Dear T2 friends,

I hope this finds you well.

How is 2024 going with you?

Saying goodbye to my parents and the hot sunny swim-able Vietnam, I’m back to the freezing sunless depressing London. The sudden change in temperature has really affected everything. For instance, this morning it made it so hard to just have a normal morning walk - stepping out of the house with layer after layer of clothes, hands deep inside the pockets of the very thick M&S coat, I looked pretty much like a bear walking in the worm-like style.

To my surprise, the park was not empty at all. In fact, several people seemed to be even enjoying their walking/running, instead of just doing it for commitment … which really made me feel ashamed of my shivering.

I guess that’s one of the main benefits of going out there, as you might be surprised by how much others are pushing themselves and commit to what is good; that it’s more about the feeling of taking full control of one’s life, instead of succumbing to anything outside, no matter what it is.

Probably due to the shameful feeling of seeing them, and my body’s ability to adapt, that after the first round everything was better, and I could get back to my leisurely back-straightened walking style. With that, my mind also turned to reflect on things again. Well, isn’t that amazing, that just a couple of days ago, at exactly this hour, I still swam in the ocean in a hot tropical weather of Vietnam.

Now, swimming in the ocean is deeply refreshing: the waves, the tree line on the seashore, the mountain, and the sky. It brings one back to mother Nature, to feel how small one is in the middle of the ocean. However, the interesting thing is that one can easily realize how the whole ocean changes every second. And, to be able to stay afloat, one has to keep moving one’s hands and feet as well. No, not only the hands and feet, I guess it’s the whole body. That’s why swimming is so beneficial for one’s health.

It reminds me of Heraclitus’s very famous quote: “The only constant in life is change”, or how mother Nature loves changes. As Marcus Aurelius wrote in Meditations:

There is nothing nature loves more than to alter what exists and make new things like it. All that exists is the seed of what will emerge from it. You think the only seeds are the ones that make plants or children? Go deeper.
- Meditations, Marcus Aurelius

However, we human beings also hate changes. Our lives are shaped by our habits, and sometimes we go through the whole day without being aware of it. Everything is just too familiar - the route to office, the 9-to-5, the way home, and Netflix in the evening.

And therefore, I guess it’s still worth reminding ourselves, every day, both for our physical and mental health:

Hope you all have a "dynamic" 2024! :)