Category Archives: Creativity

Holiday Blues of A Writer – Why you need to take an inspirational rest once in a while

I have been irritated with myself for not working more over the holidays.  I was disappointed that I did not write more and that I slept, ate and watched movies most of the time. Today is the first official working day of the New Year and I have started by reading and writing. I feel pressure on my shoulders as I enter January and similar to last year I feel that there is too much to do and not sure where to start. Do you know this feeling?
I am eager to get back into a routine but also weary of all the work that looks at me and needs to be tackled today. Why is it that we procrastinate until we have too much to do? Why can we not work in moderation? I wish I had an answer to these questions. I assume that the year end calls for a break and especially since no one is productive I felt entitled to being slack as well. I know though that the only one who will suffer is myself because my bad conscience increases.
I thought I would give myself some time to think and hoped the creative juices would flow again after the holidays but I am not sure I am there yet. I have a strong sense that something needs to emerge in 2016, that I need to let out an inner flame and that I have not been running on full steam yet even though I had been productive and busy, I feel like I did not give my best at all times. I feel like I have been cheating myself but I am not sure why I feel this way.

Like in the past, I m waiting for a miracle while I know that the miracle is inside me.

I could be more effective and reach my goals if I just let go of my fears and went ahead with passion. The thing is that this is the hard part about being your own boss. It’s the daily challenge to show up and be your best. When you are employed you can give 70% and it is still acceptable. When you are self-employed you want to give at least 95% or more. You need to be fresh, energetic, focused and emotionally stable. You need to create and find the atmosphere for creativity whether you are in your office or in a dodgy hotel room. You need to be up for networking with prospects and clients even if you are drained and tired.
And that’s why you need a break once in a while. A real break where you can just be yourself and relax. I thought I would read more during the holidays  and I can tell I am really eager to tackle a few books I bought last year. I am also ready to finish a manuscript I have been dragging along for the last two years. So that’s great news.
6 January marks the last day of the holiday season in Germany and Switzerland. In some parts of Europe it is the most important day of the holiday season. For us it means that the next day we really need to throw out the Christmas tree and all the decorations. It’s a nice ritual and the cleaning up exercise means that I can get back into full steam.
What are you struggling with and how did you get out of your holiday blues? Let me know in the comments.

Life is a bollywood movie

by VMS

Have you ever imagined your life to be bollywood movie? You know like you sit in a café and suddenly you look into his eyes and your hands start moving towards the sky, your bangles showing up as you move your hands upwards in different mudras (handsigns). You give your loved one a sexy wink and you move your hips and suddenly both of you are in a mountain range in Switzerland dancing with different costumes in colour-coordinated style.

The words of an Urdu song come out of your mouth and your voice is a few pitches higher. The advantage of being in a movie is that you are also very slim and wear full make up and have perfect hair when you just get out of bed.

Your family and close friends magically appear when you need them and the special one is on your side in the critical moments of your life.

It sounds funny and unrealistic but often I think when we start the day with a bollywood mindset, listen to the music on the way to work and keep that smile when we think of our prince…that we get more positive responses from our surroundings.

Let’s try to have a bollywood day and please share your experience.

Here are songs to get you into the swing:


A family


How to speak to your brain to solve any issue in three easy steps

This morning it took me a long time to get into work mode. Maybe the whole pizza and bottle of red last night had a bit of influence on my slack-ness. I came to my office later than normal (10 AM) and cheerfully started my day by jotting down a cool idea on my whiteboard. I wiped away small tasks from the To-Do-List in no time (despite the wine).

And then I get a mail which tells me in the typical formal Swiss letter style (that they took over into email writing) that one of my business plans will NOT work out in the way I wanted. The writer gives me the facts only plus a suggestion what I can do. I was disappointed. Then I reflected. Maybe this extra challenge was built in so that I find a better solution.

We Germans (and the Swiss Germans have perfected this art) tend to think and speak in a „this will not work“ manner. We often explain why certain ways will not work but usually fail to offer an alternative or a solution. I have fallen into this trap many times myself and believe it can be frustrating for people with other cultural attitudes.

While it is acceptable to be negative or pessimistic once in a while I learnt that the „this will not work“ manner stops your brain from thinking about solutions.

First step: Ask your brain an open ended question

In other words when you have a problem you would like to solve you need to give your brain a task to work on while you are sleeping, ironing or cleaning. One example would be to ask your brain „How am I going to pay those bills?“ instead of saying „I am never going to be able to pay those bills.“

Second step: Write down all solutions that came to your mind during ironing

The next morning or after ironing your shirts you take a white sheet of paper and jot down all the solutions that came to your mind (Please note. „Suicide is not an acceptable solution.“).

Third step: You forget what you have written and look at it with a fresh eye

After a few hours of working on another task you look at your solutions again. You can highlight the ones that seem easy to achieve and start with those. Then you devise a plan for every week and work off that plan until you have solved your issue.

What if your pessimist breaks through?

The German inside of me sometimes is still hesitant, miserable and wants to ponder on the problems (even though the original problem has disappeared through above mentioned 3-Step-Plan).  I am giving this pessimist a bit of room. I allow it inside my home. I show this pessimist some achievements and I allow the pessimist to write down all of her wishes in a booklet. If that does not help I order pizza and wine. Just like „groundhog day“.

What is your recurring challenge or limitation?

Please share your experience with the 3-Step-Plan.