Are You Happy In This Modern World?

All in all, I'm happier than I have ever been since I left Lisbon in September 2015. I'm happier because even though I don't have the mind, the body, the energy, and the safety of a standard plan I have my dreams and I shamelessly know what I stand for. I know myself a bit more and I'm no longer afraid of being different. I'm no longer afraid of doing and wanting to trek a different road.

The Bug Of Emptiness Always Has A Message For You

Afterwards, the bug and I remained in silence for a long time and I felt warm tears rolling down my face. There was a willing to fight them back and to deny the bug's words, because those words were the truth I didn't want to accept. I thought that accepting them meant having to hate myself for not being rational enough. The thing is that love is not rational, it just is... and the bug of emptiness comes in to tell us every now and then that we are missing in Love so that we can ease up our heart and let it be true to itself.

Mercury Retrograde in Pisces: All You Need To Know (March 5 to 28)

Mercury is currently in the sign of Pisces, the energy of dreams, visions and creativity. As the Mercury retrograde expresses itself, it reflects the emotional, intuitive energy of Pisces; listen to it! Listen to your intuition at this time; listen to your inner voice and the messages coming from your spirit. You may receive visions or omens from the divine sending you warning signals; pay attention to these.

Girl, Stop Crying Over Baby Boys

So I would like to leave you with this question: is he or she worth your blank future? You know, time is passing by and we compromise our future when we cling onto people who will never come back and be our person. Yes, it takes time to heal, I'm all for that, but it also takes a shift in perspective. Think about it. Are you waiting on potential and cuteness, or are you creating sustainability in your life? Baby boys and baby girls can't really play the game you have been wishing for.

The Sacred Art of Writing

Writing for me is to step into a sacred space. It's the entrance to my inner-being without dismissing my connection to every other human being. It's a portal to a world where all emotions co-exist freely and where there are no harsh rules shaping their expression. Hence, writing is my way to connect with life, because when I write I dive deep into humanity's heart. When I write, I do not only exist. I am one with myself and with the world. I am.

A Psychologist’s Unpopular Opinion About Mental Health & Wellbeing

It's time to wake up and stop tolerating the idea that "it's life" and that there is nothing we can do about it. It's time to stop the disempowerment of people who probably grew up believing that there was something really wrong with their brains and way of responding to life. I have been one of those too. The ugly truth is that we, as human beings, have been evolving in a climate of uncertainty and mechanists. Many of us were told that it is wrong to feel sad or angry. Many of us were told that it is wrong to be you, because being you means being an overload of many different things at the same time and the system doesn't like that. The system likes us to be who they want us to be, obeying sheep.

Why I Don’t Follow Any Religion But Try To Learn From All Of Them Instead

My research on Mindfulness and profound attraction for uncomfortable questions led me to learn about Buddhism. I studied the work of some ancient and contemporanean monks and I read about different approaches within Buddhism. I grew fond of Buddhism and its ideas about the mind, the human suffering, and the pathway to enlightenment. Yet I never felt like saying "I'm Buddhist". One day, I had plenty of time and I visited the Gatwick's Airport chapel. The room was empty and that was a relief. I sat down and I closed my eyes. After a while, a man, a priest I suppose, materialised himself in the room and he asked what Religion did I follow. I answered I was into Buddhism to what he stated "So you're a Buddhist". I couldn't tell him yes. I was interested in Buddhism, I still am, but I can't claim I'm a Buddhist, so all I could reply was "Well, sort of... not exactly".

Celebrating Diversity Among Women & The Badass Mystic Nurturer Archetype

I'm learning to love myself more each day so I can also love you more. I still don't like corridor small-talk and I never will, I think. However, I don't judge or hate the portion of women who like it, because I don't like to be judged for being different either. I don't like to feel that the way I am is wrong and I don't want to make someone else feel that way just because their way of being is different from mine. Today I choose to celebrate female diversity and I choose to respect each one of us by respecting myself first - I'm a badass mystic nurturer and there is nothing wrong with that!

Heart Harmonics, Synthetic Love & Eurovision 2019

I know what you are thinking. I already have the answers within me. I'm fighting them really hard due to my own pride and fear. I'm battling with my own brain and heart. I'm trying to erase flashbacks and I'm telling myself to hold on strongly to the "right path", the path of loving those who love you and not looking for those who don't. This reminds me somehow of Conan Osiris' Eurovision 2019 song. I sent the arrow. I broke the phone. And yet there is longing beyond logic. It didn't die, it keeps mysteriously alive. Perhaps it's not the longing for someone who is gone but rather the longing for something I knew to be close to my beloved.

Longing For Your Beloved

I honestly don't know how I feel about love at the moment. When I try to assess the situation all I can hear is crickets. Did I move on? In which stage am I? I actually don't think that love has been on the cards for me. It may not look like it since I usually spend a lot of time reflecting on this matter, but I don't see romantic love happening that soon in my life and maybe that's why I find it so weird to be listening to crickets. There was always someone to have feelings for and I don't feel like I long for someone specific right now. Sure, some faces do come to my mind, but even when they come I also feel they are half of what I need and half of what I deserve.

Time To Get Hands Dirty

The hard fact is that I'm only one person and a business has a lot of different aspects that need to be taken care of. If I'm busy manufacturing, I can't be at the same time looking after marketing or taking care of admin details. If I'm working my way through products, I can't be working on my services. Embracing this process with mindfulness has made me more patient with myself and my progress.

Leading A Simpler Life In The Name of Happiness

I'm enjoying the simplicity of being and reconnecting with what moves me as a person. I'm happier outside the standard system and it's true too that I'm only taking the first steps. I will have to battle hard to make my way viable and sustainable, but I' sure I won't be wasting away the best of me like I did for so many years. I don't think our way in life is supposed to be one of suffering and illness. I believe our way in life must be one of happiness, grace, and compassion. That's why I'm changing my life, one step at a time. I want to live more aligned with who I am and what I love. I want to cherish the people I meet and the experiences I get to live on this journey to happiness and beyond.

My 2-Year Blog Anniversary

Sitting down in from of my laptop and writing is like coming home. Reading your experiences and learning about your point of views is even greater. I feel I have grown and I have matured in a way that wouldn't be possible if I hadn't started this blog. I hope you and I can keep growing together. I hope I can keep reading your stories and I hope you can keep reading mine. I hope we can keep this sacred space between us.

Finding Yourself Might Not Be That Hard

For me finding myself has been more about self-acceptance and self-worth than actually finding out what makes me temporarily happy or entertained or contented. I wanted to publish a book about happiness this March and while I was trying to edit it I realised I couldn't do it, I couldn't finish it before finding myself and making myself happy. But guess what, there is nothing out there that will tell me who I am and there is nothing out there that will keep me happy forever and ever. So why keep following carrots in a stick when we were born farmers?

Depression, Anxiety and Stress Are Not All On You

You are not mentally ill because you are depressed, anxious, or stressed. Moreover, the argument that such experiences are due to an "unbalanced serotonin" alchemy is nothing more than a lie that pharmaceutical industry and well-paid scientists keep telling. That's another reason why I became disenchanted about the work I do; more often than not I see money being spent incorrectly and data-driven stories being severely edited so they can lead to more and bigger research grants. The lie about antidepressants, for instances, is just an example of one of those lies that became true to the extent that today many people attach themselves to the story of being mentally ill and to the need of swallowing higher and higher doses of antidepressants. That's how they have been conditioned to see and think about their subjective experiences, while a few people get richer and secure their jobs on and on.

Couscous With Caramelised Onion & Vegetables

As I promised on my instagram this week and as I mentioned on one of my previous posts, I'm sharing here today a different version of a vegetarian meal from my cooking e-book "Healthy Recipes for Wellbeing". You can have it for free if you download my Free Wellbeing Kit, which contains a few more goodies to support you on your wellbeing journey.

The Truth Always Sets You Free

Life is always easier if we tell the truth. I don't say it is not scary or hard-working. We often don't say the truth because our ego thinks we need to show up strong and put together. We believe we are supposed to be tough because that's what everyone tells us. I now find that telling the truth is a greater sign of strength. To stand up naked in the world with your heart on the table requires you to surrender to the uncertain, to the unknown... but it also blesses you with a greater easiness, with a higher dose of inner peace.

Do I Still Have Time?

While I was scrolling, a young girl with a huge backpack sat next to me. She seemed so young, wild and free. She was everything opposite to what I am feeling - old, grumpy, and locked. She reminded me of all the craziness I haven't done yet. I have been so politically correct, so eager to do things right and obey to what I think it is expected of me. I made myself a prisoner of life when life is too precious to go through it as a prisoner. This girl gave me courage to go back to those thoughts that have been secretly hidden at the back of my drawers.

A Night At Gatwick’s Airport

When I realised there were no buses or trains to Canterbury by the time I would arrive to Gatwick, I felt very pleased with my decision of returning to Lisbon. No, I'm not in Lisbon right now, I just arrived to Gatwick's airport where I will spend the night until the next available train to the end of the world. Lucky me I get to experience one of those British movie scenes in which someone leaves an unattended bag in a seat and there are at least five people from security looking at the bag and whispering "don't touch it". Exciting times.

Sensitivity, Extreme Empathy and Psi Phenomena

I used to say I was going to England with a secret research agenda. I guess I lost sight of that because I tried to fit in. My interest in mindfulness was in its capacity to increase our level of awareness and therefore expand our human consciousness. When we expand our consciousness, we do start to tap into much subtler energy fields.

Life Update: Am I Downgrading or Upgrading?

I wanted to briefly say what has been going on and what is the current state of life on this side of the screen. I started adding "PS's" one after another on my last blog post and each one of them were getting bigger and bigger so I decided the best thing to do was to copy/paste all the information and create a new post for it. So, simply put, that's what this post will be about... a life update after my anger bursts.

A Different Conception of Love

I don't know exactly what will follow, but I do know that I'm going to do a conscious effort to apply this thinking. It made me feel more deeply how life without Love is a living Hell and how we should care more about each other. When there isn't Love, there isn't a reason to smile and maybe our modern problem is exactly the absence, the lack, and misuse of Love.

Attachment, Wellbeing & New Age Crap

I honestly haven't figured out this charade. I know though that there is this anger growing and growing inside me and I'm not stopping it. I won't hide it. And maybe that's what I need to do differently this time. Maybe for once I need to be and express anger as that's how people seem to stop and listen to what I have to say. Maybe I really have to let them know how they hurt me without thinking about how they will feel afterwards. Maybe I do have to say "You are a big son of a b*" to some.

To Come Back, Or Not Come Back

I also know I'm responsible for the situation I am in. If I had established healthy boundaries from the very beginning, I'm sure my reality would be lighter now. Maybe she would had done her job and I would had finish it by now. Instead I have lots of data to analyse and write. Plus, I have no clue about how I'm going to analyse or write them down. If I could, I would scream right now and say out loud "F* this shit!". I feel like I want to punch everyone too. Since I can't, I just hope to get some sleep and wake up feeling better tomorrow morning.

Going On A Self-Retreat

January was tough. I'm still catching up broken pieces of glass and cutting myself here and there. I don't feel great everyday, but there is an inner knowing that reassures me I'm on the right path. To honour this path, I decided to review here what happened so far this year and why I will be giving myself a time to retreat during the upcoming New Moon (February 4th).

We Need A Different Kind Of Management

We need a kind of management that is more based on human connection, and which has individual, organisational and public wellbeing as a business goal. Only then we will know how to identify and recruit the best talent. Only then we will have great potential to innovate and be resilient when markets become less stable. Only then we will stop seeing work as a punishment and more like a blessing, a way to fulfil part of our identity as human beings. These are not dreamy ideas, it's all written in the books, so it's time to stop wasting money on rediscovering the wheel and start investing in more transpersonal business strategies.

My Everyday Makeup Look

First of all, I would like to start saying that this post was inspired by Erica's blog and instagram. Erica is the author of weareglamerus.com and she is probably the only Beauty Blogger I follow regularly. And one of the reasons I have been following her is because she reviews drugstore beauty products as well, which are much more purse-friendly and a great start to anyone who doesn't know much about beauty products. Second, this is totally not my usual type of post, but we are in 2019 and it's time for me to open my door a little bit more and talk about other wellbeing-related topics. Beauty is one of those topics and women who have put brains over beauty all their life shouldn't feel ashamed to talk and share about beauty.

Starting A Business From The Bottom

So this week I literally rolled up my sleeves and I started working on a project that I believe will have the capacity to generate jobs, promote intergenerational work and organisational age diversity, retrain people, reduce loneliness in old age, and address expat homesickness. To make this possible, I sat down with an old sewing machine, I figured out how to use it and where to sew. I don't know how I did it, but I managed to manifest in reality what I had seen with my mind's eye and I now have a prototype almost finished.

3 Strangers, 3 Wise Teachers in the City of Canterbury

The best walking experiences were those in which I had too many thoughts inside my head and I would then bump into some stranger who would start talking to me out of nowhere. In this post I will tell you about three different occasions in which these strangers taught or brought me some sort of special message. These were a Buddhist Monk, a Street Performer, and a Refugee.

When the Way You Love and Seek Love is All Wrong

I always said there had to be something wrong with me because my relationships were pretty much like a storm in the desert. You know what was the speech, right? "No, there is nothing wrong with you, they are the ones who did wrong...", but now I recognise and I admit that in fact there was something very, very wrong with me. To attract so many unavailable and emotionally abusive men into my life, I have been at least 50% responsible for that to happen. There was never a time in which I probably didn't act from a place of need, unworthiness, or low self-esteem when already involved with those men.

How to Create Your Life Vision

The trick is to embrace life and its gifts in the present moment without ever forgetting our inner truth. That truth is where our most personal vision reside. Our job is to connect with it and never denied it. Our job is to keep ourselves inspired and motivated to wake up each day and work towards something that is very dear to us.

A Full-Week’s Work On Codependency

God, I'm exhausted. What a crazy ride, these last couple of days. I'm grateful I'm now writing this post surrounded by a warm, fluffy blanket. I can feel the tiredness deep in my bones, but I also feel my body's tight muscles starting to relax. Slowly, very slowly, I'm entering in that state of connection where time becomes elastic and breathing the most fantastic human experience. Breathe with me... this post is intense.

The 7 Pillars of Wellbeing

When considering and talking about wellbeing, I cannot just approach the psychological aspect of it. Our mind plays an important part in the maintenance of our wellbeing, but there are other equally important aspects - the body is, of course, the most obvious one. Eastern psychology describes, however, the existence of seven different layers or bodies. These layers are for me the seven pillars of wellbeing and I bring them altogether when approaching and intervening as a wellbeing coach and psychologist.

3 Precious Love Lessons From Eat, Pray, Love

This week I reviewed one of my non-fictional favourite movies. It might have been the third or fourth time I watched, but it is amazing how we always find different nuggets of wisdom each time we watch or read something again. I rewatched the movie in two nights, because I would start watching it pretty late and then fall asleep. A "voice" had told me I needed to watch it again though, so I did my best to finish and follow it thoroughly. And guess what, here is a blog post out of it!

Action in Spite of Negative Emotions

We often become slaves of our strongest emotions. Be it extremely positive or negative, emotions have the potential side effect of throwing us off the wagon and make us ditch even the best action plan we ever designed for ourselves - who never skipped a week's workout to be with 'bae', right? In this blog post I will, nonetheless, focus on the power of negative emotions and how to manage their effect on our behaviour.

Grit Is What It Takes To Make Dreams Come True

When I started studying Positive Psychology, grit didn't exist in literature. We would talk about resilience and self-regulation a lot, but grit was only introduced as a concept further down the line, and I honestly dismissed it when it came around. I said to myself "great, another concept on the spotlight", and I never really cared to read about it. But I should have.

How To Find Your Life Purpose

We do believe we don't really know what our purpose is. The older we get, the blurrier our memory gets and the less we feel connected to our heart. Our heart never gives up on us, but it surely experiences some helplessness because at some point in our life we decided it wasn't wise to listen to it. Even if one day we get everything we once thought we needed to fulfil a dream, we probably won't, because we repeatedly refused to connect with our heart's voice and we no longer know how to repair that connection. It's all written in our heart and it's time to unlock it.

The FAT Girl Strikes Back

I'm again the fat girl. How funny. At least I'm not the super fat girl as I once was; I would say I'm chubby due to all the crisps, chocolates and muffins I ate over the second half of 2018, because I couldn't bare my life anymore. What I'm not anymore for sure is that little girl who once had to face defencelessly mean comments like: "Vanessas are normally pretty... and sexy. You are not."

The Best Christmas Present Ever

Over the past two years I have been documenting my love journey here. Every time I tried to move forward and felt happy after my long-term breakup, I saw myself dealing first with emotionally unavailable men, then with narcissistic abuse, and finally with the search for a man I didn't know it would actually exist. Now that this man showed up, I'm scared to give in and I often find myself unable to say what my heart knows: he is my very special wish come true and his poem the best Christmas present ever. Yes, I manned up at some point and he bravely read me his heart.

5 Great Ideas To Celebrate Winter Solstice With Family

Winter Solstice is only one week away! It falls on Friday, December 21st this year and marks the first day of winter. Being the longest night of the year, everyday after the Solstice will slowly grow lighter and lighter. It’s a time to celebrate that it won’t stay dark forever! I am getting really excited to celebrate the turning of the season and welcoming it in!

What Are We Doing To Our Sensitive Kids?

Kids need love, presence, and guidance. They need to be seen and listened to. They need freedom and space to let feelings arise so they can try to understand and express them. And most importantly... they need us, adults, to be courageous enough to deal with our own sensitivity and emotions. They need examples to follow and incorporate, not empty and silly behavioural rules that you can easily find in modern books of child psychology.

What Does Your Perfect Day Look Like? | Questions to Fall in Love | Q4

The perfect day for me starts with NO alarm. I like to wake up naturally, and whenever the body feels like it is ready. Then I would have a delicious breakfast, preferably outdoors. My perfect breakfast is either an avocado toast with scrambled eggs and pepper OR a nice bowl of oats sprinkled with cinnamon, honey, and banana. Ah, and a nice cup of black coffee with no sugar, because life only starts after coffee!

Sunday’s Chat & Cuppa: My First Week Back in Lisbon

There is so much more I want to write you about. We need to talk about food, the pressure that more traditional societies put on women who haven't got kids yet (I have been confronted with that at least twice in one week's time), the South European love for bureaucracy, and the difficult task of 'self-discovery' - you know, that process in which you realise you have a shadow bigger than you thought and you DON'T like that at all... *shy giggle* Oh well, at least I have plenty of oxygen to breathe in!