Ocean travel without a boat

Journal of Peter Greenwell

Month: Jan 2017 (page 1 of 2)

Thirty days of gratitude – day eight

What book am I most grateful for? The Time Machine. Without which, I never would’ve started creative writing.

Thirty days of gratitude – day seven

What memory am I grateful for? The mere fact that I can recall anything at all.

Thirty days of gratitude – day six

What in nature am I grateful for? Heavy rain at the end of a hot day. The scent of jasmine or mock orange of an evening. The seeming permanence of the stars in the sky.

Thirty days of gratitude – day five

What sound am I grateful for? My wife telling me she loves me.

Thirty days of gratitude – day four

What kind of food am I grateful for? Mangosteens, but I don’t get enough of them.

Thirty days of gratitude – day three

What colour am I grateful for? Not sure if there is any, but I’ll settle for red and black. How’s that?

Thirty days of gratitude – day two

What piece of technology am I grateful for? The Internet of course, without which I wouldn’t be bringing you this.

Thirty days of gratitude – day one

Something intriguing I found on Pinterest. This intrigue wants you to feel grateful for something different for the next thirty days. Today I am to be grateful for something I smelled. That would be the wood spice incense I burned earlier in the day.

30 days of gratitude

Gratitude onward

A revelatory book explored

A self-help book

The light bulb came on

If How-To’s Were Enough We Would All be Skinny, Rich and Happy – Brian Klemmer

I’ll be the first to admit that this post’s title would most likely fail SEO critiquing. On the plus side, it can certainly not be described as clickbait. No 10 reasons for blah blah here.

Anyhow, onward and upward. Some time back, my local library had a sale, disposing of excess inventory. I bought about 15-20 books for the princely sum of $10 Australian. A few were fiction, but most were non-fictional works on topics that I possess a passing interest in (at the least). This book was one of them. The title itself was intriguing, as I’ve sat and glossed over quite a few how-tos in my day, on a wide variety of subjects – including personal improvement.

This one is short at 149 pages, divided into ten chapters including an epilogue. Each of these chapters cover themes and concepts that could easily stand on their own, though there is ample inter-relationship, making this book a cohesive whole.

This book is strongly recommended.

Chapter 1: The secret

The key point of this introductory chapter is that we see things and the world tinted through sunglasses. While wearing these, we are loath to view the world (or anything) in any other colour or hue apart from what these glasses show us. We stubbornly adhere to the ingrained belief that there is nothing beyond this view, and you’re foolish to even try to describe the world in any other terms. So take them off and see what the world truly looks like.

Chapter 2: The Formula of Champions

For me, this chapter was the awakening. The formula to success is Intention + Mechanism = Result. This may well be self-evident to many, but the kicker here is what an intention is. The author argues that people intend to do things at two levels. There’s your stated intention – I’m going to lose weight – but your true intention is – it’s all too hard or it takes too long – therefore the formula collapses before it even starts. I’m proof of this intention vs true intention paradigm, just have a read of the Operation 47 pep talks I’ve posted here.

Once your true intention becomes what you’re truly desiring, then half the battle is won.

Chapter 3: The Key to Relationships

In this chapter, the author discusses the self-destructiveness of what he calls the 3R’s – resentment, resistance and revenge. He asserts that feeling these three emotions is natural. It’s not about avoiding them, but redirecting them into positive energy. Some excellent guidelines are provided to do precisely that.

Chapter 4: Responsibility

This one is self-explanatory. Taking ownership, and having the liberty to make choices.

Chapter 5: To think is to create

This chapter sums up the differences between the conscious and the subconscious. The author asserts that it is pointless to pep yourself up at a conscious level if your subconscious isn’t in line with it. It then discusses visualisation as opposed to imagination. Visualisation of wants and desires aid in realising them. Again, this is a landmark way of seeing things for me, much like what was discussed in Ch. 2. They’re limpid concepts that remain obscured to most people.

Chapter 6: Your vision 

This chapter is about goal-setting and some different ways of approaching them. Short and sweet.

Chapter 7: The power of balance

This is another one of those epiphanous chapters. Here, the reader is asked to visualise, or actually draw, a diagram based on four different aspects of your self (that’s not “yourself”) – physical, emotional, spiritual and mental. Although the author is writing from a Christian point of view, he does stress that spiritual can mean whatever it means to the individual.

These aspects are rated out of ten with one being the least. The object is to balance the four aspects in harmony, without one or more having outliers and thus putting you out of balance.

Chapter 8: Oneness vs separateness 

Discusses how essentially that no human is an island. It goes on to explain that most of us have an ingrained us and them belief regarding others, and the object of this chapter is to remove this and become inclusive with those you formally excluded (mentally or otherwise). By doing this, life comes win-win for all concerned, rather than win-lose or lose-lose.

Chapter 9: an action attitude…first day, last day

How not to burden yourself with unwarranted fears and the like. Dreams are easier and simpler to achieve if the road ahead is cleared of all foreseeable trouble. Plus it tackles the subject of procrastination by asking you to roleplay your last day, and what would you do and/or achieve before you died at the end of that day.

In other words, there is no moment like now to get things going. See excuses for what they are.

Chapter 10:  Rags to riches…applying the philosophy 

Delves into a case study of an Hawaiian man who makes kites and yo-yos. This chapter is all about achievable goals and the art of goal-setting. Gives a ten point philosophy to make the transition from poor to successful, and most of these points were touched on in previous chapters, particularly win-win and visualisation.

The book then concludes with a summarising epilogue and an exhortation to being faithful and true to yourself while on the to a better life.

The jasmine moon (poetry)

A small piece I conjured up while standing in the driveway


So I was out there minding my own business

A northerly wind flung itself over the fence

Jasmine on its waves

In the lumeniferous ether a near full moon crawled

Perfect strangers imperfectly meshing

It was the smell of little victories akin to olives and privets

Through me and around

The tiny moments of time that fracture the seconds and minutes

A tremor of loveliness

It reinforces the positive longings and makes for endless creation

Amidst the chaos and muddlement

Yes, muddlement is now a word, embrace it as it is a state of mind

Like original people listening to original music

That night with the jasmine was not wasted

Nor was it lived through in a wasteland

It was an inspiration to exult

To take me past the multitude of false starts and aspirations

A floral power cast on a northern wind

So I was out there with no business to mind

A town asleep beyond the wall

The full moon blots out the stars

Careering along the ecliptic, inclined and inexorable

I came back in, in no rush

And the scent steers off into eternity

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