagine it would mean free entry to all countries, honorary dinners at the “citizens of the world club” and a fascinating Facebook community sharing key insights to living truly globally. Of course, you would have to pass a test to get this citizenship, maybe with language tests on at least 3 fluent languages and showcasing experiences from at least 5 different cultures?

Speaking different languages is such a gift. Because you really get to understand a culture when you understand the structure of the language and the thinking behind it.

I must admit my benchmark went to another level on a flight to Europe, sitting next to a former correspondent speaking 17 languages, including currently having a go at Vietnamese – his first ever attempt at a Tone language.

How fascinating is that?? I may be nerdy, but it got me very excited learning about the principles of a Tone language, and my number of spoken languages suddenly felt a bit average. It’s always good getting new benchmarks?!!

Anyway, regarding the global citizenship: some of us may already be a member without knowing. I recently heard about “Third Culture Kids”, which is children who have lived in several countries, bringing their parents’ culture, the new culture of their current home country (countries in plural if they have moved several times) into their personal, self-created Third culture – which mixes and takes the best from all of above. So, they are not without roots, but instead using their diverse roots to create their own tapestry and setting new benchmarks of cultural understanding.

Just like the family structures have developed over the last decades, maybe our view on nationality and where home is could do with some development?

The key goal of global citizens would for me be the deeper understanding and respect for each other. Realising deeply that even if we have obvious external differences, we are all the same on the inside. With hopes, fears, lack and love.

So a cheer to the adventurous global citizens this week – thanks for expanding our horizons!

Like teenagers again

Some friends of ours slept in the car the other week, coming back to the grandparents’ place after a great night and finding themselves locked out. It can’t get more teenager than that – sleeping the last few hours of the night in a car outside your parents’ place. Fabulous.

That’s exactly what we need to do more of. All of us. Enjoying ourselves, taking time to just be, to have fun with people we like hanging out with. Exactly like we (may or may not!) have done as teenagers. If you didn’t, grab a second chance. Celebrating friends’ 50th at the moment, we and lots around us have that freedom coming back now with kids looking after themselves.

But it doesn’t matter if you, reading this, have kids or not. If you’re in your 20’s, 30’s or 40’s, in a high-pressure career or retired – it doesn’t matter at all. The point is, as we’re so busy becoming responsible adults, doing the things we’ve seen others do as adults, we forget. We forget that the most important thing is to keep your childlike curiosity alive, to tap into your teenage-like enjoyment and laissez-faire now and then.

What’s something teenagish you can do today? An hour of something “don’t care what others think”, whether it’s having a beer on the balcony in your undies, trashing in front of your favourite TV show with a big tub of ice cream, engulfing yourself in a book in your PJs all day not having showered for days, swapping chewing gum (used) with your partner, spending hours experimenting which sound you can get out of an empty bottle, dropping in uninvited for a cuppa at a friend’s, sleeping on the beach – whatever. A bit gross, a bit stupid, a bit embarrassing. Do it!

Take the best of the teenage years you can come up with, and add little doses into everyday life – leaving out the tormenting, painful other parts of being a teenager, how good is that?

It’s a good thing taking on responsibility, and good on us all for spending hours keeping the world going around. But we end up being SO serious, putting so much pressure on ourselves and others. What if it didn’t matter, just for a bit? Giggling already, thinking of the odd things you’ll all be adventuring into this week… have fun!!

Snoring….. who me??

I’m a snorer. And when I say that at social gatherings, a lot of husbands start laughing and nudging their wives, so I guess I’m not the only one?! Like with everything in life, when you start being open about your flaws and problems, others relax and feel that they’re OK with being human, too.

I’ve nearly made it into a positive: it must mean that I’m so relaxed when I sleep, that I really let go of any turmoil of the day. But then, another thought creeped in: I recalled a dental specialist I chatted to years ago, telling he could see by looking at you, if you snore… Oh. That’s a bit creepy, like the Christmas song where Santa “sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake…”.

Anyway, unfortunately I didn’t dig deeper back then, finding out HOW he knew (the specialist, not Santa!). So, in my mind it has grown bigger: this image of him checking out people in the supermarket queue, at meetings and in conversation. What is it, he’s looking for?? What’s the signature, snorer cue? I create answers like “a loose, hanging double chin”, heavy overweight – or simply diagnosing a loose jaw, which leads back to my pretend “you’re so relaxed, even when you sleep”.

A (female) colleague of mine was also very open with her snoring. In fact, their whole family snores big time, kids and all – imagining the roof shaking and nearly blowing off at night-time. At some work event with room sharing, her room buddy next morning confessed that it had been so unbearable, that she had escaped the room, finding a couch or cupboard somewhere to spend the rest of the night in. Behold… she only left after recording the repetitive, extensive sound for a few minutes. What a great laugh for all of us in the taxi that morning, including the perpetrator.

So, we are a few females open about our snoring – but to keep some self-image of femininity, I have convinced myself that mine is only a slightly (charming even?) extensive breathing. And I truly value my husband not entertaining with it at dinner parties, or (oh shivers!) recording it. So… some work to do still on the vanity I didn’t think I had. Touché.

Well, I better (wo)man up and chase down the dental specialist and get the honest truth of how he knows a snorer by a glance… Am I ready to face his answer?? “I can see by your (47 yrs. old) loose, hanging skin under your chin, that you are a snorer”. Arrrrgh….

Two learnings for me today then: I may be open about my flaws, but I’m still so vain. And while we’re on the subject of flaws and being human, the second learning: continue asking for the facts, to save you the worry. Hadn’t seen snoring coming as my opening blog for 2018 – well, that just sets us up for an exciting, unpredictable year, doesn’t it? Happy New Year all.

No fluff

There is no fluff in living from your heart. It is challenging, takes bravery and will be met with disdain. Because it provokes people meeting a person taking off masks, diluting and dissolving labels. When our auto setting is hiding behind arguments, creating conflict or placing blame.

World peace doesn’t come from sitting around saying nice things to each other. It comes from all of us taking responsibility for our own shit, dealing with it to the best of our ability, and not just passing it on to the next person.

Results come from contrasts and challenges overcome – and results is not a dirty word (for those of you scrunching your noses right now thinking results only belong in the business world). We are all getting results all the time – whether you like your results or not, is a whole-new kettle of fish. Let’s call it feedback.

Living from your heart only works if you’re getting the results you are planning for at the same time – otherwise it’s just another convenient label for hiding and letting yourself off the hook.

So, did you get the outcomes you wanted this year? If not, what are YOU gonna change right now to get different outcomes next year? A little suggestion may be owning your own stuff, accepting you are both peace and turmoil all at once. Balance and harmony can’t come from positives only – we need the contrast to balance things out.

You owning your stuff will take us one step closer to world peace – through you, your relations, your teams, your community and who knows how far it will travel? Happy holidays. And may your heart be with you in 2018.

How do you brush your teeth?

Everything we do is a strategy. A simple example: we have a strategy for brushing our teeth: some steps leading to an outcome. If we want a different result from our teeth brushing, we need to change a step – and possibly get inspiration from someone getting the results we want. So, how do you brush your teeth? All we do is a strategy.

Brushing your teeth differently may be setting the bar a bit low. So, let’s look for something meatier that you would like to do better in 2018. What is your strategy for that right now?

Let’s say it’s your relationship with those close to you (excellent choice as we lead into lots of Christmas events with family and the usual suspects, right??). What’s your strategy for relationships, “how do you do relationships”?

Are you getting the results you want in your relationships? It’s such an easy one to spot – because if we feel close, respected, allowing each other to be who we are, being the bigger person and allowing each other space and support, the relationships blossom. We know when they are not working. And it’s not your fault, or someone else’s fault. It’s just feedback that you’re not allowing each other yet to be yourselves – feeling enough, feeling loved, feeling we matter – in the way that each one of you want to be seen.

Wow, we got deep quickly, didn’t we? You may have heard this one before: treat others as you would like to be treated. It’s NOT true. The ultimate truth is treating others as THEY would like to be treated. And because we’re all different, it takes a lot of listening and curiosity to start understanding how to really make each other light up.

So, how are you doing relationships? Being aware that it’s not something happening TO us, but that we have a choice in how we do it, is so powerful. We could stop right here. Place that thought in the front of your mind and heart over the Christmas holidays, and things will start changing for you in surprising and awesome ways.

If you need to change something about your strategy, look for role models who are already getting the results you want. Try out some of their steps, because as soon as you change ONE little step in your current strategy, things cannot end up as they normally do, something will change. If it’s not enough or the right direction, do another change and keep it going for a while.

Some of you may feel cheated, that you can’t blame it on others. It may be a struggle to realise. But, when you give in to that belief, it is AWESOME, because when all we do is a strategy, we have the CHOICE to look for different results and doing things differently.

Personally, I’ve done a lot of work this year on “how I do playful” – and I’m getting to a pretty good strategy that works for me. And coming to the end of the year, I’ll also want to shout a deep felt thank you for reading, applying and enjoying the Joy Hearts messages during the year. I love the feedback I’m getting from so many of you, it’s such a joy inspiring your journeys, in whatever way we connect and grow.

So, what’s your thing to work on for YOU this coming year? And if nothing pops up, just enjoy brushing your teeth this coming week…

The people we meet…

I meet many different combinations of people on my weekend jog in the bush. Fascinating to observe them: the running clubs pacing through, the parents taking their kids on a little adventure, mid-life men catching up (meaning one of them talking about how amazing he is at work, the others barely adding a word).

And then the best team I’ve met recently: two young boys. Clearly friends. Very different in nature, but having each other’s backs. Sharing, asking, taking turn in taking lead, truly enjoying each other’s company – but being much too young to really realise it, simply having a good time.

Years ago, we travelled NZ in a campervan, and our back then young girls had some trouble with friendships. Sitting talking in the back of the campervan, I remember drawing my “friendship ancestry tree” to my kids. While mapping it out, realising the close friends I’ve had through my life. Some were there for a period of time, we enjoyed each other’s company, stretched each other and made it all feel safe. Like the two boys in the bush.

Sometimes you moved on in life. Painful if one was ready to move before the other – and a painful clash that I couldn’t even remember the root cause of. Some of us simply moved to different places, and the contact ebbed out. But meeting again decades later, we could still pick up the conversation as if it never stopped, because we shared so much and had something in common, like the two boys in the bush.

Some friends were new. Popping up randomly, and hitting a sweet spot that simply had to be explored. And as the friendship lines evolved on the piece of paper, it was fascinating to see how the match in values, energy level, interest or view on life became more profound. Whereas the early childhood friendships may simply have been based on the fact that you lived next door.

Sharing this story with our daughters, in the back of the campervan, hopefully gave them some sense of it being OK. That friendships change over time. Some hurt, some last – and some are easy, like the friendship of the two boys in the bush.

Which friendships will you cherish this week?!!

Goodbye Superwoman

Are you a fixer? Working so hard to fix the world and those around you? Aha!!! We may just have spotted another Superwoman in action.

This week we ran a workshop where saying Goodbye to Superwoman resonated. So many successful, talented, good-hearted women working so hard both at home and at work, keeping the wheels turning and fixing it all. Especially, fixing those around us.

What if your true success doesn’t come by fixing? What if it’s instead letting go of the idea that you can, and that you have the answer, to fixing all?

You may have heard of some weird, far-away-land women who are not really PART of their family, not sitting down having a great laugh with them, not enjoying being present. I’m SURE it won’t be you, but you may have heard of someone like it??!! Well I know one: it was me for decades. And she still pops in on occasions – because she’s so familiar, and gets a lot done.

What if you practised saying Goodbye to her? Goodbye to the idea that you are the one with the answer, the one with the right schedule for how-life-should-be-lived-around-here? And instead started BEING. Much less doing, much more being.

It may just happen that you start joining in on a joke, because you were actually listening enough to hear it. That you have a laugh, because you were actually present, not in your head planning the next thing to get done…

Ouch…. I know a lot of you recognise this. Are you up for the challenge? To take the journey of finding out what true happiness could look like. What true success is to you. To start becoming the person you really would love to spend time with – not the commander-in-chief keeping all at safe distance through being busy.

Not fixing the world and those around us. But accepting that we ourselves are FULL of contrasts, accepting all of us and start becoming truly powerful? Goodbye Superwoman, hello real you.

Message me to hear more, for those of you ready to join the group starting this December. To not be finishing 2018 feeling the same way as now (or worse). But to finish 2018 feeling different, and already seeing changes around you. We would love to have you join us. To a week and a year of BEING!