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Anchors Aweigh

Why does it take something really bad to happen for people to want to be really good?The most successful people I know got that way because of some sort of tragedy that they went through or some struggles they had to face. When life got hard they got harder and overcame.

But does life have to get hard before you can start to achieve great things?

Smooth seas do not make skilful sailors. Yeah, true fine. But that doesn’t mean when the water is calm you should remain docked right?

I can only speak for myself but when life is easy for me (and fortunately, it often has been) I find myself getting more and more complacent and comfortable with it and become less inclined to hustle and grind for more.

If my life was a sea it would be the Dead Sea. I’d just be here, floating around, getting very salty about it.

But you can’t have a life without struggle so it’s at this point where my brain will do one of two things:

• Make my current life seem harder by becoming depressed about it and making up issues that don’t really exist, leaving me docked at the harbour. Or,

• Say, “fuck this,” and create a new positive challenge for myself. Undocking and making my own waves.

It’s usually the first option which unfortunately never gets me anywhere. But I think it’s important for me to make a conscious effort to focus on the second choice.

It’s definitely easy to just lie on the boat when conditions are chill. But at the end of the day that’s not going to get us anywhere.

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Simple life

Imagine taking a man from a small village in Africa, blindfolding him, and bringing him to superstore before unveiling him. Then telling him he had $100 to buy whatever food he wanted.

His fucking mind would explode at all the options. There’s like 200 different kinds of crackers. It would take him an eternity to narrow his choices down. There would be foods there he had tried before and knew he enjoyed but there would be so many things around that looked like they would be amazing that it would cause him anxiety knowing he had to decide on only a few of them.

Do I go with what I know? Do I try this kind because the packaging is flashy and fun? That guy told me this was good but do we have the same taste?

To a much, much, much, (like seriously not even close to this), smaller extent this is how I feel about life sometimes. We live in such an unbelievable time and I am fortunate (and often not grateful) enough to be living in a place with so much accessible to me.

There is so much, however, that I find it difficult to commit to one thing and am very indecisive. I spend too much time staring at the endless wall of crackers instead of just grabbing a box and going bag deep in sour cream and chive deliciousness.

I spend so much time looking at all the things I don’t have and all the ways I could be spending my time or how others are spending their lives, that I don’t allow myself to enjoy my life and everything I have.

I enjoy reading, writing, physical activity where I get to chase balls around, and sour cream and chive flavoured crackers and I am grateful that I can have all of these things in my life.

It’s the little things…

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Why are you crying?

I hate going to the gym.
That’s the only part though. Not even the journey to the gym because it’s a really short, pleasant walk.
The idea of beginning the walk to the gym is the part that I…hate?

Do I hate it? I pretty much enjoy every other part of the entire process including, but not limited to, the walk there, the actual lifting of heavy objects, talking with a bunch of other lovely, positive people trying to better themselves, the eventual, gradual results, the feeling of accomplishment, and the guiltless gluttony that follows shortly after. 

The sweet, merciless, savage consumption of the greasiest, fattiest, pizzaiest platters should be enough of a pull to have me flying out of bed every morning like Tinkerbell came glitter all over me.

But for some reason my asshole brain tries to convince me every single time that it’s going to be the worst experience in the world.

My brain is like a tired 4 year old who’s parents are still dragging through Rona to look at patio sets and could not give less of a fuck so he just drops to the ground and starts crying and saying “no, no, no..” over and over again.

There’s no convincing that person to do anything at that point so my only option is to pick him up, suffer through all the tears and eventually he shuts the fuck up and I can go on with my day.

I can’t imagine having children when I have myself to deal with everyday.

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Identity Crisis

How you identify yourself is very important.

I don’t mean based on things like your political or religious views (I’m a conservative or I’m a Christian) or based on your career (I’m a pilot or I’m a dinosaur hunter). I mean in ways that help you portray your characteristics.

For example, I’ve always identified myself as the funny, fat guy. I used to weigh around 210lbs and I’ve always been somewhat of a character/ class clown. So the description definitely fit.

But now I’m down to 175lbs (probably closer to 180lbs with the vacation/post vacation/ Shawn has been a lazy asshole and has eaten mall food for 3 days diet) and subconsciously I still refer to myself as the funny, fat guy all the time and when people tell me I’m not fat I don’t fully believe them.

I’m really not that fat and who knows if I’m funny anymore (I’d like to think so and it’s what I think that counts anyway right?) But, I lived for so long identifying myself as a fat guy that it’s been beaten into my psyche. When you talk about yourself to yourself, yourself listens to yourself and that becomes your self.

But what if I started calling myself a fit, funny guy? Would my habits change? Fat guys eat mall food every day and hate working out. Fit guys take care of themselves and enjoy exercise. Fat to fit; can your mindset be changed by switching out a single letter?

Think of the ways you identify yourself. Be conscious of the ways you describe yourself throughout the day and listen for anything that makes you go “hmm, nah that doesn’t sound like me,” and swap them out for something that you feel you are, or even can be. Anything that you think will have a positive change on your mindset. I am confident, happy, beautiful, tall, tanned, hilarious, tall, hilarious etc.

Beat those positive affirmations into your brain until they’re so set in that whenever somebody (including yourself) suggests otherwise, it actually confuses you because that couldn’t be who you are.

*Disclaimer* This does not work for things like being a pilot or a dinosaur hunter. You must actually be able to fly a plane or have hunted a dinosaur or at least a Komodo Dragon to achieve these titles.

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Keep your friends close…

This is an appreciation post for all the people who I have connected with over the years and who have shaped who I am.

In game of thrones *SPOILER ALERT* Oberyn Martell “The red viper” is my favourite character. He lasted one god damn season…sorry, not even. He lasted 8 god damn episodes before he had his eyes pressed into the back of his head and his brains exploded all over my heart. But he made such an impression in the short time he was featured in the story that he remains my favourite character.

Throughout my life I’ve met all kinds of people that have made me who I am today. Some of them I don’t remember, some of them I’ve known for an hour, some of them I’m still friends with today and some of them I haven’t even met yet.

I love people. I hate humans as a species (we’re absolutely terrible and we need our numbers thinned out by like 3/4) but I like individuals. I love to meet new people and I’m a firm believer in “your vibe attracts your tribe”. I see too many messages on social media about “ignoring the haters”. Stop it. Nobody has time to just sit around and hate you, that’s silly.

So this is a shout out to all the beautiful people (you know who you are) and some of the shitty ones (you probably don’t know who you are) who have made me into the wonderfully fractured individual I am today.

Cheers.

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Your grass is pretty damn green.

I grew up 30 minutes from Niagara Falls (20 if you drive like my friends) and I’ve always taken it for granted. People would travel from around the globe to gaze at this world wonder and the only reason I ever went was to get drunk, wear a button up shirt and lose money I didn’t have playing roulette.

While hiking in Peru we climbed (crawled) up a steep incline on the side of a mountain to check out a lake formed from glacier runoff. It was beautiful to be sure, but I remember admiring it and thinking suddenly, “I have one of these at home, Lake Louise, and I never hike out to that one. It’s just as beautiful as this.”

And just today I was walking around Stanley Park in Vancouver and looking around it reminded me of walking/biking around the bayfront back home in Hamilton, yet it took me travelling to the edge of the world to realize just how great it was.

Travelling is incredible. There’s just a different feeling that you have when you’re adventuring in a new place. But I’m sure there are places/landmarks at home that everyone has neglected to visit for one reason or another. The next time you find yourself saying something to the effect of “ya know, I’ve never actually been…” go. The second you have free time. I bet it’ll be awesome.

Now somebody come with me to Peter’s drive in for fuck sakes. I’ve lived in Calgary for 2 years and haven’t gone.

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“Where my DOGS at?” – dmx

The amount of dogs and butts I swipe through on a daily basis on social media is concerning. There is an infinite number of ways for me to spend my time online; an ungodly amount of information that I could use to better myself or expand my mind.

I could also spend that time creating something myself (this counts I suppose) in order to contribute something to the world instead of just constantly consuming things.

But for some reason I choose (keyword there folks) to scroll through dogs and butts like an epic custom kaleidoscope of distractions from reality.

What a (delightful) waste of time.

Unless the dog (or the butt) belongs to one of my friends, I really shouldn’t let it distract me from more important things right?

I mean it did inspire this blog post so it can’t be all bad, right?

I need to get a dog.

Sometimes life can throw a lot of things at you at once and it can become overwhelming, but if you focus on the dogs and butts that are most important to you it can quiet the noise a little bit.