Meine Geschichte. Für dich.

My personal story. For you!

Are you interested in my personal story? Do you want to get to know the person behind better work for life? Nice to meet you, that’s me 🙂 .

Growing up

I grew up in a charming part of Hamburg, which is a beautiful City in the North of Germany. My schooldays were quite unspectacular and I was let loose on the global economy directly after my exams. A teacher inspired me:“Nele, you have the makings of a really successful businesswoman!“ Today, looking back, it was exactly this advice which motivated me to study economics jointly with export and foreign trade. The future looked so bright! Read more

Why the death of my friend helped me find unexpected happiness.

I admit it, the title sounds harsh. Heartless. Loveless. Cold. But what I mean is the opposite.

I loved her so much!

She was a wonderful friend who will forever have a place in my heart. For the rest of my life I will think of her when I eat cheesecake (NY Cheesecake, which only she could bake!) and whenever I hear “It never rains in Southern California” I will remember our wonderful road trip down California’s Route No 1 and sing along at the top of my voice. Every dull “plock” (of a ball meeting racket) will remind me of our fun on the tennis court. I miss her very much. So much.

After her (way too early) death, something happened to me, something that changed my whole life. Something big. I will never say that my life is BETTER without her in it. But … my life changed considerably. How did it change? And why? This is what this article is about. Read more

My very personal pursuit of happiness!

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony- Mahatma Gandhi

So it was for me, for years. My personal pursuit of UNhappiness worked out quite well. I was so loyal to it, just as we all are to house rules, to supermarket opening times or school timetables. I didn’t question, I simply accepted. Nothing to discuss. Nothing to change.
Until I tried something … I rewrote the manual. Since then I have had my own personal pursuit of HAPPINESS. Read more

My very personal pursuit of unhappiness…

The belief that one’s own view of reality is the only reality is the most dangerous of all delusions.- Paul Watzlawick

Everyone has them. Everyone knows them.
Some share them with others. Some wear them on their sleeve.
Others guard them closely; so closely that it might take months, even years, to get a glimpse of them. But without doubt, everyone has them.
They work well. Seriously well.
Everyone has their own pursuit of unhappiness. Here is mine:

Read more

Part 2: An exercise to help you find your calling!

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.- Steve Jobs

Are you in the right place?

This is part 2 of a task aimed to help you to find your place in life, to find your calling, your vocation. Read more

Part 1: An exercise to help you find your calling!

Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life; everyone must carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfillment.- Vikrot E. Frankl

I’m sure you know them too, those people who simply seem to be in the right place? Work doesn’t appear to feel like work to them, they are almost invariably content, full of energy, meaning and happiness. They have that twinkle in their eye, which is reserved for those who have found their place.

But what is it that is different about them?

In order to answer this question, I spent a lot of time observing, reading, studying and researching. Read more

8 steps that help you to figure out whether you should let go.

Some of us think holding on makes us strong. But sometimes it is letting go.- Hermann Hesse

My thoughts about “letting go” start with a little time travel. With a trip to my childhood.

I remember the time quite well, the colourful time of balloons. They decorated lovely birthday parties. Often filled my kid’s mind with joy during boring visits to trade fairs or electronics retailers.

And best of all, they could even … fly (not to mention the funny voices possible after breathing in their “air”)!

These balloons were tied gently to my wrist when I was a little girl, so I could not – childishly clumsy – let go by mistake and burst onto tragic tears. But the few times that this did happen, held something magical. The balloon, so plump and lightweight, full of air and the unknown; I watched as it climbed up to heaven. I saw the balloon win the fight. Yes, win. And eventually disappear to where it had been drawn to: the vast sky.

Read more

Letter to thyself. Letter to myself.

Dance like no one is watching. Sing like no one is listening. Love like you’ve never been hurt. And live like it’s heaven on Earth.- Mark Twain

Be true. Be you.
Love. Be loved.

Jump. Dance.
Play like a child.
Nobody is watching.
Nobody is judging.

Take breaks. Take breaths.
Stop for a minute.
Hold on.
And smile.

Dare to listen.
Listen a lot.
What can you hear?
Who is whispering to your ear?

Read more

Bus of Life

In the end, it’s not the years in your life that count. It’s the life in your years.- Abraham Lincoln

Imagine your life is a bus.
A bus that follows a certain route.
Driving through the world, from stop to stop.
Crossing streets, cities, canyons and villages.
Passing people, moments, spectacles and oceans.
Across mountains, bridges and colorful meadows.

Tell me, who is driving your bus?
Who is sitting in the driver’s seat?
Who chooses where to stop next?
Who decides the times, passengers, and route?

Read more

It’s Monday! Tips for a merry start to your week.

Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.- Zig Ziglar

Monday blues

A typical Monday morning. Your alarm rings (far too early), you hit snooze (another 10 minutes), a little later another time (3 more minutes) and finally you get out of your warm and cozy bed, tired, in a grim mood.

You get out of the wrong side of the bed, on your way to the bathroom, you stumble across the sleeping dog (don’t they hear alarmclocks?), jump into a cold shower because they’ve cut the warm water (oh yeah, there was something in the mail box). And – of course – this happens on a MONDAY morning.

But why do Mondays put us in a bad mood?

What can be done against it? Read more