Planes In The Sky

July 11th, 2016 No comments

I didn’t invent them. I don’t build them and I certainly don’t own them.
Technologically, I’m way behind. I simply don’t know how they operate and what makes them work properly.

Because I’m so far behind in the technological race, doesn’t this in effect make my life pointless? What could I possibly have to add to this world that will make it a better place and make me feel like I am a contributor?

After all, I want more than just a paycheck. I want to try and have some sort of impact that will make a lasting and positive difference; maybe even in the lives of others. It’s not that I want my name to be echoed through the ages but there is a part of me that wants to be remembered and I am hoping that my almost 7 year old daughter already has positive memories and images of me.

But there are those planes in the sky. My frustration lingers. Not everyone gets to be Howard Hughes. Not everyone writes the equation to relativity. I wrestle with myself. I fight myself. I try and assure myself that I am living a life worth living and I am living a life that has meaning.

What will today bring? Maybe not much of anything. Maybe something. I am hopeful.

As always, it’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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Writing With Belief

June 24th, 2016 No comments

Before you write something, something that is really good, you have to believe it. You have to believe in what you are saying.

If you don’t, you lack passion and conviction.
That’s my problem, I lack the passion to write and I am not convinced in what I am saying.

Part of me is in agony writing this. Part of you must be in agony reading this.

I just don’t believe it yet. There are too many other worldly problems that go way beyond what I am saying.

Am I a fraud? Am I a phony? Is what I have to say worthwhile?

I never think I am good enough.

It’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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It All Fades

March 1st, 2016 No comments

Parting ways with your high school sweetheart.
Saying good-bye to the woman of your dreams.
Separation and divorce from your beloved wife.
Long periods of time apart from your daughter.

All these losses and evolution of life eventually fade from memory. The intensity of emotion associated with the memories also eventually fade. It’s not that you don’t care it’s just that you learn to cope and overcome the grief of the losses.

Would the magnitude of the losses make it easier to lie in bed all day with no motivation and drive to take on the day in front of you? In a word, yes. But perhaps you want more for yourself despite all of the losses. You still want to try and make something of yourself and make some sort of difference in the world.

Eventually, no matter how severe the loss, it all fades and all that is left is you, on your own. There is still time to figure things out and make sense of things.

If you ever want to talk, I know it’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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Can You See Or Envision Yourself Doing It?

February 21st, 2016 No comments

If your answer to this question is yes than your likely on your way to doing it.
For example, if you can envision yourself going to the gym and actually doing the repetitions of the exercise there’s a good chance you’ll do it.

You need to see it in your head and embrace the image.

Similarly, if you can see yourself going on a hike through the woods in the beautiful fresh air there’s a good chance you’ll do it. You need to feel the trees and see the path in your mind. See yourself walking on the path with a smile on your face.

Try to see it in your mind and go from there.
You might be surprised as to how motivated you become.

In essence, your mind becomes all powerful and dictates what you will do.

It’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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It’s A Good Day!

February 20th, 2016 No comments

I wake up early with the sunrise. A perfectly blue sky.
I rise out of bed and don’t feel overly stiff.
I have a few things planned for the day that need to be done. I’ll be relatively busy.

My daughter is exploring in California with her Mom this weekend.

I just put in another full week of work.

All in all and so far, it’s a good day!

Try and approach the day with as positive a mindset as possible whatever your circumstance is.

It’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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When Internal Tension Interferes With Logic

February 18th, 2016 No comments

Most of us are aware of the feeling; a tightening in stomach that feels like tangled up knots. It’s unpleasant. It’s uncomfortable. It makes it difficult to sit still in any kind of content way.

It also has the ability to cloud our logical thinking and make us do and say irrational things. It throws us off kilter and changes dynamics in our relationships. Our inputs to other people are skewed and off the mark. Internal tension effects us in so many different ways it is hard to conceptualize.

Internal tension unsettles our emotions and contributes to us making more emotional decision-making. When we once thought we were rational decision-makers, the knots in our stomach steer us off course and leave us with a jittery sense of being – an uncertainty about ourselves that threatens our efficacy.

So what breeds internal tension? How does it come about and throw our logic over the side of the boat?

It may be safe to say that the arising of internal tension is an existential problem. We are uncertain of who we are and how we contribute to society so the tension begins to build in our being and decay daily efforts. Other people may say that internal tension arises because of relational reasons or how we are relating to the people in our life. If interactions aren’t positive and productive we begin to feel the tension slowly seep into who we are and we wonder how we are going to continue to relate to the people in our life. Better yet, some scientific experts may believe that internal tension is simply a biochemical process that has to do with the transmission of chemicals in our systems that leaves us feeling a certain way with corresponding actions. Other analysts may state that internal tension is a result of how active or healthy our sex life is and how often we get to express our fantasies to someone intimate and important in our life.

There are innumerable ways to look at the arising of internal tension and how eventually it interferes with logical decision-making. And some people may not care about this thesis. Some people simply believe that living life should be based on emotional decision-making and engaging every enticing whim. To hell with logic and how it shapes our thinking and decisions. Our hedonistic emotions should not be denied and we need to embrace our spirit.

Nevertheless, an abundance of internal tension can lead to a negative view of the self, poor health outcomes, and very poor decision-making (because our thinking is clouded by tension or emotion).

The beginnings of internal tension and building up of it in the individual need to be carefully monitored and taken in stride. If the individual is feeling overwhelmed by the tension and subsequent tension steps need to be taken to alleviate the problem and restore balance to the individual.

I’m not saying here that I have the answers for such problems, yet it may be prudent to talk to someone you trust about your feelings and tension so someone understands what you are going through. Perhaps it may be wise to book an appointment with a clinical psychologist or medical professional. Mental health professionals and medical professionals typically have effective ways of re-framing your situation and helping you to see things in a new light (often referred to as cognitive restructuring or cognitive refinement). Or try writing down your thoughts and feelings on a sheet of paper as a cathartic expression of self.

Internal tension is not to be taken lightly and it can heavily influence how you feel and how you make decisions. You may be doing things you would have not otherwise done.

Have you ever felt internal tension begin to overwhelm your being? How did it make you feel? How did you deal with it or cope with it?

I always love to hear your thoughts.
I’d love to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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Are You Awake?

February 13th, 2016 No comments

Years ago I used to run along the beach in the very early morning. I’d rise out of bed in the morning at 4:30am – 5:30am while my family was still asleep and drive up to Del Mar. I’d park my vehicle in front of the Deli and walk a 1/4 mile down to the beach where I’d begin my run. It really was something special to run along the surf and hear the waves gently roll in. Sometimes the water would run close to my feet and I’d have to retreat closer to the cliffs where the sand was more dry.

I don’t remember what I thought of when I ran in the pitch black near those cliffs. I probably thought of anything and everything. How magical it felt to be running along the beach with no one else out there. How eerie it was to do this at the same time. When I ran in the early morning my life was filled with a sense of purpose and I felt like I could take on the day and any day with more passion and inspiration than anyone around me.

I was on top of world and living my dreams to a maximum.

These days I don’t rise as early. My work day starts later and I feel groggy and stiff in the morning. I’m adamantly hoping that it’s just a phase and I will return to my lively and ambitious self before long. Life circumstances change and our circadian rhythms change with them.

I still hear the surf rolling in in the early hours of the morning. It’s permanently ingrained in my head. What would I give to go back to those days? What would I give to recreate those days? I’m not sure. It’s hard to put a price tag on it. I guess I would say it’s priceless.

So I must ask you; are you awake?

If you aren’t, what might you be missing?
What memories could you create for yourself that will carry you forward during the lowest of times?

I’d love to hear what you’ve lived…
I’d love to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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If Everyone Were Like…

February 8th, 2016 No comments

If everyone were like George, Tiffany and Pauline the world would be a better place.
These people, part of my every day job routine, are examples of great people.
Just ordinary people going about their daily work routines making the extra effort in relationships. They’re talkative, engaging, inclusive and encouraging. They care about who you are and what you do no matter what your job title is or what your job duties entail.

In short, they go above and beyond just because your another human being and they’re interested in what you’re doing. Perhaps a rare and elusive quality these days.

Interestingly, George is an IT guy. Pauline is a cashier. And Tiffany is part of employee wellness. Not that there’s any correlation between what they do and who they are as people; it’s just interesting to note what they do and who they have decided to be as people.

I’m not trying to belabor the point here in any way I just thought it neat to share this little tidbit about a great group of people that fight their way through each and every day just like everyone else. And by anyone’s measure they’re going through each day with as positive a mindset as possible while enriching the lives of those around them.

It feels good to elevate the social standing and status of other people especially when it is merited. I must ask then, who in your life is going out of their way to make your life more full and complete just by going that extra mile and figuring out another something more about you? Who is making the extra effort to know you and make you feel special about your existence?

I’d love to hear your stories about people you barely know that treat you like someone special.

It’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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Things For Which I Am Thankful

February 2nd, 2016 No comments

1. I am thankful for the ability to walk relatively pain free.
2. Consequently, I am thankful for the ability to run relatively pain free.
3. I am thankful for the ability to write and share my thoughts.
4. I am thankful for having my own immediate family even though it is broken.
5. I am thankful for having a job that provides me with a source of income.
6. I am thankful for having family and friends with whom to share life and life experiences.
7. I am thankful for the opportunity to roam my environment with very few threats.
8. I am thankful for having a family pet that adds joy to life.
9. I am thankful for having a vehicle that gets me from Point A to Point B.
10. I am thankful for being surrounded by a medical community that has the ability to assess my health if something goes wrong or pops up unexpectedly.
11. I am thankful for music that adds variation to life.
12. I am thankful for the written word that has the ability to change my thinking and how I am feeling.
13. I am thankful for memories that have the ability to propel me forward and inspire creation.
14. I am thankful for food that nourishes me and gives me energy to face the day.
15. I am thankful for just about anything that makes my day my day.

How you ever thought about what you are thankful for? If you did, how would if change your life and how you perceive yourself in this world?

As always, it’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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When I Wake Up In The Morning

January 28th, 2016 No comments

Fragments of songs are circling in my head. Bit and pieces of lyrics swirling about.
My mind starts to sound out the formation of language but it’s all a jumbled mess.

It makes me wonder about investment bankers springing out of bed in the morning. Fresh newspaper in hand when they walk into the office in the morning. I don’t things are fragmented and jumbled up in their heads. In fact, first thing they wake up I believe the sentences in their heads are crisp and clear without a trace of doubt. Kind of like a perfect symphony playing in their heads. Every execution or executive decision makes sense and they are on task every second of the day.

It is only when I get in front of a computer screen and start typing does the language and things in general begin to make sense. I find clarity. But in the morning and most other times (when I’m at work driving or just walking somewhere) things really are a jumbled mess in my head. The wiring must be loose or some of the wiring up there is frayed. I don’t know. Something doesn’t seem right. So I have to find refuge in my writings to promote my own sanity and well-being.

If I can make sense of it on the page I can create my own type of sanctuary. A place where I feel safe and competent in what I am doing. When I get stuck up inside of my head for too long I begin to question myself in a negative way and slowly my confidence and feelings of efficacy erode. This is an unpleasant and troubling feeling so I contrive ways to thwart it (like the piece of writing I am doing now). It gives me a sense of mastery and reaffirms the notion that I know what I am doing and what I am saying makes perfect sense. On occasion I do fly off the handle though and some of my thoughts become loose and a bit incoherent. The way the sentences are shaped and how they flow together could be deemed shoddy or shabby at best.

But the fragments and pieces of song frustrate me. They irritate me. They drive me forward. Because I know it is time to wake up in the conscious world and get my brain going; get my brain moving in a coherent way. If I don’t everything just remains garbled and I have to somehow propel myself out of bed and go look at what is in the mirror.

How about you?
How do you feel when you wake up in the morning?
Can you relate to this garbled and jumbled feeling? Like somehow everything is scrambled up inside of your brain?

Sometimes I have to slam the pillow on the bed and quietly scream into it.

It’d be great to hear from you,

Matthew R. Polkinghorne

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