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Sisu 2 [ShadowLion]


ShadowLion

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This:
 


I've been contemplating this challenge, this year, this life, for quite some time now and this is the direction I want to go. In this case, music trumps language. There is a lot I can't put into words, but...
 

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The interweaving of the instruments and the various themes is how I want the various facets of my life to play together and support and harmonize with one another. The overall calmness, as the melody moves through various states of resolution and moods, is how I want to approach the uncertainties in my life right now. I hear definite echoes of what I am writing about in morning pages and in novels, in blog posts and in code.

For me, the Adagio creates an open and reflective mood that counters so much of the hurry and busyness that I struggle with, and the scenes of nature in this video centers me and soothes my soul.
 

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I had already determined that this challenge would be a continuation of last one's "Sisu" theme," and that I would be revisiting "STEAMS," and "Stupid Simple," (among others) again. Then, I realized I could alliterate. Win! :triumphant:
 

Sisu, the Second - ShadowLion's Systematic, Sustainable, STEAMS Six S's...

 

STOP!!!

 

Start simplifying, ShadowLion!

 

That makes sense. So, I settled for a subtler signifier.

 

Alliteration I resolved to routinely eschew.

Rhyming, instead, I would try to pursue.

Surely not as sophisticated as true Haiku...

Hey! I'm a Shadow Lion,

What'd you expect me to do?

 

Sisu...2

 

(Ssssongwriting?)

 

 

 

This is certainly a silly start for a such a salubrious subject. Seems to be a side-effect of significant stress and simply too much sitting in front of a screen - slumped, staring, and slack-jawed - still seeking some elusive synthesis of sinew, synapse, and soul.

Expect this cycle to showcase similar semantic excursions (sins, perchance?) as those seen thus far. (ShadowLion fancies herself a scrivener, she does.) She has set up a schedule centered upon the spewing and scribbling of significant sums of words, side by side with a series of simple, structured scenarios designed to foster sustainable success!

Okay. Time to get serious...
 

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Sisu, by way of another definition:
 

Sisu runs even deeper than grit. It is a type of mental toughness that allows you to bear the burden of your responsibilities, whatever they happen to be, with a will and perseverance that is unbreakable. It is the ability to sustain your action and fight against extreme odds. Sisu extends beyond perseverance. It is what you rely on when you feel like you have nothing left. ~James ClearInterestingly enough, Emilia Lahti, a noted researcher specializing in "sisu" and grit, has reworked her blog since the beginning of the last challenge and has dubbed 2015 "The Year of Sisu." I discovered this when I was thinking about how to frame my challenges for the rest of the year. Sisynchronicity. Click on the picture to go to her site...
 

 

 

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In the spirit of challenges past, I have created an acronym to help me focus on specific aspects of this year's theme:
 

Small (yet significant)

Increments,
Sustainable (in spite of)
Uncertainty



Last challenge was fairly successful and it jolted me out of a rut. I decided that I wanted to continue exploring "sisu, " while I look for a “bigger box†in which to put my challenges. I often have trouble determining the optimum scope of my challenges (work and life goals, too, for that matter), stuffing too many things into too small of a box and then getting frustrated, losing focus, or getting injured from trying to do too much.
 

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This time I am going for a more spacious container with fewer things in it. I am also breaking out of the usual order, categories and “weighting†of goals, even playing a bit fast and loose with the grading system. I've fallen into a bit of a negative, "I need to fix it NOW†mentality, which I suspect has had something to do with the amount of injuries I have sustained. I'm going to experiment with a more inspirational approach. More carrot, less stick. Let’s see how it works!

Disclaimer: This is my 13th challenge and I have followed the challenge rules pretty closely to date. I don't recommend what I am trying unless you have successfully done a number of challenges and have a specific reason to alter your approach. (I am quite open to the possibility I may fail or need to go back to the tried and true method before this is all over...)
 

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To help me maintain my focus, I am dividing my challenge into four parts, each with it’s own goal and particular approach or mindset. This is based on the particular spiritual path I follow, where a person is seen as having the following four aspects:
 


Body - The body and it’s various energies and systems and qualities, intimately connected to the earth/environment;

one’s vehicle of action, expression; the extension/carrier/reflection of consciousness

Mind - The intellect and the emotions; memory; learning; basic waking consciousness

Soul - The seat of intuition, imagination and creativity; the synthesizer of experience;

the point where individual consciousness and the collective unconscious meet

Spirit - The still point within; transcendent wisdom; unitive consciousness

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Along with these (somewhat artificial and arbitrary) divisions, there are also four major ways of encountering the world. I'm going to gamify those and call them "Warrior," "Scholar," "Magician," and "Healer."

For ease of focus and experiment's sake, I am going to put one aspect and one approach in each "box," then turn the usual westernized hierarchical approach to being upside down and inside out.

Let's see the boxes as overlapping circles, or - better yet - connected spheres, each relating to the others in various ways, without one or another taking precedence. Each interacts and effects all the others. Still with me? Good. This is Nerdville with a capital N, and a big dose of string theory and mysticism thrown in!

Now that the theoretical matrix is decided, and SISU kept in mind, on to the Goals... emphasis on the inside, the attitude, the approach.
 

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1) Spirit/Warrior - Single-mindedness. 2 minutes per day, every single day, structured meditation. 42 days straight. Simple. Hard.



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2) Soul/Magician - Average 500 words per day of the challenge. (This would result in ~21,000 words written.) These can be morning pages, blog posts, whatever. Additional words or novel writing = bonus. Every day.



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3) Mind/Scholar - 10 minutes per day practicing a skill requiring intellectual or emotional exertion. 42 days straight. Additional time or skill = bonus.



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4) Body/Healer - 5 minutes per day/5 days per week of outdoor exercise. Yoga, tai chi, bellydance, and/or rehab/prehab work count. Extras/bonuses can be more time on any of the things listed, and/or strength or endurance exercises related to fire fitness.

I have not given up on my fire fitness goals. I am just taking a different approach this time. Likewise, I am still committed to the same goal weight and body fat percentage as previous challenges. The results of this challenge should let me get back to those in a new, more effective way next challenge. (I hope.)



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I can do more, but I must do the minimum as set forth. To count, the above must be entered in my journal/spread sheet daily and updates posted here at least twice per week.

For purposes of this experiment, I will take my weight and measurements as per usual to track if I continue on the desired trajectory, and at what pace, while I change up my methods.This will allow me to alter the above structure mid-course, if needed.
 

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I am not going to grade by the usual measuring stick. I am setting a single (!) baseline habit per category. It is all or nothing. Each tiny habit, each day, just as I would brush my teeth, take a shower, eat. This is about absolute consistency. While I am not leaving wiggle room on the consistency, I am being realistic about time and building in variety. I hope that I have that balance right!

This baseline is intentionally set quite low in order to incentivize further action and encourage exploration without setting me off on a course where I push too hard and injure myself again.

 

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The indicator that I may be on to something is that I had an awful time setting my requirements. Everything felt far too low and I had a great deal of resistance to it, especially picking only one thing per category.

Oh, and since St. Paddy's Day will fall within this challenge and we must have cats on this thread....
 

  • Like 7

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

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Guys, guys! Look what I found!

There are lots of forests in Finland...which means there are forest fires, which means there are fire trucks...wildland fire fighting trucks...and you will never, ever, in a thousand years guess the brand name - ha!

:triumphant::triumphant::triumphant:

SISU FIRE TRUCKS ARE A REAL THING!

(And any ShadowLion challenge without TRUCK PORN is a sub-standard challenge...)

:triumphant::triumphant::triumphant:

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:triumphant: Just take a look at that hood... Sisu! This made my day! :triumphant:

  • Like 9

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

Sisu, ef yeah! ^^

Love the baseline goals, SL. It's always good to get back to basics.

  • Like 1

Level 0 Air Nomad Assassin
STR: 0 STA: 0 DEX: 0 CON: 0 WIS: 0 CHA: 0

Current Challenge: [Url= http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/80570-phayze-accepts-an-apprenticeship-as-an-airbender-respawn/]Apprentice Airbender![/url]

Check Out My LEGO Stuff on Flickr!
"The next golden age of human achievement begins here and now" -Neil Degrasse Tyson, Cosmos

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Basic it be... :) Time to see how this experiment works!

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

OOOOHHHH - Foreign Fire Trucks!!  Can that be a theme??

  • Like 1

Some sort of Jedi .....

We are better than we know, if we can be made to see it, [then] for the rest of our lives, we'll be unwilling to settle for less.  

Current Challenge: Return of the Persistent Priestess

Past Challenges: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35. 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42

"No, I'm from Iowa.  I only work in outer space." -- James T. Kirk

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OOOOHHHH - Foreign Fire Trucks!!  Can that be a theme??

 

Oh, yes... Expect to see more "SISU" fire trucks this challenge!

 

 

Sounds like we should start a funding project or something... When's your birthday again? :D

 

Late August. :)

 

 

Love it! Simple but hard.

 

How are you doing physically? Are you still needing to do a lot of re-hab, or can you exercise fairly normally, as long as you are careful?

 

Yeah. This one is aimed right at the heart of the difficulties. Doing well with the back and have renewed the exercises that kicked that problem off. Everything seems to be going well, as I am progressing more gradually with the stretching, postures, twisting movements now. My knee still clicks, so focusing on walking, biking over jogging still, and Tai Chi for stability progress. Going slow - literally - and think that should make a re-introduction to jogging happen sometime this challenge.

 

 

Sisu sounds exciting. You're gonna rock it this time.

 

Exciting and tough - Thanks!

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

The Strategy


My reasoning in changing up my challenge in this way is twofold. One, I know I am going to have a very heavy workload the next couple of challenges and I needed to adapt to that. Two,
in analyzing my successes and failures over thirteen challenges, I saw a pattern to where I tend to struggle.

That pattern is that I work my challenge goals in and around work, then end up often staying up late in an attempt to get everything done. That is a symptom of something more fundamental, however.

The root of the problem is that I will do all the things that revolve around other people first, then fit in what I need to do for myself after that. That leads to all sorts of stress, scheduling, and sleep problems. And, probably the most difficult for me to change, as it also goes against some of my personality traits and long-standing habits, is to have a lot of inconsistencies in my challenges. I go full out, get a lot done, then get injured or have a massive fail day, then have to get back on track.

It is something that needs to change. I tend to feel like putting time for me upfront in the day is selfish or not practical, but I think it is the only way to successfully break this cycle. The solution appears to be to go quite small with my challenge goals - 10% to 20% of what my ultimate aim is - and establish a rock solid base of consistency.

So, I have decided to make my goals so easy and small that I can do them before the busyness of the day begins. I've structured this challenge so that I can do my baseline challenge in just under a half hour. If I have more time then, or later, great! I can do more.

But, here comes the kicker... I must do each one every day of the challenge to earn my points. No A,B,Cs, no partial points, no sick days or crisis days. Each goal is easy individually, but it is going to take some real SISU to do them all in aggregate, every single day. (Stealing ideas and inspiration on consistency from you, Jakkals!)

I have committed myself to this course of action knowing that "life happens" and I gave that a great deal of consideration. I can break the sequence up, if need be. I can space it through the day or even do it just before bed if that is what needs to happen. Nothing is more than ten minutes at a time for the minimum. That should be doable, in some way, no matter what.

I started yesterday on my trial run and am nearly done for today. So far so good. That will give me 44 days straight until the end of the challenge. If I make it until then, I am considering continuing it for a total of 99 days, which would take me up to my Nerd Fitness birthday, May 30. Now that would be SISU!
  • Like 2

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

OMFG DAT TRUCK.  Wow.  Finland is pretty awesome.  And so are you, and so is this challenge!  I really, really like what you've set up here, and I agree - simple is hard.  This is a true task of SISU that you have set for yourself, and the changes you make here are going to be so sustainable! Rock-solid foundations, GO!

 

Also, I'm exited to see the Return to Jogging - a benchmark to celebrate when you reach it!  

 

Subbed (duh) and eagerly awaiting updates!

  • Like 1

LEVEL ONE APPRENTICE WIZARD RANGER: HUMAN UNTIL PROVEN OTHERWISE

 

Achievements Unlocked:  Breakfast Warrior, Pushupapalooza, Quadruple Nanomaster, Return From the Dead, Gainful Employment, Leap of Faith, Minimalism Game, Get Thee Behind Me, Coffee, Camp Nerd Fitness 2015, Return From the Dead 2: The Undeadening, Gainful Employment 2: Boss Edition, Fancy Comics Person, Rogue Hair

 

Tumblr of VERY INTERESTING ART: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/radicalwizardtimes

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Can you guys help me with something?

 

I'm doing a branding exercise today and need input from people who know me in a variety of different contexts. Since my startup is primarily web-based, it makes sense to get feedback from people who know me digitally as well as irl, right?

 

It's pretty simple really. Just describe your impressions of me using three adjectives. I then compile and analyze them for clues to my strengths and decide what I want to emphasize in my online identity.

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

OMFG DAT TRUCK.  Wow.  Finland is pretty awesome.  And so are you, and so is this challenge!  I really, really like what you've set up here, and I agree - simple is hard.  This is a true task of SISU that you have set for yourself, and the changes you make here are going to be so sustainable! Rock-solid foundations, GO!

 

Also, I'm exited to see the Return to Jogging - a benchmark to celebrate when you reach it!  

 

Subbed (duh) and eagerly awaiting updates!

 

Today's update: I am three for three (started roadtesting Saturday) on all SISU goals. So far, so good!

 

The trucks. Tomorrow is Truck Porn Tuesday!

 

 

subbed <3

 

Heya, Aelinn! This is the challenge were we cave dwellers come out of HIBERNATION and start to shed our winter fat!

 

 

 

Subbed :)

 

Hey - another kitty! *Purr. Head butt.*

  • Like 1

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

It's pretty simple really. Just describe your impressions of me using three adjectives. I then compile and analyze them for clues to my strengths and decide what I want to emphasize in my online identity.

 

I'm going with intelligent, multifaceted, and stalwart. But it was hard to pick only 3.

 

(Bonus: I looked up stalwart to make sure it meant what I meant... and "lionhearted" is given as a synonym!)

  • Like 1
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dedicated, versatile, wise.  Can I add ultra-awesome? Possibly also BAMF-itude?

  • Like 1

LEVEL ONE APPRENTICE WIZARD RANGER: HUMAN UNTIL PROVEN OTHERWISE

 

Achievements Unlocked:  Breakfast Warrior, Pushupapalooza, Quadruple Nanomaster, Return From the Dead, Gainful Employment, Leap of Faith, Minimalism Game, Get Thee Behind Me, Coffee, Camp Nerd Fitness 2015, Return From the Dead 2: The Undeadening, Gainful Employment 2: Boss Edition, Fancy Comics Person, Rogue Hair

 

Tumblr of VERY INTERESTING ART: https://www.tumblr.com/blog/radicalwizardtimes

Link to post

Oh fun - It's "nerd association" instead of "word association"!

SL is determined, introspective and ambitious.

  • Like 2

Level 0 Air Nomad Assassin
STR: 0 STA: 0 DEX: 0 CON: 0 WIS: 0 CHA: 0

Current Challenge: [Url= http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/80570-phayze-accepts-an-apprenticeship-as-an-airbender-respawn/]Apprentice Airbender![/url]

Check Out My LEGO Stuff on Flickr!
"The next golden age of human achievement begins here and now" -Neil Degrasse Tyson, Cosmos

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It's pretty simple really. Just describe your impressions of me using three adjectives. I then compile and analyze them for clues to my strengths and decide what I want to emphasize in my online identity.

I suppose "awesome" is expected, common and generic for a word around these parts.

 

SL is wise, caring and determined

  • Like 1
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I'm seeing a pattern throughout everyones challenges of going back to basics and taking time for yourself.  I am liking this :) I also thoroughly enjoyed reading your original post.  I've been meditating a lot lately and getting very into mindfulness so the whole world view you have here is incredibly interesting.  Also I love the nerdy assignments you gave each of the four parts of self! Hahah.

 

Overall, I think this is a great way to switch things up and get back to your roots to ensure you're really doing what's best for you.  Best of luck!

 

PS - A SISU Firetruck? Clearly this was all meant to be.

  • Like 2
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It's Tuesday, and you know what that means....

 

TRUCK PORN TUESDAY

 

Helsinki Fire responding to a call. A Mercedes-Benz ambulance, then a Scania engine...followed by a SISU aerial.

 

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

Link to post

I'm going with intelligent, multifaceted, and stalwart. But it was hard to pick only 3.

 

(Bonus: I looked up stalwart to make sure it meant what I meant... and "lionhearted" is given as a synonym!)

 

Thank you! Love the lion-hearted synonym!

 

dedicated, versatile, wise.  Can I add ultra-awesome? Possibly also BAMF-itude?

 

Thanks, rowan!

 

Oh fun - It's "nerd association" instead of "word association"!

SL is determined, introspective and ambitious.

 

Or, perhaps, we're playing "Nerd Words?" Thank you!

All men dream, but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds, wake in the day to find that it was vanity:

but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act on their dreams with open eyes, to make them possible.

~T. E. Lawrence

 

When we contemplate the whole globe as one great dewdrop, striped and dotted with continents and islands,

flying through space with other stars all singing and shining together as one, the whole universe appears as an infinite storm of beauty. 
~John Muir

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