Do unto others…

…as you would have them do unto you.

The idea of treating people as you’d want to be treated is all good and well in theory.

But when it comes down to the crunch, is it what you practice in your day to day life.

When people talk about this topic of how we should treat other people, often they’re thinking of how they want to be treated. Yet the same kindness, respect, honestly, understanding and patience is not extended to others.

It doesn’t mean that you’re cruel to people, it could be something as small as not holding the door open for people but expecting others to do it for you.

Sometimes it’s intentional and sometimes it’s by accident. But when you catch yourself treating someone in a way you would not want to be treated, change your behavior.

2 pieces of career advice

In a recent conversation where two people were giving career advice, I noticed a wide gap between their perspectives.

The first person spoke about doing something you were interested in, gaining a qualification and working hard to be a specialist in your field.

The second person just spoke about picking a career in a field where jobs were widely available.

The first person was focused on achievent whilst the second was focused on fear.

Based on the kind of life that I want, if I had to pick one of the two pieces of advice, I’d go with the first persons.

As much as stability is important so is enjoying (or at least liking) what you do.

Sometimes you don’t need advice

I am a firm believer that in almost every moment, you know exactly what you need to do and exactly what decisions you want to make.

So often we see advice from others because we feel stuck or get overwhelmed by possibility and uncertainty. However, what I’ve learnt even is that when you allow yourself to get swept up in the situation it becomes difficult to navigate.

Think of a boat out at sea, once it gets swept up in the waves the boat has very little control.

Or lets take it back to a previous analogy of a boat with no oars, that was the idea of how little control you have without a sense of direction. In this case it’s more about settling your mind and letting the answers come to you instead of seeking them out.

In my experience, in quiet moments I am able to gain answers or clarification on situations where I previously felt like I didn’t know what to do.

It’s something that you have access to if you want to use it but you have to trust that you are capable of figuring out the situations you encounter.

Too late to start over

Most of us have at some point looked back on our life and perhaps not wished but thought about what would have happened if we took a different path.

If you applied for that job in another city.

If you moved out of your family home sooner or maybe done it later.

If you started that project when you first had the idea instead of sitting on it for months.

If you didn’t settle for what the people around you told you to do for a career.

If you hadn’t been willing to accept so little from the people around you.

When you’re not happy with where you’re at, looking back on the choices you’ve made will rarely make you happier. But you do it because you feel like it’s too late to start over.

It might not be true but that’s how it often feels.

When you’ve set yourself up on a particular path, starting over and changing the course of your life feels too risky. It feels like all that came before was time wasted.

But if you want to give yourself the opportunity to be happier and more fulfilled, then perhaps starting over might be one of the best things you can do for yourself.

How to figure out what you want?

This is a topic that has been on many peoples minds mainly because we’ve all had much more time to think about our lives over the past few months.

For a lot of people what they want is actually what they think they want because it comes from other people. When you’re constantly being told what you should want and what you should do with your life it’s no wonder you don’t know your own mind.

It’s in the quiet moments where external influences have fallen away that you’ll figure out what you want. It’s like when people say they get their best ideas in the shower. When you’re alone with little distraction, your mind can finally relax and peacefully wander.

One of the biggest distractions in this day and age is social media. You can spend a few hours online and come away thinking you want to create fashion content, be a painter, start a podcast, work in marketing, start a project for your local community, be a graphic designer, start a youtube channel, make music, be a makeup artist, be a textile artist, start a band, be a poet, be an artist and so much more.

Granted you could be interested but when you constantly surround yourself with other peoples stuff it makes it harder to figure out what you want for yourself.

I’ve found that trying new things is invaluable, to be able to say I tried painting and it wasn’t for me but I really like sculpting. So often we try one thing and then get frustrated if it doesn’t work out as though their aren’t over 101 other options for things to try. How are you meant to know what you want if you haven’t tried anything.

Secondly switching off and embracing quite moments is the perfect way to get more in tune with yourself. I’ve found myself most inspired when I’m gazing at the sunset, taking a walk or crafting whilst the sounds of Litany, Montaigne and Hayley Mary drift through the air.

Lastly, give it time.

Learning from mistakes

In the moment missing a day of daily blogging feels like failure but in the grand scheme of things I know it’s not that bad.

If you look at it one way missing 8/365 days isn’t much at all.

But on the other hand can you really call yourself a daily blogger if you don’t post every single day.

When I first started daily blogging it really bothered me when I missed a day, mainly because it was never intentional. It frustrated me that I could forgot to post and not realise until the next day and by then it was too late.

Luckily, I’ve now realised that when you make a mistake if you focus on learning from it instead of getting mad at yourself it’s much less likely to happen again.

And of course this applies to so much more than just blogging

How to be more productive

If you ever find yourself wanting to be productive but struggling to get things done, here’s a simple solution.

Get the materials you need, go somewhere where you won’t be disturbed, start and don’t stop until the task is complete.

Being productive isn’t as complicated as we often make it.

Of course if you’re sitting with your fave show on and your phone at your side the task you’re working in will take much longer than it needs to. You have to allow your mind to focus.

Once you take away the distractions, you might start off slow but you’ll build up momentum and find yourself working much more efficiently.

Slowly building

Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither were helpful habits.

If you want to start reading more, getting up at 6am every morning, eating more nourishing food or committing to your creative projects, one day won’t make a difference on it’s own.

It’s a series of days, one by one, bit by bit that make the real difference.

One day isn’t enough to build a habit but that’s where things start. That one day will become 30 days and then 90 until that thing you’ve been doing each day is now part of your daily routine.

When you’re getting started, it’s worth remembering that change takes time. Don’t be disappointed after 3 days if you don’t feel like it, your brain is still getting used to your new way of doing things. Instead focus on it one day at a time and remember that you’re working towards something long-term.

And on days when you don’t feel like practicing your new habit, it won’t matter in the short-run but in the long run you’ll probably be glad you committed to it.

The importance of a working from home routine

I believe that a new way of working requires a new routine. Up until the past couple of months most people that worked  9-5 office jobs spent most of their days in the office. However, that has now changed we are (pretty much) all working from home.

One of the things that many have overlooked is implementing a routine for working at home. Most of us have a particular routine for days in the office, whether it’s the time we get up in the morning, preparations we do the night before, the time we start working and the time we log off.

You need that sort of routine for working at home too. It doesn’t need to be exactly the same, but you can’t expect to work at home the same way you do in the office if your day has no sense of structure.

Something as simple as starting and ending your day at the same time each day can work wonders.

It may not seem important to implement this and maybe you want home to be more fluid and free. However, it turns out that without some structure to your day you’ll be more likely to work longer hours and you’ll probably be much less productive.

The challenge of representation

How do you include everyone?

It’s not as simple as black and white although in some cases that might seem like enough. I suppose I’ve learnt and am learning that it’s about having minorities be seen.

Sometimes people make the mistake of being bare minimum. They use a sea of sameness with one person that’s ‘other’ in order to look like they’re being inclusive. In reality they might just be trying to tick a box.

But it’s not always straight forward because when you’re used to only focusing on one type of person, how do you grow away from that authentically?

And then we have to ask the question of what’s authentic anyway and who decides?

I’m online enough to know that everyone is a critic these days and people only need to see a glimpse of something to get the pitchforks ready and call you out.

If a brand went from showing one type of person to a wider variety people will day they’re jumping on the bandwagon or that it’s not enough because what about xyz.

It’s easy to be critical but it’s worth asking yourself if it’s actually helping or if you’re just adding to the noise.