• Reflection

    Prioritize yourself

    The following text is inspired by a conversation with a friend. My friend had found herself never prioritizing her own needs. She always prioritized work, family and friends before herself. She said “…I just want to feel good. I just want to have the strength to live…” This text is summarizing some of my thoughts regarding this issue. I hope it can help others in similar situations.

    Endless comparison

    In this world we live in it is very easy to compare your own life with the life of others. You can compare with almost 8 billion people on this earth and there will always be someone who is in a situation more extreme than yours. Someone will be more successful, more kind or going through bigger trauma than you. Better or worse, this does not mean that your abilities are not amazing, or that who you are is not enough, or that your emotions are not real.

    Photo: Michel Filinis

    When did money become more important than our own existence?

    Social status and profit?

    I have met so many people who suffer because they see this and prioritize other things but themselves. Very often they prioritize social status, projects and profit over their mental and physical wellbeing and health. They simply value popularity, progress and money higher than their own existence. When did money become more important than our own existence?

    What do you want?

    Many people also prioritize others before themselves which is natural, and a good thing if they are also being able to care for themselves. For the moment it might be easier to focus on the need of others and put their own needs aside, instead of trying to listen and understand their own emotions.

    Listen to your inside. What do you need?

    Stop comparing with the rest of the world and stop being ashamed of your own needs. To prioritize and be kind to yourself is not equal to harming and being rude to others. Listen to your inside. What do you want? What do you need? Stay in contact with your spirit and your body. You are the main character in your own life and you are the one responsible for it. Prioritize yourself and your wellbeing. Accept what you are and who you are. Accept yourself without comparison.

    Photo: Michel Filinis
    An art

    It is an art to prioritize yourself, especially when it is so easy to compare with others and be judged by the others through the eyes of expectations from society. Prioritizing yourself is considered selfish and is not always associated with something positive. It is not the most simple and best solution for everyone around you in all situations, but it is the best solution in the long run for everyone. After prioritizing yourself and your wellbeing it is easier to help others fully.

    You are enough

    Be aware of who you are and what your needs are. Everyone has different issues to work with and different needs. The first step is to close your eyes, breathe, and listen to yourself, your inner self. Remember, you are good enough just as you are, without any performance.
    Get to know yourself. Be patient.

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-07-09
    Athens, Greece

  • Reflection

    Harmonious or obsessive passion?

    Recently I read a text that one of my best friends sent to me. The text is about passion and the two different kinds of it. In the text they call it harmonious passion and obsessive passion. It made me stop and think.

    Expectations from yourself and people around can easily turn the harmonious passion to something obsessive and destructive.

    From within

    I believe that through a true passion that comes from within one can achieve extraordinary and amazing things. At the same time there is a risk that the passion develops to an obsessive passion with a greed for the best performances and results. An innocent passion from the heart can easily develop to an obsession, especially when the honest passion leads to the great results by nature. This can be confusing, to know where the limit is. To understand the signs. The limit between love and obsession. Expectations from yourself and people around you can easily turn the harmonious passion to something destructive.

    Remember the origin

    I believe this is common in many sports and especially within freediving. I have met and heard about athletes who totally lost their passion for freediving because they focused to hard on the results. I have met several athletes who are unkind to themselves. They are unkind since they focus on freediving through external expectations in a result oriented perspective. These athletes have lost their passion through their passion and their extraordinary capacity that comes with it. It is important to always remember why you started. Always remind yourself of the origin. Always have fun.

    Passion have to come from within, not from the obsession of external results.

    Photo: Michel Filinis
    Way of thinking

    I always say, that to achieve good results focus must be on the process and not the result itself. With that way of thinking there is nothing called failure, only lesson if you prefer to put it that way. With the wanted performance deep in your mind the way of living to achieve what you want will come naturally. Passion have to come from within, not from the obsession of external results.

    Zero points, valuable experience

    In the last competition I joined, my way of thinking was out of balance. I lost the connection to the love for my passion and I focused on a certain result. In my dive I was disconnected to my “diving mode” since my mind was focused on the result. When in “diving mode” my mind and whole body is fully connected in a deeper consciousness. The communication with the whole body tells me when to end my dive at the right time. This, to be able to do my surface protocol with control so that the judges can show me a white card without doubts. This time, I was disconnected. My mind was disconnected from my body. Communication didn’t work. I blocked the communication with an obsession for a long dive. A too long dive. I wanted the result so bad that in the end, the dive resulted in zero points. On the other hand, the dive gave me a thousand points in experience and an important lesson. This performance gave me so many, extremely valuable knowledge. Better to learn the lesson now than later, since I am preparing myself for a season of new disciplines. Deep diving season approaches and all that comes with it.

    Live & achieve

    Let the achievements be the result on your way of living your passion in a harmonious way. Never let your passion break you down. If you accept the fact that great results will come with the process, progress will come, and there is nothing called failure. Follow the journey, welcome and embrace all results.

    Photo: Michel Filinis

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-06-15
    Gothenburg, Sweden

  • Reflection

    Closer to life

    When taking time to just be, the amazing world will expose everything in this extraordinary existence of life and all parts in it. From the biggest forests, mountains and oceans to the smallest elements of us there is vibrating life clamoring for attention.

    Listen

    The clamoring is obvious when taking the time to use and listen to all senses. When taking time to listen, see, smell, taste and feel, the ability to perceive even the smallest movement in this life will develop. The ability will develop and proliferate. New unexpected thoughts and sensations will come to your mind and body.

    Movements of life

    One day I saw a pigeon sitting on the bannister of the balcony with the back towards me. The pigeon was sitting there so still and quiet and I approached slowly it to come closer and capture the moment. When standing there one meter from this other being I realized I was so close I could see the small movements of its body. I could see the pigeon taking its breaths. The soft feathers on its back were moving away and towards each other in a repetitive way. I was so close I could see the essential movements of life in the body of this other living being. The small but so important movements of life.

    Through breathing

    To be able to come close enough to see, hear or even feel someone breathe is something special. There is so much someone’s breath can tell if it’s fast or slow, regular or irregular, shallow or deep or no breath at all. Breathing connects us. It connects all living beings. We breathe because we live, we live because we breathe. Through breath we bring life to others and they bring life to us.

    From the inside

    To see these movements and having time to reflect about something as basic as breathing, I feel that I come closer to life. I experience life with my inside, through my senses. I beleive an extreme focus on the outside inhibits our ability to come closer to life. The focus on the outside makes us sick and it consumes us slowly until we don’t know who we are. We don’t know who we are except from our apparition as a reflection in the mirror. Come closer to life and live. Experience your life with your inside. With your heart. Through all of your senses.

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-05-04
    Tranås, Sweden

  • Reflection

    Listen & Live

    Everywhere nature is so strikingly beautiful, full of life and welcoming love. There are innumerable places to acquaint, bays to enjoy, rocks to climb and depths to transcend.

    The inner voice

    The waters of Greece invite you to go deep, develop and explore not only the world around you but also your inner self. The ability to move in three dimensions of space arouses the feeling of being in another world. Less physical gravity somehow releases the logical thinking mind and the dampen isolating sounds invite you to come closer and listen to the voice inside you as the water embraces your whole body. Liberty is the word. Liberty is the freedom of letting go and release your self physically and mentally.

    Photo: Michel Filinis
    Embrace life

    Walking around the ruins of ancient Greece awakens my mind and reminds me that the time on earth is precious. The time as a human on earth is precious and it is our obligation to welcome and embrace what is given to us. We have to listen and recieve what the Universe offers us. Listen to our inner voice and where it wants to lead us. Every living being has a gift. Every human has a gift that it is their own to possess. The gift is to be. It is so simple but still so complicated. We are so busy doing what we think we ought to to do in life that we completeley forget about being. We are so in to fullfill the obligations at work and the expectations from society that we translate this to demands that we lay on our selves in our lives. It is an art to be satisfied without achieving or analysing. It is a rare gift and it needs training. Training to be able to feel the presence of the vibrating life on earth and recieve the caresses from the Universe.

    Photo: Michel Filinis
    Clarity

    When I listen to my inner voice I start experiencing life through a different perspecitve, in an other level. All scents become so distinct so as the different tastes that touch my tounge. The colors appear more clear and luminous. The vibrations of the sounds are more determined as they penetrate the air. The structures and shapes invite me to touch and feel with my whole body. To touch and feel life. All of this stimulates and energises the creative mind. The urge to create is a fact. The physical and mental sensations amaze me over and over again and as I listen I fall in love with life again and again.

    Photo: Michel Filinis

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-26
    Gothenburg, Sweden

  • Athens - April 2019

    The Blue Hole of Athens

    Some days passed before we could go deepdiving since my luggage arrived to Athens later than I did. The day after receiving my equipment we went to Pigadi. The blue hole of Athens.

    Me in my brand new 5mm wetsuit, Proteus II, from Fourth Element. Photo: Michel Filinis
    Arrival

    Luckily the luggage arrived with all items intact in the bag in which I had almost all my diving equipment including my brand new 5mm suit from Fourth Element. When we arrived, the sun was shining and we spent some time on the rocks by the sea to savor the environment. When coming to a new place I need some time for adjustment and just mentally land where my physical body is. The wind was a little bit cold but the april sun was warm enough to warm us up before the dives.

    Michel preparing the diving equipment before entering the sea.
    Me in my rashguard from Fourth Element from the Ocean positive collection. Photo: Michel Filinis
    Sunshine, lighting & thunder

    The clouds started getting thicker and darker as we started to put our wetsuits on. When all the equipment was on and we were ready to enter the sea we felt the first drops of rain fall on our heads coloring the rocks to darker nuances. We entered the sea and we saw the lightning. A lightning followed by a rumbling thunder. A magestic act of nature. I have always loved diving in the rain. The intense impressions above the surface in contrast to the calmness beneath is something special.


    Pigadi – “The Well”

    The name of the hole, Pigadi, means “The Well”. The bottom of the sea is at 10 meters, where the 3 meters wide hole opens and invites you to go another 20 meters. Pigadi has a total depth of 30 meters. At the bottom of the vertical cave an other horizontal cave leads to many other caves that no person knows for sure where they lead. New environments and new waters has to be explored with respect as the particular conditions differs from each site. For me it is the mental thing. To feel home. To feel safe. To dive in to a dark hole is quite an experience since it is hard to see what is in there, before you are in it. The way to find out is to approach it and enter.

    Me exploring Pigadi. Step by step. Photo: Michel Filinis
    Michel during the first dive ascendning from Pigadi.
    Entering the unexplored

    At first I could not even understand it was a hole. What I saw only looked like seabed on the bottom of the sea. It was so dark and hard to imagine that there was a hole to the depth of 30 meters. I decided to dive down and get to know it better as Michel prepared the buoy and the equipment. As I entered the shadow of Pigadi the inside revealed itself meter by meter. I had to take one step at a time for each dive to not be frightened by the unexplored. I needed some dives but then I submerged to the depth to see the cave that leads to the unknown. I stayed there for some seconds, looking around as the lightning from the sky above threw flashes of light into the hole for shorter than the blink of an eye. Above the surface the rain fell heavy on the surface of the sea. The lightning and thunder reminded us of the power and wonderful act of nature that we were fortunate to experience.

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-24
    Athens, Greece

  • Athens - April 2019

    The competition in Athens

    One week in Athens have passed and this week have given me so much more than I could imagine. I came here to do pool and depth training and to compete in a pool competition. I came here more or less without any expectations at all and the last days had so many wonderful moments.

    Photo: Michel Filinis
    Amazing Greece

    The amazing nature of Greece and the city and people of Athens has made me experience sensations of all kind. The smell of the soil is something special here. I had experiences in different waters with an extraordinary variation of weather with rain, hail, thunder, lighting, a warm, bright sun and harsh wind in the greek weather of April. The soft water of the lake and the chilling salty water of the Aegean Sea. This week has not only given me experiences of nature but of people with friendly familiar and new faces and newfound friend ships.

    Together with Aris Ioannidis who helped me with the coaching! Lovely to meet you again, as always.
    The outdoor pool competition

    There are so many things to write about from this week, let’s start with the pool competition! The pool of the competition was an outdoor 50 meter pool which was a new experience for me. This time there were no voices and sound of water bouncing on the walls but there was a blue sky were I could see the seagulls fly while relaxing before my OT. I really enjoyed the greek count down and greek conversation around me, the laughs and the hookbreathing. My OT:s were plannes to be 10:50 AM for DNF and 12:10 PM for DYNBifins. Quite little time between the starts.

    PB and national record!

    The competition was held in a 50 meter out door pool. My first dive gave me a white card, 135 meter DNF which is a competition PB! Less than 80 minutes later I made a new PB, white card and a new national record of DYNBifins with the distance of 166 meters. The fins I used were sent to Athens especially to me for this competitions. The fins are from Triton and I recieved them two days before the competition. That meant that I had one day to try them in the pool before the competition. So the total distance of training with my bifins were 200 meters before the competition.

    My new bifins from Triton

    My first pair of real long fins and I am so happy they fit my feet perfectly and follows the rhythm and the intensity of my kicks in a perfect way. Thank you Trition for my new beautiful babies Lighting and Thunder. The fins have souls, therefore they need names. What I am most happy about regarding this competition is that event though I had been diving both in pool and the ocean for one week in a row I had the strength to do PB in both DNF and DYNBifins. This means I have more to give and my promise is that more is to come!

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-23
    In the air between Athens and Moscow, Europe

  • Lär dig hålla andan längre (serie),  Övningar & Tips

    Lär dig hålla andan längre – Del 5: Stretching & Flexibilitet

    Den här gången tänker jag att det passar bra att vi lär oss en bra rörelser för att stretcha lungorna och bli lite mer flexibla i överkroppen för att skapa en härlig känsla under andhållningen.

    Kontinuitet

    Jag tror på kontinuerlig lungstretching och övningar för att skapa och bibehålla flexibilitet runt diafragman och lungorna. Med flexibiliteten tror jag att kontraktionerna under andhållningen inte upplevs så obehagliga. Just den här övningen tar inte lång tid och passar då bra att göra lite oftare, vilket jag tror på när det kommer till att bibehålla flexibiliteten. Nedanför texten som beskriver övningen finns det en video när jag gör en cykel av övningen. Den fungerar lika bra utan näsklämma. Tänka på att vara försiktig i rörelserna under hela övningen.

    Övning Del 5: Stretching & Flexibilitet

    Den här övningen är bra för att långsiktigt bibehålla flexibilitet kring diafragma och lungor och bra för att blir mjuk i kroppen inför en andhållning.

    Övningen tar cirka 5 minuter

    1. Ta ett djupt andetag. Börja med att fylla magen med luft, sedan lungorna och till slut halsen. Håll sedan andan under hela denna övningen.
    2. Sträck upp armarna så rakt du kan. Håll ihop händerna. Tänk att du gör en cirkel med händerna ovanför huvudet (som en gloria). Följ efter med torson i rörelsen. Den kommer också göra som cirklar. Gör tre varv åt ena hållet och tre varv åt det andra.
    3. Fortsätt håll armarna uppsträckta och slingra dig som en orm tre gånger åt vardera håll. Känn att det mjukar upp magen och lungorna.
    4. Fortsätt med att luta dig försiktigt åt ena sidan. Sträck ut sidan. Luta dig sedan åt andra hållet och sträck ut höger sida. Använd gärna händerna för att sträcka ut lite extra. Fortsätt håll andan. Kom tillbaka i positionen.
    5. Vrid överkroppen åt ena sidan. Tänk på att följa med med huvudet. Använd gärna händerna mot knät och golvet för att få till vridningen. Gör samma sak åt andra hållet. Fortsätt håll andan. Kom tillbaka i positionen.
    6. För samman händerna framför dig med sträckta armar och sträck ut mellan skuldrorna. För sedan samman händerna bakom dig och sträck ut bröstkorgen. Kom tillbaka i positionen. Släpp andan. Blås gärna ut luften långsamt som om du tömmer lungorna uppifrån och hela vägen ner i magen. Ta sedan några vanliga andetag igen.
    7. Repetera detta tre gånger.
    Mjuka rörelser

    Tänk på att vara försiktig när du gör den här övningen. Det ska inte göra ont. Övningen ska kännas mjuk och behaglig. Tänk på att röra dig med långsamma och medvetna rörelser. Gör gärna övningen på tom mage. Som många av mina tips i bloggen kan du se den här övningen som en inspirationskälla. Utveckla den gärna så att den passar dig.

    Tidigare delar i serien
    Det är extra viktigt att vara mjuk och smidig när man håller andan och dyker på djupet.

    Var snäll mot dig själv, var snäll mot andra.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-19
    Aten, Grekland

  • Athens - April 2019

    Spring time call

    It is spring time and usually in springtime something calls for me. It is a call that wants me to see, experience and learn new things. This time could listen to my call and now I’m here, for my call.

    Training & Recreation

    After a more than 12 hours long flight trip the plane started its landing. We we went through the soft and partially transparent clouds and finally I could se the beautiful landscapes and the blue water of the mediterranean sea. I was landing at Aten-Elefthérios Venizélos. I had landed in the capital of Greece.

    The first days

    This was quite a spontaneous trip. In the late winter I really felt to go, see and explore something new. Maybe to get a distance and time to think. This trip is primary a step to really learn new things about deepdiving and about my self. Since this is the third day waking up in this place on earth I’ve already spent some time training in the pool and diving in the ocean together with a new found friend. Since my bag arrived later than me I didn’t have all my diving equipment from day one so we also spent time just exploring above surface. Exploring the beauty of Greece at all levels. I enjoy every single moment and every second of being here, breathing here. And not breathing. Even though I lived in Crete I actually never spent time in Athens. The familiar and unfamiliar smells brings back and creates new beautiful memories.

    And a competition

    The 21rst of april I will wrap up my days here by joining a competition in which I’ll do DNF and DYNB. Looking forward to it. I’m expecting a delivery of my new bifins today! Can’t wait to try them on!

    DNF-training. Photo: Michel Filinis

    Be kind to yourself, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-17
    Athens, Greece

  • Reflection

    Mindfulness is the key

    There are many important components to become a good freediver. Training set up and diet are crucial. But for me the mindset is everything. In my dives I use mindfulness as natural way to meet the dives.

    Physically we need to be totally relaxed, mentally we have to be ready. Ready to push ourselves until the body screams for a new breath… We have to welcome this with a calm and focused mind.

    All athletes has their own secrets

    Most of the time while spending time with freedivers I’m struck by the friendly atmosphere, it doesn’t matter if it’s training, a mini comp, the Swedish Championship or even the World Championship. Although we’re rivals and compete against each other, it is freediving we have in common. I meet people with a passion for freediving and some who even has freediving as a lifestyle, our conversations and discussions are often about training, diets or mindset. It is so exciting that every athlete has their own set up and thoughts behind their achievements. In one way it feels like we share a common secret. The secret of how to stretch, what some people would call, ” the boundaries for what is possible”.

    This photo is from a STA training with my apnea club Juniordykarna. I heard someone quite new to freediving reached 5 minutes.
    A calm & focused mind

    Every athlete also has their own secret. The secret of how they’ve reached this level and how they are able to do these extraordinary things. Some people choose to share the secret and some people don’t. In my opinion to be a master of relaxation, concentration and focus is crucial within freediving. Physically we need to be totally relaxed, mentally we have to be ready. Ready to push ourselves until the body screams for a new breath. The need for a breath manifests itself through contractions in the body, the body is trying to take this breath, but we know we can do more. We have to welcome this with a calm and focused mind.

    A calm and focused mind. The bikini is from the Ocean Positive collection from Fourth Element.
    Precense & Distance

    First I need the mental stability. With a stable mind I can get everything out of my physical capacity. The mental and physical strength is so closely interconnected to me and I feel that it becomes extra clear through my experinces through freediving. I use mindfulness in my dives. Mindfulness is about conscious presence, being here and now without valuing or analyzing. In the dive I have to be fully aware of what is going on with my body and I have to accept what happens. With that I can be aware of my actions with a kind of a mental distance. This mental distance makes me experience a physical distance as well. I observe what happens. I observe but I don’t value the signals unless they are crucial to my consciousness. I’ve now reached a level in my development when this way of meeting the dives with mindfulness is so natural to me that I do dives without feeling any discomfort at all. I just enjoy the dives, enjoy being.

    While doing Static I prefer being cold. Here I wear a rashguard from Fourth Elements Ocean Positive collection.

    Be kind to your self, be kind to others.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-09
    Gothenburg, Sweden

  • Lär dig hålla andan längre (serie),  Övningar & Tips

    Lär dig hålla andan längre – Del 4: Lägre syrenivåer

    I den här delen av serien kommer vi testa på att hålla andan lite längre. Vi har i de tidigare delarna fått med oss kunskap kring andningen, lärt oss att ta riktigt djupa andetag och gjort övningar för att lära känna kroppen och huvudet i obehaget. Det kommer vi ha nytta av nu!

    Bilden är från SM i poolfridykning 2019. Photo: Elin Larsgren
    Vänj dig vid längre andhållningar

    För många kan den första andhållningen under en träning upplevas som en av de jobbigaste av andhållningarna. Huvudet och kroppen är kanske inte riktigt med och beredda på påfrestningen som de utsätts för. Därför kan det vara bra att göra några andhållningar på rad för att för varje andhållning öka tiden lite grann. I det här inlägget delar jag med mig av en övning som jag ofta gjorde i början av min fridykningskarriär för att förbättra mig och förlänga mina andhållningar och vänja kroppen vid lägre syrenivåer.

    Övning Del 4: Lägre syrenivåer

    Den här övningen är bra för att långsamt vänja huvudet och kroppen vid längre andhållningar och lägre syrenivåer.

    1. Hitta ett ställe där du kan ligga ned ostört. Lägg dig ned raklång och slappna av i hela kroppen och känn din andning.
    2. Andas lugnt i alla fall i två minuter innan du börjar. Ta tre djupa andetag innan varje andhållning.
    3. Börja med att hålla andan 1:30 min. Återhämta dig den dubbla tiden.
    4. Håll sedan andan 1:45 min. Återhämta dig den dubbla tiden.
    5. Håll andan 2:00 min. Återhämta dig den dubbla tiden.
    6. Håll andan 2:15 min. Återhämta dig den dubbla tiden.
    7. Håll andan 2:30 min. Klart!
    För lätt eller för svårt?

    Justera tiden för andhållning och återhämtning efter den nivå du ligger på. Se till att din tid för återhämtning är minst lika lång som din andhållning. Den här övningen är en inspiration, gör gärna din egen variant av den. Den går lika bra att göra i vatten, se då till att ha en vän med som säkrar dig och vet vad det innebär.

    Tips appar!

    Det finns många appar att ladda ner i telefonen där du kan ställa in precis hur lång andhållning och återhämtning du vill ha. I vissa appar kan du skriva in ditt personbästa och apparna ordnar ett upplägg för dig.

    Tidigare delar i serien

    Var snäll mot dig själv, var snäll mot andra.

    Nicole Edensbo, 2019-04-07
    Göteborg, Sverige