Wherever I go, I always find that special person who is so wrong for me.
In the world’s largest financial centres, I spent most of my career making a hell of a lot of money by exploiting my knowledge of people and what makes them tick. In London, Paris, New York, and Chicago I learned to read people, and know what they really want, need, and desire. My skill was in matching the things I could do with what my clients thought they wanted. And, for a long while, I was the acknowledged world expert in my field of esoteric banking. But, really, my success was all due to the way I could use my interpersonal skills.
If I am so skilled at the art of interpersonal relationships, how come I can get it so wrong with women? Some of the time I am forceful, passionate, prideful, self-indulgent, sensual, lustful, and too warm towards women who possess grace, beauty, and charm. If I am very attracted to a woman I can be far too liberal with my affection, compassion, time, love, and money. I tend to do a little too much by way of extravagances, and luxuries. Maybe I send flowers too often. And, as you would expect, sometimes these women take everything I can give without the slightest show of gratitude, appreciation, or affection in return.
A fool and his money are soon parted, especially when it comes to affairs of the heart. ~ Thomas Tusser
Obviously I am not doing the right things, in the right way, at the right time, with the right person. There isn’t the right balance, or sense of equilibrium. And there’s the rub ~ we don’t choose who we fall in love with.
Something tells me that self-confidence, strength, and passion are a heady mixture which is not always under my control ~ I often let my emotions run away with me, and this can only lead to loneliness and heartache.
My past has been marred by decisions I made that have left me feeling disappointed and bitter. It’s important for me to remember that I am accountable for my decisions. What I need to do is reflect on those past choices in a frank and healthy way, without looking at the past through rose-coloured glasses, or sugar coating the choices I made in error. I have made many bad choices, which then turned out very differently from the way I had hoped.
At times this has caused me much pain, worry, wasted time, and wasted money. Perhaps I fool myself that I always tried to do my best, and that I always had good intentions at heart ~ but I don’t think so. I did my best with the cards Life dealt me, but somehow things always took unexpected turns.
There may have been doubts in my heart which I ignored. I was careless, and not always honest with myself. I have often acted impulsively, with utter disregard for the consequences. I have had the feeling of being utterly out of my depth, and I usually pressed on regardless.
Some say that we can only learn by our own mistakes. And, that we don’t fail by falling down, we fail by staying down. All I know is that I’ve made some bloody painful mistakes.
If there’s nothing much about sex in the paragraphs I’ve written above ~ that’s because usually there hasn’t been any.
Exactly the sort of woman I should have never been involved with. Great legs do not necessarily a nice person make.
Never look to another to tell you who you really are.
A friend of mine has said that I need some form of mental health / spiritual counselling ~ suggesting to me that she thinks there’s something seriously wrong with the way I feel, think, act, and react to events and people. I guess she believes that I don’t feel, think, act, or react in ways that she likes when it comes to my friendship with her.
I thought about this a lot and very seriously. I am fully aware that I don’t follow normal rules of behaviour, especially when it comes to interpersonal relationships, and I also know there are, (at least), a couple of reasons for this.
Something happened to me deep in my early childhood, so far back that I don’t know exactly what happened to me when I was maybe 3 years old. But whatever happened had a very profound effect on me, sufficient to change my personality for my whole life. It’s complicated, but various mental-health types have said a couple of things; #1 I don’t have bipolar disorder, and #2 I may have had borderline personality disorder, but if I had I’ve recovered. Well, that’s helpful….. or not. The practical upshot of whatever happened when I was a young child is that I will not willingly accept advice, criticism, or chastisement. So what? That just puts me in line with 99% of the rest of the crazy people on this planet.
The second reason I don’t follow normal rules of behaviour is because I’m better than that. I’m enlightened, truthful, open, ethical, grounded, and fucking smart. And to be honest, with the exception of the people who follow me on this blog, that makes me a better man than anyone any of us is likely to meet in an average day.
So, I thought about this very carefully when it came to finding a therapist / counsellor / spiritual adviser….. and decided that wasn’t going to happen.
I’ve spent the greater part of the past 2, 3, or maybe 4 years trying to walk the warrior’s path. Trying to find out who I am, who I was, and who I wish to be. And now, after years of effort, I’m finally beginning to see some light.
It may just be a candle in a hurricane of hellish darkness, but that small light is me.
The little boy may have become a broken man, with a broken spirit and broken dreams, but today I can hold on and today I’m feeling strong. I know who I am, and I’m not a shadow or the man in the mirror anymore.
No over-qualified, well-intentioned, mental health wazzock is going to be given my permission to dip their dirty fingers into my soul. There is no chance of me attending therapy / counselling / psychotherapy. Not now, not next year, not ever.
It turns out that I know who I am, and I like who I am. And, those that don’t can fuck off. Don’t let the door hit you on the way out, and please don’t keep in touch.
Some say that humility is the true key to success. And, that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. All I know is that I’ve tried humility and therapy, and all I got was insanity.
I have a new plan of action concerning my supposed need for counselling. I am happy to take no action whatsoever.
Marmaduke is as sick of misplaced and unwanted advice as I am.
Knowledge, intuition, and self-confidence aren’t always enough.
Yesterday I reacted very badly to what I felt was negative criticism, from a very close friend, of some posts I had recently written. I took the critical comments from my friend both personally and probably more negatively than she meant to sound. And yet, looking back, I still feel that her comments about my blog were a thinly veiled attack on me, which was really about something else entirely, something else I had done. It would be nice to know what…..
Yesterday, I broke two of my own rules;
Rule #9 Trust in your own opinions, but always be prepared to listen to the other person’s point of view.
Rule #10 Be accepting, understanding, and compassionate.
It’s all very well my not liking what people do or say, but I should have the wisdom and courage to accept and understand that her thoughts and opinions are not my thoughts and opinions. I should be able to rise above the shit that life and other people throw at me from time to time. I should not be dragged down into the mire by other people. I should make a better choice than to feel so hurt and distressed by the things others may say to me.
If a man is going to let his spirit truly fly then he needs the self-confidence to spread his wings. Sometimes a man also needs wisdom to make better decisions and wiser choices if he is going to realise his potential and manifest his true destiny. If he is going to walk the warrior’s path to spiritual prosperity and inner peace, then a man needs to walk that path without scepticism, fear, or self-doubt.
I know that things do not get better overnight, that this is going to be a step by step, iterative process, and that to make positive changes in my life I first of all have to show up for life and actually have the courage to make some changes. Not every choice I make is going to be a good choice, but a golden rule is that if things aren’t working out, then do something else instead.
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. ~Einstein
I also have some new tools to help me; I am learning the power of truth, mindfulness, self-care, meditative affirmations and mandalas. I know that I need to show more gratitude and care through my actions for those who matter most to me ~ including myself. I know I need to listen to the guidance of those who care for me because they can show me the path I need to take. I know that I shouldn’t listen when others are attacking me out of their own personal inadequacies.
There needs to be new challenges, new rituals, and new guidelines in my life. I need to ask a lot of myself, and of those close to me, but I need to be patient, mindful, and caring too.
To make wise choices I need to consider the past, the present, the future, and look at potentialities with some wisdom and reasonableness. What I need to lose is anger, bitterness, judgementalism, and paranoia.
I have made some changes, and taken some decisions. I’ve joined a different gym, and I’m going there and exercising regularly. I’m going to the pool regularly. I walk everywhere, I’ve changed my diet, and I’m getting better rest and sleep. I am going to travel more, I’ve just got back from Turkey, and in a little while I’m going to Crete. After that, well if you can’t find me, I’m on vacation.
Some say that there are wonderful, warm, loving, powerful, indulgent, and courageous energies in the universe. And, that all men seek and desire; love, happiness, grace, beauty, charm, and pleasure. All that I know is that I have to act quickly to find my true life path.
The Best is yet to come ~ I may have seen the sun but I’ve never seen it shine, and now it’s raining in my heart.
the road is long, and mostly lonely
The best luck of all is the luck you make for yourself.
In the past couple of weeks I have had the fabled luck of a sailor being followed by an albatross, (never, ever, shoot the albatross). Something has carved out a window to let me see who I truly am, and allowed me to start to take control of my fate. But, it’s also enabled me to surrender to the will of the cosmos ~ working with natural energies to empower my body, mind, and spirit to true and lasting enlightenment.
I shot the ALBATROSS…..
I had done a hellish thing, and it would work ’em woe: for all averred I had killed the bird, that made the breeze to blow. ~ Samuel Taylor Coleridge
These changes in me are never going to be some quick way to amass a fortune, (I don’t need to), or find an easy way out of life’s problems. Instead, taking control of my fate allows me to discover the interconnectedness of all things that binds us and the cosmos together, and creates the web of infinite circumstances, places, and people that allows me to walk the warrior’s path.
You know what? I am excited about all this enlightened thinking that seems to have taken over my psyche. However, whatever wisdom or enlightenment I have suddenly gained access to is more than a little bit complicated and confusing for an ordinary Englishman such as I.
I know that this is a positive and strong time of decisive action for me, and I need to harness all the determination I can muster. I firmly believe that, in the next few days I will need to take some action that is critical to the shape of my future. The snag is, right now I have no idea what that action is supposed to be. I’ve got no idea what I most need to do, except that it’s going to be a balancing act between passion and practicality.
So, I’m already working on my general health and fitness ~ walking everywhere, breathing plenty of clean and fresh sea air, and detoxifying my life of crap and negative influences.
I have a feeling that I also need to work on better friendships and more meaningful and mindful connections. I need to give more attention to particular special people in my life. I should build greater self-worth through more integrity, more confidence, better and more authentic interpersonal relationships.
I should be shrewder in my choices of friends and the type of friendships I want, need, and desire. But, being a shrewd operator does not mean that I would ever be underhand or less than utterly honest about how I nurture my friends and friendships, or be dishonest in how I choose the people I wish to associate with.
Some say that communication skills is an art we go on learning throughout our life. And, that interpersonal relationships never stop being a work in progress. All I know is that sometimes we only say to others what we ourselves need to hear.
Sometimes a man just has to howl at the moon.
just remember, interpersonal relationships can be dark….. and as deep and strange as still waters.
And, choices rule your life.
To really live, first escape from the prison you made for yourself.
Some change, some significant shift in the way I think and feel has allowed me to better understand the infinite intricacies of life, to see my true inner self, and consequently gain a much greater self-awareness and feeling of self-confidence.
I firmly believe that I can now rise above the obstacles and pit-falls of this crazy chaotic life in a determined and assertive way. I know that I can follow the warrior’s path to happiness and genuine fulfillment. Quite suddenly and unexpectedly, there is a forceful and innovative energy bubbling away in the depths of my subconsciousness. Taken together this means that, since my return from a weird vacation in Turkey, I have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to strike out on my own, to feel confident and liberated, in control of what is happening in my own life.
I have always had a great deal of financial freedom, but emotionally and spiritually I have been utterly repressed, a prisoner of my own inadequacies and the negativity of others. Now I need to engage my true strengths and inner abilities ~ I guess working out how to do that may take a little longer than I think.
I have always had a strong character and a strong will, but always seemed to be afraid of leaving the well established fortress of my comfort zone. I believe that I am no longer fearful of releasing my strong will and doing things quite differently from other people.
In my life it’s been much easier to follow the flow of everyone else, but that route will never allow anyone to reach their destiny and discover their own ultimate truth. It seems now is the time for me to become more of a leader, and less of just another sheep in the flock,
Perhaps it really is time for me to break free of the limitations I have created for myself, and others have created for me, by trying to conform to what I think I ‘should’ be doing. You can please some of the people most of the time if you do what they want, but no matter what you do, you can’t please all your family and friends all of the time.
To begin with, my new and different attitude felt rebellious and disrespectful, but I now know that if I don’t dare to be different, I will never realise just how much I can enjoy This Life.
Some say that you only get one chance to remake your life into what you have always wanted it to be. And, that everyone who is close to you will do everything they can to stop you from breaking away. All I know is that I can and will do just what my destiny calls me to do.
I am no longer a prisoner, I am a free man.
sometimes all you need is a very cool car
Life has many ways of testing a man’s will and inner strength.
Yesterday I joined a different gym here in my little seaside town. I had not been regularly using the ‘old gym’, and they had increased their prices. Often the walk there, around the marina, was so interesting and distracting that I never made the gym at all.
I’m pretty surprised that I just went ahead and joined a new gym, without hesitation, procrastination, or much thinking about it. But then, since my recent vacation in Turkey, I’m a changed man. In Turkey I had a bit of an epiphany.
I know that I’m now venturing on yet another important evolutionary step on the warrior’s path to discover what I am truly capable of, and I have come to know that I have an immense inner strength. Part of my journey along the warrior’s path is knowing what this inner strength and power is, and how I can use it, for the greater good, in my daily existence.
You have power over your mind ~ not outside events. Realise this, and you will find strength. ~ Marcus Aurelius
My goal is to unearth and understand this power and strength from the depths of my subconscious mind, my heart, and my soul. I have something to say and I need to learn how to say it. Perhaps I need to break away from traditional approaches and practices and accept that I am now a unique individual that deserves to receive more recognition and respect for who I have worked so hard to become.
As I was taking my leave from the new friends I had made on vacation, a very together lady said to me that; ‘You are a very different kind of man from most…..’ She said that and more in a very caring way.
However, right now I still do not feel as fully in charge of my own destiny as I could be. I know that I need a clearer vision of what lies ahead of me. I need to work towards more balance, acceptance, understanding. I need courage. I need to use my new-found self-awareness, self-confidence, inspiration and motivation. And, I need to eliminate negative energies and negative people from my life.
I know, trust, and believe that I am capable of forging my own path, that I have a manifest destiny to reach, a destiny that is not intended for anyone else, at least for no one who cannot share my vision, needs, wants, dreams, and desires.
It is time to explore my dreams and to experiment with the strength and power I suddenly possess. I need to become connected with who I really am, and I need to better connect with those I care for. I want and need to become the real Renaissance Man that some have thought I have always been. Until now I believe that I have always fallen short of that ideal.
Some say that we take for granted those things that are most deserving of our attention. And, that most people never show up for their Appointment with Life. All I know is that Real Life is what happens to you while you are busy making pointless plans.
Marmaduke likes to sunbathe on one of the historic ships moored in the marina
Inner tranquility ~ freedom from anger, anxiety, and fear.
There was something weird about my short stay in Turkey. Was it the place, or the people, or the blue, blue sky? Was it getting enough good sleep, good food, staying sober, staying calm? Or, was it the long, meaningful, and mindful conversations I enjoyed? Or was it some inner spirituality that was awoken in me? I suspect all of these things and more combined to wrought a significant change in my psyche.
For me this was a jumping-off point. I lost some things, I lost negativity, I lost the way I was used to seeing the world, I lost judgmentalism, I lost my mistrust of others, I lost my fear and anger, and I learned how to fly…..
Last night I lost the world, and gained the universe. ~ C. JoyBell C.
I had not been there long before I knew a radical freedom that allowed me to seek acceptance, humility, integrity, mindfulness, and understanding of myself, of those around me, and of those I care for. I was encouraged to take a new control and responsibility for my own life ~ I believe that most of us, (up to and including me), are not in control of our own lives. Rather most of us drift aimlessly through life, so that today is pretty much like yesterday, and tomorrow will be pretty much like today.
That isn’t really living, it’s just existing, and that’s no way to explore true happiness and well-being. To know true happiness and well-being we perhaps should strive to improve and enhance our own lives, the lives of those we care for, and society as a whole.
Within the real meaning of human happiness and enhanced existence, within our aims, significance, and overall purpose, we all have the freedom to choose what to do, to be who we want to be. Sadly so many of us never even try to grow into an enlightened being.
After a couple of days in the mindfulness of my Turkish vacation I began to seek to understand things, to understand the interconnectedness of all things, and the ways to find the significance of my own life among the chaos.
The real meaning of enlightenment is to gaze with undimmed eyes on all darkness. ~ Nikos Kazantzakis
I realised that each of us is what we take ourselves to be. But to live in an authentic, caring, and mindful way, we each have to take each situation as it comes and show our true nature through what we do, and not what we say. Talk is cheap.
I was always frightened to show my true nature. I was a shadow man, the man in the mirror, I was always conforming to what others expected of me, putting on masks that fitted the roles I was expected to play. I saw the world through a winter mirror, darkly.
After just one week in a small Turkish hotel, under blue, blue skies, among a group of friendly and supportive people, I was able to throw away the masks, stop playing a role, eschew the man in the mirror, and really take charge of my own life.
Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is Enlightenment. ~ Lao Tzu
Today, back in the garret, I am self-analytical, self-aware, self-confident, and filled with real self-control, and self-discipline.
Now I need to act in a way that reflects my new self-awareness, and the awareness of my own complete freedom. This is what I am, this is what I choose to be, this is the real me, and I will never again dodge responsibility for being true to myself.
I do not pretend to understand how this enlightenment came about. Probably it was a unique set of serendipitous circumstances, a synchronicity that has energised me physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
Some say that once in a lifetime your chance comes along, that once in a lifetime fate deals you the perfect winning hand. And, that we each have to be courageous enough to take that chance, to throw everything we have behind our one great opportunity in Life. All I know is that today I feel better than I have ever felt before in my entire existence.
My short stay in Turkey was the kindling of a flame.
each man is an island unto himself
So I can’t sit own and let the time of my real being take me, for if I try and for a moment can see no direction, cannot tell where I am going, I am filled with panic, scared of emptiness. I am driven and must always look to the far horizons. ~ Joanna Field
For most of my life it seemed that I was afraid of still serenity, uncomfortable of just having nothing to do, and having to make no plans. I seemed to be happiest if there was a great deal going on around me, as though I was in the midst of a raging storm.
I have come to believe that this was a manifestation of what was going on inside my own mind, that I was driven by a mixture of perfectionism and fear of failure.
My focus seemed to be on what I didn’t have; materially, intellectually, and spiritually. My glass was always half empty, never half full.
Perhaps that was not such a good place to be.
Instead of bemoaning what I don’t have and the things I feel are wrong with my life, I am changing my attitude to celebrate what I do have.
Today I have an infinite number of choices, and they all begin with me having a positive outlook. The decisions I make today will have a direct bearing on how meaningful and mindful my life will be.
I am reminded of some words by Ralf Waldo Emerson; This time, like all times, is a very good one if we but know what to do with it.
Today I will try to do some good and mindful things with my time.
Today I will be peaceful amid the storms.
If you confidently believe in yourself, you can do anything.
Sometimes our lives can suck, and having a life filled with problems and pain can leach any self-confidence you ever had right out of you. But, without self-confidence we are useless in life. Without self-confidence we become diffident, hesitant, inward-looking, and pretty crappy at everything we might try to do. Without self-confidence we worry, fret, and fail.
In fact, without self-confidence we may not want to do anything at all, just in case it all goes badly wrong. Not doing, not turning up for life, sitting alone and lonely in your own space ~ well that becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy and destroys whatever vestige of confidence you may have had left.
Remember this truth; To be good at what you do, you first have to do.
Self-confidence is a skill, and like any other skill it can be learned, and relearned. Fear of failure is a skill, stop learning and relearning it.
Each time we face our fear, we gain strength, courage, and confidence in the doing. ~ Theodore Roosevelt
The road towards true self-confidence has only a few steps along the way.
- Know who you are. Self-awareness is something we should all work at, and the more you work at it, the more you will know your true self. Hey, I know exactly who I am, my name is Jack Collier.
- Be comfortable and happy with who you are ~ and if you’re not happy with yourself, then work at changing yourself to be a better version of you. Lose that weight, exercise and get fitter, spend time on personal grooming, dress well in clothes that flatter you, go back to school….. The only person we can really change is ourselves.
- Be OK with what you do. So your job sucks, and the people at work treat you like shit, so look for a better and better-paid job. You owe no loyalty whatsoever to the people you work for, nor the people you work with. Don’t just quit your job, instead use your time at work and their facilities as assets in your job-search. Better still, start working for yourself. The really successful people in life are never wage-slaves.
- Be cool with where you are heading. You may not even know where you’re going, but go somewhere. The longest journey begins with the first baby steps, and you won’t know if you’re going in the wrong direction if you’re going nowhere. I know where I’m going ~ for a start I’m going to leverage this JackCollier7 blog into a best-selling self-improvement book.
- Do not ever give up after one failure. In fact, do not accept failure. Everybody fails from time to time, mostly because other people aren’t smart enough to see just how good you really are. JK Rowling, the best selling author of the Harry Potter books, was turned down by 12 publishers before Bloomsbury picked up the rights to her first manuscript for just £1,500. Today JK Rowling is worth around $1 billion.
- Remember that nobody will believe in you unless you believe in you. If you don’t believe in yourself, then act like hell and fake self-belief.
- Remember that life is filled with opportunities and choices, never stop looking and learning to find the opportunities that enhance your self-belief, self-confidence, self-worth, and self-empowerment. The more choices you have, the more self-motivated you will become.
You are the Captain of your own ship, and you are the master of your fate, so step up and impress yourself, impress everyone around you, and if they aren’t utterly impressed by the new self-confident you, then move on because it’s their loss, not yours.
Some say that before embarking on anything new, you must first believe that you can do it. And, that you must honestly ask yourself if whatever you’re going to do will work. All I know is that I ask myself if it’s going to be worth it.
always be open, honest, and self-aware
you can’t get to the moon if you don’t try
You can never get away from where you’ve been.
We cannot change the past, we can only change the ways feel think and feel about the past. Most people have brutal, painful, and regrettable memories of their past. Events from the past have created who we are today, and events from the past will affect us today, tomorrow, next week, next year, and maybe until the day we die and beyond…..
Some of us may say that we are OK with the past, that things that happened in our childhood and adolescence do not haunt us at all. But beware, even if you are not aware of it, everything that you have experienced in the past; good, bad, terrible, traumatic, joyful, boring….. is affecting your sub-conscious today.
Nobody, up to and including you and me, is completely at peace with their past. We cannot, and should not, forget the past. Our past creates in us feelings of anxiety, bitterness, disappointment, doubt, guilt, fear, frustration, hurt, regret, rejection, sadness….. and most of us recall and remember the negatives from our past more than we focus on the positives.
Those who forget the past are condemned to repeat it. ~ Chuck Palahniuk
Some of us try to run away from our past; changing where we live, drifting from one relationship to another, changing jobs, drinking too much, taking drugs, attempting suicide, and metaphorically running away to join the circus. But none of that running away ever works, for wherever we go we take the past with us. (Even if a suicide attempt fails it will most likely do irreparable damage to the body, mind, and spirit.)
For some of us it’s even worse, because we are also affected by the past of someone who is very close to us, and emotions created by someone else’s past are incredibly difficult to deal with. This is doubly so if our ‘friend’ hasn’t themselves fully come to terms with their own past.
To be cool with the past we must first be motivated to deal with the past. We need to understand what really happened in the past, not just some biased half-memories that we use to fuel our negative emotions today. Try to find out what really happened in the past. Be willing to talk about and fully explore issues from the past. Stop pretending that everything from the past is fine, when most likely it isn’t. Acknowledge your true feelings, whether they be loss, hurt, shame, anger…..
You can accept or reject the way you are treated by other people, but until you heal the wounds of your past, you will continue to bleed. ~ Iyanla Vazant.
Depending how deeply the past affects us, we may need help to come to terms with what happened, how it affected us, and who we are today because of the past. Speaking to family and friends may help, you may need to see your doctor or a therapist, you may talk with your priest or spiritual adviser, you may need something like hypnosis, or you may just need to really meditate, read inspirational books, listen to motivational lectures, or just go for a long walk in the sunshine.
With any luck we may find out that the past is better than we feared. But, no matter if the past is better or worse than we think we remember, we cannot move on from something we don’t understand and we refuse to accept.
That’s the past for you. Not only does it come back at the most unexpected and inconvenient times, but it’s set in stone. ~ Jeffery Deaver.
There may well be things from the past that need resolution. This might be very difficult, but the longest journey starts with the first baby-step. Be honest. Be self-aware. Be kind with yourself. Seek to understand yourself. Be kind and understanding towards others. And, give yourself time to heal.
A ship does not sail with yesterday’s wind. ~ Louis L’Amour
Some say that we can become cool with the past by keeping a positive outlook and a strong determination to succeed in finding joy instead of negative emotions. And, that the past only exists in our memories and imagination. All I know is that the past isn’t actually here.
If what you’re doing isn’t working,
then do something else instead.