It has been a year: say ‘hello’ to change

3 Apr

It has been a year - P030414

As I explained extensively in my previous post, it has officially been a year since I started this project. A lot of exciting things have happened as you can also read in that post. Because of that in-between-post I now had four instead of two weeks to spend on my lovely tasks:

* These weeks greet the people you meet

** Which changes in your life are you resisting? Try to look at the positive things that come along with this change and take a step towards this change.


Little side note for the Dutch with us who still write greetings at the end of a message like the Dutch word that sounds equivalent (groetjes) but isn’t: You can use the word ‘Greetings’ to say hi, so use it the same way as you would use the word ‘hi’. You do not use ‘hi’ at the end of a message, so do not use the word ‘greetings’ there either. That is such a Dutch thing to do (maybe it is a secret way to recognise each other in foreign countries, if that is the case, maybe we shouldn’t stop doing it. I think I just discovered the Dutch secret top spy way of connecting with each other ;))

Right, anyway…. My week of greeting everyone. Even though I thought this would be very tricky in a city like London this is one of the tasks that is really fun to do. Key point here is that a friend of mine told me you do not actually have to say ‘Hi’ or ‘Good morning’ to greet someone. You can also just smile or nod your head. Very true, but you do have to catch someone’s eye before doing that, otherwise you are just walking around with a smile on your face, randomly nodding your head. (People might start to think!) So, here is a new game I started playing with this task: I spy, I spy, your little eye. (Little side note for the Dutch, this is a little twist to the English variation of ‘Ik zie, ik zie wat jij niet ziet). I play this game with everybody who walks by: can I catch your eye, or can’t I catch your eye? If we both win and we catch each other’s eyes there is a prize: I smile or nod, or even say ‘good morning’, mostly to the surprise of the other person. If we do not succeed, there is no prize and we just go our separate ways without this little moment we could have shared together. I swear it is a lot of fun and people smile back, are friendly and even greet me back regularly.

Conclusion: Nothing to lose and a lot to gain: just keep greeting everyone.


 Just keep changing, just keep changing

Change, one of the things we cannot avoid. Buddha tells us it is the most important factor that makes us miserable, because we would like things to stay the same. If we like something, we pull it as close as we can and we want to keep it there forever and ever. If we don’t like something, we push it away as far as possible where it should stay until the end of its days. However, that is just not how life works. Change is inevitable: things we like will move away from us now and then and things we don’t like we come close, no matter how hard we try to keep it away. So instead of fighting the change we should just accept it the way it is. In the case of this task I should even look for something positive in a difficult change. Another reason why we don’t like change that much is because it is unknown and unsecure and we like to be safe and sound, being able to predict everything that might harm us. Well, yeah, that’s just not how things work. The change I was struggling with over the last four weeks was regarding my job and career path. True I love the people I work with and a lot of the things I do are inspiring but let’s be honest, I do not want to be an administrative assistant for ever. (In that case good that things change ;)). I discovered that what I truly would love to do is to connect psychological interventions with positive psychological theory. Now the change that I was resisting was the steps that are probably needed to get there: first of all, recognizing what you truly want to do. I think this is something very important and every couple of months we should definitely take a moment, sit in quiet (somehow people find it hard to believe I can do that ;)) and think about what it is we really want and if we are still on the right path that takes us in the right direction. Secondly, if we are not on the right path, we should change direction. So I applied for a second part-time job. I will let you know when I am accepted but in the meantime this was much more difficult than in sounds. I had to speak to my boss about it, which somehow is always a bit nerve-racking. I do not even now why, I think my bosses are great and after each conversation I always wonder why I was so nervous in the first place. But yes, we aren’t rational. We want to perform well and most of all we want others to recognise that we are performing well. I do recognise the positive aspects of this change: new challenges and new ways to do what I am really passionate about. Next to this I also took the step towards this change: I applied for the second part-time job, I talked to my bosses about it and I asked for a reference letter from one of them. Now all I can do is wait for this change to happen, which is a really nice thing, as change will happen eventually. Meantime I am enjoying the here and now 🙂

Conclusion: Change is inevitable, fighting it leads to misery so lean into it and make the best of it.


And now, my first card of the second half of this project (they even have a different colour:) :

Task 53:

Concentrate these weeks on the edges of your mouth. Are they down? Pull them into a smile.

Funny, there is an e-reader on this website which you can download, a small guide with 7 easy tips for a happier life. One of the steps is to be aware of your ‘neutral face’. The face you have when you are not paying attention and instead smile. It is scientifically proven that if you smile your body releases hormones, which make you feel better, and gives you more reason to smile. So, let’s keep smiling!

Task 54:

Write down at least twenty things you are good at. Take three of them and develop them further.

Okay, I think this says it all: my first reaction was: twenty things I am good at? That is really a lot! Haha, point taken. Right, let’s think about this for a week and then see how I can develop them further. I am sure this will make me feel good about myself and increases self-confidence, always nice to have!

That was it guys, see you in two weeks!

Have a lovely two weeks!

As always with all my love,


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2 Responses to “It has been a year: say ‘hello’ to change”

  1. Milou April 3, 2014 at 14:47 #

    Proud of you chica! Wat een jaar! Vol uitdagingen! Heel cool dat je dit gedaan hebt! Xxx

    • Anne-Sophie Sloet van Oldruitenborgh April 6, 2014 at 14:18 #

      Thanks love! And thank you for all the support, you were a big part of what made that year a great one! <3