The Ramblings of the Titanium Don

Explorations of Conscious Reality Creation and Other Matters

Tag: SCA (Page 2 of 5)

Crossing the Bridges: Nothing to Fear

Fear is like an obscuring mist, covering each step in uncertainty.

Doubt, uncertainty, dis-ease, discomfort, anxiety are all specific manifestations of fear.  Worst of all, they come from a most intangible and illusive fear.

I have written quite a lot about fear.  Both for Pathwalking and Positivity and even amongst my topical rants, fear is a subject I come back to rather frequently.  Why?  Because fear is one of the most pervasive driving forces of our modern society.

Those in power, or striving to obtain power, use fear constantly.  Fear of the unknown, fear of outsiders, fear of the rich, fear of the poor, fear of anyone with a different sense of gender or religion or sexual preference.  Fear is how they disempower you and I while they empower themselves, and provide false empowerment to their direct followers and believers.

Crossing bridges, or doing anything that involves working consciousness for creation, can be easily derailed by fear.  More often than not it’s subtle, almost invisible.  But that does not lessen it.  Nor does that properly express the negative effect it can have on me and my psyche.

I want to be a best-selling author.  Do you know how many people will tell me that I am crazy for wanting that?  Do you know how often I have read about or been told that writers seldom make a living just by writing?  Worse, my primary genre is sci-fi and fantasy.  Niche audiences are an even harder sell.  Madness.

This of course stirs up all kinds of fears that get in the way of my conscious reality creation process.  I get the thought part mostly settled, but the feeling?  Really hard to maintain the necessary positivity to set-up the vibration for manifestation when fear draws me dawn.

I doubt.  I question my own sanity.  Then I start to look at my job history, and feel bad about my career choices or lack of career choices, and I question my talent and abilities and become increasingly frustrated which makes me feel down and…oh, look at that!  I am still not making the kind of money I want, nor doing a job I really want to do, and spend far too much of my time wanting but not working on that want.

Fear is a swarm of gnats.  You can swat them away, you can douse yourself in bug repellant, but they always seem to follow you, get in your ears, drive you slightly mad.

But eventually you will escape the gnats.  This is also true of fear.

I have mentioned in other posts that everything I fear is intangible.  I fear failure, I fear success, I fear most of all being rejected and abandoned because of fear of success or becoming someone nobody wants to know anymore.  Reasonable?  Not even a little bit.  Fear, like matters of the heart, is seldom reasonable.

Last week I discussed taking the first step, and that was putting the thought out, all by itself, and working with it and not overthinking or overanalyzing it.  I want to be a bestselling author.  Next step is feelings.  This is where fear has crept up on me, and begun nagging.

I am working on feeling what it will be like to be a bestselling author.  What will I feel when I am seeing the amazing number of books I have sold and the number of people I have reached?  How will it feel to know I am making my living from this?  And more.  But then I am met with other, nagging thoughts intruding on these questions.  Are you really a good enough writer to become a best-seller?  Do you think your work is that good?  Do you really believe you can make money as a writer?  Shouldn’t you choose a more stable career path finally?

How do I overcome my doubt, my self-depreciation, my fear?  That’s the ultimate challenge for me.  I have taken any number of steps and combinations of steps to address this.  Better diet, exercise, meditation, affirmations, writing out statements of abundance, visualizing, Prozac.  I am constantly trying out different combinations of all of the above.

My toolbox for coping and adjusting my emotions is full of variable implements.  The challenge is figuring out where and how to use them most effectively.  I feel, for the first time in my life, like I am really, truly on the cusp of manifesting the reality I most desire.  Despite issues with the world at large, I believe I can get where I want to go, and fear will not stop me.

Isn’t this a crazy ride?  But that, of course, is life.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

Bonus thought.  One of the all-time best quotes on the topic of fear and coping with fear, after FDR’s “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself,” is the Litany Against Fear from Frank Herbert’s Dune:

“I must not fear.

Fear is the mind-killer.

Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.

I will face my fear.

I will permit it to pass over me and through me.

And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.

Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.”

 

GOAL LOG – Week 16:

Diet:  I am continuing with the lower carb, lower sugar diet overall.

Exercise:  I fenced Tuesday, took a good 20+ minute Monday, and hit the gym Tuesday and Wednesday.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done, and I did some editing on Harbinger over 2 days.

Meditation:  Two days last week, for no less than 4 minutes.

Gratitude:  I have expressed gratitude for 5 things six of seven days last week.

 

This is the thirtieth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Crossing the Bridges: Taking Steps

Crossing the bridges is only possible when you start taking steps.

I intend to become a best-selling author.  While I write several different things in different genres, one of the intents of this particular blog is determining better ways to traverse bridges between these writing styles.

However, in many respects, the first bridge I need to cross is between the life I currently have to the life that I actually want to have.

I have written it before, and I will surely write it again (and again and again): Consciousness Creates Reality.  I need to be fully and completely aware of my present reality.  From here, I need to THINK about what it is I desire from my life.  Then I need to FEEL what it will feel like to have that particular desire.  Once I have thought of it, and felt it, I have to take ACTION to set the ball rolling.

The first step is not the action.  The first step is the thought.  And it needs to be more than just a random, half-formed thought…it needs to be a fully realized idea.

I think this is where I manage to get hung-up.  I have this concept, this half-baked notion in my head, or the start of what I think could be a really cool something, but then rather than clarify and congeal and allow the thought to take on its full, complete and ultimate form I jump ahead.

I wonder if I do ‘x’ if it will get me to ‘y’?  If I do this, then add this, then do this I will get the result!  Maybe in addition to this idea I need to work out how that will work…and so on, and so on.  I jump multiple steps ahead, try and work out multiple results and alternatives and hows and whys and only sort-of step forward.

The thought needs to be whole and complete.  I want to be a best-selling author.  One, simple, complete and whole thought, right there.  The trouble I often engage in is over-thinking it.  But in order to become a best-selling author I will need to do this.  But to do this, I might need to do that?  What if I do the other thing here instead…see the circular logic problem here?

We humans have a maddening tendency to over-complicate EVERYTHING.  We reject the simple in favor of the massively-analyzed, and apply that to just about anything you can think of.  Yes, this has allowed us to unravel the mysteries of the cosmos, to unlock amazing scientific secrets and create some fantastic things.  Yet at the same time, we have come to tune-out the instinctual, to disregard the signs and signals the rest of the animal kingdom relies on, and to require massive study and then proof of concept to achieve most things.

Consciousness creating reality is a simple matter.  One of the reasons we often do not use it is because we have come to accept that simple is not only simple, but also foolish.  Yet simplicity and a lack of intellect are not necessarily one-in-the-same.  Simple in this context is a synonym for uncomplicated or straightforward, not for uninformed or idiotic.

The Universe is abundant.  Don’t believe it?  Despite anything you perceive yourself lacking at this moment, consider what it takes for you to BE.  The incredible number of components, tangible or intangible, that were brought together to make you into you.  Only in an abundant universe could that be accomplished.

The simple thought of I want to be a best-selling author is enough.  I need to hold onto that thought, let it really take root in my consciousness; let it percolate all on its own.

It is upon this one thought, and this one thought alone I need to create feeling.  How does this, the thought of being a best-selling author, make me feel?  What will I feel when I am seeing the amazing number of books I have sold and the number of people I have reached?  How will it feel to know I am making my living from this?  How will it feel to partake of the ancillary aspects of being a best-selling author, like going to Cons and such?  I need to really FEEL these things, and more than that…visualize them.  I need to make them feel as real and solid as I possibly can.

I often get so caught up in trying to work out how, I never get clearly from the basic idea to the next step.  I need to feel this out, but when I get all caught up in thought I frequently am unable to feel the feeling.  Knowing this, I have a new template to work from.

First step is pure, simple thought.  In my case, it’s I want to be a best-selling author.  Next step, feel the feelings of my accomplishment.  The next step after that will be action…and from the uncomplicated thought to the deep, visualized feelings I should be able to identify an inspired, intentional action to take.  That of course would be the next step in the process.  But I need to remember that the solid thought is, in fact, the real FIRST step.

Crossing the bridges is only possible when you start taking steps.  Yet the steps need to be with purpose and intent to accomplish a given goal.  The question is, will I now put this notion to good use to get where I want to be?

As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 15:

Diet:  I have continued the lower carb, lower sugar diet overall.

Exercise:  I fenced Tuesday, took a good 20+ minute Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done.

Meditation:  Three days last week, for no less than 4 minutes.

Gratitude:  I have expressed gratitude for 5 things every day last week.

 

This is the twenty-ninth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Crossing the Bridges: Self Talk – What follows I AM

I speak less highly of myself than anyone else.  I am my own worst critic.

Always have been.  Know how that feels?  You always manage to find something to be critical about?  The one person you criticize the most, whom you give the absolute least amount of slack to being you?

I know that this does me no good.  If my plans are not completed or I get distracted or I fail to do as planned, I can count on myself to be completely harsh.  In my head I will berate myself, belittle myself, get mad at myself for any and all failings, mistakes, missteps, and so forth.

The self talk that comes of this is hugely demoralizing.  You’re a big fat failure, which is why you stay fat and out-of-shape; you allow distractions to get in the way of writing and editing, that’s why you’re never going to be a best seller; you will always get that red light at that same intersection, because the Universe enjoys messing with you; you have never established a proper career, that’s why you deserve half-successes at best.

These messages break down at their core to inform me thusly:  Failure.   You will never succeed.  You will always be a victim of circumstance.  You are undeserving.

This is why it is massively, hugely, unbelievably important that I be more conscious of my self-talk habits.  When I do not reign in my thoughts about myself, and I just let them  take flight of their own accord, it’s astoundingly easy to be down on myself, and that will only lower my vibrational frequency, and, this should come as no surprise, not allow me to manifest what I am seeking.

This harkens back to my Pathwalking this week, and discussing dealing with the squirrels in my brain.  Often, my personal squirrels chasing each other about are negative notions about who I am, criticizing, berating, demoralizing and otherwise providing me poor report of myself.  They make me feel negative, which lowers my vibrational energy, and thus takes me further away from the things I want to manifest.

The power of the words “I AM” is so, so much bigger than we realize.  I AM is a definitive statement, and what follows it describes us in detail.  The Universe hears I AM loudly and clearly.  As such, when I believe that I AM FAT or I AM A FAILURE or I AM UNDERSERVING or I AM UNLOVED or any other negative statement, the Universe hears, and will give me exactly that which I don’t want.

It is not lying to tell yourself that you are thin when you are not.  Of course, if you don’t believe it when you state it, you have no emotional energy available to generate anything.  You have to make statements you can get behind.  I AM GETTING INTO SHAPE and I AM SUCCEEDING and I AM DESERVING and I AM LOVED AND LOVING will raise your vibration, and they are statements you can get behind because they are active statements.

I make plans.  I take actions, but not always enough actions.  Frequently, when I do not accomplish what I have set out to, I will be the first (and frequently the only one, frankly) to tear me down.  This keeps me feeling low, causes me to question everything I am doing, and before I know it I am fighting the same battle over and over and over.

How do I stop being so critical of myself?  This is the question I have been asking for a long time now.  I believe that the answer to this question is how I learn to more frequently manifest what I desire for my life, and will make me happier.

I need to take an action.  This is the only way to develop anything meaningful.  Actions.  Forward motion.

I AM needs to be followed by something positive.  When I find myself feeling low, feeling depressed, feeling unworthy, I have to talk to myself.  I need to make statements such as I am extraordinary.  I am awesome.  I am deserving.  I am worthwhile.

Some days it is easier than others for me to recognize this about myself.  One of the most difficult things for me to do is to think more highly of myself, to really, truly love myself, and to recognize my own worth.  This is not about conceit, this is about recognizing that I deserve every success, and that I am worthy of the abundance of the Universe.

This has been a lifelong struggle for me…but because I deserve to be happy, I will continue.  We all have bad days, we certainly get bombarded by massive negativity from the world without – but that in no way lessens the true abundance of the Universe.  There is more than enough good for us all, we just have to work to find it.

I am deserving of all the good I desire.  So are you.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 14:

Diet:  I have continued the lower carb, lower sugar diet overall.

Exercise:  I fenced Tuesday and Thursday, took a good 20+ minute walk Monday.

Writing:  The three blog posts were done.

Meditation:  Only one day last week, for about 6 minutes.

Gratitude:  I have expressed gratitude for 5 things six of seven days last week.

 

This is the twenty-eighth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Crossing the Bridges: Taking Action

Time to take action.

I have been a bit stuck in regards to promoting my writing.  I blog thrice a week, sure, and Seeker, Finder and Clouds of Authority are all available on Amazon.  But I have haven’t done much to promote any of these recently, and generate more sales.

Writing the story is one thing.  Editing it is another.  Formatting and publishing it is not the last step, by any stretch of the imagination.  At least, not when you are self-publishing.  In some respects, this is where the hard work truly begins.

I have, upon publication of any of my novels or other works, promoted them via my social media networks.  I spread it across G+, Facebook, and Twitter.  I asked everyone to buy a copy, electronic or physical, then to share with THEIR friends to buy a copy, and so on and so forth.  I asked for reviews, because those help Amazon product placement.

I have considered what options are available to me for marketing, and in the past the only ones I looked to were those that were free.  Meanwhile, Seeker has consistently been ranked between 150,000th and 600,000th in the Paid in Kindle Store, and below 2000th in Books > Teens > Science Fiction & Fantasy > Fantasy > Sword & Sorcery (and also adding Teen & Young Adult among Kindle Books).

The numbers don’t suck, I am deeply grateful for the sales and exposure I have managed to attain thus far.  However…it is my ultimate goal to become a Best Seller.  No punches pulled, no superlatives, THIS is what I want to make of my life.  I want to be a Best Selling Author.

Writing that out, FYI, is VERY freeing.

Well, the only way to become a best seller is to…wait for it…sell more copies!  So, since this is my intent, and this is my greatest desire, it is time to take some action.

The month of April begins tomorrow.  With this new month, I am going to be taking actions to promote, specifically, Seeker.

Why Seeker?  Because it has already got several favorable reviews; it is approachable to a wide reading audience, covering both Fantasy and Young Adult; it has the best chance currently of generating post-sales income, as Finder is its sequel, and also available for sale, and I am working on editing Harbinger, the 3rd book of The Source Chronicles, for publication.

Yes, I have been working on writing a sci-fi space opera for a while now, and I have only just begun to edit Harbinger; it has been years since I last put any work into Guardians.  Still, this is my strongest work, the deepest series I have created, and I believe this is where my fictional writing career has its best place to launch from.

How am I going to promote Seeker in April?  There will be a combination of actions happening.  I will be sending out messages across social media, of course.  I will quite possibly be offering Seeker for a special sale price at some point.  I am going to research other avenues, and see if there is anything I missed before in my previous marketing attempts.

I am also working to have Seeker available at a local store or two, and perhaps offer a signing and reading.  I am looking to any angle I can think of to get my name and my work out to a broader audience, in order to accomplish my end goal.

Consciousness Creates Reality.  Thought: I want to be a best-selling author.  Feeling: Seeing people enjoying my books and wanting more, and giving them a cool world to escape to feels amazing.  I feel so fulfilled, so excited about this reality, I can hardly contain my glee.  Action: Whatever I can think of that might increase my sales, whatever promotional ideas I can come up with to reach this goal, all throughout the month of April.

I am not entirely certain how much work this will take, but the important thing is that this is exciting to me.  I am not dreading this action, I am psyched to have the opportunity to take it.  This feels good, this feels right, this feels…inspired.  Intentional, inspired action is the key to conscious reality creation, so I believe that this is going to be a step forward towards achieving the goal I’ve set.

On that note  – have you acquired a copy of Seeker?  If so, did you review it on Amazon?  Did you like it?  Because, hey, if you enjoyed Seeker, did you also read the next book in the series, Finder?  Yup, I’m peddling my wares here – but I also think that you will find them as much fun to read as I found them to write.

Here we go.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 13:

Diet:  I have continued working on the new, low-carb high-protein plan.  I think it is going well.

Exercise:  I fenced Tuesday and Thursday, hit the gym Wednesday.

Meditation:  Five days last week, never less than 4 minutes.

Gratitude:  I have expressed gratitude for 7 things a day in a row.

 

This is the twenty-seventh entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Crossing the Bridges: Best Laid Plans…

Do you beat yourself up when you fail to follow-through on something?

Do you spend time berating yourself, getting upset over mistakes and failures to launch?  Do you start to feel bad, to spiral negatively when you had all the right intentions but then don’t complete your plan?

Most people do.  I know I do.  I get annoyed with myself, and start to feel bad when I make a plan and then I don’t move on it.

Last week I had an excellent vacation.  I was away from my life, and got to know some folks better whom I’d known only peripherally, and made some new friends, too.

I also fully intended to use last week’s vacation as a rallying point to start some new habits this week.  Yup, I was going to live large, to move forward on a number of ideas and plans I had, and to really shift some habits in my life.

Reality met my plans.  It began honestly enough – I did not get home until almost 5am Monday morning, following nearly 20 hours on the road.  I was productive Monday night, and got some sleep.  Tuesday morning, I was still wiped.  But, hey, fencing on Tuesday night…which I attended.  Wednesday morning…still sleepy, my motivation was pretty much non-existent.  Thursday morning I was distracted by my cat, the one who rarely comes out of hiding, and failed to get out the door in time.  This morning…overslept, and failed to get out the door once more.

So much for my morning trips to the gym.  This week is now done.

I could get really annoyed with myself over this.  I have no real excuses, I could have acted on this, I simply chose not to.  Failure to launch, lack of motiviation…doesn’t matter what I call it, the point is that I got as far as planning, again, but did no actions.

Except, I DID take several new actions this week.  I have not played my usual Facebook games in the am, and have actually gotten stuff done, like paying bills.  I have turned off the TV when the wife goes to bed, and made attempts at, if I didn’t succeed at, working on writing, editing and SCA stuff.  I started a new dietary regime, and have been really good about it.  I have been getting decent sleep.  I have successfully meditated now for 4 days in a row.  I have been more keenly aware of what I am thinking and feeling, asking and answering questions of myself daily.

Partial success on new habits.  Is this exactly all I had planned to do for myself?  No.  But rather than get mad at myself and get upset about what I have not done, I am instead going to look at what I HAVE accomplished.

Society is obsessed with looking at failure.  Everywhere we turn all we see is failing this and unsuccessful that and such.  The American government is so obsessed with things that are supposedly failing that they want to institute “fixes” that will likely be far worse than what they see as wrong.

The constant bombardment with messages of failure is disheartening, distressing, upsetting, and downright uncomfortable.  Everywhere we turn the message is more and more negative, so much so that when we DO see something about success we comment immediately about the nice change of scenery.

If I choose to focus on what I have failed to do, there is a much higher chance that I will continue to fail at it.  That’s how the Law of Attraction works.  Consciousness Creates Reality, so if I give my focus to what I DO NOT WANT, it’s pretty probable that that is what I will manifest.

If, like me, you tend to beat yourself up when you fail, this can be particularly challenging.  This takes a great deal of conscious, focused thought to change your tone, change your normal reactions.  But I firmly believe that this is a worthwhile act, so I am going to work with that, and do my best to create better.

I do not know anybody who gets every plan right every time.  We all make mistakes, but mistakes should be learning opportunities.  Nobody is perfect.

Last but not least…just because I didn’t follow-through this week, that doesn’t mean I am giving this plan up.  I will continue, every day, to struggle to make this happen, and to have the life I want to be the person I most want to be.  Change takes effort, and I will continue to expend the necessary effort to be whom I want to be.

Can only be here and now, and go forward.  So…onwards and forwards.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 12:

Diet:  I have been working on a new, low-carb high-protein plan.  Not a diet – a lifestyle shift.

Exercise:  I fenced Tuesday.  I did a ton of walking Wednesday, so that should count.

Meditation:  Four days in a row, never less than 5 minutes.

Gratitude:  I have expressed gratitude for 5 things a day, four days in a row.

 

This is the twenty-sixth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Positivity: Never Too Late

It is never too late.

You are only too old, too poor, too uneducated, too uninformed, too fat, too short, too little or too much if you believe it to be true.  So, too, is the concept of being too late untrue.

Time is only an illusion.  Our perception of time is frequently shifting, changing, and though we look to clocks and calendars, we see and feel it to be fluid and unexpected.

Ever notice how there are times when it feel s like you’ve covered a distance in far fewer minutes than should have been the case?  Ever completely lose track of time and find that you have been going at something for either far longer or far shorter than you thought?

This is why it is never too late.  Hey, normally I post Positivity in the morning.  Today it is in the evening.  Yes, it took me all day to come up with what I was going to write about, because I have been on vacation and I am back at work and not fully recovered…but it is not too late to get this out there, and to share it with you.

We are masters of excuses about why we have “missed an opportunity” or “run out of time” or are “too late”.  I can’t go back to school, I have a job and thus no time; I am too old to find a soul mate now; I will never have the money I need to travel; I could have done that while I was young, but now it is too late.

These things are only true if we believe them to be.  If, however, we focus on what we WANT, rather than what we DON’T WANT, we can build better, more positive, more amazing things for our lives.  It is only too late when we convince ourselves that that’s the way it is.

We frequently read about the 90 year old who runs her first marathon; couples getting together in their sixties; people starting singing or acting careers twenty years after high school.  How are they different from you or I?  Because they didn’t believe that it was too late, and they went ahead and did the thing they wanted, desired, and intended to do.

This requires only a little thought.  If you catch yourself discussing how it is too late for you in whatever way, shape or form has come to mind, change it.   Believe in the power of it never being too late, of there being potential, endless possibility, and feel the positivity that this can create for you and those around you.

Finding positivity is not hard, but it does require action.  Knowing that it is never too late, you can still do things that you might think you have somehow run of out the ability to do.  When we feel that it is never too late, and we see we can still create nearly anything we desire, we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings in the collective consciousness.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred sixty-fourth entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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Crossing the Bridges: Planning into Action

Planning is all well-and-good.  It’s the actions that I find frequently challenging.

The purpose of this particular blog is to share personal accountability as I do the things I do to live the life I most desire to live.  Positivity is specifically sharing positive things to combat negativity while Pathwalking is more specifically about the mechanics of my conscious reality creation process.  Crossing the Bridges is my personal journey, and the challenges as I take it.

I have written about challenges in the process of crossing the bridges, figuratively getting stuck, literally self-sabotaging and such.  One of the other challenges I face with this is taking the inspired actions in order to complete the manifestation process.

I have written before about my great skill in planning.  I can make plans ‘til the cows come home.  Yet when it comes to acting on plans, I frequently find myself coming up short, and then getting distressed because of that.

Conscious Reality Creation involves thought, feeling and action.  For the longest time I was really, really good at the thought process.  This is where the planning comes in.  I thought my way through what I wanted, plotted things out…and then stopped.  Some of this was the self-sabotage, and some was my past inability to FEEL what I needed to feel for manifestation.  To this day, feeling is still a challenge, but I am beginning to see that with difficulty in feeling, I am also having difficulty in acting.

I have currently placed several plans on the table, some more than once.  For example, I have been keeping my Goal Log for more than a year in an effort to be better accountable for what I am eating, exercise, meditation and gratitude.   I specifically set goals with the use of that log – daily gratitude, daily meditation, and either fencing or a trek to the gym 3-5 days a week.

It was a great plan.  The execution of the plan?  There has been some movement on this, but it has still been less than intended, and so the desired goal has not been achieved.

What do I want from these things?  Tracking my diet makes me accountable to myself for what I am putting in my body.  In theory, this should have me examining what I am eating for trends and habits, so that I might make changes to improve my health.  In practice?  I write down what I consume, but don’t make use of my own tool I have created.

Meditation?  I intend to meditate daily.  Why?  To improve my mental health.  For a while I was a champion at this…and then it just sort of fell to the wayside.  Maybe once a week I practice.

Exercise?  I am fencing at my usual practice once a week at least.  Other than that, I might get to the gym once or twice.  The grand and glorious plan to get up in the morning, change my habits and go workout?   So far, that’s not happened.  Why?  Partially laziness, partially a long list of excuses, and in part because while I want to improve my health, I am loathe to change my wake-up routine and pursue this action.  I believe this may also be a form of self-sabotage.

Gratitude?  I have probably done best writing out at least 5 things I am grateful for most days of the week.  Yet they might get written out, but I do not necessarily take sufficient time to FEEL them, and to really EXPRESS my gratitude.  I half-ass the process, paying it lip-service, but not really applying it as I should be.

It is important that I state here that this is not about pity, self-deprecation, self-loathing or any such negativity.  This is simply an honest look at how I have made plans without adequate follow-through.  This is not about getting mad at myself for perceived failure, this is about an analysis of what I have already done, and consideration of what I need to do to improve upon it.

How do I follow-up my plans with more actions?  That’s the challenge I am facing right now.  I am, as you are reading this, on vacation.  I am away from my usual routines in many different ways while on this trip, and because there is a lack of familiarity in many aspects of this, I am living very much in the now.   I am hoping I can use the energy of that in-the-nowness of this to reset my mindset, and restart.

Because I can’t fully plan for this trip I am on, I will be totally living in the moment.  There will be almost no time to build a routine, so this can serve as a perfect conduit to step outside of my regular activities, and create some new habits afterwards.

I have been writing for some time about needing to change my habits.  Taking a week away from my usual routines is the perfect opportunity to break from them, and when I return home start something new, rather than fall back into the old habits.

When I am back to my regular activities, will I be able to use this reset to create new habits?  That is the plan…now I need to give it the actions.

As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 11:

This week’s log has not been maintained due to vacation.

 

This is the twenty-fifth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Positivity: Escape from Reality

Sometimes you just need to escape from it all.

There are times when you feel so overwhelmed, you just need to get away, escape from your life, escape from your routines, and try something different.

As you are reading this, I am on a vacation in a place I have never been to before, with the medieval reenactment society I have played with for over twenty-five years now.  Yet the majority of the people I will be with will not be my usual family and friends, and I will be only sporadically online and largely away from my usual life.

For a time this escape had me distressed.  I was concerned with the length of the trip, the unfamiliarity of the place and many of the people I will be surrounded by, and stepping outside of and away from my life for a week.  Even when I attend Pennsic in August, I largely go offline, but I am with the same people, friends and family, and I know the site and the area around it like it’s a second home.

I have done this before.  I have escaped to somewhere new to me, and whenever I have done that, despite concerns and trepidation, it has ALWAYS proven to be worthwhile.  Yes, it is important to live life and be aware, but once in a while it is healthy to escape, because in doing so you are immersed in the moment, and hyper-aware of the here-and-now.

Escaping gives us the chance to reset ourselves, to find new purpose, new ways to think.  Escaping allows you to take a break from stressors and reclaim your heart and soul.

An escape allows you to clear you mind, so that you have a much better position to evaluate what you are spending time thinking about, where you are spending energy on your feelings, and to see how your actions, intentional or not, are effecting the outcome that is your life.

Escaping is a temporary act, ultimately putting yourself in the here-and-now.  In this context, eventually you return to the world you departed, but hopefully better for the time you have spent in the present, more ready to tackle whatever challenges life puts before you.

We all need an occasional escape from reality, because anything that generates more positivity is a benefit to us.

Finding positivity is not hard, but it does require action.  Knowing that you can escape from it all, you have an opportunity to reset.  When we escape from the stress and concerns and negativity of our everyday lives, we can reclaim control over our thoughts, feelings and actions, and as such we empower ourselves.  When we feel empowered, we often spread that feeling to others around us, and as such can build more positive feelings in the collective consciousness.  We can use the positive feelings this generates to dissolve negative feelings.  When we take away negative feelings, we open up space to let in positive feelings, and that is something we can be grateful for.  Gratitude leads to happiness.  Happiness is the ultimate positive attitude.  Positive attitude begets positive energy, and that is always a good thing.

 

This is the one hundred sixty-third entry of my Positivity series.  It is my hope these weekly messages might help spread positive energies for everyone.  Feel free to share, re-blog and spread the positivity.

In relation to Positivity, check out my Five Easy Steps to Change the World for the Better.

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Crossing the Bridges: Overcoming the art of Self Sabotage

Crossing the Bridges can be difficult if you insist on burning them down before you reach the other side.

I have always been a fan of the phrase, “I’ll burn that bridge when I come to it.”  I know the word should be cross, but I think I’m a pretty funny guy, so I use burn instead.

The problem is, I DO have a tendency to burn the bridges, often while I am right in the middle of the span.

This is the subtle, and sometimes less-than-subtle, art of self-sabotage.  I am, unfortunately, something of a master of this art.

What IS self-sabotage?  This is the ability to destroy something without anyone else’s help at all.  I have managed in my life to apply this art to numerous relationships, jobs, opportunities and experiences.

Rather than let things progress as they are, or work to take them where I truly desire for them to be, I have an incredible talent for taking the train off the rails, and only getting part-way to my intended goals.

Why?  Fear, of course.  The single biggest fear I have faced in my life has been my fear of unacceptance, of rejection as a person of worth by those I care about, or worse, those I feel the need to know care about me.  From this fear comes a fear of failure, which might cause people to cease to care about me, and it’s equal and opposite, fear of success.

Yes, I am completely aware that these fears are irrational.  I have written about this numerous times.  Yet even with that knowledge, it is still sometimes a challenge to not let myself be overcome by fear, which is part of my work in being more in the present rather than the past or future.

Many times in my life, rather than fail or succeed, I self-sabotaged.  I have applied this to many, many relationships over the years, as well as several job opportunities.  It’s not that I put in no effort at all, I just put in enough effort to maintain things, or advance them at a completely neutral pace.

Once I learned to identify this behavior, and the habits associated with it, I have done a much better job of staying the course, and not self-sabotaging.  This is still very much a work in progress, but I can point to several times where I have reached the intended end goal.

For example, I finally saw a relationship past just going on dates and sex and overnight stays to living together, engagement, and even a successful marriage.  I decided, rather than wait for an agent to realize how excellent a writer I am, to self-publish my work, and continue writing and having edited more of it.  I started with blogging once a week on a regular schedule, to twice and now thrice weekly.

Even with these achievements, I still do a great job of getting in my own way.  For example, I wrote near the beginning of these posts I would start to get up in the morning and go to the gym before work.  More often than not, I find or create excuses not to go, and so I am still dealing with weight issues and get frustrated by my inability to get into better shape.  I expressed my desire to work more on writing and editing at night after work, yet I am constantly allowing the internet and TV to distract me.

These are, as mentioned last week, in part the result of bad habits.  These poor habits, I am beginning to recognize, harken back to my talent for self-sabotage.  Recognizing this, I have my work cut out for me.

What am I getting at?  I can see now that I need to give more of my attention to my excuses and bad habits, and put some real effort into restructuring them into good habits.  I did not realize before that they were a part of my fears, but now that I can see them for that, I can see that I can change them as a part of overcoming my fears overall.

Fear is a terrible tool.  It gets used against us so frequently by people outside of ourselves, it should be no surprise for me to see that I turn around and allow myself to use it against myself.  I may be my own worst enemy sometimes, but conversely I am able to be my best friend.  I can work with that.

Next week will serve as a reset for me.  I am taking a trip, and it is to a large degree a trip into the unknown.  I am travelling somewhere new to me, with a friend whom I’ve never taken such a long trek with.  I am going to be stepping outside of my comfort zone in ways I have not done in many years, but while for a time I was feeling fearful and uncertain of this choice, I have become excited for the adventure forthcoming.

After I return from my trip, I have an opportunity, rather than falling into my regular habits, to really strive to begin new ones.  I have a chance to face my tendency to self-sabotage head-on, and to truly work to cross all these bridges between where I am now and the life I most desire to have.

Will I use this opportunity to my advantage, or continue to allow my bad habits to dominate?  That is the question before me.  I alone can answer it.

Thanks for continuing to read my ramblings.  You may not know it, but I thoroughly appreciate having you out there, reading along.   As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 10:

Diet:  I am still being mindful about what and how much I am eating.

Exercise: One day of fencing, one day going up and down a LOT of stairs.

Writing:  The three blogs got written.

Meditation:  None.

Gratitude: I wrote out 5 things two days last week.

 

This is the twenty-fourth entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

Crossing the Bridges: Getting to the Other Side

I can see across the bridge.  So how come it feels like I will never get to the other side?

Look familiar?  I don’t know anyone who has not dealt with this sort of thing.  You know where you want to go, you’ve a pretty good idea how to get there, you are on your way…yet it seems like you will never manage to arrive.

The metaphor of Crossing the Bridges can feel very literal at times.  I am where I am now, I was there yesterday, and I see where I want and need to be tomorrow.  Equally as real is the frustration over the perception of the inability to arrive where you intend to.

Knowing all of this, what can I do to help myself reach the other side of the bridge?  The short answer is to start feeling how it will feel to arrive.

This is, of course, frequently easier said than done.  I find that as much as I know how this works, and I am clear on the mechanics of it, I nevertheless struggle to see the world I consider ahead of me in the now.

It is for this reason that I get stuck, and from there get frustrated about my life.  I have a plan, I have a vision and bridges to cross and goals, and yet I never manage to reach them.  Why?  Because I always see them ahead of me, forthcoming, eventual…and not in the here and now, already accomplished and won.

I keep returning to this point because I still do not fully grasp it.  I know from experience how this works, I know that this can be used to manifest much awesomeness, and yet I still find myself struggling to shift my mindset and to think about and feel what I want to achieve as though it is done.

A lot of this is focus related.  I am aware that I suffer from an acute case of what I call ADOS – Attention Deficit Ooooooooooooo, Shiny! Syndrome.  I see something, I give it some attention…and then almost without knowing it my focus scatters, and I am looking at something else.

Some of this is the result of poor habits.  I allow myself to get overwhelmed, rather than chunk down activities so that they get done in smaller blocks and spurts, and instead get distracted.  I watch TV, I goof off online, I just let my mind wander to…whatever.  Instead of using the time I have more effectively, I fritter much of it away on pointless endeavors.

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That’s not to say there is entirely no value in distractions.  Life is too ridiculous to be constantly taken seriously.  We need breaks, we need distractions, we need to allow ourselves to relax and get chill.  Of course, what’s more complex is when one distraction leads to another, and the distraction gets all my attention and focus.

Right now, Politics is a pretty massive distraction for me.  I am deeply distressed by a great deal of what is happening here in the USA, not to mention other issues around the world.  I strive to do my part to effect change, but it is far too easy to let the situation get control of my time, attention and energy.  This, in turn, does nothing positive to my mindset, making me angry, frustrated, and otherwise discontent that I can only do so much to alter things.

Major distraction.  This, along the way, keeps my focus and attention away from what I want to work on.  It’s hard to manifest the life I desire when I am frequently giving my attention to things I really DON’T want.

What this tells me is that I need to make some fundamental changes to my habits.  I have been attempting to do this for a while now, but not with enough intention and actions.

This brings up probably the worst habit I have.  Often, rather than really put in the work I know I need to do, I will half-ass it.  My ambition only goes so far, before it peters out, and I continue to give it effort, but not all that I should.  I got through most of my education this way, to be perfectly honest.  Just a small amount more energy and effort and I could have had a far more impressive GPA.  I do not fully apply myself, and while my work may be good, it could still be much better.

This is, in part, a matter of self-sabotage.  Due to my twin fears of both success and failure, I subconsciously step back when I should step-up, because I am afraid that if I give it my all and succeed or fail I will somehow suffer.  If I do merely a sufficient effort, there is less pressure to succeed or fail, which is another factor in what holds me back from manifesting my goals.

I have to give this my all.  I need to strive to put more energy into my goals, and not to let myself get distracted or self-sabotage.  I have habits in need of changing, and I know what they are and where to begin.  I will strive to better chunk-down my time, so that I give the work I want to do more focus, and I will take a closer look at my bad habits, and work on replacing them with better ones.

This will be another interesting challenge.  Thanks for reading along.  I will keep you abreast of my progress.  As always, thank you for crossing the bridges between my worlds with me!

 

GOAL LOG – Week 9:

Diet:  I am being more mindful about what and how much I am eating.

Exercise: Two days of fencing, one at the gym.

Writing:  The three blogs got written, but I got started on editing Harbinger over 2 days.

Meditation:  I meditated 1 days last week for about 8 minutes.

Gratitude: I wrote out 5 things four days last week.

 

This is the twenty-third entry of my personal journey, the Crossing the Bridges series.  My collectively published writing can be found here.

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