Posts Tagged ‘human’

ssrlogo2ajclogo2@anarchyroll
10/21/2014

The paradigm of physical exercise is false. There is no such thing as just exercising the body. The mind, heart, and spirit are always worked out and remolded just like biceps and abdominals.

When the Centers for Disease Control is listing the mental benefits of physical fitness, then there is more to the topic than just a series of rah-rah, feel good statements and slogans.

In America, where there is an obesity epidemic, any excuse to exercise is a good excuse. Pushing the limits of one’s physical fitness is hard, very hard, if it wasn’t then more people would do it. It should come as no surprise that those who battle depression also are less physically active than the average person.

Working out really is hard. Fitness models, bodybuilders, athletes, and supplement salespeople would love it if you believed that you are just an unmotivated sloth. But, show me an insanely fit man or woman and I’ll show you a person who is dependent on supplements like a crack addict. To work out completely naturally, with nothing but water, food, and sleep is a difficult proposition. Add a full time job it’s that much harder. Add in family, friends, hobbies, and the human condition and it is no wonder that the entire developed world isn’t dealing with an obesity epidemic.

The sick joke is that fitness inspiration through imagery of unrealistically, aesthetically in shape men and women can have an inverse effect on the desire to even get started. After all, how much time, effort, energy, money, ambition, and sacrifice is going to be required to become as fit as those Instagram fitness celebrities?

This is where a paradigm shift is required. Paradigm shifts take as much time, energy, and effort as all the crunches and clean eating required to get a ripped 6-8 pack. BUT, a paradigm shift can be as simple as seeing something differently and taking action differently based upon a different vision/way of thinking. The paradigm shift in this case is to see exercise as not just exercise for the body, but as exercise for the heart, mind, and spirit as well. A way of becoming more fit as a whole person. Not just as an aesthetically pleasing narcissist. But to be healthy, literally from the inside out.

Anxiety and depression are the thick thieves of living life. I can attest that from experience. If doing some push ups, squats, crunches, weight lifting, yoga, jumping jacks, and jogging can do it’s part to combat these twin towers of terror in daily living, why not? It’s cheaper than a Prozac prescription. But self-mastery is hard, and that’s what we’re talking about when we’re talking about the need to exercise for the benefit of mental health.

Self mastery is hard, very hard. If it were easy then everybody would do it.

I can’t pretend to have all the answers. I can only speak to what effect physical exercise had on me while I was in the throes of my depression as an adolescent. I used exercise as a distraction. I used it as an excuse to not deal with my larger, more encompassing mental/emotional problems and disorders. I would go to the gym after detention during my high school years. Rather than seeking advice from educated, trained personnel I would pump iron and run laps. As time went on I found yoga and meditation.

Lifting weights, doing cardio, practicing yoga, and meditation were/are all wonderfully helpful distractions from “getting help”. But any singular or combination is infinitely better than watching television, surfing the internet, spacing out, laying in bed awake, remembering past negative events, and/or imagining future confrontational events; all of which I am guilty of doing repeatedly if not habitually.

We are all flawed beings. We all seek to be perfect, if not at least better. We’re all doing our best, even if our best is not good enough. If physical exercise can improve our mind and our spirit, then why not set aside ten minutes, to a half hour a day a few times a week to becoming more whole and making a good faith effort to fill the hole in our soul?

The effort required to expand my comfort zone to putting the effort in there, fuels my effort to expand it elsewhere, and I hope it does for you too…

ssrlogo2ajclogo2by @anarchyroll
7/13/2014

Life is simple but not easy.

A paradox that confuses and confounds more human beings than those who have a grasp on it. Identifying problems is simple, enacting solutions is not easy.

I am aware of most of my flaws, shortcomings, and failures but taking the corrective action I know that I need to take is difficult at the highest level. Becoming aware was simple, taking action has not been easy.

I have been amazed at how hard enacting solutions has been in my personal development. I see my errors and/or am aware when I am taking a step backwards, failing, etc but it is as if there is an invisible hand metaphorically holding me in place, holding me in a script of stagnant, repetitive, counter productive decisions and/or actions.

I think there are a lot of people who can relate. I don’t look at myself as some kind of uniquely cursed wannabe martyr. I believe an overwhelming number of human beings struggle with self mastery. Finding the balance between patience and hustle can be tricky.

Paradigms die hard and shift slow. Traditionally change is slow and gradual. But the ego/shadow or the part of yourself that doesn’t want to change will use the truth of slow change, as an excuse and justification for not taking action in the moments of choice.

To be a coward when courage is required. I have run against this sticking point which at times feels like bouncing off a brick wall. How to move past this? Identifying that is simple:

  • Persistence of effort
  • Boldness and trust in the face of adversity and the unknown
  • Pushing through the pain period

That is what is required, that I know.

How to enact those principles, tactics, and techniques when my mind is racing or blank, my breathing is short, my stomach is in knots, and/or my limbs are shaky? Well, that’s hard, but nothing worth having comes easy. And self-mastery and living life as the best version of myself is certainly worth having.

 

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by @anarchyroll
4/29/2014

Recently I was in a public place where the emergency broadcast system went off on a couple of flat screen televisions that were mounted to the walls. What made this odd was that no less than three people turned their attention to the various screens, with their fingers crossed, and with a wishful tone in their voice said, “zombie apocalypse?!”

The only thing sadder than that is how many more people in that place were probably thinking it but didn’t say. What is more pathetic than that is the large number of people who secretly wish for, or more shamefully are preparing for, a zombie apocalypse. If only these people tried to get in shape like the vampires and werewolves from Twilight, then the time they would have to dedicate to a real life spouse as opposed to an imaginary or virtual one would take up the mental space to prepare for such nonsense.

A real life zombie apocalypse is coming, it’s called climate change.

Hurricane Katrina submerged 80% of New Orleans in water and caused over $100 billion in damage. Superstorm Sandy caused $80 billion and turned Manhattan into Venice. Did you know Venice now floods 1/3 of every year? The current drought in California is affecting 100% of the state. How about that deadly tsunami in Asia that killed 150,000 people? There’s no need to wait for an apocalypse people, the third world has been living in one for decades and the first world is headed in the same direction but just doesn’t want to think about it.

The Pentagon doesn’t give a shit about zombies, wizards, or leprechauns but regards climate change as a direct threat to national security.

We all need an escape from reality from time to time. I have certainly been guilty of being addicted to escapism, not wanting to face the real in favor of daydreams, binge TV watching, and video games. Unfortunately, a growing percentage of very smart adults are becoming so lost in the paradigm of personal entertainment entitlement, they are spending real-time, money, and resources on a concept that would get a child grounded at home, picked on in school, and forced to see a psychiatrist, take meds, or both.

Cosplayers take off the costume and go back to the real world. Zombie Apocalypse believers think that they actually know something others don’t. But lying to oneself in order to add value, purpose, and a sense of importance is not new. I empathize with those who are so bored with their own existence they have to hope and prepare for a fantasy event seen in too many mainstream movies over the past decade to become reality. Life has no instruction manual. Sometimes we lose sight of who we are and what we really want to do with our lives. Sometimes events outside of our circle of influence force us to change course to a life that doesn’t allow us to see or think beyond the survival plane for an extended period of time. Sometimes people don’t develop the internal muscles of maturity, responsibility, and desire to achieve. I empathize with people like this, I really do. I once found myself very lost, very bored with life, very much preferring the world of my imagination to that of the real.

But all these people addicted to fantasy are enablers of a real, physical world that is turning into something that will make the human race endangered or extinct. It is happening now, in real-time, before our very eyes.

There is nothing wrong with turning one’s brain off and doing something that is mindlessly fun after a long hard day or week of work. TV, movies, video games, comics, scrap-booking, web surfing, reading, concerts, drinking, whatever. Adults who pay their way through this world on top of keeping their mental, emotional, and physical shit together earn the right to have some “me time” to do something that makes them feel like a happy child again.

The problem, which seems to be evolving into an epidemic is people refusing to take up any cause other than their own entertainment. A widespread victim mentality along with disposable income and leisure time have turned multiple generations of human beings essentially into zombies. Unwilling, under the guise of being unable to think when they aren’t having their inner child killed while “on the clock”. But a professional or personal life that leaves one feeling dead inside is no reason to hope for the manifestation of George A. Romero’s wet dream. What we need is for people to move in packs like aggressive zombies with the rage virus to create policies and enact change on a global level to:

  • cut greenhouse gas emissions
  • mandate clean energy
  • reduce the size and need for landfills
  • build levies
  • punish polluters
  • take responsibility for keeping our water clean, our air breathable, and our food as organic as possible.

A zombie apocalypse implies that the Earth will still be inhabitable for the select few humans who are as over-prepared to be “Left 4 Dead” and “The Last of Us” as they are undersexed. But the real apocalypse for the human race seems more and more that it will not come from a rising of the dead but a rising of the sea levels. Maybe if AMC could make a slow burn narrative drama about that subject we can make some headway. I can promise learning about the causes of and solutions to global warming will in no way be any more boring than the second season of The Walking Dead.