You are allowed to struggle.
You are allowed to scream.
You are allowed to cry.
But you are never allowed to give up.
Alrighty, the second week of my challenge is coming to an end. Honestly, sugarcoating is not my style and not the purpose of this blog. I just have to be honest with you – even if it hurts. Well, what had changed? Not much compared to last week. The meditation challenge faded into mediocrity, but at least I started to collect tomatos. But I won’t pull myself down into the pool of self-pity, instead I’m pointing out my learning – which are reasonably powerful. 😉
What had changed?
- I refined my individualized pomodoro method: Basically I started to use the traditional pomodore concept in order to tally every task of my day. Every day I collected between three and twelve tomatos. These 25 minute-slots helped me to stay focussed. The timebox proved to be one of my favourite tools of effectiveness since I heard the word “agile” for the very first time. 😉 But the good old pomodoro technique is even better: The concept includes my hobby “procrastination” – a five minute creative break is scheduled after every high-concentrated working-slot. Finally time management became fun for me. Sometimes I extended the slots and sometimes I shortened it a bit, but there was no excuse not to finish a slot without interruption.
- Again I screwed the meditation challege. This time I meditated only three times before I went to bed (if you include dancing as meditation than five times 😉 BUT: I made “meditation” my energy boost during the day! How? When I reached the afternoon low or a peak of my “priority-confusion” (Wwaahh, I don’t know where to start!! The panic monster is beckoning over…) I decided to get off my desk and go for a walk to the roof top terrace of the office building next door. I climbed the stairs and set the alarm for a ten-minute-open-air-meditation (The weather did it’s bit last week, because it was unusually warm and sunny).
- As I mentioned last week I wanted to set a weekly goal: My aim – finishing some backend tasks (e.g. photo editing, SEO measures) on my blog uliquitous I accomplished successfully.
At the end of the day I’m still a chaotic person and I have to admit that this kind of stuff requires a lot of discipline of me. But as I can see small steps into the right direction I will stay motivated. Tiny “bites” of focussed work let my to-do list shrink. The next week(s) I will definitely continue with the simple but yet powerful pomodoro method. And meditation? As a support I ordered another book of Osho, which will hopefully provide some guidance on my way towards the silent mind.
This challenge didn’t look hard to me in the first place, but somehow it turned out to be demanding. To make it short: I failed – at least in the meditation challenge I couln’t cheat my weaker self. I meditated only on 4/7 nights due to a lack of motivation or tiredness. But to be fair – I mastered the second part of the challenge with flying colours: Finally I managed to find time slots to get something done. And actually this challenge even pushed me to integrate more of these 25 minute slots into my day. So finally there are a bunch of tasks I completed which I postponed since weeks or even months. I understood that I can achieve things, if I just do one step at a time.
What had changed in detail?
- My downgraded pomodoro method (25 minutes slots) actually helps me to get in the flow. I finally stoped postponing.
- I learned that it is hard to integrate routines if I don’t have any other routine. The solution: I find flexible times during my day to integrate a small meditation. For example at lunch break or during the afternoon low.
- Plus: I was more aware of my breathing during everyday activities like driving in the subway, just sitting in the sun, walking or even working. During my day I tried to go for short walk, which helped me a lot to stay energized during the day.
- Finally: I learnt that meditation is not a practice, it is actually a state of mind. Every action can be meditation.
What do I want to make differently this week?
- Still keep trying to meditate to finish my day – additionally to every type of relaxation I’m doing during my day.
- Setting goals for the next day before I go to bed.
- Setting a weekly goal I want to achieve.
- Keep growing!
The new year is already in full swing. The new years resolutions are not forgotten yet, but the activism is fading with everydays madness. Basically not much had changed: I’m trying to harmonize my work-life-balance, find the time to realize my own ideas, live up to my own beliefs and in the meantime I’m trying to stay calm.
What can I say? My brain is still tickling me with a thousand ideas and focussing on my goals gets hard sometimes. Today is Monday, the calender already shows the end of January. I decided that this month can’t pass without another challenge.
This one is another experiment. On the long run I’m hoping to find the best routine for my meditation practice.
1. I will work on my personal goals for 25 minutes every morning
Either if it is working on my blogs, writing in my journal, excercising or reading a book. Every morning I want to invest 25 minutes into my personal development. This implies a bit more discipline in the morning – getting up a bit more early and not getting caught in distress already before the day even really started. The idea is to think of what I want to do in the morning, the night before.
2. I will meditate for 10 minutes at night
Basically my only new years resolution is to chill out more, because I’m still stressing myself with my own demands. It’s getting less, but it is still there.
Everybody is talking about there morning routine. But I don’t have one – sometimes I get up at 5.30 because I have a videoshooting, but sometimes I work until seven in the morning at the bar. To be honest with you, I tried to integrate meditation into my morning routine, but it was impossible for me.
Also I found out that sometimes after a working day my brain is full of clutter. This clutter holds me back from calming down at night and I assume from a healthy sleep. So, instead of morning routine I will try to cultivate an evening routine, a really nice procedure to finish my day.
There is something that I learnt from last year: Pressuring myself doesn’t lead to anything besides slowly burning out. So I decided to change my approach a bit and practice more and more to “let go”. Hopefully I’m not overstretching this phrase in this blog. But “letting go” seems to me more important then anything else in order not to strain my nervous system more than it already is. So I go for small steps and I try to do the possible in order to reach the impossible.
I already started with this challenge this morning. And this blog post is the result of investing roughly half an hour into my personal goals. Crazy, isn’t it?
Communicate with yourself. And then you will understand everything better.
Lead weights are pulling my limbs down to the core.
Everything falls into place.
Gravity is contracting me softly.
My body is merging with the ground.
Unable to move, but truly alive I become one.
thank you for guiding me through my existence. I’m grateful for your patient mentoring and your steady navigation. Thank you for allowing me to enjoy the great pleasures of being human. I sincerely appreciate the freedom you provide me to discover my personal direction.
Every day you are giving me the opportunity to open my eyes and make the most of my day. Thank you for invigorating me with positive energy and showing me the beauty of nature. Thank you for every sunrise and every sunset and all the time in between. You remind me that everything is temporary – the darkest and the brightest moments.
I especially appreciate the chance you provide me to connect with other human beings. Thank you life for introducing me to people, who enrich my existence. People, who shine like the sun and warm my heart like a campfire on an August night.
Thank you for teaching me so much – day after day. Your are guiding me so patiently through all the windy roads. With the stones you place in my way you enhance my strength. Every challenge helps me to grow. Every obstacle is invaluable in the process of learning.
Dear Life, thank you so much for your flexibility and your endless generousity. Thank you for making me the human I am now. I’m looking forward for more great experiences with you as a teacher in 2018.
Random Human Being
Never miss an opportunity to grow.
Always absorb information, listen carefully and learn.
Failure is painful, but it is crucial for your success.
You never stop growing as long as you don’t resign.
…is simple but yet hard to find. 😉
Today is one of those days of clarity and I decided to post this without hesitating. I just give myself ten minutes to write this thing down and then I gonna publish it. This is going to be incomplete, maybe repetitive but for sure it is honest.
“Uli, what do you want?” – Many people (including myself) asked this question within the previous years. Within the next few sentences I want to distill the essence of what I want. No blubbering – just straight talk (as straight as a hand-drawn line by a three year old ;D).
What do I want?
I want to breathe in and out consciously.
I want to be aware of the signals of my body.
I want to carry full responsibility for my health.
I want to explore my needs and live up to my own values.
I want to truly understand how I feel in every moment without blaming or judging myself for it. I just want to watch my thoughts and accept them without trying to change them.
I want to be able to make new encounters truly open and unbiased.
I want to look into the eyes of a stranger with real interest instead of superficial curiosity.
I want to be able to share my feelings with everybody.
I want to have the time of my life with random strangers without expecting to ever meet each other again.
I want to consider every situation, every encounter, every conversation, every walk through city or nature as an opportunity to learn.
I want to grow above me.
I want to reconcile my inner callings and my actions in my everyday life.
I want to find a way to not break, because the heavyweight of this system is dragging me down.
I want to live truly awake.
I want to appreciate every moment – even the darkest ones.
I want to love life in prosperity and in adversity.
I want to find a place, where I can live peacefully. A place where I can eat without worrying about the environment. A place where I can laugh tears and cry rivers. In child pose. On the ground.
I don’t want to make anybody responsible for my life apart from myself.
I want to live independently, but not lonely – side by side with people I love.
I want to work for a real purpose.
I want to do what really matters.
What I want is truth. The real truth. The Chris-Mc-Candless-style-truth. I don’t want fake anymore.
Nobody is living my life for me, so I do it as good as I can.
Love life <3
Allright, ten days without caffeine are over. What had changed in the meantime?
At the beginning of my challenge it seemed like an insurmountable hurdle not to drink a single cup of coffee for an entire week. I was already so used to have a coffee in the morning and the next one before lunch. In light of the fact that an existence without this dose was unimaginable for me, I easily renounced. It actually turned out to be just a small change of my morning routine, but the effects were mind-blowing.
What are my learnings?
- Ginger tea and a cold shower substitute coffee perfectly. The additional plus: It is actually much better for my health. Instead of “poisoning” myself I detox in the morning.
- Indeed the monkey in my head calmed down a bit. Well, I’m still hyperactive, but my mood and my ability to focus stabilizes without caffeine intake.
- My sugar consume increased a bit. At the middle of the week I bought chocolate cookies and I ate half of it at once – probably as a surrogate-satisfaction. But I will manage that. 😉
- Decaffeinated coffee is not toooo bad. Well…
How do I want to handle my consume in the future?
My most valuable insight: A life without coffee is possible. Yes, it is. I still love coffee and I can’t deny a good cappucino or italian espresso. But the experiment proved my addiction. One approach in my life is enjoying the good things thoroughly without abusing them. If you listen to your favourite song every and every day it gets boring at some point and isn’t it the same with coffee or any other addictive substance? From now on I want to be a pleasure drinker not an caffeine junky anymore.