My current favorite writer is Yevgenia Belorusets, a photographer who publishes daily diary entries from Kyiv. It’s surprising to read in her writing that even during what feels like the end of the world, people still take walks when the weather is good and they still sing and give out flowers and keep their cafe doors open. It seems in a war zone we need coffee and hot bread and flowers and a good song even more than usual. But that’s in Kyiv, where things are not the worst. In other cities and villages in Ukraine, the sky has turned dark. So have the buildings. So have the streets, their pavements smeared with dark dried blood. It’s gonna take a long time before the light comes back.
These days I’ve been trying to change, but I’m also trying to be as gentle about it as possible.
Self-improvement can be insidious and a source of stress, because for many people, self-improvement is actually self-dislike in disguise. If we’re not careful, we can spend years on the self-improvement treadmill trying to reach our goals but feel utterly, utterly empty at the end.
There is simply no imaginary day in the bright future ahead when we’d wake up in the morning transformed, an ideal version of ourselves.
There is only transforming in the here and the now.
Which also means we have to do the work NOW and not tomorrow, but for us to truly transform, we have to do it with an attitude of non-striving, of not wanting to control the outcome exactly.
This is what I mean by trying to change, but also trying to be as gentle about it as possible.
Flying to France and Italy for 1.5 months in a couple of weeks. We are planning to visit Paris, Lyon, Florence, Siracusa and a few places in between. Hopefully there will also be a lot of time for reading and for shooting some new images. I look forward to hunting this guy down in particular:
Reading/studying Jon Kabat-Zinn’s “Full Catastrophe Living” carefully and earnestly and genuinely interested in signing up for a Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction program just to see how it’s all done.
Till the next update!