Category Archives: Personal

Pure Heart

Pure Heart

Let me tell you something about doing what’s right. Not many people are capable of it, because sometimes doing what’s right can cause conflict between your wants and needs, and that’s the reason why doing the right thing can seem so inconvenient and uncomfortable.

People who are pure at heart do the right thing even when it may seem the most foolish thing to do. It can cause them hurt and pain, years of sacrifice, yet they cannot back away from such opportunities, big or small, because their conscience wouldn’t allow them to.

I’m talking about random acts of kindness, helping a loved one or putting complete strangers first. Empathising with what another person is going through and risking your well-being so that that soul can find, even temporary, peace.

We live in a world that has lost its values.

We are surrounded by those who either claim they’re doing good by others, or those who expect to learn about the “good people” populating our world through newspaper articles and tv shows (I honestly doubt that’s where we find them).

A pure heart should be kept secret, it should never be turned into some sort of publicity stunt, news story or sympathy campaign among friends, as it never seeks approval or trophies.

That neighbour we criticise could be that someone, cause God forbid a disreputable soul should find out where that type of Soul resides.

… maybe what I’m saying isn’t true, but I must admit I’d like to think they’re just hiding.

 

WM

Don’t run away from who you want to be

youmustbethechange

Stop hating and start living. Do it for you.

 

… and I thought I was a loner. I had convinced myself something was wrong with me, I mean there must have been something wrong with me, for those people I hoped to encourage and gave my affection to seemed to get further and further away from me. Not running, simply walking away and then fading into oblivion. Yet I hadn’t done anything wrong to them. You see, you can put all your heart into helping others, trying to do your best to comfort,advice or console them, you can try to honestly be happy for them and rejoice with them, set an example to follow for them… but you may just not get anything in return or it could all just backfire.

I personally started by setting an example for myself because I only got bits and pieces from my own life. I wanted to have someone to look up to so I started looking, hungrily searching and finding some answers to all those questions that needed answering to. Had I completely misplaced my values? Was I to blame for being who I am? Was I a bad person to speak my mind?  Did I really feel or act superior towards those people who were a part of my life? Had I  unwillingly made them uncomfortable with my big ego?

I’m proud to say I nurture values and put loyalty and honesty above all. I fight rage and I fight temptation, so much that nothing really tempts me anymore (except for good food). I’ve won the battles against jealousy and envy easily throughout my life, but it hurts me to say that by setting the example for myself  I feel that to others I have become some sort of control freak regarding my emotions. I now find it hard to relate to people who are constantly looking for my weak spots (I do have many) and thinking my life is all about THEM and not about myself. In a way I’m actually quite selfish so I do things for myself and to myself generally. I certainly don’t trust “them” anymore.  I find it hard to pretend I don’t see resentment in the looks people give me or in their attitude towards me. I don’t think they actually realise or want to feel that way towards me, but I find it hard to believe anyone cares for me when all they’re doing is waiting to see me fail and do the “AHAAA you fail miserably too and that makes me feel great about myself now!” dance.

Let me assure you, I am all human, but failure is not what I’m about … and it’s not what you’re about either.

I don’t believe any of us can ever fail. I wish that you could all see this clearly. If your intentions are good and your conscience is truly clear you can’t fail in life, it is close to impossible. You can’t even make mistakes in life let alone “fail in life” (we make the decisions we make knowingly and whatever just cameupoutoftheblue is not our responsibility – #let’sfaceit). But when the shit hits the fan (and it will cause nobody is perfect) you can hold your head high and carry on, knowing deep down inside you did what you did for the right reasons at the time, and who cares you couldn’t make things work! so what you didn’t get what you deserved, expected or wished for! You’re not a fortune teller, you can’t know these things so don’t beat yourself up for you are your worst enemy.

Don’t be afraid of life and don’t feel ashamed if things don’t go the way you planned. There is nothing to be afraid or ashamed of. Life is full of surprises, good and bad. Simply embrace who you are and be your own competition. Fight for yourself, stand up for yourself, be the best friend you’d always hoped to have (chances are you’ll never find that type of friend anyway – all one can do is hope- truestory), so YOU be THAT person!

Stop hating and start living. Be the change you want to see in the world – Gandhi

 

How much has beauty got to do with success or fame?

How much has beauty got to do with success or fame?

meri funny facesYou’d think one might consider it a gift, and easy entry… and yet.

Speaking from personal experience, the little that I have, my good looks have always been noticed at the most unflattering times.

After a concert:

Audience member: wow, congratulations, you’re a good..

Musician: Yeah, I know, she’s hot, isn’t she? O.o

Music contest:

Judge: hey you have a wonderful voice, but that dress!

hmmm, thank you?

I know it’s not modest of me to consider myself pretty, if I deny it I’m a hypocrite, if I admit it I’m arrogant or cocky.. but people keep reminding you of it every second, even when you personally are not thinking about “it”, so there you go, you just can’t get any of this right. Seems like you have to proof your worth twice as hard in everything you do, and add to that the “woman” factor.

Yes, being a woman is hard as it is. Everyone seems obliged to tell you that you look great, oh yeah and sing well too. What happened to sincere, honest recognition of a person’s ability to sing and perform? and all those other qualities that go way further than skin deep?The world is not a beauty contest and I would have definitely not come this far had I NOT been good at what I do.

I speak for all those women out there you have to struggle with superficial, at times inappropriate, comments that diminish who we truly are, by people who think they are paying us a tribute.

What else comes with it?

…envy, distrust, plain hatred, jealousy, competitiveness, back-stabbing and fake smiling…

But don’t worry, you look fabulous anyway!

Who cares for all that other stuff.

(sarcasm)

be inspired, it’s not foolish

dear all,

I’ve been thinking a lot about positives and negatives in one’s life. I have to say it is truly hard to make the choice to be happy.

I know it’s quite absurd but have you ever had the feeling that when you decide to be happy a lot of people stand in your way?  whether it is a healthy habit, like being on diet, or when you take up something new, running, playing a musical instrument,etc. It’s as though the outsider’s guilty conscience would do anything to make you stop since it lacks of discipline itself.

2 years ago I had made a commitment to making my life healthier, feeling good about myself. As I lost 11 kg gradually and started my new life I had a lot of negativity around me. Don’t get me wrong I’ve also inspired many friends to take up running and healthy habits, this was what I loved most about the process. Nevertheless I was forced to listen to anyone’s opinion of what they thought of my new lifestyle. Mind you I hadn’t asked for their opinion.

Needless to say I felt like I was making a mistake, maybe these people were right, maybe I was going overboard with it all, maybe I did look better with more curves… BS (I hope you guys know what that stands for!)

I got it all wrong. I put people’s opinions before my own, I tried to make everyone happy by accepting their party invitations loaded with junk food and beer and ended up feeling insecure about my body again and feeling miserable about other aspects of my life, all this after 2 years of sacrifices that actually left me feeling good!

Believe me this doesn’t just apply to food or weight loss or vanity. When you decide to have positive models and do something useful with your time, being happy with your job, you’ll get some cynic telling you you’re too naive, that instead of managing your anger, fixing your flaws, working on yourself,  you should accept the world as it is, reminding you that there are more problems in the world that you won’t ever be able to fix, and that you’re stupid for caring about yourself because it really doesn’t matter. It makes no difference to anyone how you try to live your life. You’re basically a fool for being an idealist. For pursuing your goals, little or big.

What’s so wrong with being happy? I’ve been reading really great books by the motivational coach Robin Sharma, and I’ve found many truths that have confirmed my vision of what the world should feel like. I’ve decided not to be mediocre to my own eyes, invest in my talents and be brave enough to show my happiness to any cynic. Cause there’s nothing wrong with being in control, shutting out the negativity, making yourself proud of who you are and how you spend your time.

Life is a miracle, there’s too much to learn. I appreciate daily runs, reading, friends, my job, and regardless of any ups or downs, I know for sure that I have the power to overcome it all, because I have disciplined myself to recognise what happiness is to me and I’m not ashamed of being “naive” and inspired by music, art, books, sport, and those people around me who make this world a better place for me. I’m done with negativity and negative people. For good.

WM

Being a “rock”

White_Rock_-_BW

Hi everybody,

Today I want to talk to you about what it is like being a “rock”. Not in the literal sense of the word.

I am often told I am like a rock because of my strong character and discipline, the way I can hold my ground  when everything is crumbling down, the way I can be strong when everyone else is weak, and so on…I guess that it is true in some way, I just wish I didn’t have to be the rock all the time.

Trust me, I’ve tried.

Sometimes I truly think that what other people think of us is what really makes us. I never chose to be the rock. This was in some way decided for me and it is expected of me no matter what. When I had my melt downs I realized that other people couldn’t handle me in any way, they didn’t even know what to say to make me feel better while I was perfectly aware of what I was going through and was amazed at the inability of the people around me to lift my spirit! I was extremely disappointed that I could never have a shoulder to cry on because crying was not expected of me. Despair wasn’t a word that could be included in my vocabulary. It saddens me and makes me proud at the same time. I can’t have my “mad times” or simply feel worthless… not when I’m in a company of friends or family, automatically this transfers a bad mood amongst my loved ones which then becomes a huge issue they absolutely can’t deal with. So I’m forced to hide my true feelings and keep being the motivator.

It’s obvious I’m not happy all the time, but I tend to make myself happy, work on my happiness so that the vision people have of me reflects the reality. I just want to make sure that I’m true to myself most of the time and keep being strong or let things out when I need to in a more private way, away from it all. It really works for me and my moody behavior.

Are you anyone’s rock? Do you like being a rock?

I’m just beginning to accept it…

Fitness – a life changing experience

Today I’d love to inspire you. Inspire you to be a better you! Why you ask? Simple, I’ve lived 26 years of my life feeling and knowing I could have done more, that something was missing and that I didn’t feel I belonged in the “mediocre” category.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never been overweight, just a little chubby, and what better excuse to not worry about certain health issues when there are millions of people that are overweight and worse off than you, right? WRONG! It’s not about “the others” it’s all about how YOU feel!

I don’t know what came over me, but about a year ago one of my friends proposed I follow a diet he’d invented, which involved very slight changes in my eating habits, 10 days of vegetables, very few carbs and a lot of water… It was hell at first, I must admit I didn’t even know of the existence of certain veggies, let alone enjoy eating them… I just wanted to get it over with and start eating whatever I was eating before. This involved pasta, pizza, chinese take away and chips.

I used to work long hours teaching English at Barilla, Parma. At lunch time there was the famous canteen where “good food” was never missing and ready to be had  (today I don’t consider pasta “good food” even though considering what people from other countries eat, the italian eating habits are far better and healthier options). Moreover I never had breakfast because I was too lazy to get up earlier to make some. I spent 8 hours straight at work and in the evenings was so starved that I just had to indulge in something quick and easy and fattening, whether it was fast food, take away, or another plate of pasta!!! That rounds it up to 2 meals a day which were NOT healthy options, no matter where you live or who cooks for you.

As I was saying I started the 10 day challenge, and realised that even though I hated it at first, my body was reacting in a positive way. To sum things up I had more energy by the end of the day, I was never starved and I began to be more active. I joined the gym and a friend of mine on Facebook noticed the change and began to take interest in my life changes. She was planning on becoming a body builder and had already lost something like 35kg. Now, I know most of you will say “God! I hate all those muscles! They’re not lady-like” or “people that spend more time at the gym don’t have time to read books and be smart or are too concentrated on appearance”… I used to be one of those people myself. But what I learned from this friend of mine was that it’s basically impossible to get crazy muscles at the gym doing weights, and that lifting was not something that made you manly if you didn’t want that type of a body (which is really your choice) … I’m sure we’ll have a chance to talk about that another time.  What mattered to me was that I could now go to the gym with no fear of “becoming a man” but that I could burn far more calories lifting weights and doing squats than just doing cardio. She also gave me her diet which consisted in 5 or 6 meals a day – Eggs, white meat, no sugar, not much salt, tons of veg, water, no alcohol, nuts and more veg – every 3 hours.

I forced myself to go to the gym every other day. I started on the 3rd of January 2013 and I initially gained 4kg on top of my 71kg and later started losing weight by eating healthy and working out. Gradually I started running outdoors when the days got warmer. It wasn’t easy because you miss out on a lot of parties and people generally don’t accept the NEW YOU that quickly. This was my first diet, EVER, and I wanted to make it work for me. My skin became smoother, my legs stronger and faster, my self-esteem grew and strangely enough I didn’t care about weight-loss anymore! I came down to 60kg!!! I felt confident buying new clothes, wearing whatever I wanted with no awkward feelings. Being on stage singing and being photographed! I went from a size L to a size S.

I don’t want the wrong message to come across. It’s not about being skinny, it’s about being healthy! I’m not saying I will ever believe those who say they feel good about being overweight or lazy, or that appearance doesn’t matter. Let’s face it, it does matter!  Because you don’t feel at ease, and this is a part of your life you can learn how to control easily and feel better almost at once. Your body is a part of you!  You stop obsessing over it when you have mastered your eating habits and put in the hours at the gym or at the park or at home! There really is no excuse!

This experience helped me learn that people can change shape in just a few months, it taught me not to judge people based on their weight or their shape…I used to be stubborn and uninformed myself. I should write a whole different post about how my family was surprised by my new eating habits and how they criticised me brutally just because they didn’t understand many aspects of my new lifestyle (mind you I wasn’t even obsessing over food and exercise that much) … In fact my Armenian family, that puts food above many other things (bless them) found it hard to understand why a 71kg woman should even WANT to be healthier or fitter, or go jogging instead of socialising with friends over an “aperitivo”. All the men around me said they didn’t like their women muscly… I alway replied sarcastically saying I wasn’t their woman…and that I didn’t like my men to be bald, flabby, short or simply describing a visual defect they most certainly had. I didn’t want to be mean, I said this because I don’t think anyone should expect you to work on becoming their ideal woman or man, it’s a strictly personal/private decision! In other words, I may adore muscles… it’s my business whether I should work on being muscly, your job is to be kind to me no matter what the circumstance! Why is it considered wrong to call someone FAT yet it’s not considered wrong to say to a female body builder “I think your muscles make you look manly and I hate them!” ??? I wasn’t even close to a body builder type yet I had those type of comments coming at me.

Despite all the hardship I managed to overcome what other people thought of me… I put myself first. Soon it will be a year since I started. I can now run up to 15km and go about my day feeling good. I eat whatever I want once per week and during holidays. I now know how to control my eating habits and my body doesn’t control me. It’s really our decision what we make of our lives, what we want to make our focus. It’s a valuable life lesson: I simply decided I didn’t want to feel attacked on such an insignificant topic such as weight-loss or dieting. I decided I didn’t want to feel awkward with a skirt on or pull my belly in for photos. I figured that if I made this change it would take my mind off unimportant things such as calories, size of clothing or food, instead it would help me focus on other things that truly mattered.

I hope you enjoyed the post. Here’s a pic of my progress. The real change is within!

WM

Immagine