It’s all Well Wiggy

Big congrats tonight to our friends L&P for securing their first buy-to-let property – inspiring stuff!

Apologies to Rick, Nic & Lianne for taking over the SEAS Open Day – I think the public-speaking bug has well and truly got me, I’m lovin’ it! (sorry, again, Ronald).

For tomorrow’s Japanese speaking class I have to come up with some self-PR for an imaginary job interview (self PR? ooh, now that will be tricky…!!). Conveniently enough, one of the model interviews we will be using is that for the position of CIR on the JET scheme! (Speaking of which, got confirmation today that they’d received my application).

Everything is well wiggy these days.

Oh, and I wrote a HUGE mumble entry tonight on self-help books, a response to a couple of comments demonstrating a similar attitude to that that I used to have.

That mumble comes in the form of the big comment at the end of this morning’s Mumble, What If?

Right, 10pm, bedtime for josey.


Woop Woop it’s another great day in Life

Yo Yo Wiggy!

Great start to the day – news that a close friend has had their business idea shortlisted for a £100,000 prize!

Now we’re just waiting on our phone call to tell us that our business idea went through too!

This afternoon is the first of our department’s three annual open days. I love these, and always take part to tell the prospective Japanese Studies students what it’s really like to study here.. (and for the free chocolate biscuits).

I remember coming on one myself and meeting Rick Siddle (who now teaches me newspaper translation, and is supervising my dissertation) – boy was I excited! I still remember the train passing through Chesterfield (just south of Sheffield), hearing that the next stop was Sheffield and almost wetting myself with excitement. Seeing the Arts Tower with its Paternosters for the first time.

Funny to think that at that point I hadn’t met any of the lovely SEAS (School of East Asian Studies) staff, people who have now played a very important part in helping me develop my sense of self.

Everyone thinking of going to uni: come to Sheffield. Student’s Union has just won “Best Union in the UK” award too, for the 2nd time in the last few years.

Raa raaaaa raaaa woof woof!

What If?

Listening tonight to one of the audiobooks that has helped me most, There is a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem by W. Dyer, I’m reminded of something I tell myself all the time, yet do not fully embrace – there is no ultimate goal to be reached, there is only now.

I’m also reminded of that Flash animation I shared with you a few week’s back by Alan Watts – Life is not about the final note – the whole thing from the very start is a path to be danced along!

No matter how much I feel these ideas to be true, I still can’t break away from feeling that there is ‘more’ around the corner.

Take now for example: if I think of the things I’ve achieved in the past couple of years, I am immensely satisfied, I wouldn’t change a thing. I would say that I am successful, a successful student, a successful friend, a successful thinker, a successful photographer, a successful writer, a successful happy person – but hang on! I’m only an undergraduate university student – how can I be “successful” when I have achieved “nothing”. I’m bankrupt, virtually unemployed, I have no qualifications apart from a 1994 Basic Food Hygiene Certificate, I have no quantifiable skills as such – OK, so I can speak Japanese. So what? so can over 150 million other people.

So, I still have this unconscious idea, lurking there at the back of my head, that when I get that job, when I have my own business, when I’m a dad, when I have that home in the countryside with a big organic garden, then I’ll be successful!

But what twaddle is that! There is NEVER going to be any greater success that there is today! Today, I am happy. I achieved a lot, I had a positive impact upon a good number of situations, I lived in harmony with my inner self – I can rest my head and feel content that today was a model day.

So if that’s the case – how can things ever be any better than this? OK, so the circumstances may be different – I may be Prime Minister of Japan introducing a new government program that involves stripping the hillsides of concrete cladding and replacing it all with trees, I may have a helicopter (air powered so as to be non-polluting of course), I may have published a whole series of books on achieving your dreams – but would that make me any more ‘successful’ than I was today?

It may be a difference of scale, but ultimately, is there really any difference?

I’m inclined to think that no, there isn’t. I never will reach that magic point in life when I am ‘successful’ – because I’m there every day, we all are.

Which is a bit disappointing really. If I’m never going to be any more ‘successful’ than today, why bother try harder?

I think, however, there is an area of life where there is room for constant improvement – spirit. There is a realm that knows no boundaries, that is always open to us should we wish to explore. Perhaps here, there can be a brightER future, a better tomorrow. Perhaps the large vegetable garden, the helicopter, the baby – perhaps they are physical manifestations of a soul that is successful. Having said that, putting ‘soul’ and successful in the same sentence doesn’t sound right.

Hmm. I think for now, I’ll continue as I have been. Believing in and striving for a better future, whilst simultaneously celebrating today, everyday, as if there were no tomorrow. Perhaps that will mean that my whole life is based upon a figment of my imagination, but if it helps me to continue to develop, then perhaps that’s not such a bad thing.

Productivity and happiness

Wow, another productive day. I’m finding proper planning so useful – by putting absolutely everything in my calendar and then printing it out a-week-to-a-page, I feel in control even when I have a hectic schedule.I can see it all laid out before me.

Today’s was particularly busy.

Starting at 6am: 2 hours of part-time work, an hour of podcast / commercial creation (to avoid having to pay for bandwidth! – thanks Positive Internet!) 5 hours of meetings, 2 hours of lectures, half an hour of exercise, half-an-hour of food shopping, 4 hours of work / society related emails & website work, an hour of working on my speech-contest entry …and lots of jogging in-between!

I don’t think I could keep this kind of routine up for a long time, but for now it’s really making me buzz. I don’t feel all that tired, I don’t feel stressed. I’m eating healthily (that’s the great thing about [some] meetings, you get free food which includes lots of fruit that gets neglected!)

Really looking forward to the holidays though 🙂

Oh, watched a fascinating video on Happiness yesterday (thanks jason), another one of the great TED series.

I think this goes some why towards explaining why I feel so happy, and have done for so long. Makes me feel justified! Not that I have to justify myself!

It’s about 20 minutes long, well worth watching.

Interview Manners in Japan

NO NO no nono nononono

If it was a piss-take it would be funny.

…But as it’s real it’s positively scary. Someone, save that country!

A guide to Interview Manners for graduate jobseekers in Japan.

(If unable to see video watch it here)