Day: April 2, 2020

Why You Need a Mindful Journaling Practice

Each person should find time to have a break and think about what is bothering them. Mindful journaling will help to figure out what is in your heart.

Our hectic lifestyles lead to stress, depression, and other similar problems. Nearly all people have this feeling when everything seems to be fine, but something is wrong. You can be successful, you can have a great life and no complaints, but some event or even conversation might leave a trace in life. Mindful journaling is a practice that is targeted at finding out what is wrong.

When you can’t get over something bad or negative, mindful journaling is supposed to help in soothing your mind. You need to find time for yourself, to focus on what is bothering you, and to figure out why you are experiencing certain feelings. Such a practice will help to categorize your feelings, to understand yourself better.

All you need to do is to spend some time alone. You don’t have to meditate and close your eyes, just think about the feelings you are experiencing, write them down, and let it go. For example, if you had an argument with someone and you can’t get over it, just process your thoughts in your mind. Think of reasons why you can’t forget this conversation, why did it affect you that much, and write down these thoughts.

By doing so, you will see clearly what is wrong. When you understand why a situation had such an impact on you, eventually, you can get over it. Mindful journalism helps to restore the peace of your mind, it gives a boost to your mental health, and you feel a lot better afterward.

How To Start Your Mindful Journaling

You can create your own scheme of how to begin your mindful journaling, but to make it easier, you can read the tips below. Just remember, your thoughts in written form are going to help you to understand yourself better.

Use Paper

We live in an era where everything is computerized. Probably, the first thought that came into your mind is to put your thoughts into a computer or tablet. But it’s better to use simple paper or even a special notebook only for your thoughts. Don’t confuse it with a diary, it is different since you note your thoughts and reasons why you are experiencing certain feelings.

When you are putting your thoughts on paper, it takes a bit longer, but that’s exactly what you need. While writing down your thoughts, you are processing them at this moment. This writing process gives you time to understand you even better. Written thoughts give you the feeling that you are in the present moment, it gives you ground. And one more thing, if you choose a notebook that you like, you will be more eager to take your journal again and open up.

Think Deeply

If you understand that a situation, event, or even someone else’s phrase has caused an impact on you, try to look at a situation from a different perspective. If you can’t get over something, for instance, if you are in conflict with someone, try to look at this situation as if you are an observer, not a participant of that conflict.

We all need advice at certain points in our lives. But who would be the best advisor in any situation if not you yourself? Try to think about a situation as if it happened not with you, but with your friend. What advice would you give?

When thinking from a different perspective, we see other details. We can’t change what has happened, or what was said at some point. It might be nagging us and that’s why we can’t get over it. But concentrating on the same details won’t help us heal from a situation. So look at it from a different perspective and eventually, you will get over it.

Date

You might want to write the date when you have expressed your thoughts on paper. It works especially well when you are trying to get over something. Writing a date might help you to leave a situation in the past and to start living in the present day. We all do the same mistake — let our regrets affect the present.

What happened in the past is already in the past. Writing the date of when you have written your thoughts will help you to start a new day without regrets. It helps you to live in the present and your negative experience won’t affect how you perceive the present. That’s how you can keep your mind sound.

Censorship Is Not Allowed

how to mindful journaling

You don’t have to be afraid of misunderstandings, you are exposing your thoughts in front of yourself. When we are talking to our loved ones, we sometimes filter what we say since we might be afraid of being misunderstood. We are carefully choosing words and phrases so the listener would definitely understand us right.

But you don’t have to hide some thoughts or feelings if you are putting your thoughts on paper. Your journal is a safe place where you can be yourself. No one will read it, it’s only yours. And you have to be completely honest with yourself, to write down your thoughts in those exact words that describe your feelings, since that’s the only way you can understand why you are experiencing these feelings and let them go.

Add A Touch Of Happiness

Do not focus only on negative things in your life. Think about what can help you in a particular situation. For example, you feel that you are not completely satisfied and you miss out on something. What could you do in this situation so you will feel better? If you are feeling lonely, you can figure out where you can meet new people. Or you can decide to call your friend, etc.

Or if everything is going well, try not to focus on small negative details by writing them down. If overall you are feeling great, encourage yourself. Think about how happy you are and write down a thought that you are doing great and should keep up the good work. Take some time and write down what makes you happy. After you put your words down, you will notice a long-lasting positive effect. Happy thoughts always have the best flavors.

See Also: Simple Yet Effective Habits For A Better, Happier Life

Start By Doing Small Steps

It’s like learning how to walk or to ride a bicycle. Start with small steps. If you don’t know where to start, just take your journal and write down some thoughts that had occurred in your mind. You don’t have to write down a detailed analysis of what you feel and why you experience these feelings. If you don’t know how to do it, write simple sentences. Eventually, you will gain experience and will figure out the best way to explore your own mind.

One of the best ways to systematize what you are feeling and experiencing is by writing down lists or bullets. For example, write down a small note reflecting your feelings, and then write down everything that comes into your mind as a list. You will understand what you mean, and everything that made no sense will finally become meaningful. That way you can solve the issue, you will understand why you are feeling in a certain way.

See Also: 5 Benefits of Journaling To Inspire and Motivate You

Keep Up The Good Work

mindful journaling tips

Considering the tips mentioned above, and your own thoughts about how to mindfully journal your thoughts, start a habit of taking your journal and writing down your thoughts. It doesn’t mean that you have to do it every day, but don’t forget to have a break sometimes and to take your journal. If you feel happy, write down what makes you happy. Process this feeling, let it go through you and you will notice that this positive effect is long-lasting.

If you feel that you are losing control over a situation or life overall, take a break, write down your thoughts. Reread them, figure out why are you experiencing these negative emotions, and figure out a way that can make you feel better.

Your journal is a safe place where you can express yourself without being judged. It will help you to understand how to make you feel happier. When you take your time and write down what makes you feel sad, you can get over this situation. That’s how you can gain full control over your life and be happy.

The post Why You Need a Mindful Journaling Practice appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Rick and Morty are back in town in new season 4 trailer

Rick and Morty are back in town in new season 4 trailer

There’s still a month to go before Rick and Morty returns on May 3 for the second half of its fourth season. It feels more like a lifetime away right now, especially considering how long March was. Fortunately, Adult Swim has dropped a new video to help us with the wait.

In a rollicking trailer set to Thin Lizzy’s ‘The Boys Are Back In Town,’ Rick continues to drag Morty through dangerous interdimensional hijinks in the fourth season’s final five episodes. This time, said exploits involve vats of acid, tentacled monsters, S.W.A.T., and running naked and screaming. The duo also get an “unnecessarily badass suit-up” though, so it isn’t all terrible. Read more…

More about Trailers, Cartoons, Rick And Morty, Adult Swim, and Entertainment

‘A perfect storm for first time managers,’ say VCs with their own shops

Until very recently, it had begun to seem like anyone with a thick enough checkbook and some key contacts in the startup world could not only fund companies as an angel investor but even put himself or herself in business as a fund manager.

It helped that the world of venture fundamentally changed and opened up as information about its inner workings flowed more freely. It didn’t hurt, either, that many billions of dollars poured into Silicon Valley from outfits and individuals around the globe who sought out stakes in fast-growing, privately held companies — and who needed help in securing those positions.

Of course, it’s never really been as easy or straightforward as it looks from the outside. While the last decade has seen many new fund managers pick up traction, much of the capital flooding into the industry has accrued to a small number of more established players that have grown exponentially in terms of assets under management. In fact, talk with anyone who has raised a first-time fund and you’re likely to hear that the fundraising process is neither glamorous nor lucrative and that it’s paved with very short phone conversations. And that’s in a bull market.

What happens in what’s suddenly among the worst economic environments the world has seen? First and foremost, managers who’ve struck out on their own suggest putting any plans on the back burner. “I would love to be positive, and I’m an optimist, but I would have to say that now is probably one of the toughest times” to get a fund off the ground, says Aydin Senkut, who founded the firm Felicis Ventures in 2006 and just closed its seventh fund.

“It’s a perfect storm for first-time managers,” adds Charles Hudson, who launched his own venture shop, Precursor Ventures, in 2015.

Hitting pause doesn’t mean giving up, suggests Eva Ho, cofounder of the three-year-old, seed-stage L.A.-based outfit Fika Ventures, which last year closed its second fund with $76 million. She says not to get “too dismayed” by the challenges.

Still, it’s good to understand what a first-time manager is up against right now, and what can be learned more broadly about how to proceed when the time is right.

Know it’s hard, even in the best times

As a starting point, it’s good to recognize that it’s far harder to assemble a first fund than anyone who hasn’t done it might imagine.

Hudson knew he wanted to leave his last job as a general partner with SoftTech VC when the firm — since renamed Uncork Capital — amassed enough capital that it no longer made sense for it to issue very small checks to nascent startups. “I remember feeling like, Gosh, I’ve reached a point where the business model for our fund is getting in the way of me investing in the kind of companies that naturally speak to me,” which is largely pre-product startups.

Hudson suggests he miscalculated when it came to approaching investors with his initial idea to create a single GP fund that largely backs ideas that are too early for other VCs. “We had a pretty big LP based [at SoftTech] but what I didn’t realize is the LP base that’s interested in someone who is on fund three or four is very different than the LP base that’s interested in backing a brand new manager.”

Hudson says he spent a “bunch of time talking to fund of funds, university endowments — people who were just not right for me until someone pulled me aside and just said, ‘Hey, you’re talking to the wrong people. You need to find some family offices. You need to find some friends of Charles. You need to find people who are going to back you because they think this is a good idea and who aren’t quite so orthodox in terms of what they want to see in terms partner composition and all that.’”

Collectively, it took “300 to 400 LP conversations” and two years to close his first fund with $15 million. (It’s now raising its third pre-seed fund).

Ho says it took less time for Fika to close its first fund but that she and her partners talked with 600 people in order to close their $41 million debut effort, adding that she felt like a “used car salesman” by the end of the process.

Part of the challenge was her network, she says. “I wasn’t connected to a lot of high-net-worth individuals or endowments or foundations. That was a whole network that was new to me, and they didn’t know who the heck I was, so there’s a lot of proving to do.” A proof-of-concept fund instilled confidence in some of these investors, though Ho notes you have to be able to live off its economics, which can be miserly.

She also says that as someone who’d worked at Google and helped found the location data company Factual, she underestimated the work involved in running a small fund. “I thought, ‘Well, I’ve started these companies and run these big teams. How how different could it be?” But “learning the motions and learning what it’s really like to run the funds and to administer a fund and all responsibilities and liabilities that come with it . . . it made me really stop and think, ‘Do I want to do this for 20 to 30 years, and if so, what’s the team I want to do it with?’”

Investors will offer you funky deals; avoid these if you can

First-time managers often look to close on a big anchor investor as a positive indicator to other backers, and some LPs will take advantage of their real or perceived desperation to lock something down. Yet seizing certain opportunities can actually send the wrong signal, depending on the scenario.

In Hudson’s case, an LP offered him two options: either a typical LP agreement wherein the outfit would write a small check, or an option wherein it would make a “significant investment that would have been 40% of our first fund,” says Hudson.

Unsurprisingly, the latter offer came with a lot of strings. Namely, the LP said it wanted to have a “deeper relationship” with Hudson, which he took to mean it wanted a share of Precursor’s profits beyond what it would receive as a typical investor in the fund.

“It was very hard to say no to that deal, because I didn’t get close to raising the amount of money that I would have gotten if I’d said yes for another year,” says Hudson. He still thinks it was the right move, however. “I was just like, how do I have a conversation with any other LP about this in the future if I’ve already made the decision to give this away?”

Fika similarly received an offer that would have made up 25 percent of the outfit’s debut fund, but the investor wanted a piece of the management company. It was “really hard to turn down because we had nothing else,” recalls Ho. But she says that other funds Fika was talking with made the decision simpler. “They were like, ‘If you sign on to those terms, we’re out.” The team decided that taking a shortcut that could damage them longer term wasn’t worth it.

Your LPs have questions, but you should question LPs, too

More so than most first-time managers, Senkut started off with certain financial advantages, having been the first product manager at Google and enjoying the fruits of its IPO before leaving the outfit in 2005 along with many other Googleaires, as they were dubbed at the time.

It allowed him to start putting money to work immediately. Still, as he tells it, it was “not a friendly time a decade ago” to raise outside capital, with most solo general partners spinning out of other venture funds —  not search engines. As an outsider, to crack into the venture industry, he largely tried to shadow angel investor Ron Conway, working checks into some of the same deals that Conway was backing.

“If you want to get into the movie industry, you need to be in hit movies,” says Senkut. “If you want to get into the investing industry, you need to be in hits. And the best way to get into hits is to say, ‘Okay. Who has an extraordinary number of hits, who’s likely getting the best deal flow,’ because the more successful you are, the better companies you’re going to see, the better the companies that find you.”

Senkut has developed an enviable track record over time, including stakes in Credit Karma, which was just gobbled up by Intuit, and Plaid, sold in January to Visa. Those kinds of exits may give him more confidence than managers earlier in their careers might muster. Still, Senkut also says it’s very important for anyone raising a fund to not just answer LPs’ questions but to also ask the right questions of them.

He says, for example, that with Felicis’s newest fund, the team asked many managers outright about how many assets they have under management, how much of those assets are dedicated to venture and private equity, and how much of their allotment to each was already taken.

Felicis did this so it doesn’t find itself in a position of making a capital call that an investor can’t meet, especially given that in recent years, many institutional investors have been writing out checks to VCs at a faster pace than ever been before and have, in many cases, too much of their capital in the venture industry at this point.

In fact, Felicis added new managers who “had room” while cutting back some existing LPs “that we respected . .. because if you ask the right questions, it becomes clear whether they’re already 20% over-allocated [to the asset class] and there’s no possible way [they are] even going to be able to invest if they want to.”

It’s smart thinking and, when the market eventually eases up again, and new funds can again capture the attention of investors, certainly something to keep in mind.