When I was a teenager, I was desperate to go out into the world and earn my first big buck. Coming from the ex soviet block, at that time that wasn’t a lot to me. I come from a middle class family where both parents work hard to feed us and provide us with decent education. I have never had pocket money, nor a rich uncle or grandma. Don’t get me wrong, there was always food on a table and house almost always warm during winter cold days. As my 18th birthday were approaching, I knew that in order to earn, I must get out. Go abroad and earn. Experience adventure. There were only handful of skills I could do and no resume I can build my offering. Basically I could coach tennis and teach basic computer programming. Things I have both loved.
Browsing Category: Mementos
In every crisis there is an opportunity. With COVID19, the crisis is now. And if you think it will go away anytime soon, I believe you are mistaken. The clock is ticking and there is not much time left until the whole world, will be in the biggest debt crisis humanity ever faced. I see it from the first hand, I am a trader and the measures governments and central banks around the world are doing are devestating not just for us but for generations to come. The herd mentality and strength of the state is brutally scary. The way people are assembled in lines, waiting like a piece of code ready to be deployed, obeying orders from the top is just astounding. I am not saying let’s not do that, it is just super scary how manipulated human race and masses became so quickly. There is a beautiful chinese prover: Three Men Make a Tiger. People will believe anything if enough people tell them it’s true. If one person tells you there’s a tiger roaming around your neighborhood, you can assume they’re lying. If two people tell you, you begin to wonder. If three say it’s true, you’re convinced there’s a tiger in your neighborhood and you panic. The world has paniced. But let’s no get away into doomsday scenario building and lets look at opportunities. We have rougly 6-12 months until it starts to get really bad. So unless we found cure (both medical and political), we have to adapt and prepare to what is going to come. I believe there are areas of opportunities:
A quick look into the pursuit of excellence can reveal truth we do not want to hear. That truth is hard, unpredictable, assymetrical work. The truth is that it is not about symmetrical input/output. I put x amount of hours , I will get y result. Sometimes our course has to change. Take all the people that have plans, goals in their head about their future before COVID19 came. Understanding that Systems are more importans then Goals is one of the crucial principles. Taking aside the brutal aspect of what will happen in the futuer with current virus development, I want to talk about deep learning. Moment, when magic happens. When those assymetrical hours of work start to compound. Many times, we start with something. An idea. But we are so fucked up by the reactionary world we have been living in that we want quick answers. In this environemnt, with this approach, nothing like deep work cannot happen. You are not payed by the minute, by the input. You are paid by staring into the idea that might lead to nowhere. By sitting, thinking and observing you might start develop the idea bit further. It is that moment when your brain datacenter start to connect contexts that were not obvious at first sight. The more time we spend with the idea, we play with it. We break it down, build it up, leave it and break it up again. That is the moment of magic. An unmeasurable assymetric moment when we finally throw all the garbage out and start seeing emerging opportunity. By taking that opportunity and testing hypothesis around it we can take the idea from the total garbage idea to something viable. By testing it we can build conviction around that idea. Bit by bit, we build that conviction so one day, we are ready. And it all started with one thing, an idea a shitload of time doing the deep work so we are ready, to go big.
When we are hurt, when something physically or psychologically hurts, when we are hit by the train of our emotions and self-talk our first reaction is to fight it back. To get angry about our condition. It is rooted deep down in our intuition. Fight or flight. Right? Over the years I have slowly been discovering that one must act quite counter-intuitively. Instead of fighting whatever we feel and don’t want to feel (physically or mentally), we simply let it in. We start the kind dialogue with whatever condition we dislike. We smile at the feeling and let all emotions settle in. We remind ourself and these emotions, that even if we would have to live with them for the rest of our life, we are fine and we love them for what they are. For being just the condition. We simply, surrender and radically accept them. With love and compassion. Only then I have found out we can start the healing process. Over the last year I have been fighting for my health to get it back where it once was. I have been disappointed over and over every time something I hoped for did not work. New treatment, new approach, new supplement, new doctor. The more I hoped, the more I was disappointed. These disappointments brought over time more and more anxiety and fear that my health will never be like it used to be. I had to change that mindset. I had to surrender in order to start healing the mind first, before I could start healing my body. It is the first step. Because as the saying goes: what you resist, persist. So surrender next time you are hit and maybe this time you can change the course of your life.
The more time I spend time with things and people who matter, the more I realize how we all live in this illusion of what a good life is. In this race for life. Of course if anyone told my 20 years old self, that a goal of life is to live in peaceful truth and kindness, I would consider him a loser who never achieved anything. But what a tremendous peace brings living in truth, truth to yourself, your limits, your own speed without constantly measuring dicks with others and caring for approval of total strangers. Learning about richness of live, being curious, sharing with others, caring for others while accepting fully who we really are without constantly judging if we are too slow or to fast, if we have more or less and if we will achieve this or that.
When other people are hurt, fear has captured their mind. That fear can produce anger, self-pitty, depression, judgmental behavior and other states of mind. Depending on the severity, people who are hurt take actions they usually later regret. Their judgment is clouded with these emotions and they stop being rational. In severe cases, they attack you. Usually verbal attack is the simplest form of an attack. Especially in written form when they feel safe and not threatend (think about all the internet trolls for example). They are hurt and the way they feel better about themself is to get the fear out in form of an attack so they can feel better for themself. Little they know, that anger produces even more anger and they are by this behaviour creating new version of themself that is even more sad, more insecure and looks even more stupid in front of their internal judge and others. Sometimes we can get absorbed into their world thinking that it is about us! This is so typical for our mind. That the attack, reaction, nasty behaviour is about us. About person who is being attacked, yet it is totally the opposite. Their behavior is completely outside of our control and therefore we should not spend a single minute in their circle of fear and most importantly, we should not take it at all personally.
Sometimes we don’t tell the full truth or bend the truth. Sometimes we hide things for the sake of not being judged. We either do that to look good (to get approval of others) or to avoid fears of not being hurt by their reaction (judgement of others). Every time we do that, we are getting further from who we are not accepting us in its full spectrum. Maybe you know that moment, when you are reading book with a catchy title and you kind of feel that others will judge you for that. Somehow you care about what total strangers will think about you. Weird, I know. Some put covers on the book so others dont see what you are reading, some are hiding the book cover putting it quickly to their bags once they are finished so others dont see. The same goes for not telling the full story. Fear of being judged is just stronger then our own authenticity. This behavior is a great mirror of our authenticity and self-love and self-confidence. And this is totally normal. This is how we were wired to survive yet it is kind of not useful these days anymore. So what can we do about it? Every day accept yourself and praise yourself for the journey of your life. Either by writing or thoughts. For the decisions you have taken, books you read, people you hang out with, virtues you follow. If you radically accept who you are, with compassion, with all your limits you will slowly lose this anxiety of feeling the judgment of others, seek approval of others and start being proud of your own authenticity, your own weirdness, your own way.
We spend lot of time in our lifes being disappointed by the actions of others. We are being repeatedly hurt by their "selfish" actions without realizing why are we sad in the first place and maybe that it is us who is a) selfish and b) poor communicator. We all create models of expectations around what others should or shouldn’t do, based on our own "selfish" beliefs, our own little world. Then we go on in our life’s and we are surprised that the expectations we have set for us and others are not being met and that leaves us sad and disappointed. One principle I have created for me is: "never expect for something to automatically happen". Also recently, I have added new principle that says:
Ultimately we are here on this journey to experience everything that life can offer. Good or bad. When thinking about finding our calling, I have changed my view what “our calling” actually is. Looking at it pragmatically you have couple of shots in your lifetime to be true specialist or many calls when you choose to be generalist. By simple math, I choose to be generalist since I have not discovered my calling by the time I was 15. Not that you have to but it gets little but more complicated over time. Our nature is to control the outcome, in this case the outcome is our life. I believe we must oscilate between risking and stabilizing. Without taking new risks, challanges we can live in comfort but never truly figure out what our calling actually is. So why so many people prefers boring comfort over riskier finding of their potential? Fear! Fear that has been defined in our past. So in order to find your calling, I believe you must go to your past and clean the fears you have in order to find your calling. Your calling paradoxically lies in cleaning your past, not in your future. Then you can go and take risks, experiment, be smart, find confluences of contexts you are interested in and create new domains merged by those contexts, unique to your skillset. That is I believe you can find your calling and it can happen at any stage of your life. Good luck!