Part 3 of my Heart-to-Heart with myself, this should be a good one.

verb: evaluate; 3rd person present:

  1. form an idea of the amount, number, or value of; assess.
    “when you evaluate any hammer, look for precision machining”
    synonyms: assessjudgegaugerateestimateappraiseanalyzeexamine, get the measure of;

    find a numerical expression or equivalent for (an equation, formula, or function).

Heh, you know I’ve noticed that all three words require me to take the stance in the 3rd person, which means that I have to step outside of myself to really get a firm grasp of this.

So this is where I should jot down all of the things that I deem important in my life, on every level. So let’s start externally and go inward.

The World:
This world and my place in it seems to be alright. I’m currently 26 years old and living with my Mom, Sister, her Husband and 2 Girls , and 3 other Brothers; I’m unemployed, but have a car; I have debt, but am getting help with that, as well as with the unemployment; I don’t have many possessions, but I’m glad for what I have; I don’t really need anything more, save for useless junk that I’d think would be cool to have, but that’s about it…

Hmm… This isn’t right. I’ve got it! There are Seven Dimensions of Wellness that I learned in Health, I should do my self-evaluation based on that! Using this

  1. Social Wellness: OK, So my social life has been somewhat lacking, I don’t have a girlfriend, but I’ve never really felt alone, in fact, my introverted side helps me with the suppression of that feeling, although at times, I feel as though I should hang out with friends more often.
  2. Emotional Wellness: Hmm. Well, my emotions not being in check is what brought me to this, so it’s safe to say that there’s something wrong with my Emotional wellness. Thinking about the greatest factor to me, emotionally, would be when my Father died, I felt as though I properly mourned him and acted according to what I believe he would have wanted me to do, which was to know that he loved me and I loved him and get back to work. I’ll always miss him, but I don’t think that his Death is the cause of my troubles.
  3. Spiritual Wellness: Ahh, now this is something I’m well aware that I’m lacking. I’m planning on reading the Bible more, starting with Luke, one chapter at a time, thanks to the guidance of a friend. I’ve also contacted the Young Adults Ministry that my church has, and I’ll be going to them sometime in the future to interact with other youths who have a greater faith than myself, with God’s grace, I’ll be closer to Him, so I know that this will improve in the future.
  4. Environmental Wellness: Now let’s see, I’m pretty good with the environment. I’ll be selling my Tahoe so I’ll be contributing less CO to the Ozone. I like gardening and although I have no personal plants of my own, I do help out watering the plants we do have. When I have my own home or even the funds to do so, I hope to plant trees.
  5. Occupational Wellness: Ahhh, This is something that I am most definitely not “well” in. After graduating, this all seems to have halted, I don’t have a job yet, and I’m not in med school, I’ll find out whether or not I got accepted soon enough, but for the most part, this has been pretty stagnant, I’ve no personal fulfillment in this area, nor do I belong to any professional team/organization. So this is something that needs my focus on to fix.
  6. Intellectual Wellness: Heh, this one is also another area I’m not “well” in. Although I do have a basic curiosity for things in the world, I don’t really pursue anything to the point of depth. I’ve all but forgotten my biology notes, and that’s what I majored in! I need to start reviewing what I once knew, and really feel like I know something! This isn’t stagnant, but it’s definitely something I need to work on also.
  7. Physical Wellness: Well, I guess this one is not so bad, granted, I hadn’t worked out at all since the ending of the challenge, but I’m already planning my next routine to attempt, and I’ll be exercising again soon enough. Although I should clean up my eating a lil, “Eating everything” isn’t exactly the healthiest of diets.

Hmm… So I think this is a good start… Well, it’s as good a start as any, I guess… Now that I’ve identified which areas in my life that need improvement, I can start taking steps towards making said improvements. Spiritual, Occupational, Intellectual. These are the usual things that divide good men from great men, now I guess we’re going to find out whether I’m a good man or a great man.

Evaluate, Verify, Validate

Part two of my Heart-to-Heart with myself.

During that conversation with my family that took 3-4 hours long, my sister repeated this phrase twice, “Evaluate, Verify, and Validate.” Since she repeated herself, she obviously wanted me to focus my reflections on these three words. So let’s break it down, shall we?

verb: evaluate; 3rd person present:

  1. form an idea of the amount, number, or value of; assess.
    “when you evaluate any hammer, look for precision machining”
    synonyms: assessjudgegaugerateestimateappraiseanalyzeexamine, get the measure of;

    find a numerical expression or equivalent for (an equation, formula, or function).

So let’s see, to Evaluate is to start forming, measuring, inspecting, so in this case, it’d be forming an idea for my Self.

verb: verify

  1. make sure or demonstrate that (something) is true, accurate, or justified.
    “his conclusions have been verified by later experiments”
    synonyms: substantiateconfirmprovecorroborate, back up, bear out, justify,supportuphold, attest to, testify to, validateauthenticateendorse,certify

    antonyms: refute
    • LAW
      swear to or support (a statement) by affidavit.

OK, just as I thought, Verify is simply to confirm, plain and simple. The idea that is my Self will be.

verb: validate;

  1. check or prove the validity or accuracy of (something).
    “these estimates have been validated by periodic surveys”

And Validate is simply the providing of the evidence. The reasons of why something is. Why I want this idea to be.

So there we have it. Now I have a place to start this Heart-to-Heart with myself. Hmm, I guess I’ll continue with each word in order and dive deeper into my Self, to see what’s the source of my problems and hopefully, I can fix this and bring balance and peace back into my life.

A Heart to Heart with Myself

Heh, I got into another argument with Siry yesterday, and the question my sister asked me afterwards was, “How can you let a 10 year-old get under your skin?” The exhaustion throughout was driving all of us to the point of frustration, so naturally a heart-to-heart talk arose. My Sister, my Bro-in-Law, Greggy, and myself were all trying to find out what it was, that was causing my short fuse, my lack of patience and what not.

After about 3-4 hours of conversation, we wound up at the discovery that I need to learn to let go and let God guide me.

Now this is something that resonated with me… Well, more like slapped me in the face.

“To let go” and have God guide my every step, to disregard all of my plans (what little plans I had) and to just live? All my years of praying and volunteering, thinking that this is what would bring me closer to God and that… isn’t it.

That is to say, that these aren’t good things, because helping others is always a good thing, however, the question here is internal, it’s spiritual. My prayers were always ritualistic, I prayed the Rosary every night, that would be perfect if my mind didn’t wonder onto random things during the prayers, which would make the words I spoke empty. So it’s not like praying a Rosary was a bad thing, but it wasn’t the best thing for me either. I was wondering which was more significant, a normal prayer or a Rosary? And as it turns out, a heartfelt prayer, however brief, was far greater than an empty Rosary, as my words were genuine and not simply straight from rote memory.

But my answer lies elsewhere. I’m not letting God in the right way. There’s a part of me that’s hesitating as to what to do, and my logical mind isn’t helping either. I would think “to let go” would be to relax muscles or to take deep breaths, but that’s only the physical part, I need to let God take over my life and my decisions, but why am I having such a hard time trying to do so? I’ve looked up several ways to let God into my life, but I’ve yet to come up with a solution for me.

I’m going to take the next couple of days to reflect and find out exactly where I am with God, for I owe him everything.

Crossing the Path of an Urban Samurai

A few days ago, I came across a link on Facebook called, “Urban Samurai” piquing my interest for all occupations of servitude, the link took me to a website of a man who wished to study the morals and ethics of a Samurai and implement them unto his own life.

Heh heh, needless to say, I was hooked. Someone’s who’s path was similar to my own, at least on the Ethical level. Someone who wants to take a moral code from the past and live by it in the present, is someone I want to follow on their journey.

I’ve started reading his blog posts from the beginning and I already see a friend in this stranger, and it’s come to my attention that I need to start conducting myself in a manner similar to an adult.

I’ll always have things that fascinate me to the point where I’m mindlessly flailing my arms like a 5 year-old, but I need to start remembering that I have responsibilities towards others around me, particularly, Siry. Her growing pains tell me that I must be careful of how I treat others, how vital patience is, and how I need to act like a man, for the sake of a child.

A man doesn’t have a short temper, nor does he lose his cool when dealing with stressful situations, and is particularly kind to children, even when the children aren’t. But there is a lot missing between the man I want to be and the man that I am now, and this is a little unsettling for me. Obviously because I’m not the man that I want to be, but also because I know that I can be, and am simply not doing it. I’ts becoming more and more apparent that there are hundreds of opportunities to prove to myself that I’m a man/adult/grown-up, and a lot of these slip through my fingers for whatever pointless reason at the time.

So I’m feeling somewhat guilty for various reasons.

I need to learn to stop and think about what I say and do before I do it. On one of the first posts of the Urban Samurai, he writes about how the samurai take seven breaths before making a decision. 7 breaths between a good decision and a bad decision, between a good day and a bad day, between peace and regret.

This sounds like I’m going to need to do these in order to make life peaceful, but seven breaths can also be translated into a short prayer, or just a quick glance at the phone (without turning it on to distract me).

But the general concept is something that I’ve just realized is something that I don’t do anymore: Step outside of the world for a moment (or seven breaths) and just be. I used to imagine myself standing alone in a black room, with my eyes closed, this somehow rejuvenates my energy and I’m ready to tackle what lies ahead. It’s come to my attention that I don’t do that anymore (and that I say that too much), this helped me get through some tough times, I wonder how something so vital had slipped my mind.

I guess being a Samurai/Knight/Man requires a lot of effort especially towards conduct and self-restraint, but in the end, self-control will be one of the main traits I’ll need in nearly every level of my life.