Schools are pumping out half-made humans.

It seems to me that the education system is too focused on making a living rather than making a life. There’s always exceptions of course, but generally speaking in at least the standard UK curriculum, schools aren’t incentivised at all to provide education to create well-rounded, happy, healthy, decent human beings. It’s not a priority. What is a priority for them seems to be producing employable consumers.

I don’t think this is the fault of the schools, they are answerable to the government. They HAVE to deliver the required curriculum, or they get backlisted. The government represents us, so it seems within our rights to get the kind of schools we want. The government obviously has it’s own agenda. I don’t understand how they don’t see the following list as super important and include it in the curriculum.

Where will people learn about things such as:

– Self-expression/finding out who you are
– Personal finance (for example student loans and lifetime debt!)
– Mental health
– How mental health and physical health are connected
– How to be a good parent
– How to raise a dog
– How to deal with emotions
– Mindfulness and meditation
– Diet and nutrition
– Critical thinking
– Life fulfilment
– Stress management
– How to run a house
– Relationship communication
– Race issues, gender issues, sexuality
– The importance of play and relaxation
– The importance of time in nature
– The importance of work/life balance
– Spirituality
– Community and cooperation
– Sustainability

Where can we learn this stuff as children if not schools? You can’t rely on parents to teach all this stuff.

It’s all essential stuff. Without the knowledge of these things, decades can be spent trying to correct everything and cause much pain and suffering. It pisses me off.

Maths, science and english are obviously really important, but they won’t help you if you have depression because you didn’t learn about emotional regulation and the importance of work/life balance! No wonder most people are unhappy and dissatisfied with life. (That’s my personal observation and opinion).

Children will grow up to be a part of society, so why doesn’t society give them all the tools they need to be happy, healthy and well-rounded? It’s mutually beneficial to educate them fully so they’re better citizens and better people.

Pupils themselves are pushing for ‘life skills’ to be taught in schools, but there’s more campaigning to be done before it’s in all schools. Holland are ahead of us in lot’s of ways, including teaching mindfulness in schools. Let’s get schools to help make whole humans, not just half one’s! Maybe schools can acquire curriculums from organisations like The Representation Project. 

I think this stuff is worth questioning and thinking about. You know my thoughts. What are yours?

Do you have any thoughts you want to share? Please get in touch at: mindfuelstuff@gmail.com, we’d love to hear from you. If you enjoyed it, help me out and share it so other people can benefit/enjoy it too. Thanks.
 
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Acceptance = liberation

Sorry there’s been a lack of fuel from me recently, but now I’ve quit my job I’ll have more time to dedicate to this blog that I love so much!


“If you find your here and now intolerable and it makes you unhappy, you have 3 options: 1. Remove yourself from the situation, 2. Change it or 3. Accept it totally.” – Michael Singer

I often read/hear that practicing gratitude will put you in good stead for a healthy wellbeing and state of mind.

I’ve tried to do this many times. I think about what I’m grateful for and write it down, and, at the time, I don’t necessarily feel happier for doing so. But, I have felt grateful out of nowhere before; so practicing can only be a good thing. On days that I’m really, really low, when I have no motivation or energy, and where anything but sleeping is too much effort, I find it really hard to practice gratitude.

I realised that maybe it might help me to practice acceptance first: acceptance of my current situation, personality, life, problems, pain and feelings, acceptance of my depression, that I feel like shit right now, that my back is in pain and has been for 5 years, acceptance of the fact I have no motivation or inspiration right now.

I first realised the power of acceptance when shivering in the cold, waiting for the bus. I thought ‘just accept the cold, accept it….it’s okay go on, accept it’, then all of a sudden, I released my fight against the cold and I relaxed and felt a bit warmer for a while. So I’m trying to practice that with more aspects of my life.

I have a constant inner conflict inside that takes a lot of energy, which means I end up unhappy and distracted a lot of the time. In fighting my pain and suffering I’m trying to control one part of myself with another part. I want to feel happy and get rid of these bad feelings, and if fighting it doesn’t work (which it never does) I want to run away and escape myself entirely.

But in rejecting/bullying myself this way, it’s like saying to myself: “Stop feeling down, be happy for god’s sake, what’s wrong with you? There’s no reason you should feel depressed, I wish I wasn’t you and I was someone else, someone happier, I wish I had someone else’s life, not this one.”

If I accept my low feelings, stop fighting them and berating myself, accept that I’m the product of my genes and upbringing, and that I can’t help being depressed, I let go of the grip my mind has on itself and life becomes easier to deal with. I feel more compassion for myself, and feel more liberated and validated.

I think to some people, acceptance seems like giving up, giving in, and the other person or situation has won. But if it’s something you can literally do nothing about, and not accepting it causes you more pain, then maybe accepting it would be a healthier/happier choice for you.

Things to practice fuelling your mind with (easier when you have the mental energy to do it):

Mindfulness (Be mindful of unhelpful thinking styles – more on that in another post).
Acceptance (When you feel down or upset instead of feeling bad and fighting the feeling, try accepting that you feel low, allow yourself space and time to feel how you feel, validate yourself, it’s okay to feel shit right now. If that’s too hard, first try to accept the cold and see if you feel warmer even for a few seconds).
Gratitude (Trying to notice people and things in your life that you’re grateful for regularly, even the smallest of things).

I would love to know if this helps anyone else, try it out and let me know? You can email me at mindfuelstuff@gmail.com


I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought-provoking stuff. If you did enjoy it, help me out and share it so other people can benefit/enjoy it too. Thanks.

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Surviving , existing & burning out vs. living

All about balance
All about balance

So, I haven’t written a blog post in a while, here’s why.

I’ve had the realisation that a lot of my problems are stemming from totally and utter burnout and meltdown, like constantly. There’s many reasons for this like stressful work or too many responsibilities. But also your lifestyle and personality/how you look at the world.

I’ve been unknowingly seeing myself as some sort of robot, able to complete everything that needs doing with no breaks and rest. I have a bit of a serial processor brain, which doesn’t seem to be compatible with how life works, and sometimes I don’t know how to live in this world. It’s bad for my health, relationships, work, life and everything really.

I’m finding it very hard to fit into society’s system. I feel I don’t have enough time to do what I want because of things getting in the way like work, sleep, having to eat, shop, clean, exercise, and do other stuff that needs to be done. I feel like I’m always just existing to complete a never ending load of tasks, chores, lists, responsibilities, duties, obligations and problems to solve. I have an intense need for resolve. I can’t think about anything else until things are done, and out of the way. Only then, can I relax and enjoy myself, but because the list never ends, I never get to that part.

Everything is of equal priority, all urgent and it all needs to have a productive outcome or it’s a “waste of time.” Which is silly because intellectually I know that nothing is a waste of time if you enjoy it. It’s like a never ending addiction, it’s my personality (the analytical thinker). I’m not great at taking care of myself, I kind of see myself as a tool to accomplish goals. I can feel lost on holidays and weekends because there’s nothing to fix or resolve, it’s freedom to do what you want, but I don’t know what to do with that sometimes, if I’m honest, weird I know.

I think I need a better filter, better priorities and to get the rest I need to start with. Everything will become more enjoyable if I do it when I’m in the mood to do it too. I’m guessing this isn’t just me and that the human brain didn’t evolve to process the amount of information we’re fed/bombarded with today and to become achievement machines, the under appreciation of rest in modern society isn’t helping either.

From everything I’ve gathered, read and know, I feel like there’s a big scale where at one end, you have right brain dominated people who can relax, have fun and be in the moment, but if they’re unable to be focused and get things done, they’re at risk from becoming unsuccessful, feeling useless and depressed. Much like my little brother, who’s the opposite to me in this way.

At the other end of the scale you have your left brain dominated people who are productive, focused, determined and successful but if they’re unable to relax and live in the moment, they’re at risk from becoming anxious, stressed, overwhelmed, overworked and burnt out and also depressed.

So my personality informs the way I look at the world and my lifestyle, and my job in the mix means this is what I get. Lovely.

I don’t feel free. Life feels pointless. I feel like I’m just surviving and existing, but not living at all.

Never mind the absolute hell my life is because of this, I also don’t want to be on my death bed thinking “I got a lot of things done”, I want to think ”I had a lovely ride, lot’s of fun, mad experiences, and no regrets.”

My friend said a great thing to me “You do need to enjoy things. Like…you’ll die one day. This is a profoundly unfair FACT. You should squeeze out of life what you want, not what you think you should do.”

Which is great advice, but obviously she doesn’t have my brain, personality, lifestyle and mindset. There doesn’t seem to be any help or support out there that I know of for this, but I’ll do all I can to help myself and others going through the same thing.

Fuel to remember:

– If I feel on the verge of a burnout, stop what I’m doing and rest, cancel plans and remove stress
– Ask myself – does that really need to be done right now?
– Try to live more in the right brain and the moment and give myself a break
– Find balance and you will be more content
– I’ll die one day, so squeeze out of life what I can
– Do what the fuck I want in life, not what I think I should do
– I’m not a machine or robot, I’m a human, and human’s need balance in rest and achievement
– Nothing is a waste of time if I enjoy it
– Meditate daily, exercise 3 times a week
– Find a way to do my passions and have a better work-life balance that I’m happy with

 

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I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought provoking stuff. If you did enjoy it, help me out and share it so other people can benefit/enjoy it too. Thanks.
 
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“Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves.” – Carl Jung

Irritation, like most things will be on a big scale. It seems to me like the more something irritates you, the bigger an issue you have within yourself and this outside irritation is reminding you of that issue subconsciously. In my opinion, it can become a barrier to empathy/connection/understanding.

irritation

I imagine everyone can relate to the feeling of being irritated by someone. For example, I’ve been irritated in the past by someone’s laugh and I didn’t know why. After some thought, I realised it was because the laugh seemed fake and I would like to think I’m the opposite to fake and I would never fake laugh. First of all this is just my perception, that might just be their laugh, to someone else it could even be a pleasing sound. The irritation is in me, interpreted by my reality filter. And the reason is because it offends or contradicts a value of mine. Sometimes it’s not for any deep reason, and it’s just because people are being loud and ignorant at the cinemas.

Irritation, like most things will be on a big scale. It seems to me like the more something irritates you, the bigger an issue you have within yourself and this outside irritation is reminding you of that issue subconsciously. In my opinion, it can become a barrier to empathy/connection/understanding.

The times I learn something new about myself in this instance, are the times I don’t know why I’m irritated by someone and I do some thinking. I don’t like feeling irritated, so I try to notice when I feel irritated and over time become more accepting of others by questioning my sometimes silly reactions.

So it’s a helpful thing to ask yourself, why does this irritate me so much? Do a bit of digging to find out if it’s actually do to with you and not them, and you might be able to work through this issue once you know what it is AND have more compassion for other people as you stop blaming them and accept responsibility for the feelings.

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I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought provoking stuff. What’s your opinion on the subject?

Follow my blog by email on the top right hand side, and get weekly inspiration, videos, quotes and resources on thinking, questioning, growing and learning about yourself, others, life and the world.

What would it be like to live a more liberated existence?

This is Simon Amstell’s live at the BBC ‘Numb’ show, he talks about all sorts of great things, including the part I’m choosing to focus on for this blog post:

He has some astute thoughts on the current human race and society today if he was to leap into the future and look back on us, in this time now. Our human history is full of oppression and close mindedness, and it’s mad to think that in hundreds of years from now we could live more liberated and open-minded lives. (The opposite to many films portrayal of the future like Hunger Games).

“Do you remember when people thought money was the answer, that money would make them happy, ‘If only I could just win the lottery, oh I have won it, oh I spent it all, the problem was internal.’ Remember when we had prisons, when we separated people into cages rather than giving them the love they needed that would have stopped all the crime. What about when religious people fail to remember that God is nature, there’s nothing more all-encompassing or wise than mother nature and athiests forgot that science is the study of nature, and then they both remembered and had amazing sex by a tree. Do you remember when people felt proud of where they came from, like it was something to do with them, it’s just where you happen to fall out of your mother’s vagina. If you’re going to have a flag, have a flag of a vagina, so then you can meet people and go ‘oh hi, where are you from? Oh same as me, let’s be friends.'” – Simon Amstell

In 2014 however, certain things shunt this development of higher consciousnesses, like the perpetuation of fear in the media to sell more papers, magazines & products and to distract us from what truly matters.

It makes me think of when we were all kids, did we care about where other people came from? Did we think money would make us happy, or anything else for that matter? We wanted things of course but not because it would make us happy, but because we just wanted them so bad in the moment, like cake or a certain toy. What if, we’ve lost our childlike wonder along the way to growing up and seeing things with judging eyes, and closed minds? I want to get some of that back.

Simon’s obviously watched some Bill Hicks when he says this: “Everything’s a choice between fear and love, we may as well choose love because death is coming.”

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I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought provoking stuff. What’s your opinion on the subject?

Follow my blog by email on the top right hand side, and get weekly inspiration, videos, quotes and resources on thinking, questioning, growing and learning about yourself, others, life and the world.

Dude, don’t be a bully to your inner child

“The earlier you learn that you should focus on what you have, and not obsess about what you don’t have, the happier you will be. You really will be happier in life if you can let go of the things you will never have.” – Amy Poehler

She talks of gratitude for what our bodies do for most of us, like digest food, run up a mountain, breathe or connect with others. And focusing on the positives instead of obsessing over things we can’t change. Of course some stuff we can change to some extent, (weight, clothes, hair) but it’s always better and healthier to come from a place of acceptance and love for yourself than hatred and oppression.

Okay Amy doesn’t mention the ‘inner child’, but I believe that in everyone there’s like two people, two opposing forces (the inner child and inner adult) and there’s sometimes bullying and conflict between them which effects both parts of you. This happens because of negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself. Both parts are unhappy, the inner adult doesn’t get any satisfaction out of bullying the inner child, it’s disappointed and expecting too much, and the inner child feels shit because it’s abused all the time by the inner adult. It’s a bad situation, but there’s ways to get out of it. First of all, be a good friend to yourself and have your own back, don’t bully yourself – you wouldn’t bully a friend like that would you? And a wise woman once told me, that whenever I feel negative towards myself and I bully myself with thoughts, to imagine me saying those things or physically beating up a young child version of myself and watching her bleed and cry, and hopefully this induces feelings of wanting to not hurt your inner child and protect, nurture and love it instead. You’re hurting the most vulnerable part of yourself with these damaging thoughts. The innocent, vulnerable, open, free child version of you is still in you and always will be, we all began with the child and it never grows up, we just acquire a new self too, the adult.

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I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought provoking stuff. What’s your opinion on the subject?
Follow my blog by email on the top right hand side, and get weekly inspiration, videos, quotes and resources on thinking, questioning, growing and learning about yourself, others, life and the world.

If this was a bit weird to digest, feel free to ask me more about it 🙂 mindfuelstuff@gmail.com

 

“I hate to break it to you, but there is no big lie, there is no system, the universe is indifferent.” Don Draper, Mad Men

A lot of us feel cheated by the universe at times, like it’s out to get us, why us? It’s conspiring against us, wanting us to fail. But actually the universe doesn’t give a shit about us or about anything, it just exists, it’s indifferent, it’s neural.

Which in a way it’s quite nice, I wouldn’t want the world to have such power over the outcome of my circumstances, good or bad. The world doesn’t revolve around us, it will be here after we die, doing it’s thing, sun rising and setting, winds blowing, oceans lapping, we’re temporary travelers and nothing is truly ours to keep.

“The thing about the ultimate cosmic meaninglessness of man is that you can either wallow in your insignificance and the attendant pain that brings in a culture so obsessed with fame and being important, or you can fall in love with literally everything and everyone in a dozen small ways because everything still exists despite the statistical unlikelihood of it all and that’s a goddamn miracle” – anon

So if we be a bit more mindful of these points, we can get a bit of perspective on what matters in our lives by realising our inevitable demise and our insignificance to the universe.

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I hope this had some value to you, and your mind is more full of meaningful, thought provoking stuff. What’s your opinion on the subject?

Follow my blog by email on the top right hand side, and get weekly inspiration, videos, quotes and resources on thinking, questioning, growing and learning about yourself, others, life and the world.

Email me at mindfuelstuff@gmail.com if you want to talk more on this.