Day Thirty Eight: Adapting

Good morning.

Here’s a big update regarding my goal experiments:

notenoughtimeFirst off, I’ve taken on way too much and it is clear to me that I will need to add new habits more slowly. Daily blogging is taking up more time in the morning than I expected, which is throwing off a morning routine because I’m spending time blogging and then before I know it, I have to leave for work, without having done QiGong or meditation. Then there’s another unexpected problem. Waking up earlier in the morning is leaving me exhausted in the evenings, which seems be made worse by the tiredness and fatigue that also comes with quitting smoking. I’ve been unable to unleash the power of the day off (Wednesdays) because I’ve been working voluntary overtime every Wednesday to work through the Dave Ramsey goals.

So, I’m going to simplify the morning routine. So far, I’m getting up early without a problem. Going through Self-Mastery: Personal Empowerment for Creating the Life You Desire, I feel that I have mastered getting up early. Starting tomorrow, I will walk for 10 minutes every morning after waking up. Then, I do my bathroom routine and write my daily blog. If I have time, I can do QiGong and/or meditation, but I don’t have to right now. After I have mastered walking for 10 minutes every morning as a daily habit, I will add meditation, and so on.

Other problems. I’ve started the Couch to 5K running program, a book writing project, and spending 15 minutes per day looking for work. Those things have been messed up by some recent unexpected issues, like dealing with car problems and exhaustion from quitting smoking, etc. I’m going to keep trying on those things, for now. Maybe it was just a bad week, or maybe I’m trying to do too much. I’ll experiment with that for a couple days and see what happens.

For the last two days, I’ve gone over my Workview and my Lifeview, as instructed in Chapter Two of Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life. Today, I will see how the two views are integrated.

  • Where do your views on work and life complement each other?
  • Where do they clash?
  • Does one drive the other? How?

My views complement each other in the following ways: I sell shoes and attire. I am not selling drugs, alcohol, weapons, harmful products, etc. and to the best of my knowledge, my employer is not engaged in the exploitation or abuse of human beings. I do not steal from my employer or engage in unethical behavior while on the job. I don’t engage in drama, gossip, or slander of my coworkers. My creative work (playing in bands and writing) complements my lifeview because I am closer to being my authentic self, a creative person, which I have difficulty being at my day job.

The only clash I really see is my immediate need to make a living has clashed with pursuing my real calling. For the most part, that is outside my control. I have been employed by unethical companies in the past, and turned a blind eye because I needed a paycheck.

My workview drives my lifeview, I think. Without paying work, I’m at a survival level and cannot think about God, the universe, ethics, personal fulfillment, etc. It was no accident that religions sprang up around the time humans developed agriculture. They were being fed, things were going well, and they could think about their higher purpose after the basic needs were met.

Deng Ming-Dao on Adapting:

Heaven embraces the horizon.
No matter how jagged the profile,
The sky faithfully conforms. 

He says the sky always meets the horizon, no matter what changes are in the earth and sky, like clouds, mountains, buildings, etc. The relationship between the sky and the horizon is always the same. Whatever circumstances life presents to us, we must adapt to the times, whether the situation is good or bad. Resistance is useless, he says. Being flexible and constantly adapting to the times is one of the secret of Tao. That is “perfect conformity with life”.

The Daily Stoic: Fear is a Self Fulfilling Prophecy

It occurred to me this morning just how much Ryan Holiday writes like his mentor, James Greene. There is a lesson for the day, backed up by some story from history, and an explanation that sounds like a strategist talking to you. Today, he quotes Seneca: “Many are harmed by fear itself, and many may have come to their fate while dreading fate.” The key thing that Holiday says here is “The combination of power, fear, and mania can be deadly”. An example he gives is a manager who becomes convinced of mismanagement, so he micromanages, which makes him the source of the mismanagement. Fearing mismanagement, he causes mismanagement while trying prevent mismanagement! His advice: If you are afraid of a bad outcome: If you don’t control your impulses, if you lose your self-control, you may be the source of the disaster you are afraid of. 

Tonight, I’m going hiking at Iroquois Park in Louisville with my Meetup group after work. Tomorrow, I will work through Chapter 3 of Designing Your Life.

B.G.

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