Tag: Free time

3 Tips for Dealing With Change

We, humans, are simple creatures.

Despite the fact that your neighbour claims he hates routine and is slowly dying in front of his office desk, he’s more than happy to just get home, turn on TV, grab some chips and ponder about the future while doing nothing for a few hours.

And admit it, so do you.

lazy_man
Human brain is not programmed to make us take risks, change our lifestyles and challenge us constantly. Our brain is designed to STOP us from doing all these things that biologically speaking are or might be a threat to our survival.

Challenging yourself and agreeing to things you are not certain about is extremely scary. But also, a hell of a fun.

…and now imagine the scenario that your neighbour suddenly starts jogging (after being a couch potato for years), stops buying his favourite chips and snacks on raw carrots with hummus instead. His oxytocin levels rise, he feels happier and more powerful and then – BANG – he decides to quit his job and actually do something he’s always been passionate about.

It took him 10 minutes to get dressed for his first jog that got him hooked.

It took him a few weeks of meal prep to get used to the new routine.

And it’ll be months or even years of joyous moments filled with self-satisfaction and pleasure.

Starting something new is difficult; achieving change requires a sense of urgency and active involvement in change efforts. But it’s not impossible if you focus on positives, talk to others and break the big, scary change into small, manageable pieces.

1. Focus on positives

Instead of focusing on the hurdles that you will face, focus on the positives that you will enjoy. Leave the difficulties aside (they will step in no matter what), but rather learn to see the positive aspects of each situation.
E.g. it might be costly and difficult to move from the US to China, but I’m sure it’ll broaden my knowledge, will challenge me and I can’t wait to try the wonders of the local cuisine!

2. Talk to someone who’s done it

At first, you may freak out about your resistance to change. But you’re not unique here – it’s completely normal; we are afraid of the unknown. To eliminate the fear of the unknown and to familiarize yourself with what’s coming next, give it a try and talk to someone who’s been through the same experience – it’ll help you prepare mentally.
E.g. I am intimidated by what it will bring, and I would like to know how my life will change. I know my friend’s cousin went through the same experience – why don’t I talk to him!

3. Break it down to actionable steps

Starting big is way scarier than starting small. Preparing yourself fully for the change is close to impossible, but making yourself aware of the change and starting to prepare is.
E.g. I have to move to China in two months. Why don’t I start a Chinese crash course now, to prepare myself for the upcoming change? I might as well find a few pen pals now to get myself introduced to the culture.

Accept that there will be a new chapter in your life that is meant for you, have an open mind and accept everything as it comes your way.

Because change, after all, is scary.

It’s terrifying.

But it can also be the best thing you’ll ever do.

Arbejdsglæde: The Joy Of Working in Denmark

Arbejdsglæde is an interesting Danish word, meaning “the joy of working” or otherwise “happiness at work”. Unlike in many languages, it an often used word referring to the level of happiness a person feels regarding the job. That’s why you should not be surprised if your boss in Denmark asks whether you are happy – just like that out of nowhere – hoping to get an enthusiastic “yes”.

The word “arbejde” refers to “work” and “glæde” to “happiness”. So the word refers to happiness at work and your inner feelings about the job, not thoughts about it. Actually, “arbejdsglæde” is not that often used in other languages unlike it is in Denmark. The word exists basically mainly in Scandinavian countries. In Denmark colleagues may actually wish you job satisfaction if you are going to settle on your task for a while using a similar word combination – e.g. “god arbejdslyst” = “good luck”, whereas “lyst” refers to “pleasure”, so the direct translation would be “have a good working pleasure”.

It might not be a coincidence that “arbejdsglæde” exists only in Scandinavian languages: Scandinavians have trandition on focusing on work-related happiness. That is also the reason why they do not push their children to jump straightly into universities as soon as they are done with the school since it is believed that children have to find what they are passionate about – and it is believed that passion and drive always leads for the best result. That it leads to the better, fuller future where they know what they want to do and have a drive for it. In this case, it leads to happiness at work.

Job Satisfaction = Finding Your Passion

Studies show that there is a direct link between happiness and work; besides, companies with happy employees perform up to twice as much compared to the ones where workers are not satisfied. Happiness at work is not equal to your salary, bonuses, benefits or tasks. Job satisfaction is: job satisfaction deals about you “feeling good” at work due to external causes, such as free fruits at work, tasty coffee or nice office. But happiness at work comes from your own feelings and not comfort you have around you. I remember once having stumbled upon an American peer who described me his part-time job very negatively so that I just asked – “do you even like your job?”. “Of course not, he answered, that’s why I get paid”. However,  job satisfaction is actually a derivative coming from two things – the results - i.e. what makes you proud and relationships - whether you feel good about the people you work with.

job needed

Job satisfaction is not a complicated thing: it’s all about going to work and feeling good about it. It’s about contribution and positive difference that you create in your own and others’ lives. In Denmark, employers employ people who are passionate about the company and some certain tasks. Here, employers want to find perfect employees who would be ambassadors of a company instead of workers. Well, after all, we spend around 37 hours a week working – don’t we intend to change these hours into something pleasant rather than unpleasant? Job satisfaction is actually one of the three main sources of happines and the best cure for stress. Therefore, if your boss in Denmark asks whether you are happy – just like that, out of nowhere – you should think about changing the workplace if you cannot tell him an enthusiastic “yes” to the question he asked.

 

If you are interested in the topic, you might be interested in reading a book on Job Satisfaction: “Happy hour 9 to 5“.

We Love Denmark, Because…

I bet all of you know or at least have heard about the fairytales The Ugly Duckling, The Little Mermaid and The Snow Queen. Some of you might even know that they were written by Hans Christian Andersen, a great Danish writer. Denmark is also known for Karen Blixen, Danish author, also known by her pen name as Isak Dinesen. And last, but not least – we cannot forget the greatest smørrebrød…  

Without a doubt, Denmark is a great country to live in. It has a number of opportunities that one can use. Even though it is relatively cold and grey, Denmark is still said to be the happiest country in the whole world. Wonder why? We decided to find it out.

“There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”
― William ShakespeareHamlet

The main reason why you love Denmark? (2 votes)

Things To Do When the Weather Gets Awful

Living in Denmark could be perfectly compared to a ride on roller coasters - one minute you are completely happy and energized because of an amazing weather, and another minute you are under the weather and totally soaked. And cold. Even though one could argue that such bad days, in terms of weather, do not give any energy boost and therefore one might feel slightly depressed, I would argue otherwise – bad weather gives you a number of possibilities of activities that you wouldn’t do otherwise.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/binaryape/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/binaryape/

Clean your mini-library corner

It could sound a little boring to go through all the books you have in order to make sure your shelves look nice, yet one thing I can guarantee – you will get inspired! Looking at the books you have purchased and read will make you remember what you have read and what you should. Skimming through the favorite books makes you memorize your favorite ideas and thoughts written down over there, and well, isn’t great that you have time for that?

Studying

If the weather is good, you will most likely rather feel like going for a long walk by the seaside instead of sitting home and updating an Excel spreadsheet, full of numbers. If it’s raining and relatively cold, you can be sure you will be “teased” to go outside and enjoy the weather, therefore you will have a better focus on your books and notes.

Long skype talks

If you are not Danish, I bet you have a number of friends and relatives who are missing you. Why don’t you call them and have a long, sincere and hearty talk with them? It could be a good idea to follow up on your old friends, do you know what they are doing and what was the last time you talked to them? Make sure you keep the contact and share your experiences with them!

Handcrafts

You might have forgotten that you are a talented artist who likes to paint with water colours. Or that you enjoy writing poems. Or that you like sewing, but haven’t had time nor mood to do so for a long time. Why don’t you do it now? It’s cold and rainy outside, and you are looking for an activity that would make you feel happy and energized. If you have never done any handcrafts in your life, it could be a good idea to try!

Baking

Nothing feels better than drinking warm cacao and eating a home-made apple pie, especially if one can observe a miserable weather when sitting inside. You don’t have to be a chef to bake a simple shortcake or an apple pie to spoil yourself, your friends and/or your beloved one. Half an hour and your tummies will get a minute of joy!..

Watching TV/Youtubue

What was the last time you’ve seen an episode from you favorite TV show? And what was the last time you laughed so bad till your tummy hurt? Watch a funny comedy or a stand up comedy (check out Gabriel Iglesias) and have a good time regardless of the miserable weather outside!

Restaurant Athena

Have you ever eaten at a Greek restaurant in Aarhus? No? It could be a good idea to do so, especially since the weekend is coming. If you would like to spoil yourself or someone special, you could try traditional Greek foods and environment. I promise that both of you will remember that very special evening eating snakopita, tzatziki and enjoying a shot of ouzo. 

Athena

Restaurant Athena was opened in 1995 by a Greek man Konstantin Lazaridis. It is in the heart of Aarhus: only a couple of meters away from the Domkirke, the main church in Aarhus. It has got a wide range of traditional Greek starters, main dishes and desserts. Not to forget Greek wine and traditional alcoholic drink ouzo…

 restaurant Athena

One can find a tempting offer in a restaurant which is worth taking: 199 kr for a starter and a main dish, or a main dish and a dessert. Believe me, the food is really tasty and the portions are so large so that you might want to go for a romantic walk afterwards.

 athena meal

athena vegetarian plate

Besides, Athena has probably got the tastiest potatoes in the town. Not sure if that’s a secret Greek recipe or simply something that Mister Konstantin has came up with, but oh those potatoes! They are soft yet crispy and extremely tasty.

However, if you are on a diet or simply adore healthy food, you could be disappointed on how fat Greeks eat. Tasty (yet a bit fat) dishes, refreshing salad, dimensional tastes of desserts and classy drinks – that’s what the restaurant is all about.

Worst Habits Before Going To Sleep

Morning. Your alarm screams that you must wake up, but you keep pressing “snooze” for a number times in a row until you actually have to leave… Is that a familiar feeling? According to doctors, there are three bad habbits that keep us awake for too long and do not let us have a quality sleeping time.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/angavallen/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/angavallen/

Watching TV/sports

According to doctors, it is not recommended to watch TV before going to sleep as it keeps our brains awake even though we might feel sleepy. The same story with the sport: if you engage in an activity that requires a lot of physical strength and patience, it stimulates higher blood circulation and keeps your body awake for too long. The only good physical activity before going to sleep, according to doctors, is sex…

Hot air

If a temperature in your bedroom is higher than 21, most likely you will face some troubles to fall asleep. It is said that a room, which is too hot for an appropriate and relaxing sleep (i.e. over 21 degrees of Celcius) will not let you sleep tightly and therefore your body will not feel relaxed. Adjust the room temperature so that it would be a little below 20.

Time checking

If you cannot fall asleep, you should not check the time on your mobile phone or a wristwatch. Realizing that you have less and less hours of sleeping will make you feel stressed and you will have even harder time to fall asleep.