“If you love life, don’t waste time, for time is what life is made up of” – Bruce Lee
The rare kung-fu flying squirrel
Yeh that’s right, Bruce Lee said that. I heard the last person that disagreed with one of his clever nuggets of advice got a swift, light speed side kick to the face. Bruce, if you’re listening up there, I agree with what you say… and I’m still scared of you.
I just thought I’d revisit the giving up smoking thing because in retrospect I’m not sure I gave anywhere near enough credit to it. Yes, I still haven’t smoked or even particularly even craved a cigarette since I quit. The way I thought and felt after reading Allen Carr’s book made giving up so easy that it really didn’t appear to be a big deal. But it totally is.
No smoking zone
It’s only really over the last week or so that I’ve properly noticed all the benefits. Not just the health benefits but the practicality. Over the xmas period I’ve watched some of my smoker pals struggling as they realise they’ve run out of cigs and it’s cold outside, they can’t drive ‘cos they’ve had a few bevvies and the closest open shop has been pretty far away. Taxis charging double time as well. Smart! A packet of something you wish you didn’t want costing a hefty and to be honest, now, laughable £15 or more! Ouch!
Like I said… this really needed more credit. Not me… the book. The book is called Allen Carr’s Easy Way To Stop Smoking. If you’re an unhappy smoker… give it a try.
A word of advice by the way, don’t be an absolute clown and get the book then leave it a few years before reading it like I did. Big schoolboy fail.
Edit: Here is a link in case you want to buy the book from Amazon.
Just so you know, if you buy through this link, Amazon will pay me a small percentage (at no cost to you that is). If you don’t want me to get paid anything, then just visit them direct at either www.amazon.com or www.amazon.co.uk (for UK). I don’t mind.
Googled walking on hot coals in my local area which brought up a charity site who were doing a sponsored firewalking event with experts http://blazefirewalking.com just over a week away.
Sent an email to ask if I could join in.
I received the registration form etc the day after I sent the email. Filled in and returned. Set to go.
I set up an account at http://www.justgiving.com which is a site where people can donate/sponsor you using their credit/debit card. No chasing or nagging to do later!
I then created an event on Facebook and added the details of how to donate, including a link to my justgiving.com sponsor page. This made it really easy for my mates and family that chose to contribute. I only had a week to raise a minimum of £100 but I just managed it. Thanks to those who helped me out.
Turned up for the event and successfully expanded the old comfort zone. Nice.
What happened when I got there:
I arrived to a decent sized crowd of sponsored firewalkers and we all sat in a type of function room where we were all provided with Mencap t-shirts to wear for the event (couldn’t help thinking shoes might have been a more sensible bet!) and was treated to the relevant training and a kind of mini motivational seminar.
It would have been worth going to just for that really, I reckon. The seminar covered body language and how it affects the mind and how your mind affects your body. There were a few things we did, but the best was something which I’ve read about a few times in different books but to be honest never fully believed.
It’s the experiment that shows the effects of positive and negative self talk on your body strength. When you tell your body you are weak, you lose strength. When you tell yourself you are strong, you gain strength. The difference in the strength is pretty amazing. Click here for an exact how-to for this. It’s worth doing yourself. If you hear of or even see someone else do it, you won’t believe it’s real.
What made it better than I expected:
Was well chuffed to be on the receiving end of the gratitude from the charity. Now that it’s done, I realise that doing it purely for the charity without gaining the experience, would still totally be worth it as well (suppose that’s the goody two shoes in me).The good people who volunteer for Mencap deserve a mention. Consider them mentioned… and appreciated.
The aforementioned seminar and its content.
The decent banter between everyone and the support everyone gave each other. That sound a bit girly?
It feels mega to have found it, booked in and done it all in the space of about a week because I have literally had this written down on a list of goals to achieve for a few years now and haven’t done anything about it ‘til now… and yes… it was that easy. It took nothing but 20 seconds of research and a tiny bit of action. That alone has helped reinforce my belief/knowledge that
It’s no good setting a goal and not trying to achieve it.
There’s no point procrastinating. I obviously could have done this years ago along with loads of other cool stuff.
The timescale of achieving a goal can be a tiny fraction of what you expect it to be.
A goal can be loads easier to achieve than you expect.
There are obviously psychological effects too (which is the reason firewalking is so popular). You can’t help but realise the one thing that is staring you square in the face…
That things which at face value appear to be frightening and presumably painful experiences, can easily be the exact opposite, i.e. liberating, confidence building, fun and rewarding.
Also the Positive/negative self talk experiment we did has at least quadrupled my awareness of what I think and say to myself. I think positively about myself as often as possible anyway, but now I’ve seen incontrovertible proof… I am a shit load more vigilant.
Summary: An all round wicked experience which I would recommend.
This is part of an ongoing project in goal setting and achieving outside of my comfort zone to aid personal development and growth. See category Comfort Zone and Goal Setting Project to check out what the hell I’ve been up to. I will be achieving goals which are outside my comfort zone in all aspects of life, e.g. mental, fitness, strength etc.
Q. Can positive and negative thinking and feeling really affect you physically?
A. Yes, definitely… and I’ll prove it!
You will need:
A few people, the more the better. This might work with just 2 but I don’t think it will be as effective.
About two minutes of time
First test – Hold your arm (the one you write with) straight out in front of you, palm side down. Hold it there while someone places their index and middle finger on the back of your wrist and pushes your averagely strengthed arm downwards. You will need to use your average strength to continue to hold out your arm and resist the downward pressure. Done? Relax.
The negative whinging weakling – Now you repeat the following three statements to yourself 5 times…
I am weak
I am worthless
I am useless
As you do this, the other person (who does the pushing down) should completely ignore you. They can just stand there picking their ear and scratching their arse. Now repeat the first test and see how much weaker you are. It’s so pathetic it’s amazing… is that kryptonite I smell?
The rock hard manly sex legend – This time, with more gusto, repeat the following three statements to yourself 5 times…
I am strong
I am powerful
I am magnificent
While you do this, your pals, including the one who does the pushing down thingy, should all be cheering you on and supporting you. Now again, repeat the first test and see your strength not only returned, but increased beyond your mediocre, normal self! Arm wrestle anyone?
Take away the morbidity of the mention of death and look at what we can gain by hurling ourselves forward to the end of our days and making decisions from there. That’s right, the wise old codger on the deathbed is you.
Most people who know me will have heard me say this before… it’s one of my favourites. Stuff like “I know that when I’m on my death bed I won’t look back and think I wish I’d have been miserable more often”.
This is a smart way to operate when it comes to dealing with emotions and making decisions. What would that dying fella say to you if you asked him, “do you wish you’d spent more time being angry?” or “do you wish you’d have smoked a bit more?” or “do you wish you’d have spent more time counting all the things you hate?”
I get the feeling you’d get called something not dissimilar to a right muppet or maybe a moron. And that would be you speaking from a better, wiser vantage point. Listen to that older more experienced you. Whether you like it or not, your current self pales in comparison to that geezer. You’re stupid compared to older wiser you, no offence. How much wiser do you feel now than ten years ago though? Twenty years ago? (Don’t know how old you are so I’ll leave that there). That under-educated, under-experienced baby you look back on is the present you to your even more grown-upper self.
As far as I’m concerned, this could be one of the most useful posts I’ll ever write. Even if I do say so myself! Next time you’re landed with a decision that the old guy could answer better than you, ask him. Next time you’re in a bad mood, get a quick consultation from the old sod and watch him put you straight.
So the question is “When I’m on my deathbed, will I look back and think I wish I would have…………?”
Aside from making people’s eyes water during close conversation, another good reason for brushing your teeth is to protect the old ticker. Twice a day is the magic number, reducing your risk by a huge 70%.
Cupid had run out of arrows…
To put it simply, according to University College London, the bacteria that can reside in your mouth, causes inflammation in the body… not good for the love pump!
A couple of late nights and sleep-ins over the last couple of days but the late night is more like 2am than 5am like it used to be and a sleep-innow is still getting up two hours earlier than I used to wake up normally! This is definite progress!
Since I gave up smoking my energy levels have increased and I’m sure that’s making a difference to my sleeping pattern a bit. I have more energy so find it a bit harder again to sleep at night but I’m waking up feeling much healthier now.
Not sure if I mentioned this and don’t fancy re-reading my posts so I’ll mention it now anyway. After I joined the gym a few weeks ago, I had trained twice and there was a flood from the premises above and so it was closed until yesterday. Now it’s open and I’m training again, that should hopefully help me sleep a bit earlier.
The change is happening and the formula for sleeping well and getting up early whilst feeling mint is starting to come together. There is definitely a replicable method here for people like me, with years of bad sleep conditioning under their belt. For the rest of you who have never had any problems… stop being smug. We can’t all be perfect!
“People who say they don’t care what people think are usually desperate to have people think they don’t care what people think” – George Carlin
Whatever you want to talk about, my opinion will be better and funnier than yours!
Classic George Carlin, that. We all know one of those morons that make a point of spouting off at every given opportunity that they don’t care what people think. Who are they trying to drill it into? Well next time they reel off that irritating statement in a well over-the-top manner, old Carlin has kindly served us up a nice little response to use. Don’t worry, it’s not malicious, it’s actually really funny!
You can’t plan your entire life perfectly and perfection is impossible. There are billions of unique views and morals and ideas of what an ideal world would be and how you can play your part in it. But the most important world to you is yours. If you’re happy, you are one happy lad closer to making the world a happier place. I can’t tell you what makes you feel good and how to live your life but I think the following nine tips make for a decent track to run on.
Laugh. Whether it’s with someone, at someone, at something, whatever… laugh your nuts off at any and every opportunity. Why wouldn’t you anyway?
Whether we like it or not and as cheesy as it sounds, make other people smile and you’ll feel good about yourself. They don’t have to know you’re doing it for selfish reasons, you get yours!
Make the most of what you’ve got. Not just resources, but attributes. If you’re good looking for example, enjoy it. Don’t let people tell you that looks are somehow not as good as intelligence. It’s just a different attribute. There’s no need to be a jack of all trades, just be the best you can with what you’ve got (which’ll probably turn out to be more than you thought anyway).
Love stuff. It’s loads better than liking. Love music, love food, love your mates, love partying, love your hobbies, even love your missus… might as well! Do it consciously though, say to yourself “I absolutely effing love this!” Feels really good!
Have an emotional outlet. Whether it’s some form of art like writing, painting, sculpture or a more physical outlet like sport, exercise or yoga, it will help keep you balanced. Scream if you feel like screaming, but harnessing your emotions and using them to express yourself and grow wins, I reckon.
Have a sense of humour. Don’t take yourself, or indeed life, too seriously. Serious people are normally boring. You can’t put a price on a good sense of humour. It’s a mega selling point.
Forget regret. Learn from mistakes and do what it takes to raise the stakes. Poetry.
Get back up. No I don’t mean hire a squad of gangsters to back your arse up if you get in trouble (might not be a bad idea though, eh?!), I mean if you fall down, get back up, dust yourself off and have a rematch. It worked for Rocky Balboa.
Count your blessings regularly and put things in perspective. How much do your problems really matter in the grand scheme of things? Most really don’t. Either realise time will do its thing and put the problem to bed early, or take the appropriate action to fix it.
That should just about do it. It’s a shame it only came to nine though… if I was going to add a tenth, I’d have to say laugh a bit more. Word.