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Miguel

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  1. Before diving in todays topic, I want mention something. I liked yesterday mission because to me it was about thinking about my problems, and coming up with a strategy to deal with them. I listed many things I am afraid of and decided to face my fear of heights. However, I think some of the fears I mentioned need more urgent care. Today I had an idea that can work for my fear of taking risks. I think that enrolling in a course of improvisation might help to solve it, because in improvisation one needs to take risks all the time. In addition it may also improve my social skills making me more confident and more espontaneous. This year I saw something on the university here but didn't dare to try because it was in German. But now if I think about it, this was probably more of a excuse that a real reason to not do it. I want to do it next round and it is going to be in my vision board for the next year. Day 16 - Social intelligence, Today's challenge was very interesting. It is amazing to see how something that you normally don't pay much attention, at least not consciously, make such a huge difference in the social level. Many times I wondered why I was not able to make rapport and have a nice conversation. Today I might have found an answer, I guess I was using to much of seeking rapport tune. It was nice to realize that, it made me conscious of the problem and now I have the opportunity to improve it. Thanks Cam, once more! If you are curious about my recording, you can hear it in the file attached. This was my third tentative after the first recording. Be aware it is far from good, but for sure it sounds better than the first one. Default_letter-day-one.mp3
  2. Day 15 - What I am afraid of: I am afraid of heights I am afraid of rejection I am afraid of confrontation I am afraid of failing I am afraid of not being perfect I am afraid of taking risks last but not least, I am afraid of frogs! Somehow I didn't manage to find ten things I am afraid of. I put seven here, but I am sure there are many more, I am just not able to remember them now. From this list, the one that definitely needs more attention are my fears to frogs. There are two many of them here in Germany! Not really! A mission that I want to complete is paragliding. This would help me to face my fears of heights. To complete the mission I have to check for a company, get the information I need, schedule the day and go for the jump. I want to do this now in December. Lets see what happens.
  3. Hey Cam, Thanks for the advice!
  4. Day 14 - Discipline, Today's challenge wasn't new to me. Since I stopped playing, 74 days ago now, I started meditating one hour per day, mostly everyday. I was meditating even before that, since June, but I was not taking it seriously. I think that committing to the meditation is one of the majors routine that is keeping me way from gaming. I was first introduced to it during a course I did last June. It was a 10 days meditation course in which I had to be disconnected from the world, i. e. no computer or cellphone. I also could not speak with anyone for the duration of the course. The course was intense and by the end of it I had meditated approximately 100 hours - around 10 hours a day. I have to say it was not relaxing nor was it easy. I needed a lot of will power to stay until the end, specially because I was not used at all to be siting cross legs for the whole day. Although I did not see much difference there, I was able to see it once I was back to normal life. It made me more aware of my feelings, it made me more conscious. I liked the results and decided to do it at least one hour a day. The technique I learned there is called Vipassana, and basically consists on the observation of body sensations. I did it in one center here in Germany but I know they have centers all around the world. For those interested you can check the following link: https://www.dhamma.org/en/about/vipassana Looking forward for the midway challenge!
  5. Day 12 & 13 - yesterday challenge (12) Love the idea to exercise in 7 minutes. Is such a short period that there is no excuse to that. Now I just have to check out some of the exercise which I am not sure if I am doing it right. todays challenge - (13) This one is so true to me. I definitely suffer from the do-it-later syndrome. I am always postponing something that I wanted to do, that I thought I should do, or that I promised to someone. Those things will hunt me for a long time. I was aware of this problem before and I decided to write down some stuff that I was postponing in my white board. I thought it would be a nice idea to actually see those things. Seeing them there help me to work on them because if I have any free time, I can look to the white board and choose one to work on. It is a continuous reminder. However what I put there was just a part of it, and taking 15 minutes to create a list made me aware of many other things I need to work on. The list helps to direct my action to stuff I want to do.
  6. Hi Florian, I completely understand you. It definitely add another dimension to the Christmas season. Once you get to know, it is hard to live without!
  7. Updates, I finally finished my vision board, pic is below. I am sure it could be a bit more ambitious, but I decided to start small. I am going home by the middle of December. One problem I always have there is that I end up being bored, without much to do, which leads me to play. I don't want follow the same circle again. So I decided to think before hand what I want to do there to spend my time in a more productive way. When the vision board mission came I thought it was a nice exercise to figure out the activities I had the interest doing there. Here is the list: 1 - visit the old city of Rio de Janeiro - I have been to Rio once but not to the old city. This time I want to take two or three days to have a look around. 2&4 - Near my hometown there are two attractions that I would like to visit. One is a natural history museum, which contains many fossils that were found in the region. I also would like to visit a place called "horizonte perdido" (lost horizon). I first heard about it this year and I instantly felt in love with the view. 3 - This picture describes three things at once. First one, I want to keep working on my comfort zone. I could even try to do some of the challenges with the people there. I want to be more open and take more advantages of the opportunities. Second, I want to do paragliding once, and I thin beautiful scenery of Rio de Janeiro would be perfect for that. Third, I would like to keep working with my German. I want to read and watch news in German, so I don't get too rusty. 4 - I enjoy cooking and I want to take this time to try out some recipes. I also want to cook to my family and friends some of the stuff I learned here. 5 - I want to read two books while I am there. 6 - I want to keep on with my meditation habit. 7 - I want to spent quality time with family and friends 8 - In my city they have a nice christmas light event occurring every year. I planed to attend many times but didn't manage. This year I want to go there. That is it. I know it is quite simple but I think it can help me to stay clean while I am there. I will definitely work on some more ambitious ideas for the 2016 board. I will post that here once is done!
  8. Four years!! That is a huge number, well done man!! Nice to see that is actually possible to keep doing it for a long time. Lets see how long I last!
  9. Day 11 - Discipline, @Cam - I should have guessed where all this talk about cold water was leading to! Just after reading today's mission I thought, Is Cam serious? Really? With temperatures going around 0, an ice cold shower is not what I have in mind for a perfect morning! My second thought was, man, why did I start this challenge just now, I should have done it during summer, by then the mission would be much easier! But then I thought, man, if you cant stand the hot get out of the kitchen, which in my situation can be translated to - Man, if you cant stand the cold water, get out of the shower! I changed my thoughts about the winter to give it a positive turn - it is harder to get a cold shower now, you definitely need more will power to do that. That is good because if I am able to do it I should be even more proud of myself. I decided to get in. I have to say the head first method was scary. I did start throwing a bit of water on my feet so I could feel how cold it was. Guess what, it was damn cold! It dint help much. The thing is, if I really wanted to complete this challenge, there was no way around it. I dived in, head first. When taking the shower I realized that the water was not that cold, and it was actually warming up. Too good to be true. Out of habit I opened the warm water, not the cold. I changed it and was able to complete the challenge. I think it is too early to talk about the effects it had on my discipline, I couldn't notice anything special. However, it did have a very positive effect on my energy. I was the whole day alert and active, even after lunch when I normally struggle being sleepy. Taking this in consideration I am even thinking to take the bonus mission and do it for a month. Let see what happen.
  10. Day 10, Wow one third of the challenge is gone. Looking forward to see what comes next. I was really surprised by todays mission, I never singed in a karaoke and I think that might be fun. I am planing to do it tomorrow. Let's see what happens!
  11. I was quite surprised, they muted it within 30 minutes after I have posted it there. Didn't know that could happen! Just changed it, now it has a rights free music. It is not the song I used, but it is better than mute!
  12. Day 9 - Courage, Today's challenge was somewhat easier. I am definitely not that much Brazilian when it comes to dancing, but it was fun doing it . I definitely will do it again, but next time without taping it, of course! The link is below. I just checked it and it was muted due to copy rights issues. But it may be it is just happening here, Germany is a bit more conservative regarding to songs on youtube. Just try it out. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rmBPh-_75s8
  13. Hey Cam, You won’t believe man, this idea of the swimming pool came to my mind one or two months ago (and I thought I have reinvented the wheel, man, is so difficult to be a creator in the 21 century! ) I had the idea after swimming in some very cold lakes around the German Alpes. The water was quite cold, but the mission was to enter in every lake we stopped by. As you said, I would put my toes in and create courage to get going. But at certain point, normally when water was around my waist, I would stop there unable to go forward or backward. If I continued forward the water would reach my back, which for me is the most unbearable part of the process of getting into a cold lake. I feel cold only thinking about it! The same thing would also happen if I thought about jumping. So I didn't want to go forward. But I didn't want to go back either. First because I already made that far, I couldn't go back and lose all the mind work I have to do to convince myself to get into the water in the first place. Second, if I got out I would still be cold, so better cold inside than outside. But then I was stuck there, with water to my waist, unable to move. That is exactly what happens with me when choosing. I am hit by a paralysis and I cant go forward or go back. I am stopped by my thinking trying to decide what to do, and in the end I cant do anything. The thing is, for the lake, as for the pool, you are right, once you are in you can have a lot of fun. All the lakes we tried I finally got in, and it was amazing, and gave me a different view from the places we have been. It was clear to me that once the water was on my waist, there was no way back, I would eventually get in. It was already decided. But still I would struggle and in all occasions I needed ten to fifteen minutes to really dive in. As you said, if I had jumped at the beginning I would have ten to fifteen minutes more to enjoy, and less time to struggle. Writing to you now I am realizing that maybe what I need to do is to shift my focus. If I had centered my thinking on the fun instead of focusing on the short time of uncomfortable cold, things would be easier I guess. And I think the same reasoning can also be applied for making choices. Maybe instead of focusing on any discomfort I should focus more on what I want out from the choice I am making. That might help me to jump when I am tending to struggle. Is definitely something I want to try out. Regarding the self criticism, you are right, I should take step by step. It is just that sometimes it seems to me that any improvement appears to be so small near to all things I need to work on. But is clear that thinking like that wont help me. Breath in and breath out. The small steps are the ones that will keep me walking, and I agree I should be proud for taking them. And I am. There is no need to rush, after all Rome wasn't built in a day! Really appreciate your help and valuables insights. Thanks!
  14. Day 8 - Courage, Today I managed to complete the challenge. Completing it was easier than I thought. As I didn't manage during lunch time, I made a break at work at 16.00 and went around my workplace to see if I could spot anyone. I saw a girl and I liked her and decided to stop her. I stop her and told her that I found her scarf nice, which in fact I did. I didn't expect she would react like she did. She smiled at me and said, it was her favorite. However I did not realize it at once. I was so preoccupied to do it right that I forgot to do the key thing in conversation, to listen. When she finished I just complimented her again, and said she had a nice combination and nice taste. That is all I trained to say, not very spontaneous, but I needed to know what to say to deal with the anxiety before hand. She thanked me and both parted. Coming back to work I was happy because I took the courage to do it. At the same time I was unhappy because I didn't listen to her and if I was listening the conversation might have been longer, I could have picked up her line at once and maybe she would have had a different impression of me. My criticisms and perfectionism entered the room and didn't want to let me enjoy the fact that I completed the mission. It seems that it is never good enough. I tried to close my eyes and realize what I just did. Okay it could have been better, but definitely that was not the point of the challenge. I did what I was supposed to do and I should be happy and proud about it. That is the part my focus should go on, but sometimes I do struggle with self criticism. It is something I definitely needs to learn how to deal with.
  15. Today I was again after the 8th challenge. First of all I want to say this challenge brought me to back to world. Yesterday and today, every time I would get out of the house I would look around to see the people on my surroundings. I realized that for a long time I have been living in my own world without appreciating the moment, completely blind to what was happening around me. I was pretty much focused on my problems and not paying attention to the beauty of life. This challenge awoke a part of me that was long sleeping and I am thankful for that. Today I stopped to think why I failed yesterday. The reason that come to my mind is about choice. I have some problems to realize what I really like, what I don’t. And this happen mostly in all areas of my life, from big decisions to the very small one. Every time I have to chose something or say if I like it or not, I look to it and wait for something to happen, as if in the case I like it, a green light would pop up in my mind, but if that is not the case, a red light would appear instead. As you may have guessed, independently for how long I wait, the light never appears, be it green or red, and as a result I continue without really knowing if I like it or not. That is quite hard because I am not sure I am in the right way or not. I have a impression that with other people to like or not something is part is automatic and ingrained in the system. I know everyone struggles with big choices, but as I said before I have the same problem also for small things. I remember once I went wit a friend to buy a shoes and took me like two hours to decide between two colors. I was sure about the model but not about the color. And you have to agree, that is a very basic choice. Imagine how much time I would need to make the big choices; months, maybe years. Or maybe I just avoid doing them.
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