Happy International Woman’s day!

We’ve come a long way since women tried to emulate man behaviours and qualities to be accepted in the workforce. We now know that being fully the feminine women we are – is more than enough and men should support us on that as they appreciate authenticity too!
Now I ll share a few examples from my life that show gender inequality and I would like other women to do the same with the aim to raise awareness and try to adjust those everyday life experiences.
I was told that because I’m a woman I’m more emotional and therefore not enough logical to practice philosophy.
I was also told that it’s great to have ambitions about life and aspirations to do well but not too high ambitions because men might be intimidated by me.
I have been interrupted in a business meeting by a man that kept talking over me and wouldn’t let me finish my sentence.
All that stay in the past, and I had to live through those experiences to become the woman I’m proud to be today.
I’d love to read your gender inequality examples and be sure that the gender gap is not a conversation between women to discuss it’s a conversation that men should participate passionately too!
#internationalwomansday

3 false beliefs of Greek culture today

There is nothing surprising about Greek culture and the fact that it is failing us every single day for the last 70 years now. Our philosophy has leaded us to the results that we experience today. Of course it is easy to blame the government for everything that we experience and if you like to stay there and sink into misfortune please don’t count on me, I won’t be part of that sad journey with you.
On the other side if you are fed up with the situation and you want to change something I’m here for you. We need to understand where the Greek culture and system has failed us and work first with ourselves to redefine a few core beliefs.
There are lots of false beliefs within the Greek culture but I will talk about the 3 most important that influence the rest based to my opinion. The first one is the belief about love. Our philosophy about love is determined mainly by how our parents treat us and how our parents treat each other. Parents of course are far from perfect and especially when the culture encourages to marry and make children before the age of 25, it’s very easy to make mistakes due to the fact that the parents haven’t spend enough time identifying their own values and beliefs first in order to incorporate the right ones to the next generation.
The main rule that’s very often forgotten about love is that – you can’t love another human being deeply if you don’t love yourself first! If you don’t love and embrace yourself first – all you need is validation and because you can’t find it from within, you spend time looking for it through another person – that’s validation not true love.
The second main wrong philosophy embedded within the Greek culture and system is the short term gratification, the celebration! This is very well communicated from songs and other traditional saying ‘οτι φάμε κι οτι πιούμε’ meaning whatever we eat and drink. This short term focus has a huge effect to the society as a whole and it is the opposite of what our Ancient Greek ancestors taught us about fame after death or ‘υστεροφημία’ which was one of the core values of Ancient Greeks. Ancient Greeks thought about ‘ysterofimia’ very highly and that’s reflected in everything they created that we have until now as a result. The reason the short term philosophy doesn’t serve us well is because it doesn’t cultivate a culture of service to the society with long term value but a short term gratification from frivolous and unimportant factors of life. As a result we look for ways to cheat and earn short term applause rather than a long term value added approach to society and humanity as a whole like the Ancient Greeks did.
The final fatal false doing at present is the philosophy we have about money. The results are evident of this false philosophy and no matter how hard we try to blame the government for this situation it hurts us more and more every day. The only way to break this vicious circle is to take ownership of our current financial situation and change our philosophy about money. Nowadays there is so much emotion around money; and that’s the beginning of all the pain. All those negative emotions about money bring more negative events around money and it never ends. I do understand it because I had to deal with it too, especially when money is the source of pain for the people you love, emotions come up and its only natural. Although if we want to gain control back in that area of our life we need to study and understand the philosophy about money that self made people with plenty of money have.
You won’t go to a fat person and ask advice about how to get fit, would you? In the same manner, you can’t learn much about how to manage your money and how to increase your income by people that suffer the same from lack of it. Therefore, search for intelligent advice and read about people that have plenty, learn about the power of compounding and build a long term focus on that one too. The short term focus when we is comes to money won’t get you far either.
Finally, just to summarise short and neatly everything. The 3 false philosophies that Greek culture needs to rethink are the following:
  1. Love yourself first before being able to offer your love to others
  2. Long term value added to society rather than short term gratification by cheating
  3. Ownership of your financial situation + studying the set of beliefs of people that have plenty
Hope that was valuable for you, please let me know how I can help you further on this personal development journey and share with your network – it would mean the world to me! 🙂
Love & embrace yourself,
Ferenike

Valentine’s Day ❤️

Let me be straight with you here I’m not so interested in the whole Valentines commerce thing like dinners, flowers and chocolate cakes if the feelings are not true.
For me what ultimately matters is a loving lasting true relationship based on trust and authenticity. The pure kind of love that comes from within effortlessly, passionately and conquers everything – because when we talk about true love – everything else is secondary. The kind of love that fills every cell in your body with joy. The smooth loving touch, the spark in the eye, the helping hand, the ‘I would do whatever it takes to have you by my side’ type of love. We Greeks call it ‘agape’ (see the featured picture for definition).
I also believe that everyone can have the ‘agape’ relationship I’m describing above but not everyone will have it eventually. Due to the unpleasant experiences from the past – we build walls and very often we leave love outside of them. Other times we are not willing to find out what it takes  and execute it because we are too busy looking for validation and short term gratification. I see your nodding head here..

This is a lesson that took me too long to learn but now I know that I can never love another person truly if I don’t love myself deeply first. I won’t be able to see it, recognise it and own it – even if it happens. This is so bizarre, isn’t it? And just right there all the wisdom in the world will never be enough to understand & embrace ”yourself”. It is a process that everyone goes though on their own, successfully or half way though.

 

This following video just made my heart melt and I would like to share it with you. It is an elderly couple and the man sings to his dying wife a loving song with affectionate gestures and words. Please let me know your thoughts and comments below.

Women’s Period

It’s about time to break the taboo about women’s period. Talk about it shamelessly and educate men too – it’s 2017 crying out loud! It’s the most natural thing in the world since the existence of woman kind. Why period’s aren’t common knowledge yet?
Currently I’m loving the founder of thinx.com! Thinx is the brand new period underwear, I haven’t tried it yet but the reviews are outstanding. Take a look at this inspiring story.

Leadership redefined

Based on the title you probably guessed I will be talking about Donald Trump, the new president elect of the United States.. Just kidding!
I feel compelled to talk about leadership and redefine its meaning purely because of the wide range of leadership styles we witness everywhere in life, such as politics, business, universities, local communities and even local restaurants.
However I do think that there are five common denominators that distinguish a leader from the rest of the people. I will outline them on this article because essentially what I want to do is challenge your idea of leadership. I would like you to think what is your philosophy of leadership, when was that philosophy formed and whether is it up to date in 2016 in a world of information, social media and transparency.
A leader is not necessarily someone that has one million subscribers on youtube, it is not necessarily someone that leads a company or even leads a country. We all know those unfortunate examples a very obvious one is the current Prime Minister of Greece.
A leader is always someone that takes full responsibility for his life, he is never a victim of circumstances or other people’s decisions. For him it’s not about the struggle, his life doesn’t end there – it’s about endurance instead.
A leader knows very well that for a relationship to built and flourish there are two main ingredients: trust and integrity. That’s is true for all kinds of relationships, between a mom and a daughter, between colleagues and friends as well as between the government and the public. That’s the only way to build lasting relationships with allies, a leader knows very well.
People with low energy levels very rarely can inspire people forward. A leader has a tremendous amounts of energy that he accesses by serving a higher purpose, he has a sense of responsibility that comes from within. He always sets a new standard for himself therefore he doesn’t try to control people to perform better. People are inspired by the standards and values are embodied in him.
He is also got the ability to communicate a clear compelling picture of the future, resulting in people being pulled forward by the vision to give more of themselves, to take action and stand up. A true leader never creates followers, he creates more leaders!
To conclude with, a leader doesn’t have to have a position of power and influence, leader is also someone who leads a happy and prosperous family as well as someone that leads a life of joy and service to others.
Like & Share this article if you found it insightful please.
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My 1st encounter with philosophy

I remember very clearly during my secondary school year in Volos, Greece where I was born and grew up, the first class we did about philosophy, we got introduced to some of the greatest philosophers that have ever lived. Socrates, Plato and Aristotle started becoming my heroes at the age of 14. It was a completely new world that I felt so strongly and passionate to explore and learn. I felt that in a sense there is a place inside my soul that lives and breaths for examining ideas. 
It was during the same time I had a lot on my plate as I was a beach volleyball player. While I was playing at a national level, we were gathering every year from all cities around Greece to select the two girls that would represent Greece abroad for international competitions. My coach had very high expectations from me and he was disappointed when I wasn’t giving my 120% in every training session as he insisted. Those high expectations made me feel pressured and also developed my desire to win and prove to myself and everyone else my worth – that’s how I was measuring worth at the time!
To make a long story short my beach volleyball career lasted about 5 years. From the age of 14yrs up to 19yrs when I left my country for pastures new. Those 5 years were full of frustration due to the high expectations that people had from me since my performance didn’t always match. I played countless times on a national final tournament in Greece, only to find my team at the second place, I hear you say that’s not bad. Well. that depends on your effort and capabilities, as I was giving 120% of myself and I was solely dedicated to win, the second place felt like a failure, especially because it happened more than 7 times in a row.
Through all those failures and disappointments, not to mention all the existential questions that I was going through as a teenager – philosophy was always my anchor. Every time I was frustrated about my failures, I would sneak to the nearest bookstore in Volos and start reading about sports psychology or existentialism as I was trying to find strong enough reasons to continue fight through all the struggles and pain of failure I was experiencing. Quitting was never an option for me, I was going to hit my goals first no matter what- then maybe quit.
And yes the day came – I hit my goal of getting the first place at a national championship in Greece twice in 2006, right after that my beach volleyball career ended and my priorities shifted forever. I had learned what I needed to learn and I was ready to move forward. However, I knew one thing, that I’m completely open to a new level of growth and philosophy will help me through whatever the level of the challenge maybe..
To be continued..
p.s. It feels very cathartic to share pieces of my soul with you here, thank you for reading and please share your thoughts.
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An educated (wo)man

Nowadays the hype around education is tremendous. There is a huge conversation taking place, numerous educational start ups and long conversation about disrupting the educational system. It’s vital to create a new educational system that would more effectively accommodate the needs of the workforce & marketplace in the society we live in 2016.
Gary Vaynerchuk– the entrepreneurs in the audience will be already familiar with him. He very often talks about how the educational system is failing entrepreneurs everyday due to the fact that it is simply not designed for entrepreneurs. There is clearly a need to redefine what education is and who is an educated man.
I searched and searched everywhere to find a clear and concise definition of an educated man. Is maybe someone that has got a college degree? Or maybe a Phd? Someone that graduated with cum laude? Okay. Any other guesses? Education is not just to understand and master an academic or professional field. For example, if someone is a lawyer, is he educated if he has all the qualifications and skills of a lawyer but has no compassion for elderly people? Emotional and ethical education is even more important than skill sets.
The best definition of an educated man I could possibly imagine I found by Napoleon Hill. Napoleon Hill for those who haven’t heard about him, is an American author who dedicated 24 years of his life studying the most successful people and their formula for success. His initiative was funded by Andrew Carnegie one of the most powerful industrialist and philanthropist at the time. I found the finest definition of an educated man in his book ‘Think and grow rich’ (1937).
“An educated man is not, necessarily, one who has an abundance of general or specialised knowledge. An educated man is one who has so developed the faculties of his mind that he may acquire ANYTHING he wants, or its equivalent, without violating the rights of others”- Napoleon Hill
Therefore, anyone would benefit from learning about the mind faculties because that’s the key to design the best version of yourself and thus a fulfilling life full of joy! I know it sounds exciting, so stick around and we will walk the personal growth path together. Hand in hand if you wish.
Cheers to that X
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