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Find everything from within!

Find everything from within!

The days passed and we are over six months into the COVID era. We needed to find answers and surprisingly we managed to find everything from within! Yes, everything had changed. We as humans, to survive, we rapidly adapted. We are getting used to the new norms and a young generation of kids are learning it as the only reality they know.

COVID is like a coin with a “Creation side” and a “Devastation one”. During COVID times, some believe they are lucky as the coin felt face up on the opportunity/side for them. Others feel unlucky as it felt facing down for them. I don’t believe in luck. I believe in humans taking responsibility of their destiny as we all have the power to define our future by the actions we take in our journeys. 

Here some positive things COVID brought

  1. Gave permission to do things people were hesitant to try.
  2. Put a magnifying glass on the extremes that existed in our society.
  3. Pushed every individual to redefined terms and priorities.
  4. Catalyzed technological advances.
  5. Time to find everything from within!

1- Permission

How many young moms wanted to homeschool their kids and didn’t dare to go against the grain? “What would happen to the kids?” They were wondering, “Are they going to be socially inadequate?” Now, COVID sent all the kids home and moms are seeing the benefits. Of course, this is not a solution that fits every household or every kid!

The same happened with the home office concept! Companies were hesitant to move and try remote work. The new reality with COVID forced them to experiment with what they were postponing for years. Suddenly lots of data is coming in that will help companies to plan their future moves and views on this topic.

2- The magnifying glass effect

Problems don’t arise overnight. Problems and behaviours live within us in us latency. Throughout our lives, we learned tools to adapt and control ourselves to be socially accepted. Stress can trigger human emotions exposing unwanted behaviours. As COVID showed up suddenly, we didn’t have time to prepare or accept the changes imposed in our daily lives.

Overnight our survival switch was “on”, and all the control we believed to have, was out of our hands.

Losses of jobs and the fact many stayed more time at home living extended hours interacting with the family, change the dynamics. The fusses got snappier than ever and lots of domestic violence is happening. Consumption of alcohol rose considerably which lead to worst outcomes. The personality problems were there!  Now, the lack of communication became obvious, and the new scenario wasn’t favouring those involved in this kind of toxic relationship.

Although, on the flip side of the coin, those who had a good relationship embraced the opportunity to spend more time together, to share things that busy routines were in the way without even noticing. Lots of people became more empathic, more tolerant and less egoistic.

We had time to stop and smell the roses!

3- Redefining terms and priorities

COVID made us stop our life abruptly forcing us to stay at home and preventing us to do anything we were used to doing outside of our houses. The society had time (which we were always craving for) to realize after a few weeks into lockdown, that we were not missing so badly the restaurants or the bar experience, the rushing to meeting friends and having the feeling of running without a destination.

Finally, we started to enjoy our homes, to declutter our lives and fell a sense of stillness.

We accepted the fact we won’t be travelling abroad for a while and maybe it is a good idea of travelling locally to support our country, provinces, cities and neighbourhoods. A sense of community was reborn. My hubby and I buy from the grocery corner store, smaller stores became more desirable and safer than the massive supermarkets.

You and I want the small business owners in our hoods to survive therefore we make a conscious effort to buy from them.

Our priorities shuffle. No better, no worst. Just different. The accent is now put into humanity, into looking around and become part of something bigger. It’s a time to find everything from within!

4- Catalyzed technology advances

Did I need to go to the doctor’s office and wait for an hour in a room full of sick people sometimes for hours? How come the teleconference wasn’t available before COVID? Why people didn’t trust online shopping for produce and now they are doing it and enjoying it? Kids couldn’t attend remote classes or us remote meetings especially in days when heavy snow made so dangerous the driving?

Fear and perfection it’s all that comes to mind. I call this “The polishing effect”. When someone is afraid of failure, rejection or not being good enough, it feels safer to keep polishing the gem believing one day it will become irresistible and impossible to be rejected. But that rarely happens in real life! Especially nowadays that technology moves at a speed very hard to catch for the average person!

The old and wise quote “Better done than perfect” os proving itself during COVID. 

I am a firm believer in disruption as a catalyzer for progress.

COVID disrupted our world in ways we couldn’t imagine or anticipate. As the evolution shows not the stronger are the ones who survive, are the more flexible and adaptable individuals, businesses and societies. The power of our communities is greater than we believed in the past and to our surprise, we could find everything we need within.

This pandemic brought us time to find everything from within! By that, I mean within ourselves, our homes, our families and most importantly our communities and countries. If we always had it all from within then the question reminds… What, why and who told us we needed to be looking outside? Different people, societies and history will remember COVID in different ways. It will all depend on the boat each one was in during the storm.

I naively hope COVID would continue pushing society to reflect on the experience and learn from the rights and wrongs during these uncertain times.

Please leave your thoughts and experiences during COVID! I would love to learn how are you navigating this journey.

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Is food a tool or maybe a metaphor?

Is food a tool or maybe a metaphor?

Food is a tool, isn’t it?

You might be wondering… What does she mean by “food is a tool“?  Well, let me explain myself with an example. As most of you know, Eli is the official chef in my house. He loves to cook! Every morning, as soon as he wakes up, he decides the dish he will cook that day. Then he will plan his day accordingly. After his daily 8 km walk, he will stop by the grocery store to get the fresh produce needed. Sometimes, he would drive to the Turkish, Korean or  Middle Eastern specialty store to find special ingredients he’ll need. Later in the day, the cooking will start with his traditions and rituals. It’s a pleasure to observe him. His creative side comes alive and he gets into a trance similar to meditation. Food is his maximal expression of love and care.

Live to Eat or Eat to live?

Last Sunday I found myself starving. Eli was upset and didn’t cook for a couple of days. One of the things I learned after twenty years of marriage is that cooking is his way of expressing his feeling. On the other hand, cooking for me is an obligation. I cook only when I have to; either when someone depends on me or when I have no other option. Food in my parents’ home was only to cover a necessity. I started cooking that evening because I had no food all day. Suddenly I was deeply thinking about how food is a tool serving different purposes for different people. Here are some of the ideas that came to mind. Of course, it would be amazing if you can add some more to the list!

  • It’s a basic tool to survive.
  • It nurtures our brains and our body.
  • Helps to share our cultural background.
  • Build bridges between people from different cultures.
  • It’s one of the five love languages to express feelings and emotions
  • Develops creativity while following instructions
  • Can be a time to practice mindfulness
  • It’s an expression of art
  • Teaches history
  • Carries traditions

Did you ever think of food as a metaphor?

I find it was fascinating how my imagination was unleashing as I was getting deeper into my creative space. I loved it because helped me realized how everything is connected and intertwined; feelings, emotions, food, words. Furthermore, everything is loaded with meaning, stories, memories and experiences. Food is more than a simple tool. It can be a metaphor for our own existence. The skills learned from our family, friends and mentors throughout life become the ingredients that created each one of us as a unique dish. We are one recipe made with the ingredients life presented us. Did you ever think that some of those ingredients and underused or forgotten? Or that maybe combining them in a different way we could come up with new dishes?

I think life is sending us an invitation to visit OUR own creative spaces allowing OUR imagination to guide us to unknown flavours of ourselves…

I firmly believe COVID had stopped us in our tracks forcing us to reflect. That by itself is a gift in disguise waiting to be recognized. Did you know we have a Book Club twice a month? During those meetings, we analyze chapter by chapter of the book Say YES, Ask questions laterallowing our community of participants to learn and understand others’ perspectives and points of view. Would you like to join us? If you want to watch some short videos inspired by the weekly blogs, make sure to SUBSCRIBE to my YOUTUBE channel.

What does pleasure mean during COVID?

What does pleasure mean during COVID?

Yesterday I had a meltdown!

What does pleasure mean during COVID?

I am trying the intermittent fasting for the past month. It’s been working quite well. Despite the fact I lost weight yet I am not happy. I started to question myself, “What does pleasure mean during COVID?” I cannot be with friends, I cannot travel the world and now I self-imposed this diet. So where is the pleasure of life? Where can I find that zest that keeps me alive?

If we cannot go to Barcelona, we will bring Barcelona to us!

I dug through my old pictures of travels and food. I was craving for new experiences and adventures. To my surprise, I felt like I was re-living them. I truly enjoyed it! the experience was so great that I decided to turn it into my next project. How about a travel channel with food and stories? As soon as I shared the idea with Eli he was all in. So right away he went to the supermarket, bought a baguette, cured ham, tomatoes olive oil and soon we were feeling in Barcelona. If we cannot go to Barcelona, we will bring Barcelona to us!

Don’t allow COVID to define us!

This doesn’t mean I won’t watch for my food anymore! It means I need to redefine the new terms I want to live my life considering the limitations COVID brought to us. It’s time to say YES to the new reality and ask ourselves the same questions we did before but this time answer them considering the new facts COVID imposed in our lives.

Let’s try to enjoy life and don’t allow COVID to define us. Pleasure means to me re-live old travels and share it with friends.

What does pleasure mean to YOU during COVID?

Please share how you bring pleasure to life during COVID times!

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