• 12: Understanding Your Negative Emotions

    Episode Summary of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 12: Understanding Your Negative Emotions

    This episode gets real on negative emotions despite society where we avoid negativity and put up a front of positivity always. Learn about why you have negative emotions and how you create negativity in your mind. We also delve into practical tips and strategies on how to be less negative.

    What you'll learn from this episode

    • Why we feel negative emotions
    • How you create negativity in your mind
    • The role and impact of attention and focus on negativity
    • An instant life hack on being less negative
    • How a simple shift in mindset can change your perspective on negativity

    Key Quotes from this Episode

    Now when you understand that your thoughts determine your reality, you can understand how to make yourself feel certain emotions, you can generate how you want to feel.

    Phi Dang

    Energy flows where focus goes.

    Phi Dang

    You can focus on emotions you don’t want or focus on emotions you do want.

    Phi Dang

    Featured Resources on the episode

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 12: Understanding Your Negative Emotions

    You are listening to Episode 12 of the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang: Understanding Your Negative Emotions.

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 12 – Understanding Your Negative Emotions Begins]

    Hi Beautiful Soul, so glad you’re here. 

    I want to start this episode with flagging I’m recording in a new location for the podcast so there may be a little background noise a car and bird chip here or there but I didn’t want that to stop me from recording and releasing a new podcast for you.

    Genuinely I usually record in a my clothes wardrobe nook but I’ve been barred from that because my boyfriend is currently ill and so I’m in the office recording it.

    A wardrobe nook – yes it’s actually the best place to record because it keeps all the sound insular and all my clothes muffles background noise. A sneak peak into life now – I love it because one day I know I’ll have my own pro podcasting room in the future – it’s on my manifestation list.  

    How are you doing today? Really how are you doing?

    I have something to confess I had a whole other episode scripted and ready to go but an immense wave of grief hit me.

    It was as to no surprise for it was my dad’s birthday the other day, he would have been in his late sixties.

    It was such a wave of grief that I truly struggled, I felt very low and I have to say every day I cried. 

    Now? I feel okay. I’m good and it’s because through self development and having a coach myself I have learnt to navigate negative emotions. 

    To add to this, this time, last year, whilst I also cried I didn’t feel as low, I was feeling quite upbeat and positive.

    And that’s emotions for you.

    They are waves, they’ll always go up and down, some will be high and low, other times still and flat.

    One thing is for sure, in life you will always be navigating emotions and negativity more often than not given our brain is negatively biased to protect us.


    Getting real on social media - the truth about positivity

    As a life coach and as someone with a large community of over 10,000 followers on Instagram – I have made a commitment to myself, my clients and community to always be honest and true. That is to not pretend on social media and in real life that life is all sunshine, rainbows and unicorns because it’s not.

    On social media there is a facade of perfection we put up highly stylised images, we always look happy, in fact we curate so much of it. What images we select, how we portray ourselves and somewhere along the line some of us have believed that it’s real.

    Always happy, always camera ready, always positive. I stand for positivity, authenticity and integrity. To be true. To show you when I feel the lows – what it’s really like and it is sometimes a chaotic mess, a roller coaster. Even as someone is known as the Positivity Queen, I still feel negative sometimes because I am human and positivity doesn’t exclude negativity exclusively. 

    I’ll repeat that again because that’s an important distinction: positivity doesn’t exclude negativity. They require each other. More on that later.

    There’s a misconception as a life coach that all we preach is being happy and positive all the time however that’s not the case. As a life coach I teach my clients to feel the full spectrum of their emotions and practical tools and strategies to understand and navigate their emotions.

    Let it also be known even when you learn tools and strategies, how your mind works though brain based coaching there will still be times you feel negative.

    I have talked to people and have clients who you would think have perfect lives on the outside but on the inside it’s a different reality. Don’t let appearances or social media fool you. 

    Social media along with the media in general – TV shows, movies, radio has somehow led us all to believe that we are always so happy farting rainbows and glitter or that sadness is glamourised in this aching, cool way.

    I want to talk about what other people don’t talk about or are scared to and that is negative emotions because we all go through it.

    So let’s get real on negative emotions on understanding them and owning them.

    Negativity by default

    When I first start working with clients, a lot of the time they think they are just negative by default which is true. Yes. Humans have a negative bias which is evolutionary to keep us safe, being negative compelled us into instant action in an immediate return environment.

    Rustle in the bushes defaults to dangerous animal, take instant action flee which means you are safe. Interpret the rustle as just wind meant no action meant potential of death if that was in fact a dangerous animal.

    For more on this concept, listen to Episode 10 of the Podcast, How to be a Warrior Not Worrier.

    How you create negativity is through your thoughts

    Now acknowledging we have a negative bias, we create our own negativity through our thoughts.

    The world is nothing but neutral circumstances, it is our thinking that determines our feelings of positivity or negativity.

    For example, rain on a weekend is a natural circumstance. 

    Your thinking would determine if that’s a positive or negative, on person may jump to a negative because they can no longer have a picnic outside whereas someone else sees it as a positive – they don’t have to water the plans outside.

    So bring awareness and to attention to your thoughts. How do they create your reality?

    Negativity isn’t only created by overt thoughts in your mind, negativity creeps in through subtle ways.

    Judging others. Criticising others. Shaming. Jumping to conclusions…

    “That won’t work for me”

    “I can’t do that”

    “I don’t like”

    “I’m too tired”

    “It’s too hard” 

    “I’ve never been able to”

    And of course the number 1 way negativity builds in to your life: Complaining.

    Try cutting out complaining for one whole day and see how you feel.

    Now when you understand that Your thoughts determine your reality, you can understand how to make yourself feel certain emotions, you can generate how you want to feel.

    Is it easy? No. Is it possible, yes.

    The impact of attention and focus on negativity

    Energy flows where focus goes. 

    Simply put, focus on the negative and you have a negative mindset. Focus on the positive and you have a positive mindset.

    You can focus on the fact how much you hate mint ice cream or focus on how much you love honeycomb.

    You can focus on everything that’s going wrong in your life or focus on everything that is going right in your life.

    You can focus on emotions you don’t want or focus on emotions you do want.

    Don’t just focus on what you want, find what you want.

    Find something everyday to be positive about.

    Have an open mind, allow yourself to feel positive. Look at kids, they are always so open and get ridiculously happy and excited about what we consider the small things: sand, waves, puppies, butterflies, being outside…

    Why it's hard not to be negative

    For many it’s easy to be negative – to criticise, to dismiss, to be skeptical. It’s harder to consciously and intentionally to do the work to be positive – to acknowledge the good, to purposely change your thoughts. Thinking on purpose requires relentless consistency and it can be exhausting. You have to catch yourself having the thoughts and not only decide to change but to do the work to make the change happen.

    It’s like what Socrates says “the secret to change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but building the new.”

    It doesn’t help that your brain is also lazy but it’s understandable it takes up so much energy on a subconscious level you don’t even realise. The brain is pumping your blood around your body, breathing automatically, blinking automatically… it can’t help but be a bit lazy and want to do things efficiently.

    It’s easier for your brain to give into the negativity, to wallow even though it knows if it does the work it can be more positive. The thoughts you’ve been thinking repeatedly are so comfortable and easy like taking the same route to work everyday vs trying a new one which many cut down minutes off your commute but that involves energy, effort and time upfront. 

    Thought work on negativity

    https://phidang.com/05-river-of-misery/You can even get caught in a place where you catch your thoughts, you intellectually understand you are having a negative thought but you feel stuck because you feel like you can’t change it. That’s the real catch you can. You only can’t at this moment because you believe the thought, that because you thought it, it must be real and you aren’t open to other possibilities such as the thought isn’t true or that the thought isn’t a fact or maybe even that you are wrong (oh hello ego!). More on this on Episode 5, River of Misery. 

    All of the thought work it takes to overcome negativity requires tiny leaps of faith. To be willing to feel your emotions and realise it won’t kill you and that you could be wrong. To be willing to do the work knowing it feels terrible right now but will become easier and second nature like working out. Lifting the weights feels impossible and heavy at first, but over time with consistent practice, it becomes effortless until it’s time to reach the next level.

    Negativity isn't all bad, negativity serves a purpose

    https://phidang.com/03-beyond-the-law-of-attraction-the-12-universal-laws/I’ll let you ponder on that for a moment whilst I state the fact that negativity itself isn’t all bad, in fact it serves a purpose.

    Positivity doesn’t exist without negativity.

    Light doesn’t exist without dark.

    It’s Ying and Yang, the law of correspondence (more on that on Episode 3 Beyond the Law of Attraction, the 12 Universal Laws).

    How would we know happiness without sadness?

    What would life be to you if you were only happy all the time?

    Negativity raises our self awareness and like our cave man ancestors it drives us to take action.

    If we feel unhappy it forces us to look at our lives, to see what we want and don’t want, to drive us to create an intentional life where we are being our must truest and authentic selves. 

    Resisting negativity makes life harder and more negative

    Negativity has become a huge force that messes with our minds nowadays because we cocoon ourselves in double negativity.

    We make it more negative by resisting.

    I’m not meant to feel negative.

    I can’t feel negative.

    I shouldn’t feel negative.

    These negative thoughts mean there’s something wrong with me.

    Think about if if you are already feeling negative and then judge yourself on being negative, you are in a double negative situation.

    It’s unnecessary for you to beat yourself up about feeling negative because it doesn’t help.

    In fact the more you resist, the more it persists. 

    I think about waves. Imagine how much harder it is to swim against the current and tide as opposed to just going along with it and seeing where it takes you.

    How does it feel to resist as opposed to allow.

    Allow feels much nicer for me, much calmer. My mind is at peace. 

    The energy is completely different. 

    Most of us don’t allow our emotions, we don’t feel it the full way through so it’s weird sometimes we don’t actually know how it fully feels. We resist which creates suffering, we get scared of the suffering, we future predict all the discomfort we will feel and we resist.

    Instead of resisting and wanting yourself to be positive, can you find the neutral ground?

    Neutralising negativity, the first step to being less negative

    For example if you think you’re not good enough, it takes a huge leap to suddenly say I am the most amazing person but it’s much easier to have a neutral thought like “I don’t feel good enough right now and that’s okay. I am human”.

    That thought is more neutral, there is acceptance in there and the thought opens up possibilities to the fact hey maybe I’m not good enough isn’t true. 

    It’s like on a scale going from a -5 to a -3, that in itself is progress. 

    Try it! It’s like an instant life hack, allow the thought, drop the I should feel this instead or I shouldn’t feel this or it should be different and the edge of suffering melts away. 

    Allowing over resisting.

    If there was a free voucher for bungee jumping it’s much easier for someone who loves heights and adrenaline to take it up then someone who is terrified of heights.

    Allowing over resisting. 

    Allowing is tolerating. Yes there may still be slight discomfort like an ache or headache but that’s okay. It won’t kill you. You will live, you can go on with life.

    Negativity can become automatic

    That’s the funny thing about our minds. It automatically jumps to the conclusion and equates negativity with suffering.

    It makes sense.

    If every time you ate carrot cake and felt sick, your mind equates carrot cake to making you have a bad reaction, that’s your only experience at current. 

    This is the same with feeling negativity automatically makes you suffer.

    However imagine we found out that it was the flour making you sick and replace it with gluten free flour. At first your mind will still be like no i’m not eating the carrot cake, every time I do it makes me sick. It’s understandable because your mind has never had the experience that carrot cake won’t make you sick. Your brain panics and resists the new carrot cake.

    It takes a little tiny leap of faith knowing that this new cake won’t because it has gluten free flour. Once you do you realise oh I don’t feel sick and it’s okay.

    That’s the same with allowing yourself to feel your negative emotions. You think it will be awful but in reality its okay. It’s uncomfortable, it’s hard but you are capable. You can feel hard things. 

    Approaching negativity with curiosity

    To make this process easier, shift your mindset from one of judgement of yourself for the emotions you have to curiosity.

    Sit with the emotions, welcome them, get curious to see what emotions mean.

    What are they telling you about what is going on in your life?

    How can you see your emotions as an ally not a foe?

    How can you learn and grow from the current emotions at present? 

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 12: Understanding Your Negative Emotions

    If it’s one thing you practice from this podcast is to try allowing over resisting.

    If you’re listening along and thinking “I’m so sick of having negative thoughts on repeat all the time”

    Do you identify yourself as a negative person and feel stuck and helpless, as if you will be negative for the rest of your life?

    Do you want to wake up feeling confident and assured that no matter what happens you will be able to handle it?

    If you are, let’s chat visit my website phidang.com or DM me on Instagram @thephidang because I can help.

    I’ve gone from the depths of anxiety, depression and grief to someone who is able to navigate the hardest of emotions from the grief of losing my dad at the age of 20 and experiencing life in negativity and being numb and emotionless.

    I can teach you how to rewire your brain for positivity as I do with my clients. I’ve only got 3, 1:1 coaching spots left so get in touch with me now. 

    Enjoy your day beautiful soul, next week’s episode will be the one I actually scripted for this week “Your Brain is a Liar”. It’s an eye opening episode where you realise how often your brain lies to you… Speak to you next Tuesday. Love and positivity.

    [Episode 12 – Understanding Your Negative Emotions]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

    Click here to read more

  • 10: How to be a Warrior not a Worrier

    Episode Summary of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 10: How to be a Warrior not a Worrier

    Learn the biological and evolutionary reason as to why you worry. Find out what it means to have a warrior mindset in addition to practical ways you can be a warrior not a worrier.

    What you'll learn from this episode

    • The biological and evolutionary reason why humans worry
    • What a warrior mindset means
    • Practical strategies to be a warrior not a worrier

    Key Quotes from this Episode

    Don’t let others or society define it for you, figure out what success is for you.

    Phi Dang

    Don’t let others or society define it for you, figure out what success is for you.

    Phi Dang

    Don’t let others or society define it for you, figure out what success is for you.

    Phi Dang

    Featured Resources on the episode

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 10: How to be a Warrior not a Worrier

    You are listening to episode 10 of the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang: How to be a Warrior not Worrier.

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 10 – How to Create and Have Success in 2021 Begins]

    Hello beautiful souls! How are you going today? So happy to have you join me on another episode of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    It’s been a busy start to 2021 for me with all things coaching and I wanted to shout out some of the incredible wins my clients are having.

    Shout out to M, after one week of coaching we are already seeing huge shifts. When we first spoke, he described feeling numb when it came to dating women and he’s already called in a second date with a lovely lady who’s stirred some feelings within him!

    Shout out to J, a long time client who I recently reconnected with, he is continuing to work through his journey of his past with his family and past relationships. He’s recently opened up new perspectives after feeling very stuck for the last couple of years.

    Shout out to another J, a new client who after one session she’s put into practice her insights from our session and made 3 new groups of friends and did a huge social media clean up, the final step of letting go of her recent break up and channeling all of that time and energy to herself and her growth. All amazing wins I am so happy to share!

    If you are thinking about working with me, I’d love to chat and be shouting out your inevitable wins on the podcast sometime soon too! Details in show notes as usual or you can connect with me on my website phidang.com or instagram @thephidang.


    On worry in relation to your family and self

    Today’s episode is titled “How to be a warrior, not a worrier”. I saw this quote online and it really resonated with me. It’s a gem of a quote and shifts your mindset to one of power and confidence – that is something that I am all about. 

    My parents, particularly my mum, used to worry about me and I feel this was exacerbated by the fact that I am an only child.They would worry about life in general – what’s going on in the world, reading newspapers daily and watching the news every night including all weather updates, having enough money to pay bills, being safe from danger (stay away from this, don’t do that) and so forth. The constant worrying was most certainly passed down to myself as a personality trait. 

    I still do worry from time to time but to be honest I don’t really any more as I have full faith and confidence in myself and my capabilities. However rewind time to even 3 or 4 years ago, when I was younger I used to worry a lot.

    Will he like me? Will I be alone forever? Will anyone want to date me?

    Will I pass this test? Will I get this job? Will I be stuck in this job forever?

    Is my outfit okay? Will people notice this on my face?
    Am I really sick? Will I die? Do I have cancer? Is what I have something that has no cure? 

    If I spend this money, will I get my money’s worth? What if I wasted my money?

    And the list goes on… in fact sometimes I would end up in worry loops about worry!

    Am I worrying too much? Worrying doesn’t help and I logically know that so why am I worrying? Is something wrong with me? And then it loops round and round.

    Are you nodding your head along? Your parents worried a lot? You worry a lot? There’s an actual reason as to why this is. Humans are wired to worry. Worrying is a part of human biology and human evolution.

    The biological and evolutionary reason why you worry and why humans worry

    Worrying itself is not a problem, in fact worrying serves a purpose: to keep you safe and process potential threats. Worrying is a problem when it interferes with your life, is acutely intense and lasts longer than it usually does for you. 

    The theories of immediate-return environment and the delayed return environment are used to explain why humans worry.

    Immediate-return environment

    Humans used to live in an immediate-return environment, 500 years ago – In reference to time and history, 500 years is relatively recent.

    Our worries were immediate in nature as cavemen lived a hunter-gatherer lifestyle. Worrying was very useful in the moment as it helped us take action in the moment rather than later for survival. 

    Your stomach grumbles > you feel worried about food > you find food > your worry is relieved.

    Your mouth feels parched and dry > you haven’t drunk enough water today > you feel worried and dehydrated > you find water > your worry is relieved

    You hear a storm brewing > you worry about getting wet and being cold > you find shelter > your worry is relieved.

    You feel cold > you worry about dying > you light a fire > your worry is relieved.

    All of the actions you take deliver immediate results, gratification and therefore you lived in the present moment.

    In fact animals still live in an immediate-return environment. As Duke University professor Mark Leary put it, “A deer may be startled by a loud noise and take off through the forest, but as soon as the threat is gone, the deer immediately calms down and starts grazing. And it doesn’t appear to be tied in knots the way that many people are.”

    Delayed return environment

    Nowadays we live in a delayed return environment where our decisions don’t immediately benefit us in in the moment.

    Some examples for you. 

    When you work, you get paid either fortnightly or monthly. When you work hard, you don’t get promoted immediately, you do after hitting your key performance indicators over time.

    If you save money now, you’ll have enough for when you retire later in life.

    When you start exercising and eating healthier foods, you’ll see results over time, you don’t lose weight or get fit immediately. 

    The nature of a delayed return environment results in uncertainty as a great source of worry. There are no guarantees to most things we do and in fact most of the choices we make today won’t immediately benefit us. 

    Going to school and university doesn’t guarantee you’ll get a job.

    Going on a date doesn’t mean you will meet the one, your soul mate. 

    Investing in stocks, doesn’t guarantee you’ll make returns. 

    Put simply, our brain is not designed to solve the problems of a delayed return environment. Our environment and way of living has changed rapidly, but our brains have not. Our brain hasn’t evolved to live in a delayed return environment.

    Now you know the biological and evolutionary reason as to why we worry, let’s talk about being a warrior not a worrier.

    What is the Warrior mindset?

    Before I share how you can be a warrior, not a warrior, let me set up the stage, what is the warrior persona?

    A warrior triumphs whereas a worrier cowers. A warrior has the rock solid, unshakable belief in them-self. They know how to handle anything that comes their way. A warrior is brave, they are not afraid of the unknown and even if they are, they put themselves out there. They confront and face their fears. They are not scared of challenges because they know they will rise to the challenge. In fact, warriors embrace all opportunities to grow because they know they have so much to gain. Warriors win massive wars, by focusing on winning one small battle at a time.

    Now we’ve established the warrior persona, I’m going to share 5 ways how you can be a warrior not a worrier.

    5 ways on how to be a Warrior not a Worrier

    1. Recognise that behind every emotion including worry, lies a thought.

    Your emotions are a result of your thoughts. Therefore if you want to change your emotions, you have to change your thoughts. 

    Bring awareness to your thoughts. Consciously choose to accept and run with a thought or reject and deny a thought. 

    Slice through unhelpful thoughts like a warrior with your sword of evidence. 

    Our thoughts are often stories or assumptions we create so question the thought – is there factual evidence to support this thought or am I making something up?

    2. Focus on what you can control and accept what you cannot change.

    I have two great exercises to share with you to help. The first is the dichotomy of control circles.

    On a piece of paper you draw two circles. The first being what you can control and the second being what you can’t control. No point worrying about what you can’t control because nothing you do will influence it. A super simple exercise.

    The second exercise I have for you to be a warrior and not a worrier is the circles of control. On a piece of paper draw a giant circle, a circle within that and a small circle within that. All in all it looks like a bullseye.

    The centre is what you can control – the circle of control. This is all within you that you can directly control such as your thoughts, your behaviour, your attitude, your effort, your energy, your actions and so forth.

    The circle outside the centre circle is the circle of influence, what you can influence such as your network and relationships. Emphasis on influence – you can’t make or force it. For example you can talk to the people you know and try convince someone, if you’re looking at a promotion you can influence this by building strong relationships with colleagues, putting yourself out there for more projects to take on and so forth.

    The largest is everything else outside of your control and influence. For example things like a global pandemic like coronavirus, the weather, strangers you don’t know, traffic, the economy, policies, the media and so forth.

    Onto the third way to be a warrior and not worrier.

    3. Be strategic, have a game plan and take action.

    Always be prepared. Identify what worries you and create a solution to the worry. It’s not enough to just create the game plan, you also have to take action.

    For example, if you are worried about getting a job, create an actionable plan on how to get a job. Chunk it down so it’s not overwhelming. For example if you want to get a job you need to apply for jobs. In order to apply for jobs you need a cover letter and resume. Start there! When you break it down it’s not so intimidating. 

    Another example is if you are worried you won’t have a partner, create an actionable plan on how to get a partner. In order to have a partner, you need to go on dates. In order to go on dates, you need to meet people. People are candidates for partners. How do you meet people? You can do that by going outside your house or within your home through applications and websites.

    A game plan also involves having coping strategies for worry such as setting aside time to worry such as 10 minutes then moving on as an example and a support network you can turn to when it becomes all overwhelming.

    If you need help creating a personalised game plan, strategies to cope and support, let’s chat. I work with clients to create a specific, actionable plan with clear steps that can be measured in order to achieve their goals. 

    Whether that’s getting a promotion, changing jobs, finding a partner, becoming an entrepreneur to make money online – anything is possible. A life coach is all about life! Just to add, not many people know that as part of my coaching, you’ll have access to me Monday to Friday so I can answer any questions or concerns that pop up along your journey to hitting your goals and up levelling your self! 

    4. Believe in yourself

    You are an amazing person. You’ve gone through so many hard things, times you didn’t think you would make it yet here you are. 

    This wasn’t by accident or change, this is because of you. You are strong, you are smart, you are capable and you are resilient. You know how to overcome obstacles and challenges.

    In fact when a worry comes up, repeat this mantra: I am a warrior, not a warrior.

    5. Work on your strength

    I mean strength physically and in your mind.

    It’s well known that exercise can alleviate anxiety. Exercises alleviates stress, provides a beneficial distraction and boosts your feel good endorphins. The high from accomplishing exercise will fuel you to conquer not only workout but whatever else is on your mind too. Physically you’ll even start to take the form of a warrior by getting super fit.

    Mentally, to work on your strength is to get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Do something small everyday that makes you feel uncomfortable to work on your mental strength such as running for an extra 5 minutes to keep your heart-rate going or try a cold shower!

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 10: How to be a Warrior not a Worrier - Close

    To wrap it all up there are 5 ways to be a warrior not a worrier.

    1. Recognise that behind every emotion including worry, lies a thought.

    2. Focus on what you can control and accept what you cannot change.

    3. Be strategic, have a game plan and take action.

    4. Believe in yourself

    5. Work on your strength

    Be a warrior not a worrier! Every warrior has their teacher, so if you’re looking for your teacher, it would be an honour to be your teacher. 

    Thank you so much for joining me today beautiful souls. If you’ve enjoyed listening along, I would appreciate you sharing this with your friends or leaving a review, it would really help me to spread the word on personal development. 

    I’ll catch you next Tuesday with a new episode of the Grow Through It Podcast.

    Love and Positivity.

    [Episode 10 – How to Be a Warrior not  a Worrier Ends]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

    Click here to read more

  • 05: River of Misery

    Episode Summary of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 05: River of Misery

    This episode is all about the river of misery. A deeply uncomfortable place between where you start and where you want to be. I talk about different scenarios where the river of misery happens such as in dating, relationships, ex partners, health, weight and fitness. I share practical tips on overcoming the river of misery too.

    What you'll learn from this episode

    (01:32) Why I am talking about the river of misery
(02:00) How you feel in the river of misery

    (02:26) What is the river of misery?

    (02:51) The pond of misery (ain’t just a river of misery!)

    (03:43) Example of river of misery (e.g. dating a commitment phobe, someone who won’t commit to you, an ex partner)

    (06:59) A willing river of misery, my battle with my weight and fitness 
    (09:47) My river of misery when I got myself got stuck (relationships related)
    (12:40) Dealing with feelings of shame, embarrassment and disappointment
    (13:23) Falling into old habits and ways of thinking

    (13:42) The hardest part of being in the river of misery

    (14:27) Truth bomb on the river of misery

    (15:42) The brain and the river of misery

    (17:39) Getting out of the river of misery

    Key Quotes from this Episode

    Featured Resources on the episode

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 05: River of Misery​, Show Transcript

    You are listening to episode 5: River of Misery.

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 05 – River of Misery: Begins]

    Hi beautiful soul, are you feeling stuck and frustrated right now? Perhaps overwhelmed by everything going on in your life. If not, can you think back to a time when you were?

    Why am I asking you these questions? Well this podcast episode is all about the river of misery. Oh yes, the river of misery.

    When I first started to think about this episode I didn’t know where to begin or if I had enough material. Turns out I have a lot of information, practical examples and juicy insights to share so this episode may be on the longer side to manage your expectations.

    The reason I’m talking to you about the river of misery today is that it continually pops up in my life coaching, when I talk to my clients and loved ones. At one point or the other whether they come to me as they are in the river of misery or experience it on the journey to making their goals and dreams happen, the river of misery is something we can all relate to at some point in our lives and it is not enjoyable.

    When I think of the river of misery, I feel as if there is a lot going on against me and I feel overwhelmed. It feels like a river full of rapids coming at full force towards me and I’m struggling to stay afloat. The whole time I just feel just so damn uncomfortable. I feel tired and I just want it to end.

    It’s a horrible place to be because you feel so frustrated, trapped and annoyed.

    What is the river of misery?

    The river of misery is place where you feel deeply uncomfortable and overwhelmed by everything that’s happening in your life.

    How you end up in the river of misery may be by choice or not, but whether you continue to stay in the river of misery and end up stuck there… that’s a choice.

    Let me run you by some scenarios of how this comes to be.

    Pond of Misery

    The pond of misery is well, safe. You know what to expect in the pond. Nothing drastic is happening, nothing is going to harm you. It’s not terribly uncomfortable like a river of misery but it’s unsatisfactory. Things could be better than being in the pond at all.

    To get to where you want to be, now that’s a river of misery.

    The river of misery involves being uncomfortable and doing hard things to get the result you want.

    All these thoughts push against you going into this river for your safety, after all your brain has evolved to protect you. Your brain is always looking for danger.

    “It is going be a lot of hard work”

    “It is going to take a lot of investment. Time, energy, effort, money”

    “What if I do all this stuff and it doesn’t work out, what if it is not worth it?”

    “The pond is not that bad is it…? It’s not that bad… it’s not that bad you try to convince yourself.”

    First type of river of misery and a river of misery scenario: Dating, relationships, ex partners

    Let’s apply this example to a real life scenario such as getting stuck in and involved in an entanglement with someone you are seeing who won’t commit to being in a relationship with you or an ex partner even.

    You’re not happy with the situation, this person you’re seeing is also dating other people and you’re probably fifth priority after their work, family, friends and other people they are dating.

    I mean at least you get the occasional cuddle, probably the non strings attached intimacy (lets be real there are a lot of strings!!!), hey maybe they’ll even reply back to a text quickly once in a while.

    It’s miserable to do a degree, but you’re some what used to it and familiar with it even though you are craving a fulfilling and committed relationship where you are a priority, when they make time for you, when you feel so loved and secure.

    So in this pond of misery, no one is putting a gun to your head saying you have to keep seeing this person. Can you see the only person who got you in this pond of misery and is keeping you there is you?

    So how do you get out of this pond of misery? Jumping into the river of misery to get to the other side: land.

    The river of misery kicks it up a notch, you’re not dealing with a pond anymore, you’re dealing with a rapid river.

    The river of misery for this scenario means letting go and cutting off the person you are dating. It means being alone for the time being. It means working on yourself and reflecting on how you got into this situation. Why you are in this situation. It means eventually having to start meeting people and going on dates again. It means opening up with new people as you date.

    Your brain in this scenario starts panicking. This is hard! This is a lot of work! Let me go back to the pond! I wasn’t happy there but at least I was comfortable. I accepted it, I got used to it.

    The river of misery won’t be comfortable or cruisy. I won’t lie to you, it’s called the river of misery for a reason. But what if you knew that going through the river of misery was worth it? That on the other side on the land, is a loving person who is ready to commit and have a beautiful relationship with you.

    Are you willing to swim the river of misery and go through temporary discomfort and pain to get what you want? Like I mentioned in the previous episode number 4 on mental fitness and taking your brain to the gym, discomfort is the currency of your success just like working out at the gym to get fitter, leaner and stronger.

    So back to the river of misery. It won’t last forever.

    Eventually it gets easier as you get used to it. But in order to get to this place, you have to start in the deep end of the river of misery and swim towards land. You have to be willing to endure the river and to keep swimming until you get to the land. If you swim back to the pond, you’ll lose progress, battle the river and have to start again.

    The brain likes security and comfort, that is how it’s hardwired. Can you reassure your brain that you are going through the river of misery for a purpose?

    Can you put your purpose at the forefront of your mind? Can you feel and visualise how amazing it is going to be when you make your dreams come true?

    My river of misery: health, fitness and weight

    I’ve been in this type of river of misery lately.

    My pond was being unhappy with my body and fitness levels.

    To be completely transparent with you since COVID-19 hit, I stopped going to the gym 4 times a week where I used to weight train and do cardio based classes and now I don’t do any any exercise at all except walking and swimming.

    I started eating a lot more because I was either bored or wanted comfort during hard times. I gained weight, in fact I am the heaviest I have ever been in my life. And not it’s definitely muscle, it’s definitely fat I think.
Some of the clothes I own, I can no longer fit into or I have to really suck in my belly the whole time I’m wearing them – not fun and super uncomfortable.

    Sure, a quick fix is to buy bigger clothing sizes but that doesn’t address the core issue.

    Addressing the core issue is working on my mindset and getting fit – jumping into the river of misery by choice. The land is being happy, healthy and fit. So what does this river involve?

    Waking up earlier to do some exercise before work. Making time to do grocery shopping on the weekend so I can prepare healthy meals instead of turning to instant food or processed food I can reheat. I’m embarrassed to admit this to you but I always have cans of chicken noodle soup at home for when I am too busy to cook! Let’s not forget the frugal favourite Mi Goreng too – 2 minute noodles. Can you tell I really like noodles? 

    Anyway back to it.

That in itself is a river of misery, adapting to changing tastes (because I wish salads tasted as good as instant noodles or frozen pizza for lunch especially on a really busy day when it’s so comforting). 

    There is a river of misery working on my mindset, why I can’t be happy now at my body is and why it has to be when certain criteria is met. 

This whole situation is a river of misery but its worth it knowing my end result, happy, healthy and fit!

    The second type of river of misery: being stuck

    Now there’s also another river of misery which is when you are just stuck because you are so miserable with how you are, your thoughts and the world around you.

    I’ve seen this with my clients who are stuck in their past and finding it hard to get over someone because they thought they were the one. I’ve seen this in clients who think that they can’t be positive because they just have so many negative thoughts all the time and they think they are powerless to change it. I’ve seen this with my clients who continually compare themselves to other people and end up feeling insecure and jealous all the time.

    My second type of river of misery: being single

    I remember being in this type of river of misery because well I got myself there and I was keeping myself stuck (even though it took me a while to consciously and truly realise what I was doing!).

    At one point in my life when I was single, I was so frustrated and sick of dating because nothing seemed to be working out for me. At the time I felt I just kept dating people who weren’t looking for a relationship time and time again. This really sucked for me. It was made harder by the fact I had been single for long stretches of time, years!

    To get to the other side where I was happy dating and enjoying dating I needed to do the hard work to figure out why this was happening to me. After all the common denominator in all the scenarios was well… me!

    It was easy to just blame anything and everything outside of me, to be honest.

    “Oh there’s no good people to do date out there, they are all taken”

    “Everyone is a commitment phobe these days, everyone always thinks that the grass is greener on the other side”

    “It’s so hard to find a relationship these days”

    “Are there any decent and respectful people out there dating anymore?”

    Do you know what was hard, really hard?

    Realising it wasn’t any of these things at all.

    That in fact, it was in fact my thoughts.

    That was a bitter pill to swallow but do you know what was even harder than this realisation?

    Jumping into the river of misery.

    Doing the work to get to a place where I was in a good mindset, enjoying dating and seeing it as a fun journey.

    Doing the work meant confronting myself. Being honest with myself. Not pretending or saying the right things. Pure honesty.

    What was I really looking for?

    Why did I want a relationship?

    Was I looking for love outside myself before being getting to be in love with who I was and who I am?

    Did I know my worth? Did I actually think I was worthy of happy, loving and healthy relationship?

    Why was I dating people who weren’t looking for a relationship?

    Why was I choosing these people?

    I had to start moving and swimming in the river of misery instead of just staying put in the same spot of the river of misery.

    I had to be intentional with dating. I had to consciously vet out people who weren’t in alignment with what I wanted and who I wanted to be with no matter what. I had to stop settling for less then I deserved. I had to stop making excuses for people. I had to put myself out there and be vulnerable. I had to make an effort to go on dates again and get to know someone. I had to open up to people. I had to walk the walk and talk the talk.

    At first moving in the river of misery was hard. I had admit things to myself that I didn’t want to because I was ashamed of myself, I was embarrassed about my situation, I felt disappointed in myself for making mistakes and being in this situation longer than I wanted to.

    And it’s okay to feel this way, we are only human after all. Always be kind to yourself. Always do things out of love to yourself. Even though I wasn’t in my ideal situation I was and am still loveable and so are you whatever scenario you are in. Lead with love not hate.

    I had to swim through those hard emotions. At times moving in the river meant I would go backwards and fall into old habits and ways of thinking. But that’s okay, you catch yourself or make a mistake and keep moving forward. Sometimes you drift backwards a bit and then make up for it and move even more towards the land.

    The hardest part of the river of misery

    One thing is for sure the hardest part is just getting started, once I got started doing the work it got easier. An analogy of this is that it’s hard to go on your first date after you haven’t been on one in a long time. Once you’ve got on that first date, going on more dates doesn’t seem as hard as that first date.

    Another example is that it’s hard to get motivation to start going to the gym once you’ve had a long time off but it’s easier to add weights to your fitness routine or run a longer distance once you are already exercising.

    A hard truth about the river of misery

    Back to the river of misery in this scenario, I’m going to drop a truth bomb.
Do we stay stuck in the river of misery well because we enjoy being in misery?

    Hear me out. If you have been miserable for a while, misery starts to get comfortable. After all you are used to being miserable to the point where it becomes a part of your identity. 

    Poor me, I’m miserable. I’m miserable all the time. Misery is who I am.

    When you’re in misery it gives your brain a reason as to why you are in misery. You can them blame all of the circumstances for causing your misery. Have you ever considered if you are a source of your misery? Have you ever tried to turn the focus from everything happening to you and turn it inward? What is happening inside you to keep the misery going on?

    Can I offer you a radical thought? What if you chose to step away from the identity of being miserable. You radically actually chose to not be miserable. You choose to stop making excuses and blaming external factors and turn inwards. Take responsibility for your happiness, you aren’t stuck. Get out of the river of misery by swimming!

    Getting out of the river will feel uncomfortable but it will be worth it.

    Your brain and the river of misery

    Remember, the brain likes to be efficient. It likes routines. It likes easy. So when you break routine, when you challenge ways of thinking your brain doesn’t like it. Your brain will probably say to you “Hey you know what, you don’t have to be uncomfortable if you just stay stuck. Stop wanting more or different. Let’s continue with this current way of thinking, after all you have thought like this for ages and let’s stay comfortable doing nothing different.”

    Moreover your brain has confirmation bias, it wants to prove itself right. So if you keep on believing your thoughts keeping you stuck, your brain will continue to find evidence of your limiting beliefs and as a result you stay stuck.

    Let’s add in the fact as mentioned earlier that your brain is trying to protect you from danger too and guess what? Doing new things, having new thoughts, new actions is perceived as dangerous to your primitive mind. The cave man mind. The cave man mind was always on alert, there was always threats around without modern technology and evolution!

    You have to understand that if you want change, it means doing something different. Whatever you are doing right now is keeping you in the river of misery.

    There is no circumstance which means you can’t get out of the river of misery, as I always tell me clients – you can always do something. If you can’t change whatever is happening, you CAN change your mind.

    It means changing your thoughts intentionally. It means taking action. It means hard work. It means getting out of your comfort zone. Trust in yourself, you can do hard things. Do this for future you. Do it for you!

    If you’re in a river of misery, you can get out of there. I promise you, you can.

    Do the hard work and you get get out of there.

    Struggling in the river of misery? Need Help?

    If you’re struggling let’s chat, I’d love to connect with you this is what coaches do. A life coach helps you cross the river. A life coach shows you how you are stuck in a pond of misery. A life coach helps you master your thoughts to get across the river easier. A life coach will throw in the emergency buoy and help you.

    I am a life coach and I can help you. I have helped many people from the river of misery to land. Now? They thrive and conquer anything including rivers of misery.

    The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 05: River of Misery​ close

    Whatever you do, just keep swimming! You’ve got this.

    I’ll see you in the river of misery and I’ll see you on the land!

    Chat to you next Tuesday for the next episode of The Grow Through it Podcast with Phi Dang.

    Thanks for listening, speak soon.

    Love and Positivity.

    [Episode 05 – River of Misery: Ends]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

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  • 04: Mental Fitness – Take your Brain to the Gym

    Episode Summary of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 04: Mental Fitness - Take your Brain to the Gym

    You go the gym to work on your body and get fit. Why wouldn’t you take your brain to the gym? This episode is all about your mental health and fitness. Learn how to work out your brain. A powerful exploration of your mindset.

    What you'll learn from this episode

    (01:32): How coaching is like going to to the gym for your brain
    (02:56): Discomfort is the currency of your success
    (06:14): Why we focus on physical health and not mental health
    (06:52): How to workout your brain
    (07:57): Highlight – Neuroplasticity 

    Key Quotes from this Episode

    Featured Resources on the episode

    Show Transcript of The Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 04: Mental Fitness - Take your Brain to the Gym

    You are listening to episode 4: Mental Fitness – Take your Brain to the Gym.

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 04: Mental Fitness – Take your Brain to the Gym: Begins]

    Hello beautiful souls you’re listening to Episode #4 of the Growth Through It Podcast. This episode is all about mental fitness and how you can take your brain to the gym. I will share with you a practical 4 step mental fitness workout you can implement in your daily life.

    Before I do, I wanted to give a huge shout out to one of my beautiful clients Fiona who inspired today’s episode.

    Fiona is a huge gym goer. We had a big breakthrough session on Wednesday night and an analogy I had, really hit home for her which I would love to share with you.

    Getting life coaching is the equivalent of taking your brain to the gym.

    It’s not the only way but it’s one of the greatest ways you can take your brain to the gym. I’ll dive into this a little later into the podcast but this episode is all about.

    It is in the same way that a professional athlete has a coach to improve their performance. It doesn’t matter how good they get, they will always have a coach.

    So apply that to your own circumstances, do you have a coach for your life? Athletes need the experience, support, outside perspective and insight of their coach. This is just as true for everyone. Life is hard, it’s not a walk in the park.

    In fact some of the most well known, successful personalities in this world vouch for coaching.

    There is such power in getting life coaching. You have someone there holding space for you where you can talk about anything and everything in your life (with no need to feel bad, that’s the purpose). As a life coach I work with my clients to discover what is holding them back and support them in taking action over overcome their perceived limits so they can conquer anything.

    Bringing it back to the analogy that getting life coaching is the equivalent of taking your brain to the gym, In the same vein of the analogy, discomfort is a part of your growth and success. Really discomfort is the currency of success.

    You know when you have a big session at the gym, you feel absolutely sore and exhausted but in a good way? That’s when you know you’ve had a good proper workout. Then DOMS kicks in and your arms and legs are sore for days after, maybe you’re even wobbling and it hurts to laugh because you’re that sore but you tolerate it because the pain means that your body is changing.

    Well the equivalent of this is feeling uncomfortable and emotional during and after a life coaching session. You won’t always be emotional but you’ll most certainly be uncomfortable. It’s through discomfort we grow. Discomfort is the price we pay to grow, as they said ‘no pain, no gain.’ Will it always be this way? No. But reflect on your own life, is not when you go through the hardest, the heaviest, the most painful of times that the most growth occurs? Getting out of your comfort zone is where the most growth occurs.

    Moving further into this analogy, I find when I speak to clients and they start crying or feeling down they start to apologise. and I’m like what for!?! You’re having a huge brain workout. Just like the gym, yes it’s uncomfortable, yes you might be in pain but you’re growing! 

    Can you tolerate being uncomfortable and emotional because you are are transforming? Because you are shedding old ways of thinking and patterns? Because you are having new thoughts and creating new neural pathways in your brain? Not only that discomfort, is a part of being human – the full spectrum of it.

    As humans, we are generally willing to feel discomfort because of something. For a purpose. We don’t like going through difficult emotions unless it’s for a purpose, otherwise you’ll see it as just meaningless discomfort for you. 

    Always remember your why, your purpose. Just like gym, keeping your “why” front and center and always available to you, will help you find your strength on those dark days when motivation’s light is nowhere to be found. Take note of this affirmation: I can do hard things (it’s true because you can).

    I mean this doesn’t even just apply to coaching, it applies to your personal development. When you are working on your mindset. When you are working on your self love. When you are working on energetic principles. When you are hitting your goals, your purpose. 

    You have to be willing to feel the discomfort of growth and risk in order to achieve what you want. The more uncomfortable you are willing to be, the closer your life will align to what you want it to be. There’s a whole lot of amazing waiting for you outside of your comfort zone.

    Speaking of fitness, we have such a huge emphasis on getting fit – especially in Australia we have a huge health and fitness scene here. In fact Australians spend an average of almost $1,000 – $900 on average per year at the gym according to Canstar Blue. Why is that we are prepared to spend that much at the gym but bulk at the thought of investing in ourselves mentally whether that’s through life coaching or therapy?

    Why is it that we focus on the physical but forget about the mental? My belief is that when you work out because you can physically see it, that motivates you to keep going. Developing yourself mentally, you can’t physically see it so it can be harder to keep being inspired and motivated but I want you to know, just because you can’t see it – doesn’t mean it’s not happening. You are growing every time you work on yourself so keep going!

    It’s important to be physically fit but equally it is so important to be mentally fit too. So I want to dive in and share some practical ways that you can boost your mental fitness. So let’s dive into this 4 stage mental fitness work out example.

    Stage 1: The Warm Up

    So at the gym you would do stretches or a few exercises to kickstart your workout like push ups? You can also do the same to take a few minutes to get your mind warmed up.

    It could be taking a minute to think about what you are grateful for (which has tremendous positive benefits on your wellbeing) or taking a minute to be mindful, to be fully present in the moment. 

    Taking in a deep breath, observing what is going on around you. What can you see? What can you hear? What can you feel?

    Stage 2: The Work Out

    Did you know your brain has neuroplasticity? Dr Celeste Campbell refers to neuroplasticity as the physiological changes in the brain that happen as the result of our interactions with our environment. From the time the brain begins to develop in utero until the day we die, the connections among the cells in our brains reorganize in response to our changing needs. This dynamic process allows us to learn from and adapt to different experiences.

    How incredible is that? From the moment we are born to the moment we die, this plasticity allows your mind to adapt and change, even as you grow older. As you learn new things, you can create and strengthen neural pathways and networks. 

    This helps make your brain stronger, but it can also help make it more flexible and adaptable to change. Remember this when you think you can’t change your thoughts, you most definitely can, even as you get older.

    Let’s dive into ways you can exercise your mind.



    My personal favourite and recommendation for clients is journaling. No excuses it can be simply done on a piece of paper or any writing book you deem your journal. Journaling is a great way to check in with yourself and to get to know yourself better.

    It helps you focus on yourself and actually reduce your stress as you get everything our of your head and onto paper. When you start it could be as simple as reflecting on what you did, how you felt and what thoughts came up for you each day.

    With clients I love to prepare personalised prompts based on what they are working through. If you aren’t working with a coach you can journal to work through something that you’re going through. Perhaps its what scares you and holds you back or is there a relationship in your life you’d like to work on?

    Learn something new

    In addition to journaling I’m going to run you through additional ways to exercise your mind.

    The obvious one that comes to mind is to learn something new.

    Learning something new keeps your mind on its toe because it’s going through obstacles and challenges it hasn’t experienced before.

    In one study done on older adults in 2013, researchers had a group learn a variety of new skills such as digital photography and quilting. They then did memory tests and compared this group to another group engaged in fun non social activities but weren’t mentally challenging like listening to the radio.

    The researchers found that only those in the experiment who had learned a new skill experienced improvement on the memory tests.

    They also discovered that these memory improvements were still present when tested again a year later.

    Not only that research shows any kind of a new skill can create more dopamine neurotransmitters to be released in parts of the brain that control our reward and learning responses. A natural high ensues as nature intended. You just have to find something unique that stimulates your mind in new and exciting ways.

    Do things differently - shake up your routine

    Use your non dominant hand to switch it up. So for example if you are right handed, try using your left hand to brush your teeth, or use it to eat your meals or write. It will be difficult but that is the point.

    The reason that is, is because most of us live lour life as a series of fixed routines which makes sense as its less stressful – we have less choices to make, we perform complex tasks like driving a car with little mental effort. 

    Routines are run by our subconscious mind and require little energy. Once in a while you want to shake that up just like you do with exercise. If you keep doing the same exercises over and over again eventually they become less effective as your body has adapted.

    In addition to switching your hand to break your routine you can do it as simply as taking a different route to get to work or can you try do mundane safe household chores with your eyes closed. Closing your eyes adds difficulty to folding your clothes or washing your hair. Maybe it’s doing something upside down or backwards instead for a change!

    With clients I love to prepare personalised prompts based on what they are working through. If you aren’t working with a coach you can journal to work through something that you’re going through. Perhaps its what scares you and holds you back or is there a relationship in your life you’d like to work on?

    Food related ways to work out your brain

    The next few ideas are to do with food because well I love food!

    Do some cooking! Particularly new recipes you haven’t done before. Cooking uses all your senses — smell, touch, sight, sound and taste — which involve different parts of the brain to keep them active. 

    When you throw in eating unfamiliar foods that truly drives your mind into overdrive exercising to figure out what it thinks of it and gives you a new experience in life. New experiences in life can be hard to come by as we get older as we get more accustomed to wanting comfort in life. 

    Remember when you were a kid? Your mind used to get so blown by the simplest things. Try looking at the world from the eyes of a child – have curiosity, wonder and awe of what is going on around you.

    Think of activities that engage your physical and emotional senses like “Neurobic” exercises that are like cross-training for your brain.

    Challenge your taste buds. When eating, try to identify individual ingredients in your meal, including subtle herbs and spices. Sounds very Masterchefy right?


    Lastly one of the most simple in theory to do but hardest in practice. Meditation.

    Simply put meditation is being in the present moment. The majority of us like to close our eyes, focus on our breathing and let the mind do its thing. To let thoughts pass like clouds, they’re going to come and go and there’s nothing you can do to stop them.

    When you catch yourself thinking about something return your focus to your breath.

    That’s it!

    There’s all sorts of ways to meditate from staring at a candle to listening to a guided medtiation. There are so many apps out there that can help you. Some of personal favourite apps are insight timer, calm and one giant mind.

    Research continually comes out in regards to the benefits of meditation and how it actually changes your brain.

    One of the most interesting studies in the last few years was done at Yale University. Researchers found that mindfulness meditation decreases activity in the default mode network (DMN). 

    This network in your brain is responsible for monkey mind which is when your mind is wandering. This network is on when you’re not thinking about anything in particular, when your mind is bouncing from thought to thought.

    Monkey mind is typically associated with being less happy as you are ruminating or worrying about about the past and future.

    Studies showed that meditation had quieting effecting on the DMN.

    It’s impossible to completely eradicate monkey mind but if you’re a regular meditator you’ll find it’s easier to snap out of it.

    Stage 3: The Cool Down

    Cooling down after a workout is important as it allows your body temperature, bloody pressure and heart rate to return to their normal levels. Stretching helps relieve cramps and stiffness. When we are working on our mindset, it can get heavy depending how deeply we delve into our personal development.

    So our equivalent for cooling down mentally is to change your state. To bring yourself out of the mental zone and relieve any mental intensity.

    To do this, for example if you’re currently sitting down, stand up and I want you to physically shake as if you are dancing. Or it can be as simple as changing your posture or smiling. Perhaps you even want to change your environment and go to a different room – as long as you change your current state!

    Stage 4: Rest

    Just like athletes, your mind also needs a rest. Self care is so important. Resting could be in the form of naps or taking things off your plate when you are overloaded with things to do. The best rest is of course sleep at least 7 hours for adults — if you ever want to know why do yourself a favour and read “Why do we Sleep” by Matthew Walker.

    So our equivalent for cooling down mentally is to change your state. To bring yourself out of the mental zone and relieve any mental intensity.

    To do this, for example if you’re currently sitting down, stand up and I want you to physically shake as if you are dancing. Or it can be as simple as changing your posture or smiling. Perhaps you even want to change your environment and go to a different room – as long as you change your current state!

    Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang, 04: Mental Fitness - Take your Brain to the Gym Episode Close

    Having your own mental fitness routine takes time to establish. Like exercises, be open to trying new ways and finding what works best for you. 

    Thank you for joining me on this episode on mental fitness and taking your brain to the gym. 

    I’ll chat to you next Tuesday and if you’re looking for a coach and to take your brain to the gym check out the show notes. I currently have 1:1 coaching spots open and available – I would love to work with you.

    [Episode 04: Mental Fitness – Take your Brain to the Gym: Ends]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

    Click here to read more

  • 03: Beyond the Law of Attraction, The 12 Universal Laws

    Episode Summary of The Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang, 03: Beyond The Law of Attraction, The 12 Universal Laws

    In this episode I explain the 12 universal laws of the Universe. I cover how they impact your life and how you can use them in your daily life through practical examples. It goes beyond the Law of Attraction and covers ones you may have never heard of such as the Law of Correspondence and the Law of Perpetual Transmutation of Energy.

    What you'll learn from this episode

    (01:40) – What are the Universal Laws?
    (03:15) – The Universal Laws

    Key Quotes from this Episode

    Featured Resources on the episode

    Show Transcript

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 03 – Beyond the Law of Attraction, The 12 Universal Laws: Begins]

    Hi Beautiful Souls, it’s great to connect with you again! I’m sure most of you listening have heard of the Law of Attraction? Distilled simply the law of attraction is that like attracts like. It is often brought up in relation to your thoughts. Positive thoughts attract positive outcomes, negative thoughts attract negative outcomes. 

    Whilst the Law of Attraction is well known due to its popularity in the media through books and documentaries such as The Secret, in this episode we go beyond the Law of Attraction and cover all 12 Laws of the Universe. Yes there are 12 laws of the universe! The Law of attraction co exists and works with these 11 other Laws.

    So what are the universal laws? You can think of them as the law of nature, how life is ‘set up’ in a way. They are a roadmap on how to live your best life. The laws work in our favour, we work with them – they are not here as punishments and they are not here to stop us from living our best life. We co create with them. You co create with the universe your reality. Note it can be said the universe is interchangeable with terms such as the source, creation, God, divinity and so forth.

    This is a quote from the ancient text The Kybalion, where the origins of the 12 universal laws stem from amongst other ancient teachings across time.

    For the most part of the laws, the basic principle revolves around energy because everything in the universe is energy.

    To many it sounds like ‘woo’ – vibrations, frequency however I promise you I will explain everything in clear and practical terms so you can truly understand the 12 universal laws.

    As you gain a fuller understanding of the laws, you will see how they are all related, they overlap each other and govern the world we live in.

    Another perspective you can have on the universal laws is that we can call it the game of life or we can call it the Matrix! Just like the movie. You can think of it as that we are living in the Matrix! And just like the Matrix, there are rules in how you play the game. Your purpose in this game is to be your best self, to grow and evolve.

    So let’s dive into the 12 Universal Laws.

    Law of the Universe 01: The Law of Divine Oneness

    The first and most foundational law of the universe is the Law of Divine Oneness, which highlights how everything is interconnected. For us humans it goes beyond perception of physicality (what we can see and touch), into our senses and extends to every thought, action, belief you have too. Think of it as a ripple effect.

    This is further extended in the notion we all come from one source origin which I alluded to earlier at the beginning of the podcast by saying ‘The Universe’ is an interchangeable term, it is also known as ‘the source’, divinity, consciousness, God etc.

    As a result, the law of divine oneness can be distilled as “what you wish upon others, you wish upon yourself”

    When you hurt someone, you are hurting yourself.

    You know how when you go to a yoga class they always say namaste? Namaste encapsulates this concept.

    Originally a Sanskrit word (the ancient language in Hinduism) namaste is composed of two parts—“namas” which means “bend to,” “bow to” or “honour to,” and “te” means “to you.” So Namaste means “I bow to you.” This phrase when said is often accompanied by the gesture of joining two palms together, placing them at the heart level and bowing one’s head while saying namaste.

    The spiritual meaning of namaste conveys that “the divine in me respectfully recognizes the divine in you.” Namaste invokes the feeling of spiritual oneness of heart and mind, with the person one is greeting.

    So in practical terms how does the law of Divine Oneness apply to your daily life?

    It really speaks to the power of working together in cooperation with others and to be of help and services to others. I have an analogy to showcase this for you.

    When you have a single brick, what can you do with it? Not much right, perhaps as a door stop or a very heavy paper weight.

    However if you have over a million bricks, you have so many possibilities. These bricks can be used to build a house, a hospital, a school, a business, a fireplace, driveways, a chimney and so forth. In order for this to happen all the bricks work together to create something incredible, something a single brick could never do. 

    Each individual brick is useful and important in itself but it becomes even more important and useful together with all the other bricks. Individual bricks become the support for another brick.

    So in your life, are you working alone and for your own interest? Can you help others to become greater than you are alone? Are you truly unlocking your full potential alone? Imagine you could share your skills and knowledge with others, what incredible things would happen, not only for yourself but everyone around you and connected with you?

    Law of the Universe 02: The Law of Vibration

    Vibrations used to be one of those things that was relegated to new age thinking, hippies, ‘woo’ along with healing crystals and so forth.

    Today, quantum physics, science backs the fact that vibrations exist. In fact they exist everywhere and in everything, in the chair you may be sitting on, on the ground you are running on, in your forks and plates.

    Everything in the universe is energy and in turn everything has a vibration.

    Even Einstein himself said this:

    What Einstein says has heavy weight, after all he is the physicist who developed the theory of relativity, one of the two pillars of modern physics.

    How this applies to you in your daily life is realizing every thought, feeling, emotion has a vibrational frequency.

    Have you heard of these sayings? They embody the Law of Vibration.

    Speaking of frequency a real life example of this is your emotions. Emotions are energy in motion. Each emotion has a different frequency for example love is a high frequency whereas shame is a low frequency.

    How do you raise your vibrational frequency? 

    There are various ways to do this in your life including being conscious of your thoughts, meditating, practicing kindness and gratitude, swim in the ocean, do not saying yes to something unless you really want to, dance, decluttering, earthing (when you walk barefoot on the grass, check out my blog on my website phidang.com where I discuss this in an article 7 Unexpected Life-Changing Things I learnt on a Silent Retreat in Bali. I’ll drop the link in the show notes.

    Law of the Universe 03: The Law of Correspondence

    This law of correspondence is all about patterns that repeat throughout the universe, and on a personal level, our reality is a mirror of what’s happening inside us at that moment.

    Therefore everything is a reflection of your internal state. If you want to change what is happening in your external reality, you have to change inside first. That’s why people love to say ‘change from the inside out’ or think of it in these terms “As above, so below. As within, so without.”

    So if your current external reality is sad, chaotic or unfulfilling it is a direct result of what is happening inside you according to the law of correspondence. If you have low self-esteem, feel badly about yourself or feel hate, anger and loathing all the time then your outer world will be a place of chaos, just to show you what you are projecting.

    Now if you’re currently feeling under attacked or offended, it’s okay. Let me explain this through the concept of law and effect which is regularly used in coaching in the field of neuro linguistic programming (NLP) which is a tool I used with my clients. 

    NLP uses perceptual, behavioral, and communication techniques to make it easier for people to change their thoughts and actions.

    The concept of cause and effect is this. We ask are you on the cause side of the equation or the effect side. If you are on the cause side you know that everything is happening in your life because of a conscious or subconscious decision you have made. It is a view of personal power whereas if you are on the effect side, life is happening to you and you are the victim, you have no control.

    Now what that means in your everyday life is that if you are on the cause side and responsible for your life guess what? You have power you can change your life whereas if you are on the effect side because it is external things causing everything you have no control or ability to change your life.

    See the difference? If you’re interested in learning more about cause and effect I have it on my free ‘mini trainings’ highlight on my Instagram @thephidang (i’ll drop my handle in the show notes if we haven’t already connected).

    Therefore the law of correspondence puts you in the drivers seat of your life, you are not a victim of your life.

    Remember: Life is happening for you, not to you. How can you grow through your experiences? What do they teach you?

    One of my favourite quotes is from Wayne Dyer is:

    Law of the Universe 04: The Law of Attraction

    One of the most known and talked about laws of the universe as I mentioned at the beginning of this episode.

    Simply distilled the law of attraction explains why certain things, people, events happen in our lives.

    Like attracts like. 

    There is a common misconception that this is a scary bad thing where you are punished for your bad thoughts – think of it more as a mirror.

    Let’s bring this example into real life.

    I want you to stand in front of mirror and I want you to think about what you see, what you think and what you feel when you see yourself in the mirror.

    Whatever it is, the very nature of a mirror is that it reflects back to us what we see just like the law of attraction. Think of the mirror as an amplifier of the energy that you are already embodying.

    When you look back at your reflection, you are taking in more of the same energy, whether this be positive or negative or whatever it may be. If you see flaws, you’ll continue to focus and fixate them which makes it worse OR you can choose to use that focus and energy into improving yourself as an as an example.

    How the law of attraction plays out in your real life is to be aware and conscious of the thoughts you are having. Your thoughts have an energy and are a self fulfilling prophecy. Further to that, the law of attraction is the main tenet in manifestation.

    Manifestation is bringing something tangible into your life through attraction and belief, i.e. if you think it, it will come. However, there is more to manifestation than willpower and positive thinking, it involves focus and inspired action too.

    If you want to learn more about manifestation, I have a free guide available worth $77 called the A-Z of manifestation. It’s yours free, just jump onto my website phidang.com and sign up for my weekly newsletter

    When you sign up you’ll immediately receive a download link for the guide. It teaches you basic concepts of manifestation and what you need to know to get started or further advance your current ways. I find i always get spammed with irrelevant and annoying newsletters so I promise i won’t do the same to you – it will be exclusive offers as well as tips and tricks on mindset, self love, energy and purpose not available in this podcast, my website or my instagram.

    Law of the Universe 05: The Law of Inspired Action

    The Law of Attraction was all about aligning your energy – your vibration, your frequency created from your thoughts. This is the first step in creating all that you desire, manifesting.

    The second step is the law of inspired action – to take action. Nothing changes, if nothing changes. You can’t sit back want, wish and hope that what you want will come to you. You have to take inspired action for it to happen.

    That old saying ‘Actions speak louder than words’ has never been truer. Are your actions supporting your desires? Are your actions supporting your dreams and supporting the life you are working so tirelessly to create for yourself? Reflect and assess.

    For example if you are single and wanting a relationship, to find a partner – are you going out and meeting people. Are you going on dates? That you’re not just at home watching Netflix and eating ice cream hoping that your perfect partner will waltz through the door?

    The subtle secret here is ‘inspired’ – it can’t feel forced like a ‘hustle’ when you are taking inspired action it feels good (it might not be easy) but it feels good e.g. in most cases you are driven by your purpose, your why

    Where most of us fall down or mistakes on this one is not taking any action at all. Action is better than no action. When you take action you get a result it either works out the way you want or you learn. A win, a win in my eyes.

    Most of us know what we want and can figure out how to get what we want but we fail to take action because we are either skeptical, feel unworthy, and not capable of achieving our dreams. At times we may even not take action because we don’t want to get out of our comfort zone. 

    Remember you don’t really grow from the comfort zone. For example you could just lie in bed all day, relax, watch TV everyday or you can choose to get up, go to the gym, work on yourself etc. It’s much easier to stay in bed but nothing really comes of that.

    Remember even a small action still counts as action. It doesn’t have to be a grand action. In fact it’s better to have consistent inspired action towards your goals and dreams as opposed to big action once in every while. Consistency moves you closer to the needle. 

    Law of the Universe 06: The Law of Perpetual Transmutation of Energy

    This law is a mouthful but such a great one as it truly affirms how much personal power you have.

    As I mentioned at the beginning of the podcast, all the universal laws relate to each other and overlap in ways. The law of perpetual transmutation of energy ties in threads from the previous universal laws we spoke about – the law of vibration, the law of correspondence, the law of attraction.

    Particularly, the law of vibration: Nothing is static and everything is always transforming because everything is in constant motion and energy. You are energy therefore you have the power to change any condition in your life.

    Therefore you can transmutate everything – negative to positive energy, nothing to something… hence The law of perpetual transmutation of energy.

    Change is the only constant in life.

    Applying this to your life, producing a higher vibration consumes and transforms lower ones. Positive energy is more powerful than negative energy.  So you don’t have to worry about other people’s energy, stay focused and in your energy.

    Further to this an example is the transformation of energetic thoughts into physical reality.

    1. Your reality are circumstances, they are neutral

    2. Your thoughts create create emotion which you feel in your head and throughout your body.

    3. How you feel dictates what action or inaction you take which then leads to a result.

    Another example is the transmutation of your emotions.

    For example, anxious energy can be turned into excitement. Anger can become passion, sexual energy can become creativity.

    Law of the Universe 07: The Law of Cause and Effect

    Note the law of cause and effect is different to cause and effect which I mentioned earlier when explaining the law of correspondence. This is the universal law of cause and effect, not the NLP concept although they do interplay and have the same foundations.

    You can think of the law of cause and effect as the principle of karma – what you put out, you will get back.

    How this comes to life – ask yourself about the intention of your actions.

    Are you truly doing something out of love? Are you truly doing something for nothing in return because you want to give? Are you truly being genuine?

    If you are motivated by hate and greed, you plant the seed of suffering; when you are motivated by love and generosity then you create abundance and happiness.

    I want to take this analogy further into reality to clearly explain it to you.

    If you plant an apple seed, that seed will become a tree that has apples. Even if you really want coconuts, nothing you can do will make the apple tree grow coconuts. The only way to grow coconuts is to plant a coconut seed.

    Law of the Universe 08: The Law of Compensation

    Simply said, ”You reap what you sow.”

    Trust that you will be compensated for what you do as long as you are open to receiving in the many ways the universe can deliver.

    E.g. when I work with clients and they would like to manifest money – whilst it can happen more often than not it won’t just be a huge lump sum in your bank account. Perhaps it will come in the form of a discount off something you buy, perhaps it will come in a reimbursement or bonus you were not expecting.

    Whilst money comes to mind, this does not just apply to money.

    Spread more love, and more love will be returned to you.

    Spread more happiness, and happiness will be returned to you.

    Spread more hate, and more hate will be returned to you.

    Spread more wealth, and more wealth will be returned to you.

    Be encouraged that with every act, thought, and emotion, you are perpetuating the law of compensation.

    Law of the Universe 09: The Law of Relativity

    Simply distilled, everything is a matter of perception.

    Inherently a fundamental principle to understanding this and a core aspect of my coaching is there is nothing ‘good’ or ‘bad’. Everything is circumstances and neutral. As humans we create the meaning and labelling of ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ This is extended into something that is deemed ‘small’ vs ‘big’ and so forth.

    For example, if you are feeling ungrateful for your living situation, it could be because you are comparing to someone else’s life. Maybe you don’t like where you live, or your relationship isn’t as great as someone else’s, maybe someone else has so much more money than you and so forth.

    Instead, we’d be better off appreciating what we have without needing to compare it to something else and just remember in your everyday life, you are creating the meaning of everything. You choose whether it’s positive or negative.

    Law of the Universe 10: The Law of Polarity

    Everything in life has an opposite. There is duality in everything.

    Light and Dark.
    Hot and Cold.
    Happy and Sad.
    The North and the South Pole
    On a battery positive and negative terminals.
    Feminine and Masculine.

    Newton’s Third Law of motion sums it up nicely, “For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.” It means that energetic forces come in pairs.

    How this plays out in everyday life is well

    1) The polarities give us perspective and help us appreciate what we have. E.g. you can’t have happiness without sadness, if you were happy all the time, you wouldn’t know how special it is to be happy all the time or if you had Summer all year round you would take it for granted and miss Winter.

    2) You can use the law of polarity to draw other energies to you – like a magnet.

    A practical example for you.

    If you’re stuck in the negative state of mind, ask yourself: “What am I learning from this negative situation and what might be the positives out of this situation I can take?”

    For example: A difficult situation and thoughts to move away from might be:

    “I made a mistake and I don’t think I can bounce back from this.

    The positive polarity would be:

    “I made a mistake and that is how I learn. Next time this happens, I will know what to do”

    From that positive polarity you are more likely to feel inner peace and acceptance which in turn compels you to continue taking action to improve instead of staying in the negative polarity.

    In the negative polarity you feel sad and disappointed in yourself, so the action you take is you keep beating yourself up about it and take no action at all. This ties in closely with the law of inspired action which I spoke about earlier. 

    Law of the Universe 11: The Law of Rhythm

    The law of rhythm is how nothing every stays the same, the universe is continually flowing. Think of it like a pendulum that swings from left to right always continually, perpetually.

    Rhythm, Cycles are a natural part of the universe. Look at the ocean tides, weather seasons, moon phases, mating and migration patterns of animals. For women, specifically you can think about your time of the month and menstrual cycle.

    As a whole think of it like a year in your life. It won’t be 365 days of summer and it won’t be 365 days of winter. Summer is when we are active, we are doing things whereas Winter gives us a chance to have a break, to rest, to recuperate.

    The practicality of this to your life is practice patience, go with the flow of your internal seasons.

    Law of the Universe 12: The Law of Gender

    We see this unfold as masculine and feminine energies. The masculine as ‘yang’ and the feminine as ‘ying’. Often people think of gender as opposing forces but truly they are complementary. We all hold masculine and feminine energies.

    Masculine energy is all about taking action, fixing things, direction, purpose, logic, independence and freedom.

    Feminine is the counter balance, it’s all about flow, creativity, inspiration, feeling, intuition and connection.

    Distilled down life is a dance of patience (feminine energy) and persistence (masculine energy).

    Where I regularly see the law of gender play out with clients in their everyday life is in relationships.

    Humans need polarity for attraction. Think of it like a magnet. Intimate connection and sexual attraction will thrive in a relationship where there is a distinct polarity between the energies of the people involved.

    The more opposed the individual energies are, the stronger the attraction will be in the relationship.

    Most conflicts arise when both partners demonstrate dominant masculine energies in a relationship…This creates a constant power struggle between the two partners.

    Both want to be in charge, both want to be the decision-makers, and both want to have things their way!

    I see this in women who are very career oriented and successful. The masculine energy helps them succeed through hustling and control in their work but when it comes to their personal life, masculine energy men can find them controlling or competitive whereas feminine energy men let them do their own thing as they are comfortable with their partner leading, being the bread winner concept etc.

    The most stagnant relationship comes from two feminine dominant energies partners where neither takes charge or makes decisions. It is when relationships gets stale – it feels boring, it feels lifeless it feels like it’s lacking fun, adventure and excitement. 

    Remember there are masculine energy women and feminine energy men.

    The Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang, 03: Beyond The Law of Attraction, The 12 Universal Laws, Episode Close

    There are lot of universal laws to be mindful of. Understanding the universal laws that govern life can give us clarity and perspective on our lives. How you can conceptualise it and integrate it into your life is unique. Everyone is different. 

    Thank you for listening to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang. I hope you’ve learnt something new and I’ll speak to you next week. Catch you soon.

    [Episode 03 – Beyond the Law of Attraction, The 12 Universal Laws: Ends]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

    Click here to read more

  • 02: Life is Like a Book and You are The Author

    Episode 02: Life is Like a Book and You are the Author Summary

    This episode explains how your life is like a book and you are the author. There are prompts and considerations which will shift how you think about your life and your personal power. This episode also includes journal prompts for your reflection.

    What you'll learn from this episode​

    (05:50) Life is Like a Book and You are The Author Set Up
    (08:49) Considerations and Musings about Life is Like a Book and You are The Author Set Up
    (09:20) An analogy you’ve probably never heard of when it comes to Life is Like a Book
    (15:30) Journaling prompts for your reflection

    Key Quotes from this episode

    Featured Resources on the episode

    Life is Like a Book and You are the Author Show​ Transcript

    You are listening to episode 2: Life is like a Book and You are the Author

    [Introduction to the Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang plays – Background Music: upbeat, confident, rising beat]:

    Don’t just go through life, grow through it. Don’t just go through life, grow through it.

    Hi and Welcome to the Grow Through It Podcast with Phi Dang.

    My name is Phi and I am a Clarity and Confidence Life Coach known as the “The Positivity Queen.”

    My passion is to help you go from stuck and self critical to courageous and empowered so you can conquer anything.

    Join me, every Tuesday, as I discuss all things mindset, self love, energy and purpose.

    This podcast won’t just inspire and motivate you, it will also provide practical tips and strategies you can implement in your daily life.

    Ready to grow? Let’s grow!

    [Grow Through It Podcast With Phi Dang End of Intro]

    [Episode 02 – Life is like a Book and You are the Author: Begins]

    Hi Beautiful Soul, I’m glad you’re here! As you probably gathered from the title, today’s podcast is all about how life is like a book and you are the author.

    Books are so magical. There is something so incredible about them. We are transported to new worlds, they let our minds run wild with imagination and guess what, your life is like a book! You are the author of this book. So many things can be said about books, amongst my favourite quotes are:

    So why books and what inspired this episode

    So why books you ask? I’d love to jump into why I wanted to do an episode today about how life is like a book and you are the author.

    In early November, my amazing boyfriend surprised me with a weekend away to Stanwell Tops.

    Stanwell Tops is a beautiful coastal town in New South Wales, Australia halfway between Sydney and Wollongong with cliff views surrounded by thick bush, in fact the royal national park. In fact Stanwell Tops is an internationally famous area for hang-gliding and paragliding. It’s so incredible looking up into the blue sky and seeing so many people flying – how majestic, it truly takes your breath away.

    As it was my birthday, my boyfriend booked a very fancy restaurant in town. You know they boast using native ingredients, fresh local produce.

    We got there and we were waiting over 10 minutes just to get a drinks menu!

    So we bailed (such a thrill for a non adrenaline junkie like me) and went to this cute lovely Thai place – Raya Thai huge shout out.

    So we get there it’s beautiful fairy lights, warm vibrant atmosphere, groups of people catching up laughing, smiling, catching up, the smell of deep fried spring rolls then a song comes on.

    “And now, the end is near

    [Phi interrupts “Now I’m not the best singer, so I am not going to sing it for you but I will read out a few of the lyrics of the song]

    And so I face the final curtain

    My friends, I’ll say it clear.”

    If you don’t recognise the song, it’s “I Did it my way” by Frank Sinatra.

    When I heard this, I immediately got chills up my spine and tears started to roll down my face because that’s the song they played at my dads funeral.

    I started to have a breakdown in the middle of the restaurant.

    The timing seemed so eerie given that the day before I had just told my boyfriend that I was really missing my dad. This felt like a sign that he was trying to communicate with me. It is after all coming up to the 7th anniversary since my dad passed away in 2013.

    How this ties back into books is that english, literature, language and reading is dear to my heart because my dad was an English teacher before he fled Vietnam.

    My dad became a teacher because at the time there was a war in Vietnam and my grandpa did not want my dad to be enlisted and sent off to war. So my dad became an english teacher.

    So when you’re a teacher, a doctor, a person in a position of an important role they consider they don’t send you off to be enlisted and in the army.

    So my dad, he ended up working for the government here in Australia as when he fled the war his university qualifications weren’t accepted here at the time. I’m also glad he fled because that’s how I came to be in existence. 

    My dad met my mum on the boat to Australia in a twist of fate I guess you could say. He wanted to go to America, the United States but there was no room on the boat so he ended up on the boat to Australia which my mum was on. 

    A fun story there but really it was quite an ordeal for my parents who were boat people in a rickety boat and I’m sure one day I’ll share the story further one day.

    Growing up I read a lot. I vividly remember my dad reading me books such as beauty and the beast and spot (does everyone remember the iconic yellow puppy?)

    So there it is a combination of factors reminiscing about my dad and my love for books and reading. Further to that my clients know that when it comes to coaching I love analogies.

    I love analogies because they give you the lightbulb moments the aha as you just get it straight away.

    Life is like a Book and You are the Author

    So let’s jump into it.

    Life is like a book and you are the author.

    You are the author of your life. The duration of your book, we don’t know but it doesn’t matter whether its short or long, it’s more how good the book is, how impactful the book is.

    You are the main character. Throughout a book we see the main character change and grow. We root for main character. We root for characters that are real and human – they aren’t perfect and they aren’t happy all the time. Characters go through challenges, testing events and we love them all the more for it.

    The main character cannot control everything that happens to them but the main character does choose how to react to what happens to them. The main character doesn’t become great in the story by being a passive participant or us seeing the character through a powerless filter, the main character becomes great through intentional actions and thoughts.

    The main character interacts with a supporting cast, the people in your life. Characters in books are just like the people we meet for the first time.

    We get to know these characters as time goes on as we spend quality time with these characters. We learn more about them, we analyse them, we make judgements… and not every character introduced on the first page will be there in the last page.

    Characters come and go and the story will always go on. Just like life and the people in our lives whether that’s by choice or the circumstances of life. Friends, family, loved ones, relationships…

    Often in the story of life, there are villains or antagonists that make life difficult. That is natural and to be expected. How the main character deals with it speaks volumes and sometimes that villain or antagonist in the story is the main character too…

    Further to that whilst you are the main character of your book, other people are the main characters of their book. Sometimes you play a supporting role in someone else’s book. Sometimes you play a minor role in someone’s book. Never forget the impact of your character in other people’s books.

    The book of your life is a mixture of genres such as drama, romance, comedy, tragedy. The overarching genre that will always exist alongside everything else is suspense. We don’t know what will happen in life , we just keep turning the page.

    Your life truly is like a book not a movie where the ending stays the same. Your book is in progress and you choose how your story is shared, you can add plot twists, you can edit and change the script.

    Speaking of editing, when you have rose-tinted glasses on that is the same as any editor who cuts out certain parts of the story to make the book better.

    Life is like a Book and You are the Author: Musings and Considerations

    Running with this analogy that life is a book and you are the author some considerations and musings for you:

    • Every morning is a blank page for you to put your pen on. Some chapters will be happy, some will be sad, some will be exciting, some will be boring but if you never turn the page you will never know what the next chapter holds. Keep going and keep moving forward. How wonderful is it that some of the best days of our lives haven’t even happened yet?


    • On every page of your book, no matter what is going on in the story, no matter what events are unfolding or what the words are describing, behind the words there is paper.


    • We never speak about the paper of books. The paper hardly draws any attention from us, we don’t really notice the paper or appreciate it but the paper we write our words on is so important. Without it, the words do not exist. They can’t exist. Our words need a canvas (and if you’re technologically savvy translate paper to your computer screen page).


    • Whilst the story of your life exists – you know the events that happen in your life, who you are, your wins, your losses, your memories, your achievements at the end of the day you are just. You are you.


    • You are like the paper behind the words of life. You are life itself, you are consciousness itself in which the story of your life plays out.

      Paper holds words. The paper itself is never impacted by the story that is on the book. The paper just is. It’s there to allow the words to be there, the words on the paper are embraced unconditionally. They are just there.


    • When a book comes to its end, the paper does not fear the end. It doesn’t even fear the end at the beginning of the book, half way through, three quarters through.

      The book just continues to exist through its pages even when the main character dies. The story of the main character lives on through another cast of characters. Your legacy. Death is allowed in the story on the paper. The story continues on, beyond the cycle of life and death of the cast of characters.


    • The book in its existence is here, in its very moment. Everything just is. Everything is acceptance. It just is. Just like your life, living in the present moment. You aren’t think about the past, or the future you are just here, living! This is you! How wonderful. How peaceful.

    • So what story is your book telling? If you are always writing, thinking and talking about negative stories that’s what your story will predominantly be about. As they say energy flows where focus goes.


    • Are there events or patterns that keep happening in your story? Bring your awareness to this, what is it revealing about yourself? As the saying goes insanity is doing the same thing over and over again hoping for a different result.


    • Where are you doing this in your life over and over again?

      That’s what is keeping you stuck.

      For example you can’t keep beating yourself up about past mistakes and thinking you’re not good enough if you want to love yourself. You can’t hate yourself into loving yourself. Or is it relationships? Are you dating different people but the same type of person over and over again, leading to emotionally unavailable partners? If you want a different result you have to change.


    • Whilst I mentioned the paper itself is here in the moment, as authors, as readers we may not always be. We often revisit past chapters from time to time but if we stay there it stops us from reading on in the book in the same way it does with our lives.


    • Further to that, in the book of your life, writers block my happen. If it is happens its okay. Even the best of authors experience writers block. What can you do when you get writers block?

      You can:

      – Find inspiration.
      – Take a break.
      – Freeflow and write.
      – Change things up, maybe listen to music when you write or change where you are writing your book.

      And remember you don’t overcome writers block by staying stuck and doing nothing. Or even waiting for the right moment.  You don’t overcome it wallowing in self pity or procrastinating or even just looking up ways to overcome writer’s block… you overcome it through writing, through taking action just like your life.

      And remember it’s better to write than not write at all. Eventually the rhythm and flow of your words will return.


    • If you’re going through hard times remember it’s just a chapter of your book not the whole story. Nothing lasts forever which is a beautiful thing depending how you see it. Impermanence teaches us to truly appreciate things. It gets us through hard times because we know that pain won’t last forever. I always tell clients if you were happy all the time and nothing went wrong in your life, you would probably be bored and take your life for granted, you wouldn’t be truly living because you wouldn’t know what that is. Death is a compelling factor to live.

    • So how does this all stack up?
      Every day is a new page.
      Every arch of your life is a new chapter.
      Every year is a new series.
      This all makes up the volume, the books of your life.

    • Just like how every page, chapter and series is important in a book as they build to tell a story. This is the same in our lives.

      Everything we go through is part of the human experience. It all happens for a reason.

      When we go through hard times it’s easy to ask why is this happening to me? and default to negative thoughts which in turn make you feel worse off. I’m not saying to always be positive but more to allow yourself to feel your feelings then choose to decide to move forward. Can you reflect on a hard time and see how it was for your higher growth? This comes from a more positive energy which leads to different actions, instead of staying stuck, you choose to continue on with life and move forward.

    • Further to this some chapters may be sweet but they may be short. It’s not always the longest chapters that have the most impact. Sometimes it’s the smallest pages, the half pages.

    Life is Like a Book and You are the Author Episode close and journal prompts for your reflection

    I hope this episode gave you some food for thought. Remember your life is like a book and you are the author. I’d love to end this episode with some journaling prompts for your reflection.

    • Are you the true author of your life or are you letting others write your story?

    • When you give your kids who give your grandkids the story of your life, what do you want to be in that story? What would they learn about you? Are you happy with your story so far?

    • What chapters are you stuck on and can you decide to turn the page?

    • What does your ideal book look like? What makes the book great? A best selling book?

    Thank you for listening to The Growth Through It Podcast With Phi Dang. I will catch you guys next Tuesday with another brand new episode on the 12 Universal Laws, Beyond The Law of Attraction. A very juicy episode indeed and yes there’s more than just the law of attraction. Speak soon and have a beautiful week, love and positivity.

    [Episode 02 – Life is like a Book and You are the Author: Ends]

    Are you wanting to find out more about 1:1 Coaching or working with me? Maybe perhaps you want to know more about me. I’d love to connect with you. You can visit my website phidang.com or connect with me on Instagram @thephidang. Speak to you soon.

    Click here to read more

  • 7 Unexpected, Life-Changing Things I Learnt on a Silent Retreat in Bali

    Phi Dang in front of the Batu Karu Temple in Bali

    What does it mean to be truly silent?

    In true irony, when you are silent the world feels more alive. When you eat you feel the zing of the citrus as it hits your lip. When you listen, you hear all the layers: rustling leaves, chirping birds and running water. When you look, you notice the most minute movements, crawling insects and blades of grass swaying in the wind.

    Bali Silent Retreat.

    Last April in 2019, I decided to finally take the plunge and attend a silent retreat, not in Australia but Bali. I am so thankful for my experience as it taught me so much. Below I share 7 unexpected, life-changing things I learnt on a Silent Retreat in Bali.

    Girl sitting down meditating looking at the sunrise

    01. Mindfulness isn't just sitting down, closing your eyes and crossing your legs.

    Traditionally we think of meditating as the intentional act of taking a moment to close your eyes and sit down. However at the silent retreat, I practiced different wants of being mindful.

    Walking meditation

    The silent retreat in Bali had a small labyrinth in the garden. It was so lovely as it also had stones with different words where you were able to take what you needed e.g. self love, joy, inner peace etc.

     Unlike a maze, a labyrinth has only one way to the centre and one way out.  I would repeatedly walk to the centre, pause and reflect then walk back out. As there is only one path to follow, you begin to be mindful as you don’t need to think about where to go or where the path will lead you. There is the freedom in the labyrinth to take your own path in silence. 

    You can create your own labyrinth of sorts, alternatively many labyrinths are out there. I unexpectedly found out that Centennial Park in Sydney where I live has one. Alternatively if you don’t have one near by, instead of going for a walk whilst listening to music or a podcast, try just walking!


    There is something so heart warming about earthing. It feels like coming home. Earthing energetically reconnects you with the Earth, with nature. Simply stand on grass barefoot. When you are barefoot, free electrons flow between you and the Earth. Barefoot Healing Australia claim that “these electrons could be referred to as nature’s biggest antioxidants and help neutralise damaging excess free radicals that can lead to inflammation and disease in the body.” 

    Whether you believe that or not, there is something comforting about being free from the confines of socks and shoes. To feel your bare feet against the soft grass and dirt. Give it a try!


    You can be mindful by simply observing and listening to the sounds that surround you.
    At the silent retreat it was very still – I could hear the rustling of leaves, birds chirping, running water. Often these sounds become our background noise or we don’t pay attention because we are caught in our thoughts or listening to music. 

    Girl sitting on crying bench Bali Silent Retreat
    Credits: Bali Silent Retreat

    Crying (hear me out...)

    Peculiarly, at the Bali Silent Retreat there is a crying bench in the jungle by the running river. It seems odd, but made so much sense. Often we feel like we can’t or shouldn’t cry because we look weak, we don’t want other people to worry… The Crying Bench openly gave you permission to cry. 

    Crying can be a beautiful release and bring presence to how you are feeling physically and emotionally. 

    02. You experience more by doing less.

    Often we fill up our days with so much being ‘busy’ that we don’t get to be present and enjoy what we are doing. When you strip away being busy, distractions you get to just be instead of do. This applies not only physically but mentally too.

    When we are living our busy lives, our thoughts jump.
    “I can only spend maximum an hour here or else I’ll be late for the next thing.”
    “What do I have to buy from the shops again for dinner?”
    “I wonder what Julia is doing right now?”

    In silence, as life is simplified especially without technology, there is a greater opportunity to be. To get curious about your thoughts. To notice and observe your thoughts.

    03. Being uncomfortable is not that bad, it always passes.

    Being uncomfortable is a part of being human. Especially when you are you doing something you have never done before.  Especially when you are are somewhere you have never been. 

    When you distill it down, being uncomfortable is a set of feelings. That is it. Nothing more, nothing less. I mean it’s not that bad is it? For a moment you feel uncomfortable and then it passes. The greater the discomfort, the greater your growth.

    04. You realise you are the observer to your thoughts.

    When you slow down and stay silent, the one constant you notice is your thoughts. Thoughts roll in and out constantly without your decision to. Your thoughts are involuntary. When you truly witness this, you realise that. It sounds so simple but it’s easy to forget or not even realise as when you are caught up so in busy, modern day life you aren’t always paying attention to the nature of your thoughts. 

    Your thoughts feel as if they are reality because they pop up in there… thoughts are not facts, they are just that… thoughts. You are the observer, it’s like watching clouds go by. Not only that you truly notice how many thoughts you have a day, it is known we have 60,000!

    Girl taking a photo of sea

    05. You rely on your phone more than you think.

    Given I was going to go full cold turkey on speaking, I thought I would do the same with using my phone. I locked it up alongside my passport in the lockers available at the front of the retreat. Being away from my phone meant I was unable to keep in touch with friends at the touch of a button or to even check the time. Those are the obvious things one would expect when dithcing your phone.

    I came to realise that I also used my phone to buffer. Buffering is something we do to keep us from experiencing our lives. We do it when we want to avoid feeling something or doing something. In this case, I realised that I used my phone often to avoid being in the moment with myself.

    When I’m bored, I usually reach out for my phone and endlessly scroll. 
    When it’s silent, I usually reach out for my phone so I don’t feel awkward.
    When I don’t want to focus on something within my thoughts, I reach out for my phone.

    Without my phone, I had no buffer, no choice but to be at one with myself. To listen to my thoughts. To feel everything within my body. Whilst it was hard at first, I loved having the opportunity to disconnect from the external world and reconnect with myself within. 

    06. You can get to know someone without speaking to them.

    There’s a classic saying, “the vibes don’t lie.” Even with words, people’s energy is palpable. You can feel when someone is sad and nursing a broken heart. You can feel when someone is at peace with themselves.

    Further to that, you learn to really observe people’s mannerisms and movements. I found myself intrigued when I saw what someone had chosen to eat or what to read. As with observation it’s all in the eyes when you make eye contact with someone. The eyes truly are the window to the soul.

    07. You can find love whilst being silent.

    It’s true what they say, we fall in love with our hearts. On the final day of my retreat, we were went on a day excursion to Batu Karu temple. The beautiful template is known to be the source of all water in Bali and where locals make an annual pilgrimage each year in gratitude. 

    It is important to note here that outside the retreat, you are permitted to speak if you wish. Given it was my last day and I almost lost my passport, I ended up speaking to my group. This is how I met the lovely ‘E’. I had noticed her on the retreat, however as it was silent I did not speak to her. We became friends from this moment and kept in touch over Instagram.

    My heart was filled with joy when she messaged me and I found out that she had met someone on the silent retreat! To this day she has moved overseas to be with her now husband and have they have the most gorgeous little boy together.

    It just shows that love goes beyond physically speaking, it can be see with the eyes and felt with the heart. The small moments E and her husband got to speak (between large gaps of silence) went onto spark a beautiful love. So inspiring! Just shows you never know where or when you may meet the love of your life.

    If you've always wanted to experience a silent retreat... you should do it!

    It is one thing to read about it, another to experience it for yourself. I am so glad I got to stay a few nights at the Bali Silent Retreat. As you can see it taught me so much and now I truly savour silence. Silence is a great teacher.

    Click here to read more

  • What is the law of attraction? Learn more!

    It has been said that the law of attraction is the most powerful law that exists. There is so much information on what it is from thousands of sources. This article serves as an introduction on the law of attraction.

    The law of attraction

    The main thread that runs through all theories on the law of attraction is the power of your thoughts and their impact on your life.

    Simply put, the law of attraction it is, positive thoughts bring positive experiences and the inverse is true.

    Negative thoughts bring negative experiences.

    You have probably heard of the law of attraction through sayings such as:

    • “Positive energy, positive vibes”
    • “Like attracts like”
    • “It is done unto you as you believe”

    Where did the law of attraction come from?

    The law of attraction is also known as “The Secret,” from a popular book and film produced.

    Mainstream awareness of the notion can be attributed to Abraham Hicks. Abraham is a “group consciousness from the non-physical dimension” that communicates through a woman by the name of Esther Hicks. She calls Abraham “infinite intelligence.”

    Is the law of attraction scientific?

    From a scientific point of view, it can be distilled down to ‘confirmation bias.’ This is a phenomenon whereby we notice and pay more attention to what supports our existing thoughts and beliefs.

    Proponents of the law posit that there are aspects of modern psychology rooted in the law to support its existence and truth.

    So what does this all mean?

    My personal take is make what you will of it. The law of attraction is unique to everyone. You may see it as a vibrational energy mindset whereas someone else thinks it’s nonsensical.

    Take aspects of it that you like and see fit from your point of view. What makes sense to you.

    I truly believe in the power of thoughts and love the power and notion behind the mindset.

    You have power to deliberately use your thoughts to your benefit. It is a way to shape your reality.

    The power of the law of attraction

    Harnessing the power of the law attraction will enable to you create, attract and allow everything you desire to come to fruition.

    The law emphasises how powerful you are. The power of your thoughts, your attitude and your mind.

    The law of attraction gives you awareness to the power of your thoughts. Your thoughts have the power to give you truly everything you want in life.

    Change your thoughts and change your world.

    The laws

    the law of attraction: everything begins as a thought + energy flows where focus goes + your point of attraction

    1. Everything begins as a thought

    Thoughts lead the way. Things that were once thoughts as ‘impossible’ are now ‘possible.’

    2. Energy flows where focus goes

    Focus is through our thoughts, communication and action. As above, thoughts lead the way.

    It is so important to focus in a way that truly serves you.

    The law just is. It reflects our life back to us whether we want it to or not.

    3. Point of attraction

    Point of attraction is your beliefs, your momentum and your state of being.

    Everyone has a unique point of attraction. Your point of attractions is made up of your beliefs, momentum and state of being. The below will break down the three factors that create your point of attraction.

    Your general and specific beliefs

    Within the frame of the law of attraction, a belief is what is true for you. Abraham Hicks extends the notion of the belief to a thoughts you keep thinking.


    The amount of thought-energy invested in a subject.

    Your current state of being

    How you feel now. Your inner compass that guides you. It is how your body physically responds

    In conclusion

    The law of attraction harnesses the power and energy of your thoughts. Simply put it is the combination of everything begins as a thought, energy flows where focus goes and your point of attraction.

    Like many concepts out there, see for yourself it works for you!

    If you liked this concept, you may like these powerful mindset and inspirational articles

    You are Magic – in her vitality

    Today is your day – in her vitality

    Change your thoughts and change your world – in her vitality

    Click here to read more

  • Hygge Self Care

    Learn all about this popular Hygge lifestyle which is pronounced as hoo-gah or hue-gah. If something is hygge, it is known as hyggelig.

    What is hygge? Hygge definition, Hygge meaning

    Hygge is a Danish concept that roughly translates to comfort and coziness. It’s the feeling you get from being rugged up on a cold winters day, a cosy contentment. It is well being and self care. It may be a part of the reason that Denmark is consistently ranked as one of the happiest countries in the world despite their freezing winters. In saying that, hygge is a lovely lifestyle for enjoying Winter.

    You may have seen it trending on blogs, used to market ridiculously expensive items such as candles, blankets, plates, throws and rugs.

    All in all, hygge can be summed up as self care – to be cosy, content and comfortable.

    Hygge is nourishing. Hygge is a self care mindset.

    Who invented hygge?
    Hygge has its origins in the word ‘hug’ which makes sense given its all about comfort.

    In Old Norse, ‘hug’ meant soul, mind, consciousness.

    Benefits of hygge

    • Self care – feel happier and at ease.

    • Less stress – there is comfort in taking care of yourself.

    • A relaxed state of mind – all tension melts away.

    What hygge is not

    • Hygge is not being sucked into the hype of expensive and well marketed items.

    • Hygge is a feeling, a self care mindset.

    • It is simple, Hygge is to feel at ease and comfortabx

    A warm cosy blanket and coffee, what's not to love?
    Creating the feeling of hygge

    Creating the feeling of hygge

    • A comfortable environment – A calm and inviting place to relax in. You may have a nook somewhere where you live, it could be lots of cushions and pillows, under a blanket. The use of soothing colours such as blue and muted, dusty colours – think blush, beige and tan.
    • A peaceful setting – It could be complete silence or relaxing music. The removal of distractions such as electronics and your phone.
    • A warm drink – it could be a hot chocolate, turmeric latte, tea, coffee, mulled wine.
    • Blankets – something warm and soft to keep you feeling cosy.
    • Candles – Comforting and radiate warmth. Alternatively consider your lighting, warm and soft instead of harsh.
    • Comfortable clothes – Big shirts and jumpers, trackpants, leggings, knits, socks. Hint hygge may not be glamorous but it is damn comfy!
    • Connection – Surround yourself with people who make you feel happy and loved.
    • Decorations – Whatever makes you feel warmth such as photos of loved ones, significant memories, travel etc. It could be leafy plants and succulents.
    • Mindful indulgence – Allow yourself to eat what you love without any guilt.
    • Presence – It’s being in the moment, appreciating the little things that give you comfort.
    • Relax – have a hot bath, read a book, snuggle, sip tea, play board games.

    Intrigued by different cultures and the mindsets they encourage?

    Read about the art of Fika originating from Sweden.

    the hygge life
    the hygge life

    Click here to read more

  • The power of now during Coronavirus

    The power of now. Thriving during a health crisis of COVID-19 Coronavirus.

    “Repeat After Me: This is not the new normal. This is the now.”

    Nedra Glover Tawwab, THERAPIST

    This quote about how this is no the new normal, this is the now… It had me thinking about the immense power of living in the moment. The power of now in times of Coronavirus.

    Being present.

    How to thrive during unprecedented times. 

    On a site note, what is normal anyway? We are heavily influenced by our upbringing, what we see in the media. What is normal?

    Back to the present moment. 

    What if this global event was a divine message of the universe to you out of your routine?

    A divine redirection, a detour Amazing Race style. An awakening.

    To remind you that you cannot control everything.

    To force you to surrender. 

    To nudge you to flex your mental muscles. 

    To be agile, adaptive and flexible. To remind you of your innate power within, that you can control our perspective and attitude. This applies to life as a whole, not only in times of a global health crisis such as COVID-19.

    When you are stuck in a rut.

    When you are feeling down and helpless.

    When you hit rock bottom.

    When you are at the mercy of events that are beyond your control. The loss of a loved one, the loss of your job, the break up that shattered your soul, the friendship where you were betrayed.

    What does this all mean?

    To be present.

    To be present in order to thrive during times of uncertainty as we globally face now.

    So how do you thrive during a health crisis such as COVID-19/Corona Virus?

    Be present. Be here. Be now. The power of now in times of Coronavirus.

    What a weird yet strangely incredible time, to be alive during a global event such as this. In this very moment, we are all experiencing a global health crisis. You cannot control or plan the future, like any other time, however this crisis gives you clarity on this notion.

    What you can do is be present.

    Feel your broad range of emotions. 

    I feel anxious. I feel scared. I feel hopeful. I feel hopeless. I feel nervous. I feel worried. I feel at peace. I feel positive. I feel.

    What are my current surroundings? What can you see? Is there a scent to the air?

    When eating a meal, what can you taste? Is it hot? Is it cold? Is it soft or crunchy? 

    What do you want to remember from this crisis? What is your ideal day? What lifts you up? What drains your energy? 


    Instead of feeling frustrated that you cannot plan for the future, why not embrace now?

    Live in the moment. Live in the minute to minute, live day to day.

    Feel your mind, body and soul surrendering.  

    Surrendering to the present moment.

    Surrendering to inner peace.

    Enjoy the present moment. 

    Affirmations for being in the moment

    ♥ I am.

    ♥ I am here now.

    I am present.

    See the silver linings

    As humans we are wired to be bias to the negative unconsciously. 

    A study, Not all emotions are created equal: The negativity bias in social-emotional development by Vaish et. al states

    “…Adults display a negativity bias, or the propensity to attend to, learn from, and use negative information far more than positive information.”

    Vaish et. al

    Whilst it’s in our nature to easily see and feel the losses due to this crisis, there are silver linings.

    You know when you go through a heartbreak and you wish the world around you would stop? Well right now, the whole world is on some sort of strange pause of what you are used to. The whole world is essentially with you. We are all feeling the pain, however we all also have the opportunity to see the positivity in all of this.

    Examples of silver linings:

    Working from home enables a flexible way of living. There’s no commute to work, I can even wear my pyjama pants if I want to! I can easily do little tidbits around the house as a break from work. I’ve always wanted to know what it’s like to work from home on a consistent basis and this is an opportunity to see what it is like.

    I have more time in my day as I no longer need to commute or because my work hours have been cut. I have been given more time! I can use this time to rest, to focus on my passions, to work on my projects, to spend time with my loved ones in my household.

    Clarity on what is important to me. This virus has stripped back my daily life. I have time to reflect. The absence of certain activities, products and people in my life makes it clear what I feel is important to my life. 

    Silver lining affirmations

    I can find the positivity amongst the chaos.
    ♥ There is always a positive to every experience in my life.
    ♥ This is an opportunity to have clarity on what is important to me.

    Maintain connection

    We are forced to connect in ways that we may not be used to. The absence of physical presence and touch makes you grateful for all the times you were able to.

    Connect with old friends.

    Connect with people who uplift our spirits.

    Connect with our community.

    You can connect in various ways such as online through Zoom or Skype. Using applications such as Houseparty, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, WhatsApp, iMessage. Email. Over the phone. Find a Facebook group or forum to speak to like minded and different people.

    In saying that, you can also connect with yourself.

    You can do this by pausing. By breathing. By reflecting. Being in the present moment. 

    You are here now.

    The power of now in times of Coronavirus.

    Connection affirmations

    There are always ways to connect.
    ♥ I am well connected.
    ♥ I have the opportunity to deeply connect with myself.

    Self care

    Self care can take various forms. With daily life at a pause in this very moment, it is an amazing opportunity to take care of yourself. 

    “Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. Although it’s a simple concept in theory, it’s something we very often overlook.” 


    Examples of self care

    + Resting. Doing nothing at all.

    + Doing what nourishes your soul. That could be for example yoga, making a tea, having a bath, calling a friend, reading a book, journalling.

    + Speaking kindly to ourselves and melt away the negativity. Challenge your mind to see the positivity of a situation. For example instead of “I’m bored”, “How lucky am I to have an opportunity to find something to do. My options are a, b, c etc.”

    Self care affirmations

    I am important.
    ♥ I love myself

    ♥ I take care of myself.

    Pursue pleasure, set fire to your soul, to your life

    With the gift of time, give yourself permission to explore and focus on your self.

    Pleasure is defined as “a feeling of happy satisfaction and enjoyment.”

    Pleasure comes in different forms.

    During a time like this, I’ve definitely felt guilty when I’m doing nothing… the below passage by Ella Jane in her article, “Can we stop trying to optimise our isolation?” really spoke to me.

    “The idea that we are supposed to continually self-optimise, even in the face of a life-threatening pandemic, is surely the dark underbelly of the hustle-culture we find ourselves in in 2020. We’re living in an age where each hour has been broken down for us in order to commodify our waking seconds.”


    I think we can collectively agree that the age of COVID-19 is simply a terrifying time to be alive, and that tending to your basic needs while coping with so much is more than many people can handle, let alone the pressure of using each spare second to optimise our existence.


    We are all uniquely experiencing this moment.

    I’ve accepted and surrendered to the fact, at times I will feel like resting and doing nothing. At other times I will feel like being productive.

    No matter which it is, I hope the following questions will help you in pursuit of what you find pleasurable.

    + What is something you’ve always wanted to do or do more of? 

    + What makes you feel more alive? 

    + What makes you tingle with happiness?

    + What makes you excited to wake up in the morning? 

    + What makes you radiate positivity? 

    + What makes you smile?

    + What energises you?

    Pursuing your passion affirmations:

    ♥ I pursue my passion with zest and fire.
    ♥ I am radiantly alive.

    ♥ I feel so alive. I am full of energy. I am magnetic.

    In conclusion on the power of now, embracing uncertainty and thriving during a health crisis

    That concludes 5 tips on how to thrive during a health crisis such as COVID-19/Corona Virus.

    + Be present. Be here. Be now.
    + See the silver linings
    + Maintain connection
    + Self care
    + Pursue pleasure, set fire to your soul, to your life

    More affirmations to help you get through this uncertain time of COVID-19

    The power of affirmations to live a soul fulfilling life

    27 Calming affirmations and mantras for acceptance

    Struggling with anxious thoughts? Here are 22 powerful affirmations to reframe your thoughts for a positive mindset

    46 Affirmations to radiate self love

    Additional resources to help cope during this unprecedented time of COVID-19

    Coronavirus Anxiety: Coping with Stress, Fear, and WorryHelpGuide

    Coronavirus: Resources for anxiety, stress & wellbeing – Black Dog Institute

    Coronavirus Mental Wellbeing Support Service – BeyondBlue

    Decoding The Power of NowEckhart Tolle

    Click here to read more