Life, an Incredible Opportunity

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Life is an opportunity that over 108 billion people before us have had and then as lost as is the nature of life: there is a beginning and an end. Therefore to be alive is wonderful opportunity to do something!

In addition to biological evolution, there is also the evolution of culture and spirit. Spiritual evolution means becoming more human. As G.K. Chesterton put it: “a dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it.” We are blessed with brains that create the human mind, which allows not only to go with the flow, but to go upstream or any other direction we wish.

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” ― Mahatma Gandhi

The difference and human blessing of life lies in our brain, which allows us not only to live, but to learn and live better as well. This means we are no longer bound only to progress through the biological evolution, but through cultural evolution.

Other animals certainly are social and therefore have the ability for cultural evolution as well. However, very few of them are able to stop and contemplate on life on such level as humans can. We learn comparatively fast and therefore our culture, way of doing things evolves as well.

On individual level, it’s our own decision to exercise this superpower of choice each day. Well actually thinking and deciding something new for each day would be possible, but not very convenient. Although we have the ability to contemplate, it is rather energy intensive. Therefore it’s useful to use both of the abilities, the ability to contemplate and the ability to do in a harmonious way.

Contemplate and discover your values and goals. Then work on these goals every day habitually.

Do not dream of life without work. Work is the opportunity, ability to create something greater than what you were given. What will then happen? According to the law of karma, if you do good things, good things will happen to you.

Put your priorities straight using the priority category method and then live your purpose and plan.

In life you will get more things done, if you are really good at prioritizing and deciding what is important and where you can add the most value. You will be able to create more value and well-being to your environment, which then again means that you will also receive more and then we all flourish.

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I’ve taken it as my mission to help other people to realize the love for life. This comes from my personal experience with the meaninglessness of life, which led to depression and sickness.

Have a great evening!

Janne

Work for Yourself

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Work for yourself, so that you may grow and learn to be strong.

Work for yourself, so that you may nurture the growth of many.

Work for yourself with a purpose in mind.  Purpose is something you can work towards for everyday as long as you live, work for your purpose.

Great feeling does not mean great results

 

In my early professional days I learned a valuable lesson: great feeling or state of mind does not guarantee great results. However what the great feeling does help, is to produce the action that is prerequisite for the results.

Therefore, learning to change the negative into positive emotions, into a great feeling is really useful skill that will in the long run  alter the odds to your favor.

Another thing I learned about feelings such as anguish and anxiety is that we are not really our emotions. We can create our emotional life, but we are not what we are feeling at the moment. If emotions are the wind, then we must learn to sail with that wind, to alter and use them to get where we need to be.

Greatest tool, to discover and tame the emotional root causes I’ve so far stumbled upon is stillness called meditation. Second greatest is journaling and writing, which allows to let loose the emotions in non destructive way. Also talking about them can help.

Often I’ve found great creativity bursts after talking about anxieties, because it somehow helps to relax and asses them more objectively and thus also come to a solutions through that point of view.

Emotions are part of us, we are not our emotions. To conclude, here is something that Nelson Mandela found to keep him going, and something that pop onto my mind while trying to scrape together thoughts after a long day.

Enjoy Invictus poem by WILLIAM ERNEST HENLEY.

Out of the night that covers me,

     Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

     For my unconquerable soul.

 

In the fell clutch of circumstance

     I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

     My head is bloody, but unbowed.

 

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

     Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

     Finds and shall find me unafraid.

 

It matters not how strait the gate,

     How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

     I am the captain of my soul.

Growing, nurturing and gathering those golden ideas

World is full of ideas. By themselves ideas do nothing and are not worth much. With right kind of knowledge and skills, certain ideas start to get some value, but otherwise…not much.

The idea is just neuron flare in our brains highlighting a bit more than usual number of connections.

Some ideas feel really powerful, then I would guess a lots more neurons are firing?

In any case, the idea generation shouldn’t be the problem, it’s the ground where the ideas are growing from and then capturing the fruits that the ground bears. What you are spending your conscious awake time feeding to your unconscious will reflect the kinds of ideas that will pop to your head later on.

In Linchpin Seth Godin outlines it really well, what separates an artist from not one, is one key thing: SHIPPING. And shipping means making your idea into something real by deadline.

Ship it.

To ship we need to have a starting point, which is the information we spend our days with. Really good rule of thumb for the quality of the content is indeed peer reviews. Reviewing, and all kinds of filtering has advantages: it will provide you with the clearer picture of what to expect and of course allows you to focus your time to the content that serves you very best. Published books have traditionally gone through many sets of filters, which have made them really good format for knowledge. In the other spectrum is all the content that doesn’t go through that many filters to be published like video streams or this blog for example. Internet provides pretty good system to find the relevant content through popularity and peer reviews. However if you only depend on the others to rate what you need, you are in trouble called bubble.

After you’ve begun to feed your mind with great ideas, information and knowledge. Now all you have to do is to live your life, try to think about what you’ve learned a bit and record all the thoughts that will pop up. Once you’ve enough knowledge to judge those ideas, you’ll see which ones are the golden ones and which ones are not. I really recommend taking notes all the time and when you cannot take notes, record them on your smartphone or something, anything!

When you recognize an idea that’s worth actionable, please do ship it, make it real!

Also, I want to add that if you ask for someone to help, to teach you something for example. Please record the lesson by taking notes or any kinds of memory tools! It’s ridiculous to ask for others to share golden thoughts and not to appreciate this by taking notes.

In my work, I never have to ask twice about same thing and I take pride in that. My wish is that more people would realize the value of note taking, because only when we capture all the ideas we can begin to recognize the golden ones and then to ship those.