onsdag den 25. november 2015

How a mosquito taught me about succes

How a mosquito taught me about succes:
One evening I was chasing mosquitos in my bedroom, and I was rather lousy at getting them with my hand. Even though they were right there on the wall! Every time I tried, it was as if my hand was too late… as if it was hesitating a bit. It made me think:
What am I doing wrong?
My answer was: Actually, I don’t really want to hit them and smear them onto the wall. Maybe that is what’s stopping me from actually getting them? Maybe my brain is telling my arm to hesitate, because part of me doesn’t want to smear the poor thing onto the wall!

So I tried to prove my theory by deciding to really want to hit this next mosquito. And it worked!
I had encountered my own psychic barrier – and overcome it, just by deciding to hit the damn insect.

Since that evening I’ve begun to notice that effect in many other situations, in my personal life and in the world in general. So, for instance; it’s impossible to score without having a goal - but then it’s equally impossible to score/achieve a goal without really wanting to!

If you do not really want to (or fear what you want to do), your brain is going to stop you from carrying out the action. Your muscles are going to hesitate un-noticeably last second. 
I have noticed that about singing high notes in particular: If I’m afraid that the note will not come out, then my throat will tighten up and only strangled sounds are going to escape, and not the beautiful, rich tones I was hoping for. 
As my teacher Abbie Furmansky once said: “There are no high notes in fear”. And the better I got at trusting myself, the better it sounded.

When really wanting to do something, some things are important:

Believe in your own capability in doing so
This may sound trivial, but self-confidence is a must. Even if there’s only a 40% chance that you will achieve/score your goal, and a 60% chance that you’ll miss it, go “all in” on the 40%!
So the cute girl at the party might turn you down if you ask her… but it’s also possible that she won’t. And if you don’t give it a shot, you have made the 60% become a 100% all by yourself for not daring.
In Denmark there’s a saying: “Those, who don’t dare, don’t win”. And that gets me to the next sentence:

Let go of fear
Fear of failure, but also fear of success: I didn’t want to hit the mosquito with my hand, remember? I’ve noticed the same effect in big moments of (my) life: Maybe you don’t really want the new job (or new relationship), because getting it will affect your whole life? Lots of things will change and not knowing the outcome is provoking anxiety.

Let go of that fear, NOW. Go and do what it is, that you want!

søndag den 1. november 2015

Buy art and events - not material stuff!

What would happen if everyone cut down on the money they spend on stuff like new clothes/shoes/sofas/coffee machines etc. by 20% or even 50% - and then went spending the money saved on culture; art, concerts, events?

Economists and environmentalists agree that the world is running short on resourses, so we have to avoid over consuming and start thinking more about recycling, like for instance the new law in France, that says that super markets are not allowed to throw away edible food, but has to donate it to charity or the like. Awesome!

But what will happen to the economy if there’s less trade of material goods?

I think the economy will find a market for trade of immaterial things like knowledge, art and events. Sharing or streaming things like cars and movies instead of owning them is already a trend. This is the future, and it’s already happening.

Do we really need to buy all this stuff? 
Do I need 20 pairs of shoes? No, I don’t think so. 

Some say that shopping fills an empty space in us, but only temporarily so. Philosopher Alain de Botton made a wonderful documentary about this issue. Apparently, it was already answered by Epicurus in ancient Greece!
Video about the wisdom of Epicurus

Why we buy new things is, according to Alain de Botton, because its makes us happy for a while by filling the empty gap, the longing inside us, for a while. 
But: the nice feeling of happiness or attachment to the new pair of shoes/lamp/bicycle wears off ever so quickly – it cannot satisfy the longing for real happiness.

True happiness, it seems, comes from:

*Being with your friends/loved ones/family
*Being free of worries (even just for an hour)
*Being free of physical pain

A perfect reason for spending your money on an evening in the theatre with your girlfriend, isn’t it?