If we look at the history of warfare, it has hardly ever brought anything positive.
It was always about bloodshed, destruction and forcing your will upon somebody else’s.
Isn’t it interesting that we still haven’t learned that if we keep repeating the same things over and over again, and expecting different results, that’s INSANITY, according to Einstein.
So it’s time we start to fight with different weapons. That we start to fight a different kind of fight.
Watch my newest video below:
It’s a nice and quiet evening. The fireplace is spreading a comfortable warmth throughout the living room and good smells come from the kitchen. After a long working day it’s good to relax and spend some quality time with the family. The dog is asking for her evening food. The cats installed themselves in a comfortable chair appreciating the fireplace whilst, in all their kindness, accepting that some human beings share the house with them.
Nice music is playing and the candles have been lit. Curtains closed, all nice and cozy.
Just like that the vibe in the house changes from relaxed and comfy into action.
Whatever the plans were, they’ve now changed.
Whatever you were doing, just drop it.
It’s the sound that calls the first responder into action. In no time she changed into her uniform and runs out of the door. In the meantime he pulled her car from the parking, leaving it with the engine running and the door open so she can leave as fast as possible.
Someone is in danger, someone needs help!
When the “Beep-beep! Beep-beep!” calls, it’s time to run, not to ask questions. Then it’s time to act, not to hesitate.
Whilst she jumps in the car, he shouts “Go and make a difference” to encourage her. The adrenaline pumps through her veins, fair chance she doesn’t even hear it. Off she goes, decisive into the unknown, prepared for the unexpected.
He slowly walks back to the house. Clueless when she’ll be back. Clueless how she’ll be back because, some of the incidents she’s been called to, made a deep impact on her. Like when holding that crying girl who watched her way too young mother die. Or when 3 youngsters had to be pulled out of a car after it crashed.
Sometimes he even wonders if she’ll come back. Since some who go for the rescue, become a victim themselves…
Nevertheless they run! All these first responders they run from their homes into the unknown yet on a mission. The mission is to save lives and reduce suffering. Don’t you think that deserves tons of respect from society? In many cases these first responders are even volunteers who felt a calling. The calling to save lives.
Yet sometimes, society isn’t able to give the respect the heroes in ambulances and firetrucks deserve. Let’s not forget the heroes from the police!
They deserve respect and all the space to do their work. It’s absurd some people think it’s a good idea to hinder their work. To offend or even threaten them. In extreme cases, the ones coming for the rescue become the victims because of violence from the public.
When these thoughts cross his mind both sadness, anger and fear fill his heart. He turns around to just see the red lights of her car disappearing into the night.
He whispers, “Go and make a difference”. Now he adds “Come home safely”.
I know this story very well. Because “she” is my wife.
© 2021 Alex Verlek van Tienhoven
Today on my morning hike I got this annoying feeling: “Bummer. I’m kind of stuck here. For months I’m not getting any further than 10 kilometers from my house. Either for a walk or to buy groceries.”
Whilst I was thinking about that all of the sudden a little tune got back into my head.
A tune sang by a cartoon figure named Alf from the late 80’s which shifted my perspective in no time.
Watch it below. Feel free to join me for the singing part 😉
P.S. Here is my invitation for you today: Will you think of a cartoon figure or an animal or anything that inspires you that will help you to find a different perspective on how you look at this current situation? I’m really curious to hear what you will come up with. Feel free to leave a comment below.
I started my 2020 with climbing the 2000 meters high mountain near my house.
I have to admit it took a lot of effort, but I got up there. And the moment I got up there was a moment of victory, a victory mainly over myself.
Who knew back then that just a few of months later, I would end up in hospital with a seriously herniated disc, very little strength in the right leg and foot, unable to walk.
From an active man, that day mowing the lawn, to being taken to hospital by ambulance and wheeled into the Intensive Care.
Due to Covid, no visits possible. So here I was, alone, afraid and fragile…with my legs not moving. To top it off, my doctor told me that I’d never garden nor hike as I was used to AGAIN..
Long story short, last weekend and only 10 months later I was BACK UP that mountain!
The way up there?
On my knees, in the ambulance; intensive care; by the hand of the physiotherapist, behind a walker, on crutches, 500 meter, 5 km, a few hours, ups & downs and that day, step by step all the way up. Tears of gratitude and so f*cking happy!!
P.S. If you are curious about my journey, here it is:
I was not allowed to have an argument or fight with my siblings when I grew up.
My mom’s words: “Kids, don’t fight!” are sometimes still echoing in my head.
I get it when one is raising 4 small children that this can be a real pain and it takes a lot to keep things under control.
Yet what I’ve noticed is how these words are influencing me being in conflicts in my relationships. With my friends, family, also in my romantic relationship.
As we are talking about romantic relationships..
A lot has changed in 2021. Many of us are locked up in a little box called ‘our house’. It’s almost inevitable that more conflict than ever before is happening in your house.
You’re locked up with your loved ones. Yet everybody is lacking space and breathing time as they are trying to do their best to re-adjust to the new reality.
If you then have an idea that you can not be in a conflict, this can lead to additional challenges & frustrations.
My point is that we have to learn how to be in a conflict. Especially in our romantic relationships. With the conflict being a healthy & inevitable part of our relationships.
I share my reflections with you in the short video below:
P.S. By the way, the brand new, specially designed ‘Conflict Transformation Model’ is one of the coaching tools I will be presenting during my online masterclass held on the 19th of February 2021. Just 3 tickets are left. This Masterclass is also accredited by ICF (3,5 CCEU´s).
Today I’d like to speak with you about a really cool paradox. Paradox between two words: NOW and HISTORY.
For a long time I thought that these words have nothing in common. That they were maybe even excluding each other.
Whilst reflecting on it, I realized that these words have a lot to do with each other. They are like family!
We coaches like to speak about being in the NOW. The intriguing part here is that what happens in the NOW actually is writing our history.
Yes, history is something that happened in the past. Yet when we wrote history, that was a NOW back then.
The moment where you decided, for instance, to say YES to somebody or NO to something, that exact moment you took a decision which wrote part of YOUR history.
The more conscious we are in the NOW, the more we would like the story that we create. The story that at some point in our lives we will call our history.
So here is my invitation: when you want to write history, take a moment to reflect on how you want to show up in the HERE and NOW.
I share my reflections with you in my new short video.
Watch it below.
P.S. When you’ve had a chance to watch it, I’d love to hear from you what the story is you want to write through your choices right here, right now. Leave a comment below and let me know.
Towards the end of 2020, I came to the conclusion: Man, I´m tired!
I´m not just tired. I´m sometimes also frustrated. 2020 was a HEAVY year!
When I shared my feelings with other people and they shared theirs, I came to a conclusion; the word is tired.
Looking at the recent events, the world is not just tired. The world is not just frustrated.
The world is ANGRY! There is a lot of anger in the world right now.
We’ve now seen that anger can be expressed in ways above & beyond our imagination…
I’ve started to reflect what we as coaches can do to support people that we meet on our path who have the same struggles of tiredness, anger & frustration.
This is why today I shot a new video where I want to share my reflections with you.
Watch it below.
P.S. When you’ve had a chance to watch it, I’d love to hear from you. What do you need so you can hold the space of warmth, safety, love & respect to support those who struggle? To avoid that it has to be expressed in such a destructive and shameful way. Feel free to leave a comment on this blog and share your thoughts.
What a Year!
2020 has been a challenging year for everybody. I had my fair share of challenges as well.
In March / April I was in intensive care with a seriously herniated disk. I’m ending the year with a couple of broken ribs. Yep, clumsy is my middle name : -)
My business had challenges and it was blessed.
Privately I had challenges and I was blessed.
What I’ve learned in this year and I want to pass it on to you as an intention for the coming year is that:
“It isn’t the circumstances that decide how we feel about things, it is how we look at it. It is our mindset.”
I’ve recorded a special New Year’s video for you.
It takes just 4 minutes.
In the meantime, may your heart be filled with courage & strength.
P.S. Once you’ve had a chance to watch it, I’d love to hear from you. What energy do you want to bring to your upcoming year? What are your thoughts? Your wishes? Your longings? Your fears? What energy are you intending to give to 2021? Feel free to leave a comment on this blog and share your thoughts.
According to the Dalai Lama, gratitude is the birthplace of joy and that JOY IS our purpose.
Gratitude, what a precious word. Many of us long to be able to say they’re grateful and do their utmost to get there. I have a question: “Before striving for something new to be grateful for, what do you already have to be grateful for? As in, NOW?”
My invitation is to seriously explore this question before you hit the ‘purchase’ button on weird days like Black Friday or, the Chinese version ‘Singles Day’.
Looking up the numbers of how much we collectively spend on these days, blew me away. Billions and billions! And the amount is growing every single year. Singles Day 2019 topped off the year before with 25% and the numbers of 2020 are just beyond imagination.
With Black Friday and Christmas on our doorstep, we have a chance. A chance to consciously choose and make a difference by moving from greed to gratitude.
The Alibabas and the Amazons of this world have already filled their pockets. I guess they even had to order big buckets in their own store since their pockets were overflowing…
Sorry, a few more statistics.
A few more years and Amazon’s owner is worth $200 billion. You figure out how many zeros that are… Yet, for instance, in the UK an ‘impressive’ 2,1% of taxes was paid on their profit…
The bottom-line is that the rich keep getting richer and in this challenging year this gets underlined more and more. The small shop owners need to close whilst the online sales grow exponentially. This is where we can make a difference! If we allow a heart filled with gratitude to speak, instead of with greed. Sorry, to me it feels days like Black Friday are to a large extent based on greed and not so much on gratitude. Greed is not the way to joy, gratitude is, remember?
Aren’t we grateful for that cute little shop where they still know what ‘service with a smile’ means? That lovely couple running their shop because they are passionate about their products? With their kids playing in the back of the shop? Who will open after hours to give you that one thing you forgot? Don’t you love them?
Well, these are the ones who struggle big time at this very moment! They had to close and had to see their turn over completely disappear. You do the math, how many zeros that is…
If you choose to buy at the big online shops, fine! Yet you can make a huge difference to spend the same amount buying stuff from your favorite small shop! If you still want them to be there next year, you have to keep them alive! NOW!
Buy gift certificates and give them away for Christmas. The cash from your gift certificate will help them to even make it to Christmas!
That small restaurant, that is trying to survive by selling take-aways? Ask them to send you an invoice for a couple of hundred and pay it today! You want to sit on their terrace next spring? They need your cash NOW to make it to next spring.
I am sure you can come up with other creative ideas to make a difference and help people get through these challenging times. Like this Scandinavian furniture giant; they refuse to join Black Friday and instead they ask their customers to bring back the furniture they don’t use anymore so they can give it to those in need. What do you have that you never use anymore which you could give away to a family in need?
Every amount, however small, you can miss to make somebody else’s life a bit brighter can transform Black Friday into Gratitude Friday.
What does it take from you, to move from greed to gratitude? The answer might lead you to your path of JOY…
© November 2020, Alex Verlek
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