reflection

Yesterday I went on a strike.

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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Follow up – July 2019 – As I am.

August 5, 2019
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I intend to go through my intentions for the year at the end of each month. This gives me a monthly reminder of my intentions as well as ample space for reflection and possible adjustment.

July… a month spent travelling with everything that entails. Such as very little blogging!

2019. The year when I will…

* have my bodily wellbeing in focus by:

  • continuing with my daily Seven accompanied by burpees: ✅
  • Headspace daily: ✅
  • run a minimum of  75 runs –> run-when-I-feel-like-it-intention: My bigtoe joint is still acting up. Pains me. So I walk and ide my bike rather than jog.
  • take cold (outdoors) baths as often as I can – and add to this by taking cold showers: Cold showers rather than baths, as the water temperature is above my personally set limit (≤14 degrees).
  • dance Lindy hop as often as I can (taking a class during the spring, and then there’s the social dancing as well!): So far no Lindy hop-dancing this summer. Luckily I have signed up for the continuation class starting in September!
  • continuing to ride my bike and walk as much as possible: walked just short of 60 and biked a bit more than 240 kilometers.

* have my mental and spiritual wellbeing in focus by:

  • reading at least 75 books, of which 12 in Swedish and 12 in English already have been chosen. These 12 + 12 I will be blogging about: Read 36/75 böcker. 7 books behind schedule, which is betetr than where I was at two weeks ago, when I was down by 11 books… Blogged about Clapton’s guitar – watching Wayne Henderson build the perfect instrument (book 7 of 12 in English) and the Swedish counterpart is Tankar för dagen, manual för ett snällare liv.
  • learn at least five songs by heart including lyrics on the guitar, which will be made possible by my aim at ten minutes of guitar playing on a daily basis: Zero. Zero! Geez…
  • I will let the wonderful book The book of Awakening by Mark Nepo be my daily companion: My travels made me slip out of this habit, and I have yet to step into it fully again.
  • hold digital 24-hour sabbats at least twice a month: Digital sabbats on July 6-7 and 26-27. In Augusti I plan for the same on 2-3, 9-10, 16-17.

* have creation in focus by:

  • booking at least four two-day writing retreats during the year: pondering a few ideas about writing retreats, including the possibility of running a digital retreat? My ideas from January remain but I am starting to feel silly writing that. So perhaps I should just plan it? 12-13 September, 28-28 October, 11-12 November, 9-10 December. There. Done. Booked. The chance of these writing retreats actually happening just got a lot higher!
  • keeping up with daily Facebook Lives for as long as there’s energy in doing it: Have deliberately ended this suite of daily lives (in June), and hence I am removing it from my yearly intentions.
  • blog daily: It’s August and my vacation is over. So I step onboard this intention again, as of right now.
  • start to pod: Well, well, well. Borrowed the podstudio of my friend J and hance I have a 2 hour raw file to cut and produce. So there will be new episodes soon, count on it!
  • release (at least) 4 e-books in 2019: thoughts are swirling, nothing concretized as of yet. The chances of this happening might just have gotten better as well, given the fact that I have marked writing retreats in my calendar?

* have financial husbandry in focus by:

  • sowing, sowing and sowing a little bit more; on a weekly basis intentionally work on my various income streams: ✅
  • keep tabs on my set invoicing goal on a monthly basis: ✅I reached my set goals in January and March, not in February, April, May, June and July (the two latter not so surprising). Feels like an area to step up my game in!
  • keep an accounts book on private income and expenses: Have a bit of a backlog in my accounts book, I will get on it, I promise.

And finally – on all levels – experiment and play, experience pleasure and exploring and challenging myself, all the while being gentle to myself: July. Well. Me and the youngest one went to England with my mom and aunt to visit relatives and attend a lovely graduation celebration at St John’s. (Pop the cat got to stay at home, or rather, had his own vacation away from home.) Me and the young one then jumped on EuroStar to Brussels, took the train to The Hague (thanks a lot for your kindness and hospitality Vanessa!) and Amsterdam (dito Mayke!) before we got on a Flixbus back home. Took a swim in the North Sea, had a few lovely bike rides and I can warmly recommend Rembrandt’s House, what a lovely and perfectly sized museum! Once back home I had work waiting for me, although I must confess I haven’t worked full time precisely. But still! Lunch with family in Simrishamn, daCapo-party and helping with a move from Limhamn to Oxie, a podclub meetup on attachment theory, two CoachWalks and an assorted amount of hobnobbing at that.

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The Great Misunderstanding (book 22 of 26)

November 4, 2018
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in Tip
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The Great Misunderstanding, by Premananda, is a book that my pod-leader from my Supercoach Academy training in 2014 talked to me about on our third physical meetup, in London. I don’t remember how me and Phil to to talk about it, but as he lives locally, he said he’d bring it the next day, or possibly the next meetup (which took place in Santa Monica a couple of months later), I can’t remember which. Anyhow, both me and Phil forgot, until SCA was over…. so one day, I got a package in the post, and it was this book, gifted me by Phil!

“You don’t have to do anything to be who you are.”

Since then (holy moly, had to count on my fingers, but it’s been f o u r years!), I’ve been planning on reading it, but… you know the drill. I must say, actually reading books I’ve intended to read for years on end has most definitely been one of the greatest perks of my 26 Swedish and 26 English books-challenge. Such a fulfilling side-effect that I will be doing some kind of version of this challenge next year as well!

“Projection means to imagine that another is responsible for something that goes on inside you. If you want to put an end to suffering in your life you have to take responsibility for it. It has nothing to do with anybody out there. Realising that is a very big step because we spend most of our time projecting onto others and blaming them for our misery.
Putting an end to our habit of projection involves looking honestly at our behaviour and patterns, without judgment and opinion. we don’t have to change them; we just have to see them. As soon as they are seen they are not just automatic anymore. We stop being robotic, no longer just victims of our conditioning, and we become present with life as it actually is, not as we imagine it to be.”

Supercoach Academy is grounded in the Three Principles, a simple way of describing that which, in my understanding, is the common thread of most (if not all?) – major – religions, namely the creation and experience of being a human on Earth. This is also what Premananda talks about in The Great Misunderstanding, with a focus on the fact that we are not separate, but rather, we are one.

The Great Misunderstanding is an easy read, a mix of input/information, conversations and jokes. All pointing to the same thing, that a strong identification with an ‘I’, to a large extent makes life difficult. Unnecessarily difficult.

“You are here on this planet to be empowered, to be beautiful, to be whoever you are supposed to be and to manifest this in the world. Do your dance, whatever it is. It’s not so difficult. You just have to remember who you are and surrender to that, trust it.”

I like what I read, even though it’s not exactly news to me, any of it. But it points me towards something that I know to be true, that I revel in, a space, a silence, an understanding, that has me “coming home” in a way, remembering who I am, and surrendering to it.

“Life itself is a mirror. […] Everything that happens in life is an opportunity to know yourself. In our modern society most people are simply not interested to know who they really are.”

I don’t know that to be true, that people aren’t interested to know who they really are. I think many are, but feel both scared and alone in this search, not knowing who to look towards, whom to be guided by. It’s like reflection, a practice that most people seem to have forgotten about, forgotten how it’s done, when, why. Possibly it’s the same with “knowing who I am” – there might not be enough people around who are interested in this question (who am I?) and talk about it so we can be inspired and guided by them? I want to believe that, rather than “no one is interested”.

“[…] everybody arrives on this planet with an invitation around their neck saying something like ‘welcome – have fun’, but unfortunately it seems to fall off in many cases.”

Welcome – have fun!
Now isn’t that a lovely way to greet life and every single day with?


The book I am blogging about is part of the book-reading challenge I’ve set for myself during 2018, to read and blog about 26 Swedish and 26 English books, one book every week, books that I already own.

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Being gentle to me – Reflection August and September ’17

September 25, 2017
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I don’t know if you’ve noticed the absence of my monthly reflection on how I do gentle to myself; I did. But I didn’t act upon it, so in a sense, that’s me being gentle to me. It’s not a m u s t to write these monthly reflections, it’s an intention, a gift I give myself, but also one that I can refuse, if that’s what feels best. And honestly, I didn’t really know what to write.

Acceptance on chestnutYou see, it’s been a time of winding down, a time of less emotional storms and upsets, a time of me simply being. At the same time it’s been a time of winding up, of getting my sh*t together, a time of me figuring out what being me means, right now, right here.

A chapter is closing, and I am deliberately trying to close it with gentleness and great care. And that feels really good – that’s what’s deserved.

At the same time, I know I’ve been necessarily blunt with others at times, and the only thing I can do (after saying sorry) is to take heed, to remember what it felt like, what it lead to, and try to behave more in the way I want to (being proactive rather than reactive) from now on, and most importantly: to not beat myself over the head for my bluntness. That won’t make it alright, and it certainly doesn’t serve either party, so, no. I am not taking that route. And I hope I’ve learned that lesson to the degree that I will never again chose the ”beat myself over the head”-route. I’ve done that enough, and nothing good comes from it.

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24/24 – Are you a cook or a chef?

December 24, 2016
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We got a final gift. The generosity kept on coming. A beautifully printed piece of paper to remember the occasion by. (As if I would ever forget it anyway?!)

The photo doesn’t do the print justice at all. But my piece of print is being framed right now, so it’s the only photo I’ve got to share with you.london session

The question is this: Do you want to be a cook or a chef?

You see. Seth calls out for more chefs. And I agree. We do need more chefs. But, if at heart you are truly are a cook. Go be a cook, and create a life that matters to you, doing what you love!

But if you are not, at heart, a cook. Don’t settle for it. Don’t listen to the mind chatter telling you that you cannot venture forth and try to become a chef. Because you can. And that, now that I think about it, really sums up the message Seth keeps on hammering out there.

You can.

At least. You can venture forth. You can act. You can also fail. And learn from that. Venture forth anew, course-adjusted based on your learnings. Act again. And possibly. Fail again. Repeat, repeat, repeat, and then… You will see that little by little, you become more and more of a chef. If you learn. And don’t fall for the biggest scam around, ok? Falling in love with a specific way to achieve your goal, rather than setting your hearts desire on said goal, is just not a good idea. Try one way. If it fails. Try another. And another.

If you are a chef at heart – the world needs you. Your onlyness. Don’t cut yourself – or the rest of the world – short. Be a chef. And please, echoing Seth, go, make work that matters.

Reflection #24 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th, which means this is the final one. I hope you enjoyed them all!

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23/24 – Construct your life

December 23, 2016
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construct

You.

You construct your life. 

Unless someone else does it. And is it then the life you want to live? Or does it turn into a life lived by you, rather than the life you want to live?

Perhaps it’s a subtle difference, not visible to each and all of you.

But for me… there is a difference there. A matter of ownership. Of being the person constructing my life, taking it on, fully, actively. Constructing my life.

The opposite is riding along in the bus. Back-seat driver at best. Likely nothing more than a passenger. Passive. Ceding ownership to someone, something, else. Almost a way of claiming victimhood. Who would I cede to? And why?

No. Not for me. That is not my path. I don’t see a reason why I would not construct my life. Do you?

Reflection #23 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

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22/24 – What’s your Why?

December 22, 2016
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If you know me at all, you know I have a soft spot for the question Why.

Why makes my heart beat a little bit faster, as I truly believe knowing what lies at the heart of something, a passion, an interest, a purpose, makes a difference. It makes the feeling behind the action and/or words purer, more energetic, vibrant and full of life.heart

So ask yourself – what is your Why?

But don’t stop there. Do it the Toyota Way, asking at least five why’s in a row, really getting to the bottom of it, finding the root-cause.

But it doesn’t have to be a problem that needs fixing. Not at all. Rather. Get to the heart of what makes you happy everyday, and then, DO more of that. Create a life where that Why infuses your day. Every day.

I know my Why. But still. I get prompted by this Advent Calendar to dig deeper. To redefine it. Or clarify it. It’s as if the rough sketch is about to turn into a sharp and well-shot photograph. With great clarity in the details, and unquestionably clear in what it’s showing.

Yeah. My Why is getting sharper. Your’s?

Reflection #22 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

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21/24 – Your elevator question?

December 21, 2016
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elevator question

Everyone has heard of a thirty second elevator pitch. But have you ever heard of anyone actually getting anywhere with one? Making a sale? Catching a big fish, so to speak?

I doubt it. I haven’t heard of any example at least. Maybe you have?

Anyway. Seth has a suggestion, and I love it.

Rather than go down the Ego lane of making an elevator pitch, get an elevator question instead. Questions are so much more invigorating and interesting than any pitch you might come up with.

And once you have you elevator question ready (or two? Three? Ten?), make sure you have this down as well: Be. Honestly. Curious. About. The. Answer. 

Otherwise you don’t have to bother. People who ask a question without an interest in the answer isn’t much fun to talk to, are they?

Reflection #21 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

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20/24 – The Startup school

December 20, 2016
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I am a fan of Seth Godin. I guess that isn’t a big surprise if you’ve stuck with me these past 20 days or so?

I am fascinated by his mind, marvel and wonder at how it works, because he has an ability to look at things from a totally different perspective that what seems the obvious one, and that is a very valuable skill. He is a great teacher at that, and I learn so much from reading and listening to him.your turn

He is also very generous! At the London Session, everyone got a copy of What to do when it’s your turn, and also a copy of one of the other books he brought to London. Generous with his books. But also, very generous with his knowledge, which he shares freely. So when I went searching for podcasts with or by him, and stumbled upon his Start up school, it feels as if I hit the jackpot!

Here are fifteen episodes of Seth. 

1 – Freelancer or Entrepreneur?
2 – Adjusting the Course?
3 – Creating Scarcity
4 – Appealing to Consumers
5 – Permission and Trust
6 – Raising Money
7 – Advertising and Competitors
8 – Making Ideas Travel
9 – Compromising
10 – Tactics
11 – Cash Flow
12 – The Dip
13 – Building The Truth
14 – The ShipIt Journal
15 – Distinct and Direct

Do what I did. Start at number one and just keep on going all the way to fifteen. Most of these are around twenty minutes long, so it’s doable, and well-spent time at that.

Seth is unrehearsed, as this was all taped during three days of a Startup school he ran with a handful of budding entrepreneurs. Genius as always, sharing wisdom, insight and knowledge, asking questions, the answers of which has the potential to change my life.
If. I. Act. On. It.

As always, that’s the catch. If I don’t take action, it will never change my life. Listening to it, and never ever acting upon what I hear and learn, won’t make a dent in the universe. Not at all. But if I listen. Learn. And act, out of what is mind to do. Now. That’s another story!

Reflection #20 of 24 is a bit of an odd ball, as it’s not from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. Rather, this is a reflection on a podcast with Seth Godin. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

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19/24 – Will I be redundant?

December 19, 2016
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linchpin

Are you afraid of Artificial Intelligence? Does it scare you that soon, computers and robots seem able to do just about everything?

I don’t go down that road, deliberately, as I don’t want to live a life out of fear. Fear for myself, for my children and grand-children, for work – will there be any? -, for being extraneous and redundant.

So. I actually try to do that which only I can do (i.e. be me) really really well, letting my onlyness flow freely into the world, sharing what I see, do, feel, know.

And work will never be scarce. Having a job might be a thing of the past, sooner than we think, but work. I get to do work that matters every day. That’s my prerogative. And your’s as well. Life. Work. There’s no difference. Or at least, there doesn’t have to be.

Living a life that matters means doing work that matters.

What are you doing with your onlyness?

Reflection #19 of 24 from the notes I took and the experience I had at the Seth Godin Q&A-session in London, November 2015. This was my Advent Calendar 2015 on herothecoach.com, and as I loved each and every post so much, I am reusing them for this years’ Advent Calendar here! These reflections will be posted daily from December 1st to the 24th.

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