Category Archives: writing

Brain Like a Sieve

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The last post was bang on time. It was not late at all. Except I did the internet equivalent of putting in a locked filling cabinet in a part of an office building where nobody goes.

And the reason you have a lovely picture of a sieve to look at is because the idea I had has taken a holiday. Write stuff down my friends.

I hope that things are going well with you. I am continuing with Morning Pages and I think it is useful. If nothing else it gives a space to vent every morning. Never underestimate the value of a good vent. Just sit on your bed and pretend that your teddy bear is a very good friend of yours.

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He may not be able to offer advice but he will really listen. And sometimes that is what you need.

Writing this post is a little strange for me. At the moment I am feeling fine. Normally I write about depression on the bad days but today was good.

I had the opportunity to work in a different department at work. (I am keeping where I work secret.) So I have had an early start today and an day of lots of activity – moving stock from shelf to shelf and generally trying to get the shop organised.

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And now my brain has found the key to the locked cabinet, I have fought off the leopard, and I can tell you what I was going to tell you.

On my last day off I got a lot done. I timed myself and it was five hours. There was exercise on that day, reading, writing. meditation, and house work. And you know what? It felt good.

I have this mindset of needing to have fun. The problem is I don’t even know what that is and in fact it is so simple. Fun is just what makes you happy and apparently, for me, fun is marking off stuff on a self created to-do list.

It is another example of Idea vs. Reality. The primary one being food. How many of you I wonder have had this happen: I think I will buy that thing…doughnut, burger, sausage roll, ect, and then you eat it and are disappointed. The idea was marvellous the execution not so much.

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I was accused of being dull the other day. Well it is all relative. Last weekend millions watched a bunch of guys kick a ball around. To me that is dull. If you like football that is great! I do mean that. To me it is dull. (And growing up sports on TV meant my shows were bumped!) I have discovered that productivity is actually fun. Knocking out a few items on my list and then trying to think of what is fun is not fun.

Maybe, by the national average, I am dull. I don’t care.

This post was written when I have had a good day and thus it is bright. I know the dark will come again. That is just how it works. For now there is this blog post… and cookies… there are always cookies.

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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Morning Pages

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I have been writing Morning Pages for the past few days. Basically this is 500 words first thing in the morning. The clue really is in the name!

The idea is just to write whatever it is that is in your mind as soon as you wake up. I have mentioned it here before, I believe, but I have just got back into it.

I have heard it said that handwriting is the better way to do it. My handwriting is probably out done by some trained monkeys so for me using the iPad is better. I can dictate to that for one thing.

I have been writing about some sad things. The first part of the day is always my lowest point. I have looked for an app called Evening Pages – I think book ending the day that way would be of use.

If you struggle with depression or dark thoughts it might be of use to you. Why not give it a go. 500 words on paper, on the Morning Pages app, carve it in stone if you like! I would be interested to hear how you got on.

Well it is nearly midnight and I have work in nine hours so bedtime for me. And, by the magic of a scheduled blog post, by the time you read this work will be over!

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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The Cage

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I am never going to be super fit. I know this because of two pieces of evidence. Who am I kidding it is more than two. The two I was going to go with are that I am currently eating a chocolate chip muffin and drinking a chai latte – and that I have to practically drag my ass to the gym when I go.

I did go to the gym yesterday – really yesterday this time. I am writing this only a few hours before you will see it.

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I did about 55 minutes on the treadmill. I wasn’t doing an intense work out but I was exercising so I’m glad about that. While I exercised I was watching The Cage. Yep the first, and rejected, pilot episode of Star Trek.

It is difficult to put myself in to the mind of the executives that rejected it but over all I think this episode stands up pretty well.

The character of Number One is a wonderfully strong character. It is such a shame that we didn’t get her later on. I have nothing against Spock, of course, but Number One staying would have been groundbreaking.

One of the strangest parts of the episode was at the very beginning. Captain Pike considers retiring and thinks about a new career. This is strange for two reasons. Firstly since this is a pilot it seems obvious they will not be writing the lead out so why is this here? And secondly one of the jobs he considers is being a slave trader. You think I’m making that up don’t you? Go watch the episode it is all there.

On the subject of Orion slave girls there is something a bit strange about that scene. And I don’t just mean the green woman. One of the men who sits next to Pike is wearing a Starfleet uniform. Which is weird as it was implied that this fantasy was drawn from the idea that it was something Pike could never do. That has just always struck me as strange that’s all. I know Starfleet wasn’t said in the episode but we all know what it was.

Spock smiles. This is because they hadn’t completely figured out the character yet. Those plants must have a weird effect on Vulcans and Pike was nice enough not to say anything.

Spock uses the term Class M. I mention this as the geek in me loves that that was present from the very beginning.

The story itself was a little on the simple side. I feel though that it did its job well in showing what the show would be like. Each week traveling to a new planet and having an adventure.

The characters are not that well defined. Spock would be the only one to continue. Pike does appear again but the less said about that the better. The beeping thing has always struck me as stupid.

As to the other characters, with the exception of Doctor Boyce, they are not even named. Boyce comes across as a proto-McCoy. He has a friends with the captain and seems to believe in the medicinal qualities of alcohol.

The Cage is a good solid pilot. The problem is it is effectively for a show that never happened. Although this was rejected the second pilot was accept and, to end on a cliche, the rest is history.

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

 

 

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Brain and Brain, what is Brain?

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I used Twitter to keep people updated about what I am going to post here. So it might be a little meta to talk about Twitter but that is what this post is about.

One reason I got a smart phone, in the first instance, was because of Twitter. I remember being out and about and thinking of cool witty things I could tweet. I was going to be funny! I had no illusions of this making me popular but I liked the idea of regular tweets and the weirdness of my brain seemed like a good place to mine for content.

Then something weird happened. When I got a smartphone ideas for tweets seemed to leap from my brain!

analysis blackboard board bubble

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My brain and I don’t have the best of relationship. If we were on Facebook it would probably be labelled ‘It’s complicated.’

Luckily I can wrestle it into submission when I sit down to write and sometimes ideas come out of nowhere and I am grateful. And sometimes ideas come out of nowhere and I want to give myself a good talking to because they are too weird.

I have a Google home and it is wonderful to be able to say: ‘Okay Google: Play ‘Bring it all Back’ and have it respond with. ‘Playing Baby got Back’ – not a real example but sometimes what it does bears as much similarity to what I asked for as an omelette does to a pizza!

And I remember long before Google home was a thing that I wanted this kind of thing. I wanted to listen to music and at the end of each song being able to give a verbal command and pick the next track – scrolling is such a bore. Now that I can do that my brain seems devoid of thoughts and can’t call to mind another song.

In conclusion my brain seems to have been rotted by technology. It is so easy to be over stimulated by all the stuff of the internet. Sounds, visuals, even words on a screen. It is only a matter of time before we start to have little computers embedded in our brains. Resistance is futile.

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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The Finishing Line

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In the background, behind what you see, I have a secret. And it is a shameful secret. I’m talking about the unfinished blog posts. The drafts.

You will notice the plural form ‘posts’ yes I have a couple of blog posts, one of which has been in draft for… lets just say a while. Will you let me get away with that? Thank you.

It is one of the problems when you don’t have a set deadline. I have though, for sixteen weeks, posted here consistently and I am quite proud of that. I can’t technically say it is a success of my resolution, as I missed three weeks at the beginning of the year, but it is still a good thing. And that post will see the light of day sooner or later.

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We can only do so much. And there is a self-imposed deadline of Sunday at 1800. The only thing to do with longer posts is to nibble at it until it is finished.

And now for the awkeard segue part of the post from nibble-to-food-to-diet.

I am attempting intermittent fasting. The idea is to only give yourself an eight hour feeding window. And no that does not mean that you get to eat constantly for those eight hours.

food-healthy-vegetables-potatoes

What it means is that you skip one of your meals. So as I write this it is 1201 and I have been up since 0600. Since I last ate last night at 2020 I can’t eat again until after 1220.

I’m choosing to skip breakfast because it is not that special to me and I can save the calories for later. Not all the calories. Doing that would rather defeat the purpose. However, for me, there is certainly merit to the idea of waiting till I am really hungry before eating.

Everyone’s body is different, and I know less about dieting than I do about football, but I like this idea. There is another version of the diet, The warrior diet, in which only one meal a day is consumed. This would be too inflexible for me. I would want to eat in the evening and when in work I only have twenty minutes for dinner. And trying to eat my one hearty meal in that time would be bad for the stomach I’m sure.

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I haven’t been doing this for long enough to see results but, so far, I want to keep with it. Even if I am checking the clock every so often to see if I can eat yet.

The thing with diets is that the common wisdom seems to be that the best strategy is to make a lifestyle change. I was calorie counting before but didn’t have the will power to stop when I hit the limit. I would try to balance food intake with exercise though. Also it is not always clear what calories to write down. I can’t take a weighing scales into the staff canteen and weigh all my food. All that counting calories is tedious in any case.

There is not finishing line when it comes to diets. The body requires constant upkeep. The time just crossed into feeding time but I have just under thirty minutes on my pomodoro left so no food yet. Soon though, grumbling belly, soon. And now I will go away and nibble at one of those longer blog posts.

I hope you have had a wonderful Sunday.

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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Negativity

pexels-photo-54379.jpeg I have a tendency to be rather negative. This is a problem I have. This is a problem I need to deal with. This is a problem I don’t quite know how to deal with.

In the past I have Googled the subject of emotional suppression. Unless you hail from the planet Vulcan emotions are something that you have to deal with. At the time of that search I wanted to know if emotional suppression was really possible. And at times I still do.

My emotions are often in turmoil. I find that a good mood can be destroyed by something relatively minor. Being jump around happy is amazing – but sometimes wonder if sacrificing those times would befitness-jump-health-woman-56615.jpeg worth it if it meant never having to feel bad.

I know that, as humans, we can’t give up on emotion. Which means trying to deal with them.

To that end I have been meditating. I honestly can’t say with any certainty how much it has helped. I suppose the only way would be to have two identical mes and one meditates and the other doesn’t and then the data is compared – so bring on the cloning vat – set course for Sontar.

There is a lot of noise in every day life –   calm-daylight-evening-267967 both in reality and in our own minds. Thus taking a few minutes to stop and not think can surely only be beneficial. With the caveat if you’re in a car heading off a cliff you might want to try turning away.

Switching off completely is more difficult these days than it ever was in the past. Thanks to social media it is so easy to get sucked into you tube and Facebook. The former particularly is one I have a love/hate relationship with. I have found some wonderful videos on there but, on the other had, I probably don’t need to know 25 Things I Hate from some random person.

Creeping_butercup_close_800By the time you read this I will have returned from my holiday. I hope that I will feel refreshed and a bit better about myself.

I think the negativity of others is worthy of consideration too. If you have a friend who gets done on you and tells you you are useless then maybe you want to distance yourself from them. I am just a guy with a blog. There is no reason to take advice from me but a friend being negative is not going to help. It may even be in the guise of being helpful. Maybe they are telling you to be realistic about a dream of yours. In life there is no guarantee of success but in terms of ambition I refer you to the words of J Michael Straczynski: ‘Never Surrender Dreams.’

pexels-photo-261510Naturally writing is my dream. I can’t imagine not doing it. At times it is infuriating; when the image so clearly in my mind is so hard to translate into these little inefficient squiggles. At times it is annoying: when I don’t know something and have to get passed the 20th page on a Google search or find an expert. And sometimes I realise that the thing I need to know is something I will never understand.

Always though I know this is what I need to do. Not in a destiny way. Not in a ‘it was meant to be’ way. This is just something that has to be for me. I hope that many of you have that enjoyment of something.

For now I keep going. I try to be more positive and find the things that make me happy. And I will keep writing. Maybe one day I can make a living from it. That would be a great day indeed. But maybe not though – it is a compulsion, it is almost like a drug, but I must, as Joe Sisko says, ‘Write the words.’

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

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The pictures here are from: https://www.pexels.com/

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Productivity and Tally Marks

check-class-desk-7103 When it comes to simple pleasures there are few things better than the pleasure of crossing something off your to-do list.

In my case I use tally marks. This is good because without them my to-do list would have lots of repeats. The down side is if I ever need to use my arm, if I misplace my note book, it could be quite a scary thing. (Let those who know tell those that don’t – or just Google The Silence)

Having a relaxed to-list, with no dates just tasks, has been good. I have given myself ‘permission’ to do what I want. I bet you can guess what isn’t getting marks next to it…  pexels-photo-136409

Yep it’s exercise – funny how that works out. I’ll get to it eventually. Sorry what’s that sound…

Oink, flap, oink, flap, oink, flap…

Anyway at the moment I am waiting in for a delivery of tea. I hate waiting for deliveries. Firstly I don’t know when it will arrive and the intercom will make me jump. And secondly I can’t play music as I might miss the intercom. Nice tea is essential – even if I am using tea bags which I know a connoisseur would have a problem with – anyway I digress.

pexels-photo-247899I’m also reading a book on productivity – or rather decluttering one’s life which gives more time and so you can be more productive. The book is called The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F**K And that isn’t me censoring myself there are literal astrixes on the cover.

I’ve almost finished the book and it has been quite interesting. The crux of it is learning to say ‘No’. I’m sure we’ve all struggled with that. Have you ever gone along with something just because we felt an obligation? Why is it so hard to say the sentence: ‘I’m not a fan of Tupperware and would rather have dental surgery than spend an evening talking about it.’ – or perhaps kinder words than that.

I would say however the book is rather thin. The central ideas can be summed up very quickly – if you are interested I would recommend getting it from a library. I bought it and two followups from an actual shop. Which is a very weird thing to do in this day and age – and perhaps shows the problem with an impulse buy.

I hope that wherever projects you have going on are going well and that your weekend has been a lovely one.

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I just wanted to say that I have checked this post. I really have. Unfortunately my particular combination of dyslexia and dyspraxia makes it really hard for me to spot typos. Please enjoy and I’ll try not to make too many errors.

***

The pictures here are from: https://www.pexels.com/

 

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