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Helena Önneby

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When Things Don’t Go As Planned

Christmas is just around the corner and you may, like so many, experience that this year didn’t really turn out quite as you had planned for. It is easy to get caught up in regret or worry in times like these. But what if there is a great gift in all of this that we can choose to open? A gift that we can enjoy for the rest of our lives.

I wrote a Swedish article last year that I named How to create the Christmas you long for. It’s about how we actually do what we do because we want to feel a certain way. And how we can create the life we want to live here and now, without all the perfect conditions in place, once we know what those feelings actually are.

My Christmas article this year is on that same theme; presence and inner power. Because if there is one thing 2020 has taught us, it is that much of life is beyond our control. And at the same time, what a huge impact our inner life, our ability to be present in our lives today, has on our well-being. That we do best in living here and now. That’s why I created a simple Christmas calendar this year on my Instagram account @purepersonalpower. A “be-well” calendar where I share simple tips daily for a more present and creative life, creating well-being in the smallest details. I want to share it here too in the hope that it will inspire you:

  1. Take a 3-minute dance break. Put on a song you love and let your body move as it pleases.
  2. Do one thing today in full presence
  3. Do a ‘rampage of appreciation’ – write at least one page of things you are grateful for right now
  4. Put a hand on your own heart and say: I am here for you. You’re doing okay.
  5. Get outside, feel the air against your skin, look up at the sky, you are a part of nature
  6. Meditate for at least 5 minutes today. Just sit and breathe and notice (without reacting)
  7. If your brain is bothering you with a recurring thought today, ask yourself the question: Is it true? Can I really know that it’s true? (www.thework.com)
  8. Read a few pages from a book that inspires you
  9. Ask yourself the questions: What do I long for? What feelings do I think I will feel when I’m “there”? What can I do today to feel that way? Do that thing.
  10. Lie down on the floor and feel what needs to be felt (in the body, not in the mind)
  11. Get in touch with someone you are thinking of and tell them that you are thinking of them
  12. Drink at least 1.5 liters of water today
  13. Ask a friend to hold space for you to share what is alive in your heart and mind. Do the same for them.
  14. Left nostril breathing: Put a finger against the outside of the right nostril. Breathe slowly in and out through your left nostril.
  15. Search for Sarah Blondin anywhere, do one of her amazing guided meditations
  16. Light a candle and give yourself a few minutes to just sit and look at it
  17. Take a cold shower / bathe cold (breathe deeply and slowly)
  18. Do a brain dump. Anything that’s moving in your mind right now, get it out of your mind and onto the page
  19. Close your eyes and breathe out, listen inwards, where you have had contact with your intuition before – is there something it wants to tell you?
  20. Put out your yogamat or something soft on the floor, set a timer for 10 minutes and let the body stretch and move as it longs to move
  21. Reflect on the following; What if you are already enough? What if you’re okay, just the way you are, right now?

If you want the last tips of the Christmas Calendar or read more about the practices, you can check out my Instagram in the next few days.

There is probably some things in your life that you want to change and that is perfectly okay. But practicing the ability to be present, to appreciate the small things and to put more focus on what you can actually influence, can create a wonderful life, regardless of external circumstances.

This is a guest post. Any opinions expressed are the writer’s own.

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