„You inspire me so much!“
Reading those words,
still half asleep.
Getting up before the sun,
so worth it,
for these letters.
it’s an odd thing.
Giving it to others,
without having it,
As saying goodbye to the moon
and hello to the sun.
no one ever has it.
Nothing to give or take,
it’s all around us.
Dass wir alle in ein Netz von Vorurteilen hineingeboren werden, ist denke ich kein Geheimnis. Von der Farbe unserer Haut, über die vier Wänden in denen wir leben, zu der Schule die wir besuchen, bis hin zu dem Beruf den wir ausüben. Alles kann irgendwie in irgendeine Schublade gesteckt werden. Man schließt von einer Eigenschaft auf die nächste und voilá, man meint die ganze Person zu kennen. Ich denke, dass diese Schlussfolgerungen Menschen dabei helfen, sich sicher zu fühlen. Wenn jeder in ein Muster passt, dann ist die Gesellschaft aufgeräumt, ordentlich. Die Wahrheit ist aber, dass die wenigsten einfach so in eine Ecke gedrückt werden können.
Anlass dieses Posts und Themas ist eine Unterhaltung, die ich im vergangenen Wochenende mit einer Teilnehmerin des Yogaworkshops hatte, den ich auch besucht habe. Bei der Frage, wie oft und wo ich unterrichte, ist klar geworden, dass ich pro Woche recht viele Kurse leite. Die Worte „Dann machst du das ja schon fast hauptberuflich?“ von ihr waren absolut nett und euphorisch gemeint, während mich meine Antwort darauf, seitdem nicht mehr loslässt. „Ja stimmt, ich mache das quasi hauptberuflich. Aber ich studiere auch noch!“ Sofort bin ich vor mir selbst etwas erschrocken. Ich bin hauptberuflich Yogalehrerin. Ich will hauptberuflich auch Yogalehrerin sein. Was ist es, das mich dazu bringt, mein Studium erwähnen zu müssen? Das eine hat mit dem anderen nichts zu tun. Es ist als bräuchte ich eine Legitimation, um sagen zu dürfen, dass Yoga zu unterrichten, mein Beruf ist. Fast so, als ob diese Tätigkeit nicht gut genug wäre. Was ist es, dass wir in der heutigen Gesellschaft immer alles werten müssen? Dass es für alles klare Linien und Grenzen geben muss? Ich habe mich dann gefragt, ab wann man etwas hauptberuflich ausübt. Ist es gemessen an dem Arbeitsaufwand? Oder daran, wie viel man dadurch verdient? Warum kann man es nicht an dem Herzblut messen, das man in bestimmte Dinge steckt? Und wieso muss Freizeit und Beruf immer so klar getrennt sein? Ich denke das rührt daher, dass die meisten Menschen keinen Spaß an ihrem Job haben. Sie fühlen sich gezwungen, Dinge zu tun, die sie in ihrer Freizeit nie tun würden. Vielleicht liegt darin der große Error. Wie wäre es damit, sich im wahrsten Sinne des Wortes, sein Hobby zum Beruf zu machen? Die Dinge zu finden, die einem Spaß machen und das als Grundlage dafür zu nehmen, womit man seinen Lebensunterhalt verdient? Viel zu viele Menschen wissen gar nicht, was ihnen Freude bereitet, weil sie viel zu beschäftigt damit sind, sich unglücklich zu arbeiten. So etwas war für mich nie eine Option. Ich sehe diese Verfahrenheit viel zu deutlich, als dass ich mich ihr selbst hingeben würde.
Am allermeisten muss ich mich hier wohl aber selbst an die Nase nehmen. Die Tatsache, dass ich mich diesen Vorurteilen, Normen und Ansprüchen derart hingebe, zeigt mir, dass ich trotz meines Bewusstseins dem gegenüber, immer noch ein kleiner Zacken in den Rädern der Gesellschaft bin. Also lasst uns das hiermit ändern: Ich bin Yogalehrerin. Das ist mein Beruf. Mein Haupt- und einziger Beruf. Das macht mich nicht besser, schlechter, attraktiver, unattraktiver, schlauer, dümmer, verrückter oder normaler. Das macht mich nichts, außer glücklich.
Ich verabschiede mich mit einem meiner Lieblingszitate von Julia Engelmann:
„Lasst uns Dinge tun weil wir können und nicht müssen.“
Disclaimer: I’m neither a doctor, nor a nutritionist. I have no idea about how much protein, carbs or stardust a human should consume in a day. In ten years there might be studies about how the amounts of matcha I’m drinking could kill me and I would have had no clue.
One more thing: I’m a spoiled brat. My grandmom cooked my food all my life. It’s incredible how yummy her meals are and I’m super jealous of that skill. Also, I suck at cooking. No, I’m not being humble here, I suck at cooking, big time.
Now, Pari, what is this all about?
I want to tell you a little bit about my personal eating story.
I grew up in a household, where eating meat and dairy was totally normal, while engraving a huge love for all animals into our hearts too.
When I was about nine years old, I remember watching a documentary on how cows are killed, before we can eat them. At the end of that documentary, I was devastated and wrote down a plan on this little piece of paper “When I grow up, I am going to be a vegetarian and a veterinary doctor”. I told my grandmom all about it, hide the paper in the depth of my bedroom and sort of forgot about it. Two years later, I slowly started to be grossed out by the blood that would come out of a steak, when eating it at my dad’s restaurant. I stopped eating red meat and just had chicken and turkey, until about 1.5 years afterwards, on a sunday, the fourth of April (I know this, because it was the Easter sunday of that year), my mom made bread. Not any kind of bread, but this dish, where you bake a whole piece of ham in bread dough. I had one slice of that dish, got up from the table and announced “From now on I’m a vegetarian!” – being dramatic as always. Most of my family smiled and didn’t really believe me. Fast forward to almost nine years later, today, they know I was for real. I haven’t touched any kind of meat since then. I also don’t eat fish. It’s easy, I don’t eat anything that was alive once.
I am a strict vegetarian, have been since the day I started. I’m the type of person that does everything, or nothing. Since I live with meat eaters, I would just pick out the actual meat and still eat the sauce, for example. It worked for me. I was very happy with being a vegetarian that way and kept saying “I don’t know if I’ll ever eat meat again, but being vegan is crazy, I couldn’t do it.”. Jokes on me. About two years ago now, something changed. On social media, I kept gravitating toward accounts that put up vegan recipes. In supermarkets, I would try to find vegan alternatives to dairy products and think about dishes that could be vegan. I became a vegetarian because I love animals too much to eat them. I don’t see a difference between a dog and a cow. Looking into veganism more and more, I feel the urge to make more plant based choices. I won’t go into the details of why I think, not eating animal products is a good thing. It just feels right in my heart and I want to listen to that.
Bottom-line: I’m a wannabe vegan now. If I was more devoted, I would be a strict vegan. But I have to admit, that I’m mostly too lazy to pre-cook meals to take with me on the go, or always make every dish from scratch in the first place. I love the idea of living a plant based life and am trying not to be too hard on myself. Making more conscious choices is progress. Baby steps still make you move forward.
Why am I writing all of this? As you have grasped by now, I’m lacking the cooking skills, since I was lucky enough to be treated to awesome meals all day, every day. With me trying to eat more plant based, my grandmom went on a strike and doesn’t enjoy cooking for me any longer, which forces me to turn on survival mode and improve my kitchen knowledge. I have a couple of recipes that I love and keep rotating, but want to expand (a lot). For example, saturday’s lunch was a total fail, while sunday’s dinner was a hit. It gave me the idea of a new Hashtag – #parisophieeats.
I want to take you along on my journey. Share recipes, that some of you might enjoy too. Also share the things that didn’t work out for me. As I’m sharing parts of my life here, I thought, I might as well share this bit too. I want to show the process of a real life person. I don’t glamorize veganism. I think it’s freaking hard, in a world where the standard diet always contains some kind of animal product, but let’s give it a shot. And honestly, maybe this isn’t just about being vegan. Maybe this is about me learning to cook. I might share simple vegetarian meals too, because nothing is just black or white, good or bad.
So, just letting you know, that I’m still eating solid food and not living off of light and love, even though that would be awesome.
Cheers to coconut milk and hummus,
PS.: This picture was taken in Thailand, because my food never looks this intriguing. Gonna have to change that.
The single best advice you could give someone, in any situation, is to just be themselves.
The single shittiest advice you could give someone, in any situation, is to just be themselves.
Let me elaborate.
In anything you want to achieve in your life, the key is, to be authentic. The only way to be authentic, is to be yourself.
If you want to build a business, chances are, there is already someone, something out there, that’s very similar to what you plan on doing. Why would people want to support your business and not the other ones that are already out there? Because they want to support you. Because they like you and the way you do things.
You’re going on a first date. Maybe someone introduced you two to each other, you’ve been talking, but haven’t met in real life yet. What is the thing that will make you feel attracted to the other person? It’s them being them. The vibe they give off, the way they speak, move, their moral approach – it’s them.
Let’s say you’re going to a job interview and there is another person, that has the exact same qualifications you have. How is the interviewer going to choose? Based on sympathy, character.
Like, why do your friends like you and not the next person? Because of all the things that make you, you.
You get the point.
In anything you want to achieve in your life, the key is to be authentic. The only way to be authentic is to be yourself.
But how am I myself? Who even is that person? Who am I?
Before even being able to be yourself, you have to find out who you are. In order to find out who you are, you have to find out who you’re not. You have to try different things, work different jobs, meet different people. Know what you want and what you don’t want. You have to get to know yourself. Understand your thoughts, your emotions and your body.
And then, once you think you’ve grasped what you’re all about – curveball – something happens and you react completely different to how you thought you would. Or you have an amazing conversation with someone who believes in things, so different to what you believe in and that shakes your whole point of view. We’re never done becoming ourselves. Which is a part of us too. So however easy it sounds, to “just be yourself” it takes a lot of work to get to the point where, being you, actually is easy.
Until then, trust your intuition. Listen to your gut feeling. Deep in your core, you know who you are. You know what you want.
Just be yourself.
Whoever that might be.
This text was written while I actually wanted to come up with a caption for an Instagram post. I started to say all the things I had to say and all of a sudden it was way too long just for a caption. It was meant for the same picture that I’m posting with this blogpost and it goes like this:
In the picture above, I was in a really good space. I had been on a magical thai island for over two months, doing nothing but yoga, meditations, eating vegan food, soul talks with the best people and soaking up the highest vibes. Transitioning back into the day-to-day-life wasn’t the easiest thing for me. Now, I’ve been home for almost three months and am just beginning to feel like I’m fully arriving.
This month I started teaching yoga. It’s the coolest thing ever and I truly enjoy every second of it. Giving it all I know. Here’s the thing with giving though: You cannot pour from an empty cup. You can – on the other hand – pour from a half-filled cup. Leaving you with nearly nothing and others with way more than they had before. Not the healthiest of habits.
There is this quote that I’ve been loving:
“Be so full, that even if they take and take and take, you’re still overflowing.”
I’ve come to understand, that in order to give, while maintaining your own physical and mental health, you need to take care of yourself first. Your cup not only needs to be full, but actually overflowing. I’m a very feely person and have already noticed my energy draining out of me, as I keep on giving. A big part of my job now, is giving. Giving knowledge, giving energy, giving words and giving time. Giving emotions. To be able to keep on doing that, it takes self care. It’s a big part of my job too. It is, in fact, the very foundation of it all. I don’t have to feel bad for canceling appointments, not picking up calls, turning off my phone and needing space. No one has to. Frankly, we all should do these things. We all should prioritize ourselves first.
I’m very lucky in the sense that, I know myself, very well. I know how my body feels in certain situations. I know the physical reaction to mental discomfort. I feel those subtle differences as they arise, before they can evolve into something major. But this is only step one. The next step is to not only acknowledge it, notice it, but to actually honor it. Our bodies are whispering to us and we should listen to those whispers, before they turn into screams. Step three is doing something. Or rather, doing nothing. Standing still and being there for yourself. Sometimes, doing nothing, is all you need to do. Other times, doing something, like moving your body, going outside, is what your soul needs. Learn to know how it feels in your body, listen to it and act on it. A magical recipe for a healthy life.
Here’s to self care.
„Es ist was es ist und es ist gut, so wie es ist.“
Wer letzte Woche bei einer meiner Yoga Klassen dabei war, wird diesen Satz schon gehört haben. Es ist, als wäre er mein Wochenmantra gewesen. Während dem Unterrichten einer Einheit ist es einfach so herausgekommen. Ich habe davon gesprochen, die eigenen Gedanken, den körperlichen Zustand, das Leben nicht zu verurteilen, sondern einfach nur zu fühlen und dann war der Satz schon gesagt.
Wie oft versuchen wir Worte, Beschreibungen, Schubladen oder Muster für etwas zu finden? Meiner Meinung nach, viel zu oft. Was aber haben all diese Dinge gemeinsam? Sie sind Erfindungen. Man made. Wenn wir auf die Welt kommen, können wir nicht sprechen, wir wissen nicht, wie man etwas beschreibt oder Muster findet. Was wir jedoch können, ist fühlen. Gefühle sind angeboren, nicht erlernt oder antrainiert. Was dann passiert, ist, diese Gefühle in Worte fassen zu wollen, um sich verständlich zu machen. Sie zu beschreiben, in eine Schublade zu stecken und Muster in ihrem Auftreten zu finden. Wie wäre es aber mal damit, einfach nur zu fühlen? Zu spüren, wie sich die eigenen Gedanken anfühlen. Wie sich der eigene Körper anfühlt. Manchmal muss man sich nicht verständlich machen, sondern sich nur selbst verstehen. Worte können Gefühle nicht beschreiben. Frägt man fünf verschiedene Leute, das Gefühl „Liebe“ zu beschreiben und wird man fünf vollkommen verschiedene Definitionen bekommen. Das gleiche gilt für alle andere Emotionen auch. Worte können die feinen, entscheidenden Nuancen nicht beschreiben. Gefühle sind nicht zum Anfassen, sondern zum Spüren gedacht.
Wenn wir die Gefühle, die wir spüren, jedoch nicht mögen, verurteilen wir sie. Und uns gleich mit dazu. In meinem „Tech detox“-Blogpost habe ich das bereits kurz angeschnitten, aber ich habe für mich herausgefunden, dass der einzige Weg negative Emotionen zu verarbeiten ist, sie vollkommen zu fühlen. Nicht darin versinken, aber sie zulassen. The only way out is through.
Mensch-sein bedeutet nun mal ein auf und ab der Gefühle. Eine Achterbahn der Emotionen. Sonst wäre es doch auch langweilig. Wer will schon ein monotones Leben? Ich bin bekannt dafür, sehr hohe Höhen und sehr tiefe Tiefen zu erleben und es ist etwas, wofür ich sehr dankbar bin. Man muss das Leben spüren, um es zu leben. Alles gehört dazu. Genau so, soll es sein.
„Es ist was es ist und es ist gut, so wie es ist.“
“A home without a dog is just a house.”
As you might have grasped by now, this post is about my puppy, Roya. First of all, I have to say that I grew up around all kinds of animals. We always had dogs and cats. To be honest, it was only a matter of time for me to adopt my own dog. In this post I will give you an overview of my experience so far, make your heart jump because of the cute pictures and talk about the process of bonding with a pet.
For starters, I will give you a run-down of how it all happened. A couple of incidents lead to the seed of getting a puppy, being planted in my head. One of them was this girl, that I started to chat with while hiking during summer. She had her dog with her and told me about her experience as a dog mom. In that moment I started imagining myself going on hikes with a puppy by my side. Then, shortly before leaving for Thailand, I told my family that I’ll start looking for a dog once I’m home again. Even though I don’t think they took it seriously, I did, with the only difference of looking while I was still in Thailand. I didn’t plan for it to work out that way, but a friend on my Facebook shared a post of a dog rescue organization “Dogship Bayern”. I didn’t like the dog she had shared, but for some reason (well, the reason was me being obsessed with animals and loving to look at puppy pictures) I clicked on the organization’s page and voilà, there she was. This cute little, beige colored baby. Her chocolate nose and story-telling eyes caught my attention right away. Before I could really think about it, I had already sent a message to the lady that runs the page, asking for an appointment to talk to her over the phone. One thing led to another and I agreed on picking the dog up six days after I would come back to Austria.
About Roya: She was found on the streets of Romania when she was three to four months old. By now she officially is seven months old, but we think she might be a couple months older. I was told that she was “a true Romanian street mix” when it comes to her breed. She had 10,9kg and her shoulder height was 34cm. After two months of living with us, she weighs 16,6kg and grew 14cm, adding up to her being 48cm shoulder height now. The videos I got of her showed that she was a rascal, but also very cuddly. Due to her living in a cage, without much daylight and no grass, whatsoever, she was super shy and scared of everything at first. Male voices and loud shoes were the biggest issues. Since I want her to be my sidekick and come everywhere with me, I immediately started to take classes with a dog trainer. We are half way through our program and the progress she has made already, is great. Roya loves our other dogs and wants to play all day, every day. Same goes for our cats, except the cats are afraid of this huge, barking creature running towards them, so they escape. Going anywhere with her is not a problem at all, since she behaves very well, but at home she is a naughty puppy (stealing food, socks etc).
Before I went to see Roya for the first time, everyone told me that I would just “know” if she was my dog, as soon as I’d meet her, but also, that I would have to be 100% sure, because I’d have to love her for the next 15 years. That put a lot of pressure on me. While it was obvious, that I would take her home with me, I was constantly questioning whether what I was feeling was “knowing” or not. Looking back now, I wouldn’t recommend getting a dog so soon after coming home from such a life changing trip as doing a yoga teacher training, simply because you need time to adapt back into day to day life yourself first. That being said, I’m more than happy having done just that. She slowly made her way into my heart and now I can’t even believe how obsessed I am with her. Over the last weekend, I left her at home over night (two nights, actually) for the very first time and I think I suffered more than she did. Adopting her was the best decision ever and now I can’t even imagine having all the space in my bed for myself anymore (yes, she sleeps in my bed).
Before leaving you with the cutest picture of the sight I wake up to every morning, I want to address, that getting a dog is a shitload of work.
You need to walk your dog. No matter if it rains or snows or the sun is shining. And when you don’t walk them, you will feel the biggest guilt and won’t even enjoy watching Netflix. You are responsible for another life. Before getting Roya I always kind of smiled at people calling their pets “babies” or them “being their mom”, but now I totally get it and absolutely feel the same way. They can’t open their food by themselves, they can’t just go to the restroom when they need to pee, they need you. Don’t underestimate the effort that goes into keeping another living being alive.
Also, they will make you smile uncountable times a day and melt your heart with those adorable puppy eyes.
Adopt, don’t shop.
Pari and Roya
Shocker: Social Media is addictive.
Breaking news, right? We all know it, it’s that eye-roll-moment when someone tells you about the bad side effects digital devices have and still, we’re not the ones effected by it. The way we use our phones is normal. Other people might have these problems, but I don’t.
Exactly, that’s what I thought too. Then I found myself laying on the sofa on December 23rd, watching some series in the TV, frantically checking my phone for… Well, for what actually? I’d heard about people deleting social media off their phones for the holiday period, but I knew that wasn’t for me. Re-downloading would be too easy. My mind was scattered and when I finally figured out that it was due to all these things I saw on various apps, all the messages I answered, all the things I wanted to do, I realized that I needed a time out.
After I posted my blogpost on the 24th, I turned my phone and laptop off completely and put them in a drawer, underneath a sweater, so I wouldn’t even see them. The plan was to leave it there until the 27th around noon, but once that time rolled around, I wasn’t ready to look down at that metal thing yet, which is why I extended my abstinence for another day. Of course, I was excited to get the freedom of talking to anyone at any time back, but I’ve also learned a lot about my behavior. Here’s what I got:
- I got used to scrolling away my emotions. This is the main thing I’ve realized. When I’m anxious/sad/confused/lonely, I start looking at my phone, scrolling through social media. There are new things happening all the time, which distracts me to the point where I forget about my feelings. That’s cool and all, until you learn to handle all your emotions that way. Scrolling will only push them away, suppress them, but you’re not dealing with them properly. I’ve learned that the only way out is through.
- I’m a control freak. Not in the sense that I have the urge to control this whole planet, but I do like to be in charge of plans that involve my personal life. That became obvious when I asked my brother to call our dad and ask him something and then wanted to ask him every five seconds, if he’d already called. I’m the type of person that thinks “If you want something done, you better do it yourself.”. I already let go of a big part of my perfectionism, but apparently, a part of it is still very alive.
- I don’t owe anything to anyone. Often times I check my phone because I know, that that certain person had a job interview and wanted to tell me how it went afterwards. The next person went on a date and the third one simply likes to reach out around that time of day. But I don’t need to be reachable unless I want to be. The message is still going to be there an hour later. You can’t pour from an empty cup. In order to be there for others, you have to be there for yourself first.
Despite all the things I’ve mentioned above, I am grateful to live in a time where the whole world is accessible by just a few clicks. The fact that I can be in touch with all my friends, all over the place fills me with happiness. It’s all about moderation. I enjoy using my phone and social media as long as I’m using it consciously and am not totally absorbed by it. Life is in the things you can touch, feel, taste, smell, hear, see. It’s the whole 4D experience. Phones, social media apps are just tools to share that experience. Go out today and make use of those senses you were gifted.
See you in real life!
New Year’s resolutions.
I am not a big fan of the traditional ones. I am, however, a fan of kinky, fun, different ones.
Two years ago, Rachel Brathen (yoga_girl on Instagram) wrote this caption underneath one of her posts and I’ve had it printed out in my little calendar ever since:
“God lives in wild, reckless abandon of structure. Shake things up. Say yes when you normally say no. Break all the rules. Follow your intuition. Travel. Talk to strangers. Laugh out loud. Dance like you don’t give a fuck. Yell at the ocean. Hug a tree. Spend all your money. Cry when you feel like it. Be naked more. Eat whatever the hell you want. Quit your job. Start a new one. Speak your mind. Fall in love. Have your heart broken. Fall in love again.
Live your life for you! You were born a free spirit. Act like it.”
I absolutely love this. As we all might know, I don’t really like to live a very stereotypical life, so shaking things up is right up my alley. Do whatever you want. Be whoever you want. Live wherever you want.
You have no idea what this new year – this life – is going to bring anyway, so how about you just enjoy? Be in it to win it. And love yourself for doing so. Even through your biggest fuck up, love yourself for trying. Through your biggest accomplishment, love yourself even more, knowing you were the one who made it happen.
The one thing you cannot change is the fact, that you have to be with yourself forever. Why not utterly fall in love with yourself then? Let’s make this our goal: Loving ourselves.
Big kiss, I’ll see you on the other side.
I want all the kids around the world to smile, even if it’s just for a split-second.
I want all the teens to enjoy their time without thinking about what they will post on social media.
I want all the adults to be able to relax and stop stressing out.
I want all the old people to have a cozy home they can spend their christmas at.
I want all the creatures of this planet to feel safe and fearless this holiday season.
I want love and light for the people that feel like they are trapped in darkness.
I want kindness to be spread around those who project their own pain onto the world.
I want more people to eat less meat.
I want less plastic to be used by most people.
I want more countries have less war.
I want less ignorance from more people.
I want more love and less hate.
I want less to be more.
I want all my loved ones to be healthy, in order for them to be happy.
I want to be able to beam myself to every place, in order to be with all my soul people whenever I want to.
I want California’s avocados and Thailand’s dragon fruits.
I want my mom’s ability to find comfort in chaos and my grandma’s cooking skills.
I want my dog to behave and the cats to eat downstairs again.
I want to like winter more and it to be spring soon.
Please let my wishes come true.
PS.: We usually get our presents from the Christkind, but I thought you could help each other out.