Interview part. 2

A little about me

The reasonable man adapts himself to the conditions that surround him… The unreasonable man adapts surrounding conditions to himself… All progress depends on the unreasonable man.’ – George Bernard Shaw

Hello lovely folks out there. Hope this post finds you well. I thought it was probably time for another interview with myself. Mainly for myself to take stock of where I am and how things are going, so here it goes. (Kenan and Kel flashback: Just in case you’d like to relive it. I just did.)

Me: Welcome back!

Metoo: Why thank you, its rather nice to be here, where ever we are pretending here is.

Me: Well, we could say we were anywhere right? So I’ll say we are in a tree house, in a Scandinavian Forest, at dusk.

Metoo: nice.

Me: so how are things? Whats the craic?

Metoo: you know what, mad busy. But great! I feel like I’m on an accelerated learning curve at the moment and everyday just seems to throw another great opportunity to take something from. Which is great, but I have not stopped. Saturday was the first day in about 3 months where I just stayed at home. With no plans. Did nothing. It was bizarre. I felt the need to schedule my free time… I worry myself sometimes. 

Me: you worry me too. You need to learn how to relax and appreciate the down time. Whats been keeping you busy?

Metoo: Well as I previously mentioned, I’m planning on leaving my current job in September, so I have been racing against myself to have a bunch of things to do then. I’ve also been socializing a hell of a lot. Specifically, I’ve been going to a bunch of Esc the City events, for whom I now guest blog and help host events, which has been awesome. I’ve also been looking for work that inspires me. So applied to a cool start up, looked internally where I am, for a role more suited to what I want to do (education based), chatting to all my wonderful friends about my ideas etc. Reading a shit ton. Like I can’t actually read enough right now. I’m writing this post as efficiently as possible so that I can get in a solid hour of bedtime reading.

Me: geeze. do you ever stop?! What are you reading at the mo/have you read in the last few weeks?

Metoo: Well I’m currently reading Thrive by Arianna Huffington which is amazing. Packed full of wisdom about how to redefine success (so far I have taken 3 things from the book. meditate, sleep and walk; maybe basic, but completely underestimated and wonderfully simple to incorporate in to our lives). I just finished Creativity Inc. by Ed Catmull the co-creator of Pixar. Seriously, it is now my management ideal bible. If I never read another management book again it will be ok, because this defines the environment I want to work in and cultivate where ever I end up. I also finished Sane New World by Ruby Wax and the Escape Manifesto by the guys who set up Escape the City. Another 2 exceptional reads. I really need to get back into reading some fiction though. So once I’m done with Thrive and then Risk by Dan Gardner :$ I will be taking a little break from non-fiction.

Me: dare I ask whats on your reading list at the mo…?

Metoo: seriously do not. There are about 40 books on there right now and I keep adding to them. I downloaded 5 more books on to my nook over the weekend. I have a habit. I need help. Is there a self help group for obsessive readers? :S But as a little sneaky teaser (mainly because I’m lazy and may never get round to writing blog posts for them all, soz guys.) I will be reading A Moveable Feast by Earnest Hemingway, Margrave of the Marshes by John Peel, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia MarquezThe Art of Learning by Josh Waitzkin and On the Shortness of Life by Seneca… after Risk… at some point. Maybe I need to take a year out of life and just read solidly.. is that a thing?

Me: erm… it is a thing. But most people will judge you and think you’re a bat shit cray my friend. Listening to you is exhausting! Does your mind ever stop?

Metoo: No. not really!

Me: hmm. what do you do to relax?

Metoo: well I started yoga this year which has been utterly trans-formative. It opened up the door to meditation and general connecting the mind and body so I really hope to continue/increase my practice A LOT. I am currently appallingly inflexible. Boo. Also I listen to a lot of music. Omg. you musttttt check out some Nils Frahm. Seriously. Stop what you are doing right now and listen to this:

Nils Frahm- Says

Me: okokok! I’m listening…..

Dam. I have no words.

Metoo: I know. I KNOW. He is playing the Barbican in the Autumn and the tickets are sold out. I am gutted. Oh one other weird thing. Or at least everyone I’ve told seems to think its weird. I’m considering/am planning on going on a 10 day silent meditation retreat later this year. Where you meditate for 10 hours a day… you don’t speak to anyone else. You aren’t even allowed to bring writing/reading materials with you.

Me: not going to lie. sounds freaking weird bud, like you’re torturing yourself. Why are you going doing this?

Metoo: well. I want to learn to meditate. Well. Intensively. The more you do it the better, you can’t over meditate. So the discipline of the center will force you to be comfortable with yourself, face the parts of yourself that you usually mask or run away from. I’m curious more than anything…

Me: ohh kayyyyyy. well you let me know how that goes won’t you!

Metoo: of course 🙂

Me: a couple of final questions my friend. 1. How are you feeling about all the imminent changes about to happen in your life? 2. Is there anything you’re going to miss about this old life?

Metoo: hmm. well 1. How I’m feeling now is approx. 70%- relief/excitement/enthusiasm and 30%- like I’m standing on the edge of cliff about to jump off, not knowing if I’m going to figure out a way to sprout wings before I hit the ground. It’s completely exhilarating and nerve wracking in equal measure, but I feel that I’m slowly getting addicted to that bizarre feeling. So much so that I try to do something that scares me each day and I deliberately do things differently just to see what happens. It’s fun. 🙂 for example I gave away an £80 ticket to Blogstock today for free to a lovely lady who I spotted on Twitter who wanted to go and could no longer afford it. Felt right. What can I say. Sure its a bit mental. But as a wise friend always reminds me; ‘It’s only money, right?’. Right. 2. I am going to sorely miss the people that have pulled me through the last few months. I am surprised each day by their kindness and wisdom and support. I give my firm something, they pick the good eggs. Other than that, honestly, no. The money, security, the kudos just doesn’t excite me. I’m worried about not having it, sure, but its not the end goal I want so it doesn’t motivate me at all. 

Me: I lied, one more question; What are you looking forward to over the next couple of months?

Metoo: Oh wow, so many things, Hanging out with my awesome comic book artist friend from the Backwards Burd guys this weekend to work on a little creative project, Transpride next weekend who another brilliant friend is co-organizing, Boomtown in a couple of weeks, working with the Escape the City team hosting and blogging. The list is endless! I’m lucky and happy and looking forward to blogging more too perhaps. Completely failing at the semi regular posts thing. You’re lucky if you get one a week out of me! I’ll try do better I promise 🙂

Me: I’ll hold you to that! As always its been grand. Oh god Nils Frahm, I think my life changed the moment I listened to that. It was tangible. WAIT can we have a picture of you? Can we oh can we?!

Metoo: and you think I’m dramatic. Erm. ok Creepy McCreeperson:

Also RIMA

Me: ahhhh. Lovely. even if I do say so myself. Till next time! 🙂

Follow Me on twitter here: @rimapatel7

Sane New World- Ruby Wax

Books, People

sane new world

‘When you get to the end of your rope. Tie a knot and hang on.’ – Franklin D. Roosevelt

I promised a separate review on Ruby Wax’s book as it deserves one. I feel, (correct me please if you think I’m wrong), that mental health and well-being  is completely underestimated and neglected in society.

So how the hell do we address the issue? Individual responsibility? Education? Change in attitude? Awareness and media coverage? Change in policy? All of the above perhaps.

This is why I feel that Ruby Wax, her show, her book and public presence is doing something so fundamentally important as it works on these actions simultaneously. It’s candidly written from intense and dark personal experience, so rings painfully true at points and she doesn’t hold back which allows the reader to fully accept the reality for those living with mental health illnesses.

Once on board you are given, the fascinating and eye-opening facts about the brain and how it functions, how mental health issues develop and why it is so difficult to over come. What I found most intriguing is the section about mindfulness based cognitive therapy. The way it helped Ruby herself, how it is always accessible and completely in control of the individual and the potential positive impact it could have for those suffering. Though it may be a constant battle with yourself, its curiously simple and easy to start.

This is essential reading, not least because it is peppered with Ruby’s unmistakably candid humour. It is a great summary for any one suffering with poor mental health, who knows someone with mental health issues or those just curious to understand better.

Also check out her TED Talk and UK tour of Sane New World, links below:

http://www.ted.com/talks/ruby_wax_what_s_so_funny_about_mental_illness

http://www.rubywax.net/tour.html

@Rubywax

Me:

@rimapatel7