Pressure Reveals Ourselves and the Culture We Are Surrounded by.


We can become that which we learn to be under pressure. By observing our thoughts, we can change our response, we can change our action and we can change our habits. We can change ourselves to take smarter action under pressure.

We can become smarter by taking smarter actions.

Top performers perform better under pressure, because they have more time to choose a better response. So can anyone become better at chosen action is the responses are better and you have more time to respond.

Pressure reveals how prepared we are, and how do we react to the pressure: do we have time to evaluate the best choices or do we mindlessly react like animals do?

More than ourselves, the way we react reflects the culture around us. For those who are in the culture, it is difficult to see. From outside its easier to observe that under pressure our behavior is often based or even copied from those who are close to us.

Pressure therefore not only reveals ourselves, it reveals the culture we are surrounded by.

Of course we do influence and get influenced by culture at the same time. What is in our own control is the respond to each situation and that’s it. Do you breathe for four seconds before reply or do you respond straight away? Do you have multiple choices or do you go with the first one that pop  into your heads.

Habit Combinations


Living the last week of 2017 has again draws the mind to the contemplate how did this year go and what  to focus on upcoming years.

This year I’ve become more aware than ever so far about the power of habits. On my own eight and half year conscious growth journey majority of the time I’ve spent unlearning habits and then a bit by bit finding more healthy behaviors. With the exception last two years I’ve dedicated more conscious effort into two habits that seem to reinforce each other very well: reading and writing.

As I pondered a bit about this, I understood that most habits do work in combination. I.e. it’s not only reading nonfiction that turns into writing. It’s the whole process of study, application, dialogue and experience that makes it meaningful.

Best habits work in combination with each other.

What is difficult about habits is thought rarely we can really know if a habit is suited for us and how it is suited for us with too short time span. In the beginning of my personal development journey I read about 30 day trials on Steve Pavlina’s blog. Idea seems to be fine, however now equipped with the experience and understanding I have now, I don’t think the 30 days is nearly enough to test drive any significant habit.

On the other hand I’ve come another interesting way to look at the habits. The advice was originally from some dating scene,  however I think the application is very same with the habits as it is with the partners: we should see through a year first before making any significant advances and commitments in the relationships. Just as with the habits: see the full year first, then decide to move ahead or not.

One year is interesting time, because as humans our moods are also a lot different depending on the time of the year. One year will give the full experience of the year and certainly the timeframe to really know if this habit is for us.

As I mentioned this is for any significant habit, any significant life choice that you would like to make.

Within year the habit starts to solidify as part of your identity. Then what you can do after a year of doing having the habit, is to start experimenting with habit combinations.

I think and talk a lot about writing. At times I feel like writing is the only thing I’ve wanted to do and often times I am craving to write. Yet at times, I wonder, if this is really the thing that I am most enthusiastic about?

However, I’ve noticed writing is a great way for me to express myself and my various ideas. So it’s probably so that writing by itself is more like a medium of communication for me rather than my thing in itself. Despite being a mean of communication, it still is important way to process and think as well, so definitely a habit that I keep experimenting with and finding a way to keep in my routine in combination of all the new and exciting habits to come.

Three Ideas for Fulfilling Life


Values are only values when we are willing to sacrifice for them. So values require a sacrifice. Since values are so deep thing, it would be quite odd to let a day go by without sacrificing for your values. Whatever you want to achieve in life, make sure you know what you are sacrificing for.

Are your values consciously chosen or unconsciously adopted? Be mindful, because values are also what you are sacrificing for. To put it more simply: what you do influences also who you are.

Potentially values can become uplifting positive forces for you; you’ll become person of virtue. There is also the danger that you are sacrificing for values which further increase the downward spiral.

All our actions are indicators of our values. As an example: today I went to the shop and I was willing to pay for the frozen wok mix and broccoli, because I value my health and the nutritious food. From this we can deduce, that when I decided to adopt a new value about health about six months ago, it has started to root, because even after that time I am willing to make such sacrifices.

The same way actions can be indicators of destructive values as well. When I am craving for chocolate and eat way more than two bites I am valuing the short term gratification higher than my long term health.

One might say that such small things do not matter, yet it is exactly these small actions do add up. Tom Rath says it well in his book Eat, Move, Sleep that when it comes to nutrition the net score of each meal or day matters. I really like that thinking, because it simplifies each day into conscious choices which we have the ability to win.

Making the small choices does not happen with willpower or discipline. Making small choices happens by creating habits out of those choices, making those small choices easy and the difficult ones hard. I.e. give away the chocolates, spend most of the time in the veggies department in shop and always have healthy snacks at hand.

Two more ideas to make small choices happen every day:

  1. Make sacrificing for your goals fun. For example, pop hits are short and fun, they become memorable and fun therefore their listeners just can’t stop it. And then we have earworms. And yes, you even might use the power of popular music to associate with your cause.
  2. Connect your values with a bigger cause and a story. It helps if your choice does help others in their i.e. it is easier to refrain from eating beef if you know that beef is one of the most energy inefficient foods on earth and thus a big problem for our climate.

I choose to use the words sacrifice for the values, because until virtues become our second nature, we are easily misguided beings in the midst of many emotions, external influences etc. We must sacrifice the past selves, in order to grow more closely to our potential selves. Fulfillment comes naturally when we strive to live the life of virtue.