Building Self-Discipline with the 5/25 Rule

The current generation lives in a world filled with distractions. Social media for one, is a huge example. It’s very evident that with the advent of social apps, more people spend time glued to their tiny screens than ever before. Is that a bad thing? Not really though unless of course it distracts you from…

via Building Self-Discipline with the 5/25 Rule — Yura Namchoom

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Wandering Thoughts

As I write this, I have 3900 weeks left to live… that is, if I am lucky enough to live up to a 100. And if I die at 70, I have just 2340 weeks.

That’s all the time I have left to be alive on Earth. During this time, would I write honestly with words that pour out of me?

I think I would.

Minutes earlier, I was watching a YouTube video titled “Optimism Nihilism”. A channel recommended at my work place. If my boss knew any better he would not have recommended the channel to his employees. Or maybe he missed to notice this one video in particular. That would make sense!

After  2 minutes of watching it, I stopped. The video had just made me realize my expected time remaining on earth was just 2340 weeks more. It’s makers gave me the numbers and I froze for a tiny fraction of seconds (I wonder if their goal is to cause mental chaos or enlightenment).

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My mind seems a little troubled of late. Nihilistic thoughts perhaps. The thoughts existed since a long time ago. Only now, with increased magnitude. What I thought made me see the light was just an illusionary blindfold that fooled me into thinking I had seen the light.

Great Socrates once said “I know that I know nothing”.Yet people do believe otherwise. They think he is full of wisdom (ancient greeks!). But how did they fail to see that if he were a man as wise as they thought him to be, he would be right? He really knew nothing, but the ordinary just like you and me.

You may say ‘nay’ in dismay, or better, resentment or plain mockery.
You may agree you do not know everything but you most definitely would not agree to not knowing anything like Socrates.

But you and I know nothing. The long dead Socrates knew nothing.
And for many more years to come, we will remain unaware of it. It may surface accidentally but we shall dismiss it, in order not to stir the chaos in the calm.

MINIMALISM : A way of Life

Inspiration sometimes can be obvious like when you hear an inspiring speech that instantly cause a stir and other times it can be sneaky. It can sneak up on you out of nowhere, when you are sitting idle or just busy doing your regular day-to-day tasks.

I was watching a Netflix documentary last night “Minimalism“. Fifteen minutes into it and… it happened! It just clicked!

The voice in my head went “YOU NEED TO WRITE ABOUT THIS!”
And sure enough, it was heard.

Minimalism is something that I have been subtly trying to incorporate into my own life for a long time now. And contrary to popular belief minimalism isn’t only about owing less of materialistic consumer products but so much more than just that. It’s about decluttering to make space for things that truly matter. In Joshua’s words it simply means “Living a life based on our values”

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Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus are typical example of Modern day Minimalist aka “The Minimalists” which is also the name of the website they run together, through which they spread the message and advocate the minimalist lifestyle. I had come across them while watching a YouTube video on Matt D’Avella’s channel who also happens to be the director of the documentary that inspired me to write this blog post.

Not being an expert on the subject myself, I suggest it wise if you checked out Joshua’s and Ryan’s take on minimalism which is available on their website here.

Although familiar with the concept of minimalism, I have only just recently stumbled upon Joshua and Ryan when Matt mentioned them on his YouTube channel. As for Matt’s YouTube channel I am a new subscriber to that as well. It popped up on my recommendation list and I am glad I clicked, because not only is his advice on management and self-improvement helpful but the aesthetic of his video making is just as awesome.

What grabbed my attention most is when Ryan mentions that Joshua became a happier person because he had embraced minimalism. This got me thinking could this also be the same reason why I am a happier person?

I’ve been told I am very optimistic and upbeat about life. I know it for a fact because I used to be a not-so-happy person and pretty easily affected by the world around me. Now I am more content in life and it’s most probably because I have learned to eliminate things and choices that are contradictory to what I believe in.

It’s pretty cool what Joshua and Ryan are trying to do. Especially now, when society is heavily influenced by the rapid growth of consumerism. Research has associated consumerism and materialism with low self-esteem and the feelings of loneliness and unhappiness. Agreed there is nothing wrong with owing stuff that you like, however, it becomes a matter of concern once you start buying stuff that you don’t need or like and/or engage in activities you don’t necessarily enjoy, maybe because of peer pressure, to feel the need to fit in or as a status symbol, etcetera etcetera. Many of us have indeed bought the dream that were sold to us by society about how we should be and do and what we should have to achieve contentment in life.

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Minimalism is about taking proactive action and making intentional not impulsive  life choices. Once your priorities are set straight and you start walking your talk, sooner or later you will realize that it is very simple to lead a happy life. The state of discontentment arise when we start listening to the noise on the outside rather than listening to the voice on the inside.

All in all if none of the “isms” are working for you, maybe you could try “Minimal-ism”. 

Now that I have discovered The Minimalists I can’t wait to check their blog post out and follow their story. Also, you should check out the award-winning documentary “Minimalism a documentary about the important things”. It’s on Netflix.

I am definitely excited to explore more on the subject of Minimalism and will probably make another blog post on the same again in the future.

The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*CK

Halfway through reading the “Subtle Art of not giving a f*ck” by Mark Manson and after a brief period of self-reflection, I am amazed how this week went by so hassle-free.

Clearly, less fucks were given.

Less fuck was given to the fact that I quit my first job on the probationary period. Less fucks given to the fact I have no stable job as of now and also no fucks given to the uncertainty the future holds.

But as Mark Manson says, it’s not about not giving fucks but giving fucks on what mattered. Evidently, I did that too.

I gave enough fucks on how to make the most out of my current state of distress. Enough fucks to make time for what brings me joy. Also, enough fucks to keep this blog running.

Enough fucks to do the all the things I love doing and zero fucks on what mentally depressed me.

And Voila! Life is bliss! (Or is it?)

If you don’t already know, life is never going to be a permanent bliss. Never. But if you learn the art of giving fewer fucks on unimportant things and more fucks on important ones, you’ll probably be better equipped to get through the highs and lows of life.

How do you learn the art? Mark Manson already wrote a book about it duh!

If however, you are still looking for shortcuts, you probably don’t give enough fucks to learn this art anyway.

To simplify the art, it’s a lot like setting your priorities right- more fucks to be given to those on top of the list and fewer fucks to be given as we go down the list. Addressing how to set the priority list will require a completely different post on its own.

However, the book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey, which I mentioned in my previous blog post does just that.

Up till this point, you obviously think I am only recommending books to read and this post does not teach the subtle art of not giving a fuck at all. Wtf!

To be honest you are right.

I write to inspire. You’ll learn a lot more if you actually read it from the original source instead of expecting an overall summary from blog posts. Alternatively, audiobooks are great!

Also, I am going to give fewer fucks about the word count and abruptly end my post here.

Have a great day!

On finding Purpose and Fulfillment in Life.

Do you ever get the feeling that you are destined for great things in life?

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Are you always in a state of constant yearning for something better that you know is awaiting for you in the distant future and you are ready to give your all to achieve it but you don’t exactly know what you’re seeking?

If your answer is ‘Yes’, well my friend, we are on the same boat.

For many, money, fame, power or combination of two or all of these are enough to motivate them to carry on with there lives. In fact from what I have witnessed in all my years of living, many adults I am acquainted with play by the same rules. Yet somehow even the most accomplished ones (you’d think), when you really get to know them are utterly dissatisfied with their lives.

And then there are others, you and I included, the eccentric dreamers (maybe a little guilty of dreaming too much), who seek a little more, a little different things from life but equally dissatisfied like the former.

So what is it really that makes a fulfilling life?

I guess the truly happy would be those who have found the purpose of their lives. I have never really understood the whole ‘finding your purpose’ concept. To me, it seemed rather impractical. So I let go of it and interestingly enough half of my problems disappeared automatically. Then I came across this book ‘So good they can’t ignore you, by Cal Newport wherein he debunks the Passion Hypothesis.

My key takeaways from his book were as follows:

  • Some people do find what they are passionate about early on (you could call this purpose/drive/calling), but for many the passion comes only after putting long hours of work, of learning the craft and then eventually falling in love with it.
  • That Passion isn’t something you one day wake up and discover, but it is cultivated through practice.

The book to some extent did help provide me clarity to make my career choices.

Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.

– George Bernard Shaw

I think there’s a lot of pressure on young adults today to choose a path to walk that has already been carved by the previous generation. But with changing times come changing interests.  Agreed there is always going to be some degree of social stigma attached to those who take the road less taken. This is probably the reason why so many of us struggle to find our purpose. We follow the pre-written script that society provides so we fit in. Unfortunately our dreams don’t fit, our goals don’t match. They direct us to another path. By default, we tend to shut the inner tiny voices.

Sometimes I would hear someone from Generation X (population preceding millennials) say how circumstances didn’t favour them, what I hear is that they didn’t listen to that tiny voice and how they wish they did! And its that tiny voice I believe that guides us to our purpose, the life of joy and fulfillment.

Because Purpose, if at all I know anything about it is that different people will have different purpose in life.

The process of finding it will probably be different for everyone as well. And while you’re at it breathe a little.

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And what I undoubtedly can declare is this –

Nobody has it all figured out. 

 

True fulfillment lies in having the courage to follow your dreams, the things you are passionate about, in spite of uncertainty of the outcome and being extremely patient throughout the process.

And this is my perspective on finding fulfillment in life.

What’s yours?

(Please don’t hesitate to comment on the post. New ideas and fresh perspective are always welcome!)

 

If You Don’t Manage Time, It Will Pass You By.

For many of us, 24 hours in a day just isn’t enough to get things done.

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Many would think having some time off, to do nothing is a luxury in this era of fast-paced living. Something that a lot of us strive for but surprisingly hard to gain. Some family person with a 9-5 obviously could complain about not having enough free time. But apparently, this trait is also very common among teens and young adults alike.

But the real question is why do you need that extra time for?

Now it is true that some people do need extra time for things that are justifiable. Maybe some need it so they can spend more time with their family, others to spend on their hobbies or to learn how to play a musical instrument etc. and worse, some need extra time to earn more money to make both ends meet.

Luckily, the latter case doesn’t apply to us, or you wouldn’t be reading this article. If you’re reading this, I assume you do have time, a lot more than you realize.

As a matter of fact, not having enough time was my number 1 excuse throughout my time in University. I used to be a master complainer about not having enough time in regards to almost every aspect of my life. I would cancel out on all the weekend plans that my friends suggested.

I did manage to get the extra time but I also wasted a lot of it in the process by instantly gratifying myself with the use of social media apps and binge watching shows. In fact, I know many of my peers who save time by not going out and staying in but ultimately end up not valuing that time and just letting it pass by.

Time management skill is a very underrated skill among average performers. Everybody talks about its importance but only a few practice it. I started to deploy time management tactics when I was frustrated in Uni for having applied to too many national exams but had too little time for the preparation.

Now there could be many reasons why some people never get enough time. For me, it was mainly because I was trying to study for multiple exams (all with different syllabus) at the same time. So it felt like I never had enough time to study. But there are so many reasons why different people struggle with having enough time. Here are 10 reasons why some of us feel like we never have enough time. To solve the problem of having insufficient time, it only makes sense that we find the reason what causes it.

How I Got my Extra Time

Planning my daily schedule was a game changer. At first, it was just like a basic To Do list with the allotted time and then slowly it became more organized and well-defined. Now I know exactly how and where I spend my time. And when I have enough extra time I use that to carry out the prioritized work in my schedule instead of just letting it (time) pass by unmonitored.

Almost all people who I have met who are not average performers are very efficient in time management and they all keep an active planner.

So if you’re someone who always struggles with not having enough time, for starters, I recommended tracking how you spend your day. Lucky to be alive in the digital age, you can even download organizers and daily planner online for free.

And if you are successful at that, I assure you, you will definitely find ways to detect habit’s or actions that are insignificant and without which you could do just fine in your life, even better if you use that time to do things that mattered more to you. If you honestly don’t care how you spend your time because you think in the end we’re all going to die anyway, meaning you have a rather bleak outlook on life, then well, I do hope you skimmed super fast till this part.

And for the rest of my readers, when you do manage to squeeze some time out of your schedule (assuming that’s what you want), remember to ask yourself—

Why do I need the extra time for?

and then match your actions accordingly.