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The never-ending story of the questioning mind.

The never-ending story of the questioning mind.

July 5, 2020
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I blog every day.
(Just like Seth.)
Is it too much, though?

Aarrgghhhh.
Resistance speaking? Fear? Not wanting to be too much?
(But I ”am” too much. And quite happily so.)

Who else publishes something daily?
Do you ever fear it’s ”too much to handle” for your audience?
Would you change, if it was?

For me, it’s simply the easiest way to do stuff. Daily.
(The Upholder in me nods and chimes in: I get such a kick out of run streaks as well!)

But I haven’t had a lot of people subscribing to my blog before, and now, more and more are trickling in, which makes me truly happy. And… fearful. For the above-mentioned reason.

Why?
(Oh, I know why, that’s simply the way the mind works. Thoughts come and go, and some of them sort’a makes an imprint, has me dive deep into the rabbit hole…)

Honest to God, I don’t read every post Seth publishes. I get the emails, and read some. Save them, to read later, and when there’s too many, I simply delete them instead. Unread.

So if you (imaginary subscriber of my blog) do the same, that’s perfectly fine.
I hope you read some, of course, but there’s no expectation from me that you read the lot.
Truly.

But should I take that, and turn it into a rational for not writing daily? If I post 3 days a week, would more people read more of the posts then? Or weekly?

Nah.

It doesn’t sit right.

But who knows, perhaps, once day, it might?
Or I’ll simply get fed up with writing/publishing daily, and I’ll start to ponder whether or not I write too seldom…

And on and on it goes.
The never-ending story of the questioning mind.


#tankespjärn, for those who wish to discover. More. Other. New.
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Worthy of celebration

May 20, 2020
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100 dailies in a row. Done deal. And, for me, not a feat in and of itself. I do stuff like this. My go-to example is the fact that I did my 2103rd morning seven exercise routine in a row this morning. Now, writing is definitely different from exercising, but since January 23rd, 2013 when I started #blogg100, a 100 days of daily blog posts challenge, I have published 2450 posts. Now, granted, some days I have published more than one post, but not that often, if my memory serves me. January 23rd, 2013, until May 20th, 2020, is 2674 days in total. So, if no posts are published two a day, that leaves 224 days of no blog posts. But say I might have double-posted 100 days… or for the fun of it, let’s say that in these 7+ years, I’ve not blogged for a full year. That still leaves 6+ years of blogging.

But.
That’s. Not. The. Point.

The point is 100 days of absolutely rocking, amazing, expanding, tankespjärn-rich, generous, sensitive, full-on, mind-boggling, laugh-inducing and loving comments, interactions, relationship-building.

That’s what’s so friggin’ amazing about these 100 days of dailies, totally worthy of celebration and cheer!

I have laughed. Cried. Been confounded. Annoyed. Frustrated. Confused. Enriched. Curious to find out more. Impressed. In awe. Sad. Nervous. Perhaps even a touch of anger in there. But more than anything, I’ve been energized. In its totality, that’s the main takeaway I have from these 100 days of The Creative’s Workshop. I have gotten so much energy from it. And I know, I’ve contributed with mine as well. A regenerative community, if ever!

Even though the official part of the workshop – with the 100 dailies challenge accompanied by 31 prompts and a handful of bonus prompts – is coming to its end today, we students are granted access to the space for another 50 days. Luckily. As there is still so much more to do and be here. I have prompts as yet unresponded to, and I have a mind to start over and redo/revisit/tweak my responses to the prompts, not to mention all the connections I want to deepen while the opportunity exists.

But then, after, mid-July, when it is closed, finished, finito, I expect I will be all cheesecake out, in the very best of ways, ready to simply sit back down. Relax. Reflect. Remember. Revere. But not yet! There’s another 50 days to go first!

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Me-time. Be-time.

May 15, 2020
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Woke early. Tossed for a bit, and then turned on the light and finished reading The End of the Ocean by Maja Lunde, a book which in Norwegian and Swedish is titled Blue. (Yes. A very worthwhile read.) Did a Deepak Chopra meditation prior to my 15 minutes of deep-breathing according to Wim Hof, before getting up, accompanied throughout by Pop the cat. Finished with the morning routine and went to grab my computer to put it in my backpack when I remembered…

I prompted myself to get back to morning blogging late last night, and so. Here I am.

Ready to leave for work, with a slight headache, the type of slight hangover-sensation-from-working-too-much-headache, that has been a shadowy companion for the past few weeks, when, indeed, I have been working a bit too much.

And yet.
I love it.
Living.
Learning.
Laughing.

There’s a lot of work to do right now, and for that I am truly grateful, and yet, I should take my own advice and look just a wee bit at what I could possibly subtract.
Work? No.
Wim Hof, meditation, Seven-exercise, cold bathing and such? No.
Buddhas-podding? No.
Gardening? No.

Or rather. All of these I say Yes to, vehemently Yes!

Now. I could continue listing all of my Yes:es. But I won’t. There’s a-plenty, that’s for sure.
But the interesting thing is, that as I sit here… I struggle to find even one thing I want to give up, to pause, to stop. Forever, or just for a while.

(And yeah. I know. I did this exercise not too long ago. But hey, bear with me. I’m still learning, and am definitely but a human being, having a very human experience here on Earth, so… now and again, it takes a couple of tries before insights truly land. By which I mean, that the shift they imply, whatever it may be, is actually implemented. By Being. By Doing.)

Tried what I did last time – opened up my calendar and deleted a few activities from it – but alas, there’s not a lot to delete… like. Nothing. Honestly.

So perhaps it’s more a matter of finding the balance within the project I am working at the moment, where we are in a very intense phase at the moment, a phase that will last at least until the first week of July. Refraining from checking my emails as often when I am ”not at the office”? Getting a bit more diligent with my digital sabbats? Ensuring I have resting time, me-time, be-time, more than I do now?

Yeah.
That might be worth looking into and taking action on (ironically, as the resting time in a sense implies less action-taking).

But hey. It’s 8:20 am, and I have done my daily blog! Whoop!
(Celebrate what you can, when you can – what a great mantra to bring into daily life!)


#tankespjärn, for those who wish to discover. More. Other. New.
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30 minutes of daily gardening

April 27, 2020
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In a Zoom call yesterday with a group from The Creative’s Workshop, each of us set an outside-of-work-more-relaxing-taking-a-break-from-stuff daily goal for the upcoming week, and mine was 30 minutes of daily gardening. Realizing now, as I sit here in the morning getting ready to leave for work, that I will have a hard time to squeeze that in today, if I am also to do dailies and blog, besides getting home from work around 5:30 pm and then – hopefully! – having outside choir practice 6:30 to 8 and then guitar lesson 8:30-9:30. Somewhere in there, I have to get some dinner in me as well!

And yet… this is what lures me into these types of challenges, to actually see what I can make possible which, normally, is way more than I (or those around me) sort of think is possible. And very appropriately today’s meditation from the Chopra Center that I am taking at the moment, centered on pure potentiality:

Through the law of pure potentiality I can create anything anytime anywhere.

So there! An added 30 minutes of gardening should be a breeze then, right? And will definitely make for quite a shift in my garden over the next week, that’s for sure! And having taken 15 minutes to get my dailies and blogging done for the day, hey, my 30 minutes of gardening is much more likely to take place. 

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Yesterday I went on a strike.

April 21, 2020
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Yesterday I went on a strike.

I. Did. Not. Blog.

I just didn’t feel like it. I had nothing on my mind worth saying, and no inkling of what I might come up with, and… most importantly, no desire to.
So I let myself off the hook and simply did not blog.

It’s not much of a strike really, but given the ease with which I stick to habits, deliberately not sticking to them once in a while is more of a stretch for me than sticking to them. So, in a sense, by not blogging I was putting myself on the spot, not letting myself off the hook as much as getting me on it, because it takes more for me to break a habit than stick to it.

And I need that.
Once in awhile, I need – want! Thrive on! – to stir the pot, to surprise me by not going on routine and habit, but deliberately, consciously, with engaged awareness, question my habitual choices. Like daily 1) blogging 2) morning seven-minute exercise 3) deep-breathing-practice 4) 10+ kilometers in my body, and a number of other things I do daily or weekly.

Do my habitual practices a l w a y s serve me?

Are there moments when I am best served by not doing them?

What happens to me when I do them without really wanting to? W
ithout being present to what I am doing?
Do they still serve me then?

Is there a threshold when habits go from serving to not-serving, perhaps even becoming harmful?
And what does it take for me to pick up on that?

Who do I need to be, in order to give me the nourishment I need, when what I need shifts?

So many questions.
And luckily, no need to actually answer them as such, but rather, just to let them be. Throw them out there, and see, if anything comes back to me. An answer? Another way to look at things? A new question, deepening my reflection?


#tankespjärn, for those who wish to discover. More. Other. New.
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No.

April 8, 2020
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Working from home.
That’s what I had on my agenda today.
Turns out.

No.
I would not be working from home today. 

Instead… I slept until nine thiiiirty.
Finished reading All the light you cannot see (just read it. It’s that good.).
Checked Social Media.
Said Yes to join the next-door neighbor for a PoGo-raid at the playground down the street, so quickly did my daily Seven and then didn’t have time to get dressed so walked barefoot, with uncombed hair in my bathrobe and managed to snag a Landorus.

Got dressed. Had breakfast, or lunch, more like it?
Handed over receipts and invoices to my Jenny who came over, having a sit-down for half an hour or so, to catch up. 

By now it’s 1 pm. This is when I truly decided that No, I will not be doing any work today.
So instead, I went for a barefoot walk.
Returned All the light you cannot see to the library (just read it. It’s THAT good.).
Went home and sat in the garden for the rest of the Buddhas by the roadside-episode that accompanied me on my walk.

Went inside. Laid down on my bed, keeping Pop company, read a few pages on another book, talked a bit to Alma, read some more. Did my Wim Hof deep-breathing exercise.

Went bike-riding while Alma went to buy Indian take away… which turned into a falafel instead. Ganesha closed on account of Corona. Bummer.

Time-coded the uncut episode of Buddhas by the roadside from the 7th of April, while writing a daily for The Creative’s Workshop.

And now… blog post published, will finish watching an episode of The English Game on Netflix, play a tune or two on my guitar, and then, head off to bed.

Tomorrow is another day! And tomorrow, I will be working. At least some…

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Hacks, amateurs and pro’s!

February 15, 2020
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The Creative’s Workshop continues, this time with a prompt that had me struggle and shirk away from the full extent of it. Asked to identify a hack, an amateur and a professional within my given creative outlet, I had the following to say:
Hm. So. My creative outlet is, to a large extent, my blogging, the writing process is the thing. So I’d have to look there. I don’t make any money from my blogging, which I guess makes me an amateur. I certainly don’t have a vast and adoring public either, but drip by drip, it’s increasing slow but steady. But who are the glorious amateurs, the successful professionals and the hacks? That prompt sure makes me dig deep. Especially so as I am Swedish, and still want to share people writing in English here, so you might be able to discover someone new.

The glorious amateurs. My friend Anna Brix Thomsen. She’s powerful. She’s brave and courageous. She definitely doesn’t hold back from sharing generously and with huge amounts of vulnerability. And boy does she ever provide #tankespjärn! Her sharing revolves a lot around parenthood, and unschooling/learning, but the underlying theme of it all is self-discovery, I’d say. And anyone who’s a parent knows the amount of inner work that having a kid entices. She’s got a daughter at home and has had less time writing her-style-long-posts, so a lot of the sharing these past years have been done on Facebook and/or Instagram rather than on her blog, but she’s picking up blogging again from what I understand. I hope, and think, that she’s stepping into the professional arena. And I for one am cheering her on, wishing her great success, for she is definitely glorious!

The successful professionals. Well. That one’s given. Seth Godin. Daily. Definitely showing up with enormous generosity – both in the blogging, the podcasting, the course materials etc, and also live. I attended #SethinLondon in 2015 [Shiiiit, time flies!] and the generosity and warmth that Seth exuded was amazing. Tangible. I was totally star-struck upon meeting Seth in person, and with the most caring down-to-earth:edness, Seth put me right at ease. Very inspiring!

Buuuuut, it’s a bit too easy to point to Seth in The Creative’s Workship, created by Seth himself, isn’t it? However, as I’ve basically stopped reading blogs (once Google shut down their Reader, I really haven’t followed blogs, with one exception, and you know who’s blog that is…) I struggle to come up with another name.

Luckily, I do follow one more person, who blogs, and who is in my view, a successful professional, and who is inspiring also as an entrepreneur, as he’s created the life he wants to live. I am talking about David Stiernholm, known in Swedish as Struktören, which is another make-believe Swedish word (another reason I have a soft spot for him!) which basically means the person structuring things. I have followed David more or less since he started as a Struktör in 2004, and have found an endless amount of resources, ideas and hands-on-tips on structure from him. And if you think that sounds boring? Think again! David shares his knowledge with a sense of humor as well as with great simplicity and pedagogy. I follow him in Swedish, but he does work in English as well and he’s well worth checking out!

The hacks. Hm. Even more of a struggle this one, mostly because I don’t really follow people whom I experience as hacks, in any area. Nah. Nothing and no-one, comes to mind. Nada. Zilch. I’ll sit with this one though, and if I come to think of someone, I’ll revisit this prompt!

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Willing myself to write

September 30, 2019
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It’s past ten pm, I have yet to blog and finish a meditation challenge-activity as well as send off a challenging activity of my own to my digital #tankespjärn client, before I hop into bed. Pop the cat is draped elegantly across the sofa, right next to me, my guess is he’ll run after me once I get off the couch, to beat me to bed.

I am not really in blogging-mode, and yet, here I am, willing myself to write. You see, these past months I’ve not made time for blogging in my extremely jam-packed calendar, and it affects me. I ground myself when I write; I become aware of what I am, where I am, who I am when I sit down to let my fingers tip-toe across the keyboard. So the fact that I’ve been a busy bee coupled with the fact that I haven’t blogged is starting to take its toll. Blogging is a part of my wellbeing practice.

Had a friend suggest I ”just write, you don’t need to publish it”. But that’s just it. I don’t ”just write”. Or at least, way too seldom. Publishing my writings is what makes me write, especially as I have the intention to blog daily. That means I write daily, and that is of huge benefit to me.

So here I sit. Ten past ten at night, after a long day of three different networking meetings, four almost-half-hour bike rides, and both choir and guitar practice. Writing. Getting into the habit of blogging daily again. A habit that serves me.

Possibly I should take a helicopter view of my blogging routine, and set up a new set of intentions. Perhaps daily isn’t optimal? Perhaps it should be every other day, perhaps only on weekdays, perhaps… well. Who knows. For now, though, getting back on the horse again seems like the wisest thing I can do.

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Content.

May 3, 2019
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Make the most of your created content… or so I read. And hear. Over and over again.
Realizing, I definitely do not.

I have, to date, 1692 blog posts over at my (nowadays solely) Swedish blog, and with this post published, 497 blog posts here. In a little while I will do my 184th Facebook live, recorded in as many days. Not even counting 2374 Instagram posts, there’s quite a lot of content I’ve created that I could/should do something more with.

I have recently started Doing Gentle with an Edge, my podcast where I read blog posts from my Doing Gentle-series, as well as reflections. That’s one way to reuse my original content, in a way that makes me happy. But surely there’s so much more I could do with everything I’ve done these past years?

Ebooks?
Transcribe some of my lives and turn them into blog posts?
Make lives (more deliberately) on the topic of blog posts I’ve written?
Pick out quotes from my writings, mount on value-adding (in one way or another) images and post on Instagram?
Start a Pinterest-account and post them there as well?
Be more deliberate in how I post and cross-post on social media in general, and Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram in particular?

And that’s just ”my content”, which is but a part of what I do/am capable of doing. Just writing this, I get a bunch of other ideas.

However. What I notice more than anything is that what is lacking in how I make the most of my content, as well as of my skills, is deliberateness.

I am an upholder.
When I say I will blog daily, I do.
When I start doing daily lives on Facebook, I do them.
When I say I will do something, it takes a lot for me not to follow through.
But… have I honestly asked myself what’s my Why behind doing what I am doing?
And if so – have I followed it up with the How in the form of actions? In turn, followed by What the actions of my How’s turn into?

No.
Have not.
Not all the way through the Golden Circle of Why – How – What.

Deliberateness, you read, and perhaps think That sounds so boring, and, somehow, almost manipulative, doesn’t it?

Well. To tell you the truth – no. Not to me. Where I am at right now, in an ongoing transformation of my business, it sounds anything but boring. It sounds outright enticing! I mean… what if I sat down, with pen and paper, and got deep into the question of What want’s to happen here/now? Perhaps I would stop blogging and live:ing daily? Perhaps I would do it even more often? Perhaps I would stop altogether? Who knows!

And… given how many ideas I am getting just from writing this, what if I hook my newfound friend deliberateness up with a hefty dose of focus? What might be possible then?

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What to stop doing?

March 20, 2019
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As I was pondering what I do to earn a living (I’ve had my own company since October 1st, 2007), I came up with a multitude of ideas on what m o r e I can do, on top of my existing income streams. Those I will be exploring and playing around with, for sure. But more importantly, I also started to look at what I do, that perhaps I should s t o p doing?

Any existing income-generating activities that I should stop doing? Worth pondering, for sure.

But the real deal-breaker is likely to be that which takes time and effort without giving me the results I am looking for? Like… spending time on social media without a clear purpose? Meetings of various sorts that are super-nice, but are they aligned with the results I am going for? Blogging and vlogging?

I blog every day. And I love it. Or rather, I love it most days. Sometimes it’s a drag, but I’ve resolved to stick to my intention of a daily blog post, if nothing else because it’s easier to stick to the routine if I blog daily, not making it a choice really. Yet. Blogging takes time. Let’s say I spend half an hour up to an hour a day to write and publish my daily post. Sometimes less… sometimes more. What could I do with this hour that would be of more value to me – and you? Or is this an hour that i s generative enough to warrant the effort, only in different ways than strictly monetary?

I know I would not be who I am, or where I am, today, without blogging, which I have now done, more or less daily, since January 2013. But is it still as rewarding as it has been?

I also vlog every day, on Facebook, and have for 140 days in a row. And I think I love that too. The same reasoning as for the blog is valid for the vlogging. Except it takes way less time. 5-10 minutes, and I am done. However, it’s not at all my medium in the same way as writing/blogging is. I like letting words pour out of me, down through my fingers and onto (digital) paper. I enjoy the vlogging as well, but it’s different. Perhaps the major reason for me not being as enamored with vlogging because I personally prefer reading to listening/watching vlogs. (Pods on the other hand – those I love!)

Podding is something I am on the brink of doing… so I will have to take a raincheck on that medium for the moment, as I don’t know what the actual effort and possible reward from it will be.

Results and rewards are definitely not o n l y to be measured in terms of money. And yet – if there’s very little, or no, monetary gains to show for a lot of invested effort, that effort has to be balanced out somehow. Because there’s a bottom line here. I want – need! – to invoice a certain sum every month, in order to pay me as well as cover all other expenses.

So.
What do I spend my time on?
What’s the required effort, how much of my energy is used, and what’s the end result?
What is the reward, and does it match the effort used?

 

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