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Mentally Recharging

It’s easy to become bogged down by the routines of daily life. We all have the good and bad habits that we fall back on without even thinking about it. But sometimes, it’s essential to take a step back and mentally reset yourself. This can be done in several ways, but the most effective is often to change your environment. If you can get away from your normal surroundings and spend some time in a new place, you can open yourself up to new possibilities and see things in a different light. This can help you break out of any ruts you may have fallen into and start fresh.

In a recent survey, hundreds of high-performing upper management personnel were surveyed. The results were astounding. To stay mentally sharp, the high performers overwhelmingly chose activities that included an element of solitude.

Whether knowingly or not, the findings are consistent with zen philosophy. The goal of zen is to achieve a state of mind called “mushin,” which can be translated as “no mind.” This state is characterized by complete focus and concentration on the present moment. To achieve mushin, zen practitioners engage in activities that require complete focus and attention, such as meditation.

While the survey did not specifically ask about meditation, it’s clear that the respondents who reported the most significant mental productivity were those who had found a way to balance social and solitary activity in their lives.

Respondents reported participating in activities such as motorcycling, fly-fishing, and listening to music through headphones: no work e-mails, no phone calls, just themselves.

The key is to find an activity that allows you to focus entirely on the present moment without distractions. This could be anything from painting to hiking to playing a musical instrument. The important thing is that it’s something you enjoy and can do regularly.

Mentally disconnecting is often underrated. It can be so important to take some time for yourself, just step away from everything and relax. This can be especially beneficial if you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed out.

It’s also important to remember that mentally disconnecting doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. You can spend time with friends or family or simply enjoy peace and quiet. Whatever you do, make sure to take some time for yourself every day. The point is to find a way to disconnect from the stressors of life.

There are a lot of benefits to mentally disconnecting. For one, it can help reduce stress levels. It can also give you some much-needed time to reflect on your life and figure out what’s important to you. Additionally, it can help boost your mood and improve your overall outlook on life.

Mentally recharging allows us to hit the reset button and start fresh. It’s an integral part of maintaining our mental health and well-being. Maintaining our mental health and well-being allows us to continue to be there for other people. Whether we are first responders, parents, friends, etc., we need to be able to maintain ourselves and guide others where we can.

Student Loan Economics

Student Loan Economics

Usually, I don’t write blog posts that could be construed as supporting or being critical of political parties or politicians. However, I think it’s important to talk about the issue of student loan forgiveness. The Biden administration’s recent announcement of up to $10,000 in student loan forgiveness has divided the nation. Some people believe this is a significant step forward and will help many struggling Americans to pay off their student loans. Others think that this is another example of the government giving handouts to people who didn’t work hard enough to earn their degrees or as an act of buying votes.

There are valid points on both sides of the argument. However, I want to focus on the economics of student loan forgiveness and the odd timing of the announcement.

Economics of a Functioning Society

To keep things simple, let’s look at healthcare. We all know that health care costs are soaring. The rising healthcare costs have made it nearly impossible for lower-income households to obtain adequate care under the current system. We don’t discuss nearly enough how those rising costs affect society as a whole.

Rising healthcare costs don’t just make it difficult for people to afford health care. They also make it difficult for businesses to afford to offer health insurance to their employees.

Supply and Demand of Healthcare

The typical fix for the rising healthcare costs is to give more free or subsidized access to lower-income earners. This helps to ameliorate the effects on society but does little to fix the healthcare system itself.

The number of providers limits the healthcare system itself. Given the length of schooling and economic barriers to attending education, the system has an excess demand. The system was not created to handle the number of people trying to use it.

This is where student loan forgiveness comes in.

If we re-think the healthcare model of dumping money into the demand side (ultimately driving up prices for all users) and focus on the supply side, we might be able to achieve something. By increasing providers, increasing medical facilities, and reducing barriers to becoming a healthcare provider, we would allow the market to correct itself.

The economics of a functioning society is tricky, but at their heart, they are about creating an environment where people can prosper.

Forgiving student loan debt would be a way to increase the number of healthcare providers and reduce the overall cost of healthcare.

The same argument could be made for pilots. This year (2022), Travelers have been bombarded with cancellations of flights leaving passengers stranded or vacations canceled.

The problem is a lack of pilots. Many people are critical of the airlines calling on them to hire more pilots. But it isn’t that simple. Becoming an airline pilot is a long and arduous process requiring time and money.

Pilot training is expensive.

Again, student loan forgiveness could be a way to increase the number of pilots and reduce the overall cost of travel.

The same argument can be made for other professions in high demand but with high entry barriers.

Economics of Student Debt

Proponents of student loan forgiveness argue that it will stimulate the economy by freeing up money for people to spend on other things. This is based on the theory of Keynesian economics, which says that consumer spending is the key driver of economic growth. By forgiving $10,000 in student loans, the thinking goes, borrowers will have more money to spend on other things, which will spur economic growth.

Critics of this argument point out that the vast majority of people with student loans are not in a position to make significant purchases like a house or a car. In addition, the money that would be freed up by loan forgiveness is not likely to be spent immediately, but would instead be saved or used to pay down other debts.

There is some evidence to support both sides of this argument. A study by the Federal Reserve Bank of New York found that people with student debt are more likely to delay major life milestones like buying a house or getting married. On the other hand, another study found that people who had their student loans forgiven were more likely to start businesses and increase their spending.

The jury is still out on whether student loan forgiveness will positively or negatively affect the economy. However, some other interesting aspects of this situation are worth considering.

Odd Timing

The timing of the announcement is curious. The same day the announcement was made, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell made a speech highlighting the need to keep interest rates high. The rationale was to curb inflation. Hence the odd timing. Suppose excess cash in an economy is driving up inflation. In that case, the Federal Reserve’s move to increase interest rates is a move to slow spending and reduce the amount of money in an economy. So, on the one hand, the government is announcing a policy to put more cash in Americans’ hands via student loan forgiveness. On the other hand, the Federal Reserve is trying to take away some of that cash by increasing interest rates.

The opposing financial policies could have interesting implications. If the Fed’s policy successfully slows economic growth, it could offset any stimulus effect of the student loan forgiveness. On the other hand, if the Fed’s policy fails and inflation does pick up, the extra cash from loan forgiveness could exacerbate the problem.

The announcement’s timing comes less than three months before the midterm elections. Some have accused the administration of trying to buy votes with this policy. It’s impossible to know the motivations behind the timing of the announcement. However, it is worth noting that this is not the first time a significant policy announcement has been made close to an election.

Final Thought

Student loan forgiveness is a complicated issue with pros and cons on both sides of the argument. However, some other interesting aspects of this situation are worth considering. The announcement timing is curious, to say the least, and could have negative implications for the economy if it is unsuccessful. Additionally, the policy may be an attempt by the administration to buy votes before the midterm elections. Despite these potential issues, student loan forgiveness could have a positive effect on the economy if it is implemented correctly.

Either way, I think it’s time we re-examine society’s goals. If we genuinely want affordable healthcare, let’s look at the supply side and invest there. Putting more strain on a broken system is unlikely to be a successful long-term solution.

On Motivation and Productivity

When it comes to getting things done, there seems to be a sweet spot for timing. You want to be productive, but you don’t want to overdo it and feel burned out. So what’s the right balance? How do you know when you’re in the zone?

Do feelings predicate action? We typically think that we are motivated when we FEEL like doing something. We feel like working out, so we are motivated to go to the gym. We feel like eating healthy and losing ten pounds. We feel like connecting with an old friend, so we call them.

What if the algorithm is wrong? What if doing predicates feelings?

In other words, take action first, and the motivation and feelings will follow. It’s the same reason we tell people struggling with depression to “fake it ’til you make it.” When we do things that make us happy, we USUALLY feel happier as a result. The problem is that when we’re depressed, it’s hard to do something that make us happy. That’s where the “faking it” comes in.

Theory: Doing something — anything — will eventually lead to a feeling of motivation. As long as you get started, the motivation will come.

This theory can be broken down into two parts:

1) Doing begets doing.

2) Feeling begets feeling.

Laws of inertia

When it comes to getting things done, the best way to get started is to start. Once you’re in motion, it’s much easier to keep going. And as you keep going, you’ll find that your motivation will begin to build. The same is true of feelings. When we take action and do something, we often find that our feelings start to change. We may not feel like working out at first, but after doing it for a while, we may see that our attitude has changed, and we enjoy it now.

If you want to be more productive and get things done, the best way to do it is to start. If you want to feel like going to the gym, go to the gym. The results you see will likely motivate you to come back again.

One way to control your time is to set a daily routine and stick to it. This will help you structure your day and make the most of your time.

Another way to be more productive is to batch similar tasks together. This means doing all of your errands at once or tackling all of your emails in one sitting. Batching can help you save time by eliminating the need to switch gears between different tasks.

You can also try setting a timer for yourself to help you stay focused on a task. Once the timer goes off, you can take a break or move on to something else. This can help you stay on track and avoid getting overwhelmed by a project.

And finally, remember that it’s okay to say no sometimes. You don’t have to do everything that’s asked of you.

Confidence Following Tragedy

Confidence has its roots in a Latin word. It is derived from confidentia, which means “to be bold” or “to have faith in.” In English, it was first used in the 1500s, and it means “a feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something.” Confidence is a crucial ingredient in success. It allows people to take risks and achieve their goals. Confident people tend to be happier and more successful than those who are not.

Confidence, unfortunately, has been used against successful people. People who are not confident will often try to bring others down to feel better about themselves. This is known as “sowing seeds of doubt.” However, confidence cannot be destroyed. It is a quality that comes from within and cannot be taken away. No matter what someone says or does, confidence will always exist. It is up to the individual to find and nurture it.

So, what is wrong with having trust in oneself? Plenty to an insecure person. Their ‘confidence’ borders on narcissism and is nothing more than a mask to hide feelings of inadequacy.

Insecurity is a virus that eats away at our confidence, making us question everything we do. It can make us shy away from opportunities and prevent us from achieving our goals. Insecurity can also cause us to doubt ourselves and our abilities.

A lack of self-esteem or self-worth often causes insecurity. This can be due to a number of factors, such as childhood experiences, bullying, or negative comments from others. If you are struggling with insecurity, it is essential to address the root cause. For first responders, self-confidence is key to success on the job. For individuals in a public safety profession, confidence can be the difference between life in death and a high-stress situation.

Unfortunately, confidence can be the first to escape our mental resilience arsenal following a traumatic event. Studies have shown that first responders who experience PTSD or other mental health conditions are more likely to suffer from low self-confidence. So, how can we build and maintain confidence following a traumatic event?

Acknowledge your feelings:

It is normal to feel scared, sad, or angry after a traumatic event. Give yourself time to process what happened. Most departments have debriefs or after-action reviews to process events. Do this at the individual level and be prepared to be open and honest with yourself.

Seek professional help:

A therapist can help you work through your feelings and develop healthy coping mechanisms. One of our goals at Frontline Freedom is to break the stigma associated with mental health. Remember, you are not broken. You are not an object. You are a human being. Human beings are social creatures. Talking is important. Talking to trained people on the best practices is even more critical.

Challenge negative thoughts:

Our thoughts influence our emotions and behavior. If you constantly think negative thoughts, it will be challenging to feel confident. Pay attention to your self-talk and challenge any unhelpful thoughts. Take the time to analyze each thought and ask yourself if it seems logical. We tend to catastrophize, which is a form of cognitive distortion.

Practice self-care:

Taking care of yourself physically and emotionally is crucial for maintaining confidence. Make sure to eat a healthy diet, exercise regularly, and get plenty of rest. When you don’t feel like doing something, that is the exact time to force yourself to act. There is a misconception that feelings drive actions. Motivation does not work that way. Actions drive feelings. If we aren’t motivated to eat right and exercise, we will likely wait around for the feelings of motivation to fix it for us. However, if we force ourselves to do those things, typically, the motivation to continue follows shortly after that.

These are just a few tips for maintaining confidence following a traumatic event. If you struggle to cope with your emotions, please reach out for help. There is no shame in seeking professional assistance. Remember, you are not alone.

As the healing process continues, there are things to keep in mind.

Practice self-compassion.

It is ok not to be ok. Don’t be too hard on yourself.

Give yourself time to succeed.

Don’t expect too much of yourself too quickly. Expect to have some reservations about certain actions or triggers. A specific building, smell, sight, etc., may trigger your anxiety. Expect that to happen. Be prepared for the occasional setback and be ready to talk about it with someone.

Celebrate your accomplishments.

We take things for granted sometimes. Simply walking into a restaurant may trigger us following a traumatic event. When you recognize that you can do things without thinking of them again, pause and take time to express self-gratitude. These are the signs that you are progressing.

Surround yourself with positive people.

We all need good influences. If we don’t surround ourselves with positive people, we cannot expect a positive result in life.

Above all else, trust.

Trust in yourself and your abilities. One of the first things in life taken from us following a tragedy is our confidence. Simply put, we stop trusting ourselves. We second guess everything. We get anxiety over the decisions we make. We listen to the doubts of those around us. What does that mean for our ability to live a full life?

It means we have to put in twice the effort. It means relearning how to trust not only ourselves but also the process. Trust that things will work out even when we can’t see how they could. Trust that we have what it takes to overcome any obstacle. Trust that we are capable of so much more than we think.

Start with trusting yourself enough to do the things you usually avoid because of a lack of confidence. If you’re afraid to speak in public, give a presentation. If you’re scared to try something new, sign up for a class. These small steps will build your confidence over time, and eventually, you’ll be able to do the things that once seemed impossible.

When we trust ourselves, our confidence grows. And with that growth comes a more positive outlook on life. We become less reactive and more proactive. We let go of the need to be perfect and learn to embrace our mistakes. We focus on what we can control and let go of the things we can’t. Most importantly, we learn to live in the present moment.

If you’re feeling lost or struggling with insecurity, the most important thing is to reach out for help. Talk to a friend, family member, therapist, or anyone who will listen. And remember, you are not alone. The more we share our struggles, the less power they have over us.

Daily Tasks of Successful People

People often wonder what it takes to be successful. Success is not an accident; it is the product of daily habits. If you want to be successful, you need to develop the proper habits and stick to them daily. Many different practices can help you achieve success, but eight of the most important ones are here.

1. Successful people read every day

Reading is one of the most important habits for success because it allows you to learn new information that you can use to improve your life. The more you read, the more opportunities open up for you. Those who are successful in their respective fields almost always spend time reading every day.

If you are looking to maximize your potential and jumpstart your journey, I recommend the following books:

  • Meditations – Marcus Aurelius
  • The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F**k – Mark Manson
  • Wealth of Nations – Adam Smith
  • How to Win Friends and Influence People – Dale Carnegie
  • Thinking Fast and Slow – Daniel Kahneman

2. Successful people write daily

Think about how much writing has been done by successful people throughout history? Some of the greatest works in all areas of study were written by authors who became famous precisely because they wrote well. Journaling, not just the ‘dear diary’ type, but actual reflective writing, is a sure-fire way to ensure you are successful. Writing things down helps us organize our thoughts, set goals, focus our energy, and put plans into action. Journaling has long been documented to help overall mental health.

I use the leuchtturm1917 classic A5 hardcover in black.

3. Successful people know that they have to set goals and take focused action every day

There is a strong link between setting goals, achieving those goals, and becoming successful. Those who want to become successful need to look at what it takes to reach those goals. They need to figure out the exact actions they need to take every day to achieve success. This is not as easy as it sounds because you can’t control everything that happens in your life each day. But you can control how much effort you put into making things happen by consistently taking focused action daily.

4. Successful people are always busy working on something important

The way successful people see it is when you stop working, you stop producing, and when you stop producing, you stop getting paid. Successful people find a way to keep working on something at all times. They manage their time effectively and set priorities to get the most important things done first no matter what is going on in their lives.

Scheduling specific times in your day to maintain your relationships is a critical factor to long-term success.

5. Successful people do not dwell on mistakes

Every day we face new setbacks, challenges, and even disappointments. The key to achieving success is not to give up when problems happen or when we fail; it’s about handling those obstacles. Those who achieve success learn from mistakes instead of discouraging them from quitting. They understand that every failure brings a lesson that can help them succeed next time. While others may see obstacles as reasons to give up, successful people see them as opportunities for success.

6. Successful people do not try to do everything themselves

No matter how talented and intelligent you may be, no one person has all the skills and knowledge required to succeed in life. It’s essential for those who want to achieve success to realize that we can’t become successful by doing everything ourselves; we need the help of other people. By surrounding yourself with other competent and supportive individuals, you’ll gain access to new ideas and information that will make your dreams come true. Pursuing success on your own is often a recipe for failure.

7. Successful people take care of their health every day

Successful individuals know that they must take care of their bodies to live healthy, productive life. They eat healthily, get plenty of sunshine and sleep, and exercise daily. Successful people know that they have more energy to be effective when they take care of their bodies.

8. Successful people do what is necessary, even if it’s difficult or uncomfortable

Success means achieving goals you set for yourself today and tomorrow. It means living a life worth celebrating. However, doing what is necessary every day makes this possible no matter how hard it may seem. We all have goals we want to achieve, but sometimes things pop up that seem to get in the way. That’s why successful people get up each day, expecting that today will be just another step towards success. The link between achieving what we want in life and making the sacrifices necessary is a fact.

9. Successful people think positively about their future

People who have been successful know that when you live in the past, it means there’s no hope for your future. They try not to dwell on what could have been or should have been because they know that you don’t get anywhere by looking back. To achieve success, you must maintain a positive mindset about your next steps and work hard towards them every day. When you start thinking negatively, you attract negative things into your life; but good things come into your life when you think positively.

10. Successful people treat failure as an opportunity for growth

Failure doesn’t mean you should give up; it means you’ve learned what not to do. Successful people know that failure is a necessary step to success. They don’t get discouraged when things get difficult but instead use the experience as an opportunity for growth and improvement. It’s important to remember that something won’t work out so you can figure out how to make it better next time.

The key to success is not being discouraged by failure. Successful people know that they learn from every challenge and obstacle in life, no matter how hard or uncomfortable it may seem. The more complex and painful it gets, the more success is in your future!

Success is not something that will come to you; it’s something you chase. It takes dedication and determination every day to be successful. Successful people know that every day is another opportunity to learn and grow into a better version of themselves than they were the day before. If you take these ten lessons from successful people, I guarantee that one day your life will be filled with happiness, joy, and everything else good in life!

Growing through failure

Most people are terrified of failure. They do everything possible to avoid it. But if you want to achieve anything significant in life, you have to be willing to fail. Failure is a necessary step on the road to success.

In order to grow and learn, you need to make mistakes. And to make mistakes, you need to take risks. That’s why failure is essential to personal growth. Every time you try something new, and it doesn’t work out, you learn something valuable that can help you be more successful next time around.

It is said that growth comes from being uncomfortable. Why? As we get settled into our careers, we become complacent. We have what C.S. Lewis calls the curse of knowledge. We take for granted the journey that got us to where we are. We forget how learning is associated with not knowing all of the answers.

Growth is a function of a lack of knowledge mixed with a desire to improve your current position. Your current position seeks to make you comfortable, complacent, and settled. You want to be a little uncomfortable to improve your current situation. The only way to grow is not to know all the answers and move forward anyway.

But this requires a certain amount of failure. We have to take risks and learn through experience what doesn’t work to reframe our strategy for the future. This is not an easy process, but it is necessary if you will achieve anything genuinely unique with your life. Have you ever thought about how Thomas Edison invented the first light bulb? He invented hundreds of them failed hundreds of times until he got it right.

Failure Defined

You must understand just what failure means before taking on this philosophy of experimentation. Failure does not mean giving up on an idea or goal because it’s too hard or you don’t like it. It means giving up your old way of thinking and acquiring new knowledge through experience that will allow you to move forward more effectively.

Failure means trying out something new without knowing if it will work, sharing an idea with someone even though they may criticize it, or giving yourself permission to mess up and not stress about it.

When you want to achieve something in life, you will do whatever it takes, regardless of the consequences. It would help if you stopped caring what other people think and start thinking for yourself. You can’t let the fear of criticism hold you back from reaching your full potential.

Stop Worrying Yourself

IF we are going to be uncomfortable, we have to accept not having all knowledge. This humility is what leads us to actual growth. Set the ego aside and not worry if others will judge you for not having a solution for each problem you are presented with.

When you are not afraid of failure, failing is just a part of the process of reaching your goal. We have to stop worrying about what people think of us. We have to be willing to stand alone if that’s what it takes for us to keep moving forward.

If you are entirely focused on your goal and are willing to fail, you can accomplish anything. The first key is being comfortable with being uncomfortable.

A young man was walking on a beach one day when he came across a sign that said, “You cannot step in the same river twice.” This puzzled him, so he asked a wise older man what it meant. The old man replied, “It means that you can never go back to the same experience twice.”

This is very relevant to the philosophy of failure. Failure doesn’t mean giving up on an idea or goal; it means learning from your mistakes and moving forward. You can never go back to the same experience twice, so you have to keep trying new things to grow and learn.

When you are comfortable in your present situation, be it work, school, life, et cetera, you are complacent. You may be going through the motions of life. Perhaps you feel dissatisfied, stuck, and have felt a lack of meaning. To break through these feelings, push yourself. Try new things. Seek out discomfort and challenge it.

This can be a scary thing to do, but if you fail, so what? You have to stop worrying about what people think of you and worry about the facts instead. It’s only one moment in time.

The facts are that your current situation is not good enough for you, so get out there and find something better. If you keep doing the same old things day in and day out, nothing will change for the better.

In other words, never settle for anything less than everything that life has to offer; after all, if we don’t take risks, then how would we ever know where our limits lie?

When you are focused and driven, nothing can stop you from achieving your goals. Failure is just a part of the process, so don’t let it discourage you. Keep trying new things and learning from your mistakes until you reach your destination. Don’t be afraid to stand alone if that’s what it takes; after all, nobody ever accomplished anything significant by following the herd. Be comfortable with being uncomfortable and never settle for anything less than everything life has to offer.