Monthly Archives June 2017

Start living that way.

Start living that way.

June 22, 2017
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”Suppose you had the revolution you are talking and dreaming about. Suppose your side had won, and you had the kind of society that you wanted. How would you live, you personally, in that society? Start living that way now!” – Paul Goodman

Dream societyA few years ago, I came to this conclusion myself. For years I was dreaming of a more gentle, loving and generous society, one where the connection between one and all was encouraged and acknowledged – what Martin Luther King Jr. called the beloved community -, when suddenly it struck me: I don’t have to live my life in a state of lack anymore. I can live my life, as if the world I dream of, is already here, where there is an abundance of love, generosity and gentleness.

So I did. I started to believe in the good of each and everyone I meet, which sometimes is harder than I would like for it to be, for sure. I started to be very generous with my love, with my caring, with my gentleness. Both towards myself (and that’s possibly where it’s made the biggest impact, honestly) and towards those around me. It’s one of the best moves I’ve ever made – in part because it makes for a much sweeter experience here on earth.

So. What do you dream of? What kind of society do you paint inner pictures of, when you imagine the best possible life for yourself and the world? What’s stopping you, from living the life you would live then, starting here and now?

Inspired to continue blogging on the theme from the #blogg100-challenge in 2017 I give you:
The book “Hope in the dark” by Rebecca Solnit.

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What am I blinding my children to?

June 18, 2017
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I’ve already recommended the entire Invisibilia-podcast series in one of these podcast recommendations, and I do suggest you listen to each and every show. But here’s a specific episode which is just mind-blowing. At the end, the hosts had me dancing in the street (was outside taking a walk while listening) as I answered YES to the question:

Do you think if we changed our expectations blind people could come to see?

The episode is called: How to become batman and centers around Daniel Kish, a blind man (since he was 13 months old) who since early age uses echolocation to get around.

BoldomaticPost_What-am-I-blinding-my-childreWhen I listen to how his mom raised him, I got really quiet, and looked deep within at how I raise and have raised my children.

Paulette Kish faced the question if she was going to raise him like a seeing child, allow him to explore his world with very few restrictions on him for blindness?

Now. My children are not physically blind. So that specific question has never been a question for me to ponder. But still, as I listen to this show, and hear the story of Daniel, and of his mother, I cannot help but wonder what I am blinding my children to, by the expectations I place upon them? And correspondingly, what am I opening them up to, by other expectations? Are these expectations intentional or unintentional from my part? How aware am I of my expectations, and the result that can spring from them?

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts – and this is one of them, originally posted here – , mixing them up with new podcast recommendations. This one I find especially well-suited, given the similarity to the post from yesterday on What my children learn watching me?
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What my children learn watching me?

June 17, 2017
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propped up in bedToday is my birthday, and as I sit here, still propped up against the pillows in bed, getting ready for the day – which will be spent preparing for and having people over in the afternoon and evening – I come across this phrase:

”What are your children learning
as they watch you?”

I could ask them. Actually, that’s a good idea, I think I will, one day in the not too distant future.

I can also look within, and reflect upon what I wish and hope that the learn while watching me.

I hope my children learn (in no specific order)…
– to be gentle towards themselves.
– to laugh at all things possible to laugh at (and with).
– to be generous, both in spirit and with physical means that can grant relief to a fellow human.
– that it’s ok to experience all emotions possible to experience; to not be afraid of feeling whatever comes in the moment.
– to dream wildly and to do the work that will take them one step closer towards fulfilling that dream, and then another step, and another…
– to be kind in heart, helpful and openminded.
– to open their homes to those in need.
– that thoughts aren’t Truth, but rather a suggestion, that they, in each given moment, can ask How does this serve me?. And if the answer is It doesn’t, to know that they can let go of that thought, to let the next one come.
– the importance of thinking one step further – that the choices we make has implications down the line, not simply for us as individuals, but for all of us, for flora and fauna and the Earth itself.
– to enjoy life! The richness of it, the textures, smells and flavors, the vistas and thrills, the high’s and low’s of the eternal rollercoaster we call life!
– to love. Wholeheartedly. With all they’ve got.
– to dance through life, and especially, to dance with whom- och whatever comes knowing at the door.
the importance to look after ones Self, in spirit and body alike.
– to read! All the worlds available to us in the form of books is such a treasure.
– to ask questions and be forever curious.
– to be open to what wants to happen next.
– to grace life with beauty and tenderness as well as lots of hugs and kisses! You can never get too many hugs, that’s for sure.

I believe I could go on and on, listing all the things I wish my children learn from watching me; all the while knowing that I am not all of this at all times – far from it. It is my intention though, to live life wholeheartedly with these aims top of mind. And when I slip or forget, to get back on track and above all, to be gentle with myself at all times.

Inspired to continue blogging on the theme from the #blogg100-challenge in 2017 I give you:
The book “The parents Tao Te Ching” by William Martin.

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This is how it is for everyone.

June 15, 2017
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“Life’s energy is never static. It is as shifting, fluid, changing as the weather. Sometimes we like how we are feeling, sometimes we don’t. Then we like it again. Then we don’t. Happy and sad, comfortable and uncomfortable alternate continually. This is how it is for everyone.”

I’ve written many times about just this. The ever-changing nature of the human experience, and how the realization that this is what it’s like to live on earth as a human being, has changed my life. It has broadened my experience of life, giving me room to be; To fully experience each and every emotion and feeling that comes upon me – creeping up? Crashing down? All of it! – with less desire to be rid of it, to get through to the other side, to stop feeling what I am feeling and feel something else, something better, sweeter, softer, instead. No. I feel. I hurt, grieve, rage and despair. But also heal, rejoice, laugh and swoon. Neither feeling better or worse than the other. Some of them easier to be in than others, but neither of them bad or wrong, as feelings go. They simply are.

Sixten the dogJust before, I was in a state of confusion. Right now – hungry. Getting ready to get out of bed, do my morning Seven, take a shower, make myself my morning green smoothie and be in town at ten o’clock, a thirty minute bike ride to get there, with the added To-do of having to take Sixten the dog (we are dogsitting for a few days) on a walk before I take off, I am now starting to feel a bit pressed for time…

Because life’s energy is never static. It is as shifting, fluid, changing as the weather. Sometimes we like how we are feeling, sometimes we don’t. Then we like it again. Then we don’t. Happy and sad, comfortable and uncomfortable alternate continually. This is how it is for everyone.

Inspired to continue blogging on the theme from the #blogg100-challenge in 2017 I give you: The book “Taking the leap – Freeing ourselves from old habits and fears” by Pema Chödrön

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Leaving things alone.

June 13, 2017
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“Thanks to the migration of threes, the forest is constantly changing. And not just the forest – all of Nature. And that’s why so many human attempts to conserve particular landscapes fail. What we see is always a brief snapshot of a landscape that only seems to be standing still. The illusion is almost perfect in the forest, because trees are among the slowest-moving beings with which we share our world and changes in the natural forest are observable only over the course of many human generations. One of these changes is the arrival of new species.”trees

“Giant hogweed is considered extremely dangerous because its sap, in combination with ultraviolet light, can burn human skin. Every year, millions are spent digging up plants and destroying them, without any great success. However, hogweed can spread only because the original forested meadow along the banks of rivers and streams no longer exist. If these forests were to return, it would be so dark under the forest canopy that hogweed would disappear. The same goes for Himalayan balsam and Japanese knotweed, which also grow on the riverbanks in the absence of the forests. Trees could solve the problem if people trying to improve things would only allow them to take over.

That last sentence is certainly true for much more than the problem of invasive plants. What would life be like if I (and you? we?) would leave things alone to a greater extent than I do? And how to know when me trying my hardest to improve things is truly beneficial, and when it is not?

Inspired to continue blogging on the theme from the #blogg100-challenge in 2017 I give you:
The book “The hidden life of trees” by Peter Wohlleben.

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Speaking my truth

June 11, 2017
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Rather than solve my issue with my podcast-player, I’ve started to listen to podcasts in another app, and hence, have a backlog of episodes to listen to from my favorite podcast shows, such as On Being and Good Life Project. Pressed play on the GLP-show with Glennon Doyle Melton, and felt now and again as if she’s speaking my thoughts, my feelings, my fears, my beliefs and wishes. She is, in many ways, speaking my truth. How odd! And cool, at the same time.

elderberry flowersThis is one of those times I wish GLP had transcripts of their shows, so I could serve you up a number of those hitting-me-straight-in-the-heart quotes by Glennon, but alas… I simply hope you will do what I did, and listen. I went elderberry flower-picking this evening, to make cordial, and had Glennon and Jonathan Fields accompany me.

She gives me cause to reflect upon relationships, on writing, on intimacy and being transparent, and about doing the next right thing, without explaining myself to others. And as I cannot stop myself from pressing play once again, here are a few snippets that speaks to me:

Relationships are hard work, because they make us face our stuff. 

I wanna figure out how to be my most intimate self with my most intimate relationships.

To do the next right thing and then not explain myself. The first step is to do it without first asking for permission, or consensus. […] The most bad-ass thing that a woman can do is just not explain herself.

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts, mixing them up with new podcast recommendations, such as this one. 
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#blogg100 – All that is to come.

June 8, 2017
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”Every moment is a death
of all that has gone before,
and a birth
of all that is to come.”

Here I am, in a moment that is the death of the #blogg100 challenge 2017 – writing one hundred blog posts over one hundred days. Challenge completed. One hundred blog posts later, I am thrilled at the theme I picked for the challenge this year: writing about and reflecting on sentences or phrases I have read in books. I’ve blogged in English and Swedish both, and have a hard time grasping the fact that this is the last blog post of the hundred. It’s been such a joy to dive even deeper into the chosen books – finally giving myself an outlet for all the wise, witty, funny, amazing, thought provoking, beautiful and moving passages that touch me, that I mark off with a pencilled in star, exclamation mark, wiggly line, or simply by taking a snapshot of the page, saving it in my Evernote.

Here I am, in a moment that is the birth of all that is to come. I will continue to blog in this style, the way I’ve done it during the challenge, because I have so much more to reflect upon around the books I am reading. I have but skimmed the surface, with reflections on snippets from seven books I’ve read and written about in English, and nine in Swedish. It will, likely, not be a daily post, but then again, who knows what is to come…

What I do know is that just from the sixteen books I’ve referenced so far, I’ve still got material for hundreds more blog posts! There is so much wonderfully written wisdom to be had at easy access in books – those I’ve read, and those I’ve not yet opened – that I could continue on this theme forever if it would suit me. There’s so much more I also want to share in my writings, that I will not limit myself to this – but what I do notice is how my ability to be fully present to the Now, to feel, to observe, to note what happens inside as well as outside of me, is expanding. I have been enjoying the books I’ve read, unusually so, and the same goes for everything else in life as well.

Hugging my kids. Sitting on a train watching the fast-moving and beautiful vistas outside the window. The color and smell of the blooming lilacs.

Enjoying life, because I can.

lilacs

#Blogg100 challenge in 2017 – post number 100 of 100.
The book “The parents Tao Te Ching” by William Martin.
English posts here, Swedish at herothecoach.com.

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#blogg100 – Carefully protected delusions.

June 5, 2017
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”You always sound better inside your own head and in your dreams than you do in the cold light of the playback room. There, the way you truly sound initially lands on you like a five-hundred-pound weight. Inside your head, you’re always a little better of a singer, a little better of a guitarist and, of course, as with the layman, a little better-looking. Tape and film have no interest in the carefully protected delusions you’ve constructed to get through your day. You just have to get used to it.”

delusionsWhen it comes to how I sound, to myself, physics come into play, because the sound will of course sound differently to me, as I am speaking and singing, when it comes through the spaces of my body, the caverns of my skeleton, constituting the sounding-board that is me; and when it doesn’t. When I hear my self played back to me from a recording, the sound i s different, because then my own voice only comes to me through the normal route for outside sounds, making it into my awareness.

But when it comes to my looks… I don’t know. Something else happens. Or? Maybe physics has the answer there as well? As the perspective I have looking down at my body, automatically has me looking down at myself, somehow elongating me, I am always so surprised to see my mirror-reflection; much shorter and chubbier that what I look like from ”up here”. Makes me wonder though – is the same true also for really tall people? Do you also become surprised at how short you look in the mirror?

Regardless, the carefully protected delusions are perhaps one of the reasons why it’s a struggle – sometimes, or honestly; oftentimes, at least for me –  to be at ease with my own body?

#Blogg100 challenge in 2017 – post number 97 of 100.
The book “Born to run” by Bruce Springsteen.
English posts here, Swedish at
herothecoach.com.

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The Road to Tyranny

June 4, 2017
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Halfway through my second time listening to Sam Harris in conversation with Timothy Snyder on The Road to Tyranny, I order his book On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century at my local library, ending up number four in line having reserved it. Happy it won’t be that long before I get my hands on it – at the same time, I wish many more people would be queuing to read it, because I believe this is a book we need to read. All of us.

As I listen to Sam and Timothy talk about lesson number one “Do not obey in advance” I shudder at the risk at hand in many countries right now. The overwhelming sensation I pick up on is an againstness – being against muslims and jews, against women and LGBTQ, being against people of color and migrants, being against vegetarians and vegans, being against… anything really, anything that in any small way differs from oneself.

BoldomaticPost_It-s-about-getting-you-into-tAnd this scares me. A lot.

On a personal note, I realized years ago, that I am not a con-person, but rather a pro-person. I do not gain energy to create change from being against something, I get energy from being for something. Perhaps because it actually requires more of Me – being For something, I have to look within, finding that which I truly want to see more of in the world – I see many more people around me being against.

In newspapers, radio, TV, on the news (which I am not watching by the way, and haven’t for twenty years now) as well as in my social media feeds. Now – I’ve curated my social media feeds carefully, so I have a lot more friends who are for, rather than against. This is deliberate on my point, as what I focus on is what I’m telling my brain is important, making me get more and more of that which I focus on. So I am carefully tending my “mental diet”, ensuring that what I take in, sustains me in a good way.

But then, when I read editorials in the biggest newspapers of Sweden, normalizing language that a few years back would only be voiced by extremist political parties… I shiver at the danger we are all in. I understand, fully, the importance of making my voice heard in ways possible for me. And more importantly, using my voice, not being against, but being for! In all ways, living that which I want to see more of; Martin Luther King’s vision of a beloved community.

I don’t normally put pressure on you, my dear reader, to actually listen to the podcasts I link to. This time around, I will. Please, listen to Sam Harris and Timothy Snyder. After that, it’s up to you. I know what I will be doing more of, what I will be doing less of, and above all, I’ll be eagerly awaiting a message from the library, telling me to come pick up Timothy Snyder’s book.

In 2015 I ran a series on herothecoach.com with Sunday postings of podcasts to my liking. In 2017 I will be re-posting some of those blog posts, mixing them up with new podcast recommendations, such as this one. 

 

 

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