Saturday, August 30, 2014

I'll Sleep When I'm Dead

This morning I was listening to a favorite podcaster talk about how he thinks people should be able to get by on less sleep, to function on a night of very low sleep, just toughen up & figure out how to handle it.

That's the way I was raised too; it's a hand-in-hand component of the good ol' work ethic. Work hard, play harder, and get by on 6 hours. Half my damn family seems to be comprised of manure pumpers who work 20-hour days for 6-8 weeks every spring & fall, and they declare that "you just get used to it." This includes my own brother, one of the badassest men I know, who in theory shares the exact same genes as me. He'll tell me that sleep is a luxury for the weak, just suck it up and work through it, ya fucking wimp.

But...some of us honestly can't.

Believe me: I've tried and I've tried, and it never works out. It always turns FUGLY. I feel guilty and lame and weak for needing 8 hours, but I NEED THEM. There is no question that without at least an 8 hour average, I will fall apart. Sometimes I need more than 8. And no amount of willpower & determination & ambition to be as tough as my big bro and get by on less has worked for me, ever. Again: I've tried many times, and I've failed every. single. time.

Whatever genes we share, he is tougher, and that's just the way it is. And yes, it sucks and it's not fair and wah wah wah. But I've stopped crying, built a bridge, and gotten over it. It is what it is.

I'm sleep-sensitive. I need 8 hours, they need to be in a dark room, and I need to be wearing ear plugs. And some days I'll need 10 hours & a nap, too. If you think that makes me weak, then so be it. You are entitled to your opinion. (As for me, I'll take this one.)

Those 8+ hours are what allow me to squat & bench & deadlift & pull-up & run up mountains & help my people & love others & tolerate stress & stay healthy, so I WILL get those hours. I will certainly be jealous of my bro & his 6 (or 4), but I can't change it. And that means I should neither apologize for it, nor fight it, nor (most importantly) dwell on it.

In fact, since I've been getting enough sleep, I wake up naturally, without any kind of alarm most days (if my dog lets me), and feeling good. Happy. Looking forward to my day. I didn't used to feel that way, and I'm pretty damn sure my brother doesn't wake up feeling that way, like, ever.

So maybe the need for 8 hours is actually a gift, after all. I definitely wouldn't want to go back to waking up cranky & exhausted. It's much better this way, knowing & acknowledging my limitation and working within it.

Which brings me to you: what limitation or weakness makes you frustrated & angry? How can you turn that viewpoint around and see it as a gift that has actually enhanced your life?

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Stop the Hacking & Just Do Work

Yes, yes, yes, praise Zeus, everything here: Why You Should Stop Hacking Your Life and Invest in The Journey

It’s sexy and easy to frame a narrative of the overnight success story — WhatsApp, Instagram, and American Idol are perfect examples of how the media can twist reality to multiply page views and amplify ratings. But take a peek behind the curtain on any so-called instantaneous triumph and you are certain to find an objective truth that doesn’t fit the neatly packaged narrative. Because every genuine, sustainable success is birthed only from incredible persistence, interminable patience, invisible defeats, rabid dedication and unrelenting passion.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

False Personas

How utterly exhausting it must be to put on a different persona for different situations, to always be "on" instead of your plain ol' self.

Obviously I understand there are times when one should be professional or formal, and not drop f-bombs constantly (although, if this COULD become acceptable in all situations, that'd be fucking bomb dig) - that's not what I'm talking about.

But to be a different person on the job, a different person with friends, a different person on a committee, a different person amongst family - that is what I'm talking about. That's a life that will exhaust you.

It's so much easier to just be real and genuine and always YOU.

It doesn't take any extra effort to be yourself, you you. That shouldn't be at all exhausting; it should be freeing!

And if the real and genuine YOU isn't good enough for all of those situations, then either decide to work on you, or just say a hearty "fuck off!" to those people and who they need you to be.

You need to be you, and you are enough.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014


Today I noticed my skirt was rather snug, and I thought: "Hm, this must be my first wearing since the last wash, and it hasn't gotten stretched out yet."

But there are days (too many to count) where instead I might have thought, "Jesus, I'm such a fat ass."

Same body size, same skirt, same snugness...but vastly different thoughts, because of a vastly different mindset.

I'm no longer obsessed with my size and wishing I were thinner. Yes, unfortunately, I do still wish I were thinner, but I'm also able to recognize that I am perfectly healthy the size that I am, and that's more important than aesthetics, and so I'm not beating myself up about it. (Most of the time. I am SO not perfect, yo.)

If your initial thought is more along the lines of the second one, blaming the "problem" on your hateful body, know that you CAN change your inner dialogue. It takes time and it takes effort, but a serious mindset shift is possible, and oh so worth it!

Start by reacting to that second thought with a correction that resembles the first. What is REALLY happening? Respond to yourself with the that logical reality. You may not believe it, but it's a starting point. Keep doing it, and eventually that logical reality will take over.

And hey, maybe it really IS that you're fatter than the last time you wore it. That could be the logic as well as the emotion. Then the question you need to ask is: does it matter? Because unless you're unhealthily overweight, it Doesn't. Fucking. Matter.

Your body has a happy point where you feel good, you move well, you have energy, and that may or may not mean you have a layer of fat over your strong muscles. It. Doesn't. Fucking. Matter.

Convince your brain of that, and you will be a hell of a lot happier.