Quiet- the last luxury.

Oh man – how often have I heard – ‘The problem with you is you’re in your head too much.’ Guilty as charged. That’s why I like the first thing this writer believes. I prefer being described as a thinker. Having immediately warmed to this woman, I carried on to the rest of her blog which is called Quiet: The Power of Introverts. Go there and enjoy.

This appears in the sidebar:

16 Things I Believe

1. There’s a word for “people who are in their heads too much”: thinkers.

2. Our culture rightly admires risk-takers, but we need our “heed-takers” more than ever.

3. Solitude is a catalyst for innovation.

4. Texting is popular because in an overly extroverted society, everyone craves asynchronyous, non-F2F communication.

5. We teach kids in group classrooms not because this is the best way to learn but because it’s cost-efficient, and what else would we do with the children while all the grown-ups are at work? If your child prefers to work autonomously and socialize one-on-one, there’s nothing wrong with her; she just happens not to fit the model.

6. The next generation of quiet kids can and should be raised to know their own strength.

7. Sometimes it helps to be a pretend-extrovert. There’s always time to be quiet later.

8. But in the long run, staying true to your temperament is the key to finding work you love and work that matters.

9. Everyone shines, given the right lighting. For some, it’s a Broadway spotlight, for others, a lamplit desk.

10. Rule of thumb for networking events: one genuine new relationship is worth a fistful of business cards.

11. It’s OK to cross the street to avoid making small talk.

12. “Quiet leadership” is not an oxymoron.

13. The universal longing for heaven is not about immortality so much as the wish for a world in which everyone is always kind.

14. If the task of the first half of life is to put yourself out there, the task of the second half is to make sense of where you’ve been.

15. Love is essential, gregariousness is optional.

16.“In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” – Gandhi

And now for something completely funny

Love Prince Harry… – who doesn’t? Did someone say Chelsy? That’s not nice. They’re trying to work things out. Give them room, give them time. Give them time in a room.

Aaaanyway – here’s better humour (even) than that – the latest from Hayibo.com. Harry in Afghanistan…It doesn’t bear thinking about. I’m sure he’s nowhere near there. Then again… he is the spare heir.

Wants vs Needs

This has always been an issue with me, weighing up what I want and what I need. My fickle nature was brought into sharp focus some years ago when I was sauntering through a shopping centre with my sister. I pounced on something in an antique shop, declaring eternal love for it and that I absolutely must have it. My sister who can see me a little more clearly than I can myself, suggested we go for a cup of tea somewhere first.

This appealed to my Inner Child and off we went. After the tea, (and carrot cake probably – they make a the best carrot cake upstairs in the Riverside Centre, Rondebosch) she wondered if I wanted to go back and buy the thing I had so desired.

And I couldn’t remember what it was…

A book that’s had a great impact on my thinking is ‘The Richest Man in Babylon’ which suggests you pay yourself first, in that you save 10% of everything you make, before you pay anyone, and also pay 10% to charity. Robert Kiyosaki, a more recent author and famous for his Rich Dad Poor Dad series, says the same. I know this, I agree with it, and I didn’t do it recently when I was paid for three months of hard work. Nearly all the money went on debt, and a few needful things. (Well….)

So this post came to me at a good time – before I completely mess up again, I will redress the situation while I can, and remember that superfluous things create infinite desires. There is no limit – it is never enough, until we ourselves revolt and draw a limit.

It’s the old virtue of rejecting the good for the better. Perhaps I should tattoo it round my bellybutton. Hmmm… I’ve always wanted a tattoo…

Why making good memories is A Good Thing

I firmly and sternly believe that it’s our sacred duty to have as much fun as we can so as to store up as many memorable moments when we’re really old and can’t run around doing cartwheels anymore. Actually I never learned to do cartwheels, but in a dream a few nights ago, I walked on my hands. I couldn’t believe it, but it wasn’t so unbelievable that I realised I was dreaming. Drat – no, I walked around endlessly on my hands in growing amazement, loving every minute. Will have to try again.

What emphasised this concept to me was going out with beloved friends this morning in glorious sunlight to the Tokai Market, with their ailing mother who is struggling with arthritis, severe osteoporosis and early dementia/Alzheimers. We sat and talked a while, she and I, watching the kids and dogs of all kinds running around and parents trying to keep up with them. She wished she could also run around like that, and seemed imprisoned in her body. But she had her memories. We chatted about those, and she observed how one’s mistakes jut out larger than the things one has done right.

I wondered if it would help my 70-year-old self if I wrote a long letter to that future being I will be, reminding myself of what I enjoyed, did right… am proud of. Because it seems we all have no problem remembering our mistakes and feeling remorse and guilt, even if we completely realise how useless it is.

Then this afternoon I found a new post from Stan Goldberg, one of my LinkedIn connections. It seems odd that the two incidents would happen on the same day, but then again, why not?

Here’s how to be happy. Unless you have other plans.

Here’s R L Stevenson’s take on this extremely important subject, acquired via ‘Iain MacDonald’s Intuition Walks newsletter.

Maybe I’ll get off the couch this weekend and actually go. Enjoyment sometimes does need initial effort as has been mentioned quite often around these parts.

<Mind drifts to faded and somewhat torn but oh-so-comfortable orange Diesel sneakers. May need replacing. Shall I get New Balance cross trainers? A cross trainer can do wonders for the motivation. I hope I do it. I may have to call on the Inner Guido, the Freudenmeister who rules fun and laughter once the Inner Nazi has seen to it that all the lucrative work of the past three months has been done and paid for.>

Bring it, Robert. Don’t be shy:
PRESCRIPTION FOR HAPPINESS  …

Make up your mind to be happy.

Learn to find pleasure in simple things.

Make the best of your circumstances.

No one has everything and Everyone has something of sorrow intermingled with the gladness of life.

The trick is to make the laughter Outweigh the tears.

Dont take yourself too seriously.

You can’t please everybody; don’t let criticism worry you.

Don’t let your neighbor set your standards.

Do the things you enjoy doing, but stay out of debt.

Don’t borrow trouble.

Imaginary things are harder to bear than the actual ones.

Since hate poisons the soul, do not cherish enmities and grudges.

Don’t hold post-mortems.

Don’t spend your life brooding over sorrows and mistakes.

Don’t be one who never gets over things.

Do what you can for those less fortunate than yourself.

Keep busy at something.

A very busy person never has time to be unhappy.

For maximum effectiveness, this prescription should be taken as often as needed.

Unlimited refills available.

This prescription for happiness bears remembering and repeating… OFTEN!

By Robert Louis Stevenson

Ditch the bad habits that make your life ugly.

I love the power of habits. They’ve helped to change my life radically.

Being a Taurean helps – all Taureans (well 87.965% of them) are creatures of habit. We build mental rails and happily run on them, leaving our minds free to think about loftier things than minor decisions like should I have sugar in my tea; sex with the under-choirmaster; blonde highlights; dairy; wheat; steak (ever), etc etc

So when I found this article of course I was hooked. My worst habit is procrastination and now I think I see a way through this. I’ll start tomorrow, second thing.

Ever heard of rare earth?

Well I hadn’t… this is an amazing good news article, especially as it is good news for Japan which badly needs some good news round about now. Read to the end, you’ll feel your heart lifting as well, especially as China (the holder and exploiter of rare earth deposits with the usual human cost that China is renowned for) is now not the only possessor of this valuable resource. Rare earths affect all our lives in ways I certainly hadn’t begun to imagine.

So – this is today’s good news post. 

No you haven’t seen everything. You haven’t, really.

When you’re approaching sixty, (as in years old, not sixty samoosas or cupcakes) you tend to be less easily astonished. But this morning I felt the unusual sensation of my eyebrows going up and wrinkling my forehead in a way it hasn’t experienced for many years.

I found this via a random re-tweet on Twitter. It was No. 6 that diddit.

I’m glad I can still feel amazement. I wish it didn’t come with a kicker of utter horror.

Cruelty-free Picnics! Yay!

What a nice concept I found on the WebEcoist. Oy. That took three attempts. Fingers not working. Must. Make. Coffee. Nowish.

Anyway – even if your picnic is on the carpet in front of the fire, try these out – I especially loaf the antipasto Stuffed Picnic Love. Just checking if you’re paying attention there.

And there are no ants when you have fireplace picnics.