In December of 2015, I’d just finished my 1-year teaching contract in Japan. Hungry for adventure, I set off on a one-month sojourn along the eastern Australian coastline with a Scotswoman, a Frenchman and a Canberra-native in a Britz campervan. (No, this isn’t the start of a joke). There were all the usual road-trip high-jinks – forgetting to latch the kitchen drawers before hitting the highway, being delayed when our window was shattered by a ride-on mower at a rest stop, dodging the occasional kangaroo crossing the road, jamming the back door when we accidentally shut a sweater in it, battling plague-like proportions of flies and never ending sand, having our drying towels pooped on by a wombat. You know – the usual things. #justaustraliathings Continue reading “Would You Believe…Hanson?”
If you missed part one, find it here: Why We Procrastinate (Pt 1)
1. Give Yourself Permission.
When we’re putting things off, often it’s because our conscious and unconscious are in a tug-of-war. Our conscious is curious, creative, spontaneous, adventurous. It’s the part of us that is not just living, but alive. The impulses from our conscious can seem crazy to us at times. Two months ago, I was hiking through the South of France with my friend, Sarah, and had the sudden desire to take off my boots and feel the ground under my feet. My unconscious’ initial response was – are you crazy? You could step on something sharp! Kids go barefoot, not adults. Where is this even coming from?
I consider myself fairly tech-savvy, but when I was setting up my website, I had no idea how to set my blog as the main content of the site. I spent about an hour fiddling around in my settings, growing increasingly frustrated, but determined to do it on my own. Then my friend John, who had a WordPress account of his own, sat down and did what I hadn’t accomplished in an hour in about two minutes. Could I have saved myself some frustration and used my talents in a more productive way? Of course. So what was stopping me from asking for help?
Helping others is the foundation of community.
Anyone who’s familiar with the United States Declaration of Independence is probably familiar with the following passage: All men are created equal & independent, that from that equal creation they derive rights inherent & inalienable, among which are the preservation of life, & liberty, & the pursuit of happiness.
(Let’s just leave the part about being “created equal” alone for the moment – because we all know that’s a load of bollocks, right? We may have been created equal, but America has never been a country that has treated people of different genders, races, ethnicities and faith-backgrounds equally.)
Today, I want to to talk about happiness!
The Pursuit of Happyness
Five years ago, I was working in a beige cubicle with no windows in downtown Chicago. There was nothing wrong with my job on paper – the pay was good, I had fabulous coworkers, a healthy working environment and a relatively stress-free commute. Every morning, I arrived early to enjoy my Venti Starbucks coffee before my coworkers began to trickle in and I thought, well, it’s not happiness, exactly, but I’m content enough…I think? I didn’t technically have anything to complain about. I had job security and health insurance. I didn’t bring my work home. So, I gained a few pounds from being largely sedentary and snacking on the pastries that inevitably filled the break-room at lunch. So, there were lulls of boredom or stress when working up to deadlines. So, it wasn’t my life’s passion…
My cubicle in Chicago (with bonus cupcakes – thanks Dad!)