Tag Archive: pd zen habits


I Failed ………

What to do when there is a break in a habit we have/are tried/ trying  hard in forming ? . Found this article apt , as I am struggling to re-form an old habit after a  break . Hope this helps me

Excerpt from I Failed By Leo Babauta

It’s a feeling deep within your heart, one you try to ignore, of heaviness. Of dread and discouragement. Of sadness and guilt and collapse.

I feel this heaviness in my chest when I fail.

It can make me feel like crying. I feel lonely and I want to give up. I want to fall on a bed and shut out the world. But that doesn’t work, because the feeling follows me into bed, and actually intensifies until finally I have to get out of bed to try to escape it.

Failure can hurt.

People get this idea about me, that I am successful and disciplined and gurulike. I’m successful at life, but not in the way people imagine. I’m not disciplined. I’m certainly no guru. I fail, all the time, and the heaviness can come in small doses or big waves, unpredictably.

What do I fail at? Let me count the ways:

  • My diet — I eat healthy most of the time, but I overeat when there’s an abundance of yummy food in front of me. I mostly remove that food from my life, but I can’t avoid social situations where the food is right there. When I overeat, I feel fat and bloated and bad about myself.
  • Procrastination — I’m actually much better at beating procrastination than I used to be, but sometimes I put off things I don’t feel like doing, for days. I’ve figured out this is because the task has a lot of barriers to actually starting, like needing certain conditions or information that I don’t immediately have.
  • Mindful parenting — I’ve made a lot of progress in being a more patient, compassionate father, but there are times when I snap and lose my temper. It’s not horrible, just not great. I always feel bad when I get mad at the kids.
  • Expectations — while I’m much better at holding loosely to my expectations, I still have them, and still feel frustrated/disappointed when people or situations don’t meet them.
  • Simplicity — I’m not as minimalist as I once was. I still have far, far less than most people, but I allow myself to buy things more than before. Also, I now have an iPhone — it was a Father’s Day gift from Eva. I resisted getting one for 6 years, and now am one of the masses.
  • Internet — I use the Internet for work, play, reading, learning, etc. I’m on it more than I should be, and sit too much (though I’m pretty active compared to the average person).
  • Learning — I dropped learning languages and programming and other things like this, mostly because I’ve found I just don’t have enough time to seriously learn stuff and still do the other things that are important to me.
  • Yoga — I really need some flexibility, and love yoga because it’s meditation and flexibility and a workout all rolled into one. I have not consistently done yoga despite being challenged by my friend Jesse.

I failed at all these things and more.

What Can Be Done

What can you do when you have the heavy feeling of failure in your heart? It’s not always so easy.

The answer, of course, is action. That’s not always easy because when you have the heavy feeling, you don’t feel like taking action.

You take the action anyway. You take it because you know if you don’t, you feel worse, and eventually your life degrades to the point where you don’t respect yourself anymore. You take the action anyway.

Here’s what I do:

  • I take a breath. It’s not the end of the world to fail. I just need some space, some distance. I need to see the problem in perspective. When I do, I realize that the failure is pretty minor in the grand scheme of my life, in the grand scheme of the world of lives around me.
  • I reframe the failure. Someone once said there isn’t failure, only feedback. That means the failure is just a point of information, a part of the learning process. I like to say, it’s not a failure of me as a person, just a failure of my method. Which means I need to change my method.
  • I change the method. If the way I was doing it didn’t work, I need to find a new way. What can I do differently? In some of the cases above, I added some accountability, asked people for help, or looked for inspiration. In some of the other cases, I haven’t changed the method yet, to be honest.
  • I take the first step. The problem can be overwhelming, because quite frankly we can’t solve any of this stuff overnight, or even in a few days. We can, however, take one step, right now. One tiny step. And that’s all that matters.

Take one step. Any step.

It lightens the heart. It shows you that things aren’t insurmountable or impossible. It starts to dissolve the discouragement and sadness and pain.

The single step you take today is the antidote to the soul-tearing effects of failure. It helps me, every day.

zen habits

excerpt from               http://zenhabits.net/change/

How to Implement Daily Changes

This method is fairly simple, and if you really implement it, nearly foolproof:

  1. One Change at a Time.
  2. Start Small. OK, I’ve said this two bajillion times. No one ever does it, though. Start with 10 minutes or less. Five minutes is better if it’s a hard change. If you fail at that, drop it to 2 minutes.
  3. Do it at the same time each day.
  4. Make a huge commitment to someone.
  5. Be accountable.
  6. Have consequences.
  7. Enjoy the change.

 

zenhabits – 7 Habits of Calmness

                                                        http://zenhabits.net/calm/

The 7 Habits of Calmness

By Leo Babauta

I have come to believe that high stress, constant anxiety over tasks and work and life, social anxiety … is all a part of the modern way of life.

Most people just don’t feel a sense of peace, of calm, of serenity, throughout their day.

I have to admit that I’m the same way some of the time, but I have learned a few things that have helped me create a feeling of calmness much more of the time than ever before.

It’s a series of habits that have developed over the last few years. I’m not perfect at them, but I do practice them, and they are always helpful.

These are habits, not a one-time change in my surroundings or work pattern. Changing your environment is great, but you can’t control the things that happen to you much of the time, and you certainly can’t control how other people act. The only thing you can control is your response — and this response matters. You can respond to the same event with anxiety or anger, or you can respond with peace and calmness.

Let’s figure out how.

The Habits of Calmness

These are the habits to develop that will help you develop calmness (based on my experience):

  1. A calm morning ritual. Many people rush through their mornings, starting the day out in a stressful rush. I wake up a little earlier (5 a.m. these days, though that changes), and start with a little meditation, then a few yoga poses. I then start writing, before I let the noise in. Exercise is another component of my morning routine. You don’t need to do the same things, but find the quiet of the morning and make the most of it.
  2. Learn to watch your response. When something stressful happens, what is your response? Some people jump into action — though if the stressful situation is another person, sometimes action can be harmful. Others get angry, or overwhelmed. Still others start to feel sorry for themselves, and wish things were different. Why can’t other people behave better? Watch this response — it’s an important habit.
  3. Don’t take things personally. Many times the response (that you noticed in Habit 2) is to take things personally. If someone does something we don’t like, often we tend to interpret this as a personal affront. Our kids don’t clean their rooms? They are defying us! Our spouse doesn’t show affection today? He/she must not care as much as he/she should! Someone acts rudely at work? How could they treat us this way?! Some people even think the universe is personally against them. But the truth is, it’s not personal — it’s the other person’s issue that they’re dealing with. They are doing the best they can. You can learn not to interpret events as a personal affront, and instead see it as some non-personal external event (like a leaf falling, a bird flying by) that you can either respond to without a stressful mindset, or not need to respond to at all.
  4. Be grateful. Sure, lots of people talk about gratitude … but how often do we apply it to the events of our day? Things are crashing down at work, or our boss is angry, or our co-workers are rude, or our kids are misbehaving, or someone doesn’t love us as we’d like … do these cause anger/anxiety/unhappiness, or can we be grateful? Drop the complaints, and find a way to be grateful, no matter what. And then smile. This unbending habit can change your life.
  5. Create stress coping habits. Many times, when we are faced with stress, we have unhealthy responses — anger, feeling overwhelmed and withdrawing, eating junk food, drinking alcohol or taking drugs, shopping or otherwise buying stuff, going to time-wasting sites, procrastinating, and so on. Instead, we need healthy ways to cope with stress, which will come inevitably. When you notice stress, watch how you cope with it, and then replace any unhealthy coping habits with healthier ones. Healthy stress coping habits include: drinking tea, exercise, yoga, meditation, massaging your own neck & shoulders, taking a walk, drinking some water, talking with someone you care about.
  6. Single-task. I’ve written numerous times in the past about single-tasking vs. multitasking, but I think people multitask now more than ever. People text while on the train, while walking, while driving. They tweet and post to Facebook and Instagram, they email and read blogs and news, they watch videos while getting things done, they watch TV while eating, they plan their day while doing chores. This is a great way to cause a level of anxiety that runs through everything you do, because you’re always worried you should be doing more, doing something else. What if, instead, you just did one thing, and learned to trust that you shouldn’t be doing anything else? It takes practice: just eat. Just wash your bowl. Just walk. Just talk to someone. Just read one article or book, without switching. Just write. Just do your email, one at a time, until your inbox is empty. You’ll learn that there is peace in just doing one thing, and letting go of everything else.
  7. Reduce noise. Our lives are filled with all kinds of noise — visual clutter, notifications, social media, news, all the things we need to read. And truthfully, none of it is necessary. Reduce all these things and more, and create some space, some quiet, in your life.