A phrase that stuck in my head today:don’t focus on how to do it, but for who, or with you, you will do it.
It’s easy to blame, to consider the obstacles, to talk about how hard life is.
It’s harder to live it, to change it, to work in spite of everything, to show up and have the courage to do your thing.
Each day, ignoring each wall, each problem, finding a workaround to all the madness, the fear, the will to be lazy.
There are things you can buy for cheap that are worth more and things that you buy for cheap that seems to be cheap, but they are in fact more expensive than others.
It’s hard to realize which one belongs to the right category, the only way is to test, even the common, even the simple, even the extreme.
Today me and my GF went to find a dear friend who also happens to be one of those people that always has a catchy phrase ready for you.
One of the oldest he gave us was “we’re made of the things we love”.
Today we went visiting him to talk about our wedding and he gave us another phrase which sounded like this
“In life you have 10 closed doors. The first 3 can be opened with 2 virtues”
The virtues are Humility and kindness. The trick is that in fact all the doors in the story can be opened with these 2 virtues.
Would the phrase be catchy if he told us
“In life you have 10 closed doors, and you can open all of them with 2 virtues”.
Nope, the negative space in the story adds magic, and even though in the end this is a trick, it’s a great one.
Couple of days ago a friend and I were talking. He was quite stressed because of work and I joyfully asked him what was going on.
He said he started having some signs of excessive stress. Pain in some parts of the body that wasn’t going away.
He asked me the secret to be like me.
I think that what he meant was to be serene like me, because, honestly, I struggle with life much like anyone else. I get angry, I lose my way and make bad decisions.
What I think I also do is that I started accepting life, and what comes with life, in the way I get it. Without pretending that I should deserve more.
I don’t consider myself a better man than anyone else in the world, but thinking about his request there’s something that I realized, and it has to do with death.
Sadly, these days also marked the departure of a dear friend of mine. He died because of cancer, a cancer that couldn’t be cured.
He was a great man, a man that I admired.
In days like this there’s lot of crying (I did it too), but personally I also think about what is left for us to do. What should we do after his death.
Much like when my granpa died, I thought about what he left in the world, the good things and the bad things, and in both situations I came up to the same conclusion.
I want to continue their legacy. I want to leave the world in a better state.
Because I’m sure they would love this. They would love seeing the people trying their best to improve the world, to help the people around them, to spread love.
At first I couldn’t give a direct answer to my friend about my serenity in life and I still think that’s impossible to have a simple response to such complex quesiton.
For one, we seek too many shortucts, but we shouldn’t.
We should enjoy the struggle because it’s part of life. While we love the struggle while working out at a gym, we don’t act the same outside that workout, but if you think about it it’s the exact situation. To improve there is a struggle. Struggling is part of the job, and shortcuts don’t exist.
And the other part of the recipe would be to accept life as what it is, people as who they are. Accepting the fact that the world is not revolving around us and there’s no conspiration against us.
Now that I write this I also realize one other thing: these words I write are the result of my struggle. If anyone had told me this before, I dunno if I had the maturity to learn from it.
Maybe I would have nodded yes, but in the end, without the struggle, I would have forgot about it.
So yes, the final answer now would be: Enjoy the struggle.
When I was a student I was lazy. I didn’t study until I reached that point of no return when it was unavoidable and I had to study.
This often translated in a mixed performance, sometimes good, sometimes bad, in the final votes.
I didn’t lost this attitude entirely, I’m still lazy, but way less than before.
Today I was visiting a friend’s father when I realized that we rush with people too.
We could talk with them, ask them how are they doing, yet time passes. Time flies and we don’t even care until it’s too late.
Until it’s time to say goodbye.
In that moment we try to do our best, our intentions are wonderful, but we forget all the times we were not present, all the time we lost because we didn’t care.
I was speechless, not because of the situation, but because I didn’t have words to share.
I talked too less in the past, and that led to this moment when I couldn’t find a word to start a sentence.
Yes, I’m good when I write, but that is no excuse.
I didn’t build a baseline with him because I wasn’t there in the past and this resulted only in the speechless version of myself.
Time is not precious by itself, time has a value only when you spend it well.
Make good use of your time, but more than that, make a good use of the time around the people you love, the people that inspire you, the people that left a trace in your life.
Don’t let them become part of your final rush. Make them part of your daily, slow, life.
When you’re angry, when you’re sad, when you want to buy something. There are thoughts that linger in your mind for a long time. They steal your time, making you unable to do more, to think more, to live life.
It’s partly what it’s usually called distraction, but it’s also way more than that.
Those thoughts are our demons. They’re invisible, yet they threat us, they’re powerful, yet we think they do no harm, causing our defenses to go down.
It’s hard to let go. To understand that the world will still rise even if you lose.
And there’s no hiding.
Wherever you will go there will be someone you’ll hate, someone that’ll make you sad, some new object to buy.
We can’t escape life, but we can learn to manage it.
Sometimes it may happen that you get what you request. While it seems obvious that you’re the winning side, this doesn’t always translate to that.
In fact, long term consequences are far from what you expected. It’s like when we, as humanity, try to take decisions on what’s best for nature. Which species should survive even though they were about to be exincted. We save them only to discover that saving them caused consequences and is about to destroy another part of the world.
We’re not prepared for that because we’re not able to see the consequences but only to perceive the short term benefit. The easy win.
But life is not made of easy wins.
and the battle we lose are always more than we wanted.
Today my girlfriend called a call center, and something went wrong. Something she didn’t expect.
The natural consequence was that she was angry because of this.
But why is that? She had an expectation that was broken, not because of her but because of “the system”. and the system didn’t allow her to behave like she was used to, and this lead to her going crazy.
What if we react to these changes by accepting them instead of repelling them? By accepting that they are part of this world in this new way. Because, truth to be told, there’s no way we can change them.
I have to admit that I didn’t value that much running, let alone running together, but I have to say it: it’s great.
Great, but not for the reasons you might think.
Right now many people run, and what often happens is that they get a couple of experiences through running. One of them is that their brain is more relaxed because of the effect of the “drugs” released by their body because of running.
It’s quite common to want to repeat this experience because of this sensation. It’s much like a drug, and as many humans, we fall for it. We start repeating it because we love it, bla bla bla.
Instead of thinking “what can I do to achieve this status outside running?”
The second part is that people experience a growing distance, during running, between them and their problems. They feel afar, and thus they end up worry less.
Right now, running for us has a different effect. Since it’s a very relaxed run, we often talk, take it easy. We get to enjoy the autumn trees that are slowly changing their colors from a bright green to a luminescent yellow. We get to see the stars, or even animals running free in the nearby “forest”.
It’s not running, it’s enjoying the world, and that’s the reason I love it. Enjoy the world with the person I love is one of the best things I could wish for.