Having a sense of humor is a trait not many are able to
master. Because it requires intelligence to be able to spark a wit with effect
at the right time.
People with a sense of humor are the ones you see laughing
most often, even if only by themselves.
They are the ones with the greatest self-acceptance, because
they have come to terms with who they are and what life has handed to them, and
are brave enough to not only overcome the challenges but even to make fun of
They are creative – after all, it takes a lot of mental
energy to come up with quick-witted jokes that put a smile on everyone else’s
face. It is thus also associated with wisdom and love of learning.
People with humor understand the difference between laughing
at someone and with them. They are conscientious in that they don’t need to hurt
anyone’s feelings in order to make a joke.
Laughing is a state of life and it also keeps you fit physically
It could be true that “a
sense of humor is God’s antidote for anger and frustration” (Rick Warren).
Humor is one of our fundamental character strengths and an
important survival tool. It helps gain intimacy, build connections and often
buffer stress. But it is also what helps us remain optimistic. And like Elbert
Hubbard said, “do not take life too
seriously, you’ll never get out of it alive”.
Techniques to fight insomnia or to ensure you get “a good
night’s sleep” are usually similar with techniques to relax. It’s the things
‘life coaches’/’instructors’ and the likes fill your mind with and they very
often center around one thing: letting go of whatever thoughts are troubling
The idea is to focus on something else if on nothing at all
is not possible.
To stare into the star-filled sky, take a long walk, absorb
your attention into something different that will also get you tired, and
steadily push aside what is causing your anxiety to skyrocket.
Fix your posture.
For all of us, there are some nights when falling – and
staying – asleep is difficult. The mind is not an easy thing to control. It
remembers things at random moments and shoves them right in front of you when
you least want them to appear. And it wakes up when all you desire is to shut
After a break – no matter how long or short – we experience
a change of mindset. It’s as if with a refreshed mind, rested body and renewed
spirit, we return stronger and more determined to do better.
New seasons do that.
Especially when they bring along a wave of change. It’s a
calling to reclaim control of yourself.
And it is through this inner alteration that you become
stronger, more optimistic, decisive and rejuvenated. “Renewal is what happens when you realize that some of this stuff you’ve
been carrying around doesn’t matter” (Rob Bell). Because it finally strikes
you that what matters most is primarily your own well-being. So change; renew
your space, set a to-do list, dream of new goals and dare to implement them.
Remember, you can’t help others to shine if you’re not
already glowing inside.
In life, we go through a series of relationships. People come
and go, leaving their marks on us and changing us for the better or worse.
Some are like parallel lines: we have a lot in common with them, but no matter how close they get, their lives will never coincide with ours. Then there are others with whom we start from different paths, our lives meet once, but then we drift apart again forever. Both versions are sad. They represent something unattainable. Something that either won’t happen or won’t last.
And the truth is, no matter how strong we want to appear, we’re
all searching for a happy end that has the duration of a lifetime. We want that
person who will come into our lives and prove why no other relationship worked.
That one with whom we will form a partnership. The person who will inspire you
to become a better version of yourself because you bring that out in them too.
The kind of person who you won’t be afraid to fall because you trust they will
always be there to catch you even with eyes closed.
It is difficult to let go of the stories and perceptions we
create in our head. It becomes harder as we gather experiences and become more
reserved, cautious and demanding of life itself.
But we can’t lose hope at any time that whatever happens has
a reason for it, and that something better lies ahead.
Remember, “there are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind” (C.S. Lewis).
The reality is this: even when on holiday, on a leave, on a
short getaway, we feel the need to be connected with the world digitally. We
fear we’ll miss out otherwise. That something life-shattering will occur and we
won’t know about it and we’ll be the only ones feeling we’ve been living under
a rock simply because we don’t know of the latest trending topics.
So we spend our entire lives – without break – constantly
attached to a digital world we are paradoxically trying to
We can’t turn it all off and disappear, although we know
that would be the ideal.
We are unable to disengage, to discharge from the social media
stress because we’re constantly thinking of our next post, our reaction to
someone else’s post and so forth.
We’re caught up in an unhealthy antagonism of who’s having
the most fun in the better place, and we waste time like this instead of
actually having that fun and enjoying ourselves with the people physically next
We find it almost impossible to distract our minds, to unplug
from it all and simply relax. It’s as if we can’t not do anything. By now, due to the radical rhythms in which we
live our lives, something still and tranquil is considered by our systems as
abnormal. As something we are almost physically incapable of doing.
We are so dependent on our devices, we cannot enjoy the reality of doing things without flaunting them.
And in the end, we forget to chase our dreams because we’re
busy chasing after the acceptance of people we hardly even know. For no
apparent or useful reason.
It’s good to – at least try – to detach from it all for a
while. To remember what it was like without the intrusion of social media in
our lives. When everything – even our relationships – were so much simpler. And
we weren’t all so constantly agitated and stressed that we are perpetually on
the verge of a burnout.
Emotions are like an invisible shadow that clings on to us
ever since we come into this world. They serve to help us taste life to the
maximum. They may enlighten us or confuse us according to the situation. But in
essence, they are what makes us stand out from every other species. The fact
that we can feel things, sometimes (too) deeply.
We talk of and experience emotional outbursts, because
sometimes our feelings get too difficult to bear.
And we often get carried away by what we feel, that sense of
excitement, the adrenaline rush, the fear even. We let our emotions dictate our
actions and sometimes this results in complicated situations.
So, we are prompted to follow our heart – our feelings – but
to take our brain with us. To be smart in the things we pursue and we feel we
desire, but to make our decisions wisely, logically and rationally. It’s not
always easy to think before you act. Because sometimes your heart pulls you
faster and stronger than your mind can convince you to think. It takes you to
places you shouldn’t be, places that are as exciting as perilous, ones that can
cause both happiness and pain. Your heart can easily drag you into situations
you cannot return from, no matter how much your brain may try to take over
Emotions are our strongest asset but also our greatest
There is a serenity in finding a
place you can call home. Because no matter how many buses, trains,
airplanes you need to get there, it is all worth the tiredness when you finally
reach it. It is a place you hold dear in your heart because you know it will
always welcome you back, no matter how far you go or how long it takes for you
It is even greater if you have friends who will always be
waiting for you and who will get out of their way to make you feel like home,
because that is exactly where you feel you are. A family is one that extends
beyond blood ties. And those friends who are geographically distant from you are
sometimes the ones who are the closest. You will talk for hours about
everything and always be up to date with each others’ lives. They will always
have some wise advice to share and that optimism that everything will be all
right and life will find its way to give you want you deserve.
There are places that mark our lives. Places where we wished
we could live forever, as long or short a period that word connotes. There are
places that don’t really change with time, but that is perfectly OK with us
because you don’t want them to change (only if it is for the better). There are
places other people tell you they visited on a travel streak and you are proud
to say, ‘I know it, I lived there, it is like home’.
There are places where no matter your absence, whenever you
return, you know exactly where everything is and where to go, where the hidden
gems are, and where to find the best views. As if coming back home.
And if you are lucky enough to find such a place with
friends who have become family, you are blessed with having a home away from
home, one that will offer you peace and tranquillity, a place to crash
(literally and metaphorically) and the strength to regroup yourself so you can
return to ‘normality’ stronger and more optimistic.
Three words. Four sides. A lifetime. A box,
however big or small, is used to store things you don’t want to throw away, yet
don’t want them in plain sight. The box we most cherish is the one that holds
our memories. Some keep it inside their head. In that special place with all
the thoughts they love to bring to mind. Others have a physical container
filled with memorabilia from times that were too special for them to ever
Each memory box is unique for every person who has one. Because not everyone has the same perception of the things that matter. Some people are overly sensitive, saving theatre tickets, beer caps, hand-written notes, printed photos, even dried-up flowers. They are things that encase more than a simple memory; a feeling that is worth remembering. Because it was at that time when they felt serene, loved and happy. When they believed that ‘forever’ is more than just wishful thinking but rather a word that could gain the meaning they want if they try hard enough.
Others have boxes with fewer things: books, music, photo
frames, souvenirs, even clothes. More practical entities of what a memory
But all have something in common: the memories we create are
the feelings that make us stronger, more optimistic and resilient. They are
proof that happiness does exist and will last as long as you are willing to
No matter how many boxes of memories we create, we must all
believe in the beauty of a happy ending. And the fact that we each deserve one.