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How to Live More Consciously

posted by Mimi 20. February 2016 51 Comments

We are too busy hiding our heads behind weighty tomes in order learn chemical formulae and laws by heart that we will forget very soon. Our aim is a successful final degree, just to start afterwards an all the more successful career. Therefore, we are sitting for weeks behind big screens because the next deadline for the twenty-page term paper has to be met at any price. No, today we do not have time to go out with our friends. Since we were little, we have already been instilled that work always comes before pleasure. As if we first had to deserve it to live.

John Lennon once said:

Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans.

And he proved to be right. As soon as our duties get a higher priority than enjoying life, something is likely going wrong. One day we will probably wake up and ask ourselves: “Have we actually lived?”

We will be even older, have more obligations and will devote our life to our family, our children – if we will have some. With age, it will not be easier and the problems will not become any smaller.

We have unlearned to live consciously!

Nevertheless, living consciously is easier said than done. I, too, have realized lately, how easy it is to abandon oneself to the daily grind and to conjure up excuses, why it is not possible to allow oneself some fun. The society has imposed norms on us that tell us how to live. We can see it in our fellow men, day after day. At the extreme, we are talking about those who just turned 17 and have already started to study. Ideally, they are accomplishing their Bachelor study program within three years and are taking right after that their Master’s degree. Finally, they are standing with their young 23 years in the middle of the working world. Most of the students will probably complete their Master’s degree in average with 27. And their lives, we use as guidelines.

So, what about me?

How to live more consciously

Photographer: Talkasia

Social networks like Facebook give us incentives to always compare ourselves with other people. Person XY has already done this and that, completed a semester abroad, has already done its doctorate and now works for a highly respected company. And I’m standing in the midle of my studies, still have to absolve a three-months mandatory internship and jump several times a week from one job to another in order to finance my costs of living. Then, there are 7 term papes that have to be handed in by the end of the semester and the common bureaucracy stuff which takes more time than we want to.

But how is it possible that you still have some time left?

Quite simply: I TAKE my time.

I am studying, I am working and then take the remaining time to enjoy life. I like to be free, to travel and to see my friends and family. Having fun, to get to know new people without always keeping obligations in my mind. Whoever wants to tell me that he could not just take some days off in the semester breaks because he had too much to do for university, has in my view simply unlearned to shape his life autonomously.

Those are lame excuses, because if one really likes to and if life was really so important to oneself, one can always find some time. Even if it means to add one or two semesters to the studies. So what?! Finally, what matters here is that one has tasted this life as far as possible to the fullest. And this is also possible without turning one’s back to the carreer.

How can I live more consciously?

This question has been on my mind for a longer time. Sometimes, I was discontent and I still am occasionally because I have the feeling to be caught too much in the daily grind. It is obvious, that it is a physical impossibility to give a universal answer to the question of the more conscious life because everyone has their individual life expectations.

Nevertheless, I can give you some suggestions and tell you about how I am trying to appreciate everyday life a little bit more – and above all how I try to enjoy it.

  • I TRY TO LIVE EVERY DAY AS IF I WAS TRAVELLING.

Whenever I am on a journey, I like to discover every single detail of my environment. I suddenly become curious for the small, numerous local occurences, as if a child was encountering something new for the first time. One is more interested, likes to get in touch with foreign people and to exchange experiences. One likes to immerse oneself with the whole heart and soul in a foreign culture of a country. To be free and passionate. Are not these some of the reasons, why we love travelling so much?

How to live more consciously Photographer: Talkasia

So why should it not be like this in the own hometown as well? Everytime, I come back from my journeys, I realize how familiar and simoultaneously foreign Frankfurt is to me, although I have been living here for a long time.

That is why I decide to:

  • APPROACH MORE OFTEN TO PEOPLE. TO TALK WITH THEM.

For those who also live in Germany and have already travelled a lot, may have realized that the German culture seems to be a bit reserved in some matters. I perceive that behavior pattern sometimes as “bourgeois” or even rather as “anxious”. Often, I cannot get rid of the feeling that some people here are a little asocial because they fear. They are afraid to be exposed. On the other hand, they are afraid of things that are outlandish or unfamiliar to them. Most of us have already made experiences with “the foreign” and have branded that on our minds.

How often are we encountering a person on the street that we find quite interesting, but do not have the courage to approach them? Likely, the answer will be “often” at the majority. That is quite a pity because lately, I had many times positive experiences with new acquaintances. Especially through Couchsurfing I was allowed to meet wonderful people that I can count to my close friends now. Therefore: Go for it! :)

  • DO NOT BECOME DEPDENENT ON OTHERS.

Who does not know the situation: one has been looking forward for days to an event, when suddenly the friends have to cancel. It is a quite sobering feeling, but moping does not make things better. It is extremley important being able to keep oneself busy.

We should make ourselves less dependent, should be less reliant on others.

For a long time, it was quite difficult for me to go out alone. However, I am always getting better and I am always learning something new. At first it may feel a bit peculiar to go on an event without friends. Still, this is all just a matter of practice – and above all a matter of the personal attitude. Trust a little in yourself and just try to have fun. You will realize that one gets often much easier in contact with foreign people.

Furthermore, you do not have to compromise at all and you can freely make your decisions without taking care for other people. Thus: do not fall into despair the next time if your friends will have no time. Go out alone and make the best of the situation. You will certainly have a wonderful evening! ;)

  • BE VARIED AND TRY OUT SOMETHING NEW.

Bild How to live more consciously 2Photographer: Talkasia

  • How about trying out new bars, restaurants or clubs, even if you have your usual spots? Visit different events. Facebook can be a huge help to discover new places. For instance, I will go more often to cultural events here in Frankfurt. In every town are from time to time theatre plays, art exhibitions or entertaining poetry slam evenings.
  • If you would like to earn some extra money and also like to have more varied jobs, try to test yourself occupationally in new areas. As a student one has various possibilities. I have worked for years as a hostess or waitress in the event sector for different agencies and could therefore take part on international events, where one always meets interesting personalities. Since I felt like needing a little change, I am next to my studies also a dog- and babysitter, and give some extra lessons in English and German.
  • PREFER THE REAL WORLD TO THE VIRTUAL WORLD.

It is said that new technologies bring people from all over the world closer together. For acquaintances across borders this might be true. Though, in the circle of friends in the immediate vicinity, they rather separate us and create social barriers between us. We shut ourselves off from each other. We unlearn to cultivate contacts personally. Rather long whatsapp messages instead of making a short call. Then, stalking person X instead of confronting her.

While technical improvements are booming, we are always reverting back in the social area, and hide ourselves day after day behind big screens from reality. Living consciously means to be present physically as well as mentally and to share unforgettable moments together. We should try more often to cultivate our personal contacts without the help of smartphones and the internet. It can be very relieving to escape from the ongoing flood of mass information. This also includes:

  • BE MORE OFTEN OUTSIDE. DEVELOP AN AWARENESS FOR YOUR ENVIRONMENT. MOVING MEANS BALM FOR THE SOUL.

How to live more consciously 3Photographer: Talkasia

It must not be daily sports. Only to spend more time outside and to breathe in fresh air sets us up and keeps us moreover fit. Especially, if one has to spend for some reasons much time in stuffy rooms anyway.

  • EAT AND SHOP  MORE CONSCIOUSLY

I like it to eat well and to wear nice clothes. It is even nicer to enjoy these small, but ordinary things with a clear conscience. However, daily purchasings can be a big challenge in our opportunistic society if one does not only likes to buy cheap, but also morally.

There is a lack of accessibility for the consumer to experience what really hides behind the misleading and simultaneously untransparent product information. A garment which is labelled with “made in Germany”, does not give any guarantee that it was truly produced in Germany – oftentimes, the product is manufactured in low-pay countries, like Bangladesh and is after that only sent for the final processing to Germany – and it can be already declared as a German product. Nonetheless, we could try to  pay attention to certain standards about which we can find information. There is a number of seals that can be found via the internet. An alternative are moreover secondhand shops or online websites (e.g. Ebay) where one can also buy used clothings from low-pay countries without supporting unhuman production methods.

The same also applies to foodstuffs. When buying products which are labelled with palm fat, one does not only support the extinction of our rain forests, including endangered species (e.g. orang-utans), but also human rights violations. Furthermore, one can also counteract factory farming without directly giving up meat, by e.g. going to small organic shops or a butcher, where one can collect detailed information about the origin of the product at first hand. Unfortunately, it is true that morally defensible articles are more expensive and that it is hard to afford them permanently. However, the world would be perhaps a little better, if we would all trash the general disenchantment with information and instead would carry more social responsibility.

  • ALWAYS PLAN SOMETHING TO LOOK FORWARD TO.

If the everyday stress seems to prevail slowly, it is finally time to plan something to look forward to. How about a small city trip? Escaping 3-4 days from the everyday life and immerse in a different lifeworld. For less money, a wellness day in the thermal bath, a cinema- or theatre visit or a bike trip with subsequent picnic in the green can be very relaxing. With small anticipations, everyday life is much easier to master!

Have you ever dealt with the topic of living more consciously? What suggestions do you have?

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51 Comments

Mira Devils 17. March 2015 at 10:55

Da hab ich doch jetzt echt den englischen Text gelesen. Wunderschöne Fotos und Tipps. Ich finde es gar nicht so leicht bewusster zu Leben, aber ich habe schon damit angefangen. Ich kaufe viele Bio Produkte, aber gerade bei der Kleidung finde ich es schwierig fair gehandelte zu kaufen, die noch erschwinglich sind.

xx

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471010 17. March 2015 at 11:06

Vielen Dank, Mira.
Ich denke, dass es bei Bioartikeln als auch bei Klamotten ziemlich schwierig ist, Informationen über Produktherkunft- und Herstellung herauszufinden. Man findet einfach kaum eindeutige Antworten zu diesen Themen.

Bewusster zu leben kann wirklich eine große Herausforderung sein. Aber schön zu hören, dass du auch damit angefangen hast. Hoffe, dass dir es weiterhin gelingen wird. :)

Liebe Grüße,
Mimi

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carrieslifestyle 17. March 2015 at 11:04

Toller Bericht! Danke!

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Anonym 17. March 2015 at 11:16

Hey Mimi,

that was a very inspiring post which is written wonderfully. You are a real talent when it comes to describing certain situations. Even if your articles are often a little long, they are worth to read it!!

I've tried to live more consciously over the last while, too. It's a big challenge to remind oneself everyday to enjoy life anew, especially if one is caught so much in the everyday stress.

Thank you so much for sharing this with us. Keep it up, girl!

Have a nice day!

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471010 17. March 2015 at 11:19

Aw, thank you so much. I'm really glad to hear that.
I know, I always try to cut the article length short, but then there is so much that comes to my mind.. ;)
The more it makes me happier to know, that there are people who still enjoy reading my articles.

Best wishes,
Mimi

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Tanya W. 17. March 2015 at 21:03

Take your time as you still young:). I was taking my time when I was in collage:) life becomes even more complicates when you gets older:). Been there and done that:). Wish you all the best:).

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Carmen Varner 17. March 2015 at 21:32

Your tip about living each day as you're traveling is so spot on. I love the whole idea behind seeing every day as an adventure waiting to be experienced rather than just living a mundane day-to-day existence.

:]

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471010 18. March 2015 at 8:27

Thank you, Carmen! Glad to hear that.

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Paola Lauretano 18. March 2015 at 19:55

So inspiring post, geat job!!!
Take your time girl!!!!
Kisses, Paola.

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Joanna Duffy 18. March 2015 at 20:36

What a well written and sincere post. I have always felt like I'm in a rush to stick to this idea "timeline" and it's just recently that I've learned to relax and enjoy my time. So important to do!

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471010 18. March 2015 at 21:38

You said it. Thank you! :)

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Tanya W. 19. March 2015 at 3:33

Wish you a lovely Thursdays!

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Zarrah Jane 19. March 2015 at 13:11

Great tips dear.
WE should live our life to the fullest
Forget the worries
XO

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Stella Scarlett Rose 19. March 2015 at 18:07

Das sind tolle Tipps!! Du hast wirklich recht, schön, dass du darüber schreibst. Toller Blog übrigens!

Liebst

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471010 19. March 2015 at 19:10

Danke, Stella. Freut mich, dass es dir gefallen hat. :)

Liebe Grüße

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Nilu Yuleena Thapa 20. March 2015 at 15:09

You're so pretty and this is a lovely post!
Xx,
Nilu Yuleena

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Ana Correia 21. March 2015 at 15:55

Hi beautiful,
I was just browsing through & stumbled upon your lovely blog – It looks gorgeous and it has interesting posts that I can relate to, I’ll come back for sure.

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Anne M 21. March 2015 at 18:05

I'd be honest. This was quite a long read but I like it. It's really insightful and thought provoking. In this digital age, we really should learn how to disconnect and actually live and interact with people personally.

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471010 23. March 2015 at 16:11

Thank you, Anne! I'm glad you enjoyed to read it.

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sonia de macedo 23. March 2015 at 1:46

Beautiful and your words are so true. Too many people are hard-wired to navigate through life on auto-pilot. Work, eat, sleep repeat. That's all they do and sadly one day they'll wake up and wonder how they got there? How they've come to be so much older and having accomplished not much of nothing. I had that moment when I was 25, for me I felt like I had just turned 19 not 25! And I couldn't recall what I'd done those years. I travelled, vaguely but that was all. I was on default and i was so unhappy. I've made it my mission to live each day to the fullest.

Sxx

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471010 23. March 2015 at 16:19

Hey Sonia,

I can totally relate to your thoughts. When I think about the last years, I am quite content about what I have experienced – but actually, there are only a few moments that I would call "unforgettable memories". Youth passes by so quickly. One experiences so much, but often one cannot even remember what happened the day before. That's such a pity. But at least, it helps us to realize that we should change our way of living somehow.
Thank you for your kind words! :)

Mimi

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Am2Pm Chic 23. March 2015 at 2:38

Beautiful words.
xoxo
Christy

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stylentonic Constantinos 23. March 2015 at 15:10

love this! kiss kiss

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Ivana Split 23. March 2015 at 18:00

wonderfully written post! Life is meant to be lived, not merely endured. It is always a bad idea to visualize our happiness in some distant goal ( when we get that job we want/find our ideal partner, etc…).

There is nothing wrong in working hard but we must also take time for ourselves…and for those that matter. Trying to be successful is alright but we must make sure there is at least some meaningful relationship in our life…not necessarily a romantic one, but we should treasure somebody, admire somebody and finally be close to somebody.

I think you're right…sometimes people hide behind excuses because they afraid to open up and form new relationship…and social media indeed sometimes makes people act anti-social!

thank you for sharing this, it really got me thinking!

http://modaodaradosti.blogspot.com/

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471010 23. March 2015 at 18:05

Thank you Ivana, I'm glad that you enjoyed reading this. I totally agree that we should always try to establish some meaningful relationships in our life. In the end, the people that surround us give our lives much more value.

Have a nice day! :)

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Maggie Dallospedale 23. March 2015 at 18:29

OMG
I love this post. You are so beautiful
Kisses

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Kelsey & Kenecha 23. March 2015 at 18:52

Beautiful photos!

Don't stress too much, just do what you can you are still young :D

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Lotte 23. March 2015 at 19:05

vielen dank <3

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Rowena @ rolala loves 24. March 2015 at 0:57

It certainly sounds like you've given this subject matter alot of thought and you've come up with some really wonderful ideas for living a mindful life. It can really be easy to forget to live meaningfully as we go through our daily grind but if we can willingly adopt a conscious mindset, I think it can only serve to enhance our lives and daily experience. Thanks for this important reminder Mimi!

Rowena @ rolala loves

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471010 24. March 2015 at 20:29

Thank you! I'm very glad to hear that. :)

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Kiss & Make-up 24. March 2015 at 10:02

What a wonderfully inspiring blog post! You are so right, it's of the utmost importance to take time out for your day to do the things you truly enjoy and it's oh-so important to savor every precious moment in life.

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471010 24. March 2015 at 20:30

Thank you!

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Fergzillas * 24. March 2015 at 14:08

this is such a great post! something that most people can take something from to help improve themselves a little. I totally agree, eating well and having a healthy lifestyle is so important. and living as if you are traveling is a really good point, when we travel we see more of the beauty in things because its different to where we live but if we were to search for the beauty in our surroundings more often we can be inspired!
fergzillas*
http://www.fergzillas.blogspot.co.uk

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471010 24. March 2015 at 20:30

Thank you, I'm glad that you enjoyed this article. :)

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Hoda Katebi 24. March 2015 at 18:18

This is such a beautiful post and I love how much time you put into reflecting! I totally agree with your words and I think it's so important to keep all of these in mind! I really resonate with b and g especially! There is really so much that we can learn from all the people around us–we should talk! Loved this!

<(') hoda | joojoo azad

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471010 24. March 2015 at 20:31

I'm glad that you enjoyed reading this article. Thank you for your kind words!

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Michelle Pan 26. March 2015 at 5:37

Some great advice here, thanks so much for this post! I love the idea of living everyday like you're traveling <3

— Michelle | MXP STYLE

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Susan Kwon 27. March 2015 at 18:27

This is a great post! Something that everyone goes through sometime in their life, being too busy, and becoming a zombie to work or school. Love it so much, that I know I will come back here to read it again when my life is on the downside.
Definition of life is to be happy, to live life to the fullest. again love your post and thanks for you wonderful advice.

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LoveT. 29. March 2015 at 20:02

Ein sehr schöner Beitrag! Vieles davon setze ich auch um ,oder versuche es zumindest ,grade was das einkaufen von Lebensmittel betrifft z.B. :)
Mehr Achtsamkeit ist ebenfalls etwas das den Tag schöner macht <3

Liebe Grüße!

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Mimi 5. February 2016 at 14:17

Definitiv. :)

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Roxanne Libatique 7. April 2015 at 5:34

Thank you so much for posting this! This actually speaks to me on a personal level because I've been feeling depressed and lost even before I graduated from college in October last year. :( I still don't have a job right now but I started volunteering in support websites after I graduated. It gave me the feeling of accomplishment but now that I started applying for jobs again, I still feel lost because I still don't know what career path to take. :/

I think I've also been having too much fun these past few weeks I already forgot about my responsibilities and obligations that's why this post really reminded me that yes, it's important to have fun and live our lives to the fullest but we also have to make time for our responsibilities. :) Thank you sooo much for these tips. xx

Roxanne ♥ | Awkward Turtle

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471010 14. April 2015 at 10:55

Hey Roxanne,

you're right. It's also important not to forget our obligations, even if we try to enjoy life. I think, this makes it even harder for us to let ourselves go for a while because we always keep those duties in our minds. It's a real challenge to have the right balance.
I don't think that you already have to decide what career path you must take. I guess that only through different (work) experiences, we can definitely say in the end which path or even paths we choose to go. But I can totally understand what you mean as we always have the pressure of expectations in our back.
But in the end, if we're satisfied with what we're doing, I think we did the right thing. :)

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JUNE PASKI 14. April 2015 at 7:09

Great article, Thank you for sharing it, your tips remind myself to be more survive!

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nikkistyle™ 17. May 2015 at 21:49

Well said. Fab reflective piece!

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Winscribbles 5. January 2016 at 4:22

quite true. I constantly remind myself to stay in the present moment. I was just talking to someone about that today, that I am having a hard time staying in the present mindset of enjoying the fact that I am graduating from a masters program. I am too busy thinking about what I have to do after I graduate, I am not sitting in the raw moment. It is quite a balance act in my opinion, between enjoying the moment but also not letting our lives out of grasp because heck, we still need to survive in this world full of responsibilities. :)

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Mimi 5. February 2016 at 14:14

That’s true. I also think it’s important to find a good balance between leisure time and obligations. Sometimes it’s hard to free our heads from all the duties and future plans. To live the present moments in our lives. But if we change our attitude towards life and integrate some beautiful routines in our everyday life, we could manage to live more happier. Maybe even for a longer while. :)

Best regards,
Mimi

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Lea 29. January 2016 at 20:44

oh, das ist ein sehr guter Post :) Gefällt mir wirklich super und du hast so recht mit dem was du schreibst… Das ist ein echtes Problem unserer Gesellschaft wie alle nur noch erfolgreich und schnell und gut sein wollen…
Liebe Grüße
Lea
LICHTREFLEXE
FACEBOOK

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Mimi 5. February 2016 at 14:16

Hallo Lea,

das freut mich, dass Dir der Artikel gefallen hat. Ja, umso mehr sollten wir darauf achten, im Alltag etwas achtsamer mit uns selbst, aber auch mit anderen umzugehen. :)

Liebe Grüße,
Mimi

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Blog Supporter 10. April 2016 at 5:26

I really love this life style like yours and this is what I and my family is dreaming about. Please accept my love to you and your life activities. Best Regards: Brian Keo

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