Monday, September 2, 2013

Nice guys finish last, cliche or words of wisdom?

*** Disclaimer: This post kind of starts in one direction and then heads down a couple completely different paths and then goes all over the place, I was trying to figure out if I could put it together in a way that makes sense, but I think it speaks very well to the way my crazy brain thinks so welcome to my world! You have been warned :P

I went to bed last night looking forward to getting up early and walking through Riley park down here to the Roasterie to sit and enjoy my morning coffee while doing some reading and writing. It's one of my favorite ways to start the day. And now that I'm here, sitting by the window surrounded by the smell of coffee, it feels great! This is my favorite time of day to be out and about. I am most productive at this time in the morning. The people that are out always seem to be just as productive and happy to be clocking in at the same time as the sun.

However, when I first opened my eyes this morning all I could think about was-I do not feel like getting up, i'll just lay here for a bit longer-And with that I hit snooze and rolled over. Now I have no clue how, but when you roll over in bed after waking up, no matter what position you end up in it is the most comfortable position you have ever been in. You could twist your back and throw your legs half off the bed and shove your face against the wall and somehow it feels magnificent! Then a few minutes later the snooze alarm goes off and you play the game all over again until finally you force yourself to get up and start your day.

Now if I knew I was getting up to do something that I didn't like I could understand why it would be so tough to get out of bed, but why is it that it's still tough to get up when you are doing something you love? This anomaly isn't just restricted to getting out of bed either. I find the same thing happens when I need to get ready to go to the gym or to a yoga class or any kind of activity that I really enjoy. Once I am there I always enjoy it and never have any regrets, but there are many times when it takes all the effort in the world to convince yourself to get ready and go. Why is that? Does this happen to anyone else? Why is being lazy so appealing to us as humans? I am sure everyone knows how good it feels when you accomplish something that you are excited to get done, so why is it so hard at times to actually put in the effort to get it done?

It seems as though being lazy is actually addictive I recently read an article by Jamie Frater ( that talks about the top 10 modern human addictions and being lazy is listed there, unfortunately he doesn't really go in to the "why", but it is a good article none-the-less.

For myself it seems to be tied partially at least to a lack of motivation, I could come here and write this blog and enjoy my time so that the three of you who read it can have something to do while you enjoy your own morning coffee. But what does that do for my life as a whole? How does it move me forward and make me grow? Where is it going to get me in the long run?

Now it may seem a bit over dramatic to take it to the level to which I am going to take this, but I am a big picture type of person and so that's where I am going to go and you can't get any bigger picture then asking the question; What is the purpose of life? Why do we do anything? If I can be just as happy and comfortable laying in bed hitting snooze then why do we do anything except sleep? Why ever get out of bed at all?

We all want success that's why. We want to feel successful and accomplished in life, and how do we do that? With a good paying job? A big house? Fancy vehicles? Lot's of stuff? What happens when you get all of that? When you accomplish all of the goals that you are "supposed" to have in life? How do you stay motivated at that point? What's the next dream? I feel as though most people would say family, love, relationships and that makes a lot of sense to me. But what if you don't know how to get those things? There is a road map that you can generally follow to achieve all of the first things I mentioned. Work hard, try hard, learn new skills, apply yourself, stay late at work, push push push, try try try. And if you put in enough effort you will eventually get there. It's quite simply really. But when it comes to love and relationships the recommended approach is the exact opposite. Just let it happen and it will happen, don't try so hard, It will happen when you stop caring so much about it...

This is why life is so complicated. In the words of John Lennon, All you need is Love. Well why is it that there is no way to work hard at finding love? Working hard at finding love is seen as clingy or needy and it pushes people away. The proof of this can be seen by doing a quick google seach on relationships. You will find countless pages of "Dating Rules" Don't text her for three days or you will appear clingy, sometimes don't respond to her texts so that it leaves her wondering, don't be too available. Imagine if we used these rules when applying for a new job? Don't respond to the company right away, let them wonder if you are interested. Don't be to available, if they ask you to start Monday maybe tell them your kinda busy Monday but maybe Wednesday would work?

Why do we play these games with each other in relationships but not in any other aspects of our lives? Why are we so afraid to just tell it like it is? How do you learn to be better at dating when everything else in your life seems to follow a completely different set of rules? How many times have we screwed up potential relationships because of not knowing what rule applies where? I think this actually speaks very well to the answer to the question "Why do nice guys finish last?"

Here are a few things you may not know about nice guys:

  • Don't mistake respect for shyness or lack of confidenceNext time you go on a date with a guy and he doesn't try to make a move on you, don't assume that it is because he is not confident in himself or that he has no passion. Maybe it's because he is being respectful of you and he is waiting for you to give a clear sign of interest before he shows you his true feelings. 
  • If you aren't interested, tell us
    It may seem like you are sparing our feelings by not being upfront with us, but let me tell you it hurts a lot less to rip the band-aid off then to spend time wondering. And when I say tell us, do it in english, not in code. You may think that you're being obvious when you say things like "I don't want to be in a relationship right now" or "I am just looking for friends right now" but to us that means, "She isn't sure if she wants to date me so I should work hard to show her why she should" or "Ok, I will be good friends with her and then hopefully she will fall in love with me". Be blunt, you will be surprised how good we are at taking the news.
  • We probably aren't as available as we appear
    If we are interested in you, we will make time to hang out with you, that doesn't mean we have nothing going on in our lives. That doesn't mean that we are willing to drop everything in order to be with you, that doesn't mean that we are being clingy or needy or that we will drop everything just to spend time with you, what it means is that in order to get the chance to know you, we are willing to make our schedules work to find out if you are someone we would like to spend more time with.

So if I can offer any advice to single women out there it is to give nice guys a chance, you may be surprised at how confident we can be if you let us.


Saturday, July 20, 2013

This post is important, you better read it RIGHT AWAY!

Well, my goal of writing a blog post a week clearly was not met! Let's try this again and see how I do this time :)

I have an addiction. There, I said it. I took the first step and admitted it. I am addicted to my phone! Checking Facebook, Checking Email, Snapchat, Instagram and the list goes on! and yet I keep adding new things to my phone to check! 

Part of being a web developer does require me to keep up with... Sorry, I just noticed that there is a little red 1 in a circle on the Facebook icon on my phone, oh and Justin just sent me a snapchat... Ok, now that I know that Justin is playing Earthbound, and that someone who I don't know commented on a friends post I can get back to blogging! Where was I? Oh right, web developer. Ok, so I could use the excuse that I need to be on my phone for research, and that would be a valid excuse, well... it would be if I was actually doing research. The truth is that most of the time I spend on my phone is checking to make sure I didn't miss any messages or opportunities to write clever comments on peoples posts.

It's kind of like eating junk food. "I'll just have a couple chips", or "I will buy a chocolate bar and only have a single square". Right! It starts with a single chip and the next thing you know it's 3 in the morning and your at 7/11 getting a day old hot dog and 4 Taquitoes (You actually only wanted 1 Taquito, but if you buy 3 then you get one free so you better just eat all 4 to save money). 

Continuous growth is something that I seek to achieve in my life. This includes obtaining new knowledge, taking care of my mind and body and always striving to be the best person that I can be, and yet it's so easy to do things that do not help contribute to this goal. How many times have you said to yourself "Ok, tomorrow I will eat healthy" or "This is the last time I am going to check Facebook today". The problem with this is that by acknowledging your attempt to do better you actually force yourself to think about what you are NOT supposed to do. Just like trying not to think about penguins will inevitably ensure that penguins will be on your mind. 

So... I have to admit that I just took a break to check my phone, but those junk emails had to be deleted otherwise I would just sit here looking at the "5 new emails" message wondering if I am going to miss out on something important. Lucky I did too! There is a Prince in Nigeria who desperately needs my credit card information to save his family!

I am guessing that at least some of you suffer from the same addictions that I do, the fact that you are reading this right now may actually be a sign of this addiction! So I would like to offer a few suggestions on how you can work on managing these addictions, how you can be more productive and how to ensure you eat healthy... The key here however, is that I would "like" to offer you these suggestions, unfortunately if I had good suggestions I would not likely be writing this post. So let's fill the comments section of this blog with ways that we can all work on being more productive, healthier and how to continuously strive to be our best.


Saturday, May 11, 2013

A Skeptics Guide to Yoga

I have several friends who remain skeptical of the benefits of Yoga. “Yoga doesn’t burn calories like running does and won’t build muscle like going to the gym, so why would you do Yoga as a workout?” is the argument that they use. These statements are both true, Yoga may not burn as many calories as a high cardio workout or bulk you up like lifting weights. You are not likely to win a body building competition just by practicing Yoga, but it is still a challenging workout.

The thing that a lot of people don’t realize is that true Yoga is not as much about fitness as it is about self-improvement. I feel like the general impression of Yoga is that it’s an over-commercialized fitness fad that people do to get out of going to the gym but still feel like they have worked out. It seems to be lumped in with things like Pilates or P-90X that are specifically marketed as weight-loss, muscle building workout routines; when in fact in my opinion Yoga would be better compared with something like Tai Chi.

The major benefits of Yoga come not directly from practicing the poses, but from adopting all of what Yoga has to offer. Here are a few of the benefits that I have personally experienced:

Yoga is great for increasing your flexibility, here are a few of the health benefits that are associated with increasing your flexibility
  • Improved Circulation, increased blood flow to your muscles
  • Improved range of motion providing better balance
  • Relieves stress, relaxes tense muscles, calms the body 
  • Injury prevention, conditioning the muscles, tendons and joints, faster recover
  • Improved posture
  • Aids in digestion and improves metabolism
  • Enables your body to perform more with less energy

Yoga is a form of meditation, meditation is great at relieving stress. The amount of actual meditation that you do throughout your practice will depend on your teachers and on the studio and style of Yoga that you practice. Whether your practice includes sitting meditation or not, you are—perhaps unknowingly—meditating every time you get on your mat. Meditation is quiet focus, something that is required for balance. The more you focus and quiet your mind, the better you will be able to hold the pose. Also, for anyone who has experienced Savasana ( you know how meditative Yoga can be. Any time you think maybe I will skip my Yoga class today, all you need to do is remember how good Savasana will feel and it’s easy to convince yourself to attend!

It seems a little funny to express the benefits of breathing, however so many people take it for granted. We are all born knowing how to breath, we do it subconsciously our entire lives, but few people actually pay attention to it. Breathing fills our blood with oxygen and removes CO2 from our bodies. By focusing on our breathing we can allow our bodies to become aware of the effects the breath has on the body, and experience the sensation of living. Conscious breathing can help us reduce stress and improve our body awareness.

Weight Loss
As I mentioned above, Yoga is not a high calorie burning cardio workout, so how can it help with weight loss? Yoga is extremely difficult to do if you have a bad diet. Anyone who has ever had pizza and then went to a Yoga class will likely agree with me here! In fact the healthier you eat, the easier and more enjoyable Yoga becomes and so in a strange paradoxical way Yoga convinces your body to eat better in order to more fully enjoy Yoga. It is amazing how quickly this happens, Yoga is great at making you aware of your body and when you have eaten something that your body doesn’t like you will know right away. Your body will feel lethargic, you will lose flexibility, twists will feel uncomfortable in your stomach, the list goes on. 

The benefits listed above also improve your overall health, which helps your body process food better, which helps your metabolism become more efficient which all help in weight loss. There is some debate around whether Yoga actually slows your metabolism down. This is sometimes used as an excuse to not practice Yoga for weight loss; however even if it does slow your metabolism down, your new diet does not require a fast acting modern metabolism that is forced to over work due to the processed food we commonly eat. A fast metabolism is not necessarily a good thing anyways, the faster your metabolism, the faster your cells breakdown and need to be replenished which is a huge factor in how quickly you age.

These are just some of the major benefits that I have personally experienced through a regular Yoga practice. All of these things combined have helped me feel better, eat better, live better. Yoga may not directly condition you to climb a mountain, or to squat twice your weight, but speaking as someone who has done both of these things, the first time I held a handstand for over a minute felt just as good and has only increased my desire to climb more mountains and lift more weights!

I would love to hear your own experiences, please share in the comments!


Saturday, May 4, 2013

My Inaugural Blog Post

Well, here it is! My inaugural blog post. I have been wanting to start a blog for a long time now, but have been unsure of what my blog should be about. I have decided that I can't use that as an excuse anymore! It is time to just start a blog and see where it goes.

I have a lot of different interests and so I can see this blog being kind of a mismatch of posts so if you find one topic isn't something that interests you then just wait for the next post because I am sure it will be completely different!

If I had to categorize what my blog will be about I would say that it will have a large focus on general well being and health with a side of technology and science. Here is a list of some of the major topics that I hope to cover, so if you have an interest in any of these please feel free to contact me or follow my blog as it evolves! Depending on how things go and how many posts of each topic I end up doing there is a possibility that I will split things up in to multiple blogs, one for each topic. Your feedback will help me make decisions like that so please comment away! I would love to hear your thoughts and suggestions!

  • Nutrition
    • Posts in this category will focus on healthy eating. It is something that I am always working on and so I think writing about it may help in my own struggles and just maybe it will help you too!
  • Mental Health 
    • I want to explore the world of happiness, what does it mean to be happy, what is the difference between being happy and being satisfied. 
  • Physical Health 
    • A diary of my adventures in Yoga, Hiking, Wall Climbing and any other physical activities that I decide to try out. 
  • Technology
    • An exploration of current and future technology, primarily (but not limited to) the world of software development.
  • Science
    • What's going on in the world of science? I enjoy learning about this insanely amazing universe we live in and this will be a place for me to share and discuss what's happening in it!

These are just some of the things that I would like to talk about. It is very likely that many of the posts will span more than one of these topics, but hopefully I will be able to find some way to keep things organized. Or if not, then at least I will have fun doing it!

I look forward to your comments and to the many amazing conversations I am sure we will have!

Peace - May the 4th be with you! ;)