An hour a day

With most things, an hour a day will make it better. Whether it’s an hour of exercise, an hour of cleaning up, an hour of meditation, an hour of writing.

Only 8 hours in the day though.

The question then becomes, what 8 things am I going to do today?

Christmas

People gravitate towards food. The food courts in shopping malls are the busiest parts. Ideal for people watching.

I’m almost done for the year finding gifts for family. We go back to Kenya in a couple of days and I’m pretty excited to get there and into the Christmas spirit.

Til then lots of organising to do. Some final purchases, lining up some work for next year, sort out the house and cars while we are away. Make sure the dogs are fed.

That sort of stuff is what people are escaping in malls and food courts. Responsibilities and work.

My coffee is done. Time to get to it for two more days.

Happy Christmas.

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods has completed a comeback for the ages, winning his 80th (!!) PGA tournament after huge public meltdowns, divorce, multiple surgeries, and all the uncertainty that goes with it. I am a big fan. I think this comeback is a great thing.

Why is this great? I saw on Twitter a person questioning why so many people are interested and are applauding Tiger when he has clearly shown his faults and vices to us over the years. The basic gist was that he’s a nasty man not worth celebrating. He’s a womaniser and a snob. A drunken philanderer. A thug Alpha Male. But this simplistic assessment misses the point.

So what is the point then? The point is that we see ourselves in Tiger. We see a microcosm of all our talents, our possibilities, all our failures and all our potential for redemption. His is a complete comeback story with a near-perfect arc in terms of drama and recovery. To write off such a story as immoral and uninteresting is to misunderstand what being a human is. We humans relate best to stories. To archetypes. Tiger’s story has everything required for an amazing spectacle. He has been through hell and come out the other side with a new back and a changed personality. And my God, he plays nice golf!

Judging celebrities is easy. What’s rare is a celebrity who can offer us such a journey to the top, the bottom and back up to the top again. Enjoy the drama as it unfolds in real-time. I’m backing him to win another major soon.

 

Light and shade

Contrast makes life interesting. Whether it’s art, or social life or in work, having a little light and shade in the mix is essential.

Some examples – The Rolling Stones were good at leaving space in a song. Listen to the verse of “honky tonk woman”…big gaps in there to contrast with the raucous chorus.

Shakespeare’s greatest characters were great because of their lightness and darkness all in one. They had flaws. Hamlet starts off the play hoping to die. In the end he is enlightened. Contrast and tension make the art.

In my work I am similarly trying to merge light and dark of sorts. I trained in environmental management but lacked the financial knowledge that is often critical to getting investment in more environmentally friendly projects. Now I am training as a CFA and hope to have more financial ying to my hippie environmental yang.

Everything interesting has tension and contrast.

Hunting for community

We never had to do it before. We were born, grew up, and died in the same village. Not true anymore. We move schools, jobs, towns, countries more often than ever before. It’s great for experience but not for community. Unfortunately our needs have not changed as quickly as our technology and our wealth.

No matter how much traveling we distract ourselves with, at the end of the day we humans need to belong to something bigger than ourselves. We need family and familiarity around us. We need it for contentment. I have moved around a lot. I am now trying to settle- And so I hunt for community as follows:

  • Rejoined Twitter
  • Play sports
  • Lift the head and ask people questions about themselves when talking to them
  • Write regularly

Some tactics work better than others but in the absence of a childhood history to build bonds, I have to start somewhere 🙂