BEAUTIFUL BALCONIES OF BARCELONA .2

I will be back soon…

 

” Collect moments, not things”  – unknown

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27.03.16 INTROVERT

Already for a long time I have known that I am an introverted person, however only a few months ago I have truly accepted this fact and I think you should to.

There is nothing wrong with being introverted, or extroverted for that matter. Just like there are morning people and night owls, it is just a character trade. However often people feel like they should be one or the other, without accepting and acknowledging their true nature. And this, in my opinion, is wrong. Why do we feel the need to be or act different? Why is it so hard to be yourself? Is it because of others having certain expectations of you, or is it your own mind that tells you, that you have to be different? I suppose it is often an combination of the two and only when we truly listen to our heart, without noises from the outside, we can maybe hear or rather feel the soul within.

This generation can be seen as a very social one, always connecting through different platforms and sharing their lives with one another. However can one compare this type of connecting to real life conversations between to persons looking each other in the eye? I don’t know, maybe this could be a topic for another time. But what I have noticed among people my age, is the fear of not belonging, the fear of being alone or left out. The anxiety of not being able to twitter, Facebook, instagram etc, the need to always be online. With this comes the notion that being alone for a day, not seeing friends or family, just you and yourself, is bad or means that you are unsocial. That you always have to be around others, or otherwise you are a loner. Why do we think this? Why should we feel bad when we want to spent some time on our own?

I don’t think we should. I actually really enjoy my free time, now that I let myself do so. I do not feel bad, when instead of going to a party, I stay at home. Whereas before I would feel guilty or unsocial, now I understand that I need this alone time. It makes that when I do hang out with people, I truly want to be there and can be more present, which results in better relationships.

There a lot of  misconceptions people have on introverts and I would like to adres a couple. Not saying that every introvert is like this, or that extroverts can’t feel the same, after all everyone is different. However these are common misunderstandings on introverted people;

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Introverts do not like to talk: We actually can and often like to talk, if we are very into a certain subject, it’s hard to stop us from talking. However most of us do not like small talk and often avoid this. In addition we often need some time before giving a response, we need to proces the conversation first and relate it to previous talks. This doesn’t mean we do not want to talk or we are hiding things, we just need some time to think about it.

All introverts are shy: Being shy is not  the same as being introvert. There are a fair share of extroverts that are actually really shy. Being shy means that you have a lack of self-esteem in social situations, they are very self aware and afraid to talk. This doesn’t have to be the case with introverts. Introversion is often defined as recharging and gaining energy through alone time, whereas shyness has more to do with discomfort and anxiety in situations involving social interactions. A neuroscientist who studies shyness said, “Shyness is a behaviour – it’s being fearful in a social situation. Whereas introversion is a motivation. It’s how much you want and need to be in those interactions”

Introverts aren’t socially skilled and don’t like to be around people: Introverts can seem absent at times, because in our mind we are very busy. We actually need and enjoy more solitude, but the notion that introverts don’t want the company of others is false. We just socialise in a different way. We often put ourself in another person shoes and try to see things from his’ or her’s perspective. We are often very curious and have no problem to show interest in the people around us. Introverts do like people, but favour quality of quantity in relationships.

Introverts are boring: Just because we don’t say much, doesn’t mean we have nothing to say. People often think introverts are boring because we don’t participate in many activities and have less contact with other people. But with introverts the quantity doesn’t count, the quality does. We experience everything very intensely, from activities to relationships.

Introverts have more negative personalities: because we like being alone, we are often seen as more depressive. This misconception is coming from a genuine concern from more extroverted people, putting their feelings on us. When extroverts are alone for too long, they feel sad and depressed, therefore they think we feel the same. But introverted people don’t associate solitude with loneliness.

It is easy to tell whether someone is introverted or extroverted: Many introverts have mastered the role of behaving like an extrovert in social situations, acting more outspoken than they would really feel. They may enjoy the social interaction and attention, but later crave time alone to recover, to regain energy. The longer we keep up the show, the longer we need to recuperate. So introverts do like people and socialising, just in a different way.

 

Source:

Huffingtonpost

 

 

22.03.16 ALIENATION

“We have to heal our wounded world. The chaos, despair and senseless destruction we see today are a result of the alienation that people feel from each other and their environment”

Michael Jackson

Often, without realising it, I forget how blessed I am to live in a country as safe as the Netherlands. I have never felt the fear of walking alone to school as a child, never had to hide my face because of the single fact that I am a woman, never was obliged to cary a weapon, never felt afraid of my own family, never.. So I do not think I have the ability to speak or wright on this fear, that many people live in every second of every day.

However I do know it is like to feel distant from the people around you, all focussing on their mobile phone, to see people destroying the last parts of beautiful nature around us, to notice the change in the now less quiet and clean mountains of Switzerland, to be astonished by people who only seem to enjoy or admire a location once they have taken a picture of it.

These two feelings may not seem related at first, but they both stem from an alienation, differentiation, from our surroundings, as well people as nature. If we want to move a way from this age of destruction, of our planet, of our relationships and of ourselves, I believe that we have to first reconnect with our own mind. We have to reconnect to our selves and our core beliefs, before we can truly be open to connect to other beings and our environment.

I can not say I am there yet, but I try daily to establish a deeper connection with myself, my mind, my body, and with the people and nature around me. How do I this?? I am afraid I am not able to tell you, you will have to find your own path to establish this connection. I believe this is a never-ending journey, never stop learning, always be open to new discoveries in life..

CHANGE OF DIRECTION

Hi …

I haven’t posted anything in a long time and I could make a long list of reasons why, but I honestly don’t think anyone would be interested. Today I decided to start again, however I am changing it up a bit. Whereas before I focused around food, now I just want to write, to express my feelings and thoughts. Even if it is just for myself to clear my mind from the thoughts I had throughout the day and also to get into the habit of writing daily.

Without a doubt, I am a introvert person; I really appreciate my alone time and can easily keep myself busy. However because of this I have a lot of conversations/thoughts in my mind, that keep going. This can be a good creative proces, but sometimes it is nice to put something out of my mind, for example by writing it out.

Topics I will probably write about in the future, are;

  • yoga – this plays a big role in my life, it has helped me to connect with and appreciate my body. Although I haven’t been practising as much as I would like to, I try to at least spend 10 mins on the mat, even it is just some light stretching or focusing on my breath. With this comes meditation, which is a journey I still need to take, but feel very strongly connected to.
  • architecture – at the moment I am an architecture student at the Technical University of Delft and loving it. At times it is very hectic, but in the last 6 months or so I have learned so much, not only about architecture, history, landscaping, etc but also about myself and where my priorities lie. I now look very differently at buildings and instead of looking down all the time, I notice I am glancing up, admiring the beautiful structure and ornaments of buildings.
  • family – my family, as weird as they are, is very important to me.
  • traveling – as I may have mentioned before, last year I went on a gap year. During this time I not only travelled in Europa and Asia, but also learned a new language, did a very intense but rewarding internship and also spend time on my portrait drawing skills.
  • Asia – even though I am as Dutch as they go (blond hair, pale skin, blue eyes), my family and I have a strong connection to Asia. I was born in Singapore and lived there for a couple of years, my mom is finishing her master in Chinese studies and some of my family live in Asia. I can’t exactly explain why we all have this fascination with this continent and its culture, but each one of my travels to China, Tibet, Philippines,  have been life-changing experience. I could do a whole post alone on what Asia means to me
  • nature – I have been fortunate to have traveled to many countries at such a young age, and I am very grateful for these opportunities that I had. Exploring and visiting these different places, made me appreciate and respect every different aspect of nature; the upcoming warmth and beauty of a sunrise in Africa, the cool and relaxing rains in Hong Kong, the sound of the bells from the cows in Switzerland. Every single one of them unique in its own way.
  • Barcelona – just because, Barcelona.. If I got a job offer today, I would pack my bags and leave.

 

I hope I have sparked your interests and just as with my yoga, I am going to write something everyday, even if it is just one sentence..

 

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PERFECT MORNINGS

Most people have their own morning routine and I think it is very important to do so. I am not saying we should all have the same routine, no you should make your own, however there are a few things you can do in the morning that will set you up for the rest of the day. Things like yoga, meditation, journaling or drawing. I will do a more in depth post on why and how to obtain these habits in the future, but first here is a example of how I prefer to start my day.
I wake up quite early, I always have and probably always will. For the last two years I haven’t used an alarm clock to wake up, nothing beats waking up on your demand. To be awoken by a harsh sound will definitely affect your mood for the rest of the day.

As I’m trying to get into meditating (but still only a befinner) I ise this moment, the moment right after I wake up, to meditate. Nothing has happened yet, I haven’t checked my phone, I haven’t had anything that could have triggered my mind to get into full action and often I stay in bed while my short meditation. With one hand on my belly I just try to focus on my breathing and my hand moving up and down with every breath I take. Also now I don’t set an alarm, I just do this for however long it feels necessary. There are also other ways to start with meditating and I don’t think there really is a wrong way, just go with what works for you; sitting or lying down, morning or evening, alone or with guidance.

After this I will do a yoga flow practice of some sort, it really depends on how I’m feeling. Sometimes I feel the need for some intense hip openers and other days I really feel liking working on my shoulders, however I always almost start with a couple of sun salutations or various there of and end with a couple of inversions.


The yoga practice can take anywhere from 10 to 60 minutes and also here I don’t set my self a time limit. I understand this is not possible for everyone because of their job or school, but if you get I the habit of waking up early you’ll have plenty of time and don’t feel the need to rush through anything.

After having had a big glass of water, or tea in the weather, I usually have my breakfast or in the case that I don’t have food, like today, I’ll head off to the market to buy what’s in season or the ripest.


Today the watermelons were reduced and I got a whole watermelon for just 3 euros. I asked the marketeer if he could cut it in have for me so I could eat without having to return home.

So with 7 kilos of melon I headed to this beautiful park; Parc de la Ciutadella, in Barcelona and enjoyed my (very sweet) watermelon along this small lake. It is so important to take the time to enjoy and savour your food, be conscious and aware. If you could make on change in your morning routine, I would like it to be this: instead of chowing down your breakfast in front of the tv, while checking social media or even reading the papers, I want you to sit down with you food and perhaps your family and eat it with mindfulness, enjoying every mouthful. You will feel the difference!