Curiosity is not neutral

Life can be a string of unnoticeable moments.

That’s why we compel our eyes to see.

The secret to paying attention is being inquisitive.

Not just asking questions, but seeking a different perspective.

People act like each other on the surface but deep down they are unique. They know how to intuitively think for themselves.

It is impression that cages the person. It is expression that unleashes the individual.

The courage of our convictions opens the gate to opportunity, allowing for more information to pass through.

Curiosity is not neutral

Once the switch is turned, the entire world becomes our oyster.

A reminder about life from a poem by Roger Key:

“Hokusai says Look carefully.

He says pay attention, notice.

He says keep looking, stay curious.

He says there is no end to seeing.

He says Look forward to getting old.

He says keep changing,

you just get more of who you really are.

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Stuck on autopilot

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Do you ever ask what happened to the day that just past?

We often carry on throughout the day without thinking about our actions.

We tune out of our existence, and we turn into robots, competent without comprehension. Said writer and philosopher Colin Wilson: “The more I allow the robot to take over my life—that is, the more I live passively—the less real I feel.”

On the flip side, one can also be too mystic, excessively absorbed into the occult.


Reality is too sober

There are some things worth being awake for and others being drunk on habit. Even the routine — doing the dishes, going for a walk — can excite the deepest thinking. Meanwhile, overthinking like anxiously driving a car stresses one into accidents. Thinking how to run will trip you up.

If you can learn how to flow forward, the world becomes less sober and gamelike.

Chaos and the cosmos goad unpredictability and order, a pendulum that hangs in the balance only by staying awake while being at peace.

We can only control the whims of the market if we control our own attention, values, and beliefs.

Yet, we let go. We enroll in life, maybe even live a little.

Faith can move mountains

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Photo by Kristopher Roller

“There is a positive correlation between the fear of death and the sense of unlived life,” writes Oliver Burkeman in The Antidote.

Futuring is a tough business. We toggle between our present number of choices along with desires and goals that reinforce the prioritization of time.

Knowing that we can’t do it all, most people reach for what’s most immediately accessible and end up regretting about what could be. They stifle themselves in exchange for feeling ‘safe.’

For others, death compels action. Their gut instinct refuses to accept standing still and succumb to mediocrity. Yet, their expedition may incorrectly rest in jealousy, a fear of missing out, rather than chasing a purpose.


Faith in the unseen

Our vocation chooses us. We grade our impact by how much we cling to that sense of priority rather than chasing other people’s dreams.

In reality, there is nothing out there that will make us fulfilled forever. But the attempt to cultivate happiness by pursuing what’s meaningful remains a noble attempt to maximize our time on Earth.

There is no formula

Photo by Wells Baum

If you knew how your life would end up, would you want to know?

Some of us want to skip to the finish line, fast-forward to the end of our own movie. Some of want to follow the herd and loop around the racetrack in predictable mediocrity because it feels safe. Others prefer to embrace life’s uncertainty with healthy doses of optimism and doubt.

We already know what calls us. Vocation chooses us; we must follow that instinct and see it where it leads.


Patience is a means to progress. Rome wasn’t built in a day, nor should we skip it to run to Paris. Life ebbs and flows, like a sine wave.

Fragility and ignorance are strengths; they ensure we don’t skip any steps along the way. As John Berger wrote, “You can plan events, but if they go according to your plan they are not events.”

Like a planted seed, we are stuck in the roots of imagination with everywhere to go. The maze, frustratingly fascinating, goads a search for meaning. Lost and found is precisely the point.

Seneca: On the Shortness of Life

9BB1y2EOqUgfERCMn“You are living as if destined to live for ever; your own frailty never occurs to you; you don’t notice how much time has already passed, but squander it as though you had a full and overflowing supply — though all the while that very day which you are devoting to somebody or something may be your last. You act like mortals in all that you fear, and like immortals in all that you desire… How late it is to begin really to live just when life must end! How stupid to forget our mortality, and put off sensible plans to our fiftieth and sixtieth years, aiming to begin life from a point at which few have arrived!”

On the Shortness of Life: Life Is Long if You Know How to Use It by Seneca

Martin Luther King Jr. echoed this sentiment when he said: “This ‘Wait!’ has almost always meant ‘Never.’”

The only time is now. Don’t waste it.

Doubt your fears

Photo by Wells Baum

Depower them. Calm them with their own doubt.

Fears are the mind killer. They taunt the lizard brain into fight or flight. They thrive on ‘what if’ scenarios that haunt the imagination. There are no limits to what the mind can fabricate.

But the head is psychologically safe, psychologically sound.

Fright tries to wrestle with human insecurity and scratch away the varnish of bravery.

Can you endure the storm?

Fears are in their very nature abstract. Face them in their stark simplicity and they lose potency.

What’s your Everest?

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Photo by Theodor Lundqvist

What’s your Everest? What is the one event you’ve been training for that would justify all your hard work?

Everyone’s got their Everest — that one far-reaching goal that takes everything out of them to get it.

Of course, there’s no guarantee of success but you have to be willing to go forward anyway.

Both failure and success share the same result: they take you places you wouldn’t have achieved through idleness. Even false starts produce traces of data and contain lessons in disguise.

Remember to be kind to yourself and others along the way. As Neale Donald Walsch observes, “The struggle ends when the gratitude begins.”

Anything worth fighting for disrupts your life. With the right attitude, it also improves it.

 

In terms of experience

Photo by Wells Baum
Photo by Wells Baum

You can study, analyze, and download all the information in the world but it means nothing without action.

The only true hack is the experience. The courage of your convictions, of choosing yourself, helps put the bones in the goose that stockpile many lives.

When you negotiate with your surroundings, it’s easier to treat setbacks as passing clouds. The longer one can reinvent and adapts themselves, the more exciting life’s experiment becomes.

Andy Warhol: ‘As soon as you stop wanting something you get it’

“At the times in my life when I was feeling the most gregarious and looking for bosom friendships, I couldn’t find any takers, so that exactly when I was alone was when I felt the most like not being alone. The moment I decided I’d rather be alone and not have anyone telling me their problems, everybody I’d never even seen before in my life started running after me to tell me things I’d just decided I didn’t think it was a good idea to hear about. As soon as I became a loner in my own mind, that’s when I got what you might call a ‘following.’ As soon as you stop wanting something you get it. I’ve found that to be absolutely axiomatic.”

Einstein’s theory of happiness

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Menahem Kahana/AFP/Getty Images

In 1922, short off his Nobel prize in physics, Einstein traveled to Tokyo to deliver a 4-hour lecture at the Imperial Palace. But he also left someone an important message on happiness.

Out of tip money at his hotel, Einstein instead gave his Japanese courier a nugget of wisdom:

“A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness.”

In other words, be a little more tortoise-y and a little less harish. Nearly a century later, Einstein is still reminding us to enjoy life’s process.

Einstein’s Note On Happiness, Given To Bellboy In 1922, Fetches $1.6 Million