The winter gloom
Do you ever have those weeks where no matter how much you tell yourself you need to be productive, it’s really impossible to get anything done beyond the basics? I was having one of those weeks and I told my friend this and he asked, “Is the gloomy weather affecting you?” And I didn’t even think about that until he asked me, but maybe that was it. Our first rain came a few days ago which was really cool though because my fiancé and I were watching an eerie movie called “Freaks” and there was lightning flashing constantly through the blinds and thunder roaring which made for a better show than any movie theater ever could.
In any case, autumn is settling in. Today a breeze was making leaves fling off their branches, making it sound like rain. The sun is setting earlier, the nights sharply cooler and I am experiencing the same struggle every year: Adjusting to the fact that I need to workout many hours earlier than usual to avoid the cold and get some legit sun. This usually messes with my rhythm big time every winter.
Solution: I have made it a point to workout many hours earlier than usual to capitalize on the limited heat and sunshine. This happens every year and it’s always a pain in the ass to adapt to as it messes with my workflow, however, it is what must be done because not-working-out is NOT an option.
Content creation is sometimes a struggle.
I always tell myself that I need to be busy, productive and if I’m not, I think I am lazy. This mindset of “always needing to be busy” is sometimes paralyzing and frankly exhausting when I’m unable to perform. It is something bred inside me as part of my work ethic and it’s a good thing to be productive, but it’s also interesting because I can’t for the life of me, force good content authentically. So what does a “content creator” do when they cannot create content? The truth is, no one is forcing me to create a video or write a blog post. The work that I tell myself to do, is something I have created upon myself and if you are a content creator you need to remind yourself of this too for your own health. More is not better. Quality over quantity any day.
Solution: I came to terms with this by telling myself to just let go of the idea that I had to create something. I felt so much better and I was able to think more clearly and the innate motivation actually started to come back (and this blog post was born)! So sometimes, the best thing to do is to do nothing. There’s a great saying when it comes to trading that applies to life in general, “If you don’t know what to do, do nothing.”
On the flip side… you will never always be motivated, so you have to be disciplined, too!
Sometimes you cannot just wait for the motivation to come. This is doubly important when it comes to taking care of your physical health. If I waited for the motivation to come to workout, I would workout only a fraction of the time. The concept of “letting go” is a double edged sword, because it is very easy to get stuck in your comfort zone, so “let it be” wisely!
Endless Feeds of Random Info Rot Your Brain
Remember when Instagram and Facebook went down last week for a single day? I don’t even use those apps often and that was really nice even for me. It’s a good reminder how much better life is when you don’t have a feed vying for your attention to scroll through.
Back in the day, if you got on the internet, feeds didn’t exist. Instead, you would search for what you wanted and you’d get in your own rabbit hole. Nowadays you’re bombarded with feeds of curated content. And I feel that constant barrage of information is not healthy for our brains. It is a fact that I feel shittier after 5 minutes of it. My attention span gets rekt and I feel like a soulless zombie. But it is very hard to stop it once you start because it’s so convenient. Every app-maker and technology company has implemented features of gamification (habit forming products) to get you hooked and we have been gamed to the point where our entire life is controlled by these apps.
How bad is it all?
A study back in 2015 found that 77% of young adults said “When nothing is occupying my attention, the first thing I do is reach for my phone.” They also found out that their attention span is about 8 seconds (one second shorter than a goldfish). Since that was years ago, one could surmise the numbers are far worse.
Meditation is the antidote.
I think it’s becoming more and more crucial to just be able to sit and do nothing. Meditation isn’t a fancy thing. No need for special music (or silence) or a special sitting position or candles/incense.
Put your phone away and cultivate the ability to do nothing, just focus on your breath, let the thoughts go by the wayside and be OK with your thoughts and nothing taking up your attention for 10-20 minutes a day. More is better. The irony is that it’s difficult to do nothing these days, despite our increased productivity and efficiency. I fell out of my meditation practice last month and it was so difficult for me to just start. And then when I finally “started,” I couldn’t stop fidgeting for several minutes but eventually, I settled down and it was so pleasant I reset the timer on my phone to do it for 15 more minutes. I highly recommend you make the effort to do nothing for 10-20 minutes daily. Doing nothing is time well spent.
Here’s also a video of how I explain how you could do it in brief moments throughout the day:
And if you’re looking for a breathing technique to perform, this is my favorite:
Money, money money, must be funny, in a rich mans world. (Hint: It’s irrelevant)
For most of my 20’s I always had some credit card debt (like a typical American) and it was always so disheartening. I made a push to pay it off eventually (transfer as much as you can to a low interest rate loan and prioritize paying off the highest interest one as much as possible) and when I finally got the debt down to zero, I remember I felt elation for the day I made my final payment. It was a great moment. But I will never forget what happened soon after: I realized my life didn’t really change in anyway. The worry about the debt was always taking space in my head, for years, but it turns out that’s all it was and it didn’t really change anything afterwards. So whether you’re in some debt or no debt, it’s really going to feel the same afterwards.
The weird thing is, financially I am more stable than I’ve ever felt before but again, it turns out having money is irrelevant because simply put, other problems will quickly appear in place of money problems if that’s not an issue anymore. Not having enough money is like a headache that was really annoying and then when it goes away, you didn’t realize when it exactly went away because you had adapted to the pain and didn’t even realize it.
That reminds me of the hedonic adaptation theory which is “the observed tendency of humans to quickly return to a relatively stable level of happiness despite major positive or negative events or life changes. According to this theory, as a person makes more money, expectations and desires rise in tandem, which results in no permanent gain in happiness.”
Similarly, this quote that I read today is completely relevant:
No matter how much happiness we get out of our circumstances, we eventually reach a point where we feel unhappy.
The things we had hoped would bring happiness simply fail to do so.
The problem is not with our possessions or our status in life.
The problem is with our own mind.
— Kpaxs (@Kpaxs) October 16, 2021
And with all that said I will remind you to…
Stick to your self-care routine vigilantly! If you’re watching any news, they’re talking covid19 this and covid19 that. Fear mongering per usual. If you turned off the news, you’d find that life is pretty much the same. So don’t get sucked into the bull shit! Go workout NOW if you aren’t doing so.
- If you’re having trouble finding time to workout, check out my quick and effective program.
- If you’re feeling stiff and need to work on your flexibility, grab my ultimate flexibility bundle!
- If you have a lot of questions or need a support group, you could join my inner circle as well!
I can’t even imagine how shitty I would be feeling if I wasn’t practicing some form of abstinence from technology and working out regularly. My latest video is all about how I personally seamlessly incorporate fitness into my lifestyle, so check that out below if you haven’t already!
Hope you guys found this blog post helpful!
UPDATE: I made a Part 2 to this blog post a week later!
Part 2: Read how to “Get Over The Pendulum of Doubt and Into The Flow State”