The Blackburn Memoirs Noctis Blackburn February 9, 2020
With the above image in mind, which mindset do you employ?
I have always been fascinated by the mindset each individual employs, as we all tend to decide the lives that we live based on those views. Mindset is paramount, as growth and change are born out of it. And growth is born out of our continual stoking of the fires that feed our soul.
For me, writing is one of the main things that helps feed my soul. Exploring and learning about life also does the same, too. And all of that has helped me grow faster and in more directions than I ever though I would. I wouldn’t be here now doing this if that wasn’t the case.
Whatever happens, make sure you start, or keep doing what feeds your soul continually, no matter what it is. By continually feeding your soul with that which you genuinely Love to do the most, you’ll get an endless well of energy that’ll continually keep you ignited to do whatever it is you wish to do for yourself. That’s how you begin creating those avalanches of growth that make every day like a new canvas so you can continually use to create the life of your dreams.
“I like the dreams of the future better than the history of the past.” – Thomas Jefferson
“Comfort kills ambition. Get uncomfortable and get used to it in your pursuit of your goals and dreams.” – Robert Kiyosaki
“Do not worry if you have built your castles in the air. They are where they should be. Now put the foundations under them.” – Henry David Thoreau
The Blackburn Memoirs February 2, 2020
Earlier today a question occurred to me that I’ve asked a few people, but not as many people as I probably should. The question is: are you doing what you Love doing in life, what you truly enjoy doing, whether for a living, or as a hobby?
It seems like simple question, doesn’t it? And it is simple, in that the answer can only be yes or no. You either are doing what you Love doing in life, or you are not. On the other hand, the answer to the question could be complicated in that many people have dreams and want to do more with life, but don’t pursue those dreams for myriad reasons.
Irrespective of that however, I ask the question because life waits for no one. I’m thankful that I began pushing towards my dreams really early in life, and I kept jumping into the deep end of the ocean of the unknown willing to fail countless times in pursuit of my dreams. Thankfully, although I have failed in many things in life, the first big dream that I pursued and had success with was playing online poker for a living, which I loved doing and taught me a lot about life, people, dreams, focus, mindfulness, mindset, and much more. But when it was time to move on from that, the next dream I had was launching multiple businesses. Pursing those dreams was not easy, particularly poker, but had I not sought what I Love doing then I wouldn’t be here right now doing what I Love doing, and that is writing.
This concept is important because doing what you Love invigorates your soul. You’re always energized, you’re always in a good mood, you’re always getting things done, it it’s all seamless, you just do it. I find that when I am not doing what I Love doing, that’s when I begin to get stuck, that’s when my inspiration just nosedives considerably and I end up feeling like I’m wading through a mire.
These are some of the thoughts that have led me to be more mindful of my time on social media, and shifting that time to doing things I Love doing, except doing them far more often. And the main things I Love doing are reading, writing poetry and blogs, and doing research. I can spend day after day endlessly doing all of that, and I’m right at home, doing what I Love.
While I have not stopped writing at all, what I had stopped doing was reading and research, which I really thoroughly enjoy for many reasons, not the least of which is because it gives me a greater understanding how the world really operates.
In any case, the point is to ask you the reader whether or not you are doing what you are doing. Whether it revolves writing, or any other dreams, it doesn’t matter. It’s a very serious question, and I ask because most of the time we go through life day after day, month after month, year after year, and we end up living the same day, the same week, the same month, the same year, over and over again, as if we don’t have a choice. But all individuals DO have a choice. Just because it’s not easy doesn’t mean it’s not possible.
You can choose to take proactive steps towards your dreams, or not. For instance, some of my goals for this year are publishing a few more books, more than last year, while also pushing myself to review books again like I was doing in the past, while continuing to write poetry as well, while not neglecting the blog.
Some of those goals are easier than others, but the main commonality all of these goals have, and all dreams have is that if you look at them from the right perspective, all they require are baby steps. At times, it can be a lot of baby steps, but ultimately, no dream is ever accomplished without consistent steps, and last year taught me that if I can keep myself mindful about how I employ my time, I will not only achieve my goals but I will do what I Love doing. But I have to be mindful about it. There is no if and or buts of about that.
Thankfully, the option to do what each of us Loves doing is always there. Pursuit of dreams and goals might not be easy, but it’s always worth it.
Now, before you leave, I ask you all one last time: are you doing what you Love doing? Why or why not? What’s stopping you?
Only you can answer those questions, but I hope that whatever each of you is doing in life, one way or another you’re taking proactive steps towards your dreams.
You all take care and have an outstanding evening.
These are just general considerations that if you are going to wait until the “new year” to start pursuing some goals, to make sure to be as prepared as possible, since many people that wait until such time to make large changes, also become the same people that end up falling of the wagon of focus not too long after. Irrespective of that, the part about “free styling” meant writing without one specific idea in mind, and off the type of your head, rather than working on a specific blog, idea, or book for instance. Lastly, I do believe that not waiting for tomorrow, and seeking to make the best of yourself today, in the now, is the most important thing you can do for yourself because it is a proactive approach, and you seeking to create positive resonant change in the moment, rather than waiting for change (the new year i.e.) to come to you, as is most often the case.
As far as writing is concerned, I have stayed focused on that for the most part. Even so, I find myself failing with the blog because even though I have been writing regularly, I have not been uploading content. Some of this is due to lack of mindfulness, but I have been making poor choices as far as the Blog is concerned, given that it doesn’t take too much time to upload content that’s already been created. Either way, I’m disappointed in myself, and plan on changing that immediately.
Writing has been ongoing, and I’m actually writing in myriad directions, and its rather fulfilling for the most part. I have managed to remain inspired and focused, while also trying some new things in some areas, but overall, making sure that I have written has gone off without a hitch.
Now, I made two decisions for myself within the last few days that have lead me to this very point. These days, unlike the past, I am not reticent about doing what is best for me, which is why I’m writing this blog in the first place.
The first decision dealt with me trying to clear up something for myself, by being direct with myself about a certain matter, and that didn’t go so well. The whole point is that, in the end, although I continually try to do what’s best for me, it doesn’t always work out. But at least I know that regardless of what happens tomorrow, I tried, and that’s all that matters.
Immediately thereafter, I decided to make the second decision given that it was glaringly obvious that what was best for me was not to be on Instagram at the time. And I shut down all my main IG accounts except one, and I even plan on steering away from that one unless I have a significant reason not to.
Irrespective of that, the whole point is that my choices have been incredibly Love based – doing what’s best for me because I care for myself – rather than when I haven’t done what’s best for myself, like overlooking my health, which is a glaring mistake. On the other side of the spectrum, at times I don’t end up doing what’s ‘best’ for me due to fear-based considerations.
What’s the difference? In the former, I am chasing you dreams, because that’s what’s arguably best for me. The latter, would be me staying in my comfort zone, even though some would argue that that’s what’s best for them. And I hold no judgment as to who makes what choice for themselves, as I’m a huge proponent of Freedom, particularly Freedom of choice.
Every single one of us has a choice to make every single day. In fact, we have hundreds if not thousands of choices we make daily, except, most of them come automatic through the day. But still, we make choices, and it’s in the most important choices that we each make in our lives that we see the most massive shifts. And given that I plan continuing to torpedo right through my fears, I can only do what’s best for me because not doing what’s for me would not only selling myself short, but not living my life to the fullest.
One thing’s certain, at the end of my life, I don’t want to have any major regrets, which is another reason why I don’t shy away from trying to do what’s best for me, because in the past I would not try something and know how disappointed I felt in myself if I didn’t try something, like applying for a certain job for instance.
Some of you may be asking, or have asked, “Well if writing is so important to you, why don’t you stay on Instagram at a much more limited time?” That’s an excellent question, and one a few people have raised on Facebook given they couldn’t contact me through IG. The reason for that, as I have covered in past videos, is that I’ve gotten into the bad habit (again) of spending a large amount of time, much more than I should be, on Instagram in this instance, but in the past it was on Social Media in general. And while that might work for other people, as I have quite a few friends, some of them best friends, that are literally on Instagram all day long, that just won’t work for me.
That doesn’t mean I won’t use the platform again, it’s just that given how busy I am this time of year in the businesses, and given how much I want to continue writing, I can’t afford to be wasting one or two dozen hours on social media that aren’t going to anything productive or improving my life. You might be asking, so what exactly do I deem productive? Some of this is writing, interacting with people, supporting others, getting to know people in depth, etc. But a lot of the time I spent was following trails of Memes, or spending lots of time looking at travel locations, or any type of pictures that could serve as a prompt or inspiration with writing for me.
Regardless, I have to draw the line somewhere. I can’t afford to be losing huge slots of time by doing that. And I don’t regret any of the meaningful things I was doing on IG, like getting to know people, or supporting their work, sharing poems, etc. That I could never regret, particularly getting to know people, because unlike the other things, you don’t always have an opportunity to interact with someone one on one, so when that happens I cherish it incredibly because (1) it doesn’t happen often enough I believe, and (2) it might not happen soon or ever again, which is why I always try and remain in the moment when I’m trying to talk to people, find out what they enjoy, and all that jazz.
The whole point is that, I got into the exact bad habit that made me waste over 1000 hours of my life on social media this year, and if I really hope to do what’s best for myself, there is just no way on Earth I could ever do what’s best for me while having Social Media, or specifically in my case, Instagram, siphon so much time from me, particularly at a time of year when time is so precious and at a premium.
With all that in mind, I shall continue to do what’s best for me, and hopefully I can continue to achieve everything I can achieve as an individual, while always remaining open to the fluidity of life and the possibilities that may arise. And although I certainly didn’t plan on detaching myself this much from social media, I know myself and I know if I didn’t do it my health would pay the price with increased stress and so on, as has happened in the past.
Do I plan on using IG again? Sure. But for now, using it like I was using it before just won’t work. I do want to use it in a limited way to post poetry, but time (and my health) will tell.
I hope you are all doing fantastic, and always remember, dreams don’t happen over tonight. You have to be proactive in the steps you take towards them. But eventually, with enough focus, poise and drive, if you want it bad enough, I do believe it can and will happen more often than not. But you can never give up on yourself, or even the dreams of other, no matter what.
“The Journey of a thousand miles begins with a
– Lao Tzu
“Believe in your dreams. They were given
to you for a reason.”
– Katrina Mayer
“Too many of us are not living our dreams because we are living our fears.”
– Les Brown
It has been a while since I have done a blog update, and the reason for that is because I needed to set myself up for some future projects, get organized for writing, as well as work. As such, I wasn’t going to have too much additional time to do all that, while still actively writing for the blog. Even so, I don’t see myself taking no extensive break any time soon, which is good because I’m ready to begin sharing a lot of different things.
There is another crucial component why I kept myself away from most social media, and it’s because once I get sucked into “The Vortex”, I get stuck in there and begin draining countless hours, many of which are not doing anything productive. And being someone that values time to a great extent, it hits me hard that I could allow myself to let lack of mindfulness siphon so much time away. Because of all that, I had to detach to a considerable extent and do what’s best for me to make sure I was in an optimal place for the future.
Now, I wanted to give a quick update on my latest project, my book Amor Vincit Omnia – Love Conquers All, which is written under my Zy Marquiez pen name. I just ordered what I am hopping is my ‘last’ proof copy, and if there are no formatting errors then the books a go. Thankfully, none of the previous proof copies had any, but I did delay the release because the book grew to a considerable extent, much more so than I thought it would. That said, I’m excited to have that done and out the door so I can move on to other things.
Speaking of other things, I wanted to speak at brevity about the Logo. As mentioned in a previous post, the reason I designed the Logo that I did was because I wanted to create something for myself. If someone else likes it, great, but that wasn’t the reason I chose to make it. Not unlike when I write, I write and create as an expression of myself, first and foremost for me. The Logo follows the same mindset.
I was seeking to create something that not only resonates deeply with me, but also follows some of tenets I value, such as a no–nonsense very straight forward approach, simple and yet complex simultaneously, something that operates on multiple tiers, not unlike how life does physically and metaphysically, and something that included initials for both of my pen names. All four letters of each of my pen names are integrated into it, with three Zs (two seen primarily as Ns and one small one), one large M, four Ns, and two Bs.
the same lines, I have filed for trademarks for both the Noctis Blackburn pen
name, and the Logo I designed. Given
that intellectual property theft is a an issue, I thought it prudent to do
that. Moreover, given that slander is
also something to be seriously concerned about with the way social media
operates and in general as well, I was urged by my attorney to follow that
gears, the Blackburn Memoirs Facebook page is now being run (and has been run)
by one of my best friends from college that I’ve known for exactly 20 years, that
goes by Pandora. I met her at ASU and once
I ran the idea by her she was thrilled to do so. That said, I did start another FB page under
my Z.M. pen name, which was unplanned, but a few people thought it a good idea
given that the content from each of the pen names, although similar in nature,
is going to start to diverge in significantly different directions with
time. I will handle that page myself for
a few weeks tops as I get it off the ground, and will either let Pandora take
over if she wants, or someone else perhaps.
Still uncertain of that however.
I will be uploading videos regularly on things that directly or indirectly couple with writing, at times taking an outside of the box approach to explore a kaleidoscope of concepts in hopefully intriguing ways, at times coupling it to poker given how many commonalities writing and poker have, which I find very intriguing.
that, there’s one final announcement that I’m thrilled to tell you all about. Months ago I thought about an idea that I’ve
slowly been getting off the ground, and it’s actually quite fun and different,
definitely nothing I’ve ever done before.
I’m working on a book along the lines of a masquerade, so for now, let’s call
it “The Masquerade,” although the actual title was already chosen months
ago. Thank you for those handful of you
that have known and kept my trust. Now,
I wanted to work on this book a lot more the last 2 months, but given how
complex Amor Vincit Omnia turned out to be, I just decided to put The
Masquerade on hold.
Just like A.V.O., this book kind of took a life of its own. At first, I wanted to make it based around a
Love story, and that’s certainly one component
of it, but the book’s grown much larger in scope than that. I’m really chomping at the bit to tell you
all more, but I just can’t. It’s not the
time. That said, I am super excited for
it, although there is no tentative release date at the moment since it still
needs lots of work.
Why a masquerade? Because I’ve always loved the idea of a masquerade. There is something about it that is not only
intriguing, but very mysterious. It’s
like a blank canvas within the nascent stages of the evening, something that
holds endless possibilities for a night to truly remember. I have never had the pleasure to attend one,
but one day in the future I will. I
really do think it would be amazing experience subjectively speaking, and
something that when the time is right, I will definitely knock off my bucket
That is also why I have often used a mask not unlike the one seen in the
Phantom Of The Opera. Not only that, but
when I was younger, my Mom had nigh two dozen Venetian–style carnival masks on
the wall, which were a constant reminder of the idea of a masquerade. This idea has resonated with me since I was a
young teenager, and although I never planned on writing a book on a masquerade
ever, now that I’m here, I’m going to go with it wherever it may lead and let
the chips fall where they may.
I really hope you all are doing amazing, and I’m glad that I’m going to be posting regularly again since I have missed doing so, interacting with you all and learning from you as well. It has definitely been a minute. You all take care of yourselves and I appreciate you taking the time to read. Make sure to have a wonderful day and keep on keeping on.