Monday, September 30, 2013

Yet we worry in despair!

The news may be serially negative, the outlook bad, the statistics shocking, the stories terrifying, and the future may look as bleak as never before, yet the birds will fly, sing and chirp in the sky. Not a day will they share your in your stress. Though the economy be in a dreaded recession, the unemployment rates skyrocket unabated, and global world concerns rise on every turn, surely the lilies of the field will blossom and butterflies colour the sky without restraint. Though various social concerns arise each day, with them, political clashes, policy differences, and varied opinions leading to hatred and anger, rest assured the sun will shine on all who embrace it, and the air will flow to all, despite inclinations. See how the lilies and birds of the sky grow. They neither toil, reap nor worry about tomorrow, yet He keeps them and they continue to glow. What more you who are above all creation? Today declare this, that you will choose to see the positive side of life and smile at that small little thing you would ordinarily not even notice in the rush of life. You will wake up confident, thankful and ready to see the flowers dancing, swaying and swinging, screaming in colour hoping to catch your eye for just a moment, and hear the birds of the sky sing never ending songs which you ordinarily only hear subliminally, then watch the sun’s beautiful sunset end it all in grand style. Yes there is more to life than worry and stress. As for me, I will take courage to change things I can change, accept those that I cannot change, and avoid worry and stress where I can. This kind of serenity will make me wiser in my life.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Go for broke on goals and targets?

I was having a discussion with someone where I mentioned my concerns regarding the pursuit of my goals and targets. I narrated my worries and frustrations and strategies I can use to get myself where I want to be. The other person then told me to look back at my past accomplishments and what I have done and achieved, then asked me to look at other people who may not have done and achieved what I have managed to. I replied by saying I do not find joy and comfort in past glory as it is no longer a motivation for me, nor do I find solace in comparison with other people as they do not remove my goals and targets, they still remain for me to fulfil. I then felt a bit of selfishness and insatiable ambition but then again that is just me pushing for what I want to achieve. There is by the way the flipside of people who have done better than I have. I should then also compare myself to them, which renders the comparison issue inconclusive. I believe in goals which must be met no matter how other people are doing in their lives. So today I ask, to what extent or if at all, should one be comforted, consoled or find joy in past achievements as well as comparison with other people who "have not done too well"? That being relative in any case, granted but let us not dwell much on it. In tragic situations and episodes of loss, people do use comparison in comforting one another by saying one is better off and things could have been worse and so forth to make someone feel better. So should one pursue their own goals independently and relentlessly? You now know my position, what is yours?

Image adapted from Celestine Chua

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Journey to greatness

I was inspired while watching the September 2013 boxing match between Mayweather and Alvarez. I found the match quite interesting to watch for someone who is not a boxing fan, hence I thought of writing about it. As I sat there watching, certain words flashed in my mind as I looked at the two men contesting to retain their records. Words like preparation, calm, composure, courage, endurance, determination, inner strength, purpose, discipline, skill, tact, strategy, focus and technique. Floyd Mayweather was evidently smaller than Canelo Alvarez, but he did not look intimidated, threatened or cowed. He knew how to use the right strategy for the opponent at hand to ensure he achieved his goal. Both men were determined to keep their unbeaten records, yet they did not lose their professionalism and sportsmanship in trying to beat their rival. They maintained professional calm while fighting for success. In just over half an hour the fight would be over and the winner announced. I thought to myself how greatness seems easy and possibly given when someone succeeds, yet there is a lot of behind the scenes, long hard work that not many may see. Mental preparation went into that match to build the desired confidence, perseverance and strength. Training hours were put in coupled with unique eating habits and many other opportunity costs which were paid in preparation. Success in one round did not mean complacency in another. The same amount of zeal, effort and discipline, if not more, was required in all rounds until completion. I felt inspired to think that where there is a goal, purpose and passion coupled with commitment and determination, there is definitely greatness at the end of that road. One who uses that which they have in their hand strategically and tactfully in light of their environment ultimately gets the glory.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Days when you are just not having it...

You awake but do not feel like living, breathe but do not embrace the life around, shower and feel not refreshed, sing but do not hear the lyrics, eat but do not taste the flavour, labor without the joy of contribution, converse but do not make sense, aspire but do not achieve the desired, plan but never get anything done. It is one of those days when you feel empty, lifeless, barren, constrained, gagged, suppressed, choked, muffled and tied up. You are just not having it.

....anyone identify with this and how have you dealt with it?

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The joy of success

The world that looked unsympathetic, hard and cold, now seemingly becomes empathetic, warm and caring. Everything suddenly turns to your favour and you forget your past struggles and toils. You feel great and overwhelmed simultaneously, as you try to comprehend and assimilate the victory. Surrounding, lifting, making you feel mighty and big. This is the joy of success that comes after hard work. Joy that overshadows past pain, sorrow and waiting and removes perceived failure, opening new horizons.This is where stagnation gives way to long term progression, which offers opportunities which seemed unimaginable. Friends celebrate with you as they share your achievement. They dance and laugh with you knowing your joy is theirs also Now you can only move forward to new frontiers, as you shape your life and purpose with a difference. You look back at the toil, the wait and hardship. The road seemed so long, treacherous and endless just then, but now it all seems like it was a short patch. Yes it seemed like forever before success came, but now it  is just the joy of success in your embrace.

Image adapted from Santosh Puthran

Monday, September 2, 2013

I would choose you

I know I have not done many special things that can compare, but one thing I can do is say many special things that can express my gratitude. Many have said it, and it still rings true, I am here because of you. God gave me you, and you accepted me where others have rejected. You took the responsibility that comes with that acceptance. The pain, disappointment, maybe even shame and sleepless nights. Truly also the contentment, peace, satisfaction, joy, respect, recognition and sharing that comes with that acceptance. I know what you have paid all your life for me even though I may not say. You are a humbling example of giving life and love while absorbing pain and hurt. I cannot imagine another for myself under any circumstance. You needed so that I could need not, and lost your joy so that I could have mine. You bore it all for my sake and I wish I could give my life for your sake. You gave up your life so I could have mine, though it may seem as if you have lived your life. What an honour and privilege you gave me to also live my life stemming from your courage and strength. You shivered where you could have warmed-up so that I could be warm and starved where you could have had much to spare so that I could have plenty. You squeezed the little strength you had left in you for my sake, so that I could be stronger, in good health and bubbling with joy, with not a single worry in the world. Tears swell in my eyes and emotions rise up in me, when I think and look back at all that you have stood for where I am concerned, and the sacrifice, fire and passion that simmered in your heart for me. I stood on your shoulders, even stumbling and walking all over you, and you rose to the occasion and carried me with tender love and care. Indeed you are greatest human being in my books. You are so, because it is not easy to raise someone like me and remain sane. So what I am simply saying is, if I had to do it all again and needed someone to raise me, I would choose you.