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5 Reasons to Keep Our Wine (Life) Glass Half Full

5 Reasons to Keep Our Wine (Life) Glass Half Full

The Wine Glass is how we hold (and behold) our lives on our journey. And keeping it half full or half empty (abundance vs scarcity) leaves room for the good stuff that is yet to come.

So let’s have some fun with this “wine-life” analogy and brush up on our Sommelier skills along the way and maybe even apply it to our living.

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Sommelier

     1. Creating our own “wine cellar”.

    The wine we put in our basement requires some planning. We check our budget. We make decisions on white, red, rose, sparkling wines, and even throw in some after dinner liqueurs. There are many types of wine categories but our wine stocks usually contain table wines (with meals and Hors d’oeuves) as well as cooking wines, Sherrys, and Ports. Do your homework and know your wine terms. Go here to know your wine types by region, grape, and type.

    The things we put in our “life cellar” will also require some planning. Our relationships, our career, our spirituality, our lifestyle, and our health style all contribute to what we do to and for ourselves. We can make our life as purposeful as our wine cellar.

     2. Creating our meal to pair with our wine.

    The wine and meal pairing can be done either way. Do we reverse engineer the meal by picking the wine and then designing a meal around it? Or do we decide on our meal items first and then go find the perfect wine pairing to compliment the flavors of our meal? Well, go ahead and try them both! Either way, you need to know what you want (and what you have) to create the result you desire.

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    The life pairing requires that you also know what you want (and what you have) to create the desired result. But the challenge is to stop reaching for other people’s goals and dreams. They are not you. Our genetics and environmental experiences make each of us a one-of-a-kind creation requiring a one-of-a-kind life-plan. Our decision needs to be our decision!

    3. Let the wine “breathe”.

    Our wine needs to breathe so decanting it allows the oxygen to bring the wine alive. For older wines it also allows the sediment to “settle”. Then by pouring it into a glass half full, it can continue to breathe and will unlock the aroma and bouquet that hints of vanilla, berries, nuts,  roses, or countless other earthly delights!

    Our life needs to breathe as well. Our day-to-day life is full of saying “yes” to too many things that suck the oxygen out of us, so that we can’t breathe and fully live our lives. Maybe we need to plan each day half full and leave room for the rest.

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    4. Enjoy the pairing and take in the experience.

    The wine (if paired correctly) should connect everything during and after the dinner. The food, the wine, the company, the conversation, and the experience are many times the beginnings of great memories.

    Our life (if paired correctly) can also connect ourselves to our passions and dreams. Having space and purposeful planning can create the right environment for you to thrive and “breathe”.

    5. Design your future menus with the key learnings of your past wine pairings.

    What wine discoveries did you experience? What pairing ideas do you now have for wines and foods to prepare? And who do you want to include on your journey?

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    What life pairing discoveries have you learned? Are you becoming the person you want to be? Are your dreams yours? Does it feel right?

    Make room for the good stuff such as more wine, aromas and bouquets, and even swirling the wine to enhance the flavor.  My French-born father, Roger Voisin, many times took peaches, raspberries, strawberries, or pears and dropped them into his half filled wine glass after dinner. He cut up some Camembert or Brie (he loved the soft cheeses), added a piece of French bread and had that for his dessert. The conversations that usually followed were full of life, love, and reflections on the good things in life. He made room for the good stuff!

    Do the same with your “life-glass” – unexpected experiences, conversations with like-minded people, reflections of the moment, a sunset cloud formation, anything you might discover in your day-to-day life. Keep working and your future will mature into a life half-full!

    Featured photo credit: Wines glass half full via farm8.staticflickr.com

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    Last Updated on July 23, 2019

    5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

    5 Steps To Move Out Of Stagnancy In Life

    In the journey of growth, there are times when we grow and excel. We are endlessly driven and hyped up, motivated to get our goals.

    Then there are times when we stagnate. We feel uninspired and unmotivated. We keep procrastinating on our plans. More often than not, we get out of a rut, only to get back into another one.

    How do you know if you are stagnating? Here are some tell-tale signs:

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    • If you have been experiencing chronic procrastination on your goals
    • If you don’t ever feel like doing anything
    • If you keep turning to sleep, eating, games, mindless activities and entertainment for comfort
    • If you know you should be doing something, but yet you keep avoiding it
    • If you have not achieved anything new or significant now relative to 1 month, 2 months or 3 months ago
    • If you have a deep sense of feeling that you are living under your potential

    When we face stagnation in life, it’s a sign of deeper issues. Stagnation, just like procrastination, is a symptom of a problem. It’s easy to beat ourselves over it, but this approach is not going to help. Here, I will share 5 steps to help you move out of this stagnation. They won’t magically transform your life in 1 night (such changes are never permanent because the foundations are not built), but they will help you get the momentum going and help you get back on track.

    1. Realize You’re Not Alone

    Everyone stagnates at some point or another. You are not alone in this and more importantly, it’s normal. In fact, it’s amazing how many of my clients actually face the same predicament, even though all of them come from different walks of life, are of different ages, and have never crossed paths. Realizing you are not alone in this will make it much easier to deal with this period. By trying to “fight it”, you’re only fighting yourself. Accept this situation, acknowledge it, and tell yourself it’s okay. That way, you can then focus on the constructive steps that will really help you.

    2. Find What Inspires You

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    Stagnation comes because there isn’t anything that excites you enough to take action. If you don’t have a habit of setting goals, and instead just leave yourself to daily mundanes, it’s not surprising you are experiencing stagnation. What do you want to do if there are no limitations? If you can have whatever you want, what will it be? The answers to these questions will provide the fuel that will drive you forward.

    On the other hand, even if you are an experienced goal setter, there are times when the goals you set in the past lose their appeal now. It’s normal and it happens to me too. Sometimes we lose touch with our goals, since we are in a different emotional state compared to when we first set them. Sometimes our priorities change and we no longer want to work on those goals anymore. However, we don’t consciously realize this, and what happens is we procrastinate on our goals until it compounds into a serious problem. If that’s the case for you, it’s time to relook into your goals. There’s no point in pursuing goals that no longer inspire you. Trash away your old goals (or just put them aside) and ask yourself what you really want now. Then go for them.

    3. Give Yourself a Break

    When’s the last time you took a real break for yourself? 3 months? 6 months? 1 year? Never? Perhaps it’s time to take a time-out. Prolonged working can cause someone to become disillusioned as they lose sight of who they are and what they want.

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    Go take some extended leave from work. A few days at bare minimum; a few weeks or months will be great. Some of my ex-colleagues have quit their jobs and took months out to do some self-reflection. Of course, some of us might not have that luxury, so we can stick to a few weeks of leave. Go on a trip elsewhere and get away from your work and your life. Use this chance to get a renewed perspective of life. Think about your life purpose, what you want and what you want to create for your life in the future. These are big questions that require deep thinking over them. It’s not about finding the answers at one go, but about taking the first step to finding the answers.

    4. Shake up Your Routines

    Being in the same environment, doing the same things over and over again and meeting the same people can make us stagnant. This is especially if the people you spend the most time with are stagnant themselves.

    Change things around. Start with simple things, like taking a different route to work and eating something different for breakfast. Have your lunch with different colleagues, colleagues you never talked much with. Work in a different cubicle if your work has free and easy seating. Do something different than your usual for weekday evenings and weekends. Cultivate different habits, like exercising every day, listening to a new series of podcasts every morning to work, reading a book, etc (here’s 6 Proven Ways To Make New Habits Stick). The different contexts will give you different stimulus, which will trigger off different thoughts and actions in you.

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    When I’m in a state of stagnancy, I’ll get a sense of what’s making me stagnate. Sometimes it’s the environment I’m in, sometimes it’s the people I’ve been hanging out with, sometimes it’s my lifestyle. Most of the times it’s a combination of all these. Changing them up helps to stir myself out of the stagnant mode.

    5. Start with a Small Step

    Stagnation also comes from being frozen in fear. Maybe you do want this certain goal, but you aren’t taking action. Are you overwhelmed by the amount of work needed? Are you afraid you will make mistakes? Is the perfectionist in you taking over and paralyzing you?

    Let go of the belief that it has to be perfect. Such a belief is a bane, not a boon. It’s precisely from being open to mistakes and errors that you move forward. Break down what’s before you into very very small steps, then take those small steps, a little step at a time. I had a client who had been stagnating for a long period because he was afraid of failing. He didn’t want to make another move where he would make a mistake. However, not wanting to make a mistake has led him to do absolutely nothing for 2-3 years. On the other hand, by doing just something, you would already be making progress, whether it’s a mistake or not. Even if you make a supposed “mistake”,  you get feedback to do things differently in the next step. That’s something you would never have known if you never made a move.

    More to Help You Stay Motivated

    Here are some resources that will help you break out of your current phase:

    Featured photo credit: Anubhav Saxena via unsplash.com

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