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2018 – Resolutions, Substances and Business Acumen.

2018 - Resolutions, Drugs and Business Acumen.

Hello Guys,

If you’d told me it would take another month before I wrote the next article, I would have laughed in your face. Now I realise I do need to be more consistent.  Maybe even get into the trend of New Year’s resolutions and all that. Maybe even tattoo the word ‘Consistency’ on my forehead as a constant reminder… to each their own I guess.

First things first, I would like to wish you all a very happy new year 2018. Yeah yeah, I know I’m almost a fortnight late but I finally did it, didn’t I? :D. Like every other year, 2018 is a fresh start. A fresh chapter in a book that can only be written by us. But that does not seem to be the case. For a lot of people, not taking control when we need to means we still leave it to other people to decide our fates for us. I will speak for myself. Due to uncertainty about the future, a slight fear of change and failure and sometimes laziness, I have sometimes prevented myself from achieving my personal business goals as well as committing to other ideas I had already started in the last year.

(Personally, I think we’re born to instinctively survive and pass on genes. Finding purpose to our existence is only secondary. But that’s a discussion for another time. But I still think the photo above is cool, no? :D).

You see, routine and familiarity breeds comfort. And comfort in return brings about an unwillingness to try new things. That unwillingness in return breeds a fear of change. What happens after that is that we are stuck in this cycle of repetition, and subconsciously preventing ourselves from self-development. Besides friends, family, and future financial stability, another thing I really value is peace of mind. My need for peace of mind is the reason why I am able to work quite comfortably in a kitchen – an environment which in poetic terms should be considered a warzone. It is also the reason why I have fairly good prioritizing skills. And also a good understanding into what elements of ‘small stuff’ I should concern myself with.

I realised that when you value peace of mind – especially in a work environment like mine -, satisfaction becomes more important. Not perfection. In my books, ‘Perfection’ is universal and is only an ideal. While Satisfaction is subjective and actually achievable.  And right now, what gives me the greatest peace of mind is that I know what the obstacle to achieving my goals is (Me), and I am not in denial about it. I really do believe acknowledgement and acceptance of a shortcoming is the first step to dealing with it. In a way, call me my own personal therapist and reality checker. Like the Ed Nygma’s (The Riddler’s) darker personality from the Gotham TV series. :D.

Resolutions.

Resolutions are seriously overrated… If you don’t act on them that is. We all know the recurrent new year and social media trend of New year’s resolutions. But for a lot of people, it’s just that – a trend. A lot of people talk about New year’s resolutions simply because everyone else around them is doing the  same thing. But how many people actually decide to take action? A far smaller percentage. If I were to quantify it, I’d say less than 10%. That is just a personal guess. I’ll include myself among those hopefuls that make mental new year’s resolutions and do little to implement them, then end up making excuses as to why they haven’t met those resolutions further down the year.

Anyone that is serious about achieving knows that writing down your objectives is a very important step to achieving them. Okay, this varies from person to person. It may be just simple day-to-day tasks, it may be monthly tasks, or long-term objectives. But I can personally confirm that physically creating To-Do-Lists and ticking off completed tasks one after the other really motivates you to get your ass up and get things done. It promotes discipline. I do this almost everyday at work, and it works. But it’s high time I applied this to my business objectives and day-to-day life. Time to practise what I preach I guess.

I’m not here to debunk resolutions or anything. Instead, I’m writing this to do the exact opposite. And I really do hope this article reflects just that.  Don’t let other people’s ridiculous notions of attaining
success sway you from what your goals are – with health, food, drink, relationships, career, etc.  Determine what it is YOU want, and seek to achieve it on the basis of self-development/satisfaction – not to satisfy someone else.  People who generally “go with the crowd” are rarely attractive to sensible people. They are, after all, predictable and something ‘crowd-swingers’ are not. This is 2018 – a new chapter. Let’s all do our best to make the make the most of it.

Drugs & Alcohol.

I’m still trying to figure out why I want this sub-heading to be a part of this article. Probably because I couldn’t think of anything else to write about with whatever time I had available to me. I feel like this website is also becoming my public diary and playground, and not just a blog intended to create value for its readers. But hey, if I can kill two birds with one stone, then why not?:D.

Many of us have various amazing and funny stories, memories and experiences that can be traced back to the consumption of alcohol. From novice to intermediate to expert. And despite alcohol being the most destructive chemically consumed product in existence, it  is still the most socially acceptable ‘drug’ simply because it is legal. Which brings me to my position on ‘drugs’.

When I mention ‘drugs’, I am strictly talking about substances that can either enhance or decrease normal bodily functions in any way, shape or form – but are considered illegal. As far as I am concerned, ‘medication’ is legal and ‘Drugs’ are illegal. But to me, their basic chemical compositions are meant to achieve a similar outcome. ( I can only hope I don’t get arrested for this down the line. Because I’m starting to sound like a guru on this topic).

For most of my life, I grew up believing that drugs were a bad thing. But after trying most (under controlled environments), I realised they were actually amazing. I prefer to use the phrase illegal substances in this case, as we have all been hard-wired over 80 years to associate the word ‘Drug’ with EEEvil. Just as many of us Christians associate the word ‘Satan’ with devil and not the proper term ‘opponent’ or ‘adversary’. As such, I remained paranoid of trying anything that wasn’t alcoholic – just because that is what I had been taught. Anything that isn’t alcoholic is generally considered taboo. Believe me, I have experiences with alcohol I wouldn’t want to repeat. But when you cultivate self-control , you realise that the problem is not the substance. The real problem is Abuse of the substance and a lack of  both discipline and self-control.

Do not get me wrong,  I am speaking based on my circumstances. What I mean by that is I’ve always grown around loving people for most of my life. I count myself extremely lucky. This is also the reason why I may be sounding like an advocate for drugs. I’m not. I’m an advocate for responsibility and safety in consuming them. I know there are people out there that have grown up witnessing death, pain, abuse, trauma and violence on a daily basis as a direct result of these substances. People who have grown up to develop a deep hatred for these ‘drugs’. People who have decided to abstain fully from the consumption of alcohol and drugs firsthand. Because they know very well how much pain and distress it can bring if it is abused. And for very good reason! I just want to state here that I mean no disrespect to these people whatsoever and I very very very much respect them for their decision to abstain. It takes massive determination and balls. And no one in their right mind, after having experienced such shit regularly, would want the same to happen to their loved ones. 

So what now???

So I have developed a mindset where I try most things first and then make a decision for myself. Do not allow popular opinion to decide what you like and what you don’t like. If there is a prevailing popular opinion, challenge it. Go out and seek the answers for yourself. Mind you: it is scary getting out of your comfort zone and challenging everything you once believed in. Why? Because you will probably FAIL. But unless you do that, unless you’re willing to accept the possibility of failure and dealing with it, you will never find the answers to the questions you keep asking yourself. You will never be able to develop yourself. Dealing with setbacks and getting out of your comfort zone are very essential in making you a better individual. Apply that mindset to every walk of life. Be it love, relationships, business or every day-to-day activities.

I will say this again. (Like I have said in previous articles). I am not rich, I am not wise (I know that because I still make very dodgy financial decisions) and I am not where I want to be in life just yet. But what I know is that right now, I am comfortable and happy. Both mentally and emotionally – and in an environment where mental health issues and depression are very common. I have few friends but they are close friends; real friends – people that have been there in my times of need. I have taken up a few hobbies I hope will help me retire earlier than I plan to. And I am sustaining very healthy relationships between women and professionals alike. So yes, I do not consider myself miserable. Some of the people I’ve met, some of the things I now have – I would not be able to get them unless I went out of my comfort zone and challenged the status quo. But despite all that, I still want more. Heh, what can I say? I want it all. I’m a greedy bastard :D.

Be good, and happy New Year 2018. I’ll be back.

Sincerely,

Derrick.

 

Derrick

10 Comments

  1. Happy New Year 2018.
    I hope that you will get success in your career.
    I agree with your opinion of ” Leave the comfort zone and take a new challenge.”
    I will keep it in mind.
    Thank you.

  2. Derrick, it seems that I have followed the same trail as you have. Growing up during the initial ‘hippy’ years I have tried many ‘enhancing’ products including alcohol. I tried, enjoyed with close friend and in a comfortable arena.

    Then I moved on to try other things. I have travelled fairly extensively (from birth for that matter).

    I have often worked outside the box. My dad was an equal opportunist. In fact given the choice between hiring a female engineer vs a male one, if the abilities were the same the girl was chosen. In those years that was an amazing feat.

    Moving to Australia, the situation hadn’t progressed like this. And I became a Civil Engineer (very civil in fact). So generally I worked with men. Even though many people told me that was a man’s job, I acted as their equal and that is how they treated me. (Basically engineers are better people that some!)

    Now being one woman in a 25 engineers team, I attended seminars and the like where the presenters got a shock when I turned up. Many of these include male related topics. It was funny how embarrassed the guys got. But I did learn all about the prostate! One of my colleagues noted that he know I always thought outside the box and worked outside my comfort zone (or my zone was really large) so he never told the presenter that a female would be there.

    So set your goals, don’t angst if you don’t get there all the time, keep working at them and really have fun doing so.

    See you around.
    Helen

    • Thanks for the insight Helen. It’s not surprising that even today, oppurtunities are still being offered to people based on sex and not ability or merit. These things should be common sense now. But the fact that you went through the grinder to get to where you wanted to be is an inspiration. Since I cannot relate, I can only imagine what it must have been like for you in the early years as a civil engineer – lone woman in a male-dominated field. But now, I’m guessing you’re hardened veteran in these matters 🙂

      Thanks again. And happy new year.
      Derrick.

  3. Enjoyed reading this and I can tell that this comes from a very personal level for you.

  4. Happy New Year to you! glad to see that you’re writing again. It’s good to stay in the groove! Thank you for taking the time to share with all of us!

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