Wednesday, April 3, 2013


I slept well last night using the CPAP machine. But I was tired because I went to the gym and did not get the right sleep the previous night after coming back from our weekend trip. So I was exhausted when I went to bed but CPAP improved the quality of my rest. I think this device is a game changer for one’s quality of life, a technology that was available previously to the very rich. I feel more concentrated and focused during the day and more use of CPAP will improve my life in subtle ways that I would not notice. So that got me to thinking of further improving my functioning with vitamin supplements that help one’s cognitive function. I did dome research and settled on three possible candidates: Valerian, St. John’s wort and Gingko Biloba. Coupled with yoga, kettle ball, and golf and hiking would make the change complete.

I always try something new whenever I move to a new assignment or location. More like an instinctive act to prepare for stress brought about by change. For example, after moving to Singapore, I tried mind-mapping, Tai-Chi, golf and, eventually, Toastmaster and blogging. Along the way I dabbled in roller blading and guitar playing. I believe all these interests have improved my outlook and bandwidth. Now with my recent transfer, I think focusing on sleeping better via CPAP, getting more challenges in Toastmaster and work have upped the ante, driving up the quality of the game. Adding supplements to the plan will hopefully mitigate one’s biological constraints. The idea is to counter the inevitable onslaught of aging particularly cognitive decline, which one should control by multi-tasking less and keeping one’s mind focused at one important task at a time. Rushing to the weekend, with multiple reading and viewing of DVDs is not a good thing as well.

But I realize that a more fundamental change is needed involving one’s outlook. Otherwise age and one’s increasing work will force one to limit extra-curricular tasks like watching movies or reading at every free moment, instead of really relaxing. One has to be selective and reduce the amount of trivial movies or books to read. In the end, reducing mental stimuli will cause one to focus better. I am trying to read a book that attempts to make one more productive, written by a Harvard professor who has multiple careers. He has interesting tips useful to help achieve goals. I guess the idea is to undertake a combination of biological improvements (Tai-Chi, Yoga, CPAP and supplements), learn new tricks (smart phone / tablet tools, productivity techniques, focus) and a selective reduction of trivial tasks. Now that is a workable plan.

In retrospect, I think I have a ‘fight or flight’ response that drives my curiosity to read, watch and experience more. A fear that one will be less smart, less relevant and unable to compete at work; the fear that one will lose his advantage by being the smartest one in the room. But I do enjoy the varied experiences and input, not really driven by fear; but now one has to focus or lose relevance. Age and circumstances is bringing this youthful urge to a close. Perhaps one is getting worn-out and all one’s journey and travels (both physically and psychologically) is coming to an end. All the supplements and improvements will be put to good use if one is able to focus more. I realize that I could never be a writer in my youth like Capote, Mitchell or Harper Lee because I was too involved with experiencing life, self-absorbed, reading and watching movies; lacking focus and discipline.

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