All posts filed under: Inward

Falling off the wagon

These days, “falling of the wagon” means something different to each individual. For me, it represents a departure from the eating, exercise, meditation, and sleep foundation habits that I’ve worked hard to build into my life. Usually, it’s instigated by a change in routine that is either planned or unplanned. Routine changes can be as simple as a business trip or vacation, which send me off course in part because I use triggers and habit stacking to stay on track. A new environment or schedule sometimes doesn’t provide the prompts I’ve come to rely on to reinforce those healthy habits. Most of the time I can pick them back up upon my return, buy not always. Unanticipated life events can also disrupt the routine, particularly when they are emotionally charged. Both good and bad news have a tendency to throw a wrench in my plans because they encourage me to deviate from my regular schedule and set off a roller coaster of emotions. The impact of a single significant event is easier to identify, but often it’s the sum of several smaller events within a …

Vipassana meditation and seeds for innovation

First, here’s a high level summary of the technique and goal of Vipassana meditation as a primer. Basically, you use your own body sensations to internalize the belief of impermanence and stop the negative feedback loop of craving and aversion. You do this by first sharpening your mind to feel those sensations (using a separate meditation called Anapana Sati). You then use Vipassana to experience these sensations, both positive and negative, without reacting to them and maintaining equanimity. The long term goal is obviously enlightenment, but the byproduct is an extremely sharp mind that is able to feel any sensation throughout the body and free of the emotional turmoil that cravings and aversions generate. The reason you look inward is because while concentrating on an object or word does help quiet a busy mind, it doesn’t allow you to sharpen it. Also, wisdom gained through first hand experience is the most tangible and visceral.Vipassana meditation experience As part of my self exploration process, I decided to attend a 10 day silent meditation retreat in Kandy, Sri …

88 Days and counting

It’s an auspicious day to start planning for my 2nd ultra marathon. It’s also worthwhile to look back and share lessons learned from my first multi-day race last fall, in the hopes that it will motivate me to do it all over again. Last November I competed in Action Asia’s Nepal 3 Day Ultra Marathon in the 60k category. When I signed up, I never expected to actually place. I wrote it down as a stretch goal in my training diary and quickly forgot. It wasn’t until 15 km into the first race day that the goal truly felt within reach. Race staff told me that the female front runner was only 100 meters ahead and openly laughed at my shock. While I never managed to catch her, I am extremely proud of my sub-12 hour time. The course and scenery were magnificent, with views of the Annapurna range and trails along terraced rice paddies. I’ve never been to Mongolia and can’t wait to run through it’s rugged landscape in June. This time I set myself a new stretch goal …

Designing a process for self exploration

Since a number of people have asked about my self exploration process and shared their desire to do some exploring themselves, I thought I’d write up my experience thus far. Not only is it helpful for me to document the process, but also reflect on it. I welcome any feedback and questions!Background My initial intention was to stay and grow with my previous company for many years. As soon as I realized that it wouldn’t be possible last August, I decided to leave. This gave me the unexpected opportunity to reflect on what was missing both personally and professionally. First and foremost, I allowed my health to deteriorate while I was working there. That’s why I made sleep, eating healthy and physical exercise such a priority for the first 3 months of my break. Then I tried my best to reflect on the professional experience and decided that I should evaluate my next role based on skill fit, team fit, and mission fit. At a minimum, I had to feel confident that I’d add significant value …