Goals of 2021 – Through Thick and Thin

How do I see through the fog of which I am about to embark?

At the end of each and every year just like a tradition, I write two letters to myself. A reflection of the year that has past and a look into the future, a year ahead to see the possibilities that lay before me. This is of the latter and I must admit, it is the hardest one I have ever had to write.

It would be easy for me to sit back and repeat the goals of 2020, many of which had been incomplete, put on hold because of world events. But that would mean that there had been no insights this year, that not only was the world put on hold, I was as well. Luckily for me, that’s not the case, upon pondering through my thoughts, 2021 looks to be one of the most important pivots of my life and below, my goals reflect that.

I challenge myself not only to take on the goals of 2020, but new daunting yet exciting ones as well. 2021 isn’t going to be easy, but then again, who said life was anything but, right?

  1. (On hold from 2020) A sense of community – One of the things that really surprised me this year was the overwhelming sense of shift in the community from an in-person perspective over to the virtual space. I’ve connected with a lot of great people within this online space but there’s always the missing element that only being next to someone can give. What this is exactly I am not yet sure, but I hope when we can all get together again without fear, I can rediscover this. To summarise, I am in search to make a deep connection with a community here in London, i.e. be an integral part of at least one community organisation or group by the end of 2021.
  2. (On hold from 2020) Travelling and exploring – 2020 was not the best year for eager travellers and explorers like myself and leading into the new year it still looks grim. I’m hoping that in the second half of 2021, we can rekindle this fire. It’s important to remember that my travel plans will continue to be led by my love for music, culture and people just as it was in the previous years. What I must do this year however is to make sure I meet more people along the way
  3. Healthy cooking and advanced baking – 2020 was a great year to explore my inner chef, being home all day for every meal meant that there was great opportunity to be creative. Now it’s time to take that to the next step. I want to really know what it is I am eating and how that fits into a “balanced” diet everyone keeps talking about. I’m looking at the food triangle as a good start for this but through this new year, I want to learn healthy recipes, eat less meat and more greens like mom always used to say. Baking on the other hand still feels like the dark arts! How does yeast work? why does flour quadruple it’s size in the oven, how can I bake something healthy without using a ridiculous amount of butter and sugar, really? If you know me, you know that i’m not much for sweets and I’ve always connected baking with being sweet. I know now that this is not always the case and will seek that out this year. Included in this is the making of baobaos and traditional Chinese baking!
  4. A new venture – Some of you might already know that I have something I’ve been working on through 2020. 2021 is the year I will try to build a new skillset to accompany that something. I’m talking about things like basic coding and website design, learning about business structure and finances. No matter what happens on this journey, there’s something I can learn and take from it.
  5. Reading at a higher level – 2020 was a great year for establishing some amazing reading habits. Every night now, I can’t fall asleep without having read my book! So the question for 2021 is, how can I top that? I’ve considered early morning reads, it’s a possibility and might be a really good start to the day. But one thing I know for sure is that I want to read a much more wider range of genres and go through a lot more books while I’m at it. Let’s set the goal at 25 books for 2021 and a large number of them to be non-fiction.
  6. Meditation & lucid dreaming – I began the practice of meditation over 10 years ago and what ties closely with that was the ability to learn to lucid dream. A few years back, I put this on hold. It was on hold because my sleeping patterns were off, I struggled to recall dreams and I was always moving from one place to another. This year, I want to bring that back. If this year permits, I’d like to attend some regular meditation classes and recall more dreams than I do now. I need to get into a regular pattern of dream journaling and finding a community out there who can support that.
  7. Social media frenzy – One of my big goals this year is to know exactly what information I take in day to day and from where. It’s crazy that in todays world, algorithms determine almost everything that you see on your social media feeds, so much so that you are drowned and lost in it! Today, my social media feeds are a total mess but with this goal, I want to clean it up. This includes improving the level of security on all my accounts, understanding how my data is being used and what I will and will not allow to be used, ensuring that I see my friends posts first before all else and making certain that the news outlets, articles, stories and content is one that is highly reliable from respectable sources and is of a high quality. Yes, that means this is the beginning of the end for many so called “news” outlets that use cryptic memes and comedic articles to subtly feed you their views.

So with that, I leave you with one thought. What are your goals for the year? How have you set them upon these uncertain times?

Thanks for reading. Happy goal setting and here’s a big wish for you and your family for good health and prosperity in the new year! Love, Jason.

Feature image – The opening celebration held at Tomorrowland, a famous yearly gathering of people from all around the world for the absolute appreciation for music, culture and love taken on the 18th of July 2019. It is only a matter of time that we are all reunited not only for the love of what this represents but the love for each other as a human species.

A Call to Remember

Today is a wonderful day.

We’re less than 2 weeks till Christmas, the most incredible time of the year where families come together and friends unite to celebrate what was traditionally the birth of Christ but now is also (for the most of us), the love we all share for one other.

I want so much to be a part of this, to fill our hearts full of love, not only just our socks or shopping baskets!

So this year and starting with today, I set out on a personal quest to share with you and all those whom I love dearly a time for me and you to catch-up, share the highlights in our lives, to rekindle our friendship and most importantly SUPPORT each other in our life’s goals, aspirations and passions.

See you soon,

Love, Jason

Recording the Journey – Ask Why

The Golden Circle at it’s core teaches us to ask the question of why we do what we do in the world of business and life and the fact that the two are becoming ever less separated from one other. If we can start with the why, the purpose of your goals, your ideals and beliefs will be something that is engraved into the how and what it is that you do.

Those of whom believe in what you believe will see this. Those of whom who wish to achieve a similar goal, who wish to see a similar ideal succeed in a world where it does not yet will join you in the great cause.

This generation is at the greatest crossroad in human kind. We are stuck in between the way we have always done things and the modern world where anything and everything has been enabled and opened up for us. For once people truly have access to global information and opportunities and with this we each seek for more purpose than ever.

The great challenge of our generation will not be to find what our purpose is, the challenge for our generation is creating a world where everyone has a sense of purpose. Purpose is that sense that we are part of something bigger than ourselves, that we are needed, that we have something better ahead to work for. Purpose is what creates true happiness. I truly believe these words and they’re not just mine, they’re shared by many who believe in humanity.

With this in mind, I believe it is one of the most important things in life to ask ourselves why we do what we do, why we follow the things we do, why we believe what others believe and most importantly, once we’ve found purpose within, how we can create a sense of purpose for others.

Feature image – Awoken by my thoughts early in the morning as often happens, I leap to my desk to brainstorm ideas and put my thoughts on paper. Taken on the 7th of June 2020.

Goals of 2020 – Shifting Habits

2020; but before I delve into the new year, I must reflect upon the last.

How would you describe 2019? Was it what you expected?

Incredibly enough, yes. A large part of 2019 went on as expected. To my surprise, a lot of predictions made about the year were indeed correct and the success of those goals set for the year demonstrate that with a cheerful glow. For a year to seem so full of uncertainty, how did I at the other side find it to be so foreseeable? Looking back, I think it has a lot to do with knowing myself quite well. If you’d asked me a year ago how do I’d balance my work life, my travels and my good health in this new country, I’d answer it in the exact same way I would now. I’d say that I’d promised myself not to overwork even if the conditions here in London were different back home, I’d say that I’d make sure to travel for the love of music, culture and the people and all three have been what exploring has been all about this year; finally, I’d say that I’d find a way to keep healthy in my own means, that involves something I will both enjoy and keep me in good shape and not only has that been true, but it’s also been incredible for the finances, now with me cooking healthy meals more than ever and cycling to and from work.

What was harder than I anticipated this year was the ability to really be a part of a community here. It’s hard to say what happened throughout the course of the year to cause this feeling because even though I felt like I did try (for example, dancing classes, board game nights, joining an esports community). Why is it so that I don’t yet “feel” I was part of a real strong community? This is a tough question to answer and my first blog post for the year will try to answer this, but for now, let’s stick to goals.

Like every year I inscribe my goals, dreams and passions for the upcoming year. This year we see more bigger, bolder and challenging goals than the previous, wish me luck!

  1. A sense of community – I’m cheating by bringing this one over from 2019 but to me, it’s unfinished. I underestimated how tough this was to achieve, maybe it’s London, maybe it’s me? Check out one of my early posts in Jan 2020 for a deeper look into it but for now, there’s more I can do to uphold this goal of mine and it is a challenge I will take on head first. To summarise, I am in search to make a deep connection with a community here in London, i.e be an integral part of at least one community organisation or group by the end of 2020.
  2. My road to Engineering Chartership – I love being an engineer for so many reasons, the work I do is satisfying, challenging and gives me purpose and meaning. That’s why, I am taking on a great challenge to take the first steps towards Engineering Chartership showing a dedication to the field and respect for all those who have come before me and shared their combined wisdom. I’ve already set up an ambitious timetable separate to this blog, wish me luck.
  3. Travelling and exploring – 2019 was an absolutely incredible year of experiences gained from travelling and exploring. I am still in total reflection of everything that has happened in the past year but in summary I have been totally humbled and have grown in ways of empathy and understanding that have helped reshaped some of my core beliefs and ideals. It’s important to remember that my travels this year will continue to be led by my love for music, culture and people just as it was in 2019. What I must do this year however is to make sure I meet more people along the way! How about, set a goal to go to at least one event where people gather (non music festival related) per holiday.
  4. Advanced cooking and baking – Here we go! ready for Jason’s masterclass? cause he’s not ready at all to do one hah! But with that being said, from knowing pretty much nothing about cooking or baking at the beginning of 2019 and now making myself delicious meals (I rarely go out and eat now because let’s face it, I can pretty much make the same at home myself), I’ve been pretty happy with myself. The question is, how do I continue to challenge myself in the field? Well, how about some real entries into the cookbook? Well that’s my goal, let’s get a cookbook going this year! (or maybe a spreadsheet, let’s see about that!).
  5. Sunday me day – This is something I am bringing back from my former 2018 years. 2019 was a tough year to keep up with this because I was always on my toes, but now I am more settled, I want to bring back Sunday me day. What does that involve? It’s easy, it’s relaxing, it’s a break from having to “do” things. I make sure nothing is on the calendar for Sundays and I make it a day to do whatever feels right, it could be anything from sleeping, blogging, gaming for a whole days end. But what I am really looking forward to is turning the day into a weekly “activity” day. Let’s say I want to learn more about knitting. I would set up what it looks like to do a 5 day course in knitting and over the course of 5 Sundays, I would practice the art. It’s self learning, but doing something that makes me happy and learning a new skill at the same time.
  6. Reading – Does anyone know how I can learn to read faster? Seriously, I want to read 50+ books a year but only get through a pinch of that if I am lucky. It doesn’t make it any easier that I always tend to pick pretty thick books! I want to and must read more this year, substantially more. I am setting myself a goal of 24 books this year, it’s going to be tough, 2 books per month and I’m already a bit behind. It’s something I love to do so let’s make it a priority.
  7. Fitness – Let’s be honest here, cycling on average half an hour a day for the year, I don’t think I can top that and I’m not sure I need to. I’m happy with my fitness levels, I feel healthy and great! Unless I suddenly have the urge to join a sumo class or some sort, let’s be humble and proud to keep doing what I’m doing. 30 minutes on average each day for the year cycling. GO! 🙂

So with that, I leave you with a thought. What are your goals for the year? How do you plan to be the best person that you can be during the year. Comment or message me personally, I would truly like to know OR have you simply not thought about it?

Thanks for reading. With Love, always. Jason ❤

P.S. Did you notice with the last 3 goals representing the harmony of the mind, body and spirit/soul?

Feature image – The London to Brighton Bike ride supporting the British Heart Foundation completed on the 16th of June 2019.

Five Years

Is it just me or does everyone hit a point in their lives where they think about where they are in life and how a lot of it, or certain aspects of it are not aligned with their goals and dreams they had in their minds.

Sometimes, even the thought of this reminds me of what sounds quite funny at first at the humble age of 26, but on a serious note, a midlife crisis. But what if this crisis is actually a representation of a modern crisis, one where it is a by-product of a generation that has been raised in the most globally connected, wealthy and “free” time in the history of mankind. We have something that our predesesors didn’t have until they were in their late thirties and that is more knowledge, more freedom and more choices. These choices whenever abundant can give rise to doubt; the what if’s that run through our minds when given options and we choose one over another.

The real big question is how does any of us know they’ve made the right choice? Some might tell you to follow your instincts, others base their decisions on the judgements of their close family and friends and furthermore others would use pure logic and reasoning to judge the right move. Risk over reward, right? Well, everyone has their own take on this and the truth is, no one really has the right answer.

All I know is that for me personally, I am at a crossroad, a point where I’ve still the freedom to change the direction in my life. Maybe that’s one we can all take away though, maybe at any given “present” moment, we can make that change. But for now, I am reaching what people call the 5-year mark, or the 5-year rule; it marks when you have been at a company or role for that amount of time and it’s a good time to change companies, go for that payrise or what I think is becoming more and more relevant in today’s age, change careers.

It was only years ago where we would say that job stability or dare I say life stability came from the amount of years you were employed for in a company. In fact, it’s quite likely we get that from our older colleagues of whom we work with; 10 years, 15 years, 25 years, 30 years! They’re incredibly proud of it and to me, that is one hell of an achievement because I can’t see further than 6 months into my future let alone 10 years!

Times have changed and they’ve changed so rapidly at that, I struggle to believe that staying in one company, in one role, being the “master of one” instead of the “jack of all trades” will be enough to survive in this modern world. This is not because it is not important to be a master, it is because it is increasingly becomming tougher to be a master of any trade. The knowledge that a master holds is becoming increasingly easier to access, you can see that with not just the immensity of the global knowledge held on the internet but the expert driven courses which can be found at your fingertips. Anyone can be an expert in a field so long as they put in the effort and significantly less time than 30 years. But even then, it is not those singular experts that truly move the world and make a difference, I believe it is those whom can bring expertise from a number of fields into one that can make the real change in the world.

So let’s say, we follow the 5-year rule, but the modern one. In 30 year’s you would of had 6 different careers, all spanning a wide range of interests, hobbies, dreams, goals and passions. Maybe one or two of them you really enjoyed and stayed on for longer, and maybe those in which you did not enjoy so much you stayed less.

Now I propose the most important question, one for the readers to think about, who has more expertise after 30 years? Who is more likely to have followed his or her dreams, achieved greater heights and will live to tell more stories?

It’s still a tough question, one that we all still have our own opinions on, but maybe this time after reading this, with just that tiny bit more clarity.

Thanks for reading my friends, I guess this one was more for me at this point of time in my life. It hasn’t come across because I don’t enjoy my work or I think there’s something better out there for me; it’s more the side of me that seeks to learn more about the world, the undying curiosity and adventure that I seek. Is one life too short to be spending 80% of your time on one thing? I would always, always, always say yes.

Feature image – Represents how slow we should be living life in retrospect to how fast it feels; this was during my wanderings on a little island national park at Yeosu-si, Jeollanam-do, South Korea taken on the 30th August 2017

Goals of 2019 – Settle

What an incredible start to 2019.

The new years day was spent waking up one last time to a sunrise coming through into the farmhouse home. Into a place I’ve called home for the last 26 years and to be honest, I don’t intend on changing that title; wherever I go in this world. But where I go on this day is as far away as one can. Across the world is a place I will call home for the next few years and as of this moment, I dont know how to feel about that. Mum cooks up something wonderful as always, an extra nutritious meal to ready my flight and off to the airport I go.

The next thing I know, I say goodbye to the ones I love so dearly and I’m already on my flight. How did I get here so fast? It’s what everyone says after waiting for this moment for what feels like a lifetime. You know that feeling, of waiting for that holiday that’s in a years time, but it is now, at this very moment? Well I’ve been dreaming of this since before my teens, so how do I explain it? Something I should be good at, but my answer is I don’t know.

How do you explain emotions that the English language does not relate? I finally understand why some words translated from other languages take multiple sentences to explain and even still don’t convey its true meaning. Linguistics is a very complicated and very intresting topic. Well that’s what it felt like, something that words could not explain, an enormous amount of emotions of all kinds rushed into me as I sat on that plane in which felt like another lifetime. Do I tear up? Do I smile? Do I stare into space or look at the adventure ahead? I don’t know, so I just sit there, sit there and exist.

Let’s…let’s not dwell on that thought.


Like every year I inscribe my goals, dreams and passions for the upcoming year. This one was supposed to be short and sweet, but turned out to be a lot more than expected; so here goes:

  1. Learn to be a good house husband. Go ahead, have a giggle. But in all seriousness, With independence comes responsibility. I will learn to cook, to clean, to wash. I will learn to make my bed each morning and keep to a good schedule. I will learn not to put wool clothing in the dryer, to not leave food out in the open and to keep that toilet seat down; that’s a promise.
  2. Fitness. 2018 was a very proud year for me. I am so incredibly surprised that I made it through the entire year without doing any exercise, eating anything I wanted and still came out looking okay; with a small baby belly, but that’s OK. But not 2019 I don’t. I will jog and cycle to and from work on a basis greater than 4 times a week (the truth is, i’m planning on smashing this goal by a further 2 or more).
  3. Travel goals are one of my biggest and it all starts with a bit of music. Music festivals will guide me throughout the year, a major decider of where I will go and visit. Let’s sit that goal at 4 right now with twice as much cities inbetween! So Europe, here I come. There’s a lot more to discuss here, where and why, but this is for goals so I kept it short.
  4. Organise. There are a few things that have been on my checklist for a while that I need to organise. Why does it feel like there are always more things to organise in life? Will I be forever trying to organise? We will see, for now, I want that super spreadsheet (with my finances, taxes, travel schedules) to be up to date. I want my social media to be organised, Instagram will be a place for the major places i’ve visited, facts and figures and things to learn for everyone; this will be automated by the end of the year. Facebook will continue as it is, a great place to be with friends and for the memories and my blog here and it’s “series editions” will continue to be updated to connect on a deeper level with my best of friends. My LinkedIN will stay closely as it is, updated as my career progresses. Snapchat has never been big for me, nor has Twitter or others and that’s the way they will stay.
  5. I want to be a part of a community here in London, at least one by the end of the year. There are a few ideas which surround big things of interest which I will be pursuing this year, these include the following: Joining a tennis/ badminton club and playing regularly. Being a part of an outdoorsy group with lots of hiking, camping and other exciting outdoor activities. Joining a regular board games get together or a group of people who love to do such activities as movies, after work drinks and etc. Or maybe learning something new with people, I have goals to learn how to dance and to improve my cultural Chinese language. Or again, maybe this could be something like working closely with industry groups tied to my area of work. To be honest, the possibilities here are wide and endless, but I’m looking for atleast one strong group and a number of other smaller groups that I can be a part of, a community as to say.

So with that, I leave you with a thought. What are your goals for the year? How do you plan to be the best person that you can be during the year. Comment or message me personally, I would truly like to know. OR have you simply not thought about it?

Thanks for reading. With Love, always. Jason ❤

When I ask – Choose your one favourite place…

In my travels I have met many people, each and every one of them with beautiful stories to tell. What I enjoy doing rather than it’s opposite, is listening.

There are a number of topics which I love to bring up, that I love to ask and learn from others. Here is just one:

“If you could choose one place in the world you have been to that moved you, that you find incredibly amazing, where would that be and why?”

Here, I will tell you the where, but not the why, because the why is for you and I to experience ourselves. It is my goal to embark and visit these places, uniquely moving to those whom I have known personally. It’s not something that can simply be googled or seen on social media because these are the places that have truly been felt by those who have been. So, here goes, and in no particular order:

  • James says “Zermatt, Switzerland”
  • Stephanie says “Les Nympheas, France”
  • Matt says “Covent Garden, London, United Kingdom”
  • Erick says “Thaipusam, Batu Caves, India”
  • Carmen says “Naples, Italy”
  • Kim says “Pamplona, Spain”
  • Kevin says “Zell am See, Austria”
  • Agata says “Zakrzowek, Poland”

How could this list not be complete without my own right? As as tough of a question this is, i’ll do my best to answer.

  • Jason says “Queenstown, New Zealand”

Undoubtly this list is long and will only grow as time passes. I can only hope that one day I visit as many as I can and understand why it was their one choice.

With love, Jason ❤

Feature image – Rob Roys Peak, New Zealand. Taken on the 23rd November 2016

Positivity & Optimism

The truth is, I don’t have any more potential in life than anyone else in the world does.

But what I do have, is a high level of positivity and optimism for the future of both myself and those around me; this is undeniable and more importantly, this is unchanging.

Most of the success in my personal life, no matter how small or big can be attributed to one of only a few things and the biggest one of them all is my perspective. I view a large number of situations with a positive outlook, to see the light in even the darkest situations; just as Ying and Yang is present in our lives, it is also present in every situation, no matter how grim it looks. To be able to break down into pieces what it is that is bringing you sadness, sorrow and pain and holding onto the piece that can give you hope Is a strength that can get you through even the toughest times in your life.

For example, my first job as a door to door salesman on full commission during my summer holidays. I spent the first 3 weeks, working 40+ hours walking the streets of Sydney without a single sale to be made. Do you wonder why the turnover ate was 95%? It was a brutal role for anyone who started in the industry, imagine pissing off almost everyone you meet just because you said hi to them at the door (yes, I was that annoying door salesman, but little do you know I’m just trying to work hard and make ends meat so you shut the door on my face). So by the end of those 3 weeks, 80% of the 20 odd people, those who were in my training session from the beginning had quit, they couldn’t handle the pressure and rejection, and to be honest rightly so, It was tough. But you see, instead of seeing the zero in my bank check after every week, I saw growth in myself, I found little changes in the way I spoke and moved when I talked to people and for the first time In my life, that shy little asian boy felt potential within himself and no doubt in the fourth week, he’d made his first of what would be a great number of sales which put him on the top 10 salesman of the month of September, that fately 2012 year.

Following closely is my undying optimism that everything and anything will find it’s way around. It’s interesting how sometimes people can be pessemistic about others being an optimist, but then again, I could say the same for pessimists and realists, however I don’t. I think that all three can bring a powerful perspective to a situation, when used correctly. One cannot be blind to their own strength and must throw themselves into the shoes of the others. It’s important to see how things can go wrong if certain actions are taken, or how the what is being discussed does not match the reality of what might happen, but equally as important is the fact that there is someone that can believe that there is a solution. Sometimes, I am my own weakness in this part, It’s rare that I say that something cannot be done and this can be both a gift or can be a disaster waiting to happen, it’s something I need to think about within myself.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly where my optimism has brought me over the years, but what I do know is that I see opportunities in almost everything I do just because of it. When I started my current occupation over 3 and a half years ago now (as an Intern Electrical Engineer), I knew that one day I would have the experience to be able to meet a major milestone and goal of mine, to work overseas. I never doubted myself for a moment in those 3 and a half years, I just knew that it was possible, that It can happen and just the “knowing” gave me confidence to (and this is the most important part) make little steps, goals and milestones towards making it happen. I think a lot of people think optimism gets you knowhere, that your dreams stay only as dreams in an optimists world and It’s true that we do dream a lot, but it is within our dreams, our bright lit visions of the world where our ideas begin and with the right mindset we can put things into action that ensure that our dreams truly become reality.

 

What in your own personality do you think has brought the most success in your life?

Thanks for reading ❤ Jason

 

Feature image – teamLab Borderless Light Museum, Tokyo, Japan taken on the 6th December 2018

The Science of Motivation

Each day we wake up. We experience life. The good and the bad. What is it that keeps us motivated to keep going? It is so often that times are tough, many of us wake up each morning dreading the work day ahead, I myself am included in that group from time to time. What really changes this is the way we think about it. You see, it’s a test of your mental strength to wake up, to see a situation, to flip your circumstance on it’s head.

We have to ask ourselves why we do what we do each day. If we can find an answer for that, then you can find motivation within it. Some of the greatest reasons for me to wake up each morning are relatable to why others do too, let me give you some reasons.

  • For the family. For those of you who know me, you’ll know that The Godfather is my favourite movie of all time. The movie represents something that is what makes us humans prosper in this world and that is the ability to work together, empathis and socialise with one another. Family does not only refer to blood, although in many a past this has been the case. But if we dig deeper, family actually means to protect the ones in which you love and care for most and as humans develop and the world becomes ever more connected, we inevitably remove old titles in the meaning of family like blood and relatives and instead adopt the word as it’s true meaning, one which sees every human as one enothers brothers and sisters. But we are still yet to reach the utopian society I envision in my mind, so family to me and to you means those in which you love and care for the most in your lives and that Is the first and foremost.
  • To change the world. One of my favourite songs, Michael Jackson’s – Man in the Mirror tells me something, that by looking within and changing ourselves we are inherently making the world a better place for all. We all contribute to the greater society in one way or another, no matter who you are or what you do. The work we do each day may seem invaluable or pointless in the whole scale of things, but without it, our society would not function. We have to see that for what it is, take a step back and see how our work each day makes a real impact on the world and people around us because I guarantee you can find that in anything that you do; which leads onto my next point.
  • To get you to where you want to be. In other words, what you are doing today, the things you learn, create and achieve will allow you to move to where your goals are in the future. I know the whole goals, passion and dreams thing is all the buzz these days but for humanity, or more specifically by the luck of being the 1% born here in the developed world, we have the luxury to even understand these terms, let alone try to seek them and to seek them is truly one of the most toughest but rewarding things you will ever find in life. So please, my friends, I beg of you, please seek and never give up, which follows onto our next point.
  • To do it for the little guy. To do it for those who don’t even have the chance. To do it for those in which are unable. This one is among one of the most heartfelt reasons why we must push on. You may not realise but by the luck of the universe, we have been gifted the ability to think and reflect, by the luck of where we are born we have been given the chance at life, the true freedoms that almost all of humanity has been working towards is here and now despite all the negativity that surrounds us about how things are not going right. So how can we take this for granted? how can we sit here and not do the best we can for those who are not so lucky, for those who have not been given a chance and for those who are unable. We must stay strong if not for anything, for them.
  • And finally, to be the best that you can be. There is no excuse to not doing the best that you can in everything that you do. Key words, the best that you can. Only you can truly know what that means and it’s in no comparison to anyone else. It should never ever be in comparison to anyone else as hard as that may be. But in a society that compares one another’s potention this is hardly something you can avoid. I’m telling you to avoid it nonetherless. Because it is truly a personal feat to know that you have achieved all you can on any given day.

A heartfelt topic, and for me it’s something I think about every single day. What motivates you to do what you do each day? I ask you to please ask yourself and do not fear the answer, instead, embrace it.

 

Stay strong and thanks for reading friends. Always.

Love, Jason.

 

Ticking Time – 3 Months

It’s October the 1st, a Monday. A Labour day.

It just so happens that today is no typical day. In the background, music to my ears, my niece of 3 runs around the family home laughing and playing with whatever she finds intriguing, that of which is everything. Her parents are busying themselves in the kitchen, preparing for a big day ahead to celebrate the 1st birthday of their second born, Alicia.

My part in all of this comes in later today, when the guests arrive and the chicken and chips are to be fried.

So for now, on the hammock I sit and write this memo to my present and near future self. It seems like an opportune time to do so, 3 months before I say see ya later to all of this, so much I cherish and will miss.

A heartfelt start to a post in which is to support me in the next 3 months through this incredible time of the year. I chose the presents to reflect upon the near future because this will allow me to remember the how and the why’s and align my thoughts and vision for where I see myself in the time coming. So without afurther ado, I begin with the first and foremost;

A Look at You – For those of you who have been the support in my life, I dedicate a time and space to look at you and in rememberance of you and what you mean to me. In the upcoming months, I will share our past and present annonymously in a post with a tagline that only you and I would understand. I can only hope that in doing so, you will know that you always have a place in my life and wherever we end up in the coming years, we can kick off with where we left off, the present in which we left off.

Pictures – In recent time’s I’ve underestimated the power of a photo, an image or a drawing to represent the ideas and emotions that we encounter in our lives. In my future posts, I intend to learn more about this, I hope to find and share pictures which we can all relate and accompany them with my thoughts and feelings.

Community – Where do we hope to find a sense of community in this vast world we live? It never came to thought until I realised I might actually be all on my own when I move away from home. For many I think this is incredibly daunting and one of the big reasons why we stay where we are, comfortable with what we have, content with all the love and support that already surrounds us. I’d like to think that I am also, but at the same time i’ve always had a longing to to stray from everything that is in the norm. If you know me well then you’d know that I have alrady invited you to come join me when I move, even if that chance was super super low; I guess, in a way I wish I could bring the community I already have with me wherever I go.

Preparations – The last of which I must make note of within the next few months is preparation. I won’t go too much into the details as mostly this is for my own reference so I will list some of the things I have to wrap my head around in the next 3 months. The job. My one way flight. A friends wedding in Bangladesh. My search for affordable accomodation. My selt taught cook-book and search for the inner chef. My health and wellbeing or lifestyle. Travel and social tools and apps. Managing my finances. Managing my finances again.

Vision

Imagine

Think far ahead of your time

30 Years

40 Years

50 Years

Where are you?

What do you see?

What gives your life purpose?

Who are the people that are still in your life?

What beliefs have you held onto and which have you left behind?

And the good habits that you have kept?

The morals that have shaped you?

Think about it deeply

Who are you really?

Imagine your life

Envision

I believe that if you can envision where you want to be in life 30, 40 or 50 years ahead of time, it will be achievable no matter what life’s circumstances. The little bumps in the road that you face today are truly nothing when pit against the possibilities of what you are after. As long as you keep that dream in mind and the choices you make are chosen with your heart and the feelings within your gut, you cannot fail.

For each an every one of us is guided by the universe and it’s signs. Some would call them our good omens or the Karma in which we balance our world, just like the Yin and Yang; others would swear the existence of our own guardian angels who protect us and guide us through this life. Whatever it may be, the sheer belief in the possibilities is what makes life worth living.

“When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it” – Paulo Coelho

 

Thanks for reading ❤ and keep on believing!

Following the Great Footsteps of History

There are certain places in the world that are unlike so many others. Many of which have been lost and hidden in time and history.

When I ask myself the questions which ponder at our worlds greatest histories, it often revolves around how they came to be, what was it that made it so incredible and how can I today recreate it. I speak of the great routes and paths of ancient and modern history, routes which have defined much of the worlds cities, societies and cultures that we see today and for centuries to come.

From the ancient Silk Road to the path Gandhi took on his peaceful Salt march, from Alexander the Great’s conquest to the Germans march across Belgium which sparked WW1, from the many pilgrimages millions take each year for their faith in religion and/or spirituality, these are the paths in which history has and continue to be written. These paths not only gave way to the trade of rare commodities, knowledge from travellers of far away cities, cultural and societal norms and beliefs; but they also gave way to much of the violence and conquest that we have seen in histories past.

To re-enact and follow in these great footsteps of history, I hope to seek a greater understanding of our past. Some of my major goals in life revolve around completing these journeys ahead, following the towns and cities, the cultures and stories in which they passed; because maybe, just maybe by seeking to understand our greatest histories can we begin to build and even greater future.

 

Thanks for reading ^__^

Some of these major routes I seek are listed here below, is there a famous route that changed the world that you would like to embark on one day?

  • The Silk Road – An ancient trade route connecting the East to West
  • The Gospel Trail – Following the footsteps of Jesus and his disciples
  • Alexander the Great – His journey of conquest
  • The Salt March – Led by Gandhi which in turn began a wide protest for Independence in India
  • The Inca Trail – A hiking trail to Machu Picchu in Peru, an ancient civilisation which thrived in the Peruvian mountains
  • The Eight Great Sites – The path of Buddha and his journey to enlightenment
  • The Hajj – The annual pilgrimage for millions of Muslims to the city of Mecca

A Journey to The States

Quick Facts

  • Status: Completed
  • Dates: 12th May 2018 to 26th May 2018
  • Objective: San Francisco to Las Vegas to Los Angeles to San Francisco
  • Route: Inland, mountainous & coastal
  • Approx Distance: 3000 Kilometers
  • Approx Time Driven: 50 Hours
  • Accommodation: 3 Nights Camping/ 5 Nights Car/ 6 Nights Hotel & Home

Insights

  • Camping is expensive
  • Camping has all amenities
  • State taxes, insurance, laws and regulations
  • You meet friends when you least expect it in places where you
  • We are not on this Earth to live or be alone. To be social with one another is core to our existence whether we consider ourselves introverted or otherwise.
  • Tackling your fears head first is the best way to overcome them (Safely ofcourse).
  • It’s more difficult than you think to foresee where you may end up in life, where you might settle and live, how your relationships will turn out and what career you might set your path upon.
  • It’s possible to live life or atleast short bursts of it purely based on spontaneity and trust in your gut feeling.
  • Always, always make time to take the scenic route, miss a turn onto the highway and drive off the beaten path. You’ll be surprised where it takes you.
  • Simply ask the locals what you should do when you get there, they’ll talk of places and things to do that you just can’t find anywhere else. TripAdvisor is one thing, but a true local is another!

Introduction

I guess there was a lot to expect; preconceptions of what it means to be in The States…

But before I get to that, we start at the very beginning. Flying the kangaroo half way across the Earth was absolutely wonderful, I don’t think I’ve ever been on a more comfortable flight. 14 hours was what it took, ten of those were spent sleeping and the other four eating and snacking. There is a certain pride and joy flying with our own airline, even when it is slightly more out of my own pocket, it still kind of feels like home but just at 35,000ft. Imagine that, your home suspended at 35000ft *giggles*. The food is also surprisingly good, in fact for plane food it is even great. I would suggest getting doubles when the scent of the mid-flight hot dog and mini burger arrive while you are dreaming away. I guess in retrospect, I am one of the lucky ones who can sleep on the plane, It’s one of the things I try not to take for granted and I often cite it as one of the greatest transferable skills on my CV. Anyways, I digress…which I do often when speaking of sleep and food.

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Before the landing. The city landscape is pretty on the eyes 🙂

Day 1

It kind of took me about 5 hours to get out of the airport, sort out my rental car, sim card and onto the road, three of which were spent waiting in lines, mostly for my rental car. That was an unexpected hump, already hours late to meet my friend Sabrina for lunch so she could show me around the city. Luckily she is awesome and forgives me for any harm done hehe. It’s the best thing to see a friendly face across the world, especially when you can use them as a free tour guide! hah, but you know I’d do the same for any friend coming to Sydney.

Straight off the bat is lunch at the Panda Express. Now I’m not usually one to talk about food in my blogs but if the food is somewhat iconic or a representation of culture then I should probably run it past. So I didn’t actually know it was a thing until I came back to Sydney and people asked me if I’d been to Panda Express! and so it was a coincidence. Pretty much the epitome of Asian food court delicacies. Yes, Asian food court food and it was actually pretty good, keeping in mind that it was food court food.

Moving on, the first thing to see was the Golden Gate bridge, from every angle it seems. It was nice both walking and driving across the bridge; beautifully draped in its red velvet. All I could think about was how tough it would be to repaint that thing, half true. I was thinking more of its history, it’s construction and engineering marvel. At the same time, the inescapable sad truth that something so beautiful is also known to be a place where so many lives are taken. It was a bittersweet moment but at least one spent in good company.

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Well, this is a pretty typical tourist must take photo

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It’s beautifully draped in red velvet

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Here you can see #KarlTheFog yeah, the San Francisco Fog has a name and Insta!

Lombard Street was our next stop. With the rooftop off we drove down the worlds crookedest road along with so many other tourists. It was actually really fun, the plants and flowers surrounding the area were pretty and with the backdrop of the city, what isn’t there to like.

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Lombard Street – World’s crookedest road

Now to the Fisherman’s Wharf, I was in search of that iconic sign and found it soon enough. A bit of an evening walk and catching up later we found ourselves having a nice warm dinner at a restaurant with live music to our ears. It was there where I found that most nice restaurants serve chowder as their entree, we don’t really have that in Australia or at least we don’t always call it that. Truth is I didn’t know what it was until an age I’m too embarrassed to admit. let’s just say I never really understood the “chowder” reference in The Simpsons.

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Thanks Sabrina! You’re awesome!

To end the first day of my trip we went to have some Asian dessert, wish I’d taken some photos because it was nice but I’m usually too busy getting started on the food…kind of reminds me of Meet Fresh!

Day 2

I took off from San Francisco quite early in the morning to get a good head start on the road as I’d suspected it would take me some time to reach Yosemite; little did I know that I was to stop almost a dozen times before reaching the National Park. From toilet breaks beside the road to country towns and gorgeous lookouts to turning back around after seeing a caravan parked beside a gas station with colours all around it…how could you not be curious right? As I approached the caravan I noticed a lady hanging some really colourful clothing along with some beef jerky. She was so welcoming when she saw me approach. We talked about how she and her husband had escaped the city back in the 80’s and had been living on the road ever since, dyeing shirts all sorts of patterns and colours, selling them to just have enough to keep going. Half an hour later she offers me one of these shirts as a gift, of course I couldn’t accept this without offering a small gesture of my own too. The gift was perfect, now I had something to wear over the EDC weekend!

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An after holiday photo as I was cleaning the closet. Ignore the butt, it’s all about the shirt here.

A few hours later and I’m at the entrance to the National Park. I’d got my hopes up when I saw the entrance, ready and eager to jump right into some hiking trails, too bad it was another hour or two till I actually reached the falls; mostly because again I’d stopped to enjoy the view countless more times. But have a look at that entrance, in spectacular American fashion!

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Entrance to the Yosemite National Park. Love the pine trees in the backdrop, you’ll see plenty more of those.

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Yosemite National Park – At First Glance

*INSERT* – YOSEMITE TIME LAPSE

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Much of the valley is scattered with things to do and see; something for everyone

I took my time to wander around the village once I’d finally managed to find parking. From the gift shops, to restaurants and campsites to their very own convenient store it really was more like a small busy tourist town rather than a remote place out in the mountains, nothing like it is in our peaceful and quiet Blue Mountains.

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I made my way down to my first hike, I thought I’d start with something pretty easy and so it was. Popular with families with young kids and babies in strollers, I should have known this would be a piece of cake. Nonetheless, the Yosemite Lower Falls walk was beautiful. I tend to get off track so I got drenched at the base of the waterfall, all for the selfie as I do.

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Yosemite Lower Falls – Rushing, gushing with all of natures might

*INSERT* – LOWER YOSEMITE FALLS

After my slow, very slow “hike” to the Lower falls it was already the late afternoon! I’d still wanted to hike the upper falls, totally behind schedule 😦 . About an hour up the Upper Falls i passed by a ranger who told me it would still be hours till I’d reach the top, by then it would be cold, dark and by the looks of it, rainy and wet! I’m somewhat glad I didn’t embark on that journey further up because the moment I got back to the base it poured rain like no tomorrow. Meanwhile, I was happily enjoying a pizza all to myself by a nice fireplace inside the restaurant. So warm and cosy!

That night I drove back outside the National Park (because they don’t let you camp just anywhere inside) and pitched my tent down by the river just outside of the Indian Flats campground. Not for the lack of trying, the campground wanted to charge me $60USD to sleep in my own tent inside the campground somewhere. Why do that when there’s a perfectly nice illegal camping spot down by the river…Some would argue with me, but I’m poor, rebellious, daring and a bit spontaneous in that way. So that night I slept with a knife under my pillow just in case a bear did decide to come strolling into my camp. lol.

Day 3 –

I survived my first night camping and it was absolutely freezing cold! I should have known better than to camp at the bottom of the valley where the wind gushes by and the river water flows with all the might of nature…let’s just say that’s a lesson learned. I was up really early just as the sun came up to make the most of the day. I wanted to go on a real nice hike, spend all day up there in the mountains and so I did, it was to be the longest hike I’d ever attempted and completed. It all began here, at the entrance of the Mist Trail.

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And it begins! Entrance to the Mist Trail.

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Squirrels are so cuteeeeee!! ❤

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Chill

It was still early in the morning as I made my way up the trail. It couldn’t have been later than 7am when I came across this view. I think it’s beautiful the way shadows climb up the rocky faces of mountains. In the shadows it drops below 10 degrees but out in the open sun it could be easily triple that, and when making your way up the trail means that you get one or the other for a few minutes at a time you really don’t know what to take off or put on. A chill runs through your spine every time you hide behind the rock face and end up with a view like this.

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You can hear and see it beyond the shadows…

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And here is is, the Vernal Falls

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Behind me, a rainbow perfectly captures the figure. The Mist was just impossible to avoid on my lens…

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And then ofcourse, there’s me awkwardly asking someone to take my picture; turned out pretty okay! 🙂

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Once I got to the top, I realised that the awe had not ended yet! You must see the full panorama! 🙂

Now at the top I thought it would be a good time for lunch. Before I’d even unpacked my sandwiches, fruit and snacks, a squirrel found me, no doubt looking at my fancy trail mix!

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Sadly I’d already eaten my sandwiches before I took this photo

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He’s enjoying the view with me

So that was it, time to leave my newfound friend alone. Next stop, Nevada falls, another 3 kilometres up ahead. It was here where I’d bumped into two sisters who, like me had lost the main path! And who couldn’t with forests like this below. At one point I’d followed a path that led me right back to where I began, talk about Deja Vu! The sisters, from Cleveland (just in case I ever visit) were headed the same way. We would soon bump into each other a dozen times with me nudging them to continue along the Panorama trail and down the 4-mile track! Well worth it and an absolute great company to have met on the hike.

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Massive log in the way? let’s cut our way through it

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Looking down

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The Nevada falls was just ahead…and then the clouds came rolling in…

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Spying on the Nevada Falls…

Much of the next 14 km can be summarised by one photo below. It felt like I was always following a path around the mountain, never being able to see what was just that bit further ahead. What you could see though, was the Half Dome almost throughout the trail, It’s as if no matter how far you walked, the Half Dome and it’s mountains never moved, never shifted away from your sight.

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Panorama Trail…

At the end of the trail was an incredible lookout where most people had not hiked to get up, but instead made their way by car or bus. I could have saved myself 14 km’s of mountainous death if I had taken that option and as I stumbled past all the tourists who took the easy way up, I could see why.

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Apart from the impending weather doom, can you spot the difference?

But the hike had yet ended, as the clouds rolled in I kept my fingers crossed for the 4-mile hike back down. It was quite amazing and just my luck that just as I reached the base the rain poured in like none other.

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Anddddd more squirrels!

So with much relief and good company from the sisters, we were back down on the valley camp. We had dinner at one of lodges where they served a buffet / food court like meal which was pretty simple yet interesting. We said our goodbyes and hoped to visit each other across the world one day.

That evening I continued the journey back outside the National Park and towards the one and only Viva Las Vegas. On my way out I could not help but stop at what would be the last of about a dozen amazing lookouts at my time here in Yosemite and wow was it an absolutely incredible farewell. Farewell Yosemite, but sure not a goodbye ❤

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One last look…

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The way out…

That night I drove into the sunset, swirling and twirling through the mountains and soon found refuge by a lookout and so took up camp. I sat there for such a length of time that I could not tell, but because the view was something that I could not explain. It was with moments like this that make me wonder why I am out here, all on my own and so far from home; moments like this that make me more sure than ever that I am heading in the right direction. Because so often do I feel that I am out of place, that the world is trying to make me someone I am not; it is so often that I feel there exists a place where I belong and i’ts so close, within a hearts reach.

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Night 3 – Sunset Horizon

Day 4

So it was on Day 4 that I continued my way through the mountains. The drive down and back up these mountains was a lot longer than I’d expected, the twists and turns felt like they’d never end and what looks like 20km on google maps is more like 50kms worth of twists and turns. As fun as they were though, it pushed my timetable a bit back and so later on I would miss my chance to see the beauty of Death Valley (hot desert and more hot desert from what I’ve heard).

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The unexpected mountain battles

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The never ending twisty turnies

The drive, however was gorgeous and once again in my good old fashion I can’t help but stop at the many lookouts along the way.

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INSERT VIDEO OF ME DRIVING

The next stop was Kings Canyon which was supposed to be on my way out of all these national parks but turned out to be a whole day trip. The one thing I really wanted to see was the largest tree in the world known as the “General Sherman”; a giant sequiola. If you’re curious as to what they mean by the largest tree in the world, it’s measured by total volume, so it may not be the tallest or widest, but it’s combination of the two does make it so.

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Entering Kings Canyon – Don’t mind the smudges, they’re just the dozens of bugs that decided to chill on my windscreen

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Onto the valley floor

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Perspective

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Sequioas, giant sequioas everywere

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Backpack vs Sequioa trunk

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And then there was me and the Sherms

To be honest, the tree was big, but not as big as I’d imagined. I’m not sure why but when I think of a big tree I’d like to think I could look up and not see the top, that above me would be something of a stalk into the sky. Now, I know what you’re about to say, this isn’t some Jack in the Beanstalk or Avatar movie, this is real life; well let me tell you, real life is underwhelming sometimes then *sad face*. But nonetherless the trip here was wonderful and the short hike was full of surprises, among some of them was overhearing tourists be in awe of the tree, one of them sounded just like this when they saw it “aauuuuhhh zes zes, zat is big tree”, I couldnt help but giggle. Then you had others who tried taking photos from perspective, trying to hold the trunk between their fingers or leaning against it from an angle that made them look as tall as the tree, this was fun to watch as I sat there admiring the nature around me.

A short drive later and I was met with some construction work up ahead, they were repairing some of the tight bends around the mountains edge that must have collapsed recently. It was quite a long wait, so long that I turned off the car, opened up the roof and had lunch sitting on top of the car whilst everyone watched behind me.

*INSERT VIDEO OF HAVING LUNCH ON TOP OF CAR*

Just like that, I was out of the mountains and the colours of the landscapes changed dramatically.

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Green – One last look

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Yellow – fields of orange plantations

From green to yellow. It was so sudden and to be honest, i hadn’t even noticed the scenery change until i looked twice. Driving is sometime’s like that, especially longer journeys. The landscapes all blend into one long road of ash and pavement and not until you look for a second time do you really notice your surroundings.

Sun was dawning now and a yellow glow in the distance complimented the earth. Driving into it, i was met with machines, hundreds upon hundreds of machines drilling into the earth. It’s hard to explain the sounds and feelings that emcompass you as you sit there watching, watching them turn and twist, like the drinking bird that never stops drinking and sucking from the earth. It’s hard to believe that this is what society is based upon and every ounce of your being tells you that this is somehow not right, that this is very wrong and yet this is how it is.

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The oil rigs

*INSERT VIDEO OF MACHINES*

I stopped by a Denny’s for dinner. Classic American fast food described simpley as large in proportion, cheesy, meaty and fatty!

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Denny’s Diner

That night, i drove into the sunset and took my rest by the side of Highway 15, just hours from the lights of Vegas.

Day 5

The early morning drive was met with a really cool sight. Right in the middle of the Mojave Desert i drove past the Ivanpah solar thermal plant. Couldn’t help but stop by the side and take a few photos of this awesome engineering project, just one of a few i would plan on seeing today!

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The Ivanpah Solar Thermal Plant

Next stop, Walmart! I had to go to atleast one while i was here right? do they really sell guns? is the pharmaceuticals aisle larger than the sweets? nope, but it was pretty big!

Hoover Dam. I was here, now this was truly an incredible marvel of engineering! Sweltering hot outside  though as i made my way from the car park to the tourist centre taking plenty of photo’s, enjoying the view and reading all about the project.

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
Sweltering hot!

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My tanned face

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
The Hoover Dam ❤ WOW

After a few hours at the dam, it was time to head out towards the Grand Canyon! This was no simple feat, over 4 hours of  driving in the desert, with literally nothing to see and nothing to do inbetween can drive someone crazy! You know those cartoons of the desert landscape where you see the dry round shrubs bounching from one side of the screen to the other? well, that’s real, there really are shrubs bouncing across the road on these desert highways!

I spent a lot of time walking the various tracks of the canyon on my own. It has a certain grandness where you’d just like to be alone in the peace and quiet. There’s not much else to be said about the Grand Canyon as the photos speak for themselves. Absolute wonder.

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
Tourists

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Okay, you win, it really is pretty grand

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The photo doesn’t do the red rocks justice

Another 4 hours of driving back into Vegas had me in a dazzle. From sunset to city rise i could see in the same distance as i headed into the city!

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
Sunset heading into Vegas

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
City lights rise

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
Vegas Strip

That night i met up with friends, enjoyed a yummy In-n-out burger and retired the night at The Luxor!

Maker:0x4c,Date:2017-10-24,Ver:4,Lens:Kan03,Act:Lar01,E-Y
The Luxor

Sadly, I’d never spent the time to finish this blog post 😥 Plenty of stories and photos to tell of the other half of the time I was out here but maybe they will be told another time.

Thanks for reading my friends ❤

Goals of 2018 – Seeking Introversion

When I think about my goals and where I want to be at the end of this year, I tend to break them up into sections which define the person that I am today. These sections can be things such as my goals for work, goals for lifestyle and my goals for learning this year. At it’s core though and most importantly, everything that defines who you are should always be in constant change, there is always room for improvement.

“The only constant in life is change” – Heraclitus

This is also deeply in line with the Buddhist thought that everything in life changes and that we must acknowledge and accept that for what it is. But that’s a topic for another day.

Today, I lay out my biggest ambitions for this big year ahead. I will in some ways keep it brief to allow movement and flow between one another. How I achieve these goals this year is another question and that is one where only I can deeply understand. For those of you who find it difficult to define the goals in your life or if you find my goals interesting, let me know and let’s have a chat, it would be a pleasure for me to hear about what gets you excited about life and what drives you day to day.

Every year I like to define my goals by an overarching line, one that I feel reflects the entirety of what I wish to accomplish. This year is defined as the title suggests; Seeking Introversion. To elaborate, I have always and will always be an introvert at heart. A few years ago, I sought to challenge that fact. It was hard for me to believe that just because of who I am, I could not love to talk to everyone, to socialise and feel energised, inspired and excited to do so. It is also known that extroverts are generally more successful in life, and it makes sense. In a world of ever growing globalisation and connectivity, there has been no other time in history that we are talking, socialising and connecting to one another more and more. Extroverts are highly regarded to do this well. Sadly, even with all the strengths that introverts can bring to the table, it is getting ever tougher for them to shine. For me this was really really hard at first, to come out of my “shell” as to say but over the years I have been able to overcome this only because of the amazing people I have met along the way and the incredible organisations that provide the means for me to grow! A few years later and here I am. I think it’s really important for me not to forget who I was and who I am inside; so this year I seek to look within instead of outside, I truly believe that there is strength to be found within the somewhat lost introvert inside of me and my goals will reflect that this year.

  1. Secure the job position overseas & prepare to make the move
  2. Continue learning the technical aspects of my work and continuing to manage larger projects of my own.
  3. Can play atleast 2 complex songs on the piano that require both hands, all while reading the music notes and singing.
  4. Reading goals – 25 Books & 12 NG Magazines by the end of 2018
  5. Writing goals – Minimum 1 public blog post per month & 1 private post per month
  6. 7 day Solo Road trip around Tasmania
  7. Complete a minimum of 3 courses including the current “Learning how to Learn” course on Coursea.
  8. Research the basics of philosophical ideas and practices such as Maslow’s Hierarchical of Needs, Roman stoicism, Yin & Yang, Introspection and ideas such as Marxism and capitalism.
  9. Complete the BIM model of the new house including furniture and special features
  10. Increase the number of lucid dreams attained to a minimum of 10. Continue to write in the dream journal with a minimum of 1 per week. Practice WILD method. Increase presence on Dreamviews.
  11. Continue the practice of Buddhist Meditation for mindfulness (the body, feelings, mind states and mental objects). learn about the concepts of enlightenment and nirvana.

This is the first time I have ever taken note of my goals so I am sorry (to myself) if they are all over the place, no doubt I’ve missed some here and there. In the meantime, I always have a to-do and to-learn list which is updated on a daily basis on Google Keep (which is so cool!), I totally recommend it.

 

Thanks for reading!

Beep beep Bop Bop

 

 

 

 

The Great Australian Road Trip – In The Beginning at Ground ZERO

It has always been one of my greatest endeavours to complete a road trip around the coast of Australia. After all, Australia is my home and what is a better way to understand more about your home but to travel around it yourself.

This long-term goal will be likely split into 6 parts (as far as I can foresee right now).

  • Part 1 – Sydney > Melbourne > Adelaide (Completed Jan 2017)
  • Part 2 – Sydney > Tasmania (Expected Completion sometime late 2017)
  • Part 3 – Adelaide > Perth (Expected Completion sometime 2018)
  • Part 4 – Perth > Darwin
  • Part 5 – Darwin > Cairns
  • Part 6 –  Sydney > Brisbane > Cairns

Rules of engagement: 

  • All trips taken will be strictly by road only and be using flights as a means to arrive at the beginning or end of the trip.
  • Camping on beaches and grounds will be the number one option when on the road with the exception of when in major cities.
  • Self-made / self-cooked food (including by campfire) where possible unless tasting a local cuisine or delicacy.
  • Plan only the major routes and attractions and plan for worst case scenarios. Leave the rest to intuition and fate.
  • Meet locals wherever possible and ask them for knowledge of local things to do and see. Embrace all cultures, indigenous or otherwise with respect and an eagerness to learn and contribute.

Overcoming my Fears

Biggest fears for this trip include the following – Snakes, spiders, drop bears….well pretty much every dangerous animal that might stalk me in the middle of the night. The water level rising up to my tent in the middle of the night making bringing my tent into the ocean floating. Breaaaakkkkkdowwwnnssss as in mechanically for my car, not mentally, hopefully not mentally. Sadly hitting animals on the road :'(. Obviously crazy people!. Picking up hitchhiker’s (although I maybe shouldn’t hmm i don’t know how I feel about this yet, probably too risky as I am alone). I fear the loneliness might get to me. The looonnngggggg drive, possibly leading to fatigue. Monsters in the dark, including ghosts and aliens and the whole paranormal and supernatural *shivers*…(come on Jason you’re not 5 anymore harden up).

Update Jan 2017: So far I have overcome all of those fears and none of them has stopped me on my track! Shows you how much fears actually play a part in your life when you just jump over them.

 

 

Just Follow Your Dreams, They Said.

We’ve all heard it before. It’s one of the most common sayings and in today’s age it is more possible than ever to do. But you quickly come to the realisation that it’s not all about following your dreams; that’s easy, but finding it; that’s the hard part.

The saying serves a good purpose but it assumes that everyone knows what they want to do in life. It assumes that we have all unlocked the box that says hey you over there, yes you, this is what you want to do in life, now go and follow it! The truth is that very few of us know what we really want to do in our short time on this Earth. We go with the flow of the same society that we have been raised and in that flow we forget to stop and think deeply about why we do what we do each day. We forget to seek.

I’ve always liked the idea that inherently we are all here for a greater purpose. That each and every one of us are born with a powerful and unique passion burning inside of us. But in all our greatness, we forget to seek out this purpose.

In every child inside of us, we had a dream. As far off that might sound now at some point of time we all wanted to be something, and it was always something good. I wanted to be an astronaut. Maybe you wanted to grow up to be a firefighter, a police officer, a teacher, singer or dancer; we all had something. I dare say that, that is a good starting point to finding out what your dreams are. I also dare say that to seek what we do not know we must move outside of what we do know, we must challenge our preconceptions, we must try things we have never tried, we must face the fears that once held us back.

So to conclude, don’t worry about following your dreams; that’s easy. Worry about finding out how to unlock dreams that are already within; that’s the hard part.

Thanks for reading ❤

This post was a tough one to write about but I think I got the message through. I hope we all move forward in life knowing that what we are doing now is what we are and have always meant to do.

Stop. Pause. Freeze.

Stop. Pause. Freeze the moment in time. Today is not just another day. Nor was the one before it. Nor will tomorrow be…just another day. Make each and every day beautiful in its own right, make it something different. We often get caught up in so much of what we do in life. If you do the same thing long enough, it becomes a constant in a forever changing world. It’s important to remember that change is not our enemy, that we should not be afraid of it. Change allows us to grow and learn, in often tough and stressful times we conquer and get back up stronger than before.

I’d like you to think for a moment about what your typical day is like, then think about what the typical week looks like, then month and even years! If it’s all too common, i want you to try something for me…i want you to take a left instead of the usual right when walking down to the station platform. Sit on the grass instead of that same old bench when you go out for lunch. Go get that book you’ve always wanted to read and make a pact to read a chapter a day. Call up some old friends of yours, plan lunch and dinner dates! Give it a try, i promise you won’t regret. 🙂

P.S. “Cover Photo” Today (10th February 2017), I decided to be in the city an hour before work. This was my pause in time. This is what I saw.

The Shipwrecked Soul

“The Shipwrecked Soul”

Beware the captain
That sails only on smooth waters;
That drops anchor only in safe harbours;
That lets aboard only familiar faces;
That will not brook strong winds or stormy weather;

Whose life, well lived, is a deadly comfort–
Never to be dashed against the rocks of passion
Never to be dismembered on the shores of love.

Yet a life so well lived it hides a shipwrecked soul.

I have been such a captain

But now I set out on unknown seas

With sails full open
Guided only by whispers in the wind
By images in white capped waves;
By patterns in the flight of birds;
And by bits of news from distant ports;

In search of that soul survivor,
The almost forgotten fragments of Self
That shall heal the world as the world heals me.

– Nick LeForce

Following The Compass

We tend to plan things ahead and look into the reaches of the possibilities that lay ahead of us. But how we get there is another question of its own. Sometimes we choose to follow decisions which are based on practicality, because it tells us the logical path to where we want to be. Maybe it’s the decision to choose that subject in high school or to take that stable job because it’s the safe step towards your dream one. But i challenge you to do something, something that i am starting to do myself;

Leave your map behind and follow your compass.

A map is great if you want to go where people have been before. A compass, even though uncertain and unpredictable, will cause you to pave new paths, and lead you to unexpected and amazing places. Ultimately, you will find yourself in the mistakes you make and the shortcuts you design. So leave your map behind and let your compass lead the way.

Firsts

The first word. The first sentence. The first paragraph.

These will never become any easier and if you ask me, it’s not easy now. I don’t consider myself a writer, at least not well enough to express myself creatively, as much as I do wish to. It’s one of the main reasons for starting this blog actually. There isn’t much I don’t challenge myself to do in this short lifetime I have been given, most of which are the life skills that will always stay with me wherever I go. Writing is one of them.

Growing up, reading and writing was never cool. You were a nerd if you read too much, an outcast if you enjoyed anything from novels to poems and art. It’s one of my biggest regrets now that I look back, and i’m not usually one to regret anything in life. I remember how back in much younger years I used to really enjoy poems, especially those of which that rhymed. Why did we ever stop reading and writing them? Or was I just blinded by societies grasp to follow what was cool at the time? I guess it doesn’t matter any more as time goes by, all that really matters is that to this day I still enjoy them with my Green Eggs and Ham.

For now I place down a marker, something to remind me that this is where I began, that this is the place of origin, my first post. So here’s to many more and hopefully, one day ill be a great writer of my own.

See you on the other side, my friends.