Friday, 28 October 2011

A "cross roads" week.

This has been my toughest week since I started my blog. I'm refusing to give in and write a real doom and gloom entry. Am I  just misleading, lying or deluding myself, there has to be an element of these in the mix  I guess it really hinges on how I behave next and what I do next. It's that "when the going gets tough the tough get going" moment. Shame the saying isn't "when the going gets ugly the ugly get going" I'd have a head start :-)))))

Before I go on. Let me say that living in London means my life is a thousand times better than the millions of people who wake up to war and poverty everyday. The daily pluses in my life far exceed those afforded to many millions. I don't take my good fortune for granted I'm merely trying to live a useful and productive life given the luck of geography that was bestowed on me at birth.

Here's a short list of good things in my life. MissG, my two daughters, my mother, my ability to remain positive and see the good through the bad, Jimmy and Jeremy a couple of very good friends. Being surrounded by my little paintings and prints and my other little flea market acquisitions and sardines on toast. (all of the above are in the present, the here and now not daydreams of what might be which is a plus).

And the negative. Debt, very little work and my Olympic skill, apathy.

Well for fecks sake what's wrong with me. A nice list of good things typed without much thought or deliberation and a miserly short list of bad stuff. If you're reading this, chances are you suffer from the misery's so I guess your lists would probably have a similar weight to them. Well all except the sardines on toast!

I'll add to this as the weekend and hopefully me progressies .............

Lots of protein for tea last night and I slept well and feel full of beans this morning. Tried making yogurt again last night but failed so I'll try again today and will make a big effort to eat properly this weekend. Following on from diet is something I read thanks to Jamie

Woke up early and again feel in good spirits. Yogurt version3 worked. So I now have a use for my inherited slow cooker. I'm growing more and more interested in cooking. Particularly simple food, partly because there aren't too many processes and I can adapt and improve. Also seasonal food. I think I mentioned it before. I once met someone who believed nature provided you with fruits and vegetables as you needed them and for as long as you needed them. So I'm trying to buy fruit and veg when it's in season and a by product of this is it's cheaper.

Now to tie the last two paragraphs together. Jane Henderson believes her misery was borne out of various mineral deficiencies and I'm feeling better this weekend because I've topped up on protein and cut back on the carbs. Now this is a gross exaggeration but indulge me for a minute. The human condition states that we ignore the obvious. We ignore the ones we love, we put off the important things, we overspend and we choose the simple route over the more interesting and educating but slightly more difficult route. So is my weekend going better because I've fed a loved one (me) with food I enjoyed preparing although it took a bit of time and I've persevered with my yogurt even tho Tesco's fridges are full of the stuff. I know you'll think this is a vast over simplification but is there any harm in trying it?

The weekends almost over. My youngest daughter has moved in. She's exasperated my ex with her time keeping and the odd joint. So she's been sent to me. I think my ex is teaching both of us a lesson. However it will be nice having her here and fun to be a hands on dad again.

I've done very little this weekend and I'm not feeling as guilty as I normally would lol. Fulham won away which is such a rare occurrence that several Fulham fans on the club website have actually apologised to the team we beat, it seems we're only happy when we're losing. I guess if you're suffering from the blues Fulham are the team to follow:-)

I know a little more about things than I did last week. I feel brighter than I did last week. I hope you've had  good weekend too !

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Missing Words..

I was talking to a customer today and used the word "Passion". It struck me later, that "passion" wasn't a word I'd used for a very very long time. So it set me thinking about other words I hadn't used for a while.

and Passion.

I wonder if I changed some of the words I use, will it affect me in a positive way? and to be honest with spell check loaded, I can add them to the blog knowing I'm not going to embarrass myself.

So for now I shall redouble my efforts. Go that extra mile or more, to bring you wonderful people. Something far more entertaining. Something to the point and far more insightful (is that a word?) Am I over egging the cake haha.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

So lets start again.

  I've been a bit lazy and self indulgent these last two days and it's achieved the following. I'm rested, well read, feel a bit guilty and ready to push on.
  As all things financial have been coming to a head I guess it's added to my stress levels abit so hence the need to sleep. In between my sleeping. I have to say though that a day of snoozing, reading and listening to the radio is an enjoyable day for me and something I'll build in to the future (as long as some more important aspects of life like hard work is in the mix as well)
   I've been reading various blogs and there's a lot of guilt there. I wonder if it's fate. Lining up all that guilt for me to read about. None of it is justified either. We don't set out to make mistakes, we set out (with varying degrees of skill ) to do the best we can. So why the feck do we spend more than a few minutes to analyze it? So fellow loggers let it go and use all that time in a more positive way.
  Starting again isn't quite true. Somethings have stuck others pop up regularly and some I've never managed to adopt successfully. So it's easier to say "lets start again" and it matters not how often I start again, either. When I succeed (and I aim to) will I remember all the times I "failed" or will I remember all the times I "started" again. All the times I wanted to feel good about myself and play an active part in life. I'll leave you to answer that :-)
   Christmas isn't far off. Most years I'd promise myself I wouldn't be broke and fed up next Christmas and I always was lol.
   So no sense in waiting, lets see what can be achieved in eight weeks.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-) 

Is knowing what causes the misery enough?

Over the last week I've been trying to tackle the last few things that I've been putting off for a long while. In the process learning a little bit more about me.

In so many ways I've reached the end of my search as to why I see things in such a negative way so often and lapse into a bit of a recluse.

Now am I capable and strong enough to use all this info to turn things around permanently. I have so many good reasons to but at this moment in time I'm not convinced I have what it takes. I'll get some sleep and start to add up all the qualities and skills I have and see if that's going to be enough.

Although this doesn't read as such it is a positive post.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Thursday, 20 October 2011

A very slow week, so far!

  Before I start, I was going to title this "A slow week" and just as I was about to add the full stop I changed it to "so far". Which I think is a positive and is further proof to me that my underlying mood is buoyant despite the currant financial cloud that hovers above.
  OK back to the slow week. As you may or may not know. I've adopted doing one thing at a time and unless I complete the first task I cannot move on to the second. It's my way to stop me avoiding the important stuff. The stuff I put off. Which is frankly stupid, as it's the stuff that eventually grows and grows and doesn't go away.
  Well it's been an odd experience. Having completed one or two things I've found myself sleeping much better. So you'd think I'd be knocking myself out ploughing through my little pile of crap. That's not been the case though, I'm doing a lot of sitting about and willing myself on but it's slow. What is different however is the lack of guilt which I would normally be feeling around now and the deep routed sense of well being that is coming through. The lack of one feeling and the growing of the other is a spur on, in itself. I would feel even better if I did less sitting around though.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Monday, 17 October 2011

What does the day hold in store for us?

  By "us" I mean me and actually I know for the most part, what's in store. I woke up this morning, like every morning worrying about something. I spent a few minutes pushing those thoughts out of my head. I've had enough of waking up worrying! It achieves nothing except a bad start to a day and something else to overcome. Since finding the story of "The elephant and the fly" I've been making a huge effort to control my senses. Particularly my thoughts and thus use my time to better effect. So back to my day. It's shaped by how I feel, what I plan to do with it and most importantly what I achieve. Fate has very little to do with things. There will always be variables but it's what I make of my day.
Yesterday I said I felt like a complete failure. I typed it while feeling a bit sorry for myself. Well I'm not feeling sorry for myself today although I am a failure. Not totally but as far as work and finance goes a failure. I've made bad decisions, let people down and have been let down. So alot of the crap that's around me is of my making and clearing it up is something I need to do, to restore my faith and belief in myself.
It's just occurred to me that how successful a person is, isn't just about how well they do or what they acquire but also how well they cope when things go tits up. I regularly read several blogs similar to mine and I'm full of admiration for the writers. They are articulate and describe their thoughts and feelings exceptionally well. They are all trying to straighten things out, blame no one and want very little from life.
So time for more action and effort. I hope your day is going well and you've managed to overcome something or feel good about yourself and you count today as a plus.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)   

Sunday, 16 October 2011

One thing at a time.

Yesterday I mentioned just sticking to one thing at a time. Well that's easy to type not so easy to follow I'm brilliant at finding reasons to switch to something else. "It's more important" or "it will only take a minute to do" etc etc. So I've added a little rule. The "one thing" whatever it might be, is the only thing I'm allowed to do. So unless it gets done nothing else does. Bit drastic but I need to keep this thing moving.
This week has been one bit of bad news after another and I have to admit to feeling like a complete failure. However feeling that way ain't going to put things right is it. The only way I'm going to get through it, is deal with things one at a time and one step at a time.
It's not been all doom and gloom though. I've spent the weekend with MissG and she's looked after me and made me feel loved. So there's plenty of good stuff in my life as well.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Friday, 14 October 2011

The Elephant and the Fly, a short story.

Just like dieters hit a plateau and struggle to shift those last few pounds. I'm feeling a bit flat and finding it tough not to give into apathy just as things on the horizon are looking bright. I've been cleaning up the toolbar on my laptop. Removing duplicates and rearranging my folders. During this rather mundane but never less enjoyable time I came across the short story below. It didn't take long for me to recognize myself in the Fly and my longing to be more like the Elephant. So today I'm sticking to one thing at a time. Finishing it, then moving on to the next.
I've had two days with MissG. Lazy starts to each day, a short trip out to somewhere interesting followed by a walk and talk, tea and the biggest cake on the counter. Then home, a read and I'd cook something simple for the pair of us and more talk. Followed by an early night. The phone has been switched to silent for the whole time. So now back to work. I'm feeling guilty about having two days off. Why ? self-worth or the lack of it and money worries probably head the list. The only way out is to deal with it and not hide. So back to one thing at a time and elevate the last two days to happy memories and how the break gave me the chance to reflect and push on. So enough of my navel gazing and on to the story.    

A disciple and his teacher were walking through the forest. The disciple was disturbed by the fact that his mind was in constant unrest.
He asked his teacher: "Why most people's minds are restless, and only a few possess a calm mind? What can one do to still the mind?"
The teacher looked at the disciple, smiled and said:
"I will tell you a story. An elephant was standing and picking leaves from a tree. A small fly came, flying and buzzing near his ear. The elephant waved it away with his long ears. Then the fly came again, and the elephant waved it away once more."
This was repeated several times. Then the elephant asked the fly:
"Why are you so restless and noisy? Why can't you stay for a while in one place?"
The fly answered: "I am attracted to whatever I see, hear or smell. My five senses, and everything that happens around me, pull me constantly in all directions, and I cannot resist them. What is your secret? How can you stay so calm and still?"
The elephant stopped eating and said:
"My five senses do not rule my attention. I am in control of my attention, and I can direct it wherever I want. This helps me to get immersed in whatever I do, and therefore, keep my mind focused and calm. Now that I am eating, I am completely immersed in eating. In this way, I can enjoy my food and chew it better. I control my attention, and not the other way around, and this helps me stay peaceful."
Upon hearing these words, the disciple's eyes opened wide, and a smile appeared on his face. He looked at his teacher and said:
"I understand! My mind will be in constant unrest, if my five senses, and whatever is happening in the world around me are in control of it. On the other hand, if I am in command of my five senses, able to disregard sense impressions, my mind would become calm, and I will be able to disregard its restlessness."
"Yes, that's right," answered the teacher," The mind is restless and goes wherever the attention is. Control your attention, and you control your mind."

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Sunday, 9 October 2011

And moving closer to ......

I'm going to make a second cup of coffee before I start ..... that's better.

Ok so this morning I'm having a lazy start to my day and I'm going to build one of these into my week in future. Breakfast, a bit of a read, the radio on in the background. Total slobbery completley without guilt.

I've also been catching up on several blogs as well. Shame is they're all a bit low and flat. None of my fellow cyber misierites seem to be doing well at the moment. I mentioned distancing myself from negative things a few days ago and that included a few people who pull me down. Thing is, it doesn't matter how low and distraught my Cyber Miserys are I want them around. They really are the gang with huge potential. So I'm going to get closer to them. They can become part of my lazy morning.

Smiles and positive thoughts. Even if I'm not feeling it, I can smile and can have positive thoughts. The positive thoughts must be in the here and now. Not in the future, which was somewhere I used to use to hide in, when the here and now wasn't going well.

So enough to be getting on with for the moment. MissG is coming over for a few days midweek and I'll take a few days off so we can have a bit of alone time and do a little sight seeing before the weather closes in and London reverts back to its grey chilly winter wardrobe.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Friday, 7 October 2011

Distance myself from ...........

.... untidiness. Waking up to last nights washing up isn't a great start to a day. It's not the end of the world but it is the tip of my particular iceberg. My van, paperwork, thinking. All these things chip away at my spirits and stop me from tackling certain things. So I need to be more methodical in future which in turn should put the distance between me and it.

.... late nights. I get home with the best of intentions but veg out in front of the TV only to wake up at 2am on the sofa then drag myself to bed. So lets see what a series of early nights leads to.

There are others to go on the list but timing is key for me. In the past I've taken on too much all at once so I'm going to take things in small bit size chunks this time round.

On the whole this has been a good week, although today I had no enthusiasm for anything. To my credit I plodded on and things turned out ok in the end and I'm feeling a bit more inspired now. So will put it to good use before my early night lol.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

That's got me thinking.

Yesterday I mentioned briefly that being away from the things that made me sad have helped with my recovery. I know that's stating the obvious but it's got me thinking.

So while I was wandering the isles of the local Asda filling my eco lifetime shopping bag and pondering on this my phone rang. It was my ex complaining that some paint I had brought was "rubbish", I'll explain. My daughter wants to paint a shelving unit in her room white. Normally you'd have to prime/undercoat and then finish off with your topcoat of choice. Thinking I'd help matters along I found a one coat paint just right for the job. Right you're up to speed now, lets move on. So my ex went on to explain my daughter had started painting the aforementioned unit and the "paint" was just a clear varnish and not white as expected. I asked if they'd stirred the paint beforehand and was told of course they had. Ok I'll sort it out I said, end of call. Now I'm abit anxious. I'll need to find some time go and collect the "rubbish" paint suffering the odd sarky comment take it back where I brought it from etc etc. So after paying for my shopping and heading home with a little less spring in my step. I get a text. "Twit didn't stir it."

Which serves as the most perfect example of the last years of my marriage. My ex shedding any stress of her own making or anybody else's on me to sort out. Now as I never stopped her doing it. I was as guilty in a way as she was but I suffered for it more than she did.

Like an alcoholic needs to keep away from booze to aid their recovery. Have I distanced myself enough from the things that ails me? (not far enough from my ex obviously) Do I know what ails me?

I read several blogs and there are common thoughts running through all of them, regardless of the depth of the individuals misery. The lack of motivation, poor diet and sleep etc etc.

Now, this really is me just thinking out loud but the last few days have gone well. Partly because I gave myself plenty of time to complete things and let people know what my plans were. So I want to continue with this and while I do, think about what I maybe need to distance myself from in the mean time.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness :-)

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

It's not fixed yet but !

Well I hope you're smiling. I am. Even though some things didn't go well today and one thing went completely tits up. I've finished the day smiling but pretty tired. I'm starting to change the way I go about my work so things going backwards short term, is to be expected. I phoned tomorrows customer to let her know what time I'm planning to arrive. Simple really and it's something I'm going to do in the future.

Since last weekends little catalogue of mishaps and the realization that as much as it frustrates me I overcame the problems (and always do) it's given me another gently push in to the main stream. I have to tweak things a little. Firstly where would I be without my friends and acquaintances. I need to be a good friend to them as well and I mustn't let things get me down. I know it will be me that sorts it, so ditch the mopping around and just move on with it.

Now I've either changed or am changing the things that flatten me or moved away from what brings me down (my ex and her own unhappiness) things are improving. Has it simply been a case of distancing myself from trouble that enables recovery. I guess I needed to know what it was and getting honest with myself first that started the journey. Funny thing is I'm also finding out other things (like finding a tenner in a pair of jeans you haven't worn for a while) that hadn't even been an issue before. Issue maybe too strong a word but I'm coming across things every now and again that surprises me.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happness :-)

Saturday, 1 October 2011


I've titled today's page as "detail" because I can't go into detail as it would be inappropriate. Anyway I'm having a right mare with my van. There are things wrong with it and being a Merc it's expensive to fix and the road tax has expired. Basically I'm pretty screwed. So I'm having a chat on the phone with my friend Chris and telling him my transport problems. When he says I might know someone and he did. Well into my life comes this little Greek fella who happens to be a Mercedes mechanic.

All I have to do is get from Kent to North London by 11o/c this morning and my new, yet to meet friend will solve my problems for an amount without too many zero's on the end. No problem. That is until I get onto the M25 and the engine starts to get a bit hot. So I pull over and lift the lid, stream pouring out from the side of the little filler bottle. I let it cool down and top it up, also making sure I fill anything in the van that will hold water. Now it's five to eleven I've stopped half a dozen times I'm out of water and sweating like an X Factor hopeful. Well I just make it in time and my new bestest mate moans a bit about working on such a lovely Saturday. A few hours later I have a fairly fit Van with a long list of things I need to do and I'm sailing home to Kent. 5 miles from MissG I get a puncture, so parked up on the hard shoulder with lorries whizzing past my bum at 60mph I change the wheel and am thinking when will all this grief end.

Back in the van and creeping along those last few miles (cos the engines cooking again) a light goes on. This time not on the dashboard but in my head. Whatever crap comes my way I get through it. I solve it. I survive! So now I'm looking at things from a different place. I'm not a failure. I'm a solver, someone not ready to give in. I just need to alter my thinking a tad. Take on the new info and start seeing life from a birds eye view and not a bugs!

The answers to my many problems are around me. Friends, family and my own abilities. Today I learned a lot.

Onwards and upwards in the pursuit of happyness.