SO, IT’S ALL GONE PEAR SHAPED
I recently received the attached email, which gives excellent advice on how to cope if you have been in a toxic relationship, which has eventually failed.
The thing for manly men to remember is that, if your relationship with a mature woman has failed, it probably isn’t your fault.
Get over it.
This morning, I received a long email from a reader named Evan who is struggling with letting go of a failed relationship. In his email he explains, in rather vivid detail, the signs and symptoms of a toxic relationship that has been heading south for many years. He admits that he needs to let go, but he struggles with it, because doing so means he must finally face reality, which requires him to let go of the idea in his head about how his life and relationship were suppose to be.
One particular line from his email really summed it up well: “I’m learning the hard way that the hardest thing in life is simply letting go of what you thought was real.”
Isn’t that the truth – for all of us, in all walks of life. We all have an idea in our heads about how things are, or how they’re supposed to be, and sadly this is what often messes us up and stresses us out the most. Realize this. Sometimes life doesn’t give you what you WANT because you NEED something else. And what you need often comes when you’re not looking for it. You won’t always understand it and that’s OK. Just when you think it can’t get any worse, it does. And then just when you think it can’t get any better, it does.
The key is detachment – letting go of the life you expected, so you can make the best of the life that’s waiting for you. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it. Here are six strategies for making this happen:
1. Create some healthy space for yourself. – Sometimes you are just too close to the puzzle to see the big picture. You need to take a few steps back to gain clarity on the situation. The best way to do this is to simply take a short break – a breather – a vacation – and explore something else for a little while. Why? So you can return to where you started and see things with a new set of eyes. And the people there may see you differently too. Returning where you started is entirely different than never leaving. ( from the “Happiness” chapter of our book)
2. Accept the truth and practice being grateful for what is. – To let go is to be grateful for the experiences that made you laugh, made you cry, and helped you learn and grow. It’s the acceptance of everything you have, everything you once had, and the possibilities that lie ahead. It’s all about finding the strength to embrace life’s challenges and changes, to trust your intuition, to learn as you go, to realize that every experience has value, and to continue taking positive steps forward.
3. Forgive with all your heart, as often as necessary. – Forgiveness is a constant attitude of choosing happiness over hurt – acceptance over resistance. It’s about acknowledging that we’re all mistaken sometimes; sometimes even the best of us do foolish things – things that have severe consequences. But it doesn’t mean we are evil and unforgiveable, or that we can’t be trusted ever afterward. Know this. Sit with it. It might take time to forgive, because it takes strength to forgive. Because when you forgive, you love with all your might. And when you love like this, a heavenly, healing light shines upon you. This forgiveness – true forgiveness – brings you to a place where you can sincerely say, “Thank you for that experience,” and mean it with all your heart.
4. Concentrate only on what can be changed. – Realize that not everything in life is meant to be modified or perfectly understood. Live, let go, learn what you can and don’t waste energy worrying about the things you can’t change. Focus exclusively on what you can change. And if you can’t change something that’s upsetting you, change the way you think about it. Review your options and then re-frame what you don’t like into a starting point for achieving something different in your life. ( from the “Adversity” chapter of our book)
5. Make the NOW the primary focus of your life. – Now is the moment. The past is just a memory. The future is a mental projection. You can choose to dwell back in the past for learning and joyous reflection. You can choose to dwell in the future for visualization and practical planning. However, any time your awareness floats away to the past or future frequently for negative purposes, you are suffocating your ability to thrive in the only moment you ever have… the NOW. Past and future literally do not exist right now – feel the freedom in this truth.
6. Embrace your quirks, your mistakes, and the fact that life is a lesson. – Life is a ride. Things change, people change, but you will always be YOU; so stay true to yourself and never sacrifice who you are for anyone or anything. You have to dare to be yourself, in this moment, however frightening or strange that self may prove to be. It’s about realizing that even on your weakest days you get a little bit stronger, if you’re willing to learn. Which is why, sometimes the greatest thing to come out of all your trouble and hard work isn’t what you get, but what you become. ( from the “Self-Love” chapter of our book)
And of course, if you’re struggling with any of these points, know that you are not alone. We are all in this together. Many of us are right there with you, working hard to feel better, think more clearly, and keep our lives on track. This is precisely why Marc and I wrote our book, “1,000 Little Things Happy, Successful People Do Differently.” The book is filled with short, concise tips on how to do just that. Here’s what two kind people recently said about it:
“1,000 Little Things is a really helpful book. My wife and I both find it insightful and inspiring. I ordered the book after reading Marc and Angel’s website. It is full of ideas and concepts to make you think about your life and relationships more effectively. We found it helps us see the positives in what life throws at us. It’s written in such a way that you can pick it up and put it down at anytime. Great to have on your coffee table, and makes a great gift too. Worth every cent.”
– Stuart Goddard (San Diego, CA)
I recommend your book, 1,000 Little Things, to everyone I know, especially those that enjoy the Marc and Angel blog and newsletters. It really is full of great information – the kind that we all kinda-sorta know in the back of our minds, but have trouble pulling up when we need it most. A fabulous resource for all areas of life – really helps you think more clearly about how you are handling certain situations. Thank you.
– Megan Daniels (Melbourne, Australia)
~ with thanks to Marc and Angel Hack Life firstname.lastname@example.org
TRIUMPH’S BABY SPORTS CAR WAS ALWAYS A GIRL’S CAR
There is much debate over where the Supermarine Spitfire came by its iconic name. There is no doubt whatsoever that the Triumph Spitfire was named for the war-winning fighter aircraft. Originally known as the SC, (Small Car). Developed on a tiny budget, by engineers who had no experience of small sports cars, the Spitfire was a sales success for well over 18 years. It was always an underrated car, too pretty for its own good. It was always built down to a price, having to compete with its rival the MG Midget / Austin-Healey Sprite, in the small sports car market. Interestingly, the Spitfire only came into being because of the take-over of Triumph by Leyland Motors.
The Spitfire was very closely related to its saloon car sister, the Triumph Herald, being based on a chopped-down version of the same separate chassis-frame. Unfortunately for the Herald, Vitesse, and Spitfire this chassis was rather flexible. It did have independent front and rear suspension, rack and pinion steering with an incredibly small turning circle, and the ability to accommodate a six-cylinder engine. In any event, there was no possibility of Triumph producing a monocoque bodyshell in any volume.
The incredibly pretty body was the work of Michelotti, and featured a decent boot, (trunk), space behind the seats, and a front end bonnet, (hood), that completely lifted up to allow unrivaled access to the engine bay and front suspension. Sadly this lift-up front end, coupled to a rather flexible chassis, was not very stiff and was prone to rattles. The chassis was very much of the back-bone type, so the Spitfire has strong sills to add a little stiffness. Like all Triumph sports cars of the period, the Spitfire could be bought with a pretty detachable hardtop.
The original Spitfire prototype was known as ‘Bomb,’ had a tuned version of the 1,147 cc in-line 4, which gave a paltry 63 bhp, ran on skinny 3.5-inch wheels and had a soft-top you had to build like a tent. The four-speed gearbox had no synchromesh on first gear, and came straight from the Herald 1200. The independent rear suspension was by transverse-leaf with swing-axles and would always be a weak point when it came to fast corners taken under power. Top speed was around 90 mph and the 0-60 time was a slow, slow, (by today’s standards) 17 seconds.
The Mk1 Spitfire went on sale in 1963 at £641. Development of the Spitfire Mk 1 included 3 different motorsport tuning kits, although there is no record of the stage 1 kit ever being sold. The stage 2 kit included a high compression eight port head new manifolds, 2 twin-choke 40DCOE Weber carburettors, new camshaft, and was said to be good for a serious 90bhp.
The Spitfire Mk2 came out in 1965. It had different manifolds and valve gear to the Mk1, giving the engine 67bhp. You could also have a heater, (optional), and carpets replaced rubber mats. In 1967, only 2 years later, the Spitfire Mk3 was launched. As well as a new front bumper, the Mk3 had a 1,296 cc engine, eight-port head, and churned out 75bhp. Better brakes were fitted and the electrical system was switched to negative earth. The Mk3 was ‘theoretically’ capable of the magical 100mph. The Mk3 was the first Spitfire to have a decent soft-top. With more power and a higher top speed, the swing-axle rear suspension really started to show its weak character. Initial understeer would snap to strong oversteer as the rear wheel began to tuck-in.
Somewhere in here electric overdrive was offered as a very desirable option.
The Spitfire Mk IV was eventually launched in October 1970, by which time Triumph was part of the same Leyland company that owned MG / Austin-Healey. Because the original body-tooling was worn out, Michelotti could design new front and rear end bodywork, which featured the cut-off tail also seen on the TR6. The turned-out panel joints disappeared, giving a much smoother look to the car. The new car was supposed to have a completely new front end body with flip-up headlamps, but these was dropped because of US safety legislation that never came into force. Perhaps the best part of the redesign was a brilliant angular hard-top option.
In the Spitfire IV was a new gearbox, new rear suspension, stiffer anti-roll bar at the front, new interior, and a slightly less powerful set-up of the venerable 1.3 engine.
The final version of the Spitfire Mk IV was the 1500. This shared the same long-stroke engine and all synchromesh gearbox with the final version of the MG Midget. The only bodywork change was that 1500 decals were added.
Both the Spitfire and Midget were killed-off as all development money and effort went into the much-disliked TR7.
All in all, the ‘best’ version of the Spitfire is the 1500, which is pretty to look at, quite nice to drive, very easy to tune, and mostly without vices. The car is easy to work on and maintain, and is mostly likely to have cooling and electrical problems. A well-sorted Spitfire IV / 1500 is quite capable of an extended continental road-trip, and offers decent fuel economy and ample luggage space.
The Spitfire is very easy to rebuild and restore. The bodyshell can be easily removed from the chassis, there are only 10 bolts to worry about. But, getting it back on again is more than ordinarily difficult if you don’t want badly fitting doors and uncertain alignment. Before you even buy a Spitfire, obtain the appropriate catalogs from Rimmer Bros.
With the body off, the first job is to carefully measure the chassis, in accordance with a workshop manual, to make certain the frame is still square. It is very easy to nudge a front corner out of line, some bad parking is enough to do that. A complete strip-down of the frame to bare metal is a good idea. At present I don’t believe that new chassis frames are available, so it’s a case of welding and re-alignment.
Having rebuilt a Spitfire, Vitesse and TR6, I would very strongly recommend a complete strip down of the chassis to the bare metal, shot-blasting, repair and galvanising. Any expensive work you do elsewhere on the car will be wasted when the chassis inevitably breaks somewhere around the rear suspension.
The other major problem is that bits of the bodywork will have rusted, particularly that big tip-up bonnet. The most crucial area to take back to bare metal and rebuild / repair are the sills because these contribute to the cars overall structural rigidity.
You can pay anything from under £1,000 to £15,000 for a Spitfire, depending upon condition. At the high end you want a car that has been taken back to the bare metal, had the chassis repaired and galvanised, and the bodywork restored and refitted using a proper jig. New gearbox with electric overdrive should also feature on the the more expensive car.
All versions of the Spitfire are fun, but the early version SHOULD NOT be cornered hard.
SALT DOES NOT CAUSE HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE
In another piece of contradictory research covering 8,670 French adults, scientists have concluded that the case for salt being a cause of high blood pressure is overstated, and more complex than once believed. In fact the authors of this particular study have concluded that there is no direct link between salt consumption and hypertension.
It seems that other lifestyle factors such as excessive alcohol consumption and obesity were strongly linked to a rise in blood pressure. Eating more fresh fruits and vegetables was found to be linked to a drop in blood pressure.
Stopping weight increase should be the first target in the general population to counteract the hypertension engine. ~ The American Journal of Hypertension.
On the other hand, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have just issued a report finding that 90% of US children eat more salt, (sodium chloride), than is good for them. The science surrounding salt ‘is crazy confusing’. In fact the long held belief that salt causes cardio-vascular disease is coming under increasing scrutiny.
Salt is essential for good health in people and animals. Too little salt is very bad for you, causing a condition called hyponatremia. The symptoms are confusion, chronic fatigue, and dizziness. Bad hyponatremia can cause strokes and heart attacks. If the condition goes on long enough it can be fatal. Too much salt can also be fatal.
Low salt diets can cause an increase in hormones and lipids in the blood. A 2012 study in The American Journal of Hypertension found that a low salt diet can cause elevated plasma levels of renin, cholesterol and triglycerides. A low salt diet is linked to early death in people with type 2 diabetes.
A low salt diet is particularly dangerous for the elderly. Hyponatremia is linked to broken hip joints due to falls caused by confusion and a decrease in cognitive ability.
The original ‘proof’ that salt causes high blood pressure was in a 1970s study by Lewis Dahl, who induced high blood pressure in rats by feeding them the equivalent of 50 times the average human salt intake in the western world. Dahl also stated that cultures who regularly consumed higher levels of salt tend to have higher blood pressure.
the data supporting universal salt reduction have never been compelling, nor has it ever been demonstrated that such a program would not have unforeseen negative side effects. ~ Gary Taubes in Science magazine.
There is a healthy range of salt intake for most people, the range seems to be 1.5 to 3 teaspoons of salt a day. Too little salt and food tastes bland. To much salt in food makes it almost inedible. The key, as always is to take everything in moderation, avoid processed foods, and avoid modern wheat.
Modern wheat tends to result in an increase in fat around the stomach, and the Mayo Clinic says this is really bad for blood pressure. In another piece of contradictory research, the Mayo Clinic found that an increase of just 5 lbs in fat around the stomach will cause a rise in blood pressure.
To our knowledge, for the first time, we showed that the blood pressure increase was specifically related to increases in abdominal visceral fat… ~ Dr Naima Covassin.
Abdominal visceral fat is the classic ‘beer belly’ and it is caused by sudden increases in blood sugar, such as when drinking alcohol, sugary drinks, eating white bread… Take this theory far enough and it’s obvious that sugar causes high blood pressure, and not salt.
In order to reduce blood pressure, it seems likely that losing weight, cutting down on alcohol, and avoiding modern wheat, is likely to be more effective than cutting down on table salt. The recommended maximum sugar intake is between 5 and 7 teaspoons a day.
It is sugar not the salt that may be the actual causative factor for high blood pressure. ~ Dr James DiNicolantonio in the American Journal of Cardiology.
Exercise helps too ~ an hour of walking a day is enough to help reduce blood pressure. Walking to work reduces stress and improves brain power, according to the University of East Anglia’s Norwich Medical School.
307 YEARS OF UNION COULD BE SCRAPPED
There is a strong possibility that Scotland will vote to leave the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland on Thursday September the 18th. This dismemberment will end 307 years of union and throw Scotland and the rest of the United Kingdom into political and economic chaos. What is truly remarkable is that if Scotland does vote Yes in the Independence Referendum is that the split will be handled in a civilised manner with none of the internecine armed conflict which usually accompanies the break-up of nations.
The Queen would remain Head of State, unless at sometime in the future Scotland turns itself into a republic. The Union Flag would have to change. The BBC would no longer be collecting the arcane Television Licence Fee in Scotland, and could well reduce or scrap its transmissions in Scotland. Not being a member of the European Union, citizens of Scotland would have no automatic right of domicile in England. The matter of policing across the border would also need to be agreed.
A break-up of the United Kingdom would be disastrous for current Prime Minister David Cameron, it is likely he would be forced to resign. Scottish independence would destroy the chances of the Labour Party ever winning a majority at Westminster for a generation, and would throw Scotland’s international political relationships into turmoil. If there is a Yes vote Scottish independence would be formally declared some 18 months later, sometime in 2016. This would solve the West Lothian question at a stroke.
For example; would an independent Scotland wish to become a member of NATO, what would happen to Scotland’s relationship with the European Union, what about Scotland’s relationship with the United States? No doubt the mandarins in Whitehall and Edinburgh have contingency plans in place to deal with these issues. No doubt those plans will not survive the first day of Scottish Independence.
The best-laid schemes o’ mice an’ men, Gang aft agley, An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain, For promis’d joy! Robert Burns, To a Mouse
The Treasury and the Bank of England have stated in the clearest possible terms that Scotland would not be able to continue using the Pound Sterling as their national currency, while Alex Salmond, (leader of the Scottish National Party), says that yes Scotland will continue to use the pound. This is a case of neither side being particularly honest.
There is nothing to stop Scotland from continuing to use the pound, but they would thereby be unable to set their own interest rates, and would have little say in their own macro-economic policy. The Treasury in London and the Bank of England would effectively run the Scottish economy. In addition, if Scotland does join the European Union they would be required to adopt the Euro and would have even less economic independence. Scotland has only half the population of basket-case Greece, and about the same Gross Domestic Product. Scotland would also be liable for its portion of the UK National Debt, reneging on that would destroy Scotland’s international credit ratings.
Scottish Banks are filling up their cash machines in case of a rush to withdraw money if there is a Yes vote on Thursday. Senior banker are concerned there may be a run on their banks if Scotland votes for independence. Five Scottish banks also have contingency plans in place to move their headquarters to London, allegedly ~ Lloyds, Royal Bank of Scotland, Clydesdale, TSB and Tesco Bank. The Bank of England will remain regulator and lender of last resort to Scottish Banks until independence is formally declared.
Scotland has a disproportionate importance in the United Kingdom’s armed forces. Alex Salmond does not want nuclear weapons in Scotland, which would mean the United Kingdom’s ballistic nuclear submarine force would have to move from its current base at Faslane on the Gare Loch. The route around the North of Scotland into the Atlantic is of vital importance to the United Kingdom ~ it is unlikely that Scotland could defend that with it’s planned military expenditure of £2.5 billion per annum. A significant proportion of the United Kingdom’s army is made up of Scottish Regiments, and under Scotland’s defence plans three of these are likely to go ~ The Black Watch, Royal Highland Fusillers and The Highlanders.
The Scots would like to have 12 Typhoon supersonic jets, six Hercules transport aircraft, Chinook helecopters, two fully armed Type 23 Frigates, two offshore patrol vessels and four anti-mine vessels. These would have to be transferred from the current strength of the UK’s armed forces.
These reductions to the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force and the British Army would have a major impact on the UK’s defensive capability. Our capability to defend the British Isles will be diminished and the Scots won’t have the ability either. We’d all lose out. This is very damaging. Lord West, former head of the Royal Navy.
Scotland would also need its own secret services. On independence Scotland would lose the services of MI5, MI6, and GCHQ, and there is no guarantee that Scotland would be able to rely on the cooperation of the American agencies, who apparently view Scotland with deep suspicion following the release of the Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset al-Megrahi. It seems likely that both Britain and America would spy on an Independent Scotland.
The future Scottish economy would be heavily dependent on North Sea Oil and Gas, (which is running out), and green energy in the form of wind turbines, (and anybody who thinks they can make that cost effective is deluding themselves). At present Scotland lives on subsidies from the English Taxpayer.
Alistair Darling, who is heading the No campaign says that there are still 500,000 voters who haven’t yet made up their minds. Given the resentment most Scots have for the English, I wouldn’t bet on their voting No.
Seems that I will not be around for a couple of weeks.
Nor will I be checking for messages.
As my mind is as empty as the chair, there is no point in anyone trying to contact me.