So rather than killing myself writing a post, I’m going to take a shower and get to bed.
There’s going to be another day tomorrow that I can write again. Sometimes that’s just how it goes.
Live to write another day.
The internal musings of a disorganised mind.
Recently I’ve been finding myself wondering if I could have done better.
Better in my career. Better in my business. Better in my relationships.
As I get older, the feeling of regret of missed opportunities is getting worse. I’m finding it hard to stay in the present moment and enjoy what is in the now.
If you aren’t in the moment, you are either looking forward to uncertainty, or back to pain and regret.
I know that what matters is the present moment. I can’t change the past. And the future has yet to come.
But it’s easy to forget that when you’re bombarded with so many things.
I know if I focus on the now much of the anxiety and frustration can be alleviated. But the anxiety and frustration are making it hard to focus on the now.
It’s a trap.
These anxieties are feeding my regrets, so first thing first, is to get back into my mindfulness practice be learn to be present once again.
So I can focus on what I have:
And then I can become what I could be.
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.
Today was one of those days.
Almost everything hurts.
Head. Eyes. Throat. Back. Legs. Butt.
Yet, I still barreled through the day getting stuff done. And in the end, what do I have to show for it. I’m not getting anything extra for showing up.
I should have taken one of those perks of the job – the sick day.
But I didn’t.
Instead, I diligently showed up for my job doing the work without thanks or appreciation.
Fighting fires. Dealing with escalations. Decisions to make. Staff problems to resolve.
And the kicker – doing monthly reports to show how terribly I’ve done over the past month.
It just doesn’t seem worth it.
Perhaps it’s just me, but as I get older I find myself becoming more anxious and risk-averse.
I wasn’t feeling like this a decade ago. Back then I was willing to jump into my own business. I was taking on projects I’ve never done before. And willing to take on new challenges.
But now… I’m less inclined to do so.
Perhaps it’s the lull of a stable job (and pay) and more financial responsibilities as kids get older.
But looking back at it, there’s no reason for me to be feeling like this. Nothing has fundamentally changed except my age.
The number of children I have. The bills I pay. The cars I own. They haven’t changed.
The only thing that has changed is my attitude to the challenges that I’ve faced over the past 10 years.
While my attitude back then was one of optimism and “go for it”, my attitude now is one of cautious pursuit, to put it mildly.
Need to readjust, reframe, and restart.
Today I got up at 5 am and went for my Sunday morning run.
Bought fruits and newspapers on the way back.
Got home and made breakfast. My elder daughter was up so I made her breakfast too.
Afterwards, I deposited the recycling. Stopped at the gas station.
Back at home, I seasoned the meat that I was going to make for lunch – some pork chops and spare ribs.
Then a bathed the dogs. Then bathed me.
Then back to preparing lunch. Put the meat in the oven. Then prepared the vegetables.
Wash. Chop. Steam. Sautee.
The meat was done. Cut up the spare ribs.
A quick shower then a 10-minute break.
Then off to ironing my shirt, and the kids’ school uniforms.
Finished around 7:30 pm. Had dinner. Then sat down to type this up.
So busy. And I’m quite tired right now.
But what I wasn’t busy doing:
– Researching information for my final year project.
– Learning/practising development with Python.
– Learning ML/DL/AI.
– Mastering focus and time management.
It’s now the 1st of December and I haven’t made a dent in the things I planned to do this year.
I didn’t have to do many of the things I did today. I didn’t have to cook. Or iron the kids’ uniforms.
But I did it anyway.
And this is how procrastination works sometimes.
It’s not that you’re lazy. It’s that you decide to focus your time on other things.
Yes, I’ve done some useful things. But not doing my wildly important goals will hurt me in the long term.
Today passed by and didn’t get much done. It feels as though there’s just not enough time in the day to do all that I have to.
Yesterday I wrote about this scarcity mindset and how it reduced cognitive functioning. So I should have been in a better place to recognise that happening.
But knowing is not doing.
At the end of the day, I feel disappointed that I haven’t done as much as I have planned. But it will take time for new habits to form, just as it did for my writing.
Set up the cues, build the actions, and take time to enjoy the rewards.
I know that I am still a work in progress and I will improve as time progresses.
Dump. Delegate. Defer. Do.
There’s always too much to do, but if I focus on the wildly important ones, I will succeed beyond measure.
Some time ago I read a book called Abundance, by Peter Diamandis. In it, he argued that because of technology things would get better and that we are living in a world of abundance, or abundant opportunity.
Reading it at the time I thought this idea that we are surrounded by abundance was dangerous. We understand the energy challenges we’re facing, with dwindling fish stocks, wildlife, forests, clean water, and the list goes on.
So thinking that we have an abundance of these things basically tells people that it’s okay to take what they want.
However, living with the thought of scarcity can be even worse.
The belief that a resource is scarce sends the value up (think demand and supply curves) but also people wanting the item.
Take for example the whole Popeyes chicken sandwich, which was scarce for some reason, driving up demand. There were reports of people trying to sell the sandwich for up to US$100.
That is crazy.
But as a cognitive bias, scarcity places a load on our minds and affects our cognitive functioning.
Someone who thinks that time is scarce focus more on the ticking clock and lead to less creative solutions. It causes overwhelm that causes delays that then delay other tasks.
Someone who thinks that money is scarce decreases their problem-solving capability, whereas high-income people are unaffected.
I see this affecting me constantly, where I do not believe that there is enough time in the day to get things done.
It’s more than likely that there are too many things to do, and I need to focus on the important stuff.
Time is abundant, and I need to move away from that scarcity mindset.
The unexamined life is not worth living.
I started reading and learning about philosophy and mindfulness about six or seven years ago. It’s changed my life.
It’s allowed me to be more accepting of things in the world. To accept things that happen as is. And to be aware of my thoughts and emotions and how they affect my actions.
It hasn’t helped to be perfect but has helped me to accept imperfection.
I believe it has helped me to become a better person.
So I was surprised to hear my wife say that I’ve changed after I did that philosophy course. She didn’t say it in a good way.
While I am on this journey of self-discovery and was feeling good about myself, it appears that I’ve been alienating my family.
Here I was thinking I was making myself better for the benefit of myself and my family, but the perception is the opposite.
Who’d have thunk?
This is a blog mainly about my personal thoughts and opinions, but it's also a personal journey to self discovery.
Well I have, and I want to do something about it.