Nov 2013: night shelter
My life is a joke, and this needs to change. Too much debt, not enough success. I’ve achieved some things, but these things seem insignificant compared to my current situation: out of hospital after a breakdown for the 5th time, I’m 27 living in a homeless night shelter with a part time job at minimum wage.
I need to learn new skills, pay off debts, exercise, stay fit, and quit smoking. Or at least cut down. My current financial situation lends itself to quitting [smoking] entirely.
Nov 2013: Not purchasing cigarettes
Today I woke up in time for breakfast, but only just.
Resisted the urge to buy more cigarettes, but smoked a few anyway – from mates, and cigarette butts off the floor re-rolled with my Rizlas. It’s the end of the day now though, and I have no cigarettes. Success.
Slept in the library at a desk for a while, on and off, for about 40 minutes. Unsure what the staff would make of me sleeping there, but managed to relax enough to sleep with my head on my arm on the desk there.
Went to the top of town for a while where my phone radio works, signal is better there. Looked around some car parks for a place to breakdance, but radio signal cuts out and there are cameras there.
Spent the evening with peeps at the pub.
Nov 2013: Bought cigarettes
Bumped into —– who I haven’t seen for ages today. We hung out for a while, had some coffee and he bought us some bacon and sausage sandwiches. It was good to catch up with him. He’s had some more positive experience with taking meds, which have helped him out.
I got a call back from a job agency after applying for some office jobs online. The recruiter said she’d get back to me next week. A mate at the pub suggested I don’t put down my hostel/shelter address on employment forms, as they’ll discriminate against me. Not sure to what extent I agree with him.
—— sent me a copy of The Human Zoo, a book about how modern society leads to isolation, depression and violence. A couple of mates recommended I don’t read it for now. —— said it would be better to read Marvel (comics), to get my head out of negative head spaces. I think —- may have a point.
Nov 2013: I will never be in this situation again
I will never be in this situation again. Each morning I wake up in this cold night shelter, I’ll remember I will never be in this situation again.
I will never be in this situation again.
I went to ——‘s house, and after a curry he explained to me some essentials of harmonic technical analysis. It went over my head most of the time, but reminded me of Will Smith talking about developing skill, which takes “hours and hours if beating on your craft”. And “sickening work ethic”.
On my lunch break tomorrow I’ll get a book from the library to read on Sunday, and in the evenings: a book on stocks and shares, on investing.
And I will never be in this broke homeless situation again. I’ll remember this when I wake up in this chilly night shelter.
Nov 2013: Benefits Trap
Next week I’m signing up to an IT course, in Excel, Word and Powerpoint. It’s crucial I get work in January, when the temp job work ends.
With any luck (and some careful saving) I’ll have enough to pay half my debt to the hostel by the start of next month. It’s not ideal, living in a hostel, but it’s a step up from the night shelter. Can’t believe full rent there is £200 a week. These systems seem designed to live in, on benefits. Working seems to be penalised quite heavily. That’s why I’m currently working just 2 days a week – to stay on the benefits I need to stay on, in order to claim housing benefit. Cost of shelter on housing benefits: £7 a week. Cost of shelter not on housing benefits: £120 a week.
My handwriting is quite appalling. I’d best work on that. There isn’t much need to write nowadays, with machines everywhere.
Perhaps I’ll take up writing letters.
It can be so hard to stay positive. Life’s been a struggle with more intensity over the last few years – living in hostels, being homeless and crashing on sofas for a few months, increasing debt and low paid jobs I have been able to go to Asia twice, once because my dad bought me a ticket… Though each visit ended in a breakdown, and a return to hospital in England, damaged relations with my dad and sister, and returning to a shitty housing situation, once again struggling for money. I’m fed up with it.
Apparently hard work may be the way to the top – but hard work at what? …I left university because I didn’t like the corruption of foreign policy and law makers [and the borderline paranoia that may have been, at least in part, spurred on by things like this] – now it seems I’m paying the price, with minimum wage jobs at 27 years old and living in homeless shelters.
Enough is enough. I’m gradually building a core of confidence, to replace the anxiety and worry that filled me.
Will Smith talks about the power that making a choice has – he says just DECIDING something has physical presence and power.
I’m deciding what I want. I don’t want to wake up again pining for ——-, and regretting my life’s choices. I’m deciding to wake up looking forward to having time to myself to study. Looking forward to applying for more office jobs… Looking forward to getting phone credit and giving —— a call, to ask how things are going, over in Asia.
I want the freedom to travel later in life – but not too late. I’m not sure about struggling through university, getting into more debt, with no job guarantee at the end of it, when i could be learning tech skills to freelance with. So i can eventually choose my own hours, and travel where i want to – in England, Britain, the UK – the world. I demand that freedom. And I’m deciding that’s what I want.
My throats a bit sore, and I’m sneezing a lot. I need to cut down on cigarettes to give my body time to heal. Getting fed up with the constant taste if tobacco.
Circa 2018 / 2019
It’s a lot of 1%s.
You don’t go from 0 to 100% in anything. The little steps – the 1%s – are what life’s about.
(The small daily doses of self-improvement.)
Take small maintainable steps, little changes you can maintain.
ON QUITTING SMOKING
Smoking is a bad relationship.
It’s literally toxic.
Forgive yourself for indulging in it, but know you will give it up.
“Failing” after trying to quit smoking is not really failure. Even cutting down for a day is a step in the right direction.
INNER CONFLICT IS A KIND OF TENSION IT’S BEST TO GET COMFORTABLE WITH.
Having a balanced mind-set is like constantly maintaining a moving work of art. It can be easier to oscillate between two extremes before finding that balance.
Hierarchy – Equality
Happy – Sad
Confident – Insecure
The frequent transition between mind-sets can become your path to inner peace and balance.
SORT IT OUT
YOU WANT CLOUT
IS THAT WHAT IT’S REALLY ABOUT?
WANT MORE TIME, MORE MONEY, AND FAME?
WELL HOW MUCH IS ENOUGH, WHAT AMOUNT?
WISDOM OF THE FOOL, PARAMOUNT.
When you avoid obstacles, they’re everywhere. When you embrace obstacles, there aren’t enough of them. It’s never right. And that’s all right.
It’s all work. Get used to it.
So you didn’t achieve that goal today. But did you get closer to it?
“It doesn’t matter if you’re losing, as long as you’re trending in the right direction.” – Tim Ferris’s
STICK TO THE PLAN
YOU CAN CHANGE THE PLAN
BUT STICK TO THE PLAN
Felt really calm at work doing late evening stock count.
It may have been because I had my psychology appointment today, and it was nice to talk some things through, focusing on his I can improve my outlook and life.
Also socialised a bit before my meeting, as I bumped into —– and —— and ——‘s mate before going to psychology session.
Work was really calm – the January calm after Christmas – and it made me realise how much I appreciate calm.
Got to end the shift a bit early, as my manager understands I need my sleep for my mental health. So I finished at 10:30pm rather than 11:30pm. With any luck I’ll get a good night’s sleep.
Nov 2013: night shelter