The first 1000

I would like to get to 1000 daily blog posts. Imagine all the words I will have written.

At the low points – the dips in mood and confidence – the idea of writing my own blog seems narcissistic, presumptuous, annoying and laughable.

But at the high points, a blog seems like a valuable resource. It is a daily mantra, a way to make sense of the world around me. It is a creative outlet and a personal asset to cherish.

I have gone in waves with this blog of posting and then dropping off. Part of that is laziness, but part of it is also just the fact that I run a company, have 2 kids, 2 dogs, 2 fish and a whole life away from the computer.

However, consider this to be hopefully the first of a thousand successive blog posts. Imagine the words I will have written.

Atrophy

If you ever want to prove the rule of atrophy, just go on a holiday.

We left the house in mostly working order. WiFi, phones, alarms, pets, cars all up and running.

But when we came back last night, the gremlins had struck. The power was out, which had tripped our alarm, which had sent the dogs into a two day frenzy. Phone and WiFi has disconnected. The car was dead. And so on.

If you throw a bunch of bricks in the air, it’s almost impossible that they will land on top of each other in a nice organised wall. Atrophy is a natural order of things. It means that everything falls apart and bends toward chaos, unless it is maintained.

Just ask my dogs.

Rain

The rain has set in. The last few days on holiday have been hot and humid but now the cold front is here and we’re enveloped in cloud and cold air.

No hiking with the little ones. We’re playing table tennis and dominos with other guests at the hotel to pass the time.

For a few years we were in a drought, missing the rain in Cape Town. One wet winter and I find I’m wishing for the drought again. Fickle and selfish thoughts set in when you get bored I guess.

For now, indoors and bunkered down is the way forward. I find I am rearranging the apps in my phone for no particular reason.

The mind is a funny thing.

Children

Playing with a young child is humbling. It literally gets you on your knees.

There is a pattern I have noticed. If my daughter asks me to play with her, my initial emotional reaction is always no. I’m tired. I’m busy. It’s hard work.

But then once I process the internal ego, I accept and get on her level and the good vibes start to spread. We have fun.

Few things have forced me to rethink things like child’s play. It gives perspective and requires commitment and a break from all that adult rubbish.

It ain’t easy but it’s good bonding time that impacts me on an unexpected level.

Work and play

We went on a beautiful hike this morning. You can get an idea of the vibe from the pic below.

When I got back I had a look at my phone: Meeting requests, complaints, fires to put out all over the place from work.

The contrast is jarring. But at least with a software based business it is possible to travel and work at the same time.

I need to practice juggling the two because I’m loving the hikes but I need to pay for it somehow!

Vision

Vision is the dreaming part. Seeing an ideal future. Looking up ahead at where you want to go.

I don’t struggle with vision as I have an active imagination. I can picture myself in various situations quite easily. What’s harder is to fit this dream into your everyday life.

Thinking about the vision long and hard leads to a refined version. Why this vision and not another? What is the core drive behind this dream?

I would place one boundary on the vision you have. Make the vision about something other than yourself. I think Ego will only get you so far. To complete bigger projects might need a bigger cause, such as community, utility, risk management, etc.

Extrinsic rewards

I would like to pass CFA level one. I have already tried the exam twice and failed! Like anything this is a multi-variable problem – I have a job and 2 young kids, I never did maths at school, I don’t have a lot of time for studying. Etc. Etc. But I was very close to passing the last time.

Previously all the reward for studying has been intrinsic. But now I am going to give myself some sort of extrinsic, materialistic, awesome enticement for passing the next exam in December. Hopefully this sort of motivation works. It can’t hurt. Candidates for the prize include:

  • an apple device ( I like the look of the new watch and the new phones and the new speaker)
  • a hifi device (my speakers could do with an upgrade)
  • a holiday (after all that studying)
  • a new bed….because sleep.

I am stretching the limits with this exam, but I like the challenge and am lucky enough to be able to try.

To be chanted like the Americans chant: C F A…C F A…C F A