o-oops-sign-facebookAlthough it might be a coincidence, this morning I had an experience that could connect to the fact it is Blue Monday. As on every regular working day I went to catch a specific train, the 7:39 Intercity to Rotterdam. Due to work on the railway line less trains are running every hour and this Monday I could clearly see the consequences. The platform was crammed with people that usually distribute themselves over three different trains. I was kind of lucky I could still fit in the overcrowded train and had to stand in the pathway without having anywhere to hold myself except the ceiling.

While standing there I was wondering where an annoying beep was coming from. I was looking around and noticed more people were wondering what was producing the noise. As several other people I had my phone in my hand to report I had no seat in this train ride using the railway’s app. The beeping stopped but soon started again and slowly it came to me I could have been the source of the sound…

I started to feel uneasy while frantically looking for an app on my phone that is able to connect to a small device on my key ring. Exactly! The source of the beeping was a tiny Bluetooth device that I can use to track my keys. For some odd reason it had decided to beep as if it was prompted to do so by my phone. I managed to connect and make sure it stopped beeping. A few beeps later it kept quiet but I was still quite embarrassed. I decided to get out a stop earlier and walk 20 minutes to my destination to get over my embarrassment.

But why did I feel so embarrassed? Why heart was beating fast and I almost got lightheaded. Looking back I see it has been a situation where I allowed my mind to play a game with me boosted by the fact I was still recovering from being sick and not yet feeling completely fit. Not feeling well can be extra challenging when having to stay self aware and breath myself through a spinning series of thoughts in order to stop these and focus on the real actions to take in order to solve the problem.

Interesting to see that such a small situation as a device that beeps can lead to quite some stress in a situation where other factors play a role: A overcrowded train, standing uncomfortably without having good support, a stomach that was still not fully cooperating and this beeping device! I was surprised and kind of overwhelmed by the experience. It was a good example of how my mind was able to create an instant moment of anxiety expressed as embarrassment and cause a strong physical reaction. This made it even harder to properly react to the situation and take it just breath by breath, focusing on resolving the cause of the problem in the best way possible.

I’ve also learned that my first reaction in this and probably any other situation is to blame something outside of me, anything else but myself. And that was also part of the embarrassment. I found out that if there was someone to blame for the beeping sound… it was me! So, stop the blame altogether, I had to face my own blame, and that is not nice. And there was no need for blame of any kind. The next time I will try to be more aware of what is happening in that specific moment and first check myself to make sure I am not the cause.


Profit driven environmental projects

In our valleys there is a discussion going on about a series of windmills that will be placed in the middle of the uncontaminated nature as a contribute to ‘green’ and alternative energy production. It would have been a nice project if the starting point was a different one. There is a resistance movement that is mainly aiming at the visual impact of these huge windmills in the landscape. Nobody is actually looking and investigating the real motivation behind the construction of these mills.

This morning I left a comment on a post that mentioned an article in the local newspaper stating the words of a local politician about the mayor of his town not willing to see the whole project is doomed to become a huge farce and listed a series of reasons. I missed the main reason that is the drive behind projects like this one: Money, or better, Profit.

There is a comparable situation in Sicily where a series of windmills have been places in a nice looking valley. The mills are ready to work and all set, there is one problem… there is no wind! The people responsible for the project knew this and there is now an investigation going on to find out if the data used for the wind average has been manipulated. At the end a couple of persons will get exposed, but the building companies, the engineering company and the high level politicians are still smiling with their pocket filled with money.

In my comment I explained that classical opposition to this kind of plans is exactly what is desired for this kind of projects. It is distracting people from the real thing. I suggested we should start to ask the question: “Who is going to make profit from it?” in order to make people aware of how things are working in our society. I just had a look at the discussion thread to find out people started discussing and mainly started pointing to others that either were the cause of the problem or should have been working on the solution.

I wrote a second comment pointing out that since we are all responsible for all our actions in every moment there is no point in pointing your finger towards others and concluding with the fact we have to radically change the way we live starting with changing our monetary system. There is no escaping at the end, we need to change, we need to BE the change.