How’s that for a commitment? Not too forceful, and probably not anything anyone would believe but myself. I have had a great many days to figure out just how I want to live my life, and that’s a good thing because while thinking about it I WAS living my life.
I’ve got it down to a few simple goals, simple in that they are all things that I can control should I choose to. Not simple at all to do. That takes discipline. I never like that word. Discipline. Sounds too hard. Discipline is what great athletes have, you know, the ones that make it, and say they practiced everyday of their lives since they could walk. Yuck! I would be too bored to have done that.
But now, in my wisdom, I understand that discipline is just another way of saying do what you like, often, and always, and don’t stray. It means do all the things that you need to do to reach or achieve your goal. It means line up everything in favor of what you want. It means focus. Focus hard. It also means filter. You have to filter out the distractions. Whether these distractions are internal, as in your mind – your thoughts, or external as in everything and everyone in the whole dang world. Filtering and focus are both at your disposal, and they are the best f*cking tools you’ll every know.
Oh don’t forget belief, self-confidence. You have to, have to, believe that you can do whatever it is you want. I don’t care one bit if it is a realistic goal or not. Judging your goal is a major distraction. Don’t do it…and never let anyone else do it (judge your goal) for you!
Discipline, focus, filter and believe. The keys to everything.
Please add any other keys in the comment section below.
It’s a great day! Enjoy.
The other day, I stumbled onto this little known non-profit it’s called,”because I said I would” The premise behind the concept is that when people are true to their word and follow through on their promises and commitments the world becomes a better place. I tend to agree. Also the action of writing your promise down on paper really can solidify your commitment. I found the “because I said I would” concept completely complimentary with my Dad’s mantra “be true to yourself”, which is now how I live.
Rewind back to last year when we struggled to raise funds for our dog, Batman’s, wheelchair. It was during that process I really understood how difficult it is to raise funds after you have tapped out your resources. So I promised myself that I would donate once a month to a cause. Not to a huge corporate fundraising machine, but rather to an individual or a family. (In my mind someone that’s who really needs it and I know the money goes directly to their fund, a win-win)
I wasn’t sure how I could keep this commitment because money is so very tight. I had to come up with an amount that I could handle regardless of what other emergency pops up, and they pop up all the freakin’ time so I settled on ten dollars. How could I remember to give ten dollars? My answer; ten on the tenth.
So here you have my first “because I said I would.” 10 dollars every tenth of the month to a fundraiser on youcaring.com. ( a free fundraising site)
What will you do because you said you would?
So I have something to show you:
It was a long time coming but we finally got rid of this stuff and the monthly fee to save it.
We still have some items at my Mother’s house and in our garage and basement but we are getting so much closer. During the course of this effort , many things have taken time away from our goal. I say that not as an excuse but rather a reality check for myself. You see I always think I can get everything down FAST! Life doesn’t work that way. More important situations come around that you have to tend to, or in many cases that you want to tend to.
It’s been a tough lesson, changing goals, deadlines, and lowering expectations….but I am better for it. I’m still cluttered, but only half as crazy as I was before.
So I didn’t make it pass day three of “May Cause Miracles.” That’s right, it was so easy, I said. A snap. “I can do this!”
But life has a way of interrupting even the best of intentions. I mean if all I had to do was to take care of myself, just me, no one else or no other creature, or no other anything, just maybe I could make it past day 3. I don’t know.
I told myself I would catch up, or start over, I have not done either yet. My plate of life is so full right now with……business issues, legal issues, my Mother is ill, my children aren’t settled, a house in disrepair, oh and let’s not forget the tax issues they just found from 2004!
There is even more than that, but that’s about all I care to put into writing.
I think I have done it all wrong. I must have. Everything. Wrong. Since the beginning of my life I must have listened to the wrong people and taken in the wrong messages. I don’t know how else I could have arrived at this place at this time. Because how? Tell me how ? One person can really want a better existence yet can’t ever figure out how to get it?
For the most part I have tried to do the right thing. Even as a small child I knew not to belittle or mock others, I stood up for the underdog ALWAYS. I would think, what would be best? What would be nice? What would be helpful?
Yet here I am, a struggling mess.
I can be sarcastic but only in fun. You know a dry sense of humor….that alone shouldn’t have banished me to this place.
I eat healthy. Food and weight isn’t my issue. I do not long for material items. I dont want or need the latest greatest anything. I just want a simple peaceful life.
Maybe someone has a voodoo doll of me and they are sticking it with pins. That’s about all I can figure, or I was a horrible person in another lifetime. Oy Vey!
So I am still on my treacherous journey to living better with less, however I’ve had a few roadblocks thrown my way. For instance; perpetual moving. We moved last year, and we moved again this year, plus for some added fun we moved our office last month.
When you have to move with deadlines, you tend to throw things where ever they will fit, and this only leads to more chaos.
Welcome to my chaos land. I have piles of crap, a storage unit that is totally filled again due to overflow from the business move, and a basement that needs to be transformed into livable space by Thanksgiving.
I hate it. I have been working on this for over a year. Sometimes it feels as if I am getting nowhere fast.
My focus yesterday was make-up. I didn’t take any photos (took the one above just now), because I just forgot. I forgot that, “hey maybe I’ll blog about this and get back on track.” Nope, my only thought was, “What the f*ck is all this stuff?” Tons of anti-aging shit. Really expensive brands that I never even used. I have wrinkles, because I should. I am the perfect age for me. But back when I didn’t even need the stupid wrinkle cream, I bought it. I was convinced I had to have it, time and time again. I bought into the hype, hook line and sinker.
And still I hang on to it; why? I mean seriously, some days I don’t have enough discipline to even remove my mascara before bed.
( best tip ever: use a little olive oil to remove mascara, I promise you’ll never go back to anything else )
What makes me think I will ever want to go through some “ritual” every night to see maybe a 5 % difference in fine lines in 60 days? Nothing. I would never see the difference anyway. In 60 days I would forget to even look.
In addition to the many miracle wrinkle creams, I found duplicates of various blushes, “glows” and even some Lip Venom. Lip Venom I bought maybe 4 years ago – unopened. Like I need Lip Venom. Big sigh.
I rarely wear make-up beyond mascara and lipstick and for special ” I give a sh*t days” days I may wear some cover. Even still haven’t pulled the trigger to go ahead and thrown away all these concoctions.
I can see now, I am really writing this post to psych myself into throwing hundreds of dollars of cosmetics away. Tonight is garbage night. Which means if I do it now, there is no turning back. (Update I didn’t throw anything away on garbage night.)
One good thing has come from this huge burden of material things, I have stopped purchasing items I think I want. I have been sticking closely to buying only needs. Lucky for me, my “needs” are really very few and far between. ( not to say big ticket items don’t pop up when unexpected -like brakes, tires, tie-rods, flight for children, and animal care, etc.) But I have stopped buying meaningless stuff, and that’s a step in the right direction.
A guy I know once told me that his goal was to ” live below his means.” I like that thinking. That’s where I want to be; less stuff, no debt, and a simple life. This is my goal. Everyday we are getting closer, but it’s a long process and along the way we do stumble.
The only thing to do after you stumble, I mean FALL, is get back up.
Here’s to getting back up. Cheers.
(*Ignore my foul language that’s just how the words came out today. )
This is basically how I feel and what I believe in a nut shell.
Please watch and actually take a moment to see how materialism has shaped your life. I was forced to look at my ways, and I am better for it. At least, I feel better and I am happier.
I am free from the grip of corporations, and I strive to become even more free each and every day.
How many of you out there feel like this:
You read all the cool stuff about how to be happy , centered, nurtured, live in the moment, live in love and light, eat this and that, they are super foods after all and then you feel good. Yeah, it feels pretty good reading the words and thinking about the possibilities. “Feel good” words, but when it comes to living that life I have found it’s a ongoing struggle. Sometimes I want nothing more that to eat BBQ chips and watch TV. Yeah, crappy TV.
Don’t get me wrong, if TV was better I would pick the better shows….but that’s not the point. The point is there is only so much a person can take of learning how to be “wonderful in mind, body and spirit”
I hate to admit this, but I find it difficult sometimes to read more then the headlines…..or given a top ten list and I read the only the words printed in bold. I tell myself I will read in depth later. Ha!
I understand when a person is in that world, they are excited and want to share, and thank God they do. I would never spend the amount of time takes to figure out the grams of fiber and calories in any particular green smoothie let alone a book full of these recipes. There’s only so many hours in a day.
When I get my rest and eat well, and balance my day – there’s very little that can get me down. I know when I am really it, “it” being in the moment with a clear mind and heart, everything is so dang easy.
Come to think about it, I have changed my life. I should be proud of my growth instead of measuring myself against those far more centered or advanced than myself. That’s the key. I can read what I want and what I can handle, and if I feel like I am failing because I slack off, then at least I know I only have my self to blame…..which I should never do.
Don’t talk yourself down.
I should acknowledge that I do the best I can on any given day and that to me should be perfection. I am going to try to kill my inner judge. That judge has been living inside me way too long. I think this is a good thing.
Tip: Be as kind to yourself, remember you are still learning.
Inspiration: “Imperfection is not our personal problem, it is a natural part of existing.” – Tara Brach
One-day one-thing: Seek out the beauty in everyday life. Make mental acknowledgements of what beauty you see.
When I got up this morning I took my vitamin, grabbed the glass next to my computer with soda in it to wash it down. But it was left over red wine from last night. That’s what happens when you don’t use a wine glass. I chased that with the remnants in a can of root beer that was sitting next to it. Root beer and red wine, not anything I will do again. Nasty.
I got to work and couldn’t find a lighter anywhere to light my candle, the relaxing CD I wanted to played was skipping and iTunes isn’t working. I found Dark Side of the Moon on the floor (in it’s case), so that is playing and I am still looking for a way to light this yummy candle.
I was going to do real work, but I decided to clean this mess of an office instead.
Here are some before shots.
Okay, now my Danskos just stared falling apart. Wow, I never thought that would happen.
I still have not found a lighter, I am heading home to let the dogs out, I will be back with a vacuum cleaner.
Okay, forgot the lighter at home, now going to finish cleaning up this mess. If I can make something out of this day, anyone can.
Here are my “Afters.” :)
I still have a lot to do but this took me all day. It’s dark outside now. I will be working all day tomorrow on real work and final clean-up of this office. Maybe then I won’t be so overwhelmed. I’ll consolidate those post-its for sure ( have to put all those passwords & numbers somewhere- else) , and I’ll see how many document boxes I can store out of sight.
In the end , my lighter was on my desk under piles of papers, my candle was burning, and soft stoner music was playing. Not so bad, it was a good day.
Peace everyone. Enjoy your weekends.
I stumbled on this blog yesterday, and I can not stop thinking about it. Primarily I read about the woman herself. I wanted to know and learned what made her succeed at changing her life. More about me -How I got to paradise.
I believe that if we really stop. Stop what we are doing at this moment, and ask ourselves, “Is this where I want to be?” Many of us may answer, “not really.” Other will answer, “yes.” They need not read any further.
I’m in the “not really” category. I thought I was getting closer to figuring it all out and then poof, I determined I had to adjust my thinking. Which has lead me nowhere, but back to limbo of not being able to formulate concrete goals.
I didn’t place my bid on the No.3 (small) house. I woke in the middle of the night and I thought OMG what if I can’t sell it, I’ll be stuck there forever. And that quite frankly scared the sh*t out of me.
All the cheer-leading I did yesterday didn’t even work for me. That’s another topic for a post, those who can tell others what to do, but can’t seem to do it themselves. I fell back to second guessing myself, and asking myself,” wow is this it? Is this the final destination?” I couldn’t make it be. I couldn’t pull the trigger and commit to this area. Even though we have other commitments here, my gut told me not to make that decision. At least not right now.
I listened to my intuition – I get credit for that , because in the past I have ignored my gut feelings thus leading to my own peril.
We [I] need to determine what it is that keeps us inside the boxes we have made for ourselves. The boxes can be our location, our job, our eating habits, or exercise non-habits, it can be any box at all. It’s what ever has you stuck. I don’t like feeling stuck. Feeling stuck is both terrifying and depressing.
So I am returning to square one. Back to the basics. Time to reevaluate everything. Again. But know we have time, because it’s December. And in December the world stops for awhile. There are holidays, and we even close the business for a week. I am going to follow the 5 tips below:
1. Recognize that you are in a rut and have lost your ability to dream beyond your zip code. First step always acknowledge the issue. (easy, check, done)
2. Determine that you are willing to make real changes in your life. Start with small changes that you can turn into habits. It takes 21 day for something to become a habit. (so I have read) Today is a good day to start.
3. Set goals, small and big, set at least 5 for starters.
4. Intention: concentrate on your attention on your goal with every choice you make. Question everything, does this get me closer to my goal or not? Only participate in those things that are in line with your goals.
5. Follow through. No excuses.
At the end of December, review what you have accomplished and make 5 new goals for the next month. This will at least get you[me] moving in a direction rather than, floating aimlessly inside a box of limbo.
I recall hoping 2011 would be better than 2010, and I find I am wishing for the same thing this year. Only this year it has to get better, or I may become a drug addict for real. (and oddly enough that doesn’t scare me :)
I seriously can’t take much more.
Tip: Don’t beat yourself up, most people have no clue how to change their lives.
Inspiration: ” Tell me to what you pay attention and I will tell you who you are. “- Jose Ortega y Gasset
One-day one-thing: Clean your work area in you home, this will help you to gain focus.