Zen Habits Blog

What would you do to improve yourself? Well, let’s step 1 step backwards. The first question may be, why should you even bother improving yourself? And I think the answer to that is some thing like, so you don’t suffer any more stupidly than you have to. And maybe so others do not have to either. It is something like that. You know, like there is a true injunction at the bottom of it. It’s not some casual self-improvement philosophy. It’s that if you do not organize yourself properly, you’ll pay for it and in a significant way. And so will the people around you now, and you may say, well, I do not care about that, but that is actually not correct. You actually do care about that because if you’re in pain, you may care about it. And that means you do care about, even if it’s just that negative way, you know, it’s very rare you could find somebody who’s in excruciating pain who would ever say, well, it would be no better.

If I had been out of this sort of pain is one of those things that brings the notion that it would be better if it didn’t exist along with it, it is in controvertible. So you get your act together so that there isn’t any more dumb pain around you than necessary. Well, so then the question might be, well, how would you go about getting your act together? And the answer to this, and this is a phenomenological notion, too. It is something like, look around for something that bothers you and see if you’re able to repair it. So now you think, well, let’s say, let’s say you enter, you can do this in a room. It’s quite fun to do it. Just when you’re sitting in a room just like a space, maybe your bedroom, you can sit there and just sort of meditate on it and think, okay, if I wanted to spend 10 minutes making this room better, what do I must do?

And you have to ask yourself that, right? It’s not a command. It is like a real question and things will pop out in the room that, you know, like there’s a heap of papers over there. That’s sort of bugging you. And you know, that perhaps little order there are a fantastic thing. And you know, you haven’t, there is some crap behind your computer screen that you haven’t attended for like six months. And the space would be marginally better if it was somewhat less dusty and the cables, were not all tangled up the same way. And like, if you, if you let yourself just to think about the expanse in which you exist at that moment, there’ll be all sorts of things. That’ll pop out in it that you can just fix. And, you know, I would say, well, if you’re coming to see me for childbirth, this simplest thing for us to do first would just be to get you to arrange your room. You think, well, is that psychotherapy? And the answer is, well, it depends on how you conceive the constraints of your being. And I Would say begin where you are able to start.

You know, If, if something announces itself to you, which is a strange way of thinking about it as in need of repair, that you could fix, then Hey, fix it. You fix a hundred things like that. Your life is going to be a lot different. Now, I often tell people to repair the things you repeat daily, because people tend to think of those as trivial, right? You get, you brush your teeth, you have your breakfast. You know, you’ve got your routines which you go through every day. Well, those probably constitute 50% of your lifetime. And people think, well, they’re mundane. I don’t have to pay attention to them. It’s like, no, no, that’s exactly wrong things you do daily. Those are the main things you do. Hands. All you have to do is do the arithmetic. You’ve figured out right away. So a hundred alterations to your broader domain of being, and there’s a lot less rubbish and there’s a great deal less crap around it.

A lot fewer traps for you to step into. And so that is in keeping with Ewing’s thought about erasing the dis as soon as you’ve got your mind and your emotions together, and once you’re acting out that, then you can extend what you’re prepared to consider yourself itself and start fixing up the things that are a part of your wider extent. Now, sometimes you don’t know how to do that. So you might say, imagine you’re walking down Bloor street and there’s this man who’s like schizophrenia and alcoholic and has been on the streets for 10 years. He kind of stumbled towards you and you know, incoherently mutters something, that is a problem. And it would be useful if you could repair it, but you, haven’t got a clue about how to repair that. You simply walk around that and go find something that you could fix, because if you muck about it, that not only is it unlikely you will help that person, it is very likely you’ll get hurt yourself.

So, you know, just because while you are experiencing things themselves, as in need of repair, does not mean that it’s you right then and there, which should repair them. You must have some humility. You know, you do not walk up to a helicopter that isn’t working and just begin tinkering away with it. You have to remain within your domain of competence. But most of the time, if people look at their lifestyles, you know, it’s very interesting thing to do. I liked, I liked the idea of the room because you can do that at the drop of a hat. You know, you return to where you reside and sit down and think, okay, I’m going to make this place better for half an hour.

What should I do If they have to ask And things will just pop up like mad. And it is partly because your head is a very strange thing. As soon as you give it a title, a genuine aim, it will reconfigure the entire world in keeping with that aim. That is actually how you see to start with. And so if you set it a task, especially you’ve got to be genuine about it, which is why you have to bring your thoughts and emotions together. And then you must get them in your body. So you’re acting consistently. You have to be real about the aim, but as soon as you aim, the world will reconfigure itself around that aim, which is very strange. And it is, it’s, it’s technically correct. You know, the best example of this, you’ve all seen this video where you see the basketballs being tossed back and forth between members of the white team versus the black team.
And well, you’re doing that. A gorilla walks up into the middle of the video and don’t see it.

It’s like, you know, if you thought about that experiment for around five decades, that would be about the ideal amount of time to spend thinking about it. Because what it shows you is that you see what you aim at and that guy, if you’re able to get one thing through your head and as a consequence of even being in university, that would be a good one. You see what you aim at. And so, because one inference you might draw from that is be careful what you aim at,
Right? It what you aim at determines
How the world manifests itself to you. And so if the world is manifesting itself in a very negative way, one thing to ask is, are you aiming at the right thing? Now?

You know, I’m not trying to reduce everybody’s issues to an improper aim. People today get cut off at the knees for a variety of reasons. You know, they get sick, they have injuries, there’s a random element to being that’s for sure. But, and that means you don’t want to take anythingthat specific phrase too much, you need to bind it with the fact that arbitrary things do happen to people, but it’s still a great thing to ask.