LA VIE ADORABLE
LA VIE ADORABLE
I've always been what you may call a "Francophile", which means that I've always been drawn to everything French: The language, the food, the culture, the style ... the "joie de vivre" that the French are so good at.
I don’t really know why I got this fascination to begin with. I guess I just heard the French language and fell in love with it, and then I watched some French TV-series and movies and read more about France in various books, and for some reason the French way of living just appealed to me more than anything else, and I dreamed of living there.
MY INTRODUCTION TO THE FRENCH LIFE-STYLE
And then I got a French friend. I was 14 years old at the time, and a French girl came to my hometown during the summer holidays to visit her father, who was working in Norway at the time. She came with her mother and younger brother, and by chance we met and became friends.
At 14 she already had more style than any Norwegian girl I knew (including myself). Her mother was effortlessly elegant and relaxed, and very down to earth.
They were living examples of all that I wanted to be. They were not trying to live up to anybody's expectations or pretended to be something they were not. They were just confident in their own skin and wanted everything in life to be of good quality, whether it was food, clothing or spare time activities.
I learned a lot from my French friend. I observed her and her mother in their day-to-day activities, - the way they talked, the way they conducted themselves. And I knew I wanted to be more like them.
They only stayed for 2 brief summer months, but we kept in touch through frequent letters, and this contributed greatly to my knowledge of the French language, which I'll be forever grateful for.
My longing for France didn't exactly diminish with this experience. I felt so drawn to the French lifestyle, because it seemed to be the perfect fit for me and my personality.
I waited for many years before I was able to get myself to France to see my dear friend Brigitte again and be able to breathe in the French air at last!
When I was 24, my friend was getting married and invited me to her wedding. Quelle joie! I could tell you a lot about that trip, and I'll come back to that later, but long story short: The 2 weeks I spent there rooted France firmly in my heart forever.
Going back home after that trip felt strange, as if life had just played me a trick. As much as I love my country, I felt like I had finally gotten a glimpse of Heaven, only to be rejected at the gate. The French lifestyle had gotten under my skin, and I knew I’d go back some day.
I guess my friendship with Brigitte and the atmosphere I had sucked in during my visit to her country, influenced me in such a profound way that I had gradually adopted a French attitude to life. At least the "French light" version. It had become a natural part of who I was and the way I lived.
So how exactly did I live «the French lifestyle»?
- I had a very relaxed attitude towards life.
- I had confidence in myself and my own capabilities.
- I had a positive body image.
- I enjoyed good food.
- I exercised without really thinking about it.
- I had a great social life, with lots of friends around me.
- There was plenty of fun and laughter, and social activities
like going to a café, the movies or a concert.
- I engaged in great conversations with my friends.
- I was very active.
- I engaged in activities that stimulated my intelligence (like reading).
- I engaged in creative activities, especially writing and Arts & Crafts.
- I sang in a choir and listened to music a lot.
In short: I really, really enjoyed my life!
And I was slim! Effortlessly. I didn't have to think about it at all! No dieting. No strict exercise regimes. No depriving myself of good food. No stress!
I WAS A SLIM (AND QUITE CHIC) WOMAN
When I was in my twenties, I never had to think twice about what I put into my mouth. I was always slim, n'importe quoi! I enjoyed moving my body and did a lot of walking, running, cycling, skiing, hiking, etc.
In short: I was very active. I had a flat stomach, and I was in the best shape of my life. I had no trouble finding clothes that fit me perfectly, and going shopping was fun and exciting!
I actually had a great style at that time. I knew which colors and shapes looked good on me, and I enjoyed finding clothes that not 9 out of 10 other girls were wearing.
Looking back now, to my life the way it was in my twenties, I can see that I really lived "the French way" back then.
So what happened?
Well, I guess LIFE happened. Somewhere along the way, things slowly changed. After a few wonderful and happy years back in my hometown, our group of friends dissolved. One by one we moved on.
Some went away to start a higher education; some left because they got a new job. Others left because they wanted to go back home.
Soon, I felt that it was time for me to move on, too. I wanted to go to college, like so many others.
This naturally meant a change of environment, and the next year was in many ways quite challenging for me. I went through a period where I felt very lonely and suddenly lost all confidence in myself, and other issues became more pressing than keeping up the French lifestyle.
However, things did improve. I found new friends and had a much better time, but I had in some ways lost myself along the way, and I felt that I had to try and blend in with the people around me.
This feeling got rather rooted in me, and the next years of my life was more about blending in than being true to the person I felt that I was deep inside, and it became harder for me to live the way I really wanted.
I guess I wasn't confident enough to "stand my ground", so to speak. So I blended in and tried not to provoke anyone. The "French lifestyle" sizzled away...
And after college I got a job. Met a man. Got married. Got 2 wonderful kids. In short: I had a good life in many ways, and looking back on it now, I wouldn't have been without those years. They gave me some of the best experiences in my life, first of all giving birth to and raising 2 great children, who to this very day are my pride and joy.
And all these years, I was slim. I even stayed slim after I'd given birth to 2 kids, and of course I was very pleased with that.
But then, just as I turned 40, something happened that made me gain almost 20 kilos of weight.
FROM SLIM AND CHIC TO THE NOT QUITE SO CHARMING VERSION OF ME.
So what was it that suddenly made me gain this weight?
Well, I had an accident. I got a head injury.
Now, you wouldn't immediately think that an incident like that would make me gain weight. But the fact is that the accident had physical consequences that forced me to be less active for a while, because of heavy migraine, dizziness and other symptoms.
If you want to learn more, I’ve written about it all in my article “Coming Out Of The Closet With PCS. Could You Possibly Have It Too?”
But the biggest consequence was the stress. The stress around not being able to live the way I'd always lived: Physically active and enjoying life.
Slowly, without even noticing it at first, I started putting on weight.
Have you ever experienced that, - how things slowly change over time, without you noticing it?
Well, that happened to me, and after a while, I realized that I had become overweight. Not obese, but I definitly wasn't slim anymore!
It was devastating to me! I suddenly didn't like the woman staring back at me in the mirror anymore. I started to cover myself up in baggy clothes to hide my tummy, and I didn't even realize that it just made me look even bigger.
I didn't like to be photographed anymore. I didn't like to shop for clothes. I didn't enjoy eating the way I did before.
I was constantly thinking about the fact that I had become a version of me that I didn't like. And it really, really stressed me out.
This went on for years, until I realized that I couldn't go on like that. I wanted my life back! That's when I came across several books that helped me shift my thinking.
I realized that I was good enough just the way I was, but I also learned that it was all up to me to make the changes I needed in my life.
I've written and talked quite a lot about mindset and how your thoughts create your reality, so I won't repeat that here right now. Let me just say that I started to make some changes that slowly put me back on track, back to the woman I wanted to be. And the main shift was changing my thoughts.
Many years had passed at this point, and I was no longer consciously thinking about "the French lifestyle". I just knew that I wasn't living in accordance with who I really was, anymore. And that had to change.
FINDING MY WAY BACK
I've spent almost 2 decades sort of fighting my way back to a "normal" life after the head injury. But in so many ways I've been happier this last decade than I was for quite a few years, because I learned how to shift my thinking and understood that I had to start living in accordance with who I really am again.
But for a long time, I wasn’t really sure how I could do that. I felt sort of restless and a little bit "out of place", and I wasn't quite able to establish WHY. I’ve had a vision of what I want, and I've been moving towards that, little by little, but I've been searching for MY way.
And then, suddenly, I had an epiphany:
"I have to go back to living the French lifestyle again!"
Suddenly everything fell back in place for me. My mood instantly got a boost!
I need to go back to living «the French lifestyle» again because that’s the lifestyle that has always felt natural to me and my personality. That’s the way I lived in my twenties, and that’s when I felt good in my skin and was at my healthiest in every way.
So that’s what I’m doing.
Even though I’m not living in France, I’m finding ways to live «the French lifestyle» where I am, and it’s not difficult at all.
And I want to teach other women "the French lifestyle", too. I want to teach YOU how to live "comme une francaise". Because I truly believe it can be life-changing for you, as it has been for me.
I hereby declare:
From this day forward, my focus will be on
sharing with you everything I know about
the French lifestyle,
and make sure we both live with as much "joie de vivre"
as humanly possible!
So if you want to learn more about how you can live «the French way», I’ll be more than happy to teach you step by step how you can make it happen! Even if you don’t live in France, it’s not difficult at all. It’s a way of living, an attitude towards life, that you can incorporate wherever you are.
Why not start right now?
- Sign up for my newsletter so you don't miss out on future blog posts
about the French Lifestyle!
- Make sure you don't miss out on my next blog post: "12 Ways You Can Become Slim & Chic Like A French Woman Without Even Breaking A Sweat»!
- Join my community The Sisterhood of Female Life Designers on Facebook!
Having a community of likeminded women to support you
and share your thoughts with, is absolutely GOLD! So join today!
When you join, you’ll get a downloadable version of The Female Life Designer’s Manifesto, which is a great way of getting into «the French way» of living right away!
And this is just the beginning!
We will study and go deep into all aspects of living «the French lifestyle», for sure. But slowly, with ease and elegance. Effortlessly! Comme une femme francaise!
If you enjoyed this blog post, feel free to leave a comment below and share it with someone else who might enjoy it, too!
Most people don't understand that all power lies within ourselves.
I didn't, either, until about a decade ago.
But now I know. For sure.
Our lives are not just a series of accidental happenings. Our outer circumstances are built directly or indirectly, innocently and usually unknowingly, but nevertheless inevitably, by groups of inner feelings.
These inner feelings constitute our moods, and our moods can be controlled by our thoughts. Of course, sometimes we just feel something, and we can't really explain where that feeling comes from, because it doesn't seem to be based in any reason or fact, so you may argue that there was no active thought that caused the feeling to rise.
But I believe that what we feel is closely connected to some thought or inner belief that we have on a regular basis, maybe without being aware of it, and that inner belief affects our feelings. At some point, tiny seeds have been planted in our minds, by our parents, our teachers, our religious leaders or other people around us - or by ourselves - and these seeds grow in our subconscious and become beliefs.
Our acts spring from these secret seeds that we have planted or allowed to be planted. Our subconscious mind is - like I've mentioned here on my blog before - like a very powerful cannon. But this cannon is not like a regular cannon. It's constructed on the principle of a boomerang, which means that every "shot" (or thought or word) fired from it, comes back to us.
And it doesn't come back alone. It returns filled with results, realities, actual occurences. Whether these realities are destructive or constructive, what you want or what you don't want, depends completely on which direction you keep your "cannon" (your thoughts, your words) directed most of the time.
That's why it's so important to be aware of your dominant thoughts and be careful about which words you speak.
Because you give power to the thoughts you keep thinking on a regular basis, and to the words you keep saying over and over again. They affect your mood, your inner feelings, your beliefs.
So if your thoughts and words are mostly about worries that you have, I believe that what you will experience in your life will most likely be the things you most worry about. In fact, this is not just something I believe. I have experienced it, over and over and over again in my own life. Until I understood what I was doing, and started to change my thoughts.
Because, just as your anxious or negative thoughts affect your outer circumstances, so do your constructive and positive thoughts. If you build up a constructive mood, your inner forces are directed toward what you want, and if you keep this mood and make sure it becomes your overall feeling, nothing on earth can prevent you from eventually getting what you want or something better.
So control your mind. Be aware of your thoughts. But bear in mind that it's not so much what you say, do or pretend that will get you what you want. It's what you FEEL.
Whatever keeps bubbling up in your life on a constant basis is the fruit of the feelings you've entertained in your subconscious over a long period of time.
You are the master of your own life. But you need to recognize this responsibility as your own and stop blaming your circumstances or other people or "life happenings".
If it's difficult for you to see this, that your outer world, your life as a whole and the sum total of your experiences are the massed result of your own moods or feelings - just leave it alone for a while. Let it rest. Let the thought mature on you.
But just for the fun of it: Take a look back at your life, or take at look at the life of someone you know, and reflect on what your situation or their situation looks like, and what seems to have been the general attitude in yourself or that other person over a period of time, which may have given the results that you see.
That's all for now. I'll see you soon.
If you liked this blog post, feel free to comment below or share it with someone else. Thank you!
Photo by Elly Fairytale from Pexels
August 13th 2019
If you've been following my progress and have been wondering why I haven't updated this page in a while, it's really quite simple: It's NOT because the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge hasn't worked for me, because it has, - but I'm currently trying out a new way of eating, and have been recommended not to do any particular exercise during the first month.
I'll try to tell you more about it after I've finished this month, when I've had a chance to see what kind of effect it has on me.
I'm trying to change my lifestyle for the better, and also lose some weight, and I don't expect the results to be immediate, so I feel it will have a bigger impact if I try it first and then tell you about it.
I want to give value to you, and to be able to do that, I need to test out things first in my own life and see how it works for me, and then I can teach you what I did and how you can succeed, too.
Makes sense, right?
I hope you'll keep following me, and please feel free to leave me a comment or ask any questions through my "Contact Me" page.
Until next time: Namasté!
Honestly: I don't watch much TV. Because I like to watch a programme or a film or a documentary from start till finish without a 5 minutes' commercial break every 10 minutes. But despite this, I've lately become a fan of a few TV-shows that give me enormous joy, and I could watch them for hours if possible, because they're such a great inspiration to me. And I've been asking myself: What is it about these shows that inspire me to a degree that I don't mind spending hours watching them?
From wreck to beauty
The answer is simple: They're all about creating beauty out of a seemingly hopeless "canvas", or from what might be called a "wreck". Whether it's a house that looks like it's ready for condemnation, or a garden that looks like nothing can grow there, or a person who's hiding behind an armor of make-up, false eyelashes, extreme outfits and sometimes even - quite literally - a mask, simply because he or she has lost their self-confidence ...
To watch how they're all lovingly taken care of by these very competent people, - interior designers, architects, contractors, realtors, beauticians, fashion designers, hairdressers, stylists, landscape architects, gardeners ... people who see these various (officially- or self-claimed) "wrecks" for what they really are: Buildings, gardens and people with great potential. They see the natural beauty hidden underneath the seemingly unappealing or unattractive surface, and then lovingly, little by little, make sure the natural features are emphasized in such a way that the owners also learn to appreciate them and don't want to hide them anymore. To watch buildings, properties and people rise as the bird Phoenix from the ashes and - after careful restoration - stand before us in all their new-found confidence and glory ... That's so wonderfully inspiring!
Transformation from within
I believe that TV-shows like the "Fixer Uppers" with Chip and Joanna Gaines and "Property Brothers" with Drew and Jonathan Scott, are really important. Because it's not just about fancy interiors and cosmetic changes. On one hand, Chip and Joanna Gaines, Drew and Jonathan Scott (and other people who have similar TV-shows) are highly professional in their craftmanship and really know what they're doing, and they create truly amazing changes to houses that seem beyond salvation. But more importantly: They're actually transforming people's lives in a significant way.
And shows like "100 % Hotter", where people go through what they call a "make-under", because it's more about "dressing down" or toning down an extreme way of showing up in the world, and helping individuals appreciate and embrace their natural selves... It's the same with them. The team of stylists, beauticians and hairdressers help people find a new confidence and pride in who they are, and help them find a style that emphasizes their natural beauty and make them feel fabulous. How great is that!?
This is important work. This is transformational. If you've ever thought about these TV-shows as superficial and shallow and all about "looks", then think again. It's not about that at all. It's not only about designing a beautiful interior, or about making everyone look like a "super-model". It's about releasing tension, stress and chaos in people's lives. It's about giving them their life back. It's about giving them their self-confidence back. It's about joy, happiness and all good things.
The Female Life Designer
That's the kind of contribution I want to give to the world. It's becoming more and more clear to me. With my education as an interior designer, my skills in arts & crafts, my experience as an entrepreneur and as a coach, combined with my passion for all good things in life, I want to inspire, motivate and empower other women to create a beautiful life for themselves on all levels. To be confident in their own skin. To stand tall and walk with their heads held high. I want to inspire, motivate and empower you to be all that you can be.
Because this is important.
So I'm on a mission to serve you, and at the same time keep designing MY life the way I truly want it. That's why I call myself The Female Life Designer.
I hope you'll keep following me on this journey. I hope you'll join my tribe! Who knows where it might lead us?
If you enjoyed this post, please feel free to leave a comment below or send me a note through the "Contact Me" page, and also share this post with someone you know. And you're of course welcome to check out my Facebook page. See you soon!
Do you feel stuck in your past? Is it sort of "haunting" you and keeping you from doing the things you really want to do? Maybe you're not even aware of how much your past is affecting your decisions. You just feel that things are never going your way, or that you're constantly struggling with certain issues or situations that keep occurring in your life again and again, no matter what you do.
I don't know what your past looks like. Maybe you've experienced neglect or abuse. Maybe you've struggled with poor health or severe illness all your life. Maybe you've always been poor. Maybe you never did well in school and nobody ever believed that you could ever accomplish anything, and maybe they even said it to your face so you lost confidence in yourself and it became a belief deep within you.
Or maybe you did have everything going for you: A good upbringing and a happy childhood with lots of opportunities. Maybe you did well in school and got a good education. Maybe you found a great job and has had a certain amount of success in your life.
And still, you're not happy. You feel that there must be something more, but you feel stuck with what you have and can't really put your finger on what's wrong, either. And you feel bad because you can't make yourself love the way things are, even though everything's "perfect" and other people kind of envy you and think that you've really made a good life for yourself. Complaining isn't your thing, and it wouldn't be proper, because hey, you have a good life, don't you...? Don't you!? So what more do you want!?
Either way, - a past full of struggle or a past full of opportunities: You feel stuck. You feel that your past is the foundation that determines how the rest of your life will look like. Your path has been laid. Your past experiences and conditions have made you into who you are, and there's nothing you can do about it. It's just the way things are. This is what life has given you, and you just have to deal with it and do the best that you can with it.
Well, I'm telling you that's not how it has to be.
You're not your past
Whether you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth or not: You're not your past. Because what you experienced in your past was a result of the programming you were exposed to by your peers: your parents and extended family, your teachers, your religious leaders, the society you were brought up in. They've all programmed you with their own beliefs about life and how things should be, and eventually these beliefs became your own. You've learned rules to follow, you've been told that you should act in this or that way to make sure you fit in with the rest of your community and not upset or provoke anyone by being different. And maybe you've been told that you should be grateful for what you have (no matter how little or how much that is) and not strive for more, because it wouldn't be appropriate. Or maybe they've even told you that you're not worthy of more. Who are you to think that you deserve anything more?
You are worthy and you can have it all
But guess what: You ARE worthy of more! In fact, you're worthy of all good things! And the best of all is that you can have it! You can have it all! It's totally achievable!
I don't know if you believe in God or the Universe or a source energy that's in all of us, - or whatever it is that you believe. And it doesn't really matter. What I want you to know is that whatever you believe, whether you're religious or spiritual or an agnostic: YOU have the power to create your life the way you want it. You and only you.
How is that?
Your mind is like a cannon acting like a boomerang
What you experience in your life is a direct result of what you think about day in and day out. Your thoughts become your reality. You get what you focus on, whether it's positive or negative. Your mind is like a cannon, loaded with thoughts, only it works like a boomerang and sends back to you whatever it is you're projecting out into the universe. So if you want only good things to come to you, you must stop sending out all those negative thoughts and start projecting only positive, happy and prosperous thoughts instead.
I'm telling you: If you really understood the effect your thoughts have on your reality, you'd never want to think a negative thought again!
"Whether you think you can or you think you can't, you're right."
I'm sure you've heard this quote from Henry Ford. And it really is as simple as that. If you keep thinking that you're not good enough or wise enough or not worthy ... or that you're not good with money or that you're not educated enough to get a better paid job, or that your health is preventing you from living the life you want, or that other circumstances like your family, your kids or society - or whatever it is that you're thinking - are preventing you from fulfilling your dreams ... then that's how it will continue to be. For sure.
Because you simply can't think a negative thought and expect a positive result.
Makes sense, doesn't it?
If you think something's holding you back or keeping you from doing what you want ... well, I'm telling you: It's all in your mind. It's not real.
You can choose what to think
So my advise to you today is this: Start thinking positive thoughts from this moment forward.
And when you do, I promise you that you'll soon start noticing a positive effect in your life. And you're in total control here! Because you can choose to think positive thoughts, no matter what life throws at you. Nobody else can decide what you should think. Only if you let them. And whatever your past has been: It doesn't have to be your tomorrow. It doesn't have to be your TODAY. And today is really all we've got. So make the decision today that you'll start thinking positive thoughts and only focus on what you DO want, and not on what you don't want. I promise you: Your future self will thank you for it!
If you want to hear more about this topic, I suggest you watch the episode I broadcasted on my YouTube channel a while back. You can watch it below.
If you liked this blog post and / or the video, please feel free to leave a comment below or follow my blog.
Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels
July 10th 2019
I've completed week 7 of the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge, with some modifications, and I'm happy that I've actually come this far. That was not obvious when I first started out!
This week I'm on holiday, and even though I could have continued doing my work-outs while I'm away, I've given myself permission to hit the pause-button this week. Why? Because I need to be able to relax completely this week and not put any pressure on myself about anything.
I know I'll pick up the routine again when I return home. I'm not saying that you should follow my example. If you know that dropping your exercise routine (whatever that is) will make it very hard for you to pick it up again when the holiday is over, then I strongly suggest that you stick with it no matter what.
Because it's good for you, and if you're in a good flow now and has found a good routine, then by all means: Keep going! Consistency is the key to success, whether we're talking exercise or business or whatever. So you go, girl!
July 17th 2019
I'm back from my trip, but I still have a week's holiday, so I'm still kind of in holiday mode. However, I did pick up my Yoga Burn routine on Monday like I said I would, so now I've started Week 8.
But I found it really hard on Monday morning and had to modify a lot. Also, as I was doing a "downward Dog", I felt something snap in my heel, like if something went out of place.
So today I didn't do the routine, because I don't know if I should. Maybe I'll do it this evening instead, or at least a modified version.
I feel that I've learned a lot about yoga during the first 7 weeks that I've been following this program. So I can always keep doing it, but maybe just put together the moves that I feel work well for me, and not necessarily follow the exact routine that Zoe is doing this week.
Yeah, I think that's what I'll do, and then move on to Week 9 and see what the challenge is then. I really want to see this through and do all the 12 weeks, even though I've only done 1 round of exercise per day, 3 days a week, and not 2 and 3 rounds like I'm supposed to do in this challenge.
It's challenging enough for me to do 1 round x 3, so I just have to keep doing that until I find that I can take it a step further. Consistency is key, like I've said before. Better this way than nothing at all!
How are YOU doing?
Feel free to share it with me by sending me a note through the "Contact Me" page.
If you're one of the women who's constantly struggling with money and don't know how to turn your situation around, I want to share with you some practical advise. Because I can really relate to your struggle. I've been there myself, and not that long ago, either. But let me first share with you a little bit about my background:
I grew up as the youngest of 6 children in a small town on the west-coast of Norway in the 1960s and '70s. I lived in what you might call a middle-class family. My father worked for the railway, and my mother was a housewife for most of my childhood and teenage years. My parents were the best parents I could ever get. They were very supportive and kind and I had a great childhood. But they taugth me what they had learned when they grew up, like "You should go to school, get a proper education, and then find a decent job". And I often heard that "money doesn't grow on trees" and that as a good Christian girl I shouldn't strive to get rich, because that was .... well, not good.
So I did what most other girls at that time did: I went to school and worked hard to get good grades. Then I found myself a job and started a family. And I settled for that for quite a few years (more than 20, actually). Because we had a good life, really, - we had a good economy (well, fairly good anyway), and we had our own house and 2 wonderful children... And my husband was a kind man, and everything was OK, really...
But I came to a point in my life where I was feeling more and more that I was living my life on other people's terms. My life wasn't in accordance with who I really am. So I made some tough decisions. I ended up divorcing my husband, and I moved to a new town where there were only part-time jobs or vacancies available when I arrived there. I was even unemployed for a long time.
So I really struggled with money, and when I finally got a job, I wasn't earning enough to cover my monthly expenses. I lived paycheck to paycheck, and I really, really struggled. I ended up using credit-cards to keep my head above water. And after a while I found myself in a situation where I had maxed out all my credit-cards and there was nothing left but debt.
So I felt like I was in a swamp that I couldn't see any way out of. I tried a lot of things to turn the situation around. I applied for lots and lots of jobs. I looked on the Internet to see if there were any solutions there. But for a very long time, I couldn't find anything that could get me out of that situation and move me forward.
Until one day when I came across some really sound advice on the Internet that actually helped me turn my situation around. So I want to share that with you, but first I want to tell you about the 5 biggest mistakes women make that keep them struggling with money and never living the life they truly want. I'll start with Mistake # 5 and finish with the biggest mistake at the end.
Biggest mistake # 5: Emotional spending.
What do I mean by that?
Well, you know when you're feeling sad or angry and that nothing's going the way you want it in your life? You never have enough money to go on a vacation or buy something that costs a little bit more money than what you normally spend ... And you feel so frustrated and you say to yourself: "Damn it! I have to be able to do something to be happy! I should be able to treat myself to something nice now and then!" And then you go out and spend money on some new clothing, maybe some expensive shoes, some flowers, chocholate, a magazine or two ... or three... You know: The whole package, just to make you feel good.
And of course, it does make you feel good, there and then... But the thing is: When you go shopping in that state of mind, when you're either sad or angry, you probably end up spending a lot more money than you should. And you're probably using credit-cards to pay for it. Right? I know, because I've been there. Believe me: I've done a lot of emotional shopping in my life! And, like I said: It probably makes you feel good there and then, but for me - and I think maybe that's the case for you as well, - after a while I regret the spending. And because I used credit-cards to pay for it, I also end up deeper in debt than I was before. Right? So the problem will only escalate.
So my advice to you is this: Never go out shopping when you're feeling emotional, whether you're angry or sad or whatever. Because you will only set yourself up for failure and get even deeper into trouble. So resist that urge to go shopping when you're emotional.
This picture by unknown creator is licenced under CC BY-NC-ND
Biggest mistake # 4: Making financial decisions out of guilt.
Many women have a tendency to feel guilty when other people are in trouble, and they want to help out. They feel that they have to contribute to a difficult financial situation even if they can't afford it. Maybe you're like that, too. It can be a family member or a friend who needs money, and you feel that you just have to give it to them, even if you can't afford it.
I suggest you stop doing that, if that's something you have a tendency to do. Because you'll only risk you own financial success just because you feel guilty. Of course seeing a friend or a family member in dispair is devastating every time, so of course we want to help. But you know when you're on a plane and they go through the safety instructions, they tell you to put your own oxygen-mask on before helping others? Well, that's exactly the same principle you should be following in your financial life. Because you can't help anyone else if you're falling off a cliff yourself financially. That makes sense, don't you think?
So my strong advice to you is this: Don't give or lend out money to anyone else if you can't afford it, and if you can't be absolutely sure to get that money back before you need it yourself. You might never get it back, right? Then what?
Biggest mistake # 3: Trying to keep up with everybody else and surrounding yourself with big spenders.
If you're one of those women who keep comparing yourself to other people, like your colleagues, your neighbors, your friends, - again, you're just setting yourself up for failure. Because if you keep doing that, you'll just constantly feel that you don't have enough. So instead of comparing yourself with a lifestyle that isn't yours, you should be comparing yourself to yourself. Look at how far you actually have come, and think about what it is that you want for yourself in the future.
It's a dangerous trap when you keep comparing yourself to others. Because you don't know how they manage to have that lifestyle. In many cases people live on loans or use credit-cards to support their luxurious lifestyle, and that's not the way to go about it. It only leads to financial disaster. So make sure you stop comparing yourself to others. Focus on what it is that YOU want. And focus on getting out of debt, if you have any and you're struggling with that.
Regarding what I said about big spenders:
Maybe you've heard the saying that you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with? So if you're spending a lot of your time with people who are big spenders, and who live on loans and credit-cards to maintain a luxurios lifestyle, then that is something you should do whatever you can to avoid in the future. Stop surrounding yourself with people who make you spend a lot of money too, because that's most likely what happens. There is most likely a certain pressure to fit in, and we mirror other people's behavior whether we realize it or not. So don't fall into that trap. Try to set an example. Try to focus on living within your means.
Of course I'm not saying that you shouldn't strive for a lifestyle where you can afford to buy things without having to think about what they cost. On the contrary: I think you should try to get in a situation where you are that wealthy. But for the moment, when you're not, you should try to focus on setting an example: that this is a kind of spending you're not willing to keep up with. And make sure that you just focus on yourself and not everybody else.
Biggest mistake # 2: Feeling intimidated by personal finance and leaving your finances to someone else.
We've never learned about personal finances in school, or how to deal with money. What many women have been told, however, is that we should leave our personal finances to some man in our life: A father, a brother, or a husband - or some financial adviser at the bank. So if you're one of those women who have done that, - you've relied on some man in your life to take care of your money (and that man has been a husband, most likely): STOP DOING THAT!! Why? Because there's absolutely no guarantee that that man is going to stay in your life forever. Maybe he's already left you, for all I know, and that's why you're struggling. Because you've never been used to taking care of your money yourself. Anyways: If you do have a man in your life right now that you depend on: Stop depending on him! Because he might disappear out of your life in a jiffy.
I'm not trying to scare you or anything, but it's a fact: There's absolutely no guarantee that he'll stay in your life forever. He might disappear all of a sudden, either by death or divorce or imprisonment ... or even by war. So it's a dangerous trap to rely on someone else like that. Stop doing that.
There's also no guarantee that he's capable of taking care of money in a better way than you can, just because he's a man. He might end up ruining you both and you won't know anything about it before it's too late. So what then?
You're perfectly capable of taking care of your own money. In fact: You're the best person to take care of your money! Because you're the one who needs to make ends meet and should be in control of what comes in and what goes out of your bank account. You shouldn't leave that with anyone else. Especially if you're a single woman and don't have anyone else in your life that you share finances with, you should be in full control of your money. Don't leave that to your father or brother or some accountant.
You need to find a way to manage your money in a good way. You just have to learn it. It's not impossible. It's not even difficult! In fact: At the end of this blog post, I will tell you how you can get a system that will help you take control over your money in an easy and good way. But right now, let's move on to the # 1 biggest mistake women make that keep them struggling with money.
Biggest mistake # 1: Thinking that your financial future is out of your control.
This is a huge mistake. Because I'm telling you right now: Your financial future is 100 % in your control! But you have to choose to make your future better. If you're living a mediocre life right now or you're constantly struggling with money, then it's about time that you do something about it. Take responsibility. Decide that you're going to learn how you can manage your money in a good way, and then implement what you learn. And that is key. Because knowledge mean absolutely nothing if you don't implement it. Right? That's really a no-brainer, but I just want to make that perfectly clear.
Let me congratulate you!
Now you know a little bit more about the biggest mistakes women make that keep them struggling with money. You also know a little bit more about how you can avoid doing those mistakes yourself. That's a huge step in the right direction, and you have every possibility to actually start doing something about your financial situation. You can be proud of yourself for actually taking the time to read through this blog post. I know you probably have a lot on your plate, so I'm glad you took the time to read it.
How you can start taking control over your money today.
I strongly suggest that you make that decision now: That you will find a way to take care of your finances. You will learn how to do it, and you will stick with it and make sure you get the results that you want. You will make sure that you get the life that you truly want and deserve.
Because you deserve to have a life of abundance. A life where you don't have to worry about money. And if you're in a situation right now where you're struggling, here's what I want you to do:
# 1: Stop blaming yourself for this situation.
Yes, that's right: Don't blame yourself for having "messed up" or for having made unwise decisions about money in the past. I'm sure you've done your best under the circumstances. And we never learned about this in school, so you can't blame yourself for not knowing what you didn't know, - right?
So stop the blaming, and just decide that you will make a change. Take responsibility for the situation and just decide to do better from now on.
# 2: Get clarity about your financial situation.
What does your financial situation actually look like?
This may seem difficult, but it's really not. You just need to write down what your income is and what your monthly expenses are, and not leave anything out. How much debt do you have? What is your monthly down-payment on that? Do you have any subscriptions or other monthly fees that you pay but have lost control over? And so on...
#3: Learn a system for managing your money, - one that is easy and that you can stick to.
This is where I want to tell you about my Money Managing Program, Fun & Easy Money Managing For Female Life Designers. It's a very easy and accessible program, because I know that if you're in a situation where you're struggling with money, you simply can't afford any expensive programs. So I've made it very affordable for you. It was originally priced at $99, but it's now only $39. In fact, I'll be bold enough to say that if you're struggling with money, you can't afford not to buy this program! It's based on systems that even millionaires use to control their finances. Heck, it's because of this and similar systems that many of them have become millionaires!
But you don't have to be a millionaire to make use of it. Anybody can use this system, because it's easy and yet so powerful. Remember: It's not the amount of money you start out with that decide whether or not you'll be rich. It's the way you manage it that matters. The habits of your day-to-day money management.
That's why I really hope you'll buy this program. It has the potential of becoming a life-changer for you, and you even get a 1 Year Money Back Guarantee should you not (after having implemented what you learn) be happy with the results you get from it.
Here's where you can buy the program Fun & Easy Money Managing For Female Life Designers . The link will take you to the product page where you can read a little bit about what's included in the program before you decide to buy it.
I wish you all the best for your new life, and hope you have found this blog post useful.
Photo by Gustavo Fring from Pexels
June 5th 2019
I'm in Week 3 of The Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge, and I'm keeping it up!
I'm doing the program 3 days a week now in the beginning, - on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. I have found that the best time for me is to do it in the morning, as soon as I get out of bed. Then I take a shower and eat my breakfast, and I feel very relaxed and good about having done some exercise before I go on with my chores for the day.
I'm currently on a 50 % sick leave from my day job, so on the days I have to get up early to go to work, I do the Yoga Burn program in the evening instead. Otherwise, it becomes a stress factor for me, and then I know I won't see it through.
So far, I haven't missed out on any of the scheduled work-outs. That's a definite choice I've made, because I know that if I just stick with it now, even if it feels hard, I will reach the point where I "just can't live without it". That's what I want, because I know I need this, and I really, really want to get my life back and get back into shape.
In the past, I've found it very difficult to stick with any work-out program, the main reason being that I've been struggling with fatigue for many years now, after an accident I had which left me with a post concussion syndrome.
But the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge seems to be the right thing for me, and I'm very happy about that. I'm actually looking forward to each session! Can't get any better than that, hey?
Follow my progress here, or even better: Join me in the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge and let's do this together!
(Please note: This link is my personal Affiliate link, so I may get a small commission if you join the challenge through this link.)
June 16th 2019
I've just finished Week 4 of The Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge.
I do struggle with my balance sometimes, and I sometimes have to modify the movements that Zoe is showing in the videos. But I still do the work-outs 3 times a week, and I feel more determined than ever to keep this up.
I don't see any huge changes in my body yet, but I feel the change. I feel a bit stronger, and I feel firmer, especially in my legs and booty.
I wish there were visible changes in my tummy, too, but I know that it will take some time before that happens. The tummy fat is the hardest to get rid of and is what I've been struggling with for years. So expecting it to change drastically in just 4 weeks with 15-20 minutes of work-out every second day, wouldn't be realistic.
So I'm telling myself that "a slow and steady pace wins the race", and I keep going.
This week I also put in some of the bonus work-out material at the end of my ordinary work-out session, which is the Total Body Band Burnout.
I liked it so much that I think I'll do that work-out in-between the others now and then in the weeks to come.
I still haven't done more than one round of each work-out so far, but my intention is to step it up a notch from now on. I'm looking forward to Week 5!
If you know you have to start exercising but still haven't made a decision about what kind of exercise you should do, I strongly suggest that you try The Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge.
(Please note: This link is my personal Affiliate link, so I may get a small commission if you join the challenge through this link.)
June 26th 2019
My 5th week of the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge is completed!
I must admit that I'm finding it a tad more challenging every week, but that's some of the idea with it, I guess. I find that I still have to modify some of the movements, especially those involving balance.
My hip's a little bit weaker on one side, so if I have to balance on one foot, I tend to fall out of it sooner when I'm balancing on my left foot. But I do my best, and I always go through the whole work-out, even if I have to modify here and there.
I'm sorry to say, though, that I missed one yoga day in week 5. This was because I had to go to my day job on Wednesday and therefor didn't find time to do yoga in the morning. And when I came home I was too tired and also got busy with other things.
I thought I'd catch up and do it the next day instead, but I didn't (for some reason). This was a disappointment, so I made sure I did the work-out on Friday, and I promised myself that I will definitely not skip any more days in the weeks to come.
It will be easier for me to have regularity in this over the next few weeks, because I've just started on my summer holidays now and can stick to my own schedule.
And I keep saying to myself that I have to stick with this, because if I start procrastinating or finding reasons not to do the work-outs on the days I've decided to do them, I will soon end up not seeing it through. THAT CAN NOT HAPPEN!
The purpose of sharing this with you here on this page is to make you my accountability partner. I would be happy if you would leave me an uplifting comment or write something to cheer me on. Because if I know for certain that someone is actually reading this and following my progress, it will be even more important to keep it up.
I'm considering putting some more exercise into my schedule in-between the Yoga Burn days, like some dancing and some more walking. I'll keep you posted on that!
I woke up to the most beautiful weather, and the day had every possibility in it of becoming a productive one, but I felt exhausted, even after a night's sleep. So I decided that I wouldn't make any definite plans, - just go with the flow.
Yoga has become my favourite way to start the day
My one determination, though, was to do my Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge routine. I do that every second day now. I'm in my first week, and I find it invigorating and not too hard to commit to, so I actually believe that this is something I will stick with. Unlike any other work-out or exercise routine that I've tried in the past.
The Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge is a 12 weeks' program, and I seriously think I'll be able to see this through. The benefits are obvious: Better over-all physical condition, better health, better ME!
Hopefully, I'll even lose some weight and get a more toned, lean and strong body, which is very high up on my list of short- (and long-) term goals.
It's definitely a part of my Freedom Journey, because to me, freedom is also feeling free in my body. Feeling comfortable in my own skin. Even though I'm quite happy with my body the way it is, I have a strong desire to lose some weight and get a leaner and stronger body, like the one I used to have before.
I was always lean and strong in my younger days, even after 2 child-births, - but 18 years ago I had an accident, - a head injury - which set me back physically and got me into a downward spiral with less exercise and gain of weight.
To make a long story short: It's been a long way to get back to normal. And I still have challenges (like fatigue), which makes it hard for me to motivate myself to do physical exercise, even though I've actually always liked being active. Therefor, feeling exhausted by the tiniest bit of exercise has been rather depressing for me. So I need to do this for myself. I want my life back!
I need to do what's best for me
Since my physical challenges are not visible or obvious to other people, it's not easy to make other people accept the fact that I have problems with working a 9-5 job. This is also a challenge for me, because I need to earn money to be able to support myself.
I'm alone (divorced) and don't have anyone else to share my expenses with, so I just have to find a way to cope. It's been hard, but I'm still here, and I do cope. Better and better, actually.
I still have a day-job, and I do appreciate that, - but I know that if I'm ever to recover fully from my head-injury, I need to reduce all the stress from my life and be free to set my own agenda every day.
That's why I know, without a shadow of doubt, that I need to be my own boss. I need to work with what I love and what makes me want to jump out of bed in the morning. I know that I need to be creative.
I need to be out and about, exploring the world, socializing with people, learning new things. I need to contribute to the world in a positive way, - in my unique way, with my talents and gifts. I want to spread peace, love and understanding, and inspire and motivate others to live the life they want without fear, and without apologizing for being who they are.
But before I can really make a difference in someone else's life, I need to start with myself. I need to start doing what I really want. I need to give myself a kick in the arse and stop procrastinating. And I need to start by exercising more and get "my old self" back.
So I hereby commit to the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge and to report my results on this blog on a regular basis. You can follow my progress here. You are now my Accountability Partner!
Feel free to cheer me on with a comment below and follow my blog, - and even better: Join my tribe and let's do this together!
I felt so much better after my Yoga Burn routine today, so if you're struggling with motivation to do any sort of exercise, I strongly suggest that you start with Yoga. You can do it at home, and you can start slowly and build yourself up, little by little. It's working for me, and I think it can work for you, too. There are many different programs online, so I'm sure you'll be able to find a program that suits you, but to save you some searching I can hereby recommend the Yoga Burn programs (there are several). Namasté!
If you want to start with the Yoga Burn Total Body Challenge, here's a link to where you can find it. Please note that this is my personal Affiliate link, so I might be rewarded with a small commission if you join through this link.
Saving money on a daily basis can be a challenge, especially if your monthly paycheck is only covering your most urgent needs from month to month and never really allows you to go on a shopping-spree or do anything out of the ordinary. That's why I want to share with you my top 10 Money Saving Tips that you can use on a daily basis to reduce your expenses and get more out of your money. Here they come:
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