Distant Past

I use the ‘Emperor’s New Clothes’ analogy/metaphor a lot more than is probably healthy, but it remains the best means of showing people how my brain tends to cut through layers of imposed meaning and societal restriction before pointing and yelling (yes, quite loud) ‘that’s total bollocks!’ย On the flip side, this highlights wanton disregard for other people’s feelings and sensibilities. I’m the cleftest of sticks, when all is said and done.

If you wonder why I suddenly stopped talking to you, here’s your reason.

itsonbitches

The problem of course isn’t ever that black and white, but for the purposes of this exercise that works well enough: being quiet has become by far the best way of dealing with realities that don’t sit comfortably in my psyche.ย There are exceptions to the rule, and occasionally it does help if you can release a bit of pressure. It occurred to me, last night on a treadmill, all those people who treated me like dirt are still out there, potentially doing the same to others. Do I have a responsibility to expose them?

It’s a difficult situation: knowing the venom and anger that I’ve already been exposed to in the past for daring to upset the status quo, the consequences of standing up are fairly traumatic. Mentally, I’m not ready to do that yet: there needs to be a strength possessed that currently just does not exist. I’ve been accused in the past of hijacking other people’s situations to further my own career, which is as far away from the truth as it is possible to get. With that level of suspicion at play, silence really is the only option right now.

Effort to expose hypocrisyย absolutely does not match the reward.

whatisthisfuckery

I can’t fix everything, and shouldn’t be trying to. What’s more important now is to address issues that can be changed and improved first. Once that’s done, we’ll see where things stand.

That’s a far better use of my time.

Down Down

Weight, inexorably, is falling. Undoubtedly the second Blaze class will help, with understanding that if this weight is going to be shifted, I will have to sweat like something that sweats a very great deal to do so. As a result of yesterday however, this is becoming increasingly less of a problem.

The classes have become a complement to the normal weights and running, which means now that a) this is using my membership to its natural limit and b) it provides individually-led exercise three times a week. I’ve not cycled for nearly a fortnight at home, however, and that will end up being added to the schedule properly over Christmas. The plan, such as it is right now, is to keep stuff ticking over as much as possible across a range of activities.

If that keeps happening, presumably thinner will then occur in due course.

It’s bloody hard work, that much is obvious. However, there’s method in all of this madness.

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The whole point of Blaze, like it or not, is to shove you up to the Red Zone in terms of heart-rate. Zwift Running conveniently provides me with zonal indicators too: to be burning fat, the more time spent in green and yellow the better, where orange and red allow that fat burn to take place after I’ve stopped exercising. Therefore, anything in green and above = progress. After Zwift tomorrow we’ll take a look at the numbers, and weight on the Gym’s bio-metric scale will be taken on Friday.

YES, THIS IS HAPPENING.

Three

Day One of ‘editing my novel that will become a novella’ for two hours each morning went incredibly well. I’ve also inserted PT and a run into the equation, which means other stuff gets written a bit later than normal. It feels comfortable, and eminently doable for the next month. Of course, there isn’t anything else as yet inserted into the schedule on top, so you know… there’s plenty of potential for disaster.


whatiswrong

I was going to write a long, painful and largely pointless treatise today on other people’s drama. Honestly, there is no point in even going there, when everything else that is wrong with the World gets dragged into equal consideration. The easiest thing is just to mute and/or block and just carry on regardless, because I don’t need to see this.

It is clear why drama happens. It makes perfect sense when you grasp how complex the relationships are between people online. However, if there comes a moment when pointing out someone’s fucking stupidity becomes nothing more than petty name-calling or angry recrimination, it is time to go do summat else.

Similarly, if you’re having tremendous difficulty with your lifestyle, knowing when to share and when to shut up is, without doubt, the best lesson you will ever learn.


I promise to be more interesting as the week goes on, but for now this is full-on Organisation Mode…

Everything Connected

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The List is written and I’m off, knowing EXACTLY what has to be finished by midnight tonight. Deadlines used to scare me (or piss me off when there was no ability to write) but the ex-paid gig is to thank for instilling the sense of ‘look, this has to happen or you don’t get to do nice stuff.’ย Today, therefore, is a reminder that getting pissed off that other people seem to be having a far better time of it than you are is the Number 1 Road to ruin. So, let me tell you a story about that.

For a long time, I blamed a particular person for my lack of success. The reasons for this were fairly simple, but the rationale was ultimately flawed. Ironically, it appears that my opinion of this person was pretty much their opinion of me in return, so it transpires that both of us were dumb as rocks. When it became apparent that it didn’t matter about my writing, and it was personality that had stopped progression in a particular direction, suddenly none of it was really that important. Yet, here I am, still being affected by the same malaise.

boosh

Jealousy is a real productivity killer, a great means of triggering Imposter Syndrome, and normally those who instil it in others have little or no idea that’s happening. That’s theย  key, I now grasp, to beating this issue: those whom champion their success in such a way as to prompt such responses aren’t talking to me anyway. Yes, I am listening, but those messages are not directed AT me. It’s the whole Social media disconnect thing, where ‘friends’ only matter to a point.

There are means to verify whether this is true or not. Watching other people’s conversations might be a bit voyeuristic, but Twitter seems to think I’d like to know what two people in my timeline are saying to each other when not even involved. That’s how I’ve begun to realise that for some, it isn’t about anything except being happy for themselves, and then there being a need to show everybody else how happy they are. It’s not malicious, anything but.

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When that freedom makes you jealous, then it is time for reassessment.

Right now, mutes are useful to stop brain being derailed by its own shortcomings, plus mindfulness techniques to prevent those feelings becoming overwhelming. Occasionally it’s also sensible to stop preaching, because even if you’re not intending that, it is what ends up happening. Mostly, I’d love less knee-jerk and anger, but that’s unlikely under current circumstances. Today therefore this reminder is more for me.

Make your own history, and stop letting others dictate your own.

The Winner Takes it All

On the To Do list is to make some headers using imagery from the Italy trip, but that involves me getting around to uploading the pictures to Flickr. It’ll happen, probably some time next week when I plan everything a bit more precisely.

I have been very surprised since returning from holiday at how my perception of the world appears to have subtly altered. I’ve read a couple of really difficult articles in the last few days too: how the menopause destroyed a woman’s whole existence plus stories of the people who died in the Genoa bridge disaster (the same bridge we marvelled at just over two weeks ago when crossing it.) All of this has distilled together, and Ruth’s tweet this morning sparked a train of thought that now demands some attention: why can’t we just be happy with what we have?

It’s a classic tale: you’re healthy, can feed yourself and don’t have to worry about how normal life pans out, and yet everybody’s aspiring to be somewhere else. There’s no desperate rush to get anywhere and yet we all tear headlong into each new thing without thought for consequences. The diet that we thought was great for us at the time then turns out to be less than stellar, or the game we play is boring because we consumed all the content far too fast in the first place. Then, rather that look to ourselves as the reason for all this, it is simply easier to blame someone else.

None of this is news, or any surprise when viewed in the History of Human Behaviour.ย There is a fixation in us all of our point of current existence: the stuff at either side of this, or at points in future (or past) is very easy to forget. Focusing on now however has multiple consequences: for our kids, for instance, who have their whole lives ahead to live and are unlikely to remember a lot of what happened as kids, unless it is traumatic. The individual perceptions of benefit and pain are also so subjective that what some people might think of as the depths of depression are quite normal operating parameters for someone else.

Then, when asked on top of all of this to present answers to questions like ‘what do I aspire to’ it would be very easy to just say what everybody else does to feel part of the whole, or aspire to be in a position where you could simply buy your way out of trouble. That whole thing about money not affording happiness is a lie too, when you stand back from the truth. I read somewhere that GoFundMe in the US is paying more people’s medical bills in the US than some insurance companies. When that’s the only option for many when disaster strikes, aspiring to wealth makes perfect sense.

depression

My kids often berate me for being too worthy, that persisting in my attempts to make them recycle, turn off lights and consider the environment don’t need to be repeated ad nauseum. My husband gets annoyed when I pull the Political Correctness card… and there is the sense that worthiness is all well and good to a point. We all want to be lazy, and not worry about the stuff that is someone else’s problem. Except, as time goes on, these issues are everybody’s to solve, and inertia piles up as does rubbish around us. Sometimes, happiness isn’t enough: as this is the happiest I’ve been in 51 and a bit years, by some way, and just enjoying it has become an issue.

The lesson I finally learnt is a simple one: yes, you can arrive at your aspirations, and live a perfect existence, but what happens then?ย As there’s been so much effort exerted to get this far, I can’t just sit around in my perfect life and be happy, because there has to continue to be forward movement. Once I achieve something, there’s no point in just stopping and saying I’m done.ย My happiness depends on a continual, gradual process of self-improvement for as long as I still draw breath, and that needs to happen every day, without fail. To maintain the happiness, it has to be worked at.

radcliffetried

This .GIF remains a constant warning of my Past Self to Future Self: just because you did something good, doesn’t mean you can relax.ย This is not about points on a board or favours piled up. Life should be a constant case of reassessment and consideration: is this working, should I try something else, would that be sensible?ย Right now that means girding my loins and looking at swimming lessons, so I can finally do laps of a pool without fear. It is what pushes me to complete two contest deadlines with absolutely no guarantee of success, but the understanding that the more stuff is entered, the better my writing skills become.

Happiness isn’t enough to be satisfied, at least not for me.

Honesty

This week’s going by quite fast, but the progression within is more than acceptable. I can now do dips at the Gym (and will be going back to practice those later) and my upper body strength is… well, coming along nicely. I tweaked a bicep after Monday, but everything appears to be fine today. It’s gonna be some running and some lifting, therefore, followed by balancing and core work. There’s also gonna be cycling tonight, because London to Southend is not very far away.

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After that, there is a PHENOMENAL amount of poetry to be written, and short stories to be planned, and a lot of thought over how I schedule stuff during August. Most of that will happen next week, on reflection, but for now there’s a calm over content which is quite reassuring. Yes, there was also an annoying (but predictable) fuck-up yesterday, because it wouldn’t be an application process without me making a mess of something.ย Hopefully, I’ve now got that part of the journey better covered.

I’m also grumpy. It’s not a bad feeling, in fact it is in places funny, but to share it would make more people unhappy than it would allow me to feel better.ย The key between Old Me and New Me is that instead of just saying what’s on my mind and ignoring the consequences, there’s the desire to just let it go, without the need to make my point. Yeah, it’s a bit hard to cope with right now, but tea and distraction will make everything better.

This energy can then be directed elsewhere.

The Pleasure Principle

There’s a blog post I could write this morning about how all of us have short memories and fixate on the things that often don’t need fixing at all. Instead of that, there’s a bit of writing, then it is high time some weights were lifted, some cardio undertaken and my own shortcomings taken care of.ย If we all took as much time correcting the faults in our own lives as was consumed by the critical assassination of others, the World would undoubtedly be a better place.

In fact, that’s what matters more than anything else. Fix myself, as well as is possible (and if that’s not attempt to find someone who can help) and when that’s done to a standard that is acceptable, then there’s the opportunity to consider something else.

Life is too short to obsess about things that are out of your hands.