first of all stop being a willing victim
if that’s you then perhaps you need to change
The first step in my total makeover plan New Age ~ New Me is giving up alcohol; or to say it a better way Living a Sober Life. If you misuse and abuse any substance; alcohol, drugs, prescription medication, over the counter medication, sugar, tobacco….. then your life revolves around that and it’s almost impossible to do anything else that matters a damn. And trust me, if you drink, smoke, or take drugs ~ then whatever you think or believe you are an addict. The same goes if you gamble, are promiscuous, steal, cheat, lie….. you are an addict and a victim of your own need for instant gratification.
If you ever want to be better, to become self-aware, self-controlled, self-disciplined, empowered, and truly happy, then first of all you have to give up your addictions. No that’s not true, first of all you truly have to admit to yourself that you have a problem. Only when you really believe that you need to give up hanging around in bars, or drinking a bottle of wine at home every night, or smoking a pack of cigarettes a day can you begin to become a better version of yourself.
And giving up isn’t easy. For years I was a binge-drinker ~ every time I got upset, unhappy, or dissatisfied I would retreat into a bottle of booze to make myself feel better. It never worked. And yet I haven’t touched a drop since Christmas last year.
Here’s how did I did that;
- I came to believe that booze was ruining my life.
- I made a decision to stop drinking alcohol.
- I stopped buying and drinking booze.
It was an instant decision followed by instant action; and I believe that it has to be that way. There has been no help, no 12 step group, no counselors, no complicated programs, no tricks, no searching the internet to find an easy way to be sober, no anything ~ just me and some self-discipline. It’s easy; decide to stop whatever destructive behaviour gives you instant gratification, and then stop.
Except we know that it isn’t easy at all ~ it’s fucking hard.
But what would I rather become? A drooling incontinent who lives just for the next drink? Or a self-aware Renaissance Man who lives a very full and rewarding life?
So, every hour of every day I stay away from that first drink.
the things you think you like the most
are the things that will ruin your life
and then kill you
you get nothing without hard work
hanging out in bars is self-destructive
It was my birthday a couple of days ago ~ another year older and deeper into lockdown. Given the premise that this is a new age for me I’ve decided to give myself a complete makeover. And I mean doing it all for myself because there’s nobody to do it for me ~ and anything someone else does for you never lasts. Any real and beneficial change I want to make has to come from within.
This makeover will be directed at significant improvements of my body, mind, emotions, and spirit. It’s also going to include looking better and having a much nicer, kinder, more effective, and more likable persona.
The truth is that I started this big self-improvement programme just after Christmas when I gave up alcohol. If you drink, smoke, take drugs, gamble, or suffer from any of the other life-destroying addictions, then the first step on any self-improvement / self-development / makeover is to quit your addiction(s). And trust me, if you do drink, smoke, take drugs, (including stuff like Xanax), or gamble ~ then you are addicted. (The list of life-destroying things people can become addicted to is long and inclusive.)
My plan for becoming the very best version of Jack Collier that I can possibly be is very simple;
- stay away from alcohol
- have a good daily exercise routine
- eat and drink healthily, (mine is a Paleo / Mediterranean diet)
- get enough good sleep, retire and rise at the same time every day
- cut out a lot of mindless, time-wasting stuff; TV, internet, social media
- look as good as I can all the time; bathed, shaved, hair, decent clean clothes
- study and learn interesting challenging stuff, from proper books by real writers
It should be easy, given some self-discipline and determination.
none of this crap
who could like that guy?
first of all stop dicking around
Not so long ago I was miserable, irritable, and utterly ineffective. I didn’t ever leave the garret, except to buy booze, I never spoke to anyone, and I didn’t do anything interesting. Every day was the same as the day before. I was sick in body, mind, and spirit. From time to time I had dark suicidal thoughts. Even though my life was a mess, it was a mess with an efficient daily routine behind it. I was very good at doing nothing except wasting the time I had on this earth.
There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all. ~ Peter Drucker
There are lots of ways and a myriad of techniques that I could have used to turn my life around, but before everything else I had to have the strong and unshakable desire to change myself and make my life better. No Fairy Godmother was going to appear and make everything all right. I wasn’t suddenly going to find an attractive woman who would give me the magical motivation to improve myself and my life. Nothing good happens in life unless we make it so.
You can start to read lots of books, sign up for lots of expensive courses, and find tons of stuff on the internet that will say; ‘change your life around by following this advice’ ~ and they are all utterly useless unless first you have the willingness and determination to change. Changing your life for the better takes every hour of every day of the rest of your life. Being a better person needs willpower, and if you don’t have any willpower then create an unbreakable routine towards becoming the very best version of yourself you can possibly be. If you can’t do that, then fake it to make it.
First of all I had to decide what I didn’t want. What were the very worst things in my life. What was I doing that was negative and self-destructive? Think about it ~ what are the very worst things in your life? What do you want the least? What is killing you? For me that began with agoraphobia and booze. I had to stop drinking, and I had to get out of the garret, physically, mentally, and emotionally I had to get out of this place.
None of this was easy, but this blog is some small evidence of how far I’ve come since those dark days.
If I can become a better person, then you can too.
you don’t need a gym to exercise effectively
women need and desire to be cherished, understood, loved
men want sex
Men evolved as solitary hunters, and their main contribution to the human race was the ability to hit a moving target so that everybody could eat. Sometimes several men from the same tribe gathered together as a cooperative team so they could kill something bigger so that more people could eat.
Any woman reading that will immediately see where the male fascination with sports comes from. Sports are all about the ability of one man to hit a moving target, often with the help of the other players on his team. Cricket, baseball, football, basketball ~ lady, you name it and it’s the same thing ~ personal responsibility, hand-eye coordination, spacial awareness, calmness under pressure, hitting a moving target, instant gratification, win / lose. And it comes from tens of thousands of years of evolution.
This is one reason why men like to wear uniforms, hats, colours, insignia that indicates their personal competence and membership of a successful team. Teams are not discussion groups, a sports team is really a hunting and killing machine. Every man feels that he is perfectly capable of solving his own problems and does not see any reason to talk about them with anybody else; up to and including you. This is the reason a man will never ask for directions ~ real men do not use in-car satellite navigation because the damn woman keeps on offering advice.
Nowhere in there does it say anything about feelings, discussion, emotion, nurturing, understanding, socialising, and asking for help. Men are not wired to discuss, listen, feel, accept, empathise, or talk just for the sake of talking. Most of the time when a woman really wants her guy to show some empathy and understanding what he will do is offer her a solution. He thinks he is being caring and loving by solving her problems, and she knows he is being uncaring and indifferent, trivialising her feelings by not listening to her.
Actually most good men try to listen to their lady, but what he hears is the blah blah blah of moaning, nagging, complaining, and talking just for the sake of talking.
When men do talk it’s usually in a language women do not easily understand; either because it’s technical or it sounds like monosyllabic grunting.
A woman may dream of and desire a perfect man, but smart women know that ‘perfect man’ is an oxymoron. In many ways her perfect man would be gay, or at least metrosexual ~ and what real woman would want that?
Real men just don’t do non-sexual relationships ~ unless they are prepared to try, try, and try again.
Marmaduke is a male bear
he likes sitting all by himself
thinking about nothing much
always choose the lesser of two evils
cure global warming by setting fire to the sky
The world is going to hell in a handcart, mostly because governments and their unelected officials have responded in a very male, linear-thinking manner to the supposed coronavirus pandemic. They have seen a problem and tackled it with gusto, without any thought whatsoever for the wider consequences. It’s like the man who has an ant infestation in his home and sorts it out by burning down the building. Perfectly logical if your logic is based on Boolean Algebra and the only possible answers are yes and no. That is brutal male thinking taken to extremes. I’m certain that to cure supposed global warming some male scientists would be happy to set fire to the sky.
This highlights the biggest problem that besets most relationships; men think in straight lines and women think in patterns. This is why most men don’t talk much and most women like to talk. It’s also why if there’s a problem in a relationship a man will want to find an immediate solution and most women will want to talk about it. If you don’t understand that then you can’t have a real relationship with the opposite sex ~ all you can have is a deal, a contract, a set of compromises neither of you actually understand. What you have is called a Transactional Relationship.
If you have a transactional relationship it’s most likely suffering right now. Being thrown closely together because of lockdown, or because there is just nowhere to go, means that established positions get blurred and it’s difficult for both of you to fulfill your allotted role. What you might realise is that both of you aren’t actually very happy being together. Or that if you are going to stay together things will have to change.
And, this is where it falls apart. Suppose one of you is now drinking too much. Most people will fall right back into that transactional model; ‘if you stop drinking so much, I will…..’ or the more likely; ‘if you don’t stop drinking so much I’m walking out…..’
You have a Choice of Catastrophes. We can all stay with the shit we have now, or we can set off into the unknown. We can stay with our partner and regret it. We can leave and regret it. We can believe all this COVID-19 crap and have our civil liberties taken away, or we can ignore all the facile advice and instructions thrown at us by governments and health officials and maybe die of the
It’s up to each of us to choose the lesser of two evils ~ but choose wisely.
when in doubt, trust your gut
every man must face his own secret sorrows
the lonely sea and the sky
Normal life is a thing of the past for many of us. Here in England we are in the middle of yet another lockdown. We can’t go anywhere, meet with our friends, enjoy a meal out, or even go to the pub because they’re all shut. In fact, the official guidelines are that we should stay at home unless going out is absolutely essential ~ such as a trip to the doctor, pharmacy, or to buy groceries. It’s the middle of autumn here, it’s turning colder, and yet we are not even supposed to be able to buy a warm jacket or sweater.
The rules and regulations are enforced with varying degrees of enthusiasm by the police, (depending on where you live), neighbour is spying upon neighbour, and supermarkets have grown a crop of security guards to enforce the social distancing and face-mask rules. It’s turned into a Kafkaesque version of 1984. It’s got so that a lot of us English are spending a lot of time alone, locked up in our own homes, solitary.
Being alone for an extended period isn’t necessarily a good thing. Few enjoy solitary confinement, because that’s what lockdown means for many, many people. Days, weeks, and months alone with very little to do can prey upon the mind, make grown men brood and ponder their own inadequacies, make a man face his own secret sorrows and regrets. The ghosts of the past come crowding in, snuffing out the future.
Some feel like throwing it all away, sales of alcohol have soared, and mental illnesses torture some sorry souls. And there is very little help or relief to be found. There is no immediate end in sight either. In England this current lockdown is due to end on December 2nd, but nobody in the real world knows what will happen after that. Prime Minister Boris Johnson probably doesn’t know either because Carrie Symonds hasn’t told him yet.
All a man can do is to keep on keeping on. Find something difficult and intellectual to do. Discover a new creative interest. Look for an idea to get excited about. Think about a new business venture you can do from home. Read something challenging. Don’t just sit there, take some action, put lots of energy and enthusiasm in it. Most of all get outside in the fresh air, walk a few miles and let thoughts drift toward better times.
get outside and enjoy the fresh air
that and sunshine will kill a virus
solitude and isolation are hurtful things beyond human endurance
abandoned and worthless
The first lockdown started here on March 23rd this year, and since then normal human contact has been severely restricted by edict of our governments, health officials, and petty bureaucrats. Here in England we’re a couple of days into yet another lockdown, strictly enforced by the police, covid marshals, and security guards. Some people even believe the lies Boris Johnson is peddling and are self-isolating. Sad buggers.
Whatever way you look at it, for most of this year most of us have been isolated and lonely. I don’t give a
fuck fig how dangerous or not COVID-19 is, being isolated, lacking in the normal warmth of human contact, is very dangerous. Even for hardened and dangerous criminals the United Nations have banned the use of solitary confinement for longer than 15 days, and said that being without human contact for longer than 22 hours a day is unacceptable. And yet, for day after day, month after month, innocent people have been made to suffer a cruel and unusual punishment through no fault of their own.
We don’t heal in isolation, but in community. ~ S. Kelley Harrell
Whether they have the coronavirus or not, people will get sicker and sicker. Many will suffer unimaginable pain, many will die before their time. High blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, malnutrition, a weakened immune system, anxiety, depression. paranoia, cognitive decline, dementia, Alzheimer’s, muscle wastage, alcoholism, attempted suicide…. Death
Other than praying that people like Johnson, Hancock, Vallance, Whitty, et al either come to their senses or burn in hell, what can we do? For a start ignore every lie these disingenuous bastards are peddling. Then change our own mindset.
You are creating your next moment based on what you are feeling and thinking. That is what’s real. ~ Doc Childre
COVID-19 is far less dangerous than an average winter flu ~ and if you don’t believe me spend an hour doing some online research. Your inner potential has no limits. It is up to you to decide how much you want to make of it. You can drift from day to day believing the crap being peddled by governments, health officials, and the mainstream media ~ but you are the captain of your own ship, so take responsibility.
It is high time that we all got back to living a normal life. Get outside in the fresh air, get some exercise, reach out to your friends ~ nobody except yourself can really hold you back from anything.
you can rot on the shore all you want
I will not accept any more lies
don’t waste your life by reinforcing failure
even Marmaduke couldn’t get me to see sense
We all do it. Something isn’t working out so we try harder. We really suck at our job, so we put in more hours. Our relationship is going to hell in a handcart so we pick ourselves up and try again. Our partner stole from us, cheated on us, abused us….. so we forgive them and start over. This is called reinforcing failure, and it’s the biggest mistake anyone can make in Life, Love, and War. And, nobody really understands it.
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again. ~ Robert the Bruce 1314
I was taught that quotation at school, all about the fable of Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, and the spider. A lot of the time it’s very true that if we at first fail at something we should go back and work harder until we succeed. That was certainly true for me at grammar school, where it turned out that I could barely write and certainly couldn’t spell. As the three R’s are the whole basis of modern life I had to work very hard at English and Calligraphy until I became something of a wordsmith.
If there is no choice whatsoever, then we have to keep trying until we succeed. And yet, sometimes no matter how hard we try we are quite likely to waste our lives repeating the same mistake over and over again, because what we are trying to achieve is never going to work. Einstein knew this, and famously said;
The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results. ~ Albert Einstein
If what you are doing isn’t working, then you have to try something else instead. The problem is that people are creatures of habits and routines, who mostly don’t want to leave their own comfort zone. Most people don’t move house, change their jobs, or become of a different church and faith. Not often anyway.
Relationships are different ~ around half of marriages in the USA end in divorce. Some things in relationships are too intolerable to bear. But 80% of divorcees remarry and about 5% remarry their ex. Unless they do something very different in their new marriage then that’s going to turn to dross too.
Me, I spent years trying to make a toxic relationship work, by trying harder…..
Some say that when a relationship isn’t working it’s time to find someone else instead. And that you can’t expect someone to change just to keep you happy. All I know is that, in the relationship I just walked away from, I did the very best I could ~ most of the time.
Einstein also said;
reality is an illusion
albeit a very persistent one
be inspired to think, act, and believe in ways that fulfill your potential
every morning is a new chance to enjoy life
I am not the sum of my past mistakes, nobody is perfect
I am at peace with everything that has happened in my life
I will neither judge myself nor the other people in my life
we each have the power to change our lives for the better
I am good with who I am, and proud of who I am becoming
I can meet each new challenge with fortitude and enthusiasm
my partner is very attracted to me; physically, spiritually, and emotionally
at the end of every day, I know that I will have done the best that I could