Reaching for Help Is a Good Habit

Help! © by Dimitri N.

Kafka’s universe is starting to make more sense but the chaos is still there. Weekend is over and a new week has started with responsibilities that force me into some of my stabilising routines and habits. I was up at 5.30 today – although I usually aim at 6.28. But sometimes I have a client early in the morning.

I sat in quietude and let my mind wander – that is a good habit and a good start on the day.

The chaos inside me does not invite to carry out my habits because chaos is the opposite of habits. Habits are the routines that you repeat again and again to maintain inner peace. Chaos is not a routine and chaos does not stabilise; chaos is an inner earthquake that turns your brain upside down and confuses your brain cells to believe that they all need exercise at the same time.

My appeal for calm is useless; the only thing I can do is wait for my mind to calm down by itself. Sometimes the mind needs chaos because from chaos something new always develops. In times of change it is important to go with that change or you risk getting stuck in the past and your good habits will turn into bad habits. Thus, chaos is good although it doesn’t always feel good.

My brain cells all had their own seat and like in the cinema all the seats are numbered, but now someone has switched all the seats and it feels like my brain cells know what seat they are looking for but just can’t seem to find it. My head is dominated by confusion, but not by panic.

In situations like this you have to hold on to some of your habits to keep your foundation from falling apart. Some of it is crumbling but not all of it. Find the stable parts of your foundation and start building a new one as soon as your mind and brain cells starts to regroup and find order.

I use people in my network to support my foundation; people that already have a solid foundation that can hold my crumbling foundation are ready to help out. You should never be afraid to reach out for help when you need it. People around you also have a need to help you. Reaching out for help is a good habit.

Make a Wake Up Schedule

Time © by alancleaver_2000

Sleep and exercise is going well, I get up at 6.28 and later today I am going swimming 2.000 meters. Soon I will have to work on my diet habits because much to often I have to decide what to cook when I get hungry and by then it’s too late and I just eat whatever I find in the refrigerator.

6.28 am – that’s an odd time to wake up you might think? Well, there is a reason for that; I started my sleeping habits by setting the alarm clock to wake me up at 6.00 am but I realised that was not good. I just could not get out of bed at that time of day. I think it has got something to do with my geographical location. I live in Denmark and today the sun rises at 8.43 am and it sets at 4.17 pm, so getting up at 6 o’clock feels like in the middle of the night and for some reason we ‘Norsemen’ seem to need more sleep in winter than in the summer.

The sun rises about two minutes earlier each day and I thought it would be nice to get up about 6.00 am in the summer, hence I set the clock to wake me up two minutes earlier every Monday. This way my body gets used to getting up earlier and I get a bit more sleep during winter.

You can use this technique no matter where you live in the world. If you have trouble getting up early then start out by deciding a good time to get up (e.g. 6.00 am). Find out when you usually wake up; if you wake up at 9.00 am then set the clock to wake you up at 8.00 am. If you feel good about getting up at 8.00 then set it to 7.00 am.

If 7.00 am is hard for you then you should start getting up at 7.30 am and then accustom your body to get up earlier by setting the alarm clock two minutes earlier every week until you reach your goal.

Make a schedule that shows your progress and then you will reach your goal and get up at 6.00 am. It could look something like this:

Wake up schedule

Goal: 6.00 am

January 6.30 am – 6.24 am

Week 1: 6.30 am

Week 2: 6.28 am

Week 3: 6.26 am

Week 4: 6.24 am

February 6.22 am – 6.16 am

March 6.14 am – 6.08 am

April 6.06 am – 6.00 am

May 6.00 am!

How to Be Nice to People: Give Compliments

smile! © by seanbjack

- Hi, you look good today! It is hard to feel offended by such a compliment. You would feel flattered, smile and say thank you. If you find something positive to say to people that makes them feel good then you have made the day a better day for both of you.

There are different kinds of compliments and the above is a superficial compliment that works acknowledging. It will make the receiver feel good at the moment and it will make the receiver feel accepted. It is the kind of compliment that goes a bit further than saying hi and the receiver will see you as a nice person.

If you want to take compliments to the next level you need to give meaningful compliments that make a lasting impression. You do that by giving a specific compliment that shows that you paid attention to what the person did.

Furthermore, the compliments have to be sincere. If you do not mean what you are about to say, then do not say it. People will immediately notice if you give false compliments; and they will perceive you as false and untrustworthy. If you want to make a good impression then only give compliments that you mean.

Like anything else you give to other people: Give without expectations! Do not expect anything in return. Trust that anything you give will come back eventually in some form and that also goes for compliments.

Use compliments when giving critique

At sergeant school I learned to always give a compliment before critique and then end the critique with another compliment. Critique can be very hard to take because it tends to have a negative influence on the receiver; but giving compliments before and after the critique will make the receiver remember the good things he did. The easiest parts to remember from a conversation are the first and last things being said.

How to Be Nice to People: Smile!

Vlada © by Ihar Mahaniok

Would you like to look good? People look better when they smile and smiling will make people smile back. Smiling has a lot of advantages and it makes you look good to other people. They would think of you as a good and nice person; you would look like the kind of person people want to spend time with.

We all prefer to be around people who smile because they make us feel good about ourselves. If you feel good about yourself you feel motivated; you feel more energetic and you can see the purpose of life. You get a smile by giving a smile. If I feel down I like to go and collect smiles. I do that by taking a walk downtown and then I try to spot friendly people, catch their eyes and smile. I do not make a big smile but a small one just enough to recognise the other persons presence and that person will usually smile back.

A few years ago I was standing at a heavily trafficked place close to the railway station. A girl was approaching me riding a bike; I gave her a big smile right before she passed me. That smile almost killed her because she quickly turned her head, not smiling, but with this wondering look saying – who was he? My smile took all her attention from traffic and she steered right in front of a car. She managed to avoid being hit by the car but that day I learned the real power of smiling.

When you smile people will seem friendlier because they regard you as being friendly and that makes them feel safe. Their first impression of you would be that you seem like a nice person; and that is exactly what you want to.

There are many different ways to smile and you only need to do a small effort to get great results, so start smiling to everybody no matter how you feel inside. It will make them feel good and they will make you feel good.