Grit & Gratitude

May you have infinite abundance

Gratitude is a concept I think about often. If anyone ever comes to me for life or professional advice it’s the very first thing I talk about. Although there’s no specific way to practice gratitude – the ritual isn’t the point, the feeling is – I can say one specific thing that has helped me and continues to help me in my life.

About 7 months ago I was really struggling. I was surrounded by friends that I made out of convenience, but not necessarily mutual admiration, I had a job I liked, but definitely wasn’t going anywhere, and I was working 3 jobs just to end up negative $7 every month. To be fair, I was living in one of the nicest areas of San Diego by myself. But I still felt like I was busting my ass and all I was doing was dwindling the savings I did have. I wouldn’t go so far as to say I was depressed, but I definitely was not excited about my life.

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The Universal Experience

Like I mentioned in my schedule blog, I want Wednesday to be about books and my reactions to them. I read a lot – and I work in publishing so I’m always drowning in words. And while there are some books that I read simply because I have a few hours to kill, more often than not I want to read to learn something, be it facts or a new perspective.

I’m in the process of organizing all my favorite passages onto note cards and all my favorite ones are in a mess right now. So instead of trying to make sense of that pile, I’m going to answer a question from SoulPancake. I’m feeling a little emotional tonight so I think this will be more interesting anyway.

I opened the book at random and the question that came up was: What is one eye opening experience every person should have? (on page 63 if you’re wondering).

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Don’t do what you love

I’m going to put a disclaimer on my blog from the very beginning: I love Ryan Holiday. Perhaps it’s more accurate to say I love the Stoic principles that he describes in his blogs, books, and interviews – but the way he delivers the information is unique and inspiring which is why I think saying I love him is the correct verbiage. I only mention my fondness because a lot of what I post, at least for now will –  in some way – lead back to him.

To that point,  today’s blog is  a reaction to his article about passion as a problem for this generation. In it, as the title might suggest, he talks about how Millennial’s real problem is they search for passion constantly, but passion is detrimental to progress.  The quote truly resonated with me the most was “Think gritty, not giddy.” Four simple words that really summarized who I am as a person.

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All things in time

On my left arm, there is a tattoo that says “all things in time”. The words are displayed in banners around a pocket watch in the style of old fashioned tattoos. It’s my most visible tattoo and also the only tattoo I have that’s done in color. (If you’re curious, at the moment I have 8 tattoos).

The message behind the words is no secret – I believe that all things will come to me when I am destined to have them and not a second earlier. There are a few other layers, but that’s the lesson I’ve always struggled with in my life. I wanted something to remind me that it is true in my moments of doubt and despair.

People who don’t love tattoos always ask, why can’t you just remember that? Why do you need a tattoo of something you already know? Well, today is a perfect example of why.

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Add it to my calendar!

Want to know what’s impossible? Maintaining a blog.

I guess it’s not impossible but it is terrifying. What do I want to say? How do I want to say it? Do I really think more than 2 people will see this?

I really wanted to start with something great – a post worth the internet’s time. Here’s the obvious problem: the internet is huge – and it doesn’t get smaller. Even if I turned out to be the Shakespeare of the Internet, a huge portion of the world wouldn’t see it anyway. I understood that in my more sane moments, but I still wanted to impress people. 3 months later – still nothing uploaded.

I scoured my favorite blogs for inspiration and instructions on how to get my blog going and the answers were all the same.

Step 1: Start.

Step 2: Keep doing it.

So this is my attempt to get over myself and just start. Here’s the schedule I came up with to help me stay on track:

Monday will include in depth thoughts. I’m hoping this will just be a way for me to catalog what I think or feel about topics, people, events. It’s a broad topic, but I think this will be my easiest day.

Wednesday I’ll use to discuss books I’ve read or passages within them that I find interesting. I’m going to cheat a little in the beginning by using Soul Pancake’s book. It’s got “Life’s Big Questions” in it that I want to answer anyway and it will be a way to keep things interesting in the beginning.

Friday I want to talk about the biggest lessons I’ve learned since graduating from university. I did well in school, but for me, the real education and growth began after I graduated. I don’t know if any of the stories will have helpful advice, but it’s worth it to try.

On Sundays I’ve made a practice of doing next to nothing, and I’d like to keep it that way. Instead of an in-depth post, I plan to post a compilation of interesting things I read/heard/watched around the internet that week.

So there you have it. My first blog post and my plan for the future. Come back on Friday if you want. I’ll be here.