Author Archive

life and feedback and life and feedback and

“The things you do often create the things you believe.”
– David McRaney

I’ve written before about taking dreams and ideas and then breaking them into action steps to build to them. Having actions support the dreams.

This quote from David McRaney fascinates me, though. The idea of my actions today in this moment creating dreams, not just supporting existing dreams. It actually lines up brilliantly with one of my very first Notions posts with one of my all-time favorite quotes from Eckhart Tolle. In Tolle’s quote, one of the distilled ideas is that the quality of your achieved goal depends on the quality of the step you are taking in this moment.

Life is a fluid thing. It is very often rigidity that causes discomfort or pain. How fascinating to muse on dreams and a life’s path as also being fluid. Have the dreams. Take actions towards them. But also be present with the actions in this moment and allow space for inspiration that may well change the dreams.

A fluid, awesome feedback loop.

the river change

“You could not step twice into the same river.”
– Heraclitus

These photos were taken about 10 days apart in Sweden in Jan 2018. Mother Nature is constantly displaying her changeability. This is in very sharp relief in many areas of the world with the effects of climate change, but it has always been true in some form.

In the town where I used to live in Hawaii, there was a wet side and a dry side. And a saying — if you don’t like the weather, wait 15 minutes or go 5 minutes down the road.

With the only true constant in this world being change, it is up to us to ride with the river and steer our boat as best we can, or to fight against it. The latter often only causes discomfort for ourselves. Change will happen. It is happening. It is a force greater than any person can control.

So how does your river look at the moment? And how do you feel about your steering?

disturbing diver of festivity

In Copenhagen, there is an amusement park that has been around since 1843. Inside that amusement park is a very small aquarium. Inside the main tank in that small aquarium is this gem of a decoration.

I received hits of festive cheer and something somewhat disturbing at the same time when I saw this.

Looking back on holiday seasons, this actually seems pretty apt. There is much to be celebrated, but also much to be viewed with care and empathy. It is not a simple time.

I think that taking those lessons of complexity and carrying them forward into the non-holiday season, the day-to-day, can only be beneficial. At any given moment, I or the people around me might be experiencing conflicting thoughts or emotions about a life event, a business decision, a conversation, etc.

Is it possible that I can listen for the nuance and hold off the urge to make assumptions? That is what I would like to work on. How about you?

Still not sure about the diver decoration, though. Just as long as the fish like it…

field & trails

I am standing in a quiet field in the remote Italian countryside. I look up and see the trails of many people going somewhere else. I wonder about their destinations, about the trails criss-crossing in moments of asynchronous connection. In not too much time, I will be aboard one of those trails in the sky. In this moment, I am here in this field.

There is always movement. There is always somewhere else. But what’s happening in the stillness of here?

Just as fascinating if you let it be.

mountain explorer

If you look at the part of this photo that is further away, you might think you are looking at some small rock formations. As you allow your gaze to move closer to the area in the foreground, you see that those small rock formations are simply the tips of the mountains poking out above the clouds. They’re that tall. And that deep.

As are we all. At any given moment, we are showing a fraction of ourselves to the world. But, like these mountains, we have vast additional territory. In order to function healthfully in our lives & work, that vast territory that isn’t always seen needs to be cared for just as much as the fraction that is.

Explore every mountain, folks.

back to the buck rogers and now

As we enter 2018, we are almost 3 years past the future in Back to the Future 2 but not quite to the future of Buck Rogers in the 25th Century. Back in their day, both of these were imaginings of what the future might be. We all do that — imagine what our future might be. But it’s always worth remembering that we are creating our future by the steps we are taking on the path we are on right here and now.

So how does your path look?

Have a great year.

i choose a foggy mind

As I write this, I’ve been going for a fair number of walks in foggy conditions. Which has led me to two observations:

(1) Sometimes the fog is heavier than other times, but there’s always at least a little bit you can see directly around where you are. It is a physical reinforcement of staying in the present moment.

(2) Sometimes the dew from the fog collects and makes things visible that would normally be quite hidden. A physical reinforcement that a change of perspective can often bring new insight.

With these 2 observations as guideposts, I’m perfectly happy to have a foggy mind. You?

making the common word a proper name

This is one of the cats that I took care of in Italy. He’s an outdoor neighbourhood cat who gets his breakfast and supper at the home where I was staying as I wrote this. The owners introduced him to me as Micio. That is his name. What I came to learn, however, is that “micio” in Italian means pussycat or tomcat. So we have a cat named Cat, more or less.

A word in one language is a commonality. That same word used in the context of another language becomes a proper name. Same thing seen through different views.

This seems to me to be the cornerstone of mindfulness or of living and working with intention. The small details which we all tick off without thinking — the exercise becomes to actually focus on and enjoy those small details. Do them with intention. Own them. It doesn’t take any longer, but it does make the whole experience of your day just a bit deeper.

Whether it’s a task or an experience or anything else, do you have a micio that can become a Micio in your life?

night owl in the early morning

I am a night owl by nature. If I had my druthers, it would be late to bed & late to rise all the time.

I am also a nomad, currently wandering the world (taking care of all of my wonderful clients with the help of strong internet connections). As part of my wanderings, I’m doing a lot of pet and house sitting. Due to the needs of many of the animals I care for, I have to get up early. (In some cases, very early!)

I may never shift to being an early riser when I’m on my own, but there is something about doing it for some other living creature that makes it ok. Having the need come from outside myself makes a massive difference.

And sometimes, you see an arrow in the sky pointing your direction on your early morning dog walk in rural Italy. 🙂

Have you ever done something for someone else that you wouldn’t normally do yourself?

a snail’s pace is just fine

Snails seem to love crossing the sidewalk in places where they risk getting stepped on. (To be fair, there aren’t many places without that risk for the snail!)

And yet they move ever forward.

Slowly & steadily forward despite the imminent risk of being crushed.

I need to remember that the next time I’m scared to move forward on something. There will always be the risk of defeat. But, if I don’t move forward like the snail, I’m already defeating myself.

I don’t see the snail stepping on him or herself, so why should I?