Art Tricks, Money Traps (Work-Life Balance)

We did it dear readers. We finally got through it.

We made it to the end of my series on the Wellness Factors of Life, AKA addressing the OECD index, or if you prefer, the Postconsumers series. What started out as a wild bid on my part in considering how to live a life with less and yet fuller than you could ever imagine, is now closing out with a topic more then fitting – work-life balance. The last factor that can directly effect your over-all state of being in this world of ours.

Because let’s face it, the average global citizen doesn’t even realize they have a creative component of who they are. Creativity that should be nurtured like all of the other things.

Your creative spark absolutely needs to be considered, and it connects quite well with areas of health, spirit, work, family/friends, environment, and personal fulfilment. When all of these things come together, your life will sing with excellence. Or maybe it’ll all fall apart if you ignore any one of those things for too long.

Yikes, that is a depressing thought to fathom. But I’ve been there creative cuties, and yes I may share that story in full one day. The story which led to one of my greatest theories on the importance of pursuing your purpose, it could be a campfire theory even, but not today is not that day friends.

I’ve got a different kind of wisdom to impart.

But first, let’s put a cap on that pen, and bring out the fundamental of life once more.

The Bare Knuckle Necessities

I’m going to make a bold statement.

You cannot achieve the perfect balance of life:
career (work),
spirituality (spirit, creativity),
space (home, studio, environment),
relationships (romantic, family, friends),
health (exercise, meditation, reading),
and fulfillment (hobbies, recreation)

All of these are noble pursuits, and completely attainable, but most definitely not all at once, and never more then two or three at a time. I know you’ve tried to accomplish this on your own, and you may have even fought against the theory because you wanted to disprove it. But like many idioms, adages, and metaphors of life, life hits back, over and over.

It’s not about besting life friends, it’s about taking it all in, giving it your best shot at a few areas at a time, and then continuing onward.

So for you that might mean getting a grip on health, and career for quite a while. At least until you’ve seen some positive gains and have set up some new healthy habits for yourself. I’m not going to devolve this post into going over theories I’ve discussed before on health, productivity and habit setting, but those topics do exist on timotheories.com. This is about you being okay with striving for progress in certain areas, and then moving into progress in other areas.

Automation Station

Effectively you are creating rhythms and routines for yourself that your body, mind, and soul will be grateful for. Think about it for a minute, we are so comfortable falling into the same shitty habits every day after work? Ever wonder why we do that? Hint: it’s not because we want to.

Instead of beating yourself up because you didn’t do everything on your list today, focus on a few things to accomplish each day and follow through on them. Once the systems are in place to make those good decisions a reality every day (usually after a 90 day commitment), you will eventually create your own ideal, and balance will now have a new meaning.

It becomes less about having everything in equal measure, and more about shifting attentions on these areas of wellness as needed. So put the time in, build your lists, schedule tasks, and make one concrete action towards your area of focus each day. As Rocky says, that’s how winning’s done.

For me, what that means right now is making art every week, and marketing my business. Those are two simple things, but I’ve been neglecting them for relationships, work, and health. It’s time to focus back on the art and my own purpose.

theories Summarized

Artists of all stripes have to face the same pressures of work-life balance as do those that ignore the creative path. There is nothing wrong with going one way or the other, but when you make art, never assume your failings at balance are due to the pursuit of creativity – we all struggle with this. Skill, determination and a commitment to improvement are essential in moving towards success within the arts, as is true of any field.

The difference is that your path is not set in stone, therefore the risks and rewards are much greater. But I have a theory that you already know what you need to chase.

Tim!

I’ll Be Back, and Arms, and Legs (Arnold, Successful Body Building)

This is a story in progress.

It’s not finished yet because… well, I’m not dead.

That’s what I said the first time around, when I wrote the that initial entry on one of my personal heroes, Arnold Schwarzenegger. And I have gotten better since December, I’ve slowly but surely increased my capacity for greatness – through writing, reading, disciplined meditation, clean living, and creative pursuits. And especially through exercise.

Arnold Schwarzenegger is a great example of someone who goes after what he wants. I’m paraphrasing but here are some examples of things Arnold has said.

I want to be the greatest bodybuilder in the world. Done. And he went through the rungs to get there. Then he decided, I want to be one of the great movie stars of his time. Done. Thank you Arnie for being The Terminator, and all of the other action hero roles you’ve taken on. And also, he decided, I want to be the governor of California… Guess what? Boom. Done.

Arnold demonstrates that with hard work and following key rules, you can have success. As he famously said in his six rules to success speech,

none of these rules work unless you do. Just remember, you can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.

 

 

6 Rules of Success

But what are the six rules of success? Well of course, let me lay them down for you, real simple like.

  1. Trust yourself – Many young people are getting so much advice from their parents and teachers and everyone. But what is most important is that you have to dig deep down, dig deep down and ask yourself, who do you want to be? Not what, but who. Figure out for yourself what makes you happy, no matter how crazy it may sound to other people.
  2. Break the rules – Not the law, but break the rules. It is impossible to be a maverick or a true original if you’re too well behaved and don’t want to break the rules. You have to think outside the box. That’s what I believe. After all, what is the point of being on this earth if all you want to do is be liked by everyone and avoid trouble?
  3. Don’t be afraid to fail – Anything I’ve ever attempted, I was always willing to fail. You can’t always win, but don’t be afraid of making decisions. You can’t be paralyzed by fear of failure or you will never push yourself. You keep pushing because you believe in yourself and in your vision and you know that it is the right thing to do, and success will come. So don’t be afraid to fail.
  4. Don’t Listen to the Naysayers – How many times have you heard that you can’t do this and you can’t do that and it’s never been done before? I love it when someone says that no one has ever done this before, because then when I do it, that means that I’m the first one that has done it. So pay no attention to the people that say it can’t be done. I always listen to myself and say, “Yes, you can.”
  5. Work Your Butt Off – Leave no stone unturned. Mohammed Ali, one of my great heroes, had a great line in the ’70s when he was asked, “How many sit-ups do you do?” He said, “I don’t count my sit-ups. I only start counting when it hurts. When I feel pain, that’s when I start counting, because that’s when it really counts.” That’s what makes you a champion.It’s important to have fun in life, but when you’re out there partying, horsing around, someone out there is working hard. Someone is getting smarter and someone is winning. Just remember that. But if you want to win, there is absolutely no way around hard, hard work. None of these rules work unless you do. Just remember, you can’t climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets.
  6. Give Something Back – Whatever path you take in your life, you must always find time to give something back, to your community, your state or to your country. Reaching out and helping people will give you more satisfaction than anything you’ve ever done.

     

But he only developed these rules by standing on the shoulders of his own giants, and let me just say, one of Arnie’s heroes should be yours too. Ever heard of Reg Park? The original italian stallion? Except he was actually British.

The Original Hercules

There have been a number of films representing the greek god Hercules, but the one that caught the attention of a young Schwarzenegger was Hercules and the Conquest of Atlantis (1961), starring Reg Park in his film debut.

Reg Park was an English bodybuilder, businessman and actor. He inspired Schwarzenegger to become a bodybuilder, so if his regimen for beginners can work for Arnold, then it’ll work for us too.

You see dear readers, I’ve been exercising for almost a year straight, alternating between strength and core training (M/W/F) & cardio and meditation (Tu/Th). And while I don’t want to make this post about exercise, because I easily could break down the exercises portion of The Education of a Bodybuilder, instead, I’ll leave this here for those of you so inclined to read it. The writer is on point, and breaks down the exercises of the book really well.

theories Summarized

 

On this wisdom of Wednesday I leave you with something to ponder, what’s stopping you from committing to exercise time? I have this theory that health, wealth, and happiness are within reach creative cuties, but like Arnold says, remember the six rules.

You can do it. I believe in you, for you too are destined for great things.

Tim!

Fields of Hopes and Dreams (Cross talk Ep. 24)

There are lots of great stories of triumph over adversity in the history of film. Movies that feature down on their luck athletes making it happen, business professionals that outsmart the man, and individuals with physical challenges that accomplish more in two hours then you and I could hope to in a year.

People watch these films with the hope that those amazing individuals will defy the odds and achieve the impossible in inspiring displays of courage, strength, intelligence, wit, and skill. Making the best of a situation and ultimately coming ahead despite the difficulty of the endeavour.

Right in the feels.

If you think of films like The Shawshank Redemption, Ray, Schindler’s List, Forrest Gump, and Cast Away, then you know your are on the right track to your own personal Field of Dreams.

Oh My Heart, It’s A Fish Out Of Water

This theme almost always focuses on an individuals in dire situations. A fish out of water if you will. And yet these people make it work for them, changing the circumstances and getting to the root of the problem, even if the solution seems unlikely.

But whenever we run an episode of Cross Talk, we want to talk through these topics in a meaningful way, focusing on interesting examples and testing out theories that can open up the conversation. Which is why episode number twenty four of Cross Talk is a genre defying theme that stands out – triumph over adversity.

We’re back at it, spending time on three case studies of film that exemplify this idea and which might not be your first pick. We talk about the accessibility of The King’s Speech, the imbalances of anti-heroes in The Big Short, and how Michael Keaton has finally turned it around in Birdman: Or The Unexpected Virtue of Ignorance.

This is gonna be an episode full of warm and fuzzies. Check it out below!

This episode should make you feel good in another way. We’ve officially added Mike Dadural to the cast! Yeah yeah!

Now for the repeater section of the test. What did you think of the episode? Any comments on how we can do things differently? Would you have chosen the three films that we did? We really do want you to join in on the conversation and let us know what you thought!

Please comment, subscribe, and share this video with friends. As always, be excellent to one another!

Tim!()

Picture Perfect Cravings (Tony Litster Success Stories)

Everyone loves a good success story. It stimulates a part of our brain that is linked to the reward centre. It’s likely why motivational speakers have been really populariz over the past 70+ years, at least in western culture anyway.

Quite a few years ago, I got serious about the teachings of man by the name of Tony Litster. I could have selected from many different coaches, gurus, and experts, but I landed on him. Mostly be accident. Tony Litster is a success coach, who focuses on success over addictions, namely pornography. Now, I’m no chicken, and will admit that I have struggled with this exact challenge in the past.

In fact, I bawked at the idea that I’d ever find someone who understood the struggle. But then I found Tony.

Tony Litster Straight Talk

Litster teaches that pornography addiction is quite often a result of the shame cycle, which comes out of childhood challenges and continues right through our adult lives.

The shame cycle makes you believe that your self-worth is tied directly into what others think of you. And that’s just not true. Each of us is invaluable and infinitely worth our lives. Learning to separate yourself from your behaviour, and more importantly, your behaviour from your sense of worth, is what allows you to move away from stimulants like pornography that ultimately do not satisfy. How you do this is by reinforcing the new idea of who you are:

One of the ways is by speaking positive belief statements to yourself, and repeating them over and over again (through recorded tracks set to classical music) – positive affirmations.

Another way is through meditation, which means settling into exhaustion for only a brief period of time, and then allowing yourself to experience all of the thoughts racing through your head while you focus on breathing in and out.

A third way is through regular and exciting forms of exercise. This could mean time at the gym, rock climbing, playing team sports or preparing for a marathon.

But there is so much more that he teaches then those three concepts. From drinking lots of water regularly, to maintaining a neutral pH balance, to visualization routines, to paying off high interest debts, this guy is in it for the long haul. He really focuses on dwelling within reality, while dealing with the chemical imbalances of serotonin, dopamine and adrenalin that result from a lifetime of pornography addiction. Better yet, there are effective ways to combat these high levels of chemical stimulation from porn watching…

Biological Peacekeeping

Adrenaline is easily fed through competition – sports, games, exercise or frightening activities like public speaking. Serotonin can be kept in check via meditation, and also by practicing Yoga. Lastly dopamine is released when we get creative – writing, playing music, painting, and using our imaginations.

Seems simple right? But it’s just another example of the importance regular exercise, meditation, and creativity play in a balanced life. I only discovered that my body was out of balance because I was constantly drawn to watching pornography whenever I would come home from work, and my girlfriend at the time couldn’t really understand why I struggled with this compulsion (read: the shame cycle). It stemmed from challenges of my youth, which probably deserve a whole other post to themselves, but this is just another layer to purpose of timotheories, and why digitally curating at heart is essential for me to live.

If I didn’t make art, take care of my body, and my mind, I’d be a hot mess. And no use to anybody.

theories Summarized

Maybe this post would’ve been better served for a timely Thursday entry, but when I sat down to write this afternoon, and saw the topic Facebook Success Stories, I thought to myself, no one really cares if I share success stories from other people. You’re all here because of my authentic experiences, and at the core of my stories are tales such as this one that I’ve hinted at. Picking up the pieces and fighting against something which I did not want for myself was imperative dear readers.

My theories all stem from this desire to live a life completely chosen of free will, and pornography was limiting me from doing just that. So I to you without motive or expectation, #liveyourlife and you will learn to #loveyourlife.

Tim!

Dum De Dum Dum Dee Da (David Deida)

I’m blue da ba dee da ba die, da ba dee da ba die, da ba dee da ba die.

When I was a boy, I thought that was a cool song. But when I was a boy, I thought a lot of things were cool, and boy was I wrong. Luckily for all of us, I grew up, and along the way I learned a few things about desire, love, spirituality, and work.

And thankfully, I am no longer blue. Because who wants to be blue when you can be green? (read: my True Colors test results).

Pursuing knowledge, gaining insights, becoming closer to the truth of the matter. These are the things that those of us with “masculine” energy should chasing after at all times.

Worldwide Trainings

I first decided to pursue personal enlightenment back in 2007, just after I had graduated from University, but before I had really settled into any discernable sort of full-time work. I’ve read books on science, philosophy, business, psychology, sociology, history, biography, and the ever popular self-improvement. Now I’ll admit, the first few years of reading were purely based on whimsy, recommendations from friends, and whatever I came across.

But one summer in 2010, a friend of mine lent me a copy of this book by David Deida, and I realized that I knew little to nothing about anything beyond what I could see.

You see, David Deida is an American author and life coach who specializes in books about relationships between men and women as they relate to each other through spirituality and sexuality. At this point, Deida is an interntational bestselling author with many of his books being published in various languages.

He is also known for hosting workshops on spiritual growth and intimacy, and is one of the many founding associates at the Integral Institute. Some of his more popular books on human spirituality include The Way of the Superior Man, Finding God Through Sex, and Blue Truth and the autobiographical novel Wild Nights.

And back in 2010, he taught me something about women, that I’ll never forget.

Superiority Complex

I decided to reread The Way of the Superior Man this month because I know what my purpose in life is, but oh so many of us refuse to acknowledge it.

Coming to terms with the notion that you may be doing everything wrong in your life is hard to accept, but Deida teaches that it is only when we are in moments of quiet reflection that our purpose presents itself. And it will do this over and over again if we need a refresher, all we have to do is sit in quiet reflection. In fact, it needs to be more important than any relationship you will ever have with a woman, and if you stick to your purpose, the woman you are with will be all the more attracted to you.

Deida has jam packed his book full of tidbits such as this, and while at times it seems overwhelming to read, it slowly starts to make more and more sense.

Masculine energy is about consistency, while feminine energy is constantly moving, it is life itself. He goes on to explain further that no matter what gender we are, we all have both kinds of energy, a sort of yin an yang of sexual identity. Where it gets complicated is in understanding that as a man, in a relationship with a woman (which can easily apply to gay men and women as well as sexual identities) it becomes your responsibility to provide the masculine energy so that the woman may focus on feminine energy, where balance is created in the differences.

Ideas of masculine energy leading the relationship, living according to a persona code, seeking freedom at all times, and seeking challenges constantly are some of the things that Deida expects of an evolved male.

That means learning to enjoy the drama in a relationship, working on your sexual identity and skill-set, while living outside of your personal comfort zone. What that means is allowing the woman in your life to communicate with you. Talk about the problem, but do not seek to solve it. Have fun, bring humour to the situation without making fun of her, and love her as she is.

 

theories Summarized

 

I could spend a lot more time outlining the details of this book, but that would betray it’s intent. It’s about spending time with the ideas contained therein, reflecting upon them, and then introducing them into your own life. I’ll leave you with this thought – You need to be both erect and at peace simultaneously, so that she may crush you with emotion, dance, and sexuality. And that’s no theory.

Tim!motiv