Posted in Travel notes

Travel note: Milan,Italy.

FullSizeRender

Usually Italy associates with delicious food: pasta, pizza, lasagne etc. However, there is much more to see in Italy than food, and in this post you will find must sees in Milan!

First things first:

  • Milan is the second biggest city of Italy after Rome
  • Located in the north of Italy
  • Holds fashion week yearly

I have been to Rome 2 years ago and honestly did not like it that much. So I had a feeling that I am not going to like Milan either before I went there, and boy was I wrong. Now Milan is one of my favourite cities in Europe, and I believe is a must visit for everyone. This is my personal top 4 places to see in Milan.

DUOMO ( MILAN CATHEDRAL)

One of the most amazing cathedral churches I have ever seen. The atmosphere inside is incredible, and if you go there on Sunday, you might be lucky enough to hear organ music, which fills the cathedral and makes it magical! Moreover you can get on top of the cathedral and observe the city from above. Also the fact that it took 6!!! centuries to build is impressive (1).

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

LAKE GARDA

Located fairly near Milan (1-1,5 hours by train) the atmosphere of the place is completely different. Even thought the lake is surrounded by quite busy towns, somehow it is peaceful. There is a beautiful castle on the lake shore, and you can also find there super delicious pizza (located in Desenzano del Garda, Pizzeria Kapperi).

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

LAKE COMO

Lake Como is quite close to Milan, 1 hour by train only. And even though Como is smaller than Garda, it is in no way less beautiful. The view is incredible: water, Alps, beautiful villas on the lake shore. The nature is so amazing that some scenes from Star Wars Episode 2 and James Bond Casino Royal were shot in Como (thanks to my friend Elizabeth, who told me this info). I don’t have enough word to describe the beauty of this place, so I will just leave lots of picture in here. If you happen to be in Milan, this is absolutely must see.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

BLUE NOTE

Last, but not least, is “Blue note” jazz club. There you will see and hear all the magic of live jazz/ blues and get a feeling like you are in some kind of 1920s american movies. So if you plan to visit Milan, check out their program and definitely go and see. I have been there twice now and it was so awesome that I cannot even describe my emotions. I cannot wait to visit Milan again and go there. Unfortunately I do not have any videos or proper pictures from there, but I will just leave here a picture with my partner in crime before the show of “Three ladies of blues” started.

P.S. I think now we have some awesome ideas what we could do when we are 60+ 🙂

20190208_204117.jpg

Surely, there is much more things to see in Milan, but these are my personal favourites, the one place I would really love to go is La Scala theatre, so hopefully one day I can make it.

Please check out some useful links below, I hope this post has inspired you to pack your things and fly to Milan 🙂

May the force be with you!

Cheers

Daria

  1. https://theculturetrip.com/europe/italy/articles/10-things-you-never-knew-about-milans-cathedral/
  2. https://www.kapperi.eu/
  3. https://www.bluenotemilano.com/
Advertisements
Posted in Notes: motivation & goals

How to get inspired? Part 2.

img_20190209_212214_902

While the Total cleaning (from the previous post) is the easiest thing you can do to clean your mind and home and get some space for new ideas, there are some more tricks to help you find the needed inspiration to start acting towards your ideas and dreams.

First of all, new season is almost here! In my area spring is coming and soon it’s gonna be so colourful and beautiful outside, but even if you are having autumn or any other season coming in your area, still, new month- new start! At least for me it is a great motivation and inspiration to start doing something, adapt some new good habits!

It is difficult to get new ideas if you are trapped in the same routine. So the best thing you can do is to get some fresh air. You can just go for a walk to a place you haven’t been before or even plan some trip within your area or abroad. Travelling allows us to get new experience and knowledge, which give us many new ideas and form some new plans. We might see some interesting business ideas, or think if we should relocate to a different city or country, or simply some interesting home design or furniture, but whatever new we see, it always makes us think and gives us some inspiration.

We are lazy creatures by nature, and our brain tries to keep us from leaving our comfort zone and once we start thinking about doing something, our brain tries to calm us down and keep us inside our routine circle. We have to force ourselves and fight our laziness if we want to get some new ideas and inspiration. Push yourself to start doing some exercise, start from something that is easy enough to do, so it wouldn’t sound too complicated and “scare you away”. I myself have started to walk from my work to home everyday, I thought: “Okay I can take a bus, but then on the other hand it is only 25 minutes walk, so it’s not so bad, I can try it!” Now it’s been few months and I walk home everyday and don’t even notice it anymore and don’t count it as an exercise, but the important thing is that I get fresh air, some time for myself and also some movement for my body! Now my plan is to start having some morning or evening routine like yoga, 10-15 mins, hopefully I can follow this plan and let’s see how it works out.

Also, start reading books. But bear in mind that I am talking about books that can bring you some value and new thoughts, not the ones that remind you of soap operas and have nothing to do with developing you and your thoughts. You can find list of “Must read books” in google, read the descriptions and choose something you think you might like and just start. You don’t have to read it if you don’t like it, but you can always try.

Finally, my last advice is – just start doing. Often inspiration comes in the process, and honestly it’s the best kind of inspiration you can get. If you have some idea, and you start moving towards it slowly, nothing feels better that realizing that you are actually able to achieve something in here. So always when I don’t feel like doing something, I just force myself, and there it is: the inspiration!

Cheers

Daria

Posted in Notes: motivation & goals

How to get inspired? Step 1.

We all want to find inspiration and motivation. However it is extremely difficult to start changing your habits and fall out of routine. So here are some tricks on how to change you life and get space for “new projects”, and today we will start with STEP 1:

THE TOTAL CLEANING!

Okay, so we cannot really get inspired if we are surrounded by mess. Moreover, how would you get new ideas if you simply do not have space for them? So the first step that will help you get motivated and inspired is cleaning your space and mind.

  1. Working space. First things first, if you want to find inspiration, you will need to clean your working space. Get rid of all the trash, organize it so that you have nothing extra just laying around, leave the things that make you think of your goals and dreams (for example I have a card from Paris and a magnet from Italy). Furthermore, you can have pictures of people that inspire you, or maybe quotes. So just surround yourself with things that will push you forward and increase your productivity.
  2. Closet cleaning. We all have tendency to keep stuff, because we think we might need it in the future, or we just do not want to throw it away. But this way our closets get full of stuff we do not use, and probably will never use. They just collect dust and create overall feeling of mess. So start with your clothes, the good rule is: everything you haven’t worn for the past 2 years has to go, everything that does not fit you anymore has to go, everything you do not like anymore but still keep has to go and all the broken clothes should be either fixed or they also have to go. You can donate clothes if they are in good condition or if they are broken you can take them to a recycling center, but anyhow get rid of them, and you will feel so fresh and ready to embrace new things. After you get rid of all the clothes you do not use anymore, you can organize your closet however suits you best, some ideas: by season, by colors, by people ( if you are not living alone). This way your wardrobe will look nice and be easy to access the clothes you need. Then you can move onto other stuff like dishes ( do you still keep some broken cups and plates?), furniture, decorations etc. Make your home look cozy, not messy. The closet cleaning will make you feel renewed, plus you can try to sell some things you do not need and get some money, which is of course always nice.
  3. General cleaning. Now that you got rid of extra stuff, clean you home: clean windows, wipe the dust from everywhere, vacuum and wipe the floors. Take out all the trash, recycle what is possible. Clean out fridge and freezer, kitchenware like microwave, stove etc. Organize your bathroom, throw away products you do not use and which are just laying around taking the space. Wash the carpets and all the towels. Make everything sparkling clean.
  4. Clean your mind. This step is the key to get out of your routine, empty your head and embrace your thoughts. We have so much going on in our brain: so many worries and  thoughts. Sometimes we are just drowning in them and cannot get out. There is simple no space for new ideas and inspiration if our mind is burdened. Start doing regular walks, get some fresh air, meditate, do whatever helps to get rid of useless worries.
  5. Keep it that way. Now this is the most difficult part, keep your  home clean and cozy, do not make extra mess. I am personally struggling with this, as it is so difficult sometimes to keep everything clean, but it is possible and I just love the look of clean home and it inspires me so much to start doing stuff.

When you are surrounded by good and clean atmosphere, it inspires you to start doing things. So if you feel like you are drowning in your routine, start with this! Get rid of the stuff that pushes you back, clean you thoughts and start moving towards the rights direction for you.

I am planning on my total cleaning this week, what about you? 🙂

Cheers!

May the force be with us!

 

 

Posted in Notes: motivation & goals

Quit New Year’s resolutions and start doing here and now!

It is that time of the year, when we all make plans, goals and new year’s resolutions. We believe that with the New Year comes fresh start. But truth is that every day is a fresh start. For me the concept of New Year’s resolutions is same as “I will start from Monday”.  We do not need to wait for particular time or day to start doing something. Just because the year has changed, it does not mean that changes will come by themselves.

The main problem comes from the fact, that we kind of feel obliged to make new year’s resolution, because everyone is doing them. But this way we create unnecessary pressure on ourselves, and force ourselves to do things we do not maybe even need or want to do. Just find something that inspires you and go from there. New Year’s resolutions are not an inspiration, and even if they are, they inspire only for a short period of time. Surround yourself with people and things that inspire you all the time, then you can achieve almost anything!

Moreover, often our resolutions are so broad, that they become not possible to achieve. We want to lose weight, read more, study more, travel more etc. But those are not specific goals, and we face huge disappointments when the year ends and we do not see the results.

Furthermore, sometimes the deadline of 1 year is not enough, so our unrealistic view of our goals also brings lots of pressure and demotivates us in the future.

Do not create goals as New Year’s resolutions, make them whenever you feel like this is what you want to achieve, and do not wait for Monday, Friday or Saturday to start moving towards them. Start now, always! And always remember to give yourself realistic deadlines, changes do not happen overnight!

P.S. When I moved to Finland, one of my dreams and goals was to go on husky rides, see Santa Claus and cross the Arctic Circle. It took me 5 years to find perfect time, money and company, but I have achieved it and my dream came true!

Cheers!

May the force be with you!

Posted in Notes: work related topics

Working in an international team: benefits and challenges.

The world is becoming more and more open nowadays. Companies become international, and boundaries are getting erased. It is more common to move to foreign countries and find a job there (that is partly my story as well). If we take US as an example, according to Seattle times post from May 2018 (1):

The number of foreign-born workers in the U.S. labor force has reached 27.4 million, or 17.1 percent of the total number of workers…

That is an impressive number, and it is only in US! Also companies have their offices around the globe, so you do not need to necessarily move anywhere in order to work with the foreign colleagues, as current technologies and internet allow to communicate and do tasks together online. So our working environment becomes more international, and while it has its’ benefits, it also brings challenges.

The main benefits of international work teams are:

  1. Experience exchange. When team members have different cultures and background, it helps to broaden the big picture. It adds new perspective to the tasks and sometimes make it easier and faster to solve.
  2. Learning about other cultures. While working in an international team you can learn a lot about other cultures, some interesting facts and behavior features.

Even though these benefits have a great value for the team work, there are many challenges, which multinational working team can face:

  1. Misunderstanding. Even people from the same country and city, who speak the same languages can misunderstand each other, when it comes to people from different parts of the world working together, it is very difficult to always understand each other. This can lead to delays during the work process.
  2. Cultural differences. From personal experience of working in the international team: our cultures affect our way of working and dealing with things. Some cultures are easier to work with, some are harder, but sometimes you can get really stuck in the work process just because you see things differently.

The only solution to the struggles inside international team at work is patience. We are all in the same boat, and we just have to “keep on rowing”.

Cheers!

May the force be with you!

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.seattletimes.com/explore/careers/immigrants-now-make-up-17-of-the-u-s-labor-force/
Posted in Notes: motivation & goals

How to start acting on your ideas?

We probably have thousands of ideas going through our minds during one day. But we rarely act on any of them. Of course it is impossible to do something about each and every idea we have, but we can do something about the best ones. So let’s say we would be sitting on a couch, and suddenly thinking: “should I go for a jog?”.  According to “The 5 second rule” by Mel Robbins (1) from that moment you will have approximately 5 seconds to actually start doing something before your brain hits the brakes. You will know that happened, when your thoughts will be something like:

  • “Well the weather is actually not so good today”
  • “Well I can do it tomorrow, I am pretty tired”

But ideas without execution are pointless. And unfortunately, no matter how great idea you have, you will never feel like doing it, because it is just easier that way. So what to do?

As said, you will have about 5 seconds to do something about it, so the first thing you can do (depending on the idea), write it down! Because when you do it, you cannot pretend like you did not think of it. Or for the previous example with jogging, get up and put jogging clothes on immediately, this small action will change your thoughts from “Actually I don’t feel like doing it” to “Well I anyway dressed-up already, so I should go”. There it is! Small action=big result! Because when we have already done something about our idea, we do not want it to go to waste, so we feel like we should continue doing something about it.

Then think of motivation for your idea. You do not go jog for the sake of jogging. You want to be healthy, sportive, in a good shape etc. That is motivation, which will drive you towards actions.

Also, you can share your idea with someone, and then you will feel like you have to do it now, because you have already said you will. Anyways, saying it out loud helps a lot to force yourself towards actions.

If you are afraid that your idea will not work out and that is why you are not doing anything about it, TRY! Just try it out, maybe it does work, maybe it does not, but you will never know for sure until you try. Do not give up too early.

It is difficult to force yourself to start some action and movement, but try this exercise during next week:

  • write down your ideas when they pop up in your mind
  • do something about each one of them, something small, maybe check information from the Internet, or go to a gym this week once, or something like this
  • in the end of the week check your list and write down your reflection, how do you feel? do you feel more productive? did you get out a little bit out of your comfort zone?

Not every idea is doable, but you will never know it for sure until you try!

Cheers

May the force be with you!

Sources:

  1. https://melrobbins.com/blog/the-5-second-rule/

P.S. you can also check out Mel’s video on Ted talks, very inspirational!