Cellphones Are Ruining Your Memories

Yesterday was my last day of my arduous university education. As I walked down the aisle adorned in a black and maroon gown, I noticed something strange.

Hundreds of parents proudly staring at their accomplished children, but not with their eyes, but through their tiny pixelated camera and cellphone screens.

Through their four-inch screens, they attempt to record and capture every single moment.

We have forgotten how to record treasured moments with our hearts and eyes. Instead of experiencing new delicacies, events, concerts and treasured memories first-hand, we choose to stare into our little screens to record and photograph every moment.

Moments are once in a lifetime

Why does time seamlessly pass as we age? Because somewhere along the line we forgot to savor the current moment.

We have become so caught up in capturing and immortalizing these experiences to share with our friends and family, that we forgot to immortalize them in our hearts.

Our memories of events are distant blurs because we never really experienced them. We view our most treasured memories through LCD screens.

We forget that moments can never truly last forever unless we experience them first-hand. Through human experience, they are immortalized.

When we proudly share our feelings of the moment they are solidified in our memories.

There will never be another university graduation, first birthday party or concert, the exact same as the previous one. These little moments, the minor alterations, are what makes our memories memorable.

No amount of recapping through our cellphones and cameras will make us relive that memory.

Truly savoring the moment first-hand is the unparalleled power of human experience. Truly being able to see, hear and feel the emotion and intensity in a room is what creates true memories.

Use technology sparingly

There is a fine line between excessive use and under-use. Everything in life is a spectrum. Too much technology limits the creation of true memories, while no technology reduces the ability to share our experiences.

We shouldn’t destroy our cellphones and revert back to the Stone Age. But we also shouldn’t use technology as a placeholder for the human experience.

We understand our devices are important for contacting loved ones, scheduling, recording memories and occasionally playing Clash of Clans. But that line is severely crossed when we spend the majority of a would-be treasured event experiencing it through four-inch screens.

So before we indulge in breath-taking food, enjoy our favorite musicians, or experience once-in-a-lifetime events, let us be wary of our devices, be grateful for the moment and begin to truly appreciate all that surrounds us.

Until next time, my beautiful readers,

Be bold, be free, and love on.

How To Deal With Regret

Sometimes I ask myself – “do you feel like you should be different? Or act differently? Or feel differently?”

I don’t know if everyone asks himself or herself the same questions. Maybe you can quell my thoughts in the comments section below.

Recently, I’ve come to a realization. Everything that I have been through – the ups, the downs, the struggles and turmoil and everything in between – have made me the person I am today.

Regret is insignificant. No matter how hard we try, at this very moment, nothing about the past can be undone.

Regret is backward thinking

When you look to the past for answers, you are fighting an uphill battle. You desperately struggle as you battle the ravaging tides and the harsh winds.

Eckhart Tolle believes your egoic won’t let the past go because it needs it to feel alive. Your egoic mind wants to feel significant so it latches onto the past.

It keeps you living and thinking backward. It holds you in a troubled state. Your relationships, your work, and worst of all, yourself, crumble as you’re suspended in ‘regret thought-processes.’

The more you dwell in the past, the stronger your egoic mind grows. Like a feral animal, the more meat you give, the more it wants.

Present is forward-thinking

This very moment is all we have left. This very moment is the only one that can be changed, cherished and adored.

Even as write this, moments pass. The less I regret, the less I dwell, the more seamlessly the present moment passes.

There is little time to regret. In this very moment, there is only time to be content.

Be grateful that you are alive and breathing. Be content with the ability to think clearly and feel wholly.

Any room for future thinking?

Future thinking will also ruin you. Future thinking is just as toxic as regret.

Currently the future does not matter. Even as you begin to say the word fu-ture that first syllable is forever lost in the past.

That syllable should be let go, just as the future should.

The Love Exercise

There is no room for regret in this moment. Instead, spend a little time just being. Spend some time appreciating the person you are – maybe it’s your hair, eyes, or your brain.

Or pat yourself on the back for a small win – maybe it’s your first day sticking to a new diet or maybe you made it an entire day without having a cigarette.

This is an exercise I frequently do to avoid regret. The idea occurred to me after reading Love Yourself Like Your Life Depends On It by Kamal Ravikant.

He was at the point of killing himself because of all the common pressures that plague us – lack of love, security, support and freedom – until one day he decided to look into the mirror and say “I love you” over and over again.

He cured himself through positive reinforcement. I find that the same works with regret. Spend time today, and every single day, to giving yourself trying the Love Exercise.

Soon you will regret less and your egoic mind will detach. You will begin to love the person you are. You will begin to appreciate the present moment.

I wish nothing but amazing vibes to all our readers. I know whatever plagues you – whether regret, pain, or the future – you will overcome it.

And if you need a little push along the way, 2HelpfulGuys is here for anything.

Until next time my beautiful readers,

Be bold, be free and love on.

Three Keys To Improving ANY Relationship

Improving relationships with friends and significant others is a common goal amongst people. People want to connect more with others, on a deeper level.

That has led me to consciously consider my interactions and change them. It begins with having a good intention.

We meet great people and we’re so overwhelmed with excitement. We build this amazing relationship with that person and everything is great.

But then, the excitement dwindles and we get caught in a routine and we start to develop little pet peeves. That initial spark is forgotten. That zest of why the person was great eventually fades.

To create, improve or rejuvenate a once great relationship, your intention must be to be great. You have to make the other person feel great. You have to make the other person feel appreciated and loved. It’s difficult and we all fail, but I think these three methods can strengthen and improve any relationship.

Key #1 –  Be Present

I went out with this girl for coffee. Midway through, her phone rang and she was on it for 15 minutes, as I stared in dismay. After her social call, she couldn’t let go of her phone, constantly texting or fiddling.

She was sharing her eye contact between her phone and I. She couldn’t give me her undivided attention for longer than three minutes. I find that incredibly problematic.

Most issues in relationships are caused by a lack of attention. You cannot show respect to someone, pick up on peoples’ non-verbal cues or feelings and completely understand the other person unless you’re completely present in their lives.

But, you can stand out. You can be the anomaly. Make a meaningful connection with your eyes and body, be present and envelope them with your unhindered presence.

Leave your phone on silent when you’re with loved ones. Or just leave it at home, and go for a walk with the person. Give them your undivided attention and they will understand how much they mean to you.

The cellphone ding makes people feel important, but what’s more important than the person across from you sharing a coffee right now?

Key #2 – Appreciate Them

Most people get wrapped up in the idea that appreciation involves extravagant gifts or these large spectacles like writing ‘thank you” in the sky. I thought I needed those to show people how much I cared for them.

But people don’t want your gifts. They just want to be appreciated, appreciated for all the little things they do, and feel and, most importantly, appreciated for who they are.

Appreciate who they are as a human being and, above all, be there for them. Be there when they need you, and be there even when they don’t.

Through all their ‘ups’ and ‘downs’ and trials and tribulations, they want to know that you’re there and that you truly care.

The people in your life want to feel your real appreciation. Thank you loses its’ meaning the more you say it. Instead, say ‘I appreciate you for…’

Key #3 – Make Complimenting a Daily Habit

There is a lot of power in words and they often get taken for granted. We think nice things about our friends and significant others, but rarely express them.

It seems like criticism gets more of the spotlight than compliments. In reality, compliments should be dominating the life-stage.

We’ve become people that forgot how to say nice things. When was the last time you complimented your friend or significant other? Personally, it has been three days and that’s a long time to hold nice comments in.

Make it a daily habit, or instead, a challenge, to compliment someone you care about. Solidify it into your daily routine and don’t feel completely fulfilled until you’ve made someone’s day through your words.

Say something meaningful and unique to make each compliment really matter. Make the person in your life feel like there is no one else deserving of those words in that very moment. True compliments arise from love and adoration.

This is the hardest step of the three because it requires both of the above steps. You need to be present to recognize the little quirks and you need to be able to appreciate that person for who they are.

These methods will change and impact your relationships in a very significant way. They are simple and just require a little presence, appreciation, and daily kind words.

Be bold, be free, and love on.

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3 Ways to Optimize Your Life

“Leroy, your article is late. Why?”

I can make all sorts of excuses for why this is late. But I’d like to spare you all the excuses. I don’t like making excuses for my shortcomings. Any sort of rationale I offer will sound like an excuse

“I was busy last night. I couldn’t write. I didn’t have a topic. I wasn’t thinking about it. It slipped my mind.”

All those can be reasonable excuses, but instead I offer an apology. Sorry.

Now that the unpleasant moment is out of the way, I’d like to offer you three ways to optimize your life today.

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1) Avoid time travelling

The past problems are behind you. While they may influence who you are and what you stand for, they do not matter. No amount of energy spent can change the past, the relationships, struggles, turmoil and anguish.

Time travelling only has negative effects.

“But Leroy, what if I only think about positive moments?”

Speaking for myself – and I’d like to think it’s the same for the general population – my brain usually focuses on my mistakes/problems. Unless, I focus on the positive in my past, it usually centered on the negative.

Instead, live now. I had a lot of problems in my past, but at this current time, in this current moment, nothing is wrong. That’s a good feeling to have. I have energy, focus and happiness with that thought.

I implore you focus on now.

2) Avoid the news

The news is filled with so much negativity, gossip and drama. Personally, I do not need any extra fuel to my fire. Most news is reported by very bad reporters who are encouraged to use scare tactics to keep you in submission and slavery.

While it is incredibly important to stay informed of current issues, in my opinion, mainstream media is not a suitable outlet. It’s biased and often depicting a one-sided story.

The majority of news is a downer. I propose looking at news from different categories (science, (green) technology, business, etc.) Focus on positive aspects of the news such as breakthroughs.

3) Ask questions

Children have a crap-load of questions. You can assume one of two things: Children are stupid or children are smart.

If you assume children ask a lot of questions because they are stupid and know nothing, I’d like to humbly disagree with you.

I think children ask multiple questions because they know nothing, but want to know more. Questions are the foundation of learning. Questions are how children learn.

As adults, we don’t ask enough questions. As self-entitled adults we think we know it all. We think that help isn’t necessary.

“Everyone you will ever meet, knows something you don’t.” –Bill Nye

Question everyone and listen avidly. Everyone goes through different experiences in their lives and can offer varied responses. I will ask more questions everyday.

There are many other ways to optimize your life. If you want more of this, please leave a comment below and I’ll definitely write another article on it. Additionally, I’d like to invite you to leave specific topics that you would like me to cover for future posts.

Be bold, be free, and love on.

The Two Voices of The Body

One lives in the heart and the other in the brain. The heart voice says, “Trust yourself and be bold,” while the brain voice says, “You can’t do it. You might as well just give up.”

I deal with self-doubt every single day of my life. It takes over my brain and body and before long; my thoughts began to wander to the ‘dark side.’ I start questioning my abilities, strengths, and aspirations.

“When you doubt your power, you give power to your doubt” – Honore de Balzac

I enter into a state of disarray, constantly questioning myself. I’m riddled with rationalizations, instead of solutions, for the problems in my life.

I’ve been running this blog for nearly two months now and I feel relieved. I have lasted this long. But, without fail, before I hit publish, terrible feelings surface from my brain.

What if people don’t like me? What if people don’t like what I have done? What will they think?

These terrible thoughts circle my head. It pushes me to the point where I can barely function. But then, I hit publish and the other voice surfaces. I get a short-lived feeling of happiness, before the endless doubt surfaces.

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The voices wage endless wars amongst themselves. I feel like I have some control over them. I use these techniques to tame my brain voice.

A) Ground Yourself

Live in the present moment. Self-doubt arises from past experiences or future problems/hindrances. The past and the future simply do not matter now. Now is the only moment that matters.

The past is unchangeable and irreversible and the future never actually arrives. Instead, the future is comprised of a series of ‘nows.’ ‘Now’ is the only time that truly matters, as it inevitably and continually occurs.

At this present moment, I am not hungry or thirsty. I am relatively happy. My body is functioning optimally (or as optimally as I think). I am able to think clearly. These are the positives occurring right now. Staying present is key to being able to focus on the positives, right now.

B) Have a Kit-Kat

Or any chocolate bar. The choice of chocolate really does not matter. The only thing that matters is taking a break. If you are feeling overwhelmed, take some time away from the project.

Sometimes, writing one article takes several days because I just can’t handle the content. My brain voice tells me, “Your content sucks. Your examples suck. Why do you even bother writing?”

Shifting your focus away from what we are stuck on helps us take a new perspective when we come back to it.

C) Feign Confidence

The seeds of self-doubt are strongest in my life as it pertains to girls. Girls will eternally confuse me. The self-doubt is rooted in a lack of confidence.

I recently started talking to a girl (big news, I know). But the whole concept of texting, mixed signals and smileys furthers the self-doubt.

What impresses her? Does she like me? Will she like me?

Flying, X-ray vision, and super strength are all great powers. But I want what Mel Gibson got when he electrocuted himself in a hot tub. I feel like that would be the ultimate power.

Feigning confidence is my method to dealing with the endless doubt that women bestow on me. Screw listening to your brain voice and let the confidence arise from your heart voice.

Be wary when feigning confidence. Sometimes, it can be misconstrued as cocky. Be genuine, be bold, and be truthful. Everything will work out. That is what I tell myself everyday.

The brain voice is strong some days, but I feel like I can persevere. I feel like I can let my heart voice take control. The seeds of self-doubt are implanted in everyone equally. Some people just have better control over them.

Like flowers, a lack of attention will never allow them grow. Pay no attention to doubt, avoid negative thoughts, take a step back, and feign confidence. I promise those seeds will wither and die.

What helps you overcome doubt in your abilities?

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