When you neglect your body, everything else suffers

The market moves very fast because of technology. It has given people access to things almost instantly. In the past, they had to wait for days if not weeks before getting their hands on it.

Because of that, as a creator, you find yourself working almost non-stop just so that you don’t get drown out by the market.

Or maybe that isn’t even the real reason or excuse. It could be the fact that you are just lazy and couldn’t be bother.

In either case, the one thing that gets neglected is the body. You eat junk food because it’s cheaper and faster to get. You don’t exercise because it requires a lot of willpower for you to get out of that chair, couch or bed.

Over time, the body becomes weaker, prone to sickness and pains. Not only that, it gains more weight. With more fats, the body becomes inflamed. Before long, your body is fighting off infections and inflammation. And that affects your brain and mental health. You get depressed easily. You can’t tolerate work and life-related stresses well anymore. Tiredness and sleepiness also become very common.

And making things even worse is age. By the time you get to your thirties, your metabolism drops even more, compounding the weight problem. And failure to take care of your body leads to even more problems.

I know because I’m dealing with them now.

My lack of physical activities the past few months (especially ever since I turned 29) has given me a ton of allergies. My tummy and overall body size have become rounder and bigger. I get tired more easily. My body aches and hurts like there’s no end because of the amount of time I spend in front of a computer or a digital device. And it’s nobody’s fault but mine.

With those issues, I find myself sometimes unable to concentrate on my tasks, lacking excitement in what I do and I just want to sleep more. Now even my fiction writing also grind somewhat into a halt because my brain just isn’t able to work efficiently.

And I know now it’s not the holiday season that’s making me so lazy. Being overweight and lacking physical activity is what make me lazy and sick more often. It’s a vicious cycle really.

So what I have to do is exercise more. Get out more.

And it’s important to set goals that are more sustainable.

So my goal won’t be about losing certain amount of weight by certain time. And I know that alone isn’t sustainable for me because I tried. My goal now is that I want to feel better about myself in terms of energy level and overall health so that I can do my best work.

Now you see, don’t ever neglect your body. Treat it well and treat it right. In turn, it will treat you good.

P.S. I’m actually using the lump that is my tummy to prop up the laptop I’m using to write while I’m lying down on my bed because my back, especially the neck, is hurting. It’s embarrassing really.

Time is painfully limited but…

We all got the same 24 hours.

It is easy to lose track of time when we are busy or when we aren’t being intentional about how we spend the time. For most of us, we probably are like that. And so, we would probably complain about the lack of time to do the things we want. It’s painful for us to realise one day gone just like that.

By we and us, I mostly refer to myself.

And that probably will get a certain judgmental look from highly-productive people because they are able to get more things done during that 24 hours and get sufficient sleep to repeat the cycle the next day.

But you know what?

We are all different, have different strengths and weaknesses. So it’s okay that we probably won’t be able to be as effective at certain task as another person. In fact, it’s stupid to compare ourself with another person. Always do you. If not, you are going to make yourself miserable as fuck.

What you can do is to be very aware on how we spend the time and where did we spend it on. Then seek to improve on your efficiency at doing some of the tasks if necessary. It’s important to take ownership of what you have done and your failures. And never ever complain about your lack of time.

P.S. I was inspired to write this because I found myself spending way too much time on my Nintendo Switch playing Diablo 3, watching Netflix, and then realising I got about ten books that I bought but never got around to read. But it’s the holidays season. So I guess it’s okay to let loose a little.

Feelers’ struggle with decisions

Some people you meet in life seems to give you the impression that they got everything handled. They are confident and assertive. The way they make decision seems to come very naturally to them.

Then there are those on the other end where every major decision gives the person a panic attack. They stumble, mumble and seem really unsure of themselves when they say their choice out loud. In a group setting, this behaviour can give other people the impression that they are weak or lack of confidence. And it does annoy the hell out of people especially when it’s time sensitive.

But it’s really not anyone’s fault. Everyone’s different and the way their brain process information is different too.

This is why it’s important for one to understand decisions making for some people can be very stressful and slow, especially if the person need to check with themselves on how they feel about different option. And they don’t commit to anything until they are very sure the decision makes them feel good and don’t give them any major regrets.

Maybe you might wonder which part does feelings have to play during decision making. The fact is, feelings are always in play. So are emotions. We are all humans. The question is how much the emotion centre is overwriting the logical centre as well as how good the person is at pulling themselves above those feelings to make a decision.

And sometimes, it’s just that the person feels more deeply, is more sensitive and self-conscious.

Now, as you go about in life, there will be times when you have to make certain life-changing decisions. Then when you do make a certain choice, the end result wasn’t ideal and you feel like crap for weeks or months. And in some case, it may have left you in a bad place. Or it could be that the result wasn’t as serious as it was but because you value other people’s opinion more than trusting your own, you fear losing that respect or friendship.

In the context of the person who feels more deeply, when these above situations happen, they create mental scars. The person won’t want to feel the same way again or go through the same kind of pain again. That’s why he or she will hold off committing until the last minute. But if it is a decision for something that the person has experienced before, then it relatively fast.

I know because I make decisions in this way, always checking with how I will feel at the subconscious level while having this dreadful feeling about having to commit. And I have faced people getting annoyed with me for taking too long. A big part came from me not wanting to disappoint people or get blame for the wrong choice.

However, it doesn’t mean shying away from making decisions. In order to be better at it, one has to keep making decisions. If the choice turn out to be a bad one, learn from the mistake. Seek for forgiven later. But if it’s a life-changing decision, then ask for permission to take a longer time before committing your answer. But it’s important also not to take too long. At the same time, you should reverse engineer what is it you are really afraid of when it comes to decision making and then acknowledge it. When you do that, you give yourself the power to move forward.

Before long, you will be making decisions effortlessly.

The moment you realise…

As individuals, we are all unique. We got our own way of seeing the world, approach the world and behave. Due to that uniqueness, it can be quite hard to find someone you can connect with. When you do find someone who can, you wonder where has this person been and why he or she hasn’t enter your life earlier. And then, there are some people for some reasons just hate you as a person and their obnoxious interactions with you can make you wonder why do they exist. They just do and have their own clique in life.

And what’s my point?

I’m getting there…

Throughout my life, I have lived a pretty sheltered life and taking very little risk when it comes to my finances or education. As much as I tried to make my life my own, trying to be a trailblazer of sort, I kept falling back to making the “safe” decisions or choices because it all boils down to: how did it make me feel? And usually, after I made the decision, I feel like crap. When that happens, I had to backtrack to make another one. In part to make me feel good again. It’s especially so if it is a brand new decision that has repercussion on my life and it requires me to use information that I have yet acquired through experience.

For people who are more rational and has been through enough adversity tend to be able to stick to their guns and follow through on their decision. No doubt they have fears and anxiety of what the future holds, but they are better prepared mentally to deal with that due to what they have been through.

In my case, this flip flopping nature of my decision making process causes a lot of misunderstanding with people around me. And I don’t blame them. I simply don’t have the life experiences enough to toughen up my mind or gave me enough data points to make a good decision. And my mind never fails to worry about thousands little things that could go wrong…this is why I can suffer from insomnia relatively easy.

So if you don’t call that neurotic, I don’t know what to call it.

But that’s not to say I have not make decision that make me uncomfortable and then following it through. It’s just that I’m a little slower than most.

And you see what I just did?

Explaining myself to the world. Apparently, this act tend to piss people off. I have been told to just shut up and stop.

When it happens enough time, I have to wake up and realise I’m the square peg in a round hole due to my life circumstances stemming from nature and nurture. Most people, which isn’t a lot, I know found it irritating or frustrating when interacting with me. But that it’s all in the past. I have the power to change that.

For a start, I’m going to make a conscious effort to catch myself before I go on explaining my thinking to another person. It’s my life and I don’t need to justify the choices or decisions. No one wants to hear it and it’s not their fault. Everyone is a little busy dealing with their own crap in life. At the end of it, I only have to answer to my eighty-year-old self. As long as I don’t regret the choices I made (and I have that a lot lately but I can’t change those), I’m fine.

The other thing I also realise is that I have to stop. Stop announcing decisions I made with my emotional centre to other people. I’ll admit it will take a great deal of conscious effort not to make that mistake. Emotional decisions are fickle and can change very easily. In this hyper-pragmatic, rational world (roll eyes If it’s rational, we won’t have wars or that the stock market won’t fluctuate like it does), decisions have to be made with clarity and assertion. Once made, the person has to follow through till the end. The action taken has to either result in a success or failure before making course correction. Failing to do that, you don’t get to command respect.

And I’ve done emotional decision making for so long and often over the last few years that I believe I lost my credibility with people. It’s fine. No one is at fault here.

There are people who call me a fake news now, putting me as part of the global phenomenon just because of my emotional decision making process. But hey, it’s cool now that I have gone global.

Now, if there’s a genuine desire to understand me better because you care, then I will help you understand me better. And that’s if you ask me. Otherwise, I will keep my mouth shut. Or we can go on the journey together because I don’t understand myself fully either. But if you feel like the journey is taking too much of your time or energy, you are free to go. And I won’t blame you afterwards if you continue to misunderstand me or my intention.

All this realisation is actually pretty freeing and I finally can start being myself without worrying too much.

Becoming aware of the neurotic mind and overwriting it for a happier self

Let’s imagine that you grow up in an environment where your parents engaged in negative self-talk in front of you, self-punishing behaviours, call you stupid or brainless when you do something wrong, or continue bring up the past mistakes you made every time they are not happy about something you did today.

Then as you got older, you engaged in similar activities without being consciously aware of what you did.

And that’s all because of nurture. After all, you were just a child and your only true role models are your parents. Even when you have friends, they won’t be there to influence your life every hour of your life. So you will just learn that what your parents do is normal, therefore correct.

As a result, you don’t question all these learned behaviours. Until someone pointed them out or came to realise it one day because of what you’ve read or heard people talk about.

And you know what?

Those activities I mentioned earlier actually examples of being neurotic. And it actually leads to poor quality of life. You are never happy. And it can actually contribute to the development of “perfectionism mindset” in a person.

I know because that’s the kind of environment I grew up in. I seek perfection in my work. Was never happy, constantly depressed. Hated the world. And it was during my research to understand myself better that I came upon various psychology articles and essays about being neurotic and the neuroticism personality traits. It was then I realised I’ve got a problem.

So over the past few months, I have actually pushed myself to engage in self-compassion and self-care. It was hard at first since it was unnatural for me. But if you keep doing it, ¬†practising those skills for a while, it’ll become easier. Just like training yourself to be able to lift certain weights or to run a marathon.

And it took me a while before I was able to catch myself before I engage in such behaviours. And these days, I can see my mind doing all the weird negative self-talks and punishment-type thinkings. But I will myself not to act on them. I simply acknowledge those thoughts and then push myself to focus on the present. Because at the end of it, you can’t control the events that happened but you can control how you react or respond to those events.

So I actually feel happier compared to when I was in my early twenties and late teens. I also recognised it’s still a work in progress because those negative thinkings and self-talks hadn’t been completely eliminated from my mind.

The other thing that I also realise is, I was actually able to focus more of my attention to creating the kind of life I want because my mind isn’t cluttered with all those bad thoughts. With that, the friction to complete the micro-goals that will put my closer to my destination is much lesser.