I’ve been meaning to do this…

I’ve been meaning to do this…

I’ve been meaning to do this…

…no, really.  This has been on my “to-do list” for quite some time.

Updating this blog has been on my mind for months.  I first my desire to get “caught up” on my blog around July / August.  At that time, the busy spring season was starting to slow and I began getting caught up on many things work and life.  July / August quickly turned into August / September.   Before I knew it, September was over and we were all getting ready for Halloween.

Even then, I was beating on myself because I was falling behind on my personal blog.  It wasn’t until today when I finally sat down to write that I realized that my last Nameless Wayfarer blog post was in March, but I did write several other articles in the meantime for an online magazine I write for called Brink of Freedom.  You can see the articles here:

As I previously mentioned, until today…where I sat down to write, because of the repeat kicking myself for not writing…which has taken place for months.  Today, I pause and realize that I actually had been writing.  It took a shift in perspective to understand this.  Perhaps this is part of the reason that this very topic has been a big part of my writing for Brink of Freedom.

Without expanding on that more than I already have, I am writing this post as more of a “check in” post.  It’s a quick post to get myself back in the habit of writing in 25 minute blocks (Pomodoro-style) and actually sitting down to *do* something rather than just thinking about it.  So here we go…in addition to the writing above, a number of other things have taken place since March.

Besides the busy spring, it has been the best and most profitable year for the tree farm I work for.  Moreover, the farm I work for had their best and most profitable year from Farmer’s Market sales as well.  After attending the Permaculture Voices Conference (PV1) last year, I returned to Ohio to organize a Permaculture Meetup group in my local community.  Within 6 months, we had approximately 50 members in the group with a core group of about 6 people that are regular attendees and have been to multiple single and multi-day events we have organized.

During all this time, the dream of starting a permaculture-based business materialized and started to take shape.  I performed my first consultation as a Certified Arborist in August and upsold a landscape design at the same time.  Within a few months I delivered a proposal to the customer and they put a deposit down for the second-tier design package that I offered.

I also was able to work with a neighbor and the farm I manage to secure plant material based on their needs and effectively became a small-scale nursery dealer.  Shortly after looking into licensing by the state to be a certified nursery dealer, I attended several additional permaculture workshops and conferences and have continued down the permaculture worm hole.

That’s it folks, one Pomodoro of writing.

Stay tuned.

My 500 Words

The other day, I was kicking myself about how much I hadn’t been writing lately.  I hadn’t been contributing to the magazine I had been writing for over the last few months.  I hadn’t been keeping up with my personal blog.  I hadn’t been doing this…or I hadn’t been doing that.

It is incredible how things have a tendency of working themselves out in life.  While I was thinking about how much I hadn’t been doing, there were others out there that were recognizing what I had been doing.  One of my friends out there asked me to be a monthly contributor to the website she maintains.

It seemed unlikely that someone might want to recruit me to be a guest writer for their site, but apparently some of what I write is of the right mindset for her business and could potentially appeal to a group of people that she might not normally reach otherwise.

Ultimately, the point of mentioning all of this is that we can often be hard on ourselves.  Far too frequently we rely on others to point out our strong points.  We need to begin recognizing our own strengths…and then acting upon them.

Does that mean that I am a strong writer?  No.  However, by writing today – I am becoming a stronger writer than I was yesterday.  I can (and did) kick myself for all the time spent not writing recently…but today I will be grateful for the fact that I got up earlier than normal to execute my plan of action rather than think about what I haven’t done.

Over the past few months there’s been a lot that has taken place that could be considered justification for not writing.  My former employer terminated my employment based on my epilepsy and inability to drive for several months and seemed unwilling to work with me despite my almost 6 years with the company.  Since then, I have secured a new job.

Moreover, I have been getting settled in at the new job and I am thoroughly enjoying it.  It’s giving me the opportunity to work in my preferred field.   Not only that, it’s giving me the opportunity to continue paying down the debts incurred as a result of the hospitalization last year.  I came to within $500 of becoming debt free last year by the time I acquired several thousands of medical bills.

Besides paying down my debts, the new job is providing me with income to allow me to attend the first annual Permaculture Voices Conference in Temecula.  This conference follows up the Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association Conference last month in Granville, OH.  There are many exciting things that have been taking place over the past few months in addition to simply not writing.

While today’s post will likely be a “catch up” post, there will be other days where I will feel motivated to write and there will be days where it’ll be challenging to find the motivation.  Luckily, I stumbled across a group of people that accepted me into a group called “My 500 Words.”  According to the group description, “My 500 Words is a 31-day challenge designed to help you develop a daily writing habit and become a better writer.”  So…how did I do on my first day back to writing?

553 words.  I think I succeeded.

Stay tuned.

 

The Distractions of Life and Curve Balls

Sometimes…life throws us a curve ball.

Many of us are in the business world and speak of being proactive.  However, when we are faced with the curve balls, or the distractions of life, we often rely on how we react to them.  Life happens on life’s terms – this is reality.   However, if we spend less time thinking about how life happens to us and how much control over life we actually do have – we begin to change our perception.

A lifestyle of living deliberately as frequently as possible ensures that when these curve balls are thrown at us (and trust me, they get thrown) that we have already begun to prepare how we will react.

Grasshopper and his disciple in Kung Fu

Deliberate living is not easy.  Throughout our childhood and adolescence we lose the innocence we had as a baby.  These years and into adulthood, we also become corrupted – subject to the various propaganda, media and people (among other things) that keep us distracted.

While we are born with the ability to ebb and flow with what life throws at us, we are also unprepared to deal with what life throws at us.  We are physically weak when we are first born and while perhaps not mentally “strong” in the way that we may commonly think of strong, we are all born with the ability to live this way and live deliberately.

Embracing simplicity in order to live deliberately helps me react in the most efficient way possible at this time when life throws me the proverbial curve ball.  The curve balls will never stop…but I can change the way that I attempt to hit them – or if I attempt to hit them at all.

Stay tuned.

Reflecting on the Reflection

This morning, I was walking from the parking lot towards the side entrance of the hotel where I am staying.

I noticed the reflected image of the sign of the hotel where I was staying in the windshield of a car below it.

photo12

As I walked in to my hotel room, arms full of computer boxes, binders and training materials – I was thinking about what I had seen…reflecting on the reflection, if you will.

What is the significance of this, you may ask?  Your guess is as good as mine, but part of the reason I’m writing this is to attempt to explain.  You see…if you look at the photo above, the reflection in the windshield of the vehicle in the lower right hand corner appears to have a “bluish” color.  While it may not appear this way in the photo, this is what I perceived in the real, 3-D world.  Clearly, the sign at the top of the hotel has a black background with green and white lettering.  As I made my way back to my room, I was thinking about the reflection and the slight difference in color.

We can attribute the noticeable color difference to one of many contributing factors such as the clouds, the rain, or the windsheild itself.  The essential components of windshield glass are silica sand (SiO2), soda ash (Na2 CO3), dolomite ((CaMg)(CO3)2), limestone (CaCO3) and cullet. Small quantities of potassium oxide and aluminium oxide are often added.  You can read all about that here if you’re interested.   We can distract ourselves with details all day long and quite often – this is what I find myself doing.  The point that I’m trying to make is that we notice the fact that there is a difference in the reflection.  It is important to reflect on the reflection.

Have you ever heard of “The Butterfly Dream” by Chuang Tzu?

One night, Chuang Tzu dreamed of being a butterfly — a happy butterfly, showing off and doing things as he pleased, unaware of being Chuang Tzu. Suddenly he awoke, drowsily, Chuang Tzu again. And he could not tell whether it was Chuang Tzu who had dreamt the butterfly or the butterfly dreaming Chuang Tzu.

We all see things in life and we all perceive them differently as we are different individuals.  In a similar way that Chuang Tzu dreamt of the butterfly…I looked at the reflection in the windshield, thinking similar thoughts.  Am I seeing the true colors in the sign?  Am I seeing the true colors of the sign in the reflection in the windshield?  Am I seeing anything that is real at all due to the clouds, the rain or the composition of the windshield?  Moreover, I realized that none of this really matters…yet it is the reflection of the process that makes it as important as I believe it to be.  Perhaps I am simply mad…

While I must return to work now…I wanted to take a few moments to share this with you and encourage you to reflect on your reflections.

57. Not Good Enough – YouTube

I did everything you asked of me and now I am not good enough?

I went to school…
studied long hours…
worked hard…
interned…

You told me how special I was and that if I just worked hard enough, I would be rewarded with the American dream. 

The dream we’ve come to know as the decent, paying job that would pull me up in the ranks of society…

You told me to invest in my education… but I have nothing but thousands of dollars in debt and a piece of paper that says I’m “smart.”

I did all of these things and now you say that I am not good enough?

The best jobs I can find are jobs which, not only DO NOT resonate with who I am, but make me feel underpaid, underappreciated, and with no purpose, place, or direction.

I cannot buy a house, a car, or even start a family…

But I now see what the problem is…

You wanted me to follow your path, because it benefits you.

Debt, consumerism, sacrificing family for work was something that worked for your generation.

I now see that unless we follow your path, your world will end.

Who would buy your assets?

Who would pay your social security?

Who would fight your wars?

Who would rent your properties if not my generation?

We see the big picture now and we are aware of how this world works.

We now see that listening to the inner voice that we all have inside of us, in order to pursue our dreams is the true path to becoming our best and highest self.

We may be caught in debt and a faltering economy, but we are young and smart and now our eyes are open.

We will work to correct the wrongs in this world.

We will turn the tide around and save this country, but it won’t be the way you want it to be; not by preserving the status-quo with more debt and death.

We will have the opposite consciousness as those that created this mess.

And we will create this world anew.

57. Not Good Enough – YouTube.