Decompressing Time

I’ve been picking up running again, and it’s really been some time since I’ve done any long runs. I’ve been doing runs every now and then, but nothing consistently, and the past two weeks have been me trying my best to get these runs in.

Because of that, my heels are just dead. I’ve got blisters on blisters and they’re just so sore at times, that its hard to move my feet.

But I still run, and it gets me into a very interesting place mentally. I’m running and keeping a good stride, and it feels like every step I take pushes the ground beneath my feet. My breath is full in my chest, and I push on, and see either the sun set, or the sun rising.

And then, some cyclist with no lights rides by really close, with no ringing, and I get this shock of sorts, bringing me down immediately to the earth.

I hope I either find the best time to run without newbie cyclists, or I get a new route, that I can avoid these people with.


I need the run to decompress. There are many things that are stored in my head, and especially through a long day, I find myself not letting them out. I need my head for other things, like how to be nice to people, and how to manage things as a whole. But if I don’t decompress, it just stays there.

There’s probably a deeper scientific reason behind why this is so, and I would like to direct you there one day, but maybe for just today, run longer than you would imagine was possible for you. Maybe you’ve only run 2.4km because it was needed of you to run in school. Go longer than that. Not because you need to hit the distance, but run because you need to decompress too. It’s not about how well you run either, because sometimes when you put so much pressure on that, you run with more stress. Instead, think of moving one foot in front of each other in the simplest way possible.

Soon, you might be 10km in, and you’ll be enjoying your run a lot more than you had imagined. That’s where I found myself at, at least.

Constantly Communicating

I feel it, deep inside. This constant communication that we are linked to in the modern day.

Can you imagine years ago, when the Telephone was first being invented? At that time, the ability to call into your friend’s home must have seemed like a huge invention. And over time, it became a hassle when someone would call you, and you would need to answer, if not the ringing wouldn’t stop.

And then the emails came along, where we could send a letter, without the need to actually post mail. There would be no post man, and everything would be immediate. What an age! You could share your thoughts, and someone could reply you after that, without you having to wait. But then came along the need to reply, and work emails that we try to hide from as much as we can. Or view receipts, that you turn to to see if your friend or colleague had viewed your mail.

Two words: Instant Message. That was the end of it. No longer just an email, where there would be some what of a title, and a template to fill. Instead, just straight up what a phone call would be. Your friends live in your pocket. Good or bad? No one really knows, and the self help side of the bookstores lean more on the No than Yes.

That’s where we are today, with our instant messaging, with our constant communication. I feel it, deep inside me.

It’s not the pings from my friends that I feel. It’s a mix bag of emotions. I feel as if time runs out whenever I take too long to reply someone. I feel as if I did not think hard enough if I pressed enter too quickly. I feel as if the world needs to know and doesn’t really want to know all at once. But I need to share, to make sure they know, right? I need to use my Mechanical Keyboard, to type a message quickly enough, so that they are aware, and that they Do know.

Also because typing messages with a mechanical keyboard is Oh So Satisfying. What could go wrong?

But this constant communication that I feel inside me, makes me feel exposed, dried out. I feel too much, because I keep on going and going.

And I’m typing this post, so that I’m not offloading this to just one person, or a group of friends, but at least to somewhere constructive, where my verbal rants would matter somehow. Somehow placed into a series of paragraphs that would egg on my constant communication.

And I guess now, I’m about ready to stop communicating. I hope you would communicate with me, whoever you are, reading this. Just say hi, just because you can. 😀

My 2nd Anniversary

In case you did not know, I am married. Married for two years at that. It’s something that I am extremely proud about, because I think making a marriage work for two years is a lot of effort. There were many times when I feel like just throwing everything away and just calling it quits. There were fierce fights, and real debates about how things ought to be done. And it feels silly, especially when you look back at it. Worse still, it feels silly if you hear someone telling you, “Oh when you’re getting ready for marriage, remember to be chill about dish washing.” I will honestly say that dish washing has caused a lot more pain than I expected. It’s so strange, because I think the love that we see from our parents, or some old couple walking along the street, it’s just not that easy. It’s a lot of friction, and it can really hurt.

But I’m proud because I think Clarice and I have really had that friction and grown past that in huge ways. We’re really not the same people that we had fell in love with. Some parts have remained, but others have grown. I have grown. I am really a different person. I don’t dislike it in any way, I just know that I am really in a good place now, and it took a lot of effort to get here. I am proud, really proud, of our partnership.

I hope one day I’ll read this post again, and be reminded of how happy and proud I am of my marriage. It is truly a beautiful thing.

What and Where

When thinking about what to do, I’m always stuck with this issue: What should I do, and where should it go?

“What to do” is always an easy one to start with: Paint a picture, write a blog post, cut a video together. But then when you pair it with “Where should this piece go?” then you get into this huge question of what’s the best approach, how do we get as many eyes on this as possible, and the list of it goes on.

But today, like the past few days, I’ll just make these things for myself. On places that I’ll see, and where I’ll appreciate. Hopefully, that helps me to get back to making things easier. Simple. I hope.

The Haunting Past

Every now and then, I sit down and look through the things that I have done before. I don’t usually plan these sessions. I don’t think anyone intentionally goes through a heart wrenching time to reflect on the things that are totally shameful internally. I might be cleaning my room, and I stumble on a box of letters, or a random picture reminding me of a time before, or worse still, chancing on an old picture of a person or myself even.

If your memory is bad, you might just look at it and even wonder how that photo was taken. But if your memory is pretty solid, you get this huge roller-coaster of anxiety, emotion, nostalgia. Regret becomes one of the biggest things you end up with in your hands. Looking back at the person you were, and really regretting being that guy.

I don’t think I was ever proud of who I was. I might be really quite happy with who I am today, but it was shaped from a lot of frustration, and a lot of failed attempts at trying to be someone I’m not. On Reddit, the relevant thread is “r/blunderyears“. I was indeed a huge blunder, and it’s really hard to come to terms with what I did as a teenager navigating social spaces. I used to text girls randomly, trying to just go out on dates, and failing horribly. I had emails and letters from ex-girlfriends, who I cheated on, because I had no idea how to deal with relationships and time apart. There were notes where I had tried to be cool in front of other guys, only to find out that I had not been cool at all.

There were really so many things that I was struggling with in my own head, that I took out on the people around me. They watched me make a mess of so many things, and some of them still stuck around. Some of them became my best men at my wedding. My family also watched me struggle through these things, and they were there, loving me still, and encouraging me to do the right things.

All this really changes the way that I care for people now. It’s silly, if I were shown so much love and grace, for me not to pay it forward. Then I really wouldn’t have learnt much. It would be just a sad older person, doing the same silly things, and not changing. I learnt how to care, how to stick around, even if someone was not doing the best or ideal thing in their lives. I learnt how to listen, the same way friends had listened to me. That’s definitely shaped who I am today, and who I hope to grow to become more and more. I can be better, because I’ve been shown how to be a better person. It’s the regret in my hands, that restrains me from behaving badly again.

So when you stumble across items from the past, remember who you were, and embrace it. Remember that that was you, and not who you are today. But at the same time, remember the people that were around you then, and thank them. They stuck around when they really didn’t need to, when you didn’t deserve it. They helped you out when you really didn’t help yourself. That’s grace, and that’s love. Remember to be better today.

Missing the Thrill

When I started looking at keyboard videos, I was really keen on watching this guy:

I mean Japanese, with really aesthetic videos, and that sweet keyboard sound? What’s not to like? And every time I watched his videos, I imagined that would be me some day, getting to type on a really nice keyboard, and having a really nice video to prove for it.

And I’ve gotten there! Thankfully. I’m happy with all the different switches that I have, and the kinds of keyboards I’ve gotten to play with. And of course, I’ve got almost the same kinds of keyboards Wabi Sabi has. Or at least that one that I was really excited about .

But now that I’m here, and looking back, I miss that feeling. I was waiting for keyboards, I was eager and learning. Now I feel stuffed. I feel over satiated. Full of information, full of knowledge and experience. I miss being hungry and waiting for the keyboards. It was an eagerness, and every day I felt I was one day closer to getting something really special; I was really looking forward to it.

I guess that’s something that I will always remember about that time. The days going to sleep, hearing typing noises, wondering if I ordered the best switches or not. That’s a huge part of the appeal for keyboards, a self perpetuating hype train that will never come back to the train station. Now my keyboard dreams are in another realm of excitement, or maybe it is just level to my other interests. Whatever it is, I’m really glad I had that time to be excited about, to grow through. I wouldn’t have been half the keyboard nerd I am without those videos.

Thank you to Wabi Sabi, for your Vids.

OUTPUT BEFORE INPUT

I’m a sucker for Tom Sachs, and for Morning Routines. So this one is really up my alley in the weirdest way possible. I haven’t been good at restraining myself with social media before I start my work and my thoughts, but this is really a great reminder for me to think more, to produce more, to just do more.

It hits you really differently when you do more. In the Artist Way (12 week programme in creatively resetting), there’s a week where you are not allowed to have any input. No movies, no videos, just your own thoughts and your own writing. In that week, I learnt so much about how much content I take in, and I take in tonnes of content.

My usual day has me starting out with Reddit, and seeing what’s the latest things trending in the Internet world. After which, I’d play a video whilst I brush my teeth or shower, continuing as I change and get to my table. Then I would check through the range of YouTube things, or flip through my Instagram notifications, and then when I get really tired of all of it, then I might look at my notebooks and consider writing. This is all within the first hour of me waking from sleep.

That’s not a good place to be, and its because I feel like a content slob. Just taking in all this content, without really processing, without really working it out. My thoughts are not lean and toned thoughts anymore, they’re heavy and all over the place. My mind is not trained the way it used to be. I actually feel the need to be sharpening up. And this post is me taking some action to getting there. I decided to write this morning, to get myself doing something so that my mind has a workout.

Or at least a stretch, for today.


I’ll be back, tomorrow. I hope. For a longer mental workout, or just to have a better sense of a healthy morning routine.

Internalized Thoughts

There’s different layers that I think we often hide behind as humans. There’s a certain front that I hope people would perceive from interacting with me, there’s a facade of sorts. It’s not bad, but the facade’s usually there because there’s other things that we’re thinking about.

Maybe it’s the food we ate that we are trying to figure out was healthy or not. Maybe it’s the choice of what we are planning to say next to appear intelligent, or to just allow the person we’re conversing with to talk some more. Maybe it’s the fear of death that looms over our heads, worried of a sudden freak accident.

The thoughts I have, as I sit behind my keyboards, are not easy to deal with. They’re raw, they’re frustration. They’re sad, they’re just inconsolable. They are happy and just excited to be alive. But the outside doesn’t want to have the emotions outside. Externally, it’s the thoughts can’t exist and have their space to grow, or to finesse themselves. They stay internal for some time.

Maybe some of the thoughts, and emotions around the thoughts, become well finessed and are expressed in words. The words might appear as a text to a loved one, or a firm command of “Let’s just eat the burger, it’ll be fine.” Some of the thoughts with less shape, but still larger form, pop themselves out as anger, rage, physically manifesting. These would die quickly outside, because they’re not well put together. And the person learns from all this.

I keep some thoughts to myself, because I don’t think they’re fit for the outside. I keep the facade up, as I choose which to express, and try to finesse the thoughts properly. But because of the experiences from the past, not all the thoughts come out, and some stay internal a lot longer than others.

And this in itself, is one of my internalized thoughts, now coming to the daylight (or cyberspace).

Feedback

The last post had a bunch of typos, and sounds so weird, but I only knew that with feedback from my wife. Thanks to her, I now know that it sounds like I wrote it drunk.

And I think that’s something I wish more people told me more often. Do I sound drunk all the time? Is there a way to make sense of myself? Can I improve? Can I become better? I yearn for correction, because I feel like I’m not good enough to discern.

My balance for what I think ought to be can be easily laid out when thinking for someone else. But for myself, I really struggle to think about what I could do better, and how I could have done it better. I think that I don’t give myself excuses, and that leads me to this weird path of super high self expectations. I don’t think it’s healthy, but I don’t have a better option. So I keep pushing and pushing, until some parts of my ego and thoughts break.

But that’s where I look for feedback. I am listening to what people are saying to me, and about me, and I try to fix those things. I know that it’s not perfect, but I think I ought to try from there. If not, myself as my master, will lead to utter destruction of my own ego.

So feedback helps me, and I learn from it.

It’s not like feedback is easy to listen to. I already struggle to hear my own feedback, I end up going into this mode to fix myself as much as possible. Hearing it from others can be really hurtful, if I take it the wrong way. It’s not to give people an excuse to hurl insults at me, and then adjust to hear the good of what they’re saying. But it’s just simple things like “Could be better”, or “Maybe not like this”. In an overly sensitive state, I could really take that line badly.

But again, if its for improvement, I really need to think hard about why it was said, and what I could really learn from it. I don’t want to listen only to myself, or only to the good, or only to the worst things ever. I want to hear balanced feedback, so that I could be a better person. Maybe not today, but hopefully soon. That’s really the heart of what I’m considering.

So if you’re reading this, and I have not heard your feedback properly, please let me know. Tell me. I will be willing to listen, because I hope to improve. Likewise, I hope that you are telling me, so that I can improve. If you give me the space, I will also tell you how to improve as well, through constructive feedback.

One Day

One day, life would be a lot easier the others.

One day, we would be able to have good ideas, and no one would shit on them, because they would have other good ideas too.

One day, we would be able to be ourselves, expressing ourselves, our thoughts and our feelings, and everyone else would be able to accept us wholeheartedly. Not because they agreed with us, but because they were also expressing themselves.

One day, we would live away from our ideals, because there’s might be a lot more joy in helping other people. And that joy from being self sacrificing is an ideal in itself.

But it’s so hard to do that, and some day, maybe one day, we would be.

Perhaps.

One day.