290721 – Morning Pages

Recap of yesterday. Thoughts about today. Thoughts about attempts at becoming financially free!

6:51. Woke up a few minutes ago. I think I slept well. I had two dreams that I cant recall p[properly but I know in one, there was Rana Sir giving me some dope about a new client I am pitching to. And in the other, I had a negative dream about some MF client. Otherwise, I feel rested and ok. So that’s a good thing.

Yesterday I was at the beach and I remembered Goo Goo Dolls and I was haunted by the images from the film (City of Angels) that featured that track. Look at this.

I mean I was at the secluded beach per se and there were people sprinkled all over the beach. Each busy with their loved on. Or with their friends. Or something. I just couldn’t get the image out of my mind. I think I need to write a post on that. If only I had the time! #parkedIdeas #toWrite

I also walked some 17K steps during the day. I think I am on track to doing another 100K steps this week. The 17K I did yesterday were in two sets (2K and 14K). It helped that I had a few work calls and I kept going. The good thing was that while walking, I clicked a few pictures.

Here are a few unedited ones.

I have stopped Yoga altogether. I am not even attempting push-ups. Apart from the walk, I am not doing shit. I have learned that I need external motivation to do things. Damn it sucks. And since I am at self-loathing, I am eating a lot. And yesterday I had to fast and I ate three meals. And all ordered from outside. I think I can control this part for sure, if not other things. Let’s see how it goes.

So anyhow. That’s the recap from yesterday.

Today is probably going to be a good day. In the sense that I dont have too many calls planned during the day. I know as the day progresses, things would change and people would demand my time. But I remain committed to controlling my time as much as I can. Let’s see how it goes.

A thought that popped into my head yesterday was that I need to become an influencer for sure. In the traditional sense. And in the non-conventional sense. The deal is, being an influencer gives you a reach that anonymity can’t. And it gives you opportunities that you otherwise would not get. I was talking to someone yesterday and she mentioned that they had used a stand-up comic for a medical brand. Imagine a person who knows how to crack jokes doling out advice on medicine. Ludicrous. But true. Just because she’s an influencer. So that.

I know I dont have what it takes to become one. You know, looks, gift of gab, ability to make conversations, lot of time, narcissism et al. But I know what I have. The desire to be financially free. And I think the path to that is either via a business that works when you sleep. Or your reputation, that works for you while you sleep.

Yeah. For me, influence = reputation.

Naval captured it best in this how to get rich thread. If you haven’t read that yet, here.

So yeah. That.

Oh, I have a recording to do today for the Marketing Connect podcast. I am recording after a few weeks and I am looking forward to it. Let’s see how it goes. The issue would be to get the steps in after the recording. I mean it takes me 2 hours to get in 10K steps and if I finish the recording at 8:30 or so, I will need to be out till 1030 and with all the strays bugging you at all corners of the city, I really dont want to. Anyhow. Let’s see how it goes. If I cant even get the steps in, I should quit the ambition of Everest someday. And closer, the EBC.

Guess this is about it for the day.
Time to get ready and head to Starbucks.

Here’s streaks…

  • OMAD – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 140
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 5
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 230

280721 – Morning Pages

Some crazy thoughts from a day when I cant seem to concentrate.

8:45. Woke up at 7:45. Right now at Starbucks. Lemme show you the view that I have right now.

From the vantage point of where I am sitting at this Starbucks.

Ya, that laptop is not more than 6 months old and looks withered. That is coffee. I am tripping on it for 2 days. Enough with ghaas ka paani.

So, here’s things that are at the top of my head.

A. When I woke up, I was more tired than usual. Probably walked too much. Probably stressed too much. Probably it was all the food I ate yesterday. Oh, I would have had some 5000 calories yesterday, if not more.

B. I can’t seem to concentrate at all. I don’t know what’s wrong. As I am writing this post, I am thinking about my relationships. When I am delivering a presentation, I am playing chess. When I am showering, I am thinking of ideas. When I am walking, I am on the phone. And all this after I’ve seen Dandapani videos like there’s no tomorrow. So clearly, there’s no effect on me. Need to think about it. Let’s see how or when.

C. I am not proud that I have moved to FB. Without any Twitter, I am not making any connections. Without any Instagram, I am not getting inspired. And FB sucks. I can’t put my thumb on what’s wrong with it but there’s something terribly wrong with FB as a platform. It’s making me do things that I typically would not do. I mean I am adding random people as friends and then am getting into small talk. I mean I do that on Twitter and Insta as well but that’s more to do with appreciating someone’s work or something cool. But on FB, am being exactly what I don’t want to be. I am also getting sucked into conversations that make no sense. Like this writer wanted help with his book. He wanted people to review. I volunteered. And then he sends me a long-ass message saying that he would only send the book if I agree that he can sue me if I plagiarise it. I am like, WTF!

D. Been writing a prompt a day for PPP for the last few days. Here’s the prompt for the day. “You are a cop and you recently read a story about a gang of art thieves that specialize in stealing figurines from remote temples. You need to lay a trap and capture the gang. How would you go about it?”

E. The road to EBC is looking harder with each passing day. I am not working at all. The only thing I have remained consistent since I started tracking is the walks. I think it is because I don’t need to put in any additional effort to walk. Plus it allows me to see the scenery. Wait. With that argument, I should be able to run /jog as well. But for some reason, I can’t seem to!

So yeah. That’s about it. Moving on with the day. Here’s streaks.

  • OMAD – 0. Ate like 5000 calories yesterday.
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 139
  • #noCoffee – 0. Been having coffee last two days.
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 4
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 229

270721 – Morning Pages

Did not have a lot to write today. Wrote a disjointed post about things on the top of my head.

6:30. Up a minute ago. I have fogged eyes, sore body. I think it’s because of all the walking I’ve been doing. No, I am not doing anything. I had plans to do push-ups, yoga, Jal Neti, stairs and I dont know what else. But for some reason, I am not doing anything except walking. There has to be a deeper thing at play here. I mean why am I willing to endure sore legs and blisters in my toes and I am shying away from other things? Maybe because walking around allows me to see the world outside? Maybe there’s a change in scenery? Maybe it’s effortless? I dont know. I will have to think deeper. Let’s see when.

So I have some disconnected thoughts from here on. Lemme use bullets.

A. Jetha (one of the coolest young people I know that is also very ambitious) decided to start a periodic letter to his connections. He says that I have inspired him. I am not sure though. Each person knows inherently what they want to do. And how they do those things. People like me only show the path. It’s the choice of the recipient if they want to walk on it.

B. While I was thinking about relationships and how to make things work, I stumbled upon an idea. If and when I get into another one, I think I will gamify it. I mean any relationship is a lot of hard work. But I am learning that someone like me needs to put in all the more hard work than others. I have very high expectations from life and thus from my partner. And of course, I am willing to do a lot – I hope I do. I mean others can only tell. Looking at things from my lens, I think I will only spot good things.

C. The initial excitement about EBC has now waned off. Now it’s the rigor needed to get there. You know, working out and all that.

Wait. I have covered this already when I lamented that I am not doing enough. Must buckle up. Because once I am up there, I will probably not have anything to fall back on.

D. I was watching something on Youtube (or was it Facebook; yes I am spending a lot of time on FB) and I saw this lady making a castle with a form board. I think it reminded me of that one large project that I want to pick where I do things by hand. You know, solve a big jigsaw, create a painting (even though I am not a painter), make a table. Something. Where I see tangible improvements on a day-to-day basis. And I use my hands (rather than just brains, like you do in a book). I really want to pick a project like that.

The thing is, however, that such a project goes against the ethos of having a house full of things. Even to make a jigsaw, I need to have some space in the house where I could lay the pieces out. If I have to make something, I need tools, paints, colors, and whatnot. So, this goes against the very ethos of what I want to stand for – you know, minimalism.

A few days ago (160721) I had decided that I will keep a running counter with arguments in favor of and against minimalism. I had said,

Wait. I have an idea. I will keep a running score of arguments in favor of and against minimalism. By the time I come back to Mumbai (after Diwali), depending on where the score is, I will move in that direction. So, the in-home chef is against minimalism. I am at -1 on that.

Wrote on 160721.

So, I add another -1 to the streaks. Let’s see where I end up once I am back.

E. Here’s a photo from yesterday. The only one I took while walking. I was out and about for more time but this is the only one I took.

An unplanned shot on the streets where I was telling friends about a sale at Ikea.

So that. I dunno what else to write. Time to get going and get started with the day. Here’s streaks…

  • OMAD – 1
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 138 (I will start with this soon)
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 3
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 228

260721 – Morning Pages

I talk about how I am lagging on the road to EBC, some gyaan I doled out about writing and some random rant.

8:46. Starbucks, Versova. Woke up late. Slept late. I am playing too much chess. No, I am not good at it. No, I dont like it that much that I am playing it all the time. Just that I play chess instead of scrolling Instagram and Twitter mindlessly. You know, mind games :D.

The dark clouds dont seem to dispel. I know it will heal with time. I know time will take its own sweet time. I know I need to remain patient and wait for acchhe din to come back. I just hope they come back soon.

So, that.

Ok, the road to EBC is not smooth at all. Here’s my progress from the first week when I started thinking about it seriously.

Week of 19th July

The first few days were good. And then the next 3-4 were all downhill. In terms of what I am doing (eating!) and not doing (working out / walking etc). Apart from the walk goals, missing on all others. Need to pull up the socks. I don’t want to die on the mountain!

The only silver lining would be last night when I walked 24K steps (to complete 100K in the week). I think there are two things at play here. And I have to mention those.

A. AnAg created a group with a few friends on an app that tracks the steps that each person is putting on. I use that app to give competition to myself and that helps me do better. I’ve realized that I am hyper-competitive and I must keep this lesson in mind. Damn, this social proof is a thing!

B. I happened to hear Disha talk about her experience as a triathlete. And then she talked about other women that are mothers and yet find the time and energy to be competitive triathletes. She wrote a book about their stories. Here. I heard her talk while I was walking and I told myself that if there are people that can battle personal issues, societal biases, lack of money, and all that, why can’t I put in the 24K required to reach 100K!

I wish I was this competitive about making money. Or about using my time judiciously!

Anyhow. Moving on.

I spent some time with a few young writers that are helping me put a content engine at Podium. While talking to them, I realized yet again that I am a coach material than anything else. Or may be I am not and I am merely rationalizing? I dont know. But it was great fun to give gyaan. Here are the top three things that I told them…

a. Create a sacred space that you use specifically for writing. This could be within your house. Or could be a Starbucks. This space should not be mixed with other activities (specifically recreational) and each time you enter the space, you get in the zone. Think temples, churches, mosques etc. Each time you enter, you know you are now expected to behave in a certain manner.

b. Make writing your bitch. Simple. Inspiration must strike you when you want it to. Not the other way around. An easy way to do this is to ensure that you write every day. I picked this from Julia Cameron. And today is the 228th day on the trot that I have published a piece. So, clearly it works!

c. Don’t write to impress. Write because you want to express something. If you think words are not flowing, assume you are writing a longish message to your best friend. Or a colleague. Even if it’s a regular update on how the coffee today sucked, you better write. Plus, you should be ok if no one reads. The intent is to not get read. The intent is to write. Publish. The audience is the unintended side effect. Of course, at a point, you want the audience as well. But for the time being, write for yourself.

So that.

Guess this is about it for the day. Need to get going with things. This week is a busy one. And no, no photos from yesterday to show off. Should’ve clicked some.

Here’s streaks…

  • OMAD – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 137
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 2
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -1
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 227

250721 – Morning Pages

SG’s shades of grey.

6:45. Just like the last few days, I woke up once again with this sense of sadness and tinge of melancholy in my head. I believe I am a strong person and if going thru what I am going thru is hard for me, I can’t imagine how it would be for a common person.

Nothing seems to be interesting. Or exciting. Not even watching Taarak Mehta, leave alone those complex films with characters that have shades of grey. Grey. Or Gray. Or whatever it is. That’s how I feel. Maybe I am not getting enough Vitamin D. Or B12. May be I am not getting enough human connection. Maybe I am not getting enough money. Maybe… I mean I dont even know what is lacking in life. I mean I know what is but I cant seem to pinpoint and get an antidote. I feel grey. Feeling blue, if you will.

And it’s affecting how I live. And who I am. I am eating like a pig. I have fallen off my exercise. Whatever little I do. I am avoiding friends and people I know. I was supposed to go for breakfast with a friend of 18 years. I skipped it. I am not delivering at work. I have book to edit. I have a deck to make. I have some emails to send. I havent even checked my emails in 2 days. Things are lagging behind. I am not honoring my commitments. I am being a dick to people that care for me. If they do actually care and not just faking it. I dont even know who’s for real and who’s not. Parents, yes. SG2, yes. M, maybe. Rest I dont know. Everyone can see that I am slacking. It’s affecting my relationship with those people. Wait. I am not being a dick. I am merely aloof. Dont think people care if I stay away. They havent told me if they do. Thing is, I am painting myself in a corner. I am running fast on the negative spiral that is probably at the rock bottom and there’s this dark abyss that seems to go as deep as the globe itself.

I dont know how to fix things. I dont know who to talk to. And what to talk about, if I get to talk to someone. Even if I found someone, I won’t know what to say. This blog, this morning page is an attempt to talk. And yet I dont know what to talk about. I mean can’t pinpoint. I just feel blank. You know what I am saying? I can’t afford a shrink. No fast cars for me. Fuck fast. I dont have a car that I could just take off on. And even if I had, where would I take off to? The roads are fine but then apart from the feeling of escape, I am not sure where I would reach? And why would someone care?

As the self-help, self-care, self-preservation measure, I have probably seen the whole of youtube that talks about Buddhism, Taoism, Stoicism, Nihilism, and all the other -isms. Even Dandapani’s videos aren’t helping. I’ve read about the stages of grief and I am probably between denial and catharsis. Of what, I am not sure. I know time will solve whatever is affecting me. I just need to get thru this phase. I know this too shall pass. I know nothing lasts forever and these ebbs and flows are part and parcel of life and death.

I hope soon.

Anyhow. Lemme try to get some cheer on these pages. Lemme try and write about good things from yesterday. There are a few, to be honest, but let me try nonetheless.

A. I found a Starbucks that was accepting customers.
The one at the airport. I went there and found a comfortable chair and table that did not wobble. That in itself is an achievement, considering how busy these outlets can get.

B. I heard a full podcast after a while.
On PradX’s recommendation. This one. Got some interesting ideas. No, despite the interestingness, I am not in the position to absorb those. Or react to those. Or act on them.

C. Wore shoes.
Trying to get used to the idea of feet stuck inside other things. Walked almost 18000 steps. As of today, I am at some 76K steps for the week. I would have loved to clock 100K steps for the week. But looks unlikely. Maybe next week.

Oh, while walking, took the jetty across to Madh and walked about for a bit there. Even though it’s 15-20 minutes away from all the hustle and bustle of Mumbai as a city, it’s still a village. I think Madh could be a good place to live. The only challenge is that it’s way too far from public places that I typically hang out at – Starbucks, Airport, M’s place, etc. I will think about it once I am back after Diwali. If I am back. Yeah, I am strongly considering quitting Mumbai. Even if my dreams of films and fame and bank balance can only happen here. Actually, I am at the place in life right now where I want to quit every damn thing that defines me. I need a fucking reset button.

D. Here’s a new thing.
Each day I will upload a selection of photos I click during the day. And write a line about those. Here are two from yesterday.

So yeah, this is about it I guess. Just a few good things. All forced. In attempts to get some sanity going in my head.

Anyhow.

I need to get going with the day. Which means I will go park myself at the Starbucks at the airport and work. At least pretend to. And then, maybe, try to.

Let’s see how much I can. There’s a lot open at my end. Can’t continue to slack for too long. Whatever I have is because I have worked hard and have proven to be a reliable person to work for.

I just hope I am back to being destiny’s child again where doors open for me and things happen without me trying real hard. Inshallah soon. I’ve had enough of this greys and sadness and mediocrity and all that. Pray for me, if you do.

Here’s streaks…

  • OMAD – 0. For the second day on the trot, ate so much crap that I’ve undone all the good work that I did in the first few days. I am already hungry. I will see if I can skip food today.
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 136
  • #noCoffee – 0. Had coffee yesterday. Maybe that’s why I couldnt sleep?
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 1. Walked 17K steps.
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -1
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 226