Tuesday, August 25, 2015

One important reminder


Yesterday I made 5 new friends, cooked up my family’s favorite meal using #anewrecipe, got a rave review from a client; #feelingsograteful and later in the evening I clicked a #feelingexcited selfie whilst going for #dinnerwithmybestie.

That’s what my Facebook Timeline would look like, should I choose to post this picture and all of these good things about my day. And that’s surely not a bad thing. Sharing the positive updates of my life seems like a great thing to do.
However that’s not my only truth…

Today I woke up late, feeling extremely low for some reason. Moods, hormones or was it that persistently nagging family problem; Sigh! Who knows? Had no time to figure it out as I hurriedly got myself ready and prepared for a Google hangout session where I made 5 new friends. On the way home I ran errands and completed an endless list of odd chores looking like a ‘crazed lady from hell on wheels’, only to come home and cook up a quick meal with a new recipe which Tarla Dalal promised was easy yet equally tasty. Just when I thought I could grab a quick bite to eat, I realized it was time for my client’s session. She expressed genuine appreciation on making constructive progress and I was feeling so grateful to be able to make a difference in her life. Later that evening, I was this close to cancelling dinner plans but I dragged myself to have dinner with my bestie assuming that some company would help shake off this melancholy feeling I woke up with, which like a silent stalker just hung around in the background all day.
This is my real truth.

Often times, we mistake people’s reel life with their reality. Couple of filters down, anyone can look just the way they choose to. I can too. So can you. I can even edit and re-edit my moments of my life as many times as I want, an opportunity real life does not give you. A rewind or fast forward button, now wouldn’t that be helpful on certain days. However in this journey of life, the only constant is change and we try to make the most of our situations. The fact then is that we are all human, no one’s perfect. And neither are our lives. We all have our highs and lows, we all wear our crowns with pride and carry our crosses with grace.

Today; social media allows you to exhibit all the amazing things that are happening in your life. And that’s fine. Provided it’s viewed in the right spirit. Your status updates are a great way to remember just how blessed and exciting your life truly is. Like a ‘Gratitude Journal.’ And even if you’ve shared the lows and difficult things that have happened, marvel at how far you’ve come since; how you made it through. Keep the focus on your story.
One important reminder; don’t compare someone else’s high light reel with your behind the scenes footage. Equating your life to your friends “perfect” life is pointless. For your life is not just what it looks like on FB, Twitter or Instagram. Neither is mine. It’s so much more…

Alright then; gotta go. I’m signing out. Life is calling...


Contact Tasneem Kagalwalla for personal development and support in overcoming personal or professional challenges.

Click here for more articles on self-improvement http://tasneemkagalwalla.blogspot.com/search/label/Self%20Improvement

Monday, August 17, 2015

3 ‘must haves’ in friendship

My Best Friend n I

In spite of having lived most of my life across different cultures and countries, my friends, old and new have always remained close to my heart and fortunately distance has not diminished the bond we share. They remain, to date - the grounded inner circle when life’s out of control, the integral to the peripheral, those very special ones I (can) rely on morning, noon or night.

But this one friend stands out. Stands apart. This one friend knows my every move. Every thought; sometimes before I think it. Really understands my feelings without having to explain them. Like a sixth sense. A telepathy which happens almost magically. This friend just knows; my every secret, my every heart break, my insecurities and worries, my achievements and my dreams… we share it all.
Truly then, this is a friend for keeps. United in thought, we love, care and support each other like no other. And luckily, luck has nothing to do with it. My best friend and I have worked very hard to come to this place of safe comfort and trust. Now; we are one.

If you’re wondering who this best friend is. Let me tell you without much further ado.
It’s me. I am my own best friend.

“I am the one who dries her tears and listens to her sorrows. I am the one who wakes up in the middle of the night and laments with her over past regrets.

I’m the one who tells her she’s beautiful and supports her passions and innermost desires. I am the one who follows her blindly down undiscovered roads and keeps her company when no one’s around. I am the one who buys her surprises and spoils her silly. I’m her true best friend.” 

Being your own best friend is an important part of self-improvement. It allows you to grow and evolve as a better person. It empowers you to achieve more whilst being comfortable in your own skin. 

So here are 3 fundamental must haves you will need to practice in order to walk that journey of befriending yourself. 

Cut yourself some slack.
Do you expect your best friend to be perfect? Do you punish your good friend with an onslaught of verbal criticism for hours? I doubt that. A true friend accepts both the good and bad in you without passing judgement. They realize that no one is perfect. If your best friend/s is going through a rough time you don’t tell him/her, what a loser he/she is, how miserably messed up they are or how things will never change for them. Instead you are encouraging, motivating and empathetic. You say things like, ‘don’t worry, this too will pass’ or ‘that’s ok, you did your best.’ You try to help them, cheer them up, sometimes by taking the time to give their story a positive spin and point them towards the direction of renewed hope and gratitude.

Be that friend to yourself first.

Rule of thumb: If you wouldn't say it to your best friend, don't say it to yourself.

Make yourself feel special.
A best friend goes out of his/her way to make you feel special. Shares honest appreciation. Celebrates your victories with you. For you. They’ll wish you the best and in general go out of their way to make you feel like you’re a superstar. Together you have a blast.

Think about it. When most of us think of enjoying ourselves, we usually equate it with other human contact. However, going to the movies, joining interest groups, booking a table at a favorite restaurant, a nice warm bath, a delicious smoothie ... there are many things we can treat ourselves to each day.  We just need to take the time and put the effort into doing them. 

Try developing an enjoyable interest that you can pursue alone. Doing so will help to deepen your bond with yourself.

Rule of thumb: If you do it with/for a best friend; do it for yourself too.

Love yourself unconditionally.
In true friendship, unconditional love develops. You love your best friend no matter what and will always want the best for him/her. However when it comes to yourself, there are limitations. You’ll love yourself when you get to your ideal weight, get the dream job or home or worse still you’ll only love yourself when you find someone who loves you.
Instead of supporting yourself, you often drown your grievances by indulging in food and other addictions including self-pity and other self-destructive behaviors. Learning how to face our barriers, instead of escaping from them, is one of the most essential (albeit a tad difficult) way of developing self-love. 
Try this as a head start to treating yourself more kindly. Take time out (e.g. whenever you wake up or go to sleep), to say nice things to yourself. Sounds cheesy, but it's a proven way to boost self-worth and happiness. Effective self-talk examples could include: "I forgive myself", "I let go of my past", "I treat my body well", "I love being myself", etc.
Learn to value and respect yourself.
Rule of thumb: If you love your best friend; love yourself first.
Go ahead. Be your own best friend. And then someday; your best friend and my best friend can be best friends too.

Tasneem Kagalwalla for personal development and support in overcoming personal or professional challenges.
Click here for more articles on self-improvement http://tasneemkagalwalla.blogspot.com/search/label/Self%20Improvement

Thursday, August 6, 2015

The shortest and most effective visualization

A romantic story

The magical effects of visualizations has been a subject close to my heart as it has proven to bring about so many positive changes and outcomes in my life. My husband being one of them. (Read all about that @ http://tasneemkagalwalla.blogspot.com/2015/05/how-i-attracted-my-ideal-partner-in-3.html )
For many years I have been regularly spending time with creating customized visualizations for myself and my clients as well as listening to so many other empowering ones available from contemporaries and experts in my line of work.

It has become my habit consequently to usually drift off to sleep listening to a guided visualization every night. It soothes the days stress away, calms and refreshes the mind and body thus allowing a peaceful night in. It’s a perfect addition to your bedtime routine.

One cold night after a long day I stumbled into bed ready to plug in and switch off for the night. Just when I got comfy under the sheets, having plugged in the headphones into my mobile I realized that my phone battery had died. Damn. Complete bummer. The thought of getting out of bed and getting my IPad which would well serve the same purpose was too cumbersome. I was just too comfy to make that effort. So I playfully rolled over to my husband and asked him to guide me through his version of a visualization for the night.

Now it’s important here to know a little bit about my husband. Although he has a very emotional and sensitive side to him, mostly he’s a finance guy with a practical head between his shoulders. He is more of a left brained individual, unafraid to call a spade a spade and uses logic and common sense as dependable qualities with which he leads a happy life.
Therefore when he said ok, I was totally taken aback. Very keen to know how this one is going to turn out, I closed my eyes and tried to keep an open mind. I was expecting either a rational explanation on the benefits of sleeping or a guided visualization which would have me guiding myself out of it after. However I was completely wrong and pleasantly surprised. Not only was he articulate with his choice of words and affirmations but vivid in his descriptions. I was on the silver beaches of the Caribbean that night and it was blissfully tranquil. Sweet dreams are made of these.

Over the years it became a norm and often I’d ask him to talk me off to sleep. Each time, I’d ask; “Where am I today?” eager to go on yet another soul journey. I have travelled far and wide as a result, visited several beautiful locations and known serenity through his eyes. I have felt the cool sand between my toes and have been touched by a soft breeze over a mountain top. I have walked the mesmerizing dessert dunes of Arabia and seen the lush green jungles of Africa.
Haven gotten used to these moments we spent together before bedtime, I looked forward to this quintessential question, every night; “Where am I today?”

Until last night… We got home late. It was well past midnight when we retired to bed. We were tired and I was sensing my husband was in no mood to take me through any visualization imagery. Yet, programmed to ask, rolling over into his outstretched arm, I asked; “Where am I today?”
Pulling me closer he peacefully said; “Right here with me.”

I slept like a baby.

Contact Tasneem Kagalwalla for your own customized Guided Visualization and/or for more information on how Life Coaching works best for you.

Read more on how to master the art of visualizing @ http://tasneemkagalwalla.blogspot.com/2015/05/how-i-attracted-my-ideal-partner-in-3.html

For more motivational metaphors and true stories click here http://tasneemkagalwalla.blogspot.com/search/label/Motivational%20metaphors%2Ftrue%20stories