Category Archives: Life Balance

Loafing toward salvation

The unbounded life is perfectly content is its pointlessness. It’s not a formula for any kind of traditional measure of success, nor intended to achieve any specific purpose. It’s defined by a spirit of infinite and cheerful uselessness that is found in all forms of play, and born from a desire to avoid the evils of work. When we embrace our laziness, we feel less guilty about the pursuit of leisure. We allow ourselves the time to dream and create versus being consumed by daily practical concerns. The leisurely life is an artful life, one that expresses the curiosity, humor and waywardness of our essential humanity. Continue reading

The five faces of Shiva

What do you do in your free time? We ask this harmless question to better know a person by their interests or when we want to steer the conversation away from work. I pose it when I sense that people aren’t inspired in their career, because of the way they say things like, “It’s just a job”, with the same tone of resignation one might use in the phrase, “But I can control it with medication”. Free time is a strange concept, because it implies that the rest of our time is not free; we pay for it with our labor. It is only the small remainder of spare time that we can call our own; the leftovers from the banquet of life Continue reading

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Every day is like Sunday

My wife and I have this game we play called, “What day is today?” Throughout the week, we periodically ask each other and then challenge the other’s response. So Nam will ask me and I’ll say, “Tuesday?” to which she will reply, “I thought it was Wednesday” and then I’ll second-guess myself and offer, “I’m pretty sure it’s Tuesday…or Monday. Definitely not Wednesday.” Turns out it’s Thursday. I used to be this calendar-driven guy, complete with to-do lists and pop-up reminders on my Palm, but not anymore. I stopped wearing a watch, except when out on my bike, so I know my turnaround time. And yet, without noticing the passage of time, I am getting important things done; certainly more than I ever was working in an office. Continue reading

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Once in a lifetime

This past week I was back in my old haunts around China and having been away for only a few months, I was still amazed at what had changed. It’s harder and harder to find a quiet back street where one can enjoy a few beers at a family restaurant. Every time I go back, I realize that I can never really go back. As Heraclitus said, “You can’t step into the same river twice, for fresh waters are forever flowing in upon you.’ Not only is the river never the same river, but I am never the same man. Continue reading

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Suffering in comfort

UnboundedLife is my exploration of personal freedom, and a key aspect of this is wellness. I like to think about it as freedom to consciously choose and be accountable for the quality of our life. There is so much confusion about wellness in modern society, because it has become a huge industry, and there are so many corporations, trade groups and special interests, bombarding us with false choices, all trying to sell us wellness. Continue reading

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Life the Movie

You’re not who you think you are. This, according to movies like The Matrix, Fight Club, the Bourne Identity, The Truman Show, Lost Highway and many others. Not only are you somebody else, but you are actually living “in a world where nothing is as it seems”, to quote one of the most popular movie trailer lines. This theme of alienation reflects our modern disconnectedness with ourselves, each other and especially with the natural world. The stories are popular because they provide an entertaining look at our own delusions, where we confuse our own identities with a diploma, a brand name, a job title or a neighborhood. Continue reading

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At the Heart of Being Busy

There’s a movement I came across called heart-based living. I found it on a website called Heartmath. The Heartmath organization says it’s “dedicated to enhance people’s well being by helping them live a heart-directed life.” Though I don’t exactly understand it, I thought this was an interesting way to talk about wellness and reducing stress. There’s no mention of the usual expert recommendations of better managing time, getting organized, thinking positively or practicing mental relaxation techniques. Continue reading

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