Motivational Mondays – 14/09/20

Hello fine readers and welcome back to my Motivational Mondays Post!

The only weekly newsletter to teach you about contraception before you have sex and then offer you a cigarette afterwards…

Following a 4:3:2:1 approach, it contains 4 exceptional thoughts from me (ha), 3 admittedly better quotes from others, and 2 things I’ve been reading and/or listening to this week that have helped me grow.

As always I’ve finished with 1 silly story to lighten your Monday blues… 

Much Love,

AP2 X


4 x Thoughts From Me:

Never forget that someone built the road you drive on. 

If you only ever wait until it’s stopped raining, you’ll always be starting from the back. Always start now. Don’t wait until you feel like it, do it especially if you don’t. Make a point of going for a run in the freezing rain. Champions of their minds override their negative feelings and thought patterns. They don’t live in absence of them. One of my core vulnerabilities is a belief that I’m not capable. It’s something I’ve learnt to understand and live with. As a result I’ve become very good at getting on with life despite a desire to crawl under the covers. It took a long time but I’ve gained a huge amount of confidence from it. What was once a weakness has become a strength. The real beauty has come from realising that only through action can you put your demons to bed. The time to start is always now!

Remember that even a harsh truth can be followed with words of encouragement. Kindness can always be used to soften the blow. If you’re confronting someone about something you feel they need to hear, it’s important to deliver your truth in such a manner that it will be received. If your delivery is too harsh, regardless as to whether you’re right or not, it becomes extremely difficult for the other person to receive. When it comes to being honest, kindness is king.

Something I didn’t believe a year ago: If you hurt someone else you hurt yourself. If you look deeply you’ll see how every action ripples out to the world and back at you. One man eats one bat in one wet market in one tiny corner of the globe and the whole world reels. The butterfly effect is very real. The more attention and care we can pay to each and every precious moment the better it is for all of us. 


3 x Quotes From Others:

“Optimism and pessimism can coexist. If you look hard enough you’ll see them next to each other in virtually every successful company and successful career. They seem like opposites, but they work together to keep everything in balance.” – Morgan Housel (Source: James Clear newsletter)

“Always, Always, Always Believe In Yourself, Because If You Don’t, Then Who Will, Sweetie? So Keep Your Head High, Keep Your Chin Up, And Most Importantly, Keep Smiling, Because Life’s A Beautiful Thing And There’s So Much To Smile About.” – Marilyn Monroe (Source: turtlequote.com)

“We are certainly capable of writing something poorly. No one has writing something poorly block.” – Seth Godin (Source: wanderingambivert.com)


2 x Things That Helped Me Grow

1 – This Old Tim Ferris Podcast interview with Maria Popova on Writing, Workflow, and Workarounds. For those who aren’t familiar, Maria Popova is the author and creator of brainpickings.org. I’ve been a subscriber of her weekly email for a while now and absolutely love her work. You could spend hours upon hours getting lost in the treasure trove that is her blog. While this episode is a little old now her advice about blogging is timeless (I guess until people stop blogging of course). I found her advice about leaving comments on other blogs to be particularly insightful. This is very much an interview about blogging. Notes and quotes below.

MY PERSONAL NOTES AND QUOTES:

  • Inhabiting your own identity is a perpetual project. 
  • What do you do? I do some reading and some writing with some thinking in between. I’m always thinking, how can I live a valuable life? My blog is a record of my thinking. 
  • “You should focus on just in time information, not just in case information”
  • I try to put out – “Timely and timeless material.”
  • “A true artist takes no notice whatever of the public” –  Oscar Wilde
  • A human struggle to be seen and understood for who you are – this is how all art comes to be. 
  • I don’t need to know how my work feels for other people. I care more about it reaching people in some way. How they react is less of a concern. But I do want it to reach them and talk to them in some way. 
  • People fail to understand that they should write and create the things they want to consume – not what they think someone else does.
  • Something I’ve been struggling with. The delicate balance between presence and productivity. 
  • Routine and rituals are a control mechanism that help to try and restore a bit of order to the messiness of life but that’s not all there is. 
  • I’m a huge proponent of sleep. To make the connections necessary for my creative process I need my brain to be alert. When I’m sleep deprived it doesn’t function nearly as well. A lack of sleep is total failure of priorities and self respect. 
  • Note taking – make an idea index. (Beautiful language or quote index) Write ideas/major themes then write page numbers where they occur. On the page highlight the particular passage you are thinking about. 
  • How much are we mistaking the doing for the being?
  • Philosophy used intelligently in an attempt to reclaim it – to understand it is the only way to figure out how to live.
  • The great Roman philosophers are just as relevant now as they were then. Their advice is timeless. 
  • The duo that causes all inspiration: desperation and frustration. 
  • It’s interesting that on that intellectual level we understand that delegating tasks is a sign of strength- to divy up based on your priorities but on physiological level it feels like death to give up control of the small things that are weighing you down/holding you back. 
  • Comments. The problem with snap judgments – writing a comment based on a fraction of the article or just the headline. This is something social media perpetuates. I can’t deal with it so I don’t.
  • “If you don’t have the patience to read something, don’t have the hubris to comment on it.” 
  • People have a hard time with criticism- why? I think people have less difficultly when someone has disagreed with or dislikes what they have to say. People have a harder time when they feel they’ve been misunderstood. 
  • The main kind of anguish is when you’re not being seen for who you are. When you’re being misunderstood. This culture of commenting without taking the care to understand the person you are talking to. To understand what they are about is a big problem. 
  • You have to be merciless about deleting comments where there’s clearly no patience or thinking shown. 
  • My blog is my home. If you’re gonna come and be an idiot you’re not welcome. I think of it as my living room. If you’re gonna show up drunk you’re not welcome. Period. 
  • I don’t want to promote a culture that is apathetical to why it is I do what I do. 
  • A culture of news is a culture without nuance. My blog/writing is about understanding the nuance. 
  • Guilt is the flipside of prestige. Both are terrible reasons for doing something. 

2 – This brilliant Mark Manson article, Why We All Need Philosophy. For those who doubt the importance philosophy plays in one’s life please take the time to give this a read. It’s a long read but well worth it! I’ll leave you with one quote from the article below.

“Philosophy teaches us the fundamental techniques for finding meaning and purpose in a world where there is no given meaning, no cosmic purpose. Philosophy gives us tools to determine what is likely to be important and true and what is likely frivolous and made-up. Philosophy shows us principles to help direct our actions, to determine our worth and values, to generate a magnetic field to direct our internal compass, so that we may never feel lost again.”


1 x Silly Thing To Make You Smile:

I’ll start this post by wishing my very silly boy a very happy birthday. He turned exactly 2 years old today!

As if to mark the occasion my son began expressing himself in a number of surprising ways this week.

First up he decided to start calling my wife, quote, “big fat mama.” Which would be hilarious if my wife wasn’t exactly 23 weeks pregnant…

Oh wait.

At any rate neither of us know where on earth he picked this unfortunate turn of phrase.

If only that were the worst of it!

During another more shocking episode last night at the dinner table he started shouting, “Ass! Ass!” – two times before laughing to himself.

My wife commented, “where on earth did he learn that from?”

I looked at my wife very seriously while replying, “I honestly don’t know, but I’m sure we can get to the bottom of it.”


Thanks ladies and gentlemen. I’m here all week!

Till next time…

Have a Happy Monday Everybody!

P.S. Don’t forget to exercise your silly muscle this week!

One bonus question for you all:

What does philosophy mean for you?

(Thank you all so much for reading. If you have any suggestions, thoughts or ideas about today’s weekly post I’d love to hear from you in the comments at the bottom.)


PREVIOUS MONDAY POST:

Motivational Mondays – 07/09/20

13 thoughts on “Motivational Mondays – 14/09/20

  • I liked the Marilyn Monroe quote. The anecdotes about your two-year-old are hilarious. Some of the suggestions made in the article, I am already doing, and they work well for me. I keep a list of ideas for poems I want to write and keep working titles in my draft folder. All the best! Cheryl

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Cheryl. Yeah I love that Marilyn Monroe quote as well. Glad you enjoy the stories about my son. I have an ideas list as well but it’s not very structured. I find I start writing several posts but never finish them before I move onto the next. Loads of half finished bits and pieces that get left for weeks if not months before I circle back to them. I’m good with ideas but not so good at completing them. Wishing you best, AP2 🙏

      Like

  • ack, I only saw this today(ahaha, my email didn’t notify me of anything…), but it was much needed from all the stress that I had piling up. Your son sounds absolutely adorable, and from experience from being a babysitter, often times, you never know where kids pick up their language ;).
    And I agree with the fact that even if you tell the truth, there’s always something kind you can say to soften the blow.
    Stay safe! ~Janelle

    Liked by 2 people

  • “People have a hard time with criticism – Why? I think people have less difficultly when someone has disagreed with or dislikes what they have to say. People have a harder time when they feel they’ve been misunderstood.”

    This has hit home because often I feel misunderstood and blame myself for not being articulate enough. This leads to people talking over me and since I don’t like shouting contests I just withdraw all my energy from the conversation.

    I figure even if I have two ears and one mouth sometimes it’s important being given a platform to tell your side of the story so that your perspective can be understood. This makes people think that I despise them for some reason especially being empathic I feel drained by being around narcissistic people.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I feel ya Francis. Often being misunderstood is a result of the other person not listening. Many of us are quick to assert our beliefs before hearing those of others. I wouldn’t take it personally. Listen carefully and then respond mindfully in order to get your point across. I often find if I’m patient during a conversation and wait for the right moment the point you want to make comes across more effectively. Rarely do heated debates work – two people shouting and no one listening. There will always be haters – don’t worry about them – speak your truth and the right people will listen. 🙏

      Like

  • As always your Monday motivation is living up to its glory in my opinion. I always love reading it and it’s always a source of inspiration in my life. Always leaves me with a smile too… I appreciate your hard thinking and desire to better others along with yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

  • I really identify with two parts of this post. First: speak the truth in love. Truth is not always about being nice because some things need to be said, and they will hurt. But as you say, there are better ways to express this truth. Second: the quote ‘no one has writing poorly block.’ My sister and I had a good chuckle at this. The first draft of anything will always need work. Push through the feeling telling you to stop and get it done.

    You are clearly following lots of the little gems of wisdom in this post.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Hamish. Thanks for stopping by again. I agree honesty is the best medicine even if it doesn’t always taste very nice.

      Yeah that Seth Godin quote is brilliant and so true. Just sitting down to write is the most important thing regardless as to whether it’s any good. Often you can start slow and find your way after you get going. Sometimes you can jump straight in and write some of your best stuff. Sometimes it’s garbage and needs a great deal of work (or ripping up). Either way none of that happens if you don’t show up and write! Thanks Hamish. Wishing you well 🙏

      Liked by 1 person

  • Amen! Thank you for more wisdom. Most successful writers say you have to write thousands if not millions of bad words to get through to the good ones. We have to do or best to enjoy that process, because in the grand scheme of things every word we put care and effort into its worth it. Even if it’s not something we think lots of people will want to read.

    Peace to your and your family, especially that 2 year old of yours. Sounds like an absolute lark. 😊

    Liked by 1 person

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