Man’s search for meaning

Man's search for meaning

This book was one of the toughest books I’ve ever read. It is about a psychiatrist’s horrific experience in Nazi death camps. When I envisioned what he had gone through, I literally felt sick to my stomach. I wondered what I would’ve done in his place.

Would I have had the will to live? How could I go on if I feel like the suffering will never end?

This post is not a book summary. I just want to share a few notable quotes that caught my attention and add my views on it.

 

“When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.”

You either learn to adapt or give up…there’s really no other option.

 

“Those who have a ‘why’ to live, can bear with almost any ‘how’.”

We all need that purpose or ‘why’ to keep going. Your ‘why’ may differ from mine. But without a reason, there’s no meaning. Without meaning, there’s no point. What gives your life meaning?

  Continue reading “Man’s search for meaning”

30,000 days

To my dear readers,

It has been a long time since my last blog post. Sorry! I am so busy nowadays. T_T. I need a lot of inspiration in order to write. Anyhow, I would like to share a real story with you. Hopefully, it will touch you in some ways.


 

A few weeks ago, I found out A tried to commit suicide because he was suffering too much. A was in constant physical pain and couldn’t take it anymore.

I found out because A went missing on a mutual server we shared. Everyone was worried about him and wanted me to find out whether he was ok or not. (I had met A in real life once so I had his number).

When I called, A picked up and sounded really emotional. I was bewildered and wanted to know what happened. However, he didn’t go into details. All he said was that he was in the hospital and that it may take him 2 months before he’d be back.

Since it was obvious A didn’t want to talk, we hung up and I told the boys that he was at the hospital. All of us were really worried because we didn’t know why A had to stay there for so long. Usually, Canadian hospitals would try to kick you out as quickly as possible.

Was he terminally ill? Did he get into a huge accident? There were so many unanswered questions going through our minds. Continue reading “30,000 days”

Who says you can’t? You do

Who says you can'tIt has been so long since I last blogged! Today, I’m back again with another inspirational post. This time, I’m going to be posting quotes from the book “Who says you can’t? You do” by Daniel Chidiac.

All the quotes I’m about to mention are from the novel itself. I reflect on everything Daniel says and it really pushes me to be more. It is incredibly empowering and motivational. I hope his words will also have a similar effect on you.

If you take a good look around, you will notice that most people would have perceived every creation as impossible before it was created.

Everything seems impossible at first. If 30 years ago, someone told you that in the future they would be able to use their phones to take pictures and face-time with someone across the world, would you have believed it?

I hear people say to me, “I know how life works; you wake up, go to work, and come home. It’s the same thing every day.” My reply is, “No, that’s how your life works.”

This is so powerful. How does this statement make you feel?

It is only achievement and fulfilment together that brands someone truly successful.

I completely agree. What is your definition of success?

Most people know what they want; they just believe it’s out of their reach. We let so many dreams, visions and ideals slip because we think others might find them stupid, that it will be too hard, or we give up due to the hurdles we come across. 

Sometimes, it seems like it’s impossible. As a result, we don’t even bother to try in order to avoid the likelihood of disappointment.

Everyone on the road of achievement has experienced self-doubt. Those who win, though, always overpower that doubt with self-assurance. You’re not the only one that has or will experience hardship on your road.

You’re not the only one who is experiencing hardship. But if it’s something you want, you must persevere.  Continue reading “Who says you can’t? You do”

Depression

Depression

Years ago, I had considered writing a post on depression. But in the end, I never did it because it was such a dark topic.

But today, I felt the need to do so due to Kim Jonghyun’s suicide on Dec 18th. For those who are unaware, he was a member of a popular K-pop group called SHINee.

In my opinion, all of us are a bit broken on the inside. None of us are totally ok. Most of us just try to hide or ignore the negative emotions inside of us. Perhaps, we try distracting ourselves or avoid thinking about it.

There is so much stigma about mental illness, and our society is not very forgiving. However, I strongly believe the Asian culture is even worse. The amount of societal pressure and open criticism people experience is unbelievable.

If you try to tell others how you feel, most people will put the blame on you:

“Why are you depressed? Your life is already so much better than so many other people. Think about those who live in a 3rd world country and have no food and water!”    

“Your life is so good. You’re just ungrateful and spoiled.” Continue reading “Depression”

The Alchemist

The Alchemist

This post is based on my interpretations of the Alchemist. This book is one of my favorite fictional books. It is very meaningful and it resonates a lot with me. I specifically chose 9 quotes that had the most impact on me.

“How did you learn to read?” the girl asked at one point.
“Like everybody learns,” he said. “In school.”
“Well, if you know how to read, why are you just a shepherd?”

The way I interpreted this was, “If you have so much potential, why don’t you do more with your life?”

Deep down, I feel like we can all accomplish more than we think. But most of us just wants to get to a comfortable point, and then we stop. We stop because perhaps we’re satisfied. Or maybe, it’s good enough.

If I became a monster today, and decided to kill them, one by one, they would become aware only after most of the flock had been slaughtered, thought the boy. They trust me, and they’ve forgotten how to rely on their own instincts, because I lead them to nourishment.

The boy was originally a shepherd. Each day, he would lead his flock to a field so they could eat. But he realized that the sheep had no idea if he ever took a different route. The sheep doesn’t notice any of the changes (if he tries to do something new) The sheep just aimlessly followed him…because they only wanted food and water.

What are you willing to sacrifice for food and water?

“Well, he thought about that,” the old man said. “But bakers are more important people than shepherds. Bakers have homes, while shepherds sleep out in the open. Parents would rather see their children marry bakers than shepherds.”

Certainty is very important. We want to know that we’re going to be ok. If we take a riskier route and the future is unknown, the risk might not be worth it. Sometimes, you have to sacrifice your dreams in exchange for stability.  Continue reading “The Alchemist”

The Power of Habit

the-power-of-habit

This post is based on the book, “The power of habit” by Charlies Duhigg. I actually read this book awhile ago but I haven’t written a post on it until now because it is very difficult to write a post that has less than a thousand words when the book is so compacted with information.

Anyhow, I shall try my best.

Basically, in the core of every habit, there is a cue -> routine -> and reward. Something has to happen and trigger you to do a task. In addition, we don’t want to do it unless we are getting a reward from it.

For example: You’re upset (cue), and then you start to eat (routine), then you feel better (reward).


Rewards from drinking?

“Often, intoxication doesn’t make the list. Alcoholics crave a drink because it offers escape, relaxation, companionship, the blunting of anxieties, and an opportunity for emotional release. They don’t necessarily crave getting drunk.” 

To me, this is very interesting because I know a lot of people struggling from addiction and I always want to provide ways for them to quit. However, the golden rule of habit change is that you can’t extinguish a bad habit, you can only change it.

And how do you do that?

You have to change the routine but understand that the cue  (For example: stress) and the reward (feeling less stressed) will be the same. 

So, first, you have to figure out the cue. Ex. You know that you want to drink because it makes you feel less stressed.

Now that you’re aware of what triggers your behaviour, it is easier to control.

Is there anything else that makes you feel better when you’re stressed? As long as you can find an activity that can give you the same reward (feeling less stressed), you will be able to change your habit.


Another interesting part about the book was the story about Febreze. For those of you who live in North America, you are probably familiar with the brand Febreze. Febreze is a brand of household odour eliminators manufactured by P&G.

Basically, when P&G first created this product, they thought it would be a massive success. They thought, “Wow! We have such a great product! People will buy it because they wouldn’t want their homes to stink!”

But they were wrong.  Continue reading “The Power of Habit”

Don’t assume

To my dear readers,

I’m back! Sorry for not posting last week. I was very unwell. Fortunately, I feel better now. 🙂   Anyhow, today’s post is based on one of my real life interactions with a friend.

A few weeks ago, I finally caught up with my friend Nathan (fake name) after four years of not seeing him. Back in the days, we used to go to events and parties together. But due to my autoimmune disorder, I had been too ill in the past few years to attend any of his parties.

Nonetheless, we still stayed in touch via facebook and would update each other from time to time.

When we met up, Nathan was telling me how he had been going through depression and wanted to kill himself. Here was part of our conversation:

Nathan: Grace, you know, last year was so hard for me. I wanted to kill myself because I felt like my life was not worth living. My job contract ended and I didn’t get extended. I turned 30 and I am still living at home. Everyone on facebook seems to be doing better than me. I thought by now I would have a place of my own. I thought by now, I would have my own family.  Continue reading “Don’t assume”