Never nothing going on

Moments to live. That’s all we have. How come we let them run through without noticing?

I guess many of you have seen the movie “Peaceful warrior“. If you haven’t, do so 🙂 It’s a story of a promising gymnast obsessed with competition and unable to find peace. He meets a mysterious guy who works at a gas station who teaches him how to find balance and peace.

One of the scenes that defines the movie for me, is when Dan (the gymnast) walks with “Socrates” (the gas-station guy) in a university campus park and says “There’s nothing going on…” See the clip:

Big moments in life are easy to spot, easy to be overwhelmed with. But more and more I realize that actually everything matters. Every moment. I’m practicing to spot and savor every moment to the fullest. What am I talking about? About everything:

  • That morning stretch in bed, when you don’t really want to get out, but you extend your hands and legs and feel the body waking up?
  • That feeling of joy, when you are taking shower and just for a moment enjoy the water falling on your head and streaming in small drops down your face and neck?
  • What about when you take the fresh new towel and rub your face in it. Smell it. Feel the fabric on your face.
  • The walk  to your bus stop and the fine breeze in your hair and the freshness on your face.
  • That when you wait on the bus stop and see mother walking her kid to the school bus and saying goodbye?
  • When after a hard day of work you finally come home and sit with full load into the armchair and all the weight of the world falls down of your shoulders?

That “everything” I have in mind.

It’s not easy to be present in the moment. But it’s priceless.

I don’t like the “fatal scenarios” too much, but somehow it makes people see the world differently. So imagine, that this is the last moments to live for you. Open your “eyes” and see this “everything” that you might have blindly ignored and savor it. Learn to do it regularly. Practice. Learn to see the beauty of life in every moment.

Learn to savor the moments to live. Is there really nothing going on?

Abandoning “good enough”

Many times I get stuck in the rush of working. Most of this times I do job that is good enough. But “good enough” is just not good enough!

Approximately a year ago I agreed to prepare the development block for AIESEC Slovakia together with Ivana and Dey Dos. It was kind of first bigger opportunity to prepare some educational content with a lot of creative freedom and with people who get great things done (just check Ivana’s blog or Dey’s page).  I did not actually have too much to do. Just an introduction section for about 2 hours. I blew it. Well not totally. It was “good enough”. It served the purpose. But it definitely wasn’t awesome. I contributed. But not my best.

I told myself – “NEVER AGAIN!” I took that opportunity to contribute and help people, but I didn’t deliver the best. Never again will I do something, that I care for, “good enough”.

Veľakrát som sa zasekol v pracovnom zhone. Väčšinou v tomto období vykonávam prácu celkom dobre. Ale “celkom dobre” jednoducho nestačí!

Približne pred rokom som sa dohodol, že spolu s Ivanou a Dey Dos pripravím rozvojový blok pre AIESEC Slovensko. Bola to prvá veľká príležitosť pripraviť vzdelávací obsah s množstvom kreatívnej slobody a s ľuďmi, ktorí robia úžasné veci (pozrite si Ivanin blog alebo Deyovú stránku). V skutočnosti som nemal veľa na práci, iba úvodnú časť v trvaní cca. 2 hodiny. Pokašľal som to. Teda nie úplne. Bolo to “celkom dobré”. Slúžilo to účelu. Ale určite to nebolo úžasné. Prispel som, ale neurobil som to najlepšie, čo viem.

Povedal som si – “NIKDY VIAC!” Vzal som túto príležitosť, aby som prispel a pomohol ľuďom, ale nespravil som všetko, čo je v mojich silách. Nikdy viac neurobím niečo, čo ma zaujíma, iba “celkom dobre”.
Continue reading Abandoning “good enough”

Be the doer, not the worker

There are lot of differences between a regular employee and a high-performer. There are a lot of things that make people successful in what they do. One in particular is the attitude. I believe most of you have already had the chance to experience both sides of the stick.

What I consider a strong differentiator is whether one is “WORKING” or “GETTING THINGS DONE”.

A lot of people are employed and they are working.

Working means showing up. Working means following rules. Working means leaving when it’s over. Working means checking time. Working means fear. Working means not-trusting. Working means retaining the status quo.

Fraction of employees is getting things done.

Je veľa rozdielov medzi bežným a vysokovýkonným zamestnancom. Je veľa vecí, ktoré napomáhajú ľuďom stať sa úspešnými v tom, čo robia. Jednou z nich je postoj. Verím, že väčšina z vás už mala možnosť okúsiť obe strany mince.

Za silný rozdiel považujem, či niekto “PRACUJE” alebo “ODVÁDZA URČITÚ PRÁCU”.

Množstvo ľudí je zamestnaných a pracuje.

Pracovať znamená ukázať sa. Pracovať znamená nasledovať pravidlá. Pracovať znamená odísť, keď je koniec. Pracovať znamená sledovať čas. Pracovať znamená mať strach. Pracovať znamená neveriť. Pracovať znamená zachovávať status quo.

Úloha zamesntancov je odviesť určitú prácu.
Continue reading Be the doer, not the worker

A reply to Jarda’s question

My friend Jarda Dokoupil posted an intriguing status question few days ago on facebook. “What is your wildest dream for the world?”

Jarda's question

As I did not want to reply it right away with something quick but I wanted to give it more thought, I said I’ll get back to him later.

My comment on the question

This is my answer.

Môj kamarát, Jarda Dokoupil, vyvesil nedávno na facebooku zaujímavú otázku: “Čo najdivokejšie si pre svet predstavujete?”

Jarda's question

Nechcel som reagovať ihneď, nejakou rýchlou odpoveďou, a tak som si vzal viac času na premyslenie. Napísal som, že sa k nemu vrátim neskôr.

My comment on the question

To je moja odpoveď. Continue reading A reply to Jarda’s question

Call for all: Decline is the goal!

I’ve been taught, that growth is good. But so it seems this isn’t true in everything. At least not with the most important number in the world.

350 is the most important number on the planet!

Specifically, it is 350ppm – parts per million. 350 molecules of carbon dioxide (CO2) per million of  all molecules in the atmosphere. Simply it’s CO2 in the atmosphere

Imagine you have a Coke bottle with 1.000.000 of liquid parts. 900.650 are Coke. 350 is CO2 bubbles.

This  is the top safe level of CO2 in atmosphere for our planet. Unfortunately, to reach this number, we don’t have to grow anymore. We’re at 390! And this is over 2 years old info. And we grow 2ppm per year. Do the math. (btw 275 is where we were for all human history until about 200 years ago).

Myslel som si, že nárast je dobrý, no vyzerá to tak, že nie v každom prípade. Prinajmenšom nie, ak ide o najpodstatnejšie číslo na svete.

350 je najdôležitejšie číslo na planéte!

Konkrétne je 350ppm – častíc na milión. 350 molekúl oxidu uhličitého (CO2) na milión všetkých molekúl v atmosfére. Jednoducho CO2 je v atmosfére.

Predstavte si fľašu Coly, ktorá sa skladá z 1.000.000 časti tekutín. 900.650 z toho je Cola. 350 sú bubliny CO2.

Toto je najvyššia bezpečná úroveň CO2 pre našu atmosféru. Nanešťastie, na dosiahnutie tohto čísla nemusíme viac narastať. My sme na 390! A toto je informácia stará 2 roky. Rastieme ročne o 2ppm. Spočítajte to. (mimochodom 275 je číslo, na ktorom sme boli počas celej ľudskej histórie až do obdobia asi pred 200 rokmi).

Continue reading Call for all: Decline is the goal!

Don’t have life. Rather live!

Life is neither hard, nor easy. Life is neither fair, nor unfair.

It’s funny, how we personalized life. We’ve made it a thing or a person for ourselves. Sometimes we get into thinking it’s outside of us, outside of our scope.

Let me just give a bit of though into some of the quotes on life.

Life is simple. Not easy.

Well, it’s none of those. It’s about HOW WE LIVE, not about HOW LIFE IS. Some people think living is difficult and it’s a never-ending struggle. Some decide that living should be filled with happiness and joy. For the first ones it’s easier to just think that “life is difficult”.

Život nie je ani ťažký, ani ľahký. Život nie je ani fér, ani nefér.

Je vtipné, ako osobne berieme život. Urobili sme z neho “vec” alebo “osobnosť” samú o sebe. Niekedy rozmýšľame, že je to mimo nás, mimo našu pôsobnosť.

Dovoľte mi trošku sa zamyslieť nad niektorými životnými citátmi.

Život je jednoduchý. Nie ľahký.

No…ani jedno z toho. Je to o tom AKO ŽIJEME, nie AKÝ JE ŽIVOT. Niektorí ľudia pokladajú život za zložitý a nekonečný boj. Niektorí sa rozhodnú, že by mal byť plný šťastia a radosti. Pre tých prvých je ľahšie myslieť si: “život je ťažký”.

Keď vám život ponúkne citróny, spravte citronádu.

Je tu niekto, kto ich dá vám! Vo väčšine prípadoch ste to vy sami, kto šiel dole ulicou a kúpil si ich vlastnými mincami = činmi.

Skutočne milujem citáty o živote. Zistil som, že sú inšpiratívne. Napriek tomu by sme sa mali vyvarovať odsúvania kontroly nad naším životom a nepoukazovať naňho ako na samostatnú bytosť. Prežívame naše činy a naše reakcie. Máme plnú kontrolu nad tým, čo robíme a ako reagujeme na to, čo robia iní.

A čo vy? Odsúvate váš život mimo vlastnej kontroly? Alebo vaše akcie a reakcie vykonávate s vedomím, že vytvárajú váš život?

Continue reading Don’t have life. Rather live!

Testimony from a strange place

Some of you, who visited my blog lately, might have been wondering what happened. It’s a lot of silence on Moments to Live in last 4 weeks.

After June, when I was lucky to run into “Trust30” initiative and thanks to that I had written a post almost every day, I faced the reality of actually not knowing what I had started this blog for. Well I knew I wanted to make the difference, inspire and influence people, but that’s a bit too vague, isn’t it? And it’s hard to inspire and lead if you have no home-base, no harbor to ship from.

I looked at the pile of ideas, topics and actions that I had imitated, copy-pasted or just taken from the trendy blogosphere and put here. Even many of the reactions in the #trust30 section seemed unauthentic and mindless for me. I thought: “Well, it’s okay. But it’s not me. It’s not personal. What is MINE in in?”

So I just got into the strange place. Where nothing felt right, but nothing caused acute pain. I started questioning myself, my past and current action, my deepest core. And it is good that I did. It uncovered not the prettiest picture of me, which I kept covered with few quick-fix solutions and self-fooling techniques in the past.

I found a mistake in the program I was running. And I had to turn off few features, before it causes more damage.

Some of you might now book 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey. Some people think reading it is just a “trendy hype”, some take it extremely seriously. I took it as a book: a source of information, which can become knowledge, if I want to apply it.

Couple of times over the course of few last years I started reading it. Never finished. Now I finally have gone through it, taken time to think, search deeper inside and learn from it. Actually I still do keep thinking, summarizing notes and questions coming up.

I’ve always perceived myself, and many people perceived me, as a person of principle, of trust, of integrity. However, I just realize now, how little trustworthy I have been for myself in past few years. There are so little promises that I made to myself and kept, that I wonder I still have that much of self-confidence. I’ve kept better score with promises to others. Though, more and more I find myself putting even those behind, neglecting, “forgetting”, covering them with “business” and “more urgent” things…

And it feels wrong. Sadly, I saw it’s wrong and I keep doing it. It’s not unconscious mistake, it has been a conscious choice of wrong alternatives.

Just for the reference – Since my elementary school I have been overweight. Not extremely, but enough for me to be annoyed with that. And for past, well, almost 15 years, I have repeatedly promised myself to do something about it. I started a number of “workout” schedules. With none of them I lasted more than 3 months.

In the book there’s one section that deals with “scripting” of personality. It mentions 4 scripting paradigms, from which people justify their behavior. Three are external: genetics, family and environment. And then there are the internal principles. I think I’ve let myself to be so influenced by the environment that I almost turned off my own internal navigation system. Not that there’d been bad environment. It might have been bad or good. The point is that I left myself very little space for conscious and value-based decisions.

But even more touching section of the book, that deals with habit called “begin with the end in mind”. I thought I knew somewhat about leadership. I have been dealing with the topic for over 5 years. But in my own life, I neglected the major leadership/management difference, which “beginning with the end in mind” is about – you have to take every action and decision with your principles in mind.

This is mainly why I kept out of writing lately. I have to spend more time in my own discovery. I have to clean my own mess before I try to be the public advisor. Private victories have to precede the public victories.

I hope you will have the patience to bear with me for few more weeks, because I believe this is one of the most fundamental actions that I need to take in the current course of my life. I have to anchor myself, because the world around me swirls faster and faster. And if I want to make the difference (which is one thing I am sure of), I have to find and use my changeless core.

What I wouldn’t read in June 2011

Many of us do that – we see an interesting link of a friend on facebook, twitter, google+ or elsewhere, click, it opens, but…. it’s too long, I don’t have the time to read it now, I’ll check it out later… And we never do. How many interesting ideas don’t reach us just because we have no discipline of getting back to them?

So I thought: “Okay, let me try this. Let me check the “read-it-later-list” after I  collect 30 sites in it.”

Here comes, what I would not have read in June 2011 and was interesting to read in the end:

Mnoho z nás to robí – vidíme zaujímavý link, ktorý uverejnil priateľ na facebooku, twitteri, googli+ alebo kdekoľvek inde, klikneme naň, otvorí sa, aleee….je to veľmi dlhé, nemám teraz čas na čítanie, pozriem si to neskôrA nikdy to neurobíme. Koľko zaujímavých informácií nás minie iba preto, lebo nie sme dostatočne disciplinovaní na to, aby sme sa k nim vrátili.

Tak som si pomyslel:  „Dobre, tentokrát to skúsim. Skontrolujem si svoj “prečítaj-to-neskôr-list“, keď sa v ňom nazbiera 30 vecí.“

Tak tu to máme – čo by som nebol čítal v júni 2011, a stálo za to sa k tomu vrátiť. (mimochodom, za slovenský preklad tohto článku ďakujem mojej sestre Lucii).

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21 Books Every Entrepreneur Should Read
[21 kníh, ktoré by mal prečítať každý podnikavec]
Zaujímavý zoznam kníh s komentármi a odporúčaniami od mnohých “významných” ľudí., ktorí čítali danú knihu. Cenné odporúčania vhodné pozrieť pri kúpe ďalšej knihy. Pozrite si tiež!

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The New Rules of Marketing for Start-ups
[Nové pravidlá marketingu pre start-upy]
Naozaj neznášam názvy, ktoré obsahujú slovo “pravidlá”.  Napriek tomu som potlačil svoj odpor a prečítal týchto pár zaujímavých, jednoducho napísaných  “sedliackych” pravidiel, ktoré neplatia len pre marketingový svet. Moje osobné ponaučenie :  „Chcete kontrolu? Zbavte sa jej.” Dajte slobodu zákazníkom a kontrolu získate späť. Článok nájdete tu.

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Sources of Insight by J.D.Meier
[Zdroje hlbšieho poznania od J.D.Meiera]
Veľmi zaujímavý blog J.D.Meiera (@JDmeier), s ktorým som sa stretol na #IS, a o ktorom som vlastne veľa nevedel, teda okrem komentárov na #IS. Nájdete tu archív zdrojov v oblastiach osobného rozvoja, vedenia, citácie, kníh… Určite sa budem častIejšie vracať na túto stránku. Navštívte aj vy Sources of Insight.

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Richard Branson on Thinking Big
[Richard Branson o “myslení vo veľkom”]
Priamočiary a jednoduchý článok, ktorý opäť potvrdzuje základnú logiku pri začatí vlastného podnikania – vezmite to, čo radi robíte, ľudí, s ktorými radi robíte pracujte na tom pre ľudí, ktorí o to stoja. Povedané jedným z najúspešnejších podnikateľov to dáva zmysel, hm? Prečítajte si priamo na entrepreneur.com.

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HBR Management Tip of the Day: 3 Ways to Help Your Company Shift Courses
[ HBR Manažérsky tip dňa: 3 spôsoby ako pomôcť vašej firme zmeniť smer]
HBR Management Tip of the Day  je pre mňa zdrojom cenných múdrostí a myšlienok. Tento článok ma znovu uistil v jednej veci, ktorá je mnohokrát stále nepochopená:  Vytvoriť zákaznicky, nie produktovo, orientovanu kultúru. Opýtajte sa sami seba – bez čoho by Vaša spoločnosť nemala zmysel? Áno, zákazníci! Tiež sa prihláste na odber.

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What’s Your Power Style? by Maggie Craddock
[Aký je váš silový štýl? od Maggie Craddock]
Veľmi zaujímavý pohľad na to, ako je náš proces rozhodovania a vplyvu na druhých podmienený detstvom a prvou formálnou organizáciou, v rámci ktorej sme fungovali – rodinou. Pozrite si článok od Maggie Cradock na HBR alebo navštívte  stránku jej spoločnosti

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The eternal power of relationships by Garr Reynolds
[Večná sila vzťahov od Garra Reynoldsa]
Silný a dojímavý príspevok od Garra Reynoldsa (@prezentationzen) o dôležitosti vzťahov a spoločnosti v dnešnom svete, prepojené opisom vzťahu s jeho matkou a jej stratou.. Veľmi dojemné. Navštívte Garra na www.presentationzen.com.

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Three must see college graduation speeches
[Tri promočné prejavy, ktoré musíte vidieť]
Po tom, ako som si prečítal Garrovu knihu  Presentation Zen, som nejakú tu dobu strávil aj na jeho stránke. Moje ponaučenie:  „Vďakabohu, že sny je možné  meniť. Ak by sme všetci zostali pri nášom prvom sne, svet by bol zaplavený kovbojmi a princeznami. Takže bez ohľadu na to, aký je Váš sen  práve teraz, ak ho nedosiahnete, neprehrali ste a nie ste lúzri.”

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———–

Ak by som si nebol našiel pol dňa na prejdenie týchto 30+ odkazov, ktoré som zozbieral počas júna do môjho “prečítaj-to-potom” zoznamu, pravdepodobne by ma obišlo veľa zaujímavých myšlienok. Nebola by to škoda?

Ďakujem všetkým umelcom, ktorí vytvorili tieto články!

Našli ste tu niečo zaujímavé? Dajte mi vedieť v komentároch  Máte svoj “prečítam-to-neskôr-zoznam”? A vrátite sa k nemu?

PS: Ak hľadáte odkaz na dobrý nástroj k vytvoreniu vlastného prečítam-to-potom, pozrite readitlaterlist.com

Za slovenský preklad tohto článku ďakujem mojej sestre Lucii Continue reading What I wouldn’t read in June 2011

Computer is like a hammer

The explanation on the end. But don’t look there yet 😉

On Friday evening, when I got back from Tahrir, my computer did not start 🙂 I don’t know whether it was kind of the revolutionary act of it, but it just would repeat “fan error” while booting and then turn down. Even cleaning the fan with the hover didn’t help.

So I had to admit, that unless a miracle happens, the Sunday will be a day with no PC and no internet.

First feeling: “Aaaaaaghrrrr!” Second feeling: “Aaaaaagrhrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!”

But then I thought for a while and I realized: This is the great opportunity. I needed rest and I wanted to try to unplug for a moment. And now I had it. Unintentional, but the chance of rest & going analog was here!

What did I do during my unplugged time?

Vysvetlenie na konci. Nepozerajte sa tam ešte. 😉

V piatok večer, keď som sa vrátil z Tahriru, mi nenaštartoval počítač 🙂 Neviem, či to bol nejaký prejav revolúcie, ale jednoducho opakoval “fan error – chyba ventilátora” počas bootovania, a potom sa vypol. Ani očistenie ventilátora tisícimi spôsobmi nepomohlo.

Tak som musel priznať, že sa zázraky stávajú – Nedeľa bude deň bez počítača a internetu.

Prvý pocit: “Aaaaaaghrrrr!” Druhý pocit: “Aaaaaagrhrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!”

Ale potom som sa na chvíľu zamyslel a uvedomil si : Toto je obrovská príležitosť. Potrebujem odpočinok a chcem skúsiť byť na chvíľu “odpojený”.Neúmyselná, ale predsa tu bola šanca na odpočinok a odpojenie!

Čo som robil počas môjho odpojenia?

Continue reading Computer is like a hammer

Tahrir Trip

Tahrir square (Freedom square) is the main square of Cairo, Egypt Capital. It became extremely well known around the world, almost as much known as the legendary pyramids, by the events that took place there in January & February 2011 during the “Egyptian 2011 revolution“.

Since the time, when Mubarak stepped down from his almost life-long presidency of this country and the reign over it was given to the military council, the fellow Egyptians made “Tahrir Fridays” a new regular weekly program. After Friday morning prayers masses (bigger or smaller) of people march to protest on this center point of Cairo.

And the last week was again one of those, when Tahrir amassed a big crowd demanding justice & progress from the appointed temporary government. You see, it was partially a reaction to the events of Tuesday, when a memorial for the victims of first phase of revolution restarted the feelings in the masses. Foolish government solution sparkled the clashes full of tear-gas and stone again. (read more on NY Times)

Naturally, Friday July 8, which followed had to be big again. But it was not the “let’s show we are angry thing”. As Egypt walks slowly towards it’s (hopefully) first democratic parliamentary elections since long time, the party rallying is picking up. However, this day the one thing that they could agree on and decided to put voice together once again was the speeding up of the trials with the accused from the government. The protest already continues for the 4th day.

Well, we will see what Tahrir Fridays will in the end bring to this country full of expectations. 

Continue reading Tahrir Trip