What You Say You Are and the Food of Thought

What you’re thinking about, you’re becoming.

-Mohammed Ali

Your perception is your reality. We move through the world with a story about ourselves in our heads that we call our identity. We tell ourselves that we’re ‘rich’ or that we’re ‘poor’, and the words we choose to use to describe our reality become real in some way or another, regardless of our account balances. We add to this identity and subtract from it over time, usually in response to some crisis beyond our control life has thrown at us, and call that growth. People ‘find’ and ‘lose’ God, for example. It happens all the time.

We hold stories about others as well, both collectively and as individuals. The way we see the world and our place within it is our reality, regardless of how much of the world we have actually seen, experienced or studied.

Actual reality may or may not be objective and absolute, but our perception of it can change – wilfully or not – and therefore so can our reality, which matters greatly to our sense of contentment, satisfaction and happiness. 

This is a powerful tool, and should be wielded accordingly. This simple little truth can be demonstrated and understood in various ways, and has the power to transform you.  That includes your finances, your lifestyle and the impact you have.

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How to Change Your Mind: Right Thought

The brief literary essay As a Man Thinketh (USA/Can)by James Allen in 1902 – about a 30-minute read – opens with this encapsulating poem:


Mind is the Master power that molds
and makes;
And Man is Mind, and evermore he
takes
The tool of Thought, and, shaping
what he wills,
Brings forth a thousand joys, a
thousand ills:-
He thinks in secret, and it comes to
pass:
Environment is but his looking-glass.

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How to Change Your Mind: Spending

Do you ask what the proper limit is to wealth? It is first to have what is necessary, and second, to have what is enough.

Seneca, Letter II.
The owner of this truck bought it new in the 80’s and she’s still one of the coolest rigs on the beach in the Baja.

I spent a lot of time last year writing about spending. I tracked my spending religiously, and I still do. And I focused a lot on the numbers; the outcome over the process, if you will. So when I didn’t achieve my original goals, I adjusted the target. Three times. And then I still didn’t quite meet it.

And no matter how you slice it, when we focus on the goal over the process, it stings when we don’t reach our goals. It’s uninspiring and de-motivating, to say the least.

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Nauyaca Falls

A view of the Río Barú from a ridge on your way to Nauyaca Falls near Dominical, right on the border of Puntaarenas and San José Province, Costa Rica. The Río (river) likely gets its name, from the indigienous Guaymi language, where Barú translating roughly as ‘watershed´ or ‘river basin’.

I had been staying in the beach town of Dominical a few nights already, and compared to the world-class surf experience I had just had in southern Costa Rica, the conditions had not been great.

It was August, and the off-season for the droves of American and European tourists that flock to Costa Rica every winter. So Dominical was sleepy – very sleepy. This isn’t a big deal when the surf is good, but when it’s not, a surf bum can quickly start to wonder about what they’re going to do with their day. And what the hell are they doing with their life!

And that’s when you know it’s time to get a move on. Time to get on your feet and out of your head and find something else to do in the area. Besides – it’s Costa Rica! Apart from great surf and beaches the country is filled with natural treasures, wildlife and all sorts of activities for tourists to get up to.

Thanks to the internet and the well-developed tourism industry of Costa Rica, it wasn’t hard to quickly come up with a few ideas and narrow it down from there. I decided I would head to some waterfalls in the area, and from what I had read, Nauyaca was the go.*

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