The first of my 'small changes'
1. Try to wake up at 4 am
* Sleep by 10pm
* Drink 1-2 glasses of water before sleeping
* Wake up to answer nature's call
* Walk around the house for 10 minutes after the trip to the washroom
-> Key take aways:
It took me just 2 days to start waking up at 4am. Mostly because sleeping at 10pm was an issue those two days. The day I slept at 10pm, I woke up at 4am.
I set an alarm for 6am as a fallback and planned my day from that time onwards. I was not sure if waking up at 4am is a 'small change' as my usual wake up time was around 8 am.
But from my experience, it isn't that big of a challenge. Sleeping on time (by 10pm) is the challenge.
Walking around in the morning helped me get over the desire to go back to bed because it was still dark. My eyes adjusted to the dark and I realised I had a plan regarding my extra morning hours.
There are three tasks to do after waking up at 4am, and taking the walk
× Drink a glass of luke warm water (or two)
× Go to the loo
× Measure body weight
I have slept for around 6 hours, which isn't enough sleep. So it is time to sit comfortably, and meditate for around 2 hours.
Sleep is an unconscious meditation,
Meditation is a conscious sleep.
More on meditation later.
The moon viewing day (お月見, Otsukimi)
The moon of today is called Jugoya (the 15th night), Imo-meigetsu (potato harvest moon), and Chushu-no-meigetsu (mid-autumn moon). However, the actual date changes every year because it is determined by the traditional Japanese calendar. The exact origins of moon viewing are uncertain, but most people believe it came from China. And the moon viewing event seems to be held in Asian countries.
In Japan, as it was held in the harvest season, it became an autumn thanksgiving event. In modern times, dango(rice dumplings), pampas grass and seasonal food such as sweet potatoes are given as offerings during moon viewing.
I was a fan of the animated series "Sailor Moon". So I was surprised when I learned about legends such as Western vampires and werewolves, but even in "The Tale of the Bamboo Cutter", which is said to be the oldest science fiction in Japan, the moon is depicted as a mysterious different world.
Kyoto has a location where we can view the moon reflected on the water’s surface.
Why are we afraid of change in our work or life?
🔸 #3 insight: Adapt change
We all strive towards outcomes at work, at home and in our communities because we believe they will make us happy. It might be a good job, a loving relationship, money or possessions. It might be better health or spiritual peace of mind. Let's call all of them our lovely "Cheese".
And it can feel wonderful when we eventually get our cheese. Then, we hold to it tightly and dream it will never end.
Yet life is constantly changing and sometimes it blocks (or even undoes) things we expect, feel we deserve or have worked so long and so hard to accomplish. But because we fear starting again, looking foolish or that we might end up somewhere worse, we often don’t want to change when things begin changing around us.
I always felt very confident about changes around and even called it my comfort zone. Yet life kicked my butt recently at work multiple times. I wasn't growing so fast I was used to. Then, it begun:
- I denied it's my problem.
- I was frustrated and started to blame others.
- I held to what was, instead of what simply now is.
- And I wasn't ready to look for a new cheese.
I'm so lucky to be surrounded by emphatic people who felt my frustration. Immediately offered their help and it took me 24 hours to find a new cheese. I'm sharing this with you and hope it will help like it did to me. Maybe not today, tomorrow, or even this year, but knowing this makes us as individuals stronger.
Change is inevitable. Anticipate it, adapt to it, learn to embrace and enjoy it. Do so and you won’t just suffer less stress and unhappiness, you’ll enjoy more success and fulfillment in every part of your life and your work.
🔸 Book that highlights this issue is "Who Moved My Cheese?" by the best-selling author, Dr. Spencer Johnson. I dedicate this to Ingrida Ziliute, who helped me to move on.