MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the month “August, 2020”

A getaway island

He had researched for months before he started planning everything.  In a deeply inter-connected world where anything and anyone can be traced in light-speed, it was literally very difficult to get lost. Especially when half of the world’s police organisations had you on their most-wanted list.

Henry lived a more or less normal life. As normal as one’s life can be, that is. He found it to be as boring as his name.

But then, on that last summer day, something inside of him snapped. He decided to do something completely out of character. Something precisely no one expected him to do.

He quit his job of 15 years without due notice, told his girlfriend he felt too constrained to commit to her, gave out most of his belongings to charity organisations, and then robbed a bank.

He had seen it done so many times in films, TV series, even on the news. It wasn’t that complicated after all.

The getting away part was the tricky aspect.

He had researched for an island to get lost to, for months before he had snapped. It came in handy now. But little did he know then, that even searching for an escape was the pretext and sign of something going wrong.

He had a storm building inside his head and once it expressed itself, it became a hurricane and a tsunami all in one.

Longing to return

©MCD_Velika

On the first day back from a holiday you’re usually overwhelmed with an unbearable denial of having returned. It’s as if you refuse to accept that the break is over and you have to return to routine, because you need to work to earn the money to be able to then have a break.

The extent to which you’ve relaxed and had tremendous fun during your holiday is often linearly proportional to the time it will take you to come to terms with the fact that the break is now over. It’s a harsh awakening, consenting to now having returned to what you’ve tried for months to escape from.

But in truth, why are you doing something you so badly need a break from anyway? Sure, we all need a change from everything once in a while, but shouldn’t you be spending most of your days doing something you like, that fulfils you and which you’re good at? Shouldn’t you be longing to return to this too after your break? If you feel you’re incarcerated and forced into functioning in a job you don’t want to get up and go to, then you should rethink your priorities.

The point in life is to have a job that is more than that. One that you’re passionate about, and even if it is not exactly what you want to be doing, it motivates you to be the best you can be at it. One that inspires you to raise the bar higher, because you can.

Holidays are great. And we all need the time to switch off, calm down, change scenes and rethink many aspects of our lives. But let’s be rational: there are people who can’t afford to take a break, mainly because they have nothing to go away from or don’t even have the financial capacity to do so.

So be grateful: for the work you have, the ability to earn a living, to travel, to escape routine, to have friends to experience things with, but most of all, to have a home to return to after it all.

The guesthouse on the ocean

©MCD_Monembasia

From the minute they stepped into that guesthouse their stress and worries had flown away. In some magical way, reality had become part of a distant past, of some parallel universe that right now seemed far far away.

It was exactly what they needed after a hectic, stifling few months. To escape the world. And this seemed the perfect place to do it.

He was already up when she opened her eyes and breathed in that salty smell of the ocean surrounding them.

He was sitting outside half-naked gazing over the horizon. Dreaming. Setting goals. He seemed more relaxed than ever. She walked out in a short satin robe. The smile that covered his face as he turned and saw her was enough to keep her warm despite the chilly morning breeze.

He pulled her onto his lap and they sat there, saying nothing, daydreaming across the waves.

It was ideal.

So much, no words were needed to compliment the occasion. Perhaps there were no words suitable enough either.

We all need a place to get lost. But what makes it even greater is having the right person to share it all with. Even in silence and the simple gestures that say it all.

Until next time…

Let’s stay here”. She looked at him and he could see the longing reflected in her sparkling eyes. She was genuinely asking. All it took for him was to nod positively and she would fly off the hammock she had spent most of the day on and leap joyfully on the sand and into his arms.

This was the best vacation they had in a very long time.

They both felt carefree, relaxed, calm, and truly happy.

You know it’s not possible no matter how much I want to too…

Her eyes dropped, dimming the shine that was emanating from her entire body all this time.

But I promise you we’ll come back soon. Even if only for a weekend”.

The smile returned, but with less glow this time.

Perhaps one of the reasons this holiday was so perfect is because it lasted just the right amount of time”.

She nodded in agreement, as she marvelled at her sun-kissed hair and deeply tanned skin. She gazed past the turquoise blue sea into the horizon as the sun set, adding another memory into her mind.

Summer memories are stored in a drawer of your mind to look back on those dim winter days when you’re lying lazily on the couch.

He was most probably right, she thought. They had found the ideal place to go and relax, to see friends, have fun, and for – if only for a little while – stop worrying about everything and let life happen.

She recalled a Spanish proverb that says “how beautiful it is to do nothing, and then to rest afterward”. How true. This summer she fully embraced its meaning. In fact, it is valid that “sometimes the most productive thing you can do is relax” (Mark Black).

She laid back down on her hammock and watched the sun dive into the sea as the sky turned red.

She breathed in the smell of sea iodine and promised to treasure the moment. Until next time…

“You don’t always need a plan.  Sometimes you just need to breathe, trust, let go and see what happens.” – Mandy Hale

The place to write

©MCD_Kardamyli

It was the perfect place for inspiration. There were no artificial sounds to pollute the natural rhythm of life. Everything seemed so much calmer in the countryside. So much more fulfilling.

It was a place where those seeking the true meaning of life would head to, searching for a state of mindfulness and relaxation; to re-connect with their inner core.

But the villagers knew very well how to survive without thinking about it too much. They had found their tempo long before self-help books and seminars sprang like tech manuals.

Life was simpler here. Less complicated. Much less stressful. And for this life lasted longer too.

Food produced locally tasted differently.

People emitted a brighter aura. They were more friendly, more talkative, more polite.

Sounds were heart-warming and peaceful.

The landscape itself was calming and tranquilising.

It was a natural sedative that was also cost-free.

It was the perfect place for inspiration.

The stone-built house had been renovated to attract the tourists looking for traditional luxury associated with history. But for him – a writer – they hid in their walls stories waiting for someone to bring to light.

He took out his notebook and his favourite pen and as soon as he drank a first sip of freshly-brewed perfumed coffee, he began to write.

He had already ran the story in his head, as if having watched a film and now was imprinting it all on paper. This was the easy part.

His next bestseller would be ready in a matter of weeks.

A well-kept secret

Perhaps the key to something lasting is that not many people know about it.

Like when you set goals. It’s better to work hard in silence to achieve them, rather than boast about what you’re doing or aiming for.

Right?

She looked at him. He had a point. Not everyone is happy with your success or joy. And bad vibes may cause a negative aura around you that sabotages whatever you wish to do, no matter how much you want it. It is up to us to maintain a positive energy. If it’s true that you attract what you send out, then we should only strive to be cheerful and optimistic as much as possible.

Sometimes that also means keeping things to yourself.

At least until you’re certain of their outcome.

So you’re saying that we should keep this a secret?” she asked feigning innocence. She already knew the answer. And he knew she was not that naïve.

Wouldn’t you think so?” he asked coyly.

They drove round the bend to a beautiful stone-built house by the lake. There was no other house around for quite some distance. It was like a sanctuary for the both of them. Where they could be who they wanted for however long, away from prying eyes and malicious gossip.

After all,” he added, winking, “things that happen in secret have a hidden charm”.

Taking time off

One of the most pleasing sentiments in the world is setting out for an adventure. You don’t care how early or late you travel in this case, because you are certain that your destination will recompense the trouble of getting there.

Embarking on an adventure usually entails taking time off your usual routine. It means shutting out everything that, no matter how much you enjoy doing, has made you weary and exhausted due to its prolonged and repeated nature.

We all need time off. A break. To detox, regroup and rejuvenate. A welcome recess; that time of doing nothing, will help you bring things into perspective. It is only when you change your view on things that you manage to see a clearer picture.

And you realise that you can draw inspiration and motivation from the simplest things in life. Those that in the hustle and bustle of daily chaos you tend to forget exist.

You’ll go where you focus your light on. You just need to remember that you are responsible for shining it. And it order to maintain its brightness, you need to recharge it when it gets dim.

There is a good quote, which says that you won’t let the fuel in your car drop to empty, why do you allow it to happen to you? Letting your energy drain.

August is that perfect period to shut down for a while. To allow your mind and soul to breathe. To regain your strength, rediscover your focus and set new goals. It is the time to dream and make plans on how to achieve them.

Take time off. You’ll be thankful you did when you return relaxed, refreshed, recharged.

The trouble with overestimation

It was a thunderous and stormy day in August when Sarah decided to de-clutter her closets. In the heart of summer, autumn made its brief appearance that day, reminding her that nothing lasts too long.

It was time to get rid of everything that belonged in the past and had no room in her present or future. It was the only way to look forward.

After all, “life can only be understood looking backwards; but it must be lived forwards” (Soren Kierkegaard).

The truth with disappointment is that you invoke it on yourself by setting too high expectations.

You raise the bar too high hoping and wishing that others will leap up and reach it. You expect too much because you overestimate the potential of others. In your eyes, you see them as the ideal you imagine them to be. You fall in love with the idea of who a person can be, not who they truly are. And therein lies the very problem. Because you fail to see the reality and look pass it to its potential, of what it could be, not what it actually is. And then the difficulties intensify as you refuse to accept things as they are and to come to terms with how others are and act.

We fail to see that not everyone shares our mentality and our behaviour. These are beyond our control when they concern others. We don’t always need to comprehend why, but others may react and act differently than how we would. And that’s OK. Because they are an entirely different human being. But we struggle in accepting that.

And that is our trouble.

We lift others too high in our minds that we are the ones left hurt when they fall. In their head, they were never that high up anyway.

Sarah discovered a small frame she had hidden in one of her boxes. It read “expect nothing, appreciate everything”. And that pretty much summed it all up.

Eight Whispers learnt

Picture the number eight (8). Now imagine it fell sideways (∞). That symbol is of infinity. It is one of no start or end.

Eight is a symbol of infinity. Of a constant flow of energy, life, love and power. It is also often related to material wealth, money and success.

In a world filled with complications and diversions, the infinity symbol represents both simplicity and balance, as it reminds us to be conscious of where we are and aware of the endless possibilities that we have before us.

Eight is a powerful and dynamic number in itself. It is exactly one third of the 24-hour day. It is the number of hours we work, play and sleep. But it is also the time when, having been out all day, you realise just how quickly time has passed because you were genuinely having fun.

Eight is the number of years that have passed since I started this blog.

Every blog anniversary I take the time to ponder on how far I’ve come as a writer and a person, how I’ve matured on all levels, and how things in life have changed not only for me personally, but also generally in the world.

This year has been tough so far. And we’re still in the eighth month of it, having another third to go.

Yet, if we consider everything we’ve learnt so far, we should be grateful.

So here are eight whispers that I share with you:

  1. Everything – literally every single thing – can turn upside down in a millisecond. That is why you need to live and enjoy every moment you have. You don’t know how much more time we’ll be given. Why wait? The time is now. Do the best you can with it.
  2. Smile more and laugh harder. The more you emanate a positive aura, the more happiness you’ll spread and the more positive your whole day will be. We attract what we send out. Remember that.
  3. You don’t own all the problems in the world. There is always someone facing something more serious and more difficult than you do. Just work at having more skills to be able to manage and solve your own problems better.
  4. Choose your friends and co-workers wisely. You’ll spend with them more than just eight hours or eight days or eight years. Be with people you admire and who push you to be better. Share a mutual path to success and improvement.
  5. If you don’t take the risk you’ll never know. “A ship is always safe at the shore but that’s not what it’s built for” (Albert Einstein).
  6. Focus on what you want and where you want to be. So focus on the good, on the positive, on the light in all the darkness. Place your energy in lighting up the way to where you want to go. That is what guides you. You.
  7. Devote time to your education. A smart person never stops learning. Read. The more you read the more your mind and heart will open and the more you’ll see the world differently. The more you’ll appreciate it. And the more grateful you’ll be for all you have.
  8. Being successful also entails being happy. Otherwise, there is not much point to it. Do what makes your heart sing. What gets you up in the morning without snoozing the alarm clock eight times. Make your job your passion and work hard to achieve your goals so that you radiate with satisfaction and happiness when you realise your dream.

Life shouldn’t be as miserable and harsh as we make it out to be. Every hardship we are forced to go through has a solution or at least an aspect we can deal with and learn from. We just need to want to see the positive in all the bad.

We should want to smile more and change our lives.

Eight is also said to represent order and balance and a constant desire to master all important things in life. But sometimes we just need to go with the flow and adapt to reach infinity.

We are a strange people

There are three types of people in this world: Those who when told to do something by experts or authorities choose to follow the rules; those who only follow some of them in a customized way that suits them best; and those who obstinately refuse to do so.

We are a strange people.

We have demonstrated that worse than a virus that is plaguing humanity is stupidity that, unfortunately, cannot be remedied with a vaccine.

We have heard and seen so much in the past couple of months since the coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak, that we begin to wonder how mankind has actually survived 2020 years amidst this astoundingly low IQ that is on display everywhere lately. Perhaps it is simply a matter that we now have the means (social media) to make our stupidity more evident and apparent and for all to see. What is even more tragic is that the dumber you seem, the more proud of it you seem to appear.

From the most obvious things that belong in the realm of common sense – from washing your hands, maintaining basic hygiene, and not cramming everywhere – to simple instructions, such as how to (properly) wear a face mask to cover nose and mouth, people are reacting everywhere as if they have been told to become victims of the most horrible and unending punishment.

It is ridiculous how much time and energy we waste in rebelling against something that is supposed to protect us from each other and us collectively from something that is evidently (despite the abundant conspiracies) affecting us in a very negative way, both in health and in economy.

We have proven that we need legislation to regulate even the most common sense issues. But we stubbornly refuse to abide to the laws, because we simply have to object to something, to show that we do not yield to a system that is trying to violate our rights and freedoms, and because we simply do not want to.

Yet, we are aware of every provision of the law and are willing to exercise our legal rights when our neighbour’s dog wakes us up from our afternoon nap, or for any other pedantic reason we find to draw money from the state, or waste time and energy to prove that we are superior to those we ourselves elected to manage a democracy.

We rebel against technocrats and scientists, arguing that they bought their way into their positions. But not everyone is like that. Corruption and nepotism is definitely widespread. But there are people who have worked hard and made sacrifices to be where they are. And they are trying to help.

It is easier to criticise everything and everyone when you are sitting on your couch and have not spent years or grey matter studying. And it is much easier to feel contempt that others justifiably have more knowledge than you and can recommend what to do to keep you safe. It is easier to scorn than to admire. And consequently it is this competitive nature that makes us fight against the tide rather than go along with it.

We believe we are more clever, cunning and astute than the next person. We have ideas – an abundance of innovative trends – that we do not use for something good or useful, but for the most ludicrous reasons, and for our own benefit and interests alone.

We are a strange people.

And the more we try to change others, the more we realise that it is those who couldn’t care less about the world that will end up surviving the longest.

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