Soon after we were born and our perceiving consciousness began to form, we saw the world in purity - without any preconception or expectations whatsoever. We could read the depths of emotional information in the subtleties of unconscious body gestures, vocal tones, facial expressions - the set of information we all possess to express ourselves. This is universal human language that is innate to all of us and goes beyond words.
And then we picked up the framework of a written/verbal language to simplify our world. And lost that ability to perceive, through the depths of the unknown.
But it’s in the depths of the unknown, not just in which we can merely describe, that embody the beauties of our world.
Many of us have been taught, and also probably subscribe to, this obsessive “future-orientation” mindset. As an oversimplified way of thinking: either someone is future-oriented and through “self-respect” they plan their future, or they have no direction in life. Either or.
It makes sense maybe when trying to get a teenager to finally think about their future - but that oversimplification isn’t quite the only way of understanding the relationship between your efforts and the future you harvest. In fact its oversimplification is dangerous - future obsession can cut off your essential arteries that allow you to exist and really live life. Not saying we shouldn’t think about our future, but rather that future-orientation is much deeper than we’re taught to perceive it.
The point is, I’ve gone through the obsessive “let’s plan for the future” as a result of my pre-graduation anxiety. And while it seems great because it means I am thinking about my future - over-thinking and obsessiveness over something we can’t 100% control is physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually tolling.
What I’ve leaned is that there is a great difference between planning for your future and living within your mind, versus living in the present moment in a meaningful way so your future can exist. The first puts you into theoretical head-space, where you’re so caught up in this tunnel vision of a future that you lose sight at the meaningful experiences that exist in the present. An example would be those who obsessively want to be rich - its that obsession that ironically is holding you back from doing so. If you’re so caught up in the future, you miss present opportunities to actually let your future happen.
Once I experienced calming down, and getting out of my head-space when it comes to planning my future, I allowed the world to emerge and harmoniously all fit together. I know what I need to do with my life, and I can live it every day. It’s such a meaningful way to live in comparison to this obsession with planning the future.
Just exist meaningfully. That’s the only way a meaningful future can happen.
Even though I recently graduated in December, I’m still not leaving the student lifestyle anytime soon. The difference of course is making money through freelance work until I get something more regular.
But still, the frugality of my lifestyle has really made me appreciate gifts and gestures from others. I was ready to pay for my own meal when I was intercepted by my room mate’s mum. Then pampered with a fancy breakfast the next morning as well (mm, smoked salmon…).
I’m really thankful, and it makes me feel really good deep down. I suppose I’m old enough now to realize what a nice gesture providing food is to those younger than myself. I always dismissed it as being traditional and doing it out of obligation (coming from a Korean elder taking care of the young culture) but I want nothing more than to have dispensable income to treat my younger cousins, or some of my younger friends living the student lifestyle.
I’m a well fed happy camper at the moment. And my heart is glowing with love :)
It’s a great activity because even though while being somewhat goal-oriented, you get to imagine it as pursuing an aspiration. Aspirations bring journeys and discovery along the way - opposed to goals which focus on the destination.
Goals also leave you feeling dry and disappointed when they aren’t achieved. And the pursuit of reaching a goal constantly gives that “high and dry” feeling from valuing through external rewards.
Try thinking of it valued intrinsically: the pursuit of an aspiration is about the journey of improvement; every step forward is an internal reward in itself. And after a point of pursuing your aspirations - you’ll realize you’ll suddenly have a pile of skills that popped out of nowhere, that make you irresistibly valuable as a human being :)
New Age? This stuff has existed and been practiced since before the Mayans, at the dawn of time. Just because spiritual and energetic healing is only now finally coming to the consciousness of North Americans doesn’t make it new at all. We’ve fallen out of harmonious and symbiotic spiritual balance with the universe, and now it’s time for us to return back with the rest of our world has already known for centuries.
We dislike things we’re bad at, and prefer things we’re good at. Where did this mentality come from?
It perhaps comes from such an overly obsessive desire to stay safe. Which is odd, since many of us North Americans are blessed to have the freedom and support to pursue our dreams - yet most of us don’t take this freedom to push our own creative limits and capabilities.
Ever notice that the major pursuit for one’s career is to find a “good job” that is stable and holds a decent salary - secondary to that is the actual content of work. And when we hear stories about successful entrepreneurs, we bask in awe at the idea of someone pursuing something greater than themselves and far more challenging in a hopefully meaningful way. The awe is knowing that while incredibly challenging start something new, it requires high levels of energetic sustenance to pursue the challenging world of start-ups (with everyday start-up stress forcefully attempting to discourage you). The only survival is to have a deep down inner passion that keeps you going towards your cause. And it doesn’t matter what that cause is - sometimes it may not be as honorable, such as the pursuit for ego and greed, and sometimes it is socially noble about making the world a better place to live in with your products or services available. Whatever it is - the respect we have for successful entrepreneurs is considered a height in achievement.
But the funny thing is - when we look at lower developed countries, it’s interesting to notice something phenomenal: everyone is an entrepreneur. They don’t have stable jobs as we do, and many have to struggle for daily survival through incredibly clever means of living and earning. Everyone has their own clever businesses, finding their own means to get by.
As North Americans, why are we so damn scared of failing? Are we honestly a society that practically ignores the values and practices of failure, and assumes the epitome of achievement lies in how “successful” what we do is?
I noticed this because as a teaching assistant an mentor to a few, I have to constantly struggle with the response of students telling me “oh no, I hate that” and then when asking why, they respond “because I’m so bad at it”.
Everyone is bad at everything at one point. At one point in your mama’s belly, you couldn’t even breathe on your own. It was difficult. You couldn’t survive on your own. After birth, you were bad at walking. Bad at talking. Bad at math, sciences, business… but unlike us currently as socially influenced young adults, we never registered the polarity of “success/failure” concepts. We just did, and learned along the way.
Think of a recent moment where you humbled yourself by making a deep connection - that moment of insight which revealed that your old mindset has become outdated. Based on that particular description of learning, it’s easy to conclude that the emotions brought would bring deep embarrassment and shame. But rather, these moments always lights us up and excite about life and its dynamic and mysterious qualities. Learning as a fundamental human characteristic is genuinely enjoyable. Euphoric actually.
In theory, failing is painful, scary, and something to completely avoid. In practice, that is how we learn and gain insight about the world - in the most meaningful way possible.
Do things because they scare the shit out of you, or simply because you know it’s uncomfortable. These moments are the moments that mean the most in your life, and make life worth living.
Only two decent laptop companies out there? Apple & Lenovo? I went by Staples and looked at laptops and how horrific the screens and shotty their build construction were.
My thoughts: three things we tend to compromise on, which is ironic because these are the 3 physical interfaces in which humans interact with computers:
1) The quality of the screen
2) The comfortably of a mouse
3) The pleasurability of a keyboard
People think I’m nuts when I’m willing to spend $50+ on a mouse. Think about it, how many hours are most of us on a computer? In those hours, what is our hand interfacing with?
Or that I’d spend money on a good screen. What do we stare at, 100% of the time we are spending most of our day on a computer?
(Keyboard okay is a bit of a luxury, but I can appreciate a good keyboard. For those who write (or program) a lot, can also understand this as well.)
But honestly, think about it: if you’re spending a large percentage of your day on the computer - its important for the physical interfaces to work in favor of your lifestyle. Just think about how unnatural it is what you are physically doing for hours on end. Especially with computer mice that don’t even fit your hand. Imagine wearing wrong sized shoes all day. Or glasses with a wrong prescription.
The next step is getting a good chair.
It’s your physical well being at stake. Love your body not just your processor :)
(p.s. Ergonomic mice is where Apple falls short… And yes I’m aware Lenovo makes visual eye-sore machines. But that is unrelated to this post lol)
Seeing people read actually makes me really happy. Especially young adults reading on the bus, specifically other males like myself. Just because it’s so uncommon - its like I’m in the demographic of people who fear books and leisure reading because it’s uncool or nerdy. There are tons of people plugged into their headphones, or texting feverishly to pass time but rarely do we see others taking a journey through the passage of written word.
I don’t think reading is nerdy at all or anything to be ashamed of. I give my utmost respect to those who seek pleasure in either the fictitious narratives of others or through the expansion of knowledge within the exposure to new information.
Perhaps it was associated with elementary school where the bookworm would choose to read over social interaction. But as an adult, it’s not like we choose to read over human interaction. We compliment our lives with it. And instead of making us more dull - it makes us far more interesting with knowledge to gain.