Remaining Present Through Keeping a Journal

Photo by Jan Kahánek on Unsplash

Not Getting Any Younger

I recently embarked on my 30th lap around the sun (I turned 29). Until this most recent birthday, when folks would ask the proverbial birthday question of “Welp, do ya feel any older?”, I would simply answer “Nope.” This time, I had to catch myself. This time, fortunately, I did feel older. I say fortunately because this revelation set me on a path to be more of a Carpe Diem type of motherfucker. You know? Seize the day. Live like you were dying. All that cliche BS that we consistently fail to acknowledge the profundity of.

I’m very grateful to say that I’ve been lucky enough to live through some pretty epic experiences during my short time on this rock. Been to multiple countries, spent 8 months on the road visiting 49 out of 50 states, recorded music with GRAMMY Award winning artists, played concerts for thousands of people throughout the states and even other countries, bought property and lived off the grid in northern California, drove snowcats at Breckenridge ski resort for a winter, spent a year in Alaska, partied like a rockstar for three straight years in Miami. A pretty eclectic collection of life events if I do say so myself. That being said, I don’t think I’ve always given my best effort to grasp the moment.

Furthermore, I’ve always adhered to the notion that I probably wouldn’t live that long. That if I lived my life faster, I would see and do more. Well, frankly, thats a ridiculously shitty attitude to have. Instead of the “live fast” type I’m now attempting to become more of the “move with purpose” type. They both have similar results but the latter comes with a bit more longevity and awareness.

So needless to say, I’ve been focusing a lot on self improvement as of late. What I put in my body, how I treat others, what I choose to listen to, what I choose to buy, who I surround myself with, and primarily how present I choose to be. While there are many specific mechanisms I’ve been implementing in my life as the means of catalyzing that process, for now, I’d like to touch on journaling. For now, I’d like to start with being present.

Slow Down. Be PRESENT.

Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash

Everyday we are bombarded with millions of images, sounds, and thoughts. How much of that do we consciously internalize? How much do we end up remembering? How much do we appreciate? The answers to those questions could probably be more accurately measured when asking the opposites. We subconsciously compartmentalize most of our day, we tend to forget most of what happens to us, and so often we take the beautifully serendipitous nature of life for granted. In short, we’re just not all that present. I should speak only for myself but if we’re being honest here I’d say I’ve done a much better job at this than half of the zombies I see aimlessly wandering through life on autopilot. No offense.

So what sort of steps can we take to ensure that we aren’t letting our lives pass us by? If we could only somehow live our lives twice.

“People who keep journals have life twice.” Jessamyn West

I’ve found that keeping a journal has been extremely helpful in my quest to be more present. By simply jotting down the portions of my day that stood out to me its made seemingly trivial and forgettable events become a bit more meaningful and memorable. The interactions that I had with people, clever passages from things I read, concepts from podcasts that I listened to, or songs that made my day a bit groovier all started to stand out a bit more. These are the moments that shape our days and ultimately these days shape our lives. It takes me a mere 5 minutes before I go to bed to chronicle the day, but its amazing how much more purpose this simple act gives to the other 1,435. Fun fact: There are 1,440 precious minutes in a day. MAKE THEM COUNT!

Journal with a Clean Conscience

When I bought this journal and the pen that I’ve been writing in it with, I wanted to make sure that the source of those products was one that I felt good about supporting.

I bought the journal from a super cool company called Matr Boomie. They make fair trade, handmade, sustainable, tree-free products and a percentage of the sales goes to funding community developments. Even better, the journal came with a handwritten note from Meredith, whom I assume to be a founder of the company? You can find the journal pictured below along with other rad products here.

I bought the pen from a company called Beiluner. Its made from bamboo (which is actually considered a grass and not a tree) and has replaceable stainless steel ink cartridges to help mitigate the use of unnecessary plastic. You can find the pen pictured below here.

If any of you journal yourself, I would love to hear about the impact it has had on you. Shoot me a Tweet about it at https://twitter.com/Nick_Odio!

Looking forward,

Nick Odio

By the way, I’m on the lookout for paid gigs so if you’re picking up what I’m putting down or know someone that might, feel free to email me at youalreadyknodio@gmail.com. I love to learn and will dive deep into all things esoteric. Some of my areas of expertise include but are not limited to cryptocurrencies/digital assets/distributed ledgers, health & wellness, biohacking, global affairs, music, sports, business, science, and travel!

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Seeks Truth. Hacks Biology. Shreds Powder. Watches Markets. Reads Books.