I Decided – The Power of the Mind

Growth is about the conscious effort exerted by the need to survive.

What do you want to be when you grow up?

I think this question should be abolished by law. Yes, I still cannot answer this question.

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Whereas I can sympathize with the notion that the sooner one discovers their passion, the sooner they can strive towards it, in cases like mine, it is a societal burden instilled at a tender age.  So to commemorate my birthday and answer the burning questions in my mind, I decided to pick up my pen and start writing again.

As I continue in the path of self-discovery, I find myself at a crossroad yet again. Whilst in the past this would have been my breaking point, today, I consider such a crossroad as my breakthrough. Fascinating isn’t it? What gives? I’ve discovered that the human mind has an exponential capacity for growth, but what d we do with it? We limit ourselves within the confines of one box, one way of thinking and way one way of life. It is here that someone will then ask, ‘what do you propose can be done?’ The answer is simple. Each and every single person must DECIDE. A conscious decision is the answer.

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This epiphany has nothing to do with a life altering moment. As an individual I continue to struggle with my daily battles and demons, while every day I move closer to unlocking my purpose by challenging my values and beliefs. So I ask again, what gives? My attitude is the answer. I decided to develop my thought process. As opposed to heeding to my primal instincts, I have chosen to consciously experience each and every decision that I make. But what does this have to do with anything? As a result, I am no longer confined within the walls that make up my world, but rather I can sink into the sea of infinite possibilities and call forth my reality. This phenomenon is otherwise popularly known as the law of attraction.

Here’s an illustration:

Two people of the same age, gender, sex, race, religion and similar status quo apply for the same job. Fortunately, they both receive positive feedback and are called back for the interview. Going seemly well they are now awaiting the final verdict and ultimately each person draws a conclusion.

 Person One says: I gave it my all therefore I am reassured of the outcome.

 Person Two says: I gave it my all but in such situations there are many variables that can determine the final outcome.

Who do you think got the job?

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The law of attraction dictates that we attract whatever we focus on. It is believed that regardless of age, nationality or religious beliefs, we are all susceptible to the laws which govern the universe. In that sense, what we think, say or do inherently reflects the reality we experience. However, a common misconception with many is that Person One and Person Two, alternatively the optimist and the pessimist are two separate individuals. They are, in fact, one and the same person. The only difference is the conscious decision of which attitude one wants to adapt; a task that many people fail. We often witness that it is easier to feed one’s ego and desires as opposed to training the mind to think positively.

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I do not write and share my experience believing that I have mastered this philosophy but rather I want to show everyone that IMPOSSIBLE is a relative work. Personally, I’ve decided to see the words ‘I’M POSSIBLE’. If I believe it, visualize it, focus and persist, I will inherently attract my envisioned reality. Most importantly, I believe that you too are capable of the same.

The World is Mine Oyster

No one in life is lost, just touring before arriving at their final destination.

“I’m anxious…”

Sonia would say. “Why?” Even she does not know although she is certain that there is something missing. I have the same feeling. It’s an emptiness, a feeling of incompleteness, but what specifically it is, I am yet to discern.  Truth be told, it is bothersome. I can feel it deep in my heart. It grows deeper with passing days. Is it because I am idle? Unlikely. This feeling cannot be eclipsed by temporary activities.

At such times, it’s common to seek relief. Though many ascribe to various different causes, the reality is that psychological illness is a disease of the mind and is curable with the proper medication. Some turn to comfort food hoping to feel better and others to drugs to escape a reality that they feel is too much to bear. These “solutions” are only a temporary fix. We are lost inside a maze filled with possibilities that we presently haven’t found the right path to truly becoming whole.

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Globally, an estimated 350 million people of all ages suffer from depression. It’s considered the most common mental disorder. Leave aside the usual down with the blues, feeling under the weather or being in a funk. The difference between a normal person and a depressed person is that, a normal person is capable “jump starting” themselves out of this situation unlike a depressed person. It affects millions of people physically, mentally and emotionally yet 80% of individuals affected do not receive treatment.

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Nonetheless, being lost does not imply a lack of emotional attachment. Rather one could have a loving and supportive family as well as close knit friendships and relationships, yet there’s a void to be filled. It’s an indication of self discovery. Once you have started to question yourself, you are already on the right path to enlightenment. The only problem is we do not know how long the journey of discovery will be. J.K. Rowling is a good example of this journey. Until the age of 30 she was a struggling single mother but today she is one of the most recognized and wealthiest writers in the world.

In order to have the mountain top experience, we have to pass through valleys and trenches. What does this mean? For one to appreciate the happiness in life, you must first experience suffering. Therefore, I encourage everyone to understand that the void, the loss and the hardship are the fruits of our joy and success. Therefore, we must hold on tight.

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I am a firm believer in life’s purpose and destiny. As Lao-Tzu, the famous philosopher says “the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” It may not be clear from the beginning, but everyone ends up where they are intended. In the meantime, Shakespeare advices that “laughing faces do not mean there is absence of sorrow… but, it means that they have the ability to deal with it.” The breakthrough will take patience hence tackle life with a smile. You don’t know who that smile will touch and how they will play an influential role in your life. The world has lots to offer so I will persevere because a close friend once told me ‘hard work beats talent any day’. Your attitude should be, “the world is mine oyster”.

For Granted

When life is in perfect tune, don’t forget to turn your eyes to those who need it.

I have an Iphone, a decent car and a family with both loving parents. Note I keenly insist on the ‘both’ as in duos, they are alive and well and for that I’m thankful. I believe that I am a glass half-full kind of person but then I tend to hold my fair share and probably some else’s share of complaints (a less fortunate person at that).

‘That’s not right!’, ‘I want it, but can’t afford it’, ‘All these cool kids are so pretentious’ (Just cause I’m not one)

In such a situation, I only see things in one perspective, mine. As long as it’s not going my way, it’s wrong. Life is a perfect mix of yin and yang. Alternatively, you get what you give. By closing myself to only one outlook on life, I have ignored many that require my attention. What’s in it for me? For as long as my perfect bubble is intact, all is well.  So to myself (and anyone who wants to listen) I say this, no matter how you feel, get up, dress up and never give up.

Even so, don’t close and size me up in a category just yet. The human nature is egoistic and selfish. It’s all about survival. However, our need to survive has been tampered by globalization’s need for consumption. Clearly I too have been affected by this ideology. It ‘s no longer simply about survival but rather it is survival with comfort. I had an Iphone 5 but as soon as the Iphone 6 was out I wanted it too. Just like everyone, I felt like queuing the shop on release date, but I couldn’t afford it and my parents were not going to indulge me. After extensive months of saving, I finally got it. Although I don’t regret the decision, looking back at all I did just to get latest version of the same phone I already had, I can only laugh about it now; its in the past. Yet I can justify that the experience did leave me with a lesson or two.

Let’s make it worse. As I was complaining the other day, I mention to my confidant that I hate having to hustle trying to convince parents to see things your way when they don’t have a united front. For several minutes I went on, with no feedback until she finally speaks in a monotone and says “at least you have parents to complain about”. At this point, I ventured into new territory. It was a glimpse of someone else’s life, a glass half-empty perspective. I just felt foolish.

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We don’t realize things until they are painted to us in black and white. While at that precise moment my thoughts were ‘she’s such a downer’ ultimately what she said remained creeping at the back of my mind. In this consumption based world, we take many things for granted. We have gotten used and comfortable with material possession and the need for more and this has made us selfish. Our attitudes towards life need an adjustment. The middle class is most notable of this behavior. Children these days no longer feel the joy and emphasis of age limit. For instance, personally my parents would get as a laptop at the age of 15. These days, its child abuse if they don’t have a smart phone in fifth grade. What do you think they’ll demand at 15?

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In the spirit of Christmas, the yin is to share a meal with friends and family. On the other hand, the yang includes all the unfortunate people who have less than their basic needs. So this holiday, I ask everyone to change perspective. Let’s make it a habit never to take anything for granted, not the family, friends and the things we own. For a minute consider this, the 5 pairs of sneakers you consider lacking, in another perspectives, those 5 pairs of sneakers could mean the world to 5 different people. Having a variety of things is not a crime, we simply have to remember to appreciate what we have become not everyone is in the same situation.  On that note, even Kim Kardashian has gotten into the spirit this holiday and is giving away 1000 shoes for charity. The act of seeing someone in need and lending a hand, it’s the greatest gift to the receiver.