Improving your conversation and why it’s important.


Humans are social beings. We rely on conversations, interactions and healthy levels of connection and communication for multiply purposes. Maintaining good mental health requires incredible levels of patience, resilience and training, three states that seem unreachable for many in their current mental state. This is just one reason why even the briefest and most irrelevant conversations and interactions are important on a scale which is hard to comprehend. The smallest of interactions positive or negative can resonate exponentially between individuals. Your light can shine a thousand miles or your darkness can spread like a virus. How you compose yourself throughout every one of your actions will tip the scale towards the side of good or the side of evil. With all the human injustice that continues to exist; you should consider it your duty to champion the side of not being a cunt.

Hopefully smiling at strangers is a common occurrence in your life and if it isn’t, I hope you’re okay. Whether your interactions are this subtle or the more profound, honest conversations I think we are all truly craving. Connection is vital and you can begin to cultivate it with open, honest, conversation. Achieving a connection between individuals shouldn’t be so scarce but from what I have witnessed in today’s society it isn’t readily available to most. Cutting through the bullshit and having better chats and interactions can achieve this and comes with a range of other bi-products. Bi-products such as opportunity, joy, connection and knowledge. However, achieving this is a skill and like every skill takes hours of practice to truly consider yourself a master (10,000 hours apparently). There is a plus side that should keep the motivational fire burning though, because when you develop certain skill sets, the improvements you make can be seen, and like many skills the evidence of your own improvement becomes clear…take martial arts training for example; you’re unlikely to be dishing out any damage to anyone but yourself with your first roundhouse kick but 150 repetitions later it might start to look like something and after a few years of slamming your shins into the heavy bag I certainly would be doing everything in my power to keep you away from my ribcage.

When we do manage to wage our way in deep and or meaningful conversation; talking face to face with a comfortable amount of eye contact takes preference to an anger induced social media comment thread all day, every day. Going from an incredibly arrogant, cocksure and opinionated individual to a fairly arrogant, cocksure and opinionated individual – I’ve already learnt a lot of methodology and practice that can be put into place to help maximise the results of every interaction or conversation you have with someone. Be it in person or over social media. There are always limitations and due to the fact, we are finite beings living within the infinite and this seems to always be the case. That is unless of course we merge with artificial intelligence in a Ricky and Morty, Marvel comics type manor, evolve beyond our capabilities and takes the form of an omnipotent, conscious being with all the answers and good intentions we were created for. Hopefully leaving the remaining humans to just frolic around planting trees and painting. Why not be utopian?

Anyway. I am now going to share these insights with you, I welcome you to challenge them, if you can do so in a nice manor (otherwise people won’t listen, including myself) ß There’s your first. I hope the BuzzFeed-styled list format doesn’t make you want to throw yourself off a bridge as a 20-year-old naively suggests how we could all talk a bit better to each other from his quiet corner of the internet. Bare in mind that there are some conversations that are simply not worth having. If you hold a view point and someone opposes you then it really is your duty to either understand why they believe otherwise and attempt to change your own mind or help to change theirs – staying present and adaptive throughout the interaction.

I would like to note that there are however some conversations which simply aren’t worth having or at least your time could be better spent elsewhere because the time or evidence you would have to provide the other party to see past their point of view may be so vast that it would quite simply be inefficient to even continue especially when they are infected with bitter-bred ignorance. Frustration levels can sky rocket. I find the definition of a “sceptic” and “denier” that I derived from a tweet by Neil deGrasse Tyson quite a good example of when it’s worth cutting you’re loses during an exchange. A sceptic is someone who doesn’t take your stance on the issue at hand and naturally tends to disbelieve it – they’re however willing to change their mind, once provided with sufficient evidence. This is a good position to hold. A Denier is not willing to change their mind regardless of the information they are provided with, denying anything put there way and refusing to engage with most content regarding the subject – don’t be this person. It’s a very bad positions to hold.

I have no doubt there is much more to learn and I certainly haven’t perfected a single one of these techniques but when put into practice glimmers of progress and improved outcomes that certainly wouldn’t have surfaced a year or two ago have shone through and therefore, I recommend them to you.

Treat every encounter as a practice and remember to breath throughout – that bits important

Some Insights and Experiences

Be Present

This would be my prescribed advice for almost anything a person is to do. Get out your head. Stop talking to yourself when someone else is talking to you. Truly listen and absorb from a mutual position then allow the questions and answers you need to come through you and let the conversation develop.

The truth will prevail (in the long run) and you must be its ever-fighting champion – when appropriate.

Obviously, somethings are better not said; there’s no need to go running around a primary school shouting Santa isn’t real or telling a terrorist the best way to recreate, liquidise and then spray out Ebola. Apply some of your adult logic here. As humans, we should however hold telling the truth with a firm grip as we run through life and if it isn’t high on your list of priorities, I’ll let a google search tell you why being a pathological liar isn’t the best thing for you.

Keep it simple and be honest, you can’t tell a lie if you admit something is merely an opinion you harbour or that you don’t know enough on a subject to engage in it! People appreciate honesty and the value they hold for it means that it is usually reciprocated and can open a multitude of previously locked doors for you.

The Importance of saying “I don’t know”…

Comparing opinion to opinion isn’t going to get you anywhere, so unless you truly know your shit don’t engage in the topic as if you were an expert, having a hunch is all good and well but when you comment on some of the more serious issues of today such as climate change, crime, violence and politics it is probably better to listen to the experts, contemplatives, researchers and individuals who has invested significant amounts of time putting in the ground work. Ones you have yourself investigated and validated. I’m not a fan of the whole let’s ask Pete from Bendingford what he thinks about the currently political landscape of Seria, you have glimpsed this flimsy promotion-based engagement tactic from many of the larger mass media reporting institutions your used to seeing on a day-to-day basis. Saying “I don’t know” or “I don’t know enough about this subject to have an opinion”, can really bruise your ego, so do it! It’s all good and well having an outspoken personality but consistently talking out your arse with no real grounds for your opinions isn’t a good look. I love a “feeling” a “sense” a “hunch” but be careful if your riding into battle on the back of a conspiracy. I can tell you that it isn’t that hard to say “I need to look into this more” and it just opens you up to new information and ways of thinking.  Get over your self-indulged arrogance and understand that someone is almost defiantly going to know more than you on a subject seems like an undoubtably better stance to be taking to me.

Taking what others say to fast forward time…but do your own research.

To strengthen your argument that is. In terms of conversation it means don’t repeat bullshit and call people on their bullshit! As touched upon in the intro it’s impossible to taken in all the content regarding a conversation topic. Taking facts and opinions that have been reproduced accurately from reliable sources can be a brilliant way to fast forward your own intelligence and knowledge. However, this can go very wrong if your regurgitating ever other useless lie as god’s word and then going fourth to do more damage. When someone tells you a “fact” or “statistic”, make sure they can provide a good understanding of where it was sourced and who by; and that them themselves are a good judge of character. In proper sourcing can completely skew the general opinion and not everything produced as evidence is always valid data the levels of manipulation at play can be quite impressive. You must spend ample time learning to use your bullshit metre.

“After months of anal sex, he was enlightened”, which holy book do you recon that came from? Well apparently according to my understanding of the multiverse theory this has actually made it to all of them at some point but in our universe however to the best of my knowledge it hasn’t.

Sharpen your tools, use your head!

Little Tip… In many cases a book is an accumulation of someone’s life’s work. In which they summarise some of the most important things they have learnt along the way. Do yourself a favour and leapfrog that process and learn from them.  

Decent Eye-Contact… but not too much you’re not a messiah and your starting to freak me out.

Something that unfortunately cannot be achieved over most social media platforms and certainly isn’t achieved during the exchanges that take place between presumably loving emotional human beings and their Russian protagonists – fiercely engage in a rather embarrassing demonstration of unintellectual name-calling in attempt to share their opinion online. I’m fairly confident that over 75% of the shit that gets said over social media comment threads wouldn’t be said in real life when looking face-to-face, eye-to-eye with another human being. Londoners struggle to smile or nod at each other in their self-centred pursuits of all thing’s material, let alone call each other racists, homophobes and wankers. So, if

 you do get the opportunity to exchange some words with a friend or stranger, give them some eye contact. I’m pretty confident in guaranteeing you that you won’t turn into stone and I ask that you stop drowning yourself in social anxiety about what they are going to think. “Smile and wave boys”, don’t be out friendlied by an animated penguin. On the other hand, you don’t need to give unconditional and unbroken eye contact the entire exchange or you’re going to look insane and it isn’t going to give you the loving, warmed hearted, open minded look that I’m recommending.

Have a play around with it you’ll no when you get it right.

(get out, talk to people, look others in the eye…start living in the real world).

Trust yourself, your opinions and your gut but always remain open to new evidence and your brain adaptable to change

This is tricky one as it is contradictory by nature. Much of life is however and getting this balance right will undoubtably serve you well. This is ties in nicely with my article on presence “you are not the voice in your head!”, as for numerous reasons mental & physical health for you and people you come in contact with being the most prominent it is so important to live in the moment and listen to your gut instinct. If you don’t feel right about something or your feeling weird before taking part in an activity, this might be more than last nights curry piping up! Tune into your intuition and trust your gut however always remain open to new evidence. As mentioned before having a hunch or a sense that something is wrong is all good and well but you cannot pledge that again actual evidence or experience and always having an adaptable mindset (not being the “denier”) is so important. 

If someone doesn’t understand, you haven’t explained yourself well enough.

I have found taking this attitude towards interactions especially with people who I am particularly close to in my life has brought me much more peace. Taking full responsibility for yourself is something that should also be spoken as I think it is important to living a happy life (whilst understanding the limitations of the physical world). Having the ability to understand when you are wrong and apologise has resulted in me spending significantly less time ‘het’ up.

Questions, questions, questions!

Lead people to their own conclusions. Show them how you got to yours by asking them careful and logical questions it makes more a much nicer conversation and may even help them to elaborate their side of the discussion and change your mind! People are more willing to face their demons when they do it voluntarily. Push a man whose terrified of heights out of a plan with a parachute and he’s probably falling all the way to the bottom, convince him to jump himself and he’s still going down but I imagine he’s drop might be a little smoother.

I have heard this done so many times and I see questions as an indispensable tool when engaging in anything that takes the form of a conversation from a heated debate to a opened minded idea share. For example; if someone is ranting about how blue is the best colour in the world and you think it’s red. It could go a little like this:

“Blue is the best colour”, “no, red is the best colour”, “no, blue is the best colour”. Well done your conversation skills are at par with most 5-year olds. Now try “but what about all the people who think its green, do their opinions not matter? Are you more important than them?” It’s nicer than you simply shouting at them or telling them that they think they are more important than other people and allows them to come to the conclusion themselves. You’re also teaching them important thinking skills. Nice one you!

After writing these I began to listen to the philosophize this podcast series in which a detailed breakdown on Socrates on of the earliest, most heroic and influential philosophers describes how he made his very name from an intense questioning style which lead people to the conclusion they knew nothing. This didn’t go down very well and he was eventually sentenced to death but his work and legacy was continued by his faithful student Plato. I would highly recommend the podcast series as not only do you get the luxury of listing of information about philosophers and feeling all so sophisticated but you can pick up new profound insights, re-enforce old ones and further more continue to expand your mind.

I have also heard questioning yourself a good method for dispelling anxiety and worry, fear and anger. It can be used to flag up irrational emotions. So maybe we should unpack this a little more at a later date.

Mindful Talking – don’t talk for no reason

This is a notion that I have had highlighted for me by many Buddhist figures or people who walk similar paths. Joseph Goldstein has been described to me as one of the pioneers who began bringing eastern wisdom to the West and although I have only heard him through third-parties like the “Making sense” podcast with Sam Harris. I will be investigating his work at some point in the near future. It’s a simple message but don’t talk for no reason. Be aware of yourself and the words that are leaving your mouth a lot of what is said really doesn’t need to be and much of what isn’t should be. Start putting more value into your words and conversations and make them count.

Day to day people are unlikely to really care what you’re doing. You can learn more from listening.

I believe this article has been the longest yet and I appreciate anyone who has stuck with it. I also wanted to expand on the evolution of ideas but I have decided to save this for a later article. If you have valued this post in anyway please give it a like, a comment and a share. If you have any contradictions and questions to make please send them over and if you would like to correct me or educate me on any point please also get in touch this is a learning process for me. Much love.

Usual Spew; if you found any value in this article at all please like it on my website, on social media. Share, comment and all that jazz. It means a lot to receive feedback especially in these early days. Podcast’s including article readings are now available on all major platforms, although sound does seem to be an issue for some. If anyone could guide me as to why this is rather than the obvious (its to quiet) that would be great. I have played around with settings but so far to know success. Let me know if you even encounter this issue! Also, I plan on clocking in some more hours on the social media pages soon so please follow along on there to get a free piece by piece education as I try to repeat some of the little gems of knowledge or interesting words and noises I’m picking up on different subjects.

Comedy as a medium – going hand in hand with weed.

Easing into an adaptive mindset – enabling new minds.

See what I did there? Can you imagine the wee level of personal gratification I received by roughly inserting the blog domain in the title… plus I used the term “weed” in the title *audience gasps*, which probably grabbed your attention due to the nature of humans tending to frown upon and discourage any open public discussion about said plant. The funniest bit is, its not even that relevant, its more of an attention grabber and although a rather cheeky, divisive, tactic…you’re here now so please forgive me and enjoy this article. It is probably best for me to clearly spell out the fact that I am not advocating said banned plant and my views on said banned plant will require further development before public sharing. If you think that mentioning weed in the title makes me some kind of outlandish speaker then I recommend you ask yourself why? Moving away from my more regular attempts at being educated, I’m going to throw the rather cliché “don’t judge a book by its cover” quote in your face. I actually personally detest skunk and it’s really not the main focus of this particular block of text but if you’re not grown up enough to talk about it when the time does come and it really upsets you, there isn’t a lot I can do about it… Read something else or develop your communication skills and explain to me how I am in fact wrong to talk freely about the devils lettuce.

As much as this article is just a jumbled, mismatched, attempt to bring you up to speed with my own personal journey and education, I’m going to attempt to keep this write up a little lighter hearted than my previous two. I shall be judging, as always, the response to this article to see how it’s stomached. Receiving feedback is therefore non-negotiable and a crucial part of my personal development and quite possibly yours. Not sure if I can ram that down your throats anymore. In fact, I probably can but to spare me from such a fate give getting involved a little go. I’m probably one of the very few people who does in fact give a fuck what you have to say – you might enjoy sharing.

Joe Rogan, Russell Brand, Mark Manson, Books, Podcasts and Netflix. Something for everyone… Unless you’re a jihadist then I have nothing for you…

A mixed bag, right? On review these are were the first three figures who I believe acted as catalysts in provoking a new way of thinking for me and if you do your research a fair few million others. Mark Manson significantly less than the latter. I want to look at these figures in the way that I believe makes most sense. Firstly, mildly following the chronological order in which they appear to me and secondly in an order in which I believe allows your brain to become more malleable to the acceptance of new ideas; be it profound ancient wisdom, new world solutions or the breaking down of flimsy unjustified beliefs, that, if like me – you may have carried. I would say that if one was to look, read and listen to the shows, books and podcasts that I have suggested prior to this article, am currently recommending and will be continuing to promote then your brain is going to be sponging some really invigorating and refreshing, possibly new, ideas. Ideas which I believe will ultimately diffuse into and out of all areas of your life. If it’s all new to you then I’m excited for you, as the effect they had on me personally was exciting and transformative in what I truly believe is a positive light and if its old news then boo, I hope you still find my opinions on said pieces of content entertaining and informative to some degree. Don’t get me wrong these aren’t underground figures, they are giants in the modern world and are very well regarded, heavily established and widely recognised, however continuing to increase the level of public engagement and inspiring more individuals to investigate their works is precisely one of the goals that is driving my writing. I have regularly found that my own enthusiasm spills over onto the people around me and encourages them to take a gander themselves at whichever area of life has tickled my fancy and I’m attempting to do this with pieces typically disregarded as “boring”, educational pieces without context and string them together in a life changing way. 

Comedy as a medium,

Sitting and watching someone bang on about politics, consciousness, spirit and nature when you’re not really in touch with any of those topics can seem tedious. I get it. Especially if you don’t have an opinion on the topics and can’t interact. It can quickly become a lecture that’s possibly laying into the way you might just happen to live your life – no fun at all. However, when these ideas are carefully drip fed through rational comedy sketches, Netflix shows, podcast and books, it doesn’t seem so harrowing. This is why I think that comedy plays a crucial role in converting peoples thinking, allowing for an adaptive mindset and therefore, you guessed it, enabling new minds. 2/3.  It certainly did for me and as dreadfully boring as this sounds it really does make education fun. Eugh, it pains me to have to spell things out like that and possibly isn’t the right way of doing so but right now I haven’t found a better model for getting my point across so we are rolling with it.

In terms of comedy as a medium and its relation to the mystic realm there is a lot to say on comedians as shamans which is accompanied by both factual resemblances and historical evidence for their places within society. This is another topic I would like to explore further if the time comes in a separate piece of writing.  

Being in my opinion the most obviously entertaining with his respect demanding persona and the ability to both leave you in stiches and bring you to tears; Joe Rogan’s comedy and podcasts have caused a huge social media movement interviewing the likes of; Elon Musk, Kanye West, Derren Brown, Louis Theroux, Neil deGrasse Tyson and a wild range of sports persons, celebrities and Hero’s. His range in content has allowed him to gain an uncontrollable reputation with a couple million views on the vast majority of his videos and is one of the most popular figures along with Sam Harris on platforms such as the ‘Intellectual Dark Web’. I’m not going to bang on relentlessly about his achievements because he is such a mixed bag and its for you to discover but I would point you in the direction of his stand-up comedy on Netflix to begin with. It won’t be long before you’re on the Joe Rogan for president boat. Open mindedness and honesty run throughout but its his comedy which reached out and engaged me the most via Netflix and Spotify. Hard-nut, outspoken, mixed martial arts, weed smoking, liberal who commentates on the UFC… come on check him out. He smoked weed with Elon Musk live on a podcast, surely that intrigues you. His podcast on Spotify are all funny as fuck and he’s a total advocate for Marijuana use as well which is interesting- a few of my favourite quotes go as follows…

  • “Prison is for rapists, thieves and murderers. If you lock someone up for smoking a plant that makes them happy, then you’re the fucking criminal” – Joe Rogan
  • “the only way marijuana can kill you is if someone takes 25 pounds of it and throws it out of a CIA drug plane and it hits you in the fucking head. That’s how you die from marijuana” – Joe Rogan

There was also something along the lines of weed doesn’t make you a loser, being a loser makes you a loser, don’t use weed to justify it, if it wasn’t pot it would be sugar or burgers etc etc. I kind of agree with this but don’t really want to get into breaking this down as I have a lot to say on the subject and I’ll save that for a future article in which the pot heads can deny or subsequently relish in.

Now Mark Manson’s book “The subtle art of not giving a fuck”, really touches on Joe Rogan’s attitude and the one I try to implement on myself – failingly. It basically states the fact that you’re always going to care about something / give a fuck, but you have to choose what’s really important to you. What do you want to give a fuck about? are you giving your fucks to the right thing? etc. Do I get mad at the foxes in the garden for letting out their botty bashing death rattles in the middle of the night or when someone moved my keys and now, I’m going to be late for work? Or do I save my fuck giving for the values and matter in which are more important? My Family, my friends whatever I draw true and pure meaning from. I hope I have accurately communicated the gist of the book or at least how I interpreted it and  I will be re-reading it and possibly putting up a proper book review at some point but for anyone who wants to get going on it, I would highly recommend giving it a read its light hearted, fun and seems to contain a certain amount of possible life-altering content.

All of this can be elaborated on and undoubtedly will be revisited in the future but I wanted to save some space to talk about Russell Brand, his books and most importantly to me, his podcast series “Under the Skin”. You may not be as lucky as me to be in a position to listen to this throughout your day but Spotify is a free service and the premium version isn’t particular expensive either. First and foremost, I would like to personally thank Russell Brand for his work in the under the skin podcasts. They truly are informative, engaging and transformative and have personally helped to significantly improve my understanding of this world as well as plant the seed for starting this project myself.

It is as if he and his team have designed a personal guide on opening and expanding your mind to the world around us. I can truly see the importance of these podcasts; to act as a well needed stepping stone in converting the mindsets of millions of young people and I believe it will play a significant role in the overall shift of consciousness that needs to rapidly undergo many of us. To me it clearly and precisely outlines areas of key importance to the soul, the future of mankind and touches on issues that should be in the forefront of our collective discussions as a species. His series and the accompanied information and insights inspired me to share my own story and continue to study and promote these ideas as the levels of human injustice which even some of the most privilege of us face, the unhappiness and discontent that even many millionaire bankers must surely be feeling became clearer. How we must begin to engage in as much open minded, adaptive discussion as we can to begin to tackle some of these individual issues at the core! Sam Harris is discussing the maintenance of civilisation in one of his older podcasts and touches upon the fact that its not “what we think” that is important; Its “how we think”, having the ability to see the other side of an argument and not being so set in our ways that we cannot admit that their might be a better path or a different way of looking at things. This must become a universal concept for humans if we are to progress further and in my opinion is the biggest challenge facing human-kind. To me, education, compassion and having these free-flowing discussions will make positive change possible. This idea of a better thinking pattern and clearer conversation is what currently interests me more than anything and you will undoubtably be hearing much more on it from me.

Whilst I’m on the subject of old Russ – I wanted to also credit him on his most recent book “recovery”, focusing on the 12-step programme and significantly urbanising it by replacing almost every other word in the 12-step overview with “fucked” and although I found some segments of the book rather unnecessary with both its narrative and choice of language… I don’t want to discredit the fact that it has probably done a whole load of good in the world and has certainly helped me gain a better perspective and lid on my own addictive behaviours… including; stopping smoking, increased control over my eating habits and helped to control a fair few other addictions I seemed to have been riddled with. Many large sections of the book are also hilarious and offer extremely profound insights so it has undoubtably made it onto my Enable New Minds Reading List.

Hopefully this article has still been engaging and it has possibly provided you a few areas to dive into and enjoy. Please do check these shows and podcasts with an open mind, welcome them with arms wide open and strive to seize upon the value in which I promise lies within them – the knowledge and insights, I have found and made use off. If there is anything you would like me to elaborate on, are confused about or have any questions or feedback for me feel free to send me a message through, Email, Facebook or Instagram. Feel free to follow my social media accounts which are currently pumping out daily quotes, statistics, ideas, etc in attempt to actually help give you some of the language tools to engage, things I have picked out from the works I have been studying which I feel are worth a brief read through on your shiny screen. If you enjoyed reading this or like me as a friend and want to support my work give this a share! Yes, I am stating that if you don’t share this you are essentially “not coming to my birthday party” and my parties are good.

You know the drill. Peace out.

Enable new minds… 3/3.

Have we got donations wrong…? Some thoughts.

Some housekeeping, clarity searching, brain dribble, transparency, promotion and a call for information!

This article serves multiple functions; clarifying my own thoughts surrounding donations derived from a recent experience with a promotion, attempting to be completely transparent with my audience about my intentions, further promotion of a good cause and a call out for information! I know many of you will be happy to hear this is under half the length of my last two pieces and with a slightly different flavour, as I explore my own predispositions amongst other things.  

Is talking publicly about donations taboo? Now maybe I’m totally off the ball here and I hope that this isn’t me playing some weird mental game with myself as a technique to justify my own actions, however, having recently made a significant investment to a project I wanted to both support and capitalise on as an advertising tool I have been very two sided about whether I believe this is morally right, wrong or a total non-issue. Therefore, I wanted to honestly spell out my thoughts and intentions on the issue. Should I think I feel guilty about publicising this donation because it looks like I’m doing so to further my own ego and I quite possibly could be; however, this could be a case of completely over-thinking and there’s nothing wrong with it at all.

What I actually did was invest some money buying some t-shirts for a project called plogolution. They are doing amazing work, setting up meetings around the UK (primarily London) and going into schools – in attempt to get both children and adults to go out and collect rubbish in their local area (and there doing quite a successful job of it!). I chose them because their cause is pure, true, has amazing benefits to the environment and brings the community together, I love it. However, I can also see how brilliant it is and I expect them to become very popular and therefore by buying them t-shirts with their logo accompanied by website links to my projects as well – it would hopefully gain some traffic towards the websites and social media accounts I have directed them to. There is a positive effect on both parties and I’m doing nothing wrong by drawing further attention to this by showing it on social media.

Full link to the Plogolution website –
Enable New Minds social media can be found – @enablenewminds

I want to be honest to myself and the public to the fact that I am not just skipping around giving money to charity causes, there was multiple incentives, one of which being It was done with the intention to benefit me as well. I already feel a lot better by airing this thought and would be extremely interested to hear others opinion on it! From there I can then take further action if necessary. I’m squirting these thoughts straight out onto the page and will likely upload them this way but am interested to see what others think? Am I right in feeling guilty about this, or is that ridiculous, or in fact is there some deeper dogma around talking about donations in which I should pursue and investigate – if you deem it interesting enough!

Side note time…I have often thought that if we choose to distribute our disposable income towards more positive projects in our communities and across the globe oppose to excess cloths, newer cars and other materialist items it would shift the way the world views production. The great capitalistic machine that runs our society would find its attention surely shifting towards companies who are doing great things as that is where people are putting their money! We could direct the paths that old and new companies take but to do so the vast majority would have to be willing to put their money in the right place, something people may be reluctant to do, may not have the privilege to do and something that may not be so easy to identify! I do think there is a shift towards this type of economy already and I think the answer to a lot of global environmental problems may lie within it! I shall explore the idea of targeting our purchasing power and ideas such as gift economies in another article!

If anyone has any links to content regarding anything mentioned above – I would be grateful for it being sent my way. Thanks.

Advertising logo for the other project in question.

You are not the voice in your head!

Contentment and Joy.

I need to go to work, when shall I leave? What time is my alarm set for? Oh, I’m guna need some lunch… there’s nothing in the fridge, okay ill buy some stuff at work but that’s not healthy and I can’t afford it, how can I afford it? I better work more… Should I go to the gym tonight? No, I need to work extra hours… how can I get a raise? shut the fuck up. The malignant mind is a disease which has taken over the vast majority of our population. It doesn’t need to be this way. You can choose to switch of that incessant chatter; using your brain as a problem-solving tool, not a problem creating tool, as and when its required, still function perfectly, going about your day to day, but as a more productive, efficient, loving and peaceful human being. Uh oh he said love and peace, well…

“leaving aside the metaphysics, mythology and sectarian dogma, what contemplatives throughout history have discovered is that there is an alternative to being continuously spellbound by the conversations we are having with ourselves, there is an alternative to simply identifying with the next thought that pops into consciousness”

If that beautiful quote by Sam Harris taken from his book Waking Up’ wasn’t enough and you still find yourself eye rolling at the mention of inner peace there’s not a lot I can do, either your past experiences trump mine or you currently self-identify as the voice in your head – your ego and therefore your mind will do everything possible to disregard, fight and object this concept because shutting off that voice occasionally would be to silence yourself (which may not be a bad thing either).

If this isn’t the case and your life is in fact a true and pure abundance of happiness, completely without flaw then please crack on – who the fuck am I to even suggest otherwise? My best guess however, is that it isn’t and the lurking feeling of discontent isn’t shrinking as much as you try to bury it in money, drugs, sex, alcohol, video games, phones or by whatever other subconsciousness form arises as the driving force that steadies you as you continue ploughing on grudgingly through the mass ball of confusion and unanswered questions which is our fragile existence within the expanding and the unlimited. Mouthful. This needn’t be the case and it is very possibly to feel more content, more connected and more love right now by stopping the incessant compulsive thinking and halting the malignant mind. A process which grows easier and easier with practice, as contrary to popular belief – practice makes permanent (for the better or for the worse).

Just look beyond the dogma and preformed opinions you may have about presence, mindlessness, inner peace or whatever other words you associate as “hippie snowflake” language and hear this out. I’m speaking from first-hand experience as a 20-year-old construction worker from England, whom having recently introduced the concept of disassociating myself from my mind and observing my thoughts have certainly found my life being filled with an ever-growing list of positive changes. Content being the most obvious, followed quickly by the removal of many harmful substances and environments for when you live in the now and you take every moment as it’s own, fighting addiction doesn’t seem so hard as you reconnect – as connection is in fact the opposite of addiction. I’m proof that you don’t need to have lived through the 60s and 70s, smoke weed and stick incense sticks up your bum to put these principles into practice. Not that I’m disregarding any of that or denying my own engagement with incense-stick, marijuana-based foolery but I’ve derived my opinions from well-established sources who’s impacts worldwide are undeniable. Those 535 million practising Buddhist we have on our planet might have just been on to something. 

A massive thank you is in order to anyone who took precious time out off their day to read my first article and to anyone reading this now! The comments I received and the support people gave me was incredibly uplifting and the public response made it clear that my efforts weren’t in vain. It was requested that I elaborate on this topic and seeing as it was the first thing I spoke about and many of the ideas I’ve formed were derived from the first book I read – this is the path I shall be taking.

‘The Power of Now’ by Eckhart Tolle was given to me by a close friend when I opened up to him about my feelings of discontent, feelings that I believe are shared and ignored by a vast proportion of society. There is no possible way that I could relay and summarise the 236-page book and its included ancient wisdom with more clarity, in a brief blog article, after only one read, but I shall certainly attempt it and I hope my portrayal of this message can inspire you to read the book and begin your own journey of love, happiness, self-discovery and awareness. Yes, that does mean you might have to read something or at least get the audio book. Before reading ‘The Power of Now’ I had begun to formulate a few basic ideologies and slogans which I was living my life by; 1. Work hard play hard 2. Moderation in all things 3. The fact we are here is a miracle and therefore life should be treasured and 4. Someone is always worse off and therefore you should be grateful. Now some of these motto’s are pure and true and worked on some personal levels for me, however, some did not. They lacked depth, understanding and experience and the fact I took pleasure in knowing that someone is worse off than me oppose to using that same knowledge to be the driving force for being nice or helping others, I can now see as slightly twisted and deranged – they certainly required an upgrade. The book provided me with this and so much more. I can only describe my experience with it through metaphor; imagine you’re trying to complete a 1000-piece puzzle but you’ve only got two or three pieces, they’re all crumpled and dirty and then someone comes along and hands you the fully finished piece; all shiny and glossy. It was overwhelming and had an instantaneous and profound effect on me. As happy as I became with the new-found knowledge provided for me by this book, it was clear that this was just one of many great puzzles I am to complete as I try to become a better, more rounded and aware human being on my journey through life.

In short and to the best of my knowledge; to be present is to shut off the inner voice or to at least recognise it and observe it from a non-judgemental position. Focusing on the internal and the external that you experience in that moment, for all we have is the now, you can only ever be in the present moment, so by bringing this to attention and learning to enjoy what’s currently going on rather than thinking about the past or the future can generate a great sense of contentment and joy (real contentment and joy, nothing superficial about it). It can also help to perish that long list of wants we all seem to carry. Everything blurs into one in the now and looking at each individual moment as its own makes it hard to hold on to anger, allowing you to be more at peace with the people and the world around you. You can have a higher level of focus and clarity on the tasks you’re completing and waiting becomes a thing of the past, as you are now solely enjoying the moment – taking it and accepting it for what it is. Again, easier said than done when its 6pm in the hospital waiting room and your appointment was at 12… or you’re ridden with cold, nose and face is streaming and you’ve got to spend the next six hours stuffing insulation into wall cavities… but it is achievable.

The more this sensation of true mindlessness is experienced, the easier it becomes to take yourself to this place. Close your eyes, concentrate, and tell me what your next thought it going to be? Anything come up? Now stare intensely at your finger, any thoughts? Its possible that during these activities you experiences no thought because you increased your level of focus. You may have disconnected the flow of incessant chatter. Now I can only maintain this myself for a small amount of time but with just a few attempts at home and during yoga – I believe I’ve had some success. When I get myself into this state, I find my body being filled with happiness and love, the level of which varies on how well I’ve controlled my mind (if that’s the right word). Its not all about peace and love though. Practising “Being in the now” can; increase and improve your concentration, your reflexes, your memory and most importantly and something I can attest to is that it can improve your relationships with the people around you; loved ones, friends, family and total strangers, as it removes your judgements, biases and discriminations and allows you to build a proper connection as it bypasses the narratives that we have been telling ourselves, that make up our judgements and opinions. People appreciate this raised level of attentiveness, it’s recognised, and you might just find things going your way a little bit more. If someone starts beeping me up in the car, I don’t want to get out and tell him to fuck off I just feel bad for him, why’s that person so mad? What has led them to get to this point. Human judgement and interaction are other topics I look forward to exploring.

I’ve noticed thousands of positive changes from attempting to apply this technique in my life as and when I can. I would love to share with you my little day to day techniques another time but for now I want to leave you with something that will hopefully encourage your own pursuit of inner peace. As well as a few momentary feelings of happiness and an overall positive increase on my outlook on the world, I’ve had two crazy moments which have stood out for me after managing to maintain what I believe is a high level of presence for a significant amount of time. I have experienced such powerful feelings of ecstasy, joy and happiness that they have been similar to previous experiences of taking MDMA but without the gurning or maybe a more classical moment like winning something big or whatever -I’m from Medway – I draw from what I know. One beginning during a day playing my role as a construction worker… the other a bit more cliché after speaking to a friend after a yoga class. Both times I’ve managed to maintain being entirely in the now for an extended period, functioning normally as a human being and getting on with my day to day yet being close to tears, feeling nothing but content and gratitude with no external influences other than taming my mind. If you cannot engage with the idea of being present for inner peace at least let your path begin with the quest for this sensation. You bloody junkies.

Much Love    

Learning images taken from Instagram & Facebook accounts @enablenewminds

Side note time; if you thought the content was valuable in any way to you, or to someone else, please give it a share, a LIKE and drop me some feedback. Received heaps of support after my last article as I said… but please keep it up as it helps me improve further and most importantly makes me feel good, you may even find you yourself smiling as you write me a lovely comment 😉. I would also like to add that if everyone could wham a like onto the actual article on my website and maybe go back and do the one before… that would be great too, as it was defiantly slacking in the online-like department.

Peace out.

Welcome to my learning blog… we are all fucking stupid and one day we will die…

Try to smile and enable new minds.

You only have one life and it’s one continuous moment, one continuous feeling, one continuous presence in which every human being, animal, plant, and atom experiences simultaneously, until it stops. At what point each of those experiences stop in terms of consciousness is yet to be discovered by science, religion or conspiracy and is overlooked daily by the vast majority. I believe that having a good understanding of each of these possibilities is a good basis as to become a grounded human being. Being able to understand other people’s beliefs and perspectives and how they were formed allows you to act non-judgmentally knowing that there isn’t an answer to many of the great questions of life. This can then by-pass conflict and allow constructive conversations to take place regarding the issues at hand.

The fact we don’t know should scare and excite you. Every second of your existence be it as a single mind or a great collective consciousness passes just as the next one arises. It is this belief that fuels me to embrace every second, finding the silver lining in the worst moments and maximising the potential of the so called “dull” moments. Being present is the only way to truly do this and this idea has been supported by many of the key figures and ideologies which I have begun to study. To see the life in the faces of individuals and to feel every sensation that our body experiences. I’m pretty shite at doing this and can only maintain this level of presence for a few precious seconds at a time before my mind begins to flood with crazy ego driven desires and projections of negative situations. It’s this incessant brain waffle which screws us as humans; our values and our mental well-being. We either want something more or become unhappy with the way things are, we produce positive scenarios in our heads that can never be achieved or we create terrifying outcomes that hold us back, basically we become unhappy as we try to control that, that cannot be controlled. The rate and potency at which the realisation that we are not as aware as we believe we are differs between individuals. Going completely unnoticed for some masked by the flood of distractions provided for us by the modern world.

A little hard hitting I know but I hope introducing these ideas slowly will stop them becoming overwhelming and instead allow for a fresh outlook to form. For many this is old news but you are not the voice in your head! I will explore that concept in more detail at a later date but for now I don’t want to scare friends off with the so called “hippie bullshit” just yet.

I will explore that concept in more detail at a later date but for now I don’t want to scare friends off with the so called “hippie bullshit” just yet.

A recent series of drug induced psychotic episodes combined with the deflating realisation that making money and achieving ego fuelled goals doesn’t make you happy and, in my experience, never truly will as we attempted to tick off a box on our never-ending shopping lists. This began a progressive change in my outlook and combining this with my previously misguided lust for life has helped me to generate this new-found love for knowledge. As a 20-year-old male from Kent I have been surrounded by materialism, individualism and egoic ideals my whole life, and although I still believe materialism, individualism and the ego do have a place in society, I don’t believe it should be the main focus for mankind and as these concepts grow, they have devastating repercussions to individuals, the earth and all that inhabits it. When material possessions take priority over basic human concepts such as love it becomes clear there is an underlying problem. I have been lucky enough to be raised in healthy living conditions and environments, having received the perfect mix of the two combined with the scenarios I have been through and the choices I have made have eventually led me to grow and have allowed me to see through the fog I was previously living in, setting me off on a new path to make better choices. I have personally experienced the differences in lifestyles and I cannot see why anyone would healthily choose to go back after making this conversion. Family, friends and strangers have commented on this and although my choices have improved and my outlook streamlined, many of my actions are still dreadfully incorrect and will require far greater levels of scrutiny. The fact I am beginning to understand this and am becoming aware of my own faults is the most important first step for me. This idea has been relayed heavily by many key philosophers and religious figures across the globe and throughout history.

The population of aware intelligent human beings or at least that I have personally encountered is very small. We are very fucking stupid; the vast majority of human beings continuing to blindly follow the patterns laid out for them by the previous generation of people who didn’t understand how to live a truly meaningful life – the evidence of which surrounds us. I am certainly no way near living such a life myself but laughably four books down and over 50 hours in podcast later I’m feeling a lot better about what is really important. So, in attempt to motivate myself to think, read and write, I shall begin using a blog to write articles and to attempt to share the most important sections of what I’m choosing to study. I want to begin relaying information from books & podcasts, key characters & statistics, ideologies, religions and politics publicly, with an open honest mind as truthfully as I can. This should motivate me to write and help to clarify my own ideas whilst simultaneously opening them up to criticism and allowing further discussion to take place. This is the path that I believe the rest of my blog will follow, hopefully being directional, semi-entertaining and informative as it unfolds. If I can inspire a few individuals to follow this path or begin upon their own journey of discovery then that’s a bonus. It is my current belief that it is only through the honest interactions of individuals and the successful communication of ideas between them that positive change can happen in this world. This belief has been derived from many of the significant figures who’s works and reputations, past and present speaks for themselves.

There’s no doubt that the frequency of interesting thought-provoking conversations being had between young people is increasing, from my own experience I’m finding the nature of many of my discussions be it at work, travelling or outside a pub at 4am turning into questions of politics, spirit and the future and I’m not always the advocate of these kinds of topics. There’s an unavoidable depth in the youth of today, most likely down to the crazy political landscape we live in; with the environment being an example of an unignorable topic moving to the forefront of discussion.

My sister (aged 15) recently said to me that “all adults seem unhappy, everyone seems unhappy but you’re like the happiest adult I know and I feel like I have a good chance at being happy as an adult because you’re my brother”, now I didn’t just wham that in there to make me look good, well that wasn’t my main intention. The fact is I’m not even as happy as I could be, I’m aware of that, in fact I’m a miserable fuck most of the time, so how fucking sad are we all? Whether my so-called happiness is due to my own youth having not yet faced the tests of time, I don’t know but I truly think that as we evaluate our own behaviours and increase our understanding of the world in the right way, we can learn to live happily amongst one and other; humbled and exhilarated by the great expanse of the unknown.  

To make all my true motivations clear I will be fighting myself with all my might to not make money and personal gain the primary focus of my writing although making an extra penny would of course be a new-found dream come true! Sharing my opinion publicly on the facts and theories of all the great minds and texts that continue to expand my consciousness both thrills and terrifies me but I cannot help but think about it and therefore I’m going to run with it for a while. I am no newbie when it comes to trial and error and having attempted different business ideas and so-called social media quests which have succeeded, failed and dwindled out. I’m giving this a shot but with learning at the heart of this endeavour it seems it cannot fail to be at the least personally beneficial. Welcome to my learning blog.

Second from the right, my scruffy little face, hopefully creating a sense of the person of whom this is coming from :), not the guy who’s been invited to try clay pigeon shooting; in case that was to becomes an issue for someone – but the human.

Side note… Although I’m not hiding my identity, I’m using the name alias “enable new minds” to allow me to use different social media platforms whilst maintaining separation between my writing and my personal life. It’s quite a cool name which kind of concludes the aims of my own personal education although it does act as if I’m already some kind of important writing body or organisation of which I am not.

In attempt to gain headway with my writing I’ll be shamelessly promoting this across social media and I hope that anyone who at the least has found this vaguely interesting could do the same and show their support. I consider this compulsory of my close friends and family and I welcome constructive feedback from anyone be it through private messaging or below if I can generate a comments section. Any support and/or insight would really mean a lot, helping me to develop further and gauge how this has been received. Much love.

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