Thursday, August 23, 2012

You don't need motivation

Still you think you do  

It's amazing how many posts about motivation I can read on the web. So I just have a few questions : What is all the fuss about motivation? Why is it that we need so much to be motivated?

I happen to spend some time reading those above-mentioned post and got moved by quotes more than once. Most of the time, they give me a feeling of relief but only when I've been motivated before by something else do I feel fully receptive to them.
Reading about motivation and trying to be inspired is good but it is not enough. Looking for motivation outsides ourselves is like burning an amazing fire but a fire of hay : it doesn't last. 
To keep the fire lasting, you need to feed it wood. And that is your personal experience and the ability you have to step outside of your usual ways of being.

Motivation is our true nature

My guess, preposterous as it may sound is that motivation is our true nature. Only we need to read or listen about it to remind us what it is we are truly made of. Motivation speeches have a lasting effect on you if you have ressources inside and do not only rely on this as an exterior source of fuel.

The virus of motivation speeches : get it, then get cured 

Friday, August 10, 2012

3 steps to stop being fooled by time

Procrastination often comes down to a preconceived idea of time

It is often when you have plenty on your plate that you feel like you could do some more if only you had just a little spare time for yourself.
This is a distorted feeling and you only need to have plenty of time all of a sudden to realize you're not able to do any of the things you said you would do if you could. Like some guy once put it : If you have all day (to do one thing), this is how long it will take.

We procrastinate because we envision things that are to be done in a very twisted manner. When we think about it, we do not only think about ht every action itself, we unconsciously think that it will take that much time.
So it is the idea of how long it will take that is actually stopping us from actually doing it. And this idea is wrong most of the time. 

Emotional time is fooling you

The problem is not so much the time it would actually take to do it but the emotional time we attached to it. 
For example you may think it would be great if you were going for a walk but you don't because you think 'My time is worth more than this' or 'I don't have time for that' and therefore you drop the idea and stay at home.
Same happens for all your activities. You could achieve much more if only you'd stop thinking in emotional time and come back to "real" timing instead.

Going for that walk may not be more than 15 minutes which is nothing in a day of work but can contribute to make a great difference.

Here are a few steps you can take to make your actions happen and stop being worried about how long they would take you.

1. Time your activities 

This is simple but you need objective measurement. Knowing that writing a post takes one hour and actually experiencing it are too different things. And one could help save another.
If you don't practice it, chances are that one hour in your head will have nothing to do with the real one hour.
One "real" hour can be days in "emotional time" as long as you get fooled by it.
So take your watch and time things up.

2. Put things in perspective 

Imagine you're talking with someone who has mastered a field you too would like to engage in. As you speak to them he tells you that it took him two years to reach this level. And for him, those two years are just a memory while for you they are a projection in the future (imagination).
What you want to do is talk to people who a have actually make your future their past so that you see it is possible to get there and stop worrying about the damn future.

3. Draw a time-map of your activities 

We mentioned before how emotional time can fool you now let's consider it an ally.
Some things need to be done and they don't take as long as you imagine. This is when time things up can be your friend while emotional time would fool you.
Emotional time can be your friend as well.
The fact is : We tend to spend more time thinking about what we do not want to do rather than spending it doing things we like.
So it's important you map the emotional-time your activities take you. You can define the emotional unit to measure it.

Here's a quick example

'Calling my friend' takes much more time on my mind than 'clean my place' or going to the next party.
This way I can see what is on my mind and on what it is I spend my time pondering instead od doing. 

"We tend to spend  
more time thinking about
 what we do not want to do
 rather than spending it 
doing things we like."

Those maps help me figure out what takes too much time in my head and what doesn't. This way, I can decide to focus on those who take way too much room/ emotional time and break them down to what they really are by timing them. This also and as a side-effect, help realize what it is I tend to unconsciously worry about most of the day.   
it also help figure out that some things just don't make sense : they are on my head for no acceptable reason. This map help wipe away what is not necessary. 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

10 simple things to upgrade your life

And you can start it just now
Written under the influence of : 
-quiet morning 
-red tea 

Here are a few tips worth doing to actually feel better about yourself and move from a zone of low energy to a feeling of high energy and awesomeness. They are a gymnastics of happy habits . 

1. Talk to a stranger

This is a simple way to break the pattern of habits that is killing you if you let the routine happen. Start simple if you are an introverted person. As you walk down the streets to go to work ask someone your way for example. Do it till it becomes all the most natural to you. 
It may take more or less time depending on your personality but the outcomes of such a practice are great. 
Then you can do it at the restaurant or in the train/bus/metro... One simple technique is to slip in a word in a conversation people are having. Let's say they're talking about the weather or what is going on in the news. This is where you come in : spot the blanks in the conversation and sneak in. 

I know this photos sucks. Still, you can find it at :


-stranger 1  (talking to stranger 2) : "I was planning to go on a week-end but the weather is getting more and more shitty these last few days."
-you : "And it seems it will last all this month..."

At this stage the stranger 1 may smile at you or say something like "yeah, we are not so lucky this year".
Now, you've done your homework. You can say bye bye and leave and keep on talking. Up to you !

2. Make a friend a compliment

Doing this will actually coerce you into having a new look at your surroundings and improve the quality of your relationships. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

You're done processing, come back to the silent level.

The more you conceptualize the more you get lost

writter under the influence of :
-Drive Yourself Sane
-Conversations with friends

The book from S.P Kodish and B I KOdish "Drive Yourself Sane"has had a great influence on me those days. The following post may be strongly influenced by that book for sure.

I quite often catch myself being trapped into the realm of thinking. I love to consume knowledge and read books. As a consequence, when I don't read, I tend to drift into thinking about what I read and to make sense of what I understood from those books.
We all have this tendancy to get caught in our thinking and we tend to see it as being normal. Well, it's not. Most of the time, your thoughts and assumptions are you mental cancer, a growing source of pollution. 

This automatic thinking can be a great source of joy, let's say it. Still, it has its pitfalls and counter productive effects. Computing information can certainly provide ideas and stimulation to work but you pretty quickly get caught in the moving sands of creativity. 
Somehow it's like, the more you are trying to think, the less productive and creative you become. 
Such a side effect of thinking can be explained by the very nature of our thinking

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Share your koans

What are the words that have enlightened you? 

Article written under the influence of :
-soundtrack music 
-smells of a metro station 

In this post, I'd like to share with you those flashes of insigth with have from time to time. 

To make it simpler, I define them here as "koans", in reference to those japanese short sentences the Zen masters make to enligthen their students. I presume we all happen to go through such moments of insights which we then carry around with us.

Those words my be all the most simple but
they have a special power because they make sense to you. 

Mine for eg. would be some a thought I had recently which was "Life looks like a Subway station." 

Should I try to explain what it was to me I'd say as a was waiting for the metro to arrive, I realized I could not see more of the world than the limited horizon the station offered me.

People kept coming in whom I had no idea where they had been before and where they would be going after this moment. And I felt I was the only one aware of this. 

It truly felt like what a would call a "gift of a vision".

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

5 reasons why you should watch tv shows

and not feel guilty about it 

article written under the influence of : 

Here are five motivations I found when it comes to watching tv shows. 
I'd be thrilled to here from your motivations to watch them. 

I once read a quote from actress Audrey Hepburn who said that most things she knew, she learnt from the movies. (can't find the very quote right now but trust me, I did see it somewhere online.) 
And that little sentence made a great impression on me, the effect of which are still lasting today (so A. Hepburn's effect). Still, I guess what this beautiful actress said about the movies works for tv shows too and even more accurately for tv shows.  

So lately, I was watching some tv shows and when I was done, I just felt...kinda different and better off. I listed all the positive effects those hours of being a spectator of a fictional world made me feel are here they are.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Shamanism : your mum is one of them

 By Henri

I've long been interested in shamanism and psychic abilities and I'l just like to share with you a simple idea I had on how to explain shamanism and to whose who don't get it (it may be you, yes, you). You'll see that this is not some exotic-far-fetched notion from the Amazon jungle but a word which encompass our daily lives.

My point is not so much to focus on an academic definition of what "shamanism" is and all it may imply. If you're interested in the matter and want to explore it more deeply, I recommend you listen or read resources from Terrence McKenna, the guy has mastered the field. 

It seems to me a simple way to give a hint on what a shaman would be to consider some trivial examples of daily life.