Sharpen the Saw

I was reading the book 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. There is a chapter about sharpening the saw, and it really resonated with me. I found this concept to be similar to mindful time. The story behind this is that there was a competition between a younger and older lumberjack to see who can cut down the most trees. The younger one continued to cut the trees without breaks, while the older one took breaks throughout the day. The older lumberjack ended up winning, despite being older, weaker, and less energetic. The reason is because he took breaks to sharpen his saw. A sharp saw will win over a dull one anytime.

This story and concept show how important it is to take breaks to sharpen the saw, meaning to gain clarity. Constant working leads to exhausting and cloudiness of the mind. You will be much more effective when you give yourself space. I have to say my best ideas comes from taking time to breathe and be mindful. When I am journaling, taking walks, reading, watching inspirational vloggers, or on vacations. It is important to be present, and in the moment, so that your mind can breathe and gain insight. Our minds need breaks. The mind won’t work well with continuous work and overload. You may think it is a good idea to keep going, but doing that just weakens your clarity and creativity.

I am staying indoors today, due to another snow storm, thankfully not as bad as the last one, but I wanted to be productive and mindful today. This is where this idea came from. I didn’t want to waste my only day off for the next 10 days on distractions only. This is where mindful practices come in handy. I did some reading, some yoga, some writing as you can see. I even found going outside to clean my car therapeutic. Most may see it as a chore or annoying, and I do majority of the time as well, but today I didn’t mind going out. I put some music on, and cleaned the snow off, it was kind of nice. The snow is really fluffy, so it came off easy, and it gave me a nice workout. It was nice to just do something, rather than just sitting inside.

I know this topic has become a recurring theme of my posts, but that just means how important this concept is, and how it never gets old to be reminded of it. Breaks are really important, sharpen the mind, like you sharpen the saw. This can only come from giving yourself the space to think and relax. To be in the moment and enjoy life as it is. Work will always be there, but the moment will not.

My Week off the Grid(Mostly)

I just wanted to write about my experience of less online distractions. I didn’t plan on not going on social media as much this week. It just happened. I believe I spent a total of 2 hours on SNS. On Monday I was feeling somber, unmotivated, uninspired, and mood was low. I honestly did not want any distractions from the online world. I just wanted to be in my own world. I did some journaling, some reflecting, some yoga, some sudoku, just mindful stuff. I spent the whole day offline, and I really enjoyed. I just felt being online would just bring me down more, and I wanted to immerse in my feelings to get an understanding of it. I didn’t want to distract myself with outside information and thoughts. I wanted to work though my own thoughts. It worked.

I felt much better on Tuesday, but I also wasn’t in the mood to go back online. I enjoyed my time away, and didn’t want to go back, so I used that time to plan a trip to Ocean City. I booked my hotel, and will be going in late September. That just put me in a better mood. I always wanted to have an ocean view and just listen to the sounds of the waves. I wanted to experience something exciting, since I wasn’t able to experience much this year, due to COVID. I was now in a better mood.

Now Wednesday and Thursday I scrolled a bit to catch up, but loss interest quickly. I did watch a couple of videos on Youtube, but did not engage in any comments. Now Friday I took the day off, since I wasn’t scrolling as much. I used that time to continue writing my book. I hit a wall about a week ago, but found inspiration again.

It is now Saturday, I just finished my walk, and I still have no urge to scroll. I have found much inspiration, during this week. I have used my time much more wisely, and used it to be productive. I end the week feeling motivated, inspired, excited and content. I written a draft for my next blog post, and I also decided to write this post.

I have also meditated more than I have had in awhile. It has been nice. Also, I tend to get a bit too attached to these idols I follow, and this time apart from SNS, especially Twitter has removed that attachment. I also don’t have the urge to post my experiences as much either. I usually post some pictures of my walks in nature, but did not think about doing that at all today, during my walk. I just wanted to experience the moment, and did not care to let others know what I was up to. This time off the grid has brought much peace to my inner being. It has inspired me. It has allowed me to just focus on me, and I really needed that in the beginning of the week. I come out at the end of this week feeling rejuvenated, content, at peace, relaxed and happy.

I hope whenever you are feeling sad, uninspired, somber etc,. You also take the time to be mindful and focus on yourself. You might be surprised what that time can do for your well-being.