Tag Archives | Where am I?

Where am I going? Clearing

The third and final of The Three Happiness Questions is Where am I going? To get ready to move onto this last stage of the Ready to Bloom program, start out by reviewing your journal or notebook with your responses to the first two Happiness Questions. It’s important that you’re clear on your answers to both of these questions, because this information and understanding is vital for creating your path forward.

Ready? The next step is clearing out and changing some of the things you may want to get rid of, to enable your progress down your path. It may resemble hacking through the undergrowth with a machete, or it may be more like cutting back some stray brambles. Either way, it’s important to get this done now so you can move forward.

It’s time to make some changes: Continue Reading →

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Where am I? Time Wasters

The other day I wrote about survival techniques: things we do to distract ourselves from the life we’re living so we can simply survive. Sometimes our survival techniques aren’t as drastic as working 16-18 hour days. We may also employ the tactic of distracting ourselves by wasting little chunks of time.

Once we’re aware of the ways we waste time to get through each day, it makes it easier to reduce the time spent on these activities so we can use that time for things that truly make us happy.

Take a moment to sit down with pen and paper and think about this: how much time do you spend each day doing each of the following? Write down your answer for each.

  • Watching television
  • Browsing through social media sites
  • Reading a never ending stream of blog posts
  • Talking on the phone
  • Watching movies
  • Playing games
  • Reading books that don’t you don’t really enjoy

Let me be clear that there’s nothing wrong with any of these activities. They’re all great ways to relax and clear our mind after a long day of work. But if you’re feeling unfulfilled, you may benefit from reducing the time spent on these activities.

What was the total time spent on all of these activities? How much time would you rather spend doing these things? Assuming you’d rather spend less time on these time wasters, what would you do with that extra time you earned each week? What activities would you prefer to do?

What are your primary time wasters? Share them in the comments.

This is an adaptation of an earlier post.

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Where am I? Survival Techniques

For years, I was a workaholic. My previous company was in the hospitality industry, and for many years, I lived on site at one of the hotels. This meant that both guests and staff considered me to be on call 24 hours a day. And why wouldn’t they? I responded to every knock on my door, even at 3 AM.

And when I wasn’t sleeping (or having my sleep interrupted), I was working. For years, I worked 16-18 hour days. I would get up in the morning, head to my office on site, and stay there until going back to my room to sleep. My entire waking life consisted of work. The restaurant’s cooks would deliver my meals straight to my computer: breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They brought me juice and water at regular intervals throughout the day. I thought I had a great system going. It was all organized.

But actually it was more like being in a prison, one I had created for myself: sleep-work-sleep-work, usually for seven days a week. At the time, I managed to convince myself that it was all necessary to keep the business running and growing. But in reality, it was my way of surviving. I didn’t distract myself online, I didn’t chat with friends all day, and I didn’t even own a television. I just worked my way through life.

I was like a horse with blinders on, plodding through each day. And I didn’t even realise there was anything wrong with it until a conversation one day with a family friend who worked with recovering addicts. He explained that addictions were ways of surviving and distracting ourselves from our real problems in life, and that there were many kinds of addicts, including workaholics.

The purpose of this story is to show you that survival comes in different forms. For me, working was a way of surviving. I was deeply unhappy in life, and work kept me busy. It was a way to keep my mind occupied. A way of ignoring that void I felt inside myself, that uncomfortable inner reality.

Maybe your life doesn’t feel that dismal. But unless your Wheel of Life is ranked a 10 out of 10 in each area, it’s likely there’s room for improvement. Take a while to think: what are your survival techniques? What do you do to keep yourself distracted from life? And how can you reduce the time spent on these distractions so you can focus on actually living your life?

As you work on your answers to the three happiness questions (Who am I? Where am I? Where am I going?), you may realize that you no longer need these survival techniques. You’ll be living a happy, fulfilled life. If you feel frustrated or impatient, keep in mind that life is a path. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other, and you’ll be one step closer to an amazing life.

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Ready to Bloom: the book

Sometimes, it helps to have someone to hold us accountable for our goals. Last year, I had a whole list of goals, some of which I achieved, some of which I didn’t. Life took me on many new paths last year, and some of the things I had set out to do at the beginning of the year no longer made sense after certain changes occurred in my life.

One of my goals for last year was to write a book, based on some of the blog posts I’ve shared here, expanding them and adding new questions for reflection and exercises for each theme. The idea is to create a 30 day plan that you can complete in one month, or by taking as long as you like. No pressure.

I’ve had the general outline since last year, and some of the blog posts that I’ve written have been crafted with the book in mind. At this point, I’ve completed 30 out of 40 chapters. I need to complete the remaining 10 chapters, then update with reflections and exercises for each one. I need to flesh out and expand each chapter, and add personal stories for each example. And then I need to start editing the whole thing.

There’s still a lot to do, but this weekend (actually, today) I got a lot more organized and uploaded everything into Scrivener, which I’m trying out to set up the document. My plan is (and always has been) to self publish, and to produce both an e-book and a POD paperback. Probably the e-book first, as that will be easier to get formatted, but I know that I prefer to read non-fiction in print and producing a printed edition of this book is very important to me.

Why am I mentioning this to you now, when this has been in the plans since last year? Because I’m finally getting serious about this. This book will be my “hobby” of sorts, to be worked on during weekends and outside of my regular work. My “regular work,” as you may have noticed if you’ve reached my old URL, is book marketing. And yes…that horrific website needs worked on, too.

The reason that I’m mentioning this book is so you can hold me accountable. I’m still getting a feel for just how long it will take for me to finish the work I have left on this project. Once I get clear on that, I’ll set myself a deadline. More on that soon…

In other news, you’ll have noticed by now that the domain has been updated to Ready2Bloom.com, and that all internal links are no longer working. Oops. I knew that would happen, and I haven’t had time to update them just yet. That’s also in the plans.

Stay tuned for more blog posts. I wrote four of them last Sunday, and scheduled them to go out in the next couple of weeks. A huge thanks to all of you who are still reading. And if you’re new here, welcome!

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Where am I? Top 3 Areas to Improve

It’s time to take a look at your Wheel of Life once again. If it’s been a couple of months since you filled out yours, download a fresh Wheel of Life and re-assess things. Remember, life changes, so it can be very useful to do this exercise a few times a year. Next, re-assess your priorities. Again, if it’s been a while, do this exercise all over again. Life changes (I will never tire of saying that), and our priorities change.

The “Where am I?” question is all about where you are in your life, at this time, in this present moment. That means that your answers to “Where am I?” will change on a regular basis…even from day to day. That doesn’t mean you have to do the “Where am I?” exercises on a daily basis, however it can be helpful to do them once a month or every few months. You’ll be able to feel what frequency is right for you.

The Wheel of Life looks at very important aspects of life: career, finance, personal growth, health/wellness, family, spirituality/religion, social life, attitude, self expression, etc. You choose which eight areas will go on your wheel of life. The priorities exercise will help you get clear on which of these eight areas are most important to you. The next step is to focus on the top three areas.

In the example I shared in a previous post, the person ranked spirituality/religion, personal grown, and family as their top three priorities. Highlight your top three priorities on your Wheel of Life and take some time to reflect.

Look at how you ranked these three areas on your Wheel of Life. How are these top three areas ranked on a scale of 1 to 10?

How do you feel about these rankings? Do these numbers make you feel frustrated, uncomfortable, depressed, satisfied, unfulfilled, content? Note what feelings are stirred up by looking at how you rated each of these top three areas. Write them down, as it may help you clarify your sensations.

Assuming that your rankings were below a 10 in each area, how would you like each area to be ranked? A 10? Something else? What changes you could make in your life to improve these rankings? Create a separate list for each of these top three areas, and write down all of the things you could do differently in your life that might improve your ranking. Keep writing until you can’t think of anything more.

Take a break from your list, and come back to it later: either later on in the day or on another day. Ask yourself what ELSE could you do to improve each of these three areas of your life. Expand on your list. If you find it difficult to think of anything more, challenge yourself to add three more things to each of the three lists.

Now read through these three lists. Decide which of these life-changing actions you will actually take. Set yourself a deadline for completing each one…then get started!

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