Week in review: The one with THE mental trick

It’s all about the mind[set]. And. The mind is a powerful thing. That’s what they say. What I say: They*are right. If I wanted to sum up my accomplishments from the past week in one two words: mind tricks. Or rather: One mind trick. THE mind trick if I dare say so. Read on to find out how I manipulated myself  the positive way. As usual through a new Week in Review following the lead of  our lovely host Meg.

**whoever they are

Week in review

We’re looking back at a week where I …

Posted three times. One of these times sharing the recipe for these Triple Coconut Chocolate Caramel Bars that involves making your own non-dairy condensed milk. I wouldn’t blame anybody preparing just that part …

Taught German twice. The holidays started for students here on Thursday hence missing that day’s lesson. It was also my last time teaching on Mondays. We’re visiting different schools on Monday vs. Wednesday/Thursday and we’re resigning from the former after the holidays. Part of me is happy as things in that school just didn’t work well. But part of me is also sad for the children not getting the support anymore.

Worked four days in my regular job.Same old, same old aside from the fact I …

Took Friday off to …

Semi-spontaneously hop on the train and visit my sister – and that special someone 😉 – in Hamburg. When it’s been a while since previous travels I can find it harder to get out again – despite knowing I’ll enjoy it in the end. We had a lovely day: Walking, talking and – news alert! – eating sweet potato fries from a vegan food truck that just so happened to be on our route ;). If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you’ll know I’m not exactly declaring my fondness of sweet potatoes on the daily  [read: along the lines of the opposite]. These fries however? Wow, wow, wow. The sweetness made these such a great alternative to regular fries. And the vegan curry mayonnaise wasn’t half bad, either, which is even more suprising because mayo is one of those foods I’ve never liked. Never.

It was awesome visiting her that day, too, as my grandparents stopped by shortly so I got warm grandpa and grandma hugs, too. And I hugged them tightly. Call me dramatic but I think all hugs we give loved ones should be extra long since we never know when or if we’ll meet again. #notmorbid

No-bake fudge brownies_close-up

Also semi-spontaneously prepared a batch of these No-bake Fudge Brownies for my sister upon her request. This is when the mind tricking started. Thursday was rather stressful and the last thing I wanted to do was prepare anything that required several bowls and cleaning the Vitamix. So I told my sister I was sorry but it wasn’t going to happen. Yet I dislike disappointing and really like gifting others. This – on top of everything else on my Friday night to-do list – stressed me out. I’m not saying this to complain but describe a mental fight I feel I’m not alone in: needing relaxation, wanting to do others a favour. What’s a girl to do? Trick herself. I told myself I’d just go along the brownie making process step by step. If at any point I didn’t feel it anymore I could stop. You know it: once you pop, you can’t stop finish the task at hand because finishing feels so darn good. It’s the mental trick that works a charm in many situations: studying, exercising, baking, …

And the mental manipulation into productivity didn’t stop there. Rather, once I noticed what I’d done I tricked myself constantly. That sounds weird but fine, fine. I cleaned my kitchen sink plus bathroom (sink, toilet) – at 9 PM on Saturday night. Because that’s when my Saturday-wasn’t-productive-enough panic set in. As usual, I wasn’t feeling it but told myself that I had to do just the kitchen sink. Almost a favourite task because it’s nice to see it all sparkly again [even if that effect lasts a mere minute only]. Obviously, I was hit by motivation and finished the bathroom, too.

Took a million and one pictures of the flowers on our yard but since my laptop isn’t cooperative tonight a little throwback will have to make do.

Flower

Finally replied to a mail I’d been meaning to for weeks months. Again using said trick by a) telling myself I had to only write as much as I felt like and b) that it’s not normal to proof-read your mails more than once. Here’s to hoping I didn’t make too many mistakes.

Scrubbed that one nasty spot behind my sink that’s been overdue for some cleaning. That was some stress-cleaning that I’m glad to hear others do, too.

Gave myself a little pep talk after a very uncomfortable conversation. Which – now that I’m thinking about it – reminds me of this fabulous little site. Coincidentially, it brought up this one for me right now:

You are smart. You are a force. You can ask for what you want, jump-start your car battery, eat at the bar by yourself, and open a Roth IRA like an alpha-fem supreme queen. You’re not a Dime—you’re one of those rare steel pennies the U.S. Mint circulated during WWII to preserve copper that are now worth $100k+. Sometimes your twenties feel like playing a video game on the ‘Difficult’ level, but you are unstoppable. You are insatiable. You are a warrior. Take your sledgehammer and smash that glass ceiling to smithereens. Keep doing EXACTLY what you’re doing, babygirl. Chin up, shoulders back.

Caught up with a good friend.Unfortunately just via phone but nonetheless. Why is it so hard to stay in touch with everybody we want to?

Called my grandma on Thursday night when I was feeling it the least – Thursday was oneof those no days . I do believe in destiny and this conversation was well worth it brightening both her and my mood. Funny how that works.

Proof-read one of my sister’s papers for university. Somebody give me more of those tasks. Is it very weird that I get honestly excited about editing? It feels neirdy to say but I truly like it. We all have our quirks, no?

 

Happiness-inducing today:  Productivity! And a very nice evening walk.

 

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Let me know any other mental tricks or productivity hacks you’ve found to work for you!
 

Week in review: Living that adult life

Some weeks I – maybe you, too? – just feel like no. No to that whole adulting, responsibilities, paying bills. Can I please take a trip back to childhood where the biggest problems were broken toys or not getting our will?  Then again, there are many silver linings to that grown-up life, too, so I won’t go on whining. Rather, let’s get listing with Meg for another Week in Review.

Week in review

Worked the usual five days. Stlll not my dream job but the past week provided me with diversified tasks so that’s good. Always looking for the silver linings.

Published three posts again and read many great ones by others – in case you haven’t seen yesterday’s post: I really like the food for thought I happened upon in the past week.

Bought my mum chocolate. Not for any specific reason  – we’ve never celebrated Mother’s Day and I actually wouldn’t have known it was yesterday had it not been for Instagram – but just because. It’s the kind of chocolate I don’t really fancy but the favourite of her and my dad so when I saw it on offer I bought four bars. These are triple the regular size so technically should last for a while. Technically = not with my dad around.

Milka chocolate bars

Met/dealt with my non-friends, the spiders, again. Read: I cleaned my apartment including the ceilings that  said non-friends have chosen to be their territory. I’d like to disagree.

Learned new skills at work. It’s nice to grow into a more responsible position rather than just watch others do the important tasks.

Fuelled my brain by reading. I got a new issue of my favourite magazine and it’s just as good as any of theirs.

Experimented with another recipe that I’m not sure will come to fruition yet. While not difficult it took some more time – preparing my own non-dairy and refined sugar-free condensed milk – which was intimidating but fun. The verdict on its taste and success versus fail is still out as it needs to chill in the fridge overnight before cutting into it. Let’s hope the combination of multiple ingredients that taste fabulous on their own will result in a delicious outcome.

Recipe testing

Finally took a trip to the glass containers to discard my empties. Am I the only one who keeps procrastinating on this? I’m not even sure why because it literally takes less than two minutes once I’m there but I still drag it out every time.

Did some laundry. Another one of those adult tasks I dislike with a passion. Fresh clothes and sheets? Yes. But hanging the laundry up, taking it down and folding? I’d rather clean the bathroom and that’s to say something.
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Went to the cinema semi-spontaneously on Saturday night . The movie was a-okay but the fact I didn’t stress over fitting it into my schedule short notice was good. It probably sounds odd as I enjoy these kind of activities but I can become pretty unflexible in my routine if I haven’t gone out in some time.

Flowers

Relaxed on Saturday. It stressed me out knowing I hadn’t accomplished anything by the end of the day but I also knew I  somehow needed this kind of day.

Went on several walks again, one with my mum that allowed for a really good [= deep] conversation.

Treated myself to an order of Yogi Chocolate Chili Tea. Like I mentioned it’s not available where I live so ordering online is my only chance to get it. I find spending a lot of money at once hard. Buying twelve boxes of tea over the course of several momths? Fine. The same sum at once? Whew.

Yogi Tea

Prepared another batch of these No-bake fudge brownies – and managed to almost kill my Vitamix in the process. Ooops.

Worked on drafts for several blog posts. The only problem is that none of them is finished yet because apparently my mind is either on strike or flooded with ideas for four different posts at once. A little slower, please.

Tried to keep calm when one of the German classes I teach didn’t go well at all. It’s a constant up and down – some days the kids actually want to learn and others they’re driving me crazy. I’m trying not to get too mad at myself for feeling somewhat clueless in those moments.

That’s it from me for now. Make this Monday a good one!

 

Happiness-inducing today:  A very sweet e-mail by a blogger friend.

 

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Week in review: Doing it for the family

Yes, I admit there was a slight temptation in naming this post “We are family”. But I wanted to spare all of us the resulting ear worm and also – the true reason, let’s face it – that’s entirely too cheesy and overused for my sensitive 😉 word fiend liking.

This week – like its predecessors – flew by in the blink of an eye. So much too do, so little time. And somehow it still feels like not a lot got done. Oh well. This [perception] will probably never change. Looking back at the past week it was a lot about helping/bonding with family. In food- and non-food-related ways but here’s what it looked like via Meg’s Week in Review.

Week in review

Probably my favourite work achievement of the week was a teaching success. One of the boys not only did what I told him to but got really excited and not even once fiddled around. Apparently, learning the Umlaute – explanation: we have not only a, o and u but ä, ö and ü in German – is a lot of fun. I was so delighted that I sneakily rewarded him with a little chocolate. I’m not entirely for food rewards but he really made me happy with his progress and change of attitude compared to previous weeks of playing the clown.

Worked in my regular job. Seeing as it’s a family business I guess this would count into the title.

Three blogs posts went up once again. And sorry not sorry but I have to mention this Nut and Seed Brittle once again for those who haven’t seen it yet – or those yet to be convinced to try it. Sue me. I need another batch soon. Honey-stly though: Who runs out of the bee’s nectar ever?

Nut cluster_5_ä

I researched, drafted and pulled my hair out for the blog – the latter mostly because my laptop keeps fussing around. Can you tell where my savings from work will go? I’m once again sorry I haven’t been doing a great job on the comment reply front but a constantly crashing laptop just is a serious curveball in getting anything done. Like editing pictures so I hope you’ll forgive me for the ones in this post.

Upon her request I prepared a big batch of these Snickers Truffles for my sister. In exchange for more baby photos, that is. It’s insane how fast that once tiny baby boy is growing.  Are there any aunts who can relate to wanting to keep their nieces/nephews small for a little longer? Not to sound too wistful early on but seeing a baby grow reminds me of how fleeting time is and how we age ourselves – almost impalpable in the moment but so apparent when looking back – every day. Look at me digressing …

Dance

[Just like I degressed above this picture has nothing to do with my writing but I thought it was funny so there we go.]

Cleaned my parents’ fridge. Not the worst task as it never looks awful to begin with and luckily was relatively low on the meat content. At least I’m making sure they’ll miss me when I move out again, I guess.

Cleaned my apartment – minus the fridge, though*.Once again discovering new nooks and crannies to wipe and pretty up. I don’t know about you but I find it impossible to actually clean the apartment spotlessly every week. How long would that take??

* Because one fridge is enough for a week and I need to keep some tasks for the next week, right? Completely talking myself into believing this …

February_until 21st 017

Upon another request – this time by my mum – I swept the stairs down to my parents’ basement. Just two words: dust balls and – spiders. No pictures of said spiders – doing all of us a favour, right?! – but those lovely flowers instead. They’re a gift from my mum that could be either a) for taking care of those nasty spiders and sticky fridge enterior, b) for being the best daughter in the world 😉 or c) none of those but simply because. I like the latter as those favours and gifts you don’t expect are the most appreciated.

Walked, walked, walked every day. More anxiety leads to more walking. I very much welcome the days getting longer again therefore allowing to at least take a short walk outside after work. One of those after-work walks happened with my mum – none with my dad this week.

 

Happiness-inducing today: Starting my day with a walk – umbrella necessary but no geese.

 

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Tell me three [or more] achievements from your past week!