Even though these are already the last few days of January, it seems as if 2022 has gotten off to a slow start. Introvert that I am, I very much enjoy the winter hibernating slow-down mode, but many folks (due to weather, retrograde planets, post-holiday blues etc.) have been feeling frustrated, stuck, lost or simply unmotivated. The good news is that we have the Lunar New Year coming up next week (Feb. 1) so if you've had a rough January, you get a fresh do-over infused with Water Tiger energy in the weeks and months to come. Gong Xi Fa Zai!

When I wrote today's PGG back in 2014 the world was a very different place, one that certainly felt more carefree than it does today. But no matter what the external circumstances we find ourselves, remember that we all have the power to choose how we respond to them, and the ability to change our emotional state whenever we want.

This doesn't mean discounting serious mental health issues which should be acknowledged and attended to professionally, or ignoring the very real feelings in difficult situations we experience as I am always saying how one of the biggest problems in our culture is that everyone is walking around emotionally constipated! Be sure to get the help that you need, and process what comes up for you when it does (in an appropriate place and time), but don't get stuck in it; know that you can move the energy through you to feel better by crying, screaming into a pillow, taking a hot shower or going for a run.

But if you are just feeling off and want to "snap out of it", need a healthy dose of dopamine to get yourself out of the blahs, or shake off a challenging interaction, there are lots of simple things at our disposal like getting out in sunshine and fresh air (even if it's 19 degrees out!) and listening, dancing and/or singing to music that makes you feel good.

The recently departed Buddhist monk Thich Nhat Hanh said, "Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy." The simple act of smiling tells your brain to release feel-good hormones, which means you can do that for yourself literally any minute of the day even if you're not actually "feeling" it. This is a life hack that I use often because it is so effective.

And when you do smile and others see you - or you directly smile at them - you get to spread that feel-good vibe (even when you're not smiling, just squinting in the sun's glare wearing shades, which can look like smiling, people react just the same - that's how powerful it is!). Remember, as humans our emotions are contagious so try to be a super spreader of the good kind ;)

And then of course you always have your breath, but we generally take this for granted and don't optimize it. Being conscious and taking some deeper breaths throughout the day, and maybe even touching your hand to your heart while you do it is a great way to calm your nervous system, increase your O2 and connect to the parts of you that are always there for you no matter what - and that is something to be happy about.

Today's PGG Video of the Week is about the importance of feeling your feelings, because if you can't feel the bad, that means you can't feel the good either! This week's Instagram post is about how I use my smile and this bonus video is of me practicing what I preach. And today's PGG Vibe of the Week is Pharell's Happy, but one of the many videos of people from all over the world dancing along.

Lastly, THANK YOU for being here and for being part of my community! If any of my essays, coaching, talks, videos or posts have helped you along your career/life journey, here are a few ways you can show your appreciation and support my work:

And as always, please feel free to contact me with any comments about anything.

Big hug <3

P.S. Want to get unstuck and on track in your career and life in 2022 and beyond? Check out the website for my individual coaching services.