Struggling with the past

I’ve been self-sabotaging a lot recently.

When I was growing up, instead of giving credit when credit is due, my parents kept belittling me, and telling me “you can’t do this”or”you’re not smart enough”. And I f***ing believed it, and internalized it. I didn’t have a choice, did I? I was just a kid.

Now even I can make my choice, the mocking voice is still there. I delibrately don’t do well, because based on my past experience, no matter how good I do, I’m not doing well, so I’d better just do nothing.

I know their opinions don’t count. I know that I have free will to make all kinds of choices. But the effect the past has on me now is still unbelivable.

I’ve read all about it. Now I have to make changes, step by step. It’s painful, but I have to do it. It’s MY choice this time.

Peace and love.

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Morning routine(simple yet working)

Inspired by “My Morning Routine” from zenhabit. Link at the very end.

So my morning routine now is:

  • wake up
  • get dressed (if I’m still wearing my pajama, it doesn’t quite feel like a new day has started)
  • check tweets (I’m a student, and I follow university, the library, local news)
  • prepare breakfast
  • write down 3 most important things to do today
  • eat breakfast
  • work

Changes:

  • I don’t read news in the morning anymore, because it has been such a distraction. I’d keep thinking about what I’ve read after breakfast while I work. Have to drop it.
  • No shower in the morning. I do it in the evening instead.

My morning routine on Zenhabits

Why am I (still) kicking out TV shows and movies

After the post on why I kicked TV shows and movies out of my life, life for me has been easier to navigate and I have no intention to go back to the old days. However, just like an alcoholic trying really hard to be sober, there are days when I have strong urges to crawl back to my laptop and watch something, like what I used to do. It’s almost like rehabilitation phase but for the drugs. And I’m not doing so well.

See, admitting that I didn’t succeed in fighting every urge at my first try is quite important. Now that I’ve accepted the fact that I failed the first time, it’s time that I do it again, but armed with previous experience.

What I’ve learned from my first try:

  • Don’t expect to watch it “just for 10 minutes and I’ll stop”. You can’t stop. It’d be way easier if you just don’t start.
  • There’s nothing to rationalize for. “hey but it has a good plot! It has good life lessons to learn!” If you want to learn life lessons, learn from real life. Honesly, go out and live your life.
  • You’re not missing out on anything.
  • What if you’re bored? Check this out: 30 things to do to keep from getting bored out of your skull at work.
  • What if your friends talk about it and you’re the only one that’s not watching? Truth be told, I no longer care what other people think anymore. So not a problem.

And now I’ve started with my second(and hopefully the last) try. It’ll take time. I’ll give it time and see how it goes.

 

Why I kicked TV shows and movies out of my life

There has always been this voice in my head that says watching TV shows or movies doesn’t really help: it neither solves any of my problems, nor helps me recover from all the stress and pressure. It dawned on me when I watched an interview by Steve Jobs in the early 90s on the topic of TV shows. He said(not the exact words though):

“People shut their minds when they got home. They don’t want to think anymore. The TV networks are feeding people exactly what they ask for; there is no conspiracy, they just offer what customers want, meet their demand.”

So true! When you stare at a screen, with a mixture of carefully manipulated voices, music and sounds of special effects on the background, you are drawn into the drama right in front of you. That screen becomes your whole world, in which you don’t think or ask questions. It’s an exciting world; you are too focused on the screen that you don’t have one second to stop and ask yourself, what is going on here?

Some might say, well, they could learn something from the movies. e.g. ” watching the poor girl striving for a better life, I feel so lucky and bit ashamed. I’ll do better tomorrow.”  In my opinion, this by no means falls into the definition of “learning”. To see why not, just look at if it answers yes to any of the following questions:

Are you making real any changes to your life? Can you recall the changes after 3 days?Are you gaining more energy afterwards? Better sleep, stronger muscles, better endurance?

If you can’t say yes to the above questions, then you didn’t learn, in my opinion.

TV shows and movies are entertainment, which by nature offers nothing but visual stimulation. They are not designed to help you stop and solve problems. You don’t get the sense of accomplishment out of watching Britain’s Got Talent; but more often than not, when you get back to your own life from all the glamor on screen, your life may seem more dusty and boring than before. Now you might feel both unaccomplished and discouraged. On the contrary, if you spend the time taking a real rest, or keep grinding on your work, you will have done something and gotten better in one way or another.

Of course, when it’s socially required, I will enjoy it, but also keep in mind that I’m neither learning nor resting; I’m spending energy and I’ll have to spend extra time to recover.