Episode 23 – Confidence & Comfort Zones

Please click here to listen to the podcast episode on iTunes.

Hi everyone,

It’s Tannaz and welcome to another episode of minutes on growth. 

Ive been examining and studying leaders from all around the world in various fields for years, and I’ve noticed that the one trait they all have in common is confidence. Whether they’re on a stage giving a speech, or recording vlogs on their social media or you’re simply in their presence and watch them carry themselves in a room filled with people, you’ll notice that with every word they say, they exude a special type of confidence. In fact, this doesn’t only apply to educated and knowledgeable people. Have you ever been in a room where you’re extremely knowledgable in a field but someone with more confidence and less knowledge maybe even incorrect knowledge is doing most of the talking. I have. I mean there have been times when I’m absolutely confident that what they’re saying is a bunch of mumbo jumbo, but the way in which they carry and deliver themselves makes me actually doubt myself. I want to speak up and correct them, but I cant. Why? Because their public speaking skills are stronger than mine.

So how can we learn to speak up about the areas we have expertise and knowledge in?  How can we build our public speaking skills? We know that the art of public speaking stems from having a high level of confidence, but how do we attain confidence? Is it a learned trait or does it come down to genetics? In my opinion, we’re all born confident. Over time, as a result of society comparing us with others on the basis of looks, success, money, fame, or traumatic childhood memories and past experiences, rejection and failure in our personal lives and careers, we may lose our confidence. But how can we regain it? We need confidence to be a good speaker, so how can we build up our confidence again?

One way to gain confidence is to force ourself to step outside of our comfort zone, to do things we normally shy away from. I have always been comfortable with live public speaking, but for some odd reason, whenever there was a camera involved, I would get nervous especially with social media. When I started my minutes on growth instagram page, I didn’t feel comfortable showing my face to strangers and I was hesitant to record videos, I felt more comfortable sharing my words through text, until one day a great friend of mine forced me to step outside of my comfort zone and to record something with her on a topic that was special to us both. While I was super nervous at first, having someone I trusted there helped me overcome my fear. Since then, I’ve recorded many videos and I’ve noticed that my creative mind has been much more active too. I’ve also been feeling much more confident with the message I want to put out there. It’s as if by stepping outside of my comfort zone, more opportunities magically started to emerge.

So today I urge you to think about your confidence levels – how can you enhance your skills – how can you step outside of our comfort zone – is there someone you can reach out to, to help you through it?

We’ve all been given a voice, a unique voice, and a special message to put out there so it’s important for us to confidently use it. 

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon.

Episode 22 – Manifesting

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Hi everyone,

It’s Tannaz and welcome to another episode of minutes on growth. I am going to be doing a workshop on manifesting in a couple of days, so I thought I’d first do a short episode on manifesting our desires. So let’s dive right in. When we talk about manifesting, we are not speaking about going out there and getting something. We are talking about vibrationally vibrating with our desires. This means that we need to embody our desires, mentally, physically, emotionally and spiritually, so that we are vibrating at the same frequency as our desires.

In order to manifest, we first need to ask ourself, what is it that I truly desire – what is it that brings me happiness and joy ? One great way to find out what your soul desires is to ask yourself if those desire hold inspiration and service within them? If you can envision yourself happy and joyful with that desire, then there’s inspiration.

The next step is to make sure that during the manifesting process, we are not focusing on the lack of our desire. For example, If we want love, we need to be loving to ourself and to others, instead of focusing on being lonely. If we want abundance, we need to respect money, instead of focusing and thinking about debt. Once we recognize how manifesting works, and the mindset behind it, then we need to implement the 3 step rule.

The first step is to simply ask, similar to the old saying, ask and you shall receive. Once we’ve asked for our desire, we need to spiritually surrender and allow the universe to take the reins which is the second step. During this time, we need to avoid trying to control or manipulate the outcome and simply allow the universe to do its job. Simultaneously, step 3 comes into place, which instructs us to be open to receiving. In other words, we need to be in a state of joy, and gratitude in order for the universe to be able to deliver our desires into our life. The universe cannot deliver our desires, if we’re vibrating at a low frequency. Energy attracts its likeness, so as long as we’re in that low energy state, our desires will be blocked too.

We have over 50,000 thoughts a day, and if we give any single thought enough time and energy, it can come to fruition. So it’s important to become conscious of our thoughts and the energy we are vibrating at. If we want to attract light and positivity, we need to vibrate at a higher frequency. One way to do that is by practicing gratitude, because gratitude allows us to step inside the realm of positivity and joy. By expressing gratitude, you are simply asking the universe to give you more blessings! Whenever you are grateful for something, is like you’re asking for more of that same thing.

So today let us set the intention to vibrate at higher frequencies and to become more aware of our thoughts, so that we can start co-creating and manifesting our desires.

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon,

Episode 21 – Decluttering Your Mind

Click here to listen to the episode on iTunes.

Hi everyone,

It’s Tannaz and welcome to another episode of minutes on growth. I am going to be doing a workshop on decluttering in a couple of weeks, so I thought I’d first do a short episode on decluttering the mind. What do I mean by decluttering the mind? On average, we tend to have 50,000 thoughts per day. Now, how many of these thoughts do you think are positive? Michael Beckwith from Agape quotes that there are 4 windows of manifestation, and the first window is that your thoughts, opinions, perceptions and beliefs become your reality – so they manifest themselves into your reality – in other words we really need to be conscious of what we are storing inside of our minds as they hold so much power but in order to do that we need to first become aware of what is already there. One way to do that is by looking at areas of our life that are bothering us or ask ourselves if we’re attracting the same negative situations over and over again – To think, am I holding a negative belief about myself or my life or environment? – then look deep into our subconscious and find the root, the seed that we had planted in the past that have lead to this manifestation and attraction. We really need to be not only aware, but also have the courage to put on our evaluation glasses and actually admit some of these truths to ourselves, because once you do so, it makes you accountable for your life – you have to step outside of victimhood and courageously take responsibility for your reality. And once we’re able to identify the beliefs, opinions, thoughts and perceptions that are not empowering us, we can then decide to remove them. When pulling out the self sabotaging seed, we need to be able and willing to forgive ourself for holding on to it in the first place. I always like to use the analogy of gardening – our mind is our garden, so we need to go in there, remove the weeds, forgive ourself for neglecting it, prepare the soil, and replant the flowers and trees that are meaningful and beneficial to us and our growth and purpose. & complete this whole process with compassion and unconditional self love. But then it’s also as important to remember to water our garden, every single day! Why? because if we don’t, they’ll wither and die! If we don’t take care of our garden, weeds will grow. So how do we water our garden? By consciously and consistently journaling, meditating, by taking care of our mental health, our physical health, by surrounding ourself with an empowering and uplifting community,

So tonight before you go to bed, open up your journal and on the top ask yourself ” what negative beliefs, opinions, perceptions and thoughts do I carry with me?” pen to paper.. let the answers flow out of you.

Then ask yourself, what the opposite of those negative statements are and write them down. These are the new positive seeds you’re going to plant.

So for example, for me, one of my negative beliefs was ” only fit girls can succeed in the corporate world” and this stemmed from my father always telling me that only if you’re fit, and look great in a suit, will people take you seriously. So these past couple of years, as I’ve been gained a few pounds, I always felt “not enough” – I thought that because I’m no longer a certain size, I won’t be able to succeed anymore, regardless of all the other things I have to offer. So I had to do this exercise myself – to go in there and to pull it out and replace the belief that was keeping me from living my full potential.

So put on your courageous glasses, go in there, find the weeds, pull them out, replace them with what you want to manifest and remember to water your garden every single day with non-nonjudgement, unconditional love and self-care!

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon,

Episode 20 – Fear

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Hi everyone,

It’s Tannaz and welcome to another episode of minutes on growth. This episode, I want to discuss a word that I have been battling for years, FEAR. For as long as I can remember, I’ve always been scared of something. Growing up it was of getting bitten by dogs, and when I got older, it was of heights. I still don’t know where the fears stemmed from, but I do know that they caused great inconveniences for me growing up. When I was moving away for university,  a family friend of mine pulled me aside and gave me perhaps one of the most life-altering words of advice I have ever received. She said, ” the only thing to fear is fear itself.” As I was checking into my dorm room, I kept reciting that sentence and promised myself that I’d try to tackle my fears, because I did not want to live with regrets when I was older. After months of having numerous pep talks with myself, I decided to go to my friend’s house as she had a dog.  I forced myself to sit next to the dog. Honestly, I couldn’t stop shaking and my hands were so sweaty, but I kept telling myself to hold on for a few more seconds. When I went home that night, I kept reliving that moment. I felt empowered – I had faced my fears and I had survived. Then I suddenly made a decision that changed my life. I went online and started browsing, and hours later I was on the road to an amish county in Pennsylvania to pick up my new puppy! Yes! ME. The girl who was petrified of dogs, was going to become a dog owner within hours. When I picked her up, my face was ghost white and I used a blanket to hold her because my fear was still there! The first week was an absolute comedy show. We kept chasing each other around the house because I still couldn’t get over my fear.. but day by day, I talked myself into shedding away a small piece of it.. and within a week, I was finally holding her and bathing her! She is now a member of my family and I cannot possibly imagine life without her. Once I got over my fear of dogs, I applied the same logic to all my other fears. I faced my fear of heights and jumped out of a plane. I still had not ridden myself completely of the fear so I went bungee jumping. I then went zip lining and recently I went on a one hour hot air balloon ride. I can now say that I am 90% over my fear of heights… I still get a bit scared when I’m on an escalator, but I’m making a conscious decision to go on more of them to finally free myself of it all. The decision I made in university to face my fears changed my life and it taught me  that many of my fears have all been illusions and they hold no merit. I stopped allowing fear to stop me from living life. Instead, I learned to differentiate between fear and caution. When ever I was faced with a hard task, I asked myself if this was fear talking or caution … because if it was the former, I had to rethink it, get to the root of it and face it. In fact, after immigrating when I was 15, I developed a fear of change so ultimately, I had to force myself to move to 4 different countries to study and work to get over it. Was it easy? definitely not, but every time I moved somewhere new I made wonderful friends and memories, and learned so much! The universe truly gifts you unlimited blessings when you live with courage. So today, I ask you to think about your fears. Write them down. Then ask yourself how your fears have stopped you from living. How your fears have impacted your life decisions and goals. Do you really want to live with your fears forever? If not, then take a step forward and face them. I know it seems terrifying at first, but the more you face your fears, the faster fear’s mask will fall off and you’ll realize that it was all an illusion. remember, the only thing to fear is fear itself.

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon.

 

Episode 19 – Decluttering & Organizing Your Home

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Hi everyone,

its Tannaz and welcome to another episode of minutes on growth. Today I want to discuss a topic that has been very relevant in my own life over the past couple of years and that is the art of decluttering and organizing our life, both our physical personal spaces and our mindset, and how vital this act is to your mental health, and for your soul to recharge and rejuvenate.

This episode, I want to focus on and discuss why it is important to declutter our personal space and homes, and more importantly how to do so. So why de-clutter? When decluttering, we have the power to lighten our space and make room for exciting new possibilities. Louise Hay, one of my favourite authors, once said that” our closets can be considered symbols of our minds. a cluttered closet could mean a cluttered mind.”

One of the things I’ve noticed is that people are putting aside big chunks of their time on the weekends to clean their homes, when really the purpose of the weekend is to relax and recharge your soul and family. And while for some people cleaning is very therapeutic,  for many it can feel overwhelming and cause intense stress and anxiety. So how do we remove that feeling from our life and our weekends so that we can truly do what we love to do during our free time without feeling burdened or trapped.

Before we begin, I want to mention that our rooms, homes and personal spaces are sacred spaces and our souls deserve to feel inner peace there. So it is absolutely important to make sure that when we leave our work or school and overall the outside world and step into our homes and rooms, we should feel rejuvenated and calm.

So let’s start. Its obvious to say that if the house is tidy and organized, then you don’t really need to put aside big chunks of time to clean. If we end up putting back everything back to where it belongs right after using it, then theres no need to put aside time to tidy that area. Let me get more specific. We’re going out of the house and we’re trying on clothes, if we put back every piece of clothing that we’re not wearing, instead of just piling them on the chair or on the bed, then when we come back home, we’re not faced with clothes scattered around the room. Or for example you’re on the phone and you need to write something down, so you pick up a pen and piece of paper, but then you forget to put back the pen where it belongs, an action that wouldn’t take more than a couple of seconds, then you’ll end up having to do so on the weekend as a bunch of these seconds accumulate. Putting things right back in their original spot doesn’t take more than a few seconds but can save you hours in the future.But what happens if you don’t have assigned areas for some items? I’ve entered homes where people just scatter their mail on their dining table, kitchen island or console by the door. It’s all over the place because theres not an assigned area for the mail. So it’s as important to make sure you assign spaces. For example, you can use an empty shoebox and place it near the door for all your mail to be placed in there. You’ve allocated a specific place for the mail. This applies to everything. Let’s consider the doorway and hallway as this area seems to be one of the difficult spots in every household. You can assign a space for the shoes, a space for the dog leashes. You can use dividers in your drawers for the stationary, headphones etc. Or Let’s consider your home office or your bedroom where you have a desk. You can use dividers here too to categorize your sheets of paper, and your notes. You can use a jar for your pen. You can use a small saucer for your clips, and pins. So summarize, the first step is to allocate a space for everything and then to remember put back everything where it belongs immediately after you use it. Now when you enter your house, you no longer feel overwhelmed, as everything is where it belongs. And if you have kids and it’s a little bit more difficult, research shows that kids tend to learn best through observing. So once they see you do it, they’ll be more inclined to follow in your footsteps.

I know that there are a few people who thrive in chaotic spaces, however the majority of people do much better when they’re in decluttered, clean, organized and tidy spaces. They can focus better, and achieve more as their space ignites the creativity within them. But for some, they’ve been hoarding and compiling for so long, that they don’t know where to start. Its important to start small. To look around your house and choose on a room you would like to work on. For example, your kitchen. Then take a look at your kitchen and choose one area to work on, a smaller project to work on such as your fridge. Put aside a couple of minutes and go through the fridge. Take a look at the expiration dates and throw out anythings that expired and try to create mini spaces; a section for the fruits, a section for the vegetables, a section for dairy products and so on. This shouldn’t take more than half an hour. Once you’re done with that, then move on to another mini project in your kitchen, such as your condiments and tea cabinet. re-organize it to your liking and convenience. Do not try to do it all at once. Whenever you have some free time, work on one mini project at a time, day by day, week by week. And slowly, over time, those mini projects will complete your large project and In this scenario your kitchen is completely organized, de-cluttered and tidy. Then move on to another room in your house. It didn’t get cluttered over night, so don’t expect to declutter it within a night either. Take your time and be patient.

I’ve also noticed how helpful it can be dedicating 5 minutes every morning or every night to ensuring everything is where it belongs. By dedicating a few minutes everyday I avoid having to dedicate hours on the weekend, It also helps incorporating a more minimalistic approach to life. Over the years, as I’ve accumulated less stuff, its been easier to keep an organized space. I’ve donated and gotten rid of many items I no longer used and the ones that I have kept, I have many a conscious effort to honour their presence in my life by making sure they’re clean and where they belong at all times. I  enjoy honouring my possessions and my home because ultimately its me honouring myself, and honouring my peace of mind, and I cannot tell you how much of a difference its made to my mental health. When I’m home I feel extremely calm and comfortable.

I want to note something though. Everyone’s definition of organized is different and that’s okay. For example, for me its absolutely important that all my clothes are organized by colour, whereas for my partner it’s important that all his clothes in his closet are ironed. So as long as you feel at peace in that space, then that’s all that matters because you’ve accomplished that state of mind, So something that may bother me, may not bother you. So ask yourself what bothers you in your own room or space, and which spaces drain your energy, and create a personalized plan and take it from there.

We live in such a chaotic world . we turn on the news and all we see is chaos. we’re working longer hours and we may feel overwhelmed and burnt out. So it’s absolutely necessary for us to recharge at home, and to have a light space that allows for that to happen. Decluttering can be a very healing and process, so I encourage you to try it.

If you have any specific questions on how and where to start, please don’t hesitate to message me. I’d love to help out.

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon.

 

Episode 18 – Positive Visualization

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Good day everyone, This is Tannaz and welcome back to another episode of Minutes on Growth. Today, I want to discuss a very important topic that came up this week in one of my coaching sessions with a client: the power of positive visualization. 

Metaphysically speaking, We live in a space of vibrating energy that is responsive to how and what we think. Our thoughts are creative forces and are constantly expressing themselves in our lives. When we’re entertaining a thought in our minds, we are in other words visualizing it.

What is visualization, why is it powerful and why is positive visualization important?

Visualization is the formation of a mental image of something – it is a mental rehearsal.

Visualization can be a dangerous tool if not used correctly. Many of us are doing plenty of visualizations everyday whether we know it or not. The problem is that most of us are doing visualizations to create the life we don’t want; we are often using it to imagine the worst case scenarios and outcomes, or we’re using it to worry about all the things that are and could go wrong…  Do you remember a time when you worried so much about something that it actually happened? If so, then you’ve been using visualization to create the life you don’t want. So its important to use the tool in a positive way..

Positive visualization is when you create images in your mind of having or doing whatever it is that you want.This is a mental trick. Rather than hoping you will achieve it, or building confidence that one day it will happen, live and feel it as if it is happening to you now. Why is it important? Because while on one level you know this is just a mental trick, but the subconscious mind cannot distinguish between what is real and what is imagined. Your subconscious will act upon the images you create within, whether they reflect your current reality or not. Along with focus and emotion, visualization becomes a powerful and creative personal development tool that helps us achieve what we want in life.

The benefits of positive visualization are endless. I’d like to share a few: It

✔ Helps you focus better in order to achieve your goals
✔ Inspires and motivates you
✔ Helps you improve in a sport or skill (because when you imagine yourself performing perfectly and doing exactly what you want, you physiologically create neural patterns in your brain, just as if you had physically performed the action. The thought can stimulate the nervous system in the same way as the actual event does.)
✔ Can boost your mood by using positive, pleasant imagery to  alter negative emotions
✔ Helps build self-confidence

Skeptical? Don’t be – Use this experience to let go of doubt: Doubt is resistance, and when you doubt that you will get what you want, it’s as if you are telling the Universe that you are not really sure whether you want it or not. Certainty is the foundation you want to build on…

So want to practice positive visualization?

If you’re one to meditate, then its best to visualize after meditating.. if not then don’t worry about it..Go somewhere where you won’t be disturbed for a while.. Pour yourself a nice cup of tea, put on some relaxing music in the background,  close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and relax – then visualize having it all – this is your canvas so you can have anything you’d like on it – nothing is off limits – want more friends? visualize yourself having tea with a bunch of amazing and authentic group of people … want a bigger house? visualize yourself sipping tea in your dream house .. want a boost in your career? imagine yourself sipping tea in the office or board room of your dreams. Whatever it is that you desire, close your eyes, and visualize yourself having obtained it all.. add emotion, feeling, and your senses to your vision. Feel the joy and excitement you’d feel having succeeded. However, I must note one thing – avoid attaching yourself to a fixed idea of how you believe it should happen – be open and allow the universe to bring In into your life however way it wants to supply you with it. When we get too fixated on the journey, we fail to see alternatives when we face obstacles and more importantly, we may lose sight of the destination. Now that you’ve completed the visualization process, and the goal is introduced to your subconscious mind… take action. Ask yourself: What is one thing I could do today that would help me get closer to my goal? Commit yourself to that goal and don’t give up regardless of the obstacles you may face. Remain positive and fixated on your end result. 

It is super important to have a vision .. to have goals.. to live with purpose and to dream with clarity…and to take the time to remind ourselves and our subconscious mind of why these goals matter to us.. how we’d feel if we accomplished these goals..So use your imagination to see yourself being successful in whatever goal you may have. Remember, the more you visualize, the better it works.

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon

 

Episode 17 – 60 Second Life Changing Habit

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Hey everyone,

This is Tannaz speaking and welcome to another episode of Minutes on Growth. Today I would love to speak about self-judgement, gratitude and daily intentions and how the three are related; I want to talk about what It means to be grateful and how the simple act of expressing our gratitude can bring in immeasurable miracles into our lives. The reason I want to speak about it is because I have witnessed numerous miracles in my life the past couple of weeks. 3 years ago, after graduating from university and leaving the world of academia, I was very confused about the next chapter of my life, and what my journey should be. This confusion led to extreme self criticism. I was always thinking of the next step and the millions things I could be doing that I wasn’t. I was so pre-occupied with judging my every move that I didn’t really spend time to notice my accomplishments and what I had actually been able to do with my time, which proves that I am my worst critic. This detrimental cycle finally came to a stop when I had a wonderful ‘aha’ moment.

A couple of weeks ago, after reading the untethered soul, I realized that I needed to have a firm conversation with someone I spent a lot of time with. So I sat down and had a talk with my inner voice. I asked her to stop talking so much nonsense and to stop judging my every move. I mean she never stops having conversations with me. For those of you who are confused about what I’m talking about, try paying attention to the imaginary conversations you have with yourself all day, especially in the shower. The voice that forces you to react when your partner doesn’t answer your phone calls, or the voice that forces you to react when someone cuts in front of you while driving. Your inner voice, as Michael singer puts it, is like your roommate. Always there. Always talking And most of the time, actually not saying anything worthwhile.

After I became aware of her and asked her to stop, I opened my notebook and wrote down all my accomplishments over the past 36 months  . I realized that during these 3 years, I started my own education consultancy firm, helped my mom start a brand new business, volunteered and fundraised for various local and international organizations, travelled to new countries, completed writing my first children’s book, started my own book club and of course started Minutes on Growth. If I was so busy doing all this, how did I really have that much time left to judge myself? Well that’s your inner voice’s super power – to always judge and criticize you even when you’re actually doing something! To prevent you from being in the moment and actually celebrating your victories. Now that I was aware and conscious of what was going on, I vowed to make a conscious effort to not allow and limit this harmful self-judging practice. I wanted to stop always chasing the next moment out of fear. Of course it is never good to get too comfortable with where you are and its important to always have goals and a desire to grow, however there are other ways to motivate yourself besides fear and self-judgment. One way to do that is by expressing gratitude for where you are. When you are grateful for what you have and where you are in your life, you are practically telling the universe that if you send more miracles and blessings my way, I am open to them and more importantly I am able to acknowledge and appreciate them. You are allowing the universe to bring in what you need to get one step closer to your goals. Doing this every morning and every night has been a life changer for me. truthfully I don’t meditate every morning – some mornings I really just don’t have the time or I’m just simply not in the mood. but what I never miss doing, is immediately after my wash, as I am standing in front of my bathroom mirror is saying out loud 2 things which I am grateful for in that moment. it can be something as simple as having hands to wash my face with or having air-conditioning when its 40 degrees Celsius out.. And then comes step 2: which is setting 2 intentions for the day – goals that are do-able and realistic which I intent to accomplish that day. By doing this, 1- you let the universe know that you’re grateful for all that it has given you. 2- you let the universe know that you are taking action and that you are committed to growth. Ive noticed that by expressing gratitude and setting intentions in the morning, my day has more clarity and purpose. Once I get the 2 intentions done, I pat myself in the back and express gratitude to myself for actually doing them. And somehow the universe has been kind enough to allow more wonderful blessings to come my way. I’m not saying that all my short and long term goals have been fulfilled, but the journey is about focusing on one day at a time and being present during the day and being grateful during the day and having daily intentions and having snippets of daily growth . The detrimental self-judging cycle automatically converts to a healthy loving and supportive cycle. This isn’t some mambo jumbo that I’m making up. it is something that I have tested and which has worked out for me. Ever since doing so, I’ve noticed I’m naturally coming up with creative ideas on how to take my life’s purpose to the next level and that the world has become a much more supportive environment. I hope that you’ll incorporate this simple 60 second habit in your day and I hope that you stop allowing your inner critic from constantly judging you and preventing you from allowing the light in. Today embrace non-judgement, gratitude and the beautiful art of setting meaningful, do-able and realistic daily intentions.

Thank you for listening and talk to you soon.

 

Episode 16 – Mental Health

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Hi everyone, its Tannaz Hpour and Welcome to a new episode of Minutes on Growth. Last week was mental health awareness week in the United Kingdom and I thought that I would dedicate this episode to mental health. When we break our arm, the majority of us won’t think twice about going to the hospital and getting an Xray or when we catch a cold we might go see a doctor, or we might immediately incorporate more vitamin C fruits and herbal teas into our diet. The point is that with physical health we take action. Most of the times it is an immediate action, but the same can’t be said about mental health. Having good mental health impacts the quality of your life. When you go through a period of poor mental health, you might find the ways you’re frequently thinking, feeling or reacting become difficult or even impossible to cope with.  While I am so pleased that many countries and organizations are incorporating mental health awareness week into their agendas, a lot of work still needs to be done. We need to address the stigma around mental health and remove it as a taboo subject in our society. The only way we can do so is by talking about it and raising awareness. I mean, I have been to countries where there are still people who think that you should only see a therapist if you are crazy, and societies that dismiss anxiety and depression as real issues. My parents got separated when I was a teenager, and because they had a civil break up I never thought that I was impacted by it. A couple of months after their separation, I headed to a new country to commence my undergraduate studies. I started drinking heavily and one weekend I ended up passing out. I woke up in the hospital feeling terrified and alone. My university had a policy for underage drinking which stated that in the event where an incident occurs where the ER is involved, the student must complete 2 therapy sessions. During the first session, I realized that I had unresolved issues inside myself. I found out that there was anger and pain within me. I didn’t quite comprehend where the root of my issues lied. I always thought that I had a normal upbringing, and my parents were both relatively active in my childhood, so I wondered why I felt the way that I did. once my mandatory sessions finished, I started to look for a therapist that I felt comfortable with and started therapy. its been almost a decade since and I still have a therapist that I communicate with when life feels dark and I need some light, insight and inspiration.

There are so many different types of mental health problems out there such as depression, anxiety and panic attacks, anger, phobias, eating disorders, borderline personality disorder, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, Post traumatic stress disorder, paranoia, bipolar disorder, sleep problems, stress, self-esteem, self harm, and many more. Some of these have similar symptoms so you may experience the symptoms of more than one mental health problem or be given several diagnoses at once, or you might not have any particular diagnosis but still be finding things very difficult. everyone’s experience is different and can change at different times. It is important for us to talk about them, to feel comfortable addressing them, and most importantly to be kind and patient with ourselves as we figure it out. There are ways for us to help ourselves as well. For example, by staying aware of your mental health, nourishing your social life, trying out peer support, making time for the therapeutic activities, looking after your physical health and even contacting specialist organizations. Moreover, there are many treatments available such as talking treatments, cognitive behavioral therapy, Arts and creative therapies, complementary and alternative therapies, and even medication.

I just wanted to give a few examples of how to self-care when facing different problems. With depression, you can try to talk to someone you trust, or try peer support. Peer supports brings together people who have had similar experiences to support each other and many have found that it helps them share ideas about how to stay well, connect with others and feel less alone. You can also try mindfulness and meditation, look after your physical health ( which includes getting good sleep, having a good diet, looking after your hygiene, doing some physical activity and avoiding recreational substance use). It can also be useful to keep a mood diary so that you can track any changes in your mood and  notice if any activities places or people make you feel better or worse. You can also try to spend time in nature, many have found that some time away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life can be calming. Looking after yourself and doing things that you enjoy can help support your recovery and improve the quality of your life. For those suffering from anxiety all the above work too and you can incorporate breathing exercises into your daily lives. Take time to inhale and always remember to breathe. It’s the simplest thing but we tend to forget it in panic attacks. If you are having trouble sleeping at night as a result of anxiety, depression, or stress, you can take action by giving yourself some tech free time before bedtime, by establishing a routine where for example you only enter your bed when you’re feeling tired and waking up at a specific time, or by doing something calming such as listening to relaxing music, having a bath, doing breathing exercises, muscle relaxation, visualization, or meditation at Night. If you are unable to go to therapy, there are many wonderful organizations out there that provide Materials on these issues. I obtained most of this information from Mind Organization UK. There are also many Community groups that you can join, or if you tight on time , there are many social media accounts led by certified life coaches, spiritual teachers, and psychologists that offer valuable advice on their platforms.

Do not worry. You are not alone. Mental health problems are a common human experience. They can happen all kinds of people from all walks of life. And it’s likely that when you find a combination of self-care, treatment, and support that works for you, you will get better.

Thank you for listening, talk to you soon.

 

Episode 15 – Accountability and Consistency

Please click here to listen to the episode on iTunes. 

Hi Everyone,

This is Tannaz Hosseinpour and welcome back to Minutes on Growth.The last time I recorded, I mentioned that due to personal reasons, I had taken a break from recording. I thought that my writing could take a break until all my life problems had disappeared. Well, today marks 8 months since that decision, and I am pleased to announce that not much has changed since in regards to my circumstances and that my decision was the wrong one. In fact, life even got crazier. My partner got sick, I lost my grand father and then I got sick. It seems as if, every single time I want to get life back to quote on quote “how it was”, it not only doesn’t happen but more events turn to unfold as well. Which made me realize that we will never reach a point in our lives where we can completely control the outside forces. We can however control how we feel about them and how we treat them on the inside. Waiting for the perfect moment is a waste of time and can in fact lead to anxiety. We’re constantly looking forward to tomorrow, the next week, the future. We fail to actually live in the moment, the present moment. We end up putting off our worries, but just like how it was when we were in school, you can put off studying for that exam, but you’re eventually going to have to study for it the night before, which only creates more stress and anxiety. So why not live it as it happens, why not live life as it occurs. But easier said than done right? How can I be okay on the inside when I lose a loved one? I realized that it is not necessarily about being okay but there are two factors that one should never forget in life: accountability and consistency. It is about realizing that you may not be responsible for everything that happens in your life from the outside, but you are responsible for your actions and your thoughts and your feelings, after all they are YOURS. It is about realizing that I am responsible for how I react to situations, I am responsible for how I feel, for how I think. Once you start taking responsibility and accountability for yourself, you tend to notice your attitude changing towards yourself. A bit harsh no? I mean all that responsibility can get a bit overwhelming and sometimes we just want to run away from it all. I know I have. But we can’t live in fear of responsiblity and in victim mode forever. We can’t put our lives on hold forever. We’re here for a purpose. We need to go forward.  I mean at this very moment, I have a major back spasm that has limited my mobility for over a month, but I can’t use it as an excuse to not record, especially since I don’t really need to walk to do it. Your life is like your business and you’re like the CEO. Your business plan consists of your goals and visions for the company. Are you going to navigate it towards growth and prosperity or towards bankruptcy and closure? Are you going to allow a few bad clients to force you to give up? Are you going to fight with all your employees? Are you going to place all your energy and focus constantly thinking about all the ways your company is going to fail and be extremely critical of all its components ? I doubt it. All businesses go through ups and downs, but are you going to shut down your company until things settle or are you going to try and figure it out? I doubt that too because you’re responsible for the business and the jobs you’ve created and you don’t want all that investment of time and money to go to waste. You don’t want to throw away your vision for the company. It is the same with our lives, however, somehow, we don’t apply the same standards to our lives. Well we should. Once we’re able to take responsibility, it is about showing up to those responsiblities every single day, and that’s where consistency comes into place. It is about waking up every morning and being consistent with your words and promises to yourself. (Don’t get me wrong, sometimes it is absolutely impossible to do so, but it is important to remember that even on those days, it is important to try. You may not be able to perform like you usually do, but the intention of trying is all that matters). It’s realizing that regardless of what is happening in my life, I will continue my commitments, not because I have to, but because I want to and I am going to try my best to do so. I want to stay loyal to myself. I want to be the best CEO of my life that I can be. I will go to the gym, I will finish that book, I will continue recording episodes, I will continue giving my energy to my job, I will make the effort to be a conscious and aware co-worker, friend, partner, sibling, parent, daughter. What I am going through is hard and difficult, but I know I can go through it, I know that I won’t let it derail me off my journey and even if it does, I will get back on track because I will show up to my life. I will honour my promises to myself. I will honour my commitment to myself and my life. I know that I cannot control what happens in this life, but I can control how I face it. I can control how I live my life, and I will live It and face it with courage and determination for growth. So Today’s affirmation for me will be “I will show up to my own life with courage” and every time I get nervous or anxious that my life is spiralling out of control, I will just take a deep breath and repeat those words to myself.

Thank you all for listening, Talk to you soon

 

Episode 14 -Anxiety

Click here to listen to the episode

Hi Everyone,

This is Tannaz Hosseinpour and welcome to Minutes on Growth. I always want my words to come from a place of clarity and true self-reflection hence why it has been a while since I last recorded.  On this episode I want to discuss anxiety, in particular anxiety that is caused by lying.I want to share a very personal story with you. I have a couple of tattoos, and my father who is quiet traditional in this one aspect, never really approved of them. However, I have this one tattoo on my shoulder that I got when i was 15 and have since hid it from him (thats more than a decade) Over time he has seen my other tattoos, so it wasn’t as if he did not know about their presence all together, its just that he did not know about this one. Throughout these years, every single time we would go swimming or on vacations at resorts, I would have to take the extra step to pack a swimming suit that covered it. Or when I would go out with him, to ensure that I wore long sleeves. sometimes even in the summer, and all of this would make me feel anxious. Those close to me were aware of this and would constantly ask me what the difference between this tattoo and the rest are. I never really had an answer, I just felt that it was different and this difference was causing me a lot of anxiety.

This summer my brother was visiting me for about 2 months, and during this time, I traveled for a few days and he remained with my father. When I returned, he came up to me out of the blue and said ” By the way, Dad knows about all your tattoos so you can stop hiding them”. At that moment, hearing those words, I felt this wave of anxiety drowning me. I got super nervous and started rambling about how my father must have been disappointed and worried about how he would react with me. Mind you, I’ve been living alone for almost a decade, I have more own career and life, but at that moment i sounded like the 15 year old girl who had just gotten that tattoo. I remember when I did get it, I ingrained this idea into my head that if my father ever saw it, he would think less of me. So that childhood belief stayed with me, and every time I would think about the tattoo, I would act like the 15 year old Tannaz.

Anyways, as i was panicking, My brother was just staring at me, looking confused and thinking to himself why I was acting like this. He couldn’t understand where i was coming from..and truthfully now that i think of it, i don’t even understand where I was coming from. I had taken this one tattoo on my shoulder and had made it into such a big deal in my own head, and i had lived moments, days feeling anxious when I was in my father’s presence, when all this time he knew about it. The moral of the story is, when you’re lying, hiding a secret or you think you’re hiding a secret, ask yourself, by doing so, does it make you feel anxious? If so, is it worth it? Is the reality of being honest as bad as you think it is? The answers are personal to you, but for me, I just wasted so many days feeling negative and anxious for absolutely no reason. It’s important to every once in a while look into our lives, and re-evaluate the factors that make us feel anxious. Can we do something about them? I am grateful to my brother for doing what he did. It’s interesting to notice how children are more comfortable with being honest and how that impacts their life’s level of ease. As we age, we tend to over complicate things and over-think,  when we really should just take a moment and try to live life like a child with honesty, courage and simplicity.

Thank you for listening and i hope to talk to you all soon,