YOU taught me

Throughout life, there are people who come into your life and change you.

It’s often that these people never know how much they’ve impacted on your life, because to them they are just being themselves; but to you, they are the heroes in your story. They are the ones who make us a better person inside and out, who teach us something valuable that we often look back upon in times of uncertainty and ambiguity. These people are our heroes, our guardian angels that come into our lives as swiftly as they leave but have imprinted a part of themselves in you for a lifetime.

Take notice of them. Remember them. Choose to be better because of them.

For those whom have changed my life, this is for you and this is what you have taught me.

CM – If you’re not going to do it, then no one will is the vibe you gave off when I was around you. The more I go through life, the more I realise how true this is. It’s rare to find people who are willing to take charge of everything they do, those are the people who actually move things along because they absolutely hate how slow things can move in almost all aspects of their life. They’re not satisfied with the status quo, that things have always been done this way because to them that was is incredibly inefficient and slow. You are one of those and you get things done because you do them. Sometimes you say that it’s because no one else can do it (who knows, maybe your right, or maybe a bit more leadership will help those whom struggle do better? not sure). But the teaching is there, that if you want to change something, if you want to get things moving, get things to the way you like it, sometimes you just have to take it in the chin and do it yourself. Thanks for showing me this CM.

IP – Calm, even when the world around you is burning to the ground. Stoic is what people would call you even if you didn’t know it. Over the years I’ve been around you, I’ve enjoyed one aspect more than any other, to observe you (in a humorous way not creepy ha!). I find it fascinating how put together your sentences are, you talk slowly but very succinctly in an easy to understand, easy to follow manner and in such that everyone in the room knows that we’re all moving towards the same goal. This isn’t just in the normal day to day, it’s during times of incredible stress and hardship that it shines the most because you don’t change, you still have the same, calm, relaxed, “everything will be okay” vibe going about you. Wish I could do the same and I do try, but thank you for showing me how it’s done.

JB – You’re the JB so you know who you are without introduction. You are a great friend, infinitely more caring of others than people can see at first. Maybe it’s because that inner circle of yours is really the only people you care about and everyone else can get lost is probably what you would say. You show you care by doing the exact opposite, it took me some time to realise this but I look back now and everything we’ve ever done is a million times more hilarious and fun. Making us do ridiculous things by egging us on and threatening us if we don’t has always made for a funny but scary experience; In the end there’s always a stupid story to tell, someone making a fool out of ourselves only to have you make sure we get home safe and sound. You are a true friend and JB, thank you for that.

JB No.2 – “Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe” by Abraham Lincoln. You told me this on one sunny day when I was young and eager to learn. I’d never at the time managed any projects on my own but when I finally got around to it, this quote just kept coming to mind and of course, you, the person who reminded me of it. I’ve extended this further than work but into my own life because come to think about it, how often do we actually sit down and plan our actions towards the goals we set ourselves? not nearly enough I would say. With every project I lead, every goal and dream I have, I plan now more than ever, I leave room for spontaneity, but don’t allow any spontaneity to push me off track. Thank you for teaching me that planning is the path to success JB.

KC – HOW ARE YOU? is pretty much the most common statement we have both said to each other. Seriously, I’m pretty sure we both don’t actually mean it because I hope things are doing shit without me back home; yes, I just want you to miss having me around. hahaha. In all seriousness though, you are a good mate, you’ve taught me what the most sociable butterfly looks like and that’s you man. You’re a wildflower, you grow a bit of your wild self in every person you meet and I think that’s pretty awesome. You actually care a lot about people and you definitely know how to show it. This is one of the most important lessons that you have taught me, how to show that you care. We text each other nonsensical texts on most days that consists of one liners such as “WAKE UP” “GO HOME” “OI” ” I HOPE YOU DIE FROM ALCOHOL POISONING” and the reply’s not too dissimilar. For readers, please don’t read too much into this but all I have to say to you KC is cheers mate, take good care of yourself and MY, and don’t fuck up, but if you do, I’ll catch you.

KK – A kind, loving and forgiving heart is the gift that you have. You taught me how to take care of myself, how we shouldn’t be so harsh to ourselves when things don’t work out the way we want it to. You taught me that there will always be people around you who are experiencing or have experienced similar emotions that you are feeling at this moment and together, you can get through anything life throws at you. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help. Many years ago, we reached out to each other and helped each other get through some of the toughest times of our lives and there’s nothing more I can say but thank you. We will always be great friends because of that. We only have to look at how far we’ve come since then to realise what felt like a dead end in our path was only a small hump in the road of life!

PS – maaatteee, I’m going to miss having you around but you know what, everything happens for a reason right and we’ll make the most of whatever comes our way. I’ve never seen sombody who loves music as much as you do. How are you still alive right now with all those late nights at pubs and clubs watching gigs till the am’s. It’s a big part of your life and I can see it, it shines out of you like an eminating glow. You’ve taught me how easy it is for ones passion to shine right through them and feel like it’s ovewhelming and even influencing yourself. The power to truly be passionate about something is what I seek for as well, it’s a question I’ve asked myself for many years. I think I’ve found some of it and I can only hope that it eminates from me as much as I can see music does for you!

WT – High energy! is what I can say about you. It’s quite incredible to watch actually. You are at your highest of highs when you are surrouded by good friends and good music and I think that’s where you shine. Even for someone like me, who can also have quite high energy, you manage to top that and show me how exciting it can be to get to know other people. We don’t know each other as well as we’d both like to but that will change soon. What I do know is that althought in person we always see the highest of highs in you, when you’re alone, it becomes your lowest of lowes. It’s something you’ve mentioned to me before and maybe in the next few months, it’s something I can show you too, how to be comfortable in your own shoes when all you have is yourself.

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! 🙂
  8. 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. The peace and joy it often brought me when I practised these and even today, I still meditate, only the meditation that I have learned to embed into my life is done throughout the day in small 5 minute chunks. If you spend enough time with me you sometimes notice I pause and go all quiet, those are moments of clarity of mind and deep thought. I do want to try something new though, I’d like to attend some regular meditation classes and I do want to recall more dreams and have more lucid dreams than I do now. Let’s set a goal of joining at least 5 meditation sessions and writing at least 6 dreams this year in this blog.

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.

The Little but BIG Things In Life – Appreciation List

  1. THANK YOU for giving me the strength to be alone and be okay with that. To find and fall in love with who I am, to be my own self in a world that can sometimes feel like it’s tearing you apart.
  2. THANK YOU mum for being there for me, always. For always having the most beautiful smile in the world. Mum, I want you to know that when you’re happy, the world lights up and there is nothing but happiness in this world.
  3. THANK YOU dad for being the biggest and most incredible role model that any son could have ever hoped for. Dad, I want you to know that you are my inspiration in this world, your strength and fortitude, bravery and persistence to make a better life for you and your family has taught me everything I know about what it means to raise a family; no doubt this will be passed on to many generations to come.
  4. THANK YOU Michael, my older brother. You are the smartest person I know, most of the time. You give advice that is often sound and responsible and has always kept me on the right path in life. You’re the first person I go to when I seek guidance, without you, my life would not have the structure, the building blocks it does today and I can only hope that I continue to listen and take in your knowledge.
  5. THANK YOU Ken, my youngest brother. You have taught me that everyone is on a different path to success, that there is not one but an infinite number of ways that one can reach success. I know us older brothers sometimes can seem to have expectations that are not always easy to achieve; you shouldn’t have to live up to them because you are on your own path in life and I realise that now. Just know that we have always wanted the best for you and are here to support any decision you make.
  6. THANK YOU Jasie, my dear sister in Law. Far more than anyone else in the world, you have taught me to welcome others with the biggest open arms. Our family is incredibly lucky to have and welcome you into our home. I thank you so much for your patience and acceptance of who we are. I know that we are not always perfect, myself especially but know that we will always be here for you and the little ones.
  7. THANK YOU little Jasmine and Alicia, oh my two little beautiful nieces! You two are an absolute bundle of joy! The hardest question I’ve had to answer since moving abroad was what will I miss the most about home and the answer is not what, but who and it’s you two. It saddens me greatly that I am not there to see you grow up, running around the family house chasing each others tails. I hope that you will remember your old uncle Jason, known for his bravery to chase his dreams, to jump into the unknown and explore the wild corners of the world. I promise to bring you wild gifts and stories from distant lands, even dragons if he ever comes across one!
  8. THANK YOU so very much, my best friend. You taught me the true meaning of what that meant and it only took two decades to meet you; but oh my am I glad we finally did! You’re a big part of my life and a big reason why I can stand tall and not be afraid. I’ve always got your back and you’ve got mine, a great day? Tell me about it while I cheer you on, a really bad day? I’ll be here to listen! And ofcourse by the end have you smiling away 🙂 stay strong, keep being you because you are awesome!
  9. THANK YOU teddy Beary for being there from the start. For being the light in the darkness, for fighting off the monsters under the bed and being the comfort I needed when I was young, scared and weak; so that now I have become none other than the protector.
  10. THANK YOU for the sun and warmth that comes each but not every day. It reminds me that life is not all sunshine and blue skies, but instead it’s how you overcome the grey to see the light of another day.
  11. THANK YOU for my good health! I know I don’t always appreciate it as much as I should, but I know my physical body is strong and in good health, that it can take me to places and move mountains at my call.
  12. THANK YOU to those of you who keep in touch even when I am so far away, even when it’s been so long since we last spoke. The little things such as “how are you” keep me going knowing people out there do care about me just as I do for them.
  13. THANK YOU for my absolute LOVE to bring people together. I find the most happiness when I am connecting people, when I am bridging the gap between you and me, between you and him and between him and her. This is because I truly believe in the power of the mutual connections that we give each other, it is one of the few things that really matter on our short time on this Earth. This love to bring people together has made me feel loved by many, has helped me build real heart filled relationships with those around me and simply has helped me become so content with the life I have been given. If there is ever a goal in life I cherish more than anything, it is that I continue to pass on the bright light that I have been given by you and for that I thank you from the bottom of my heart.
  14. THANK YOU to all those who post recipes online whether that’s on my favourite Subtle Asian Cooking page, blogs or websites. They give a big newbie like me hope to cook things that I never thought I could of, to enjoy the food i make and most importantly to know what’s going into everything i make and eat.
  15. THANK YOU to the world wide web! How crazy does it sound to know that was a time when the world wasn’t even near as connected as it is today. Not only are we more connected to each other socially but more importantly, connected by information. This is to ensure I never take for granted how easy it is for me to satisfy my thirst for knowledge, more open to me than 99.999% of humans ever been in the past.
  16. THANK YOU to the sound of music. You move me. You have always moved my body and heart, made me feel emotions that I could not describe but only feel. Music really is the universal language that connects us all, vibrating strings is what we are made of and vibrating strings is what we are all changed by. I am glad that we have ears to listen, hearts to feel and our bodies to move along with it.
  17. THANK YOU to those who choose to smile. I often get caught up in the movements of the day to notice that I haven’t stopped to enjoy the moment, the life each day that I have been given. But you, stranger, with your smile remind me. You remind me of the good that is in the world, to not get sucked up in the pattern, the mindless moving. You remind me to smile back and give a smile once again to another stranger.
  18. THANK YOU for listening. To those who listen with their hearts to you and mean nothing but the best for you. I know who you are because I know how you have made me feel, absolutely and undoubtedly supported through the ups and downs of my life. Without you I would be an empty shell, cast out into the ocean with no one to pick me up and listen to my tune. We all need heroes in our life, we all need that wind beneath our wings that allows us to fly and soar above the clouds; so I hope you know that it is you who has made it all possible.
  19. THANK YOU to my outbound friends. Those of you who are eagerly finding adventure beyond the horizons of what you see and crossing borders to places you’d never thought you’d find yourself. It is you I seek out most because when I see you doing this; I want to join you. Often I will and I do, the stories we share with one another are unforgettable and the bonds we make are unbreakable because one of the things I do know is that friends who travel together, stay together.
  20. THANK YOU for giving me the chance to truly be proud of the work I do, of the projects that come to life in front of my eyes. Not often enough do I pause to remember that I and with the help of many others, change the shape of the landscapes we design. That we design and build things on this Earth that will stay for lifetimes past; places where people come together and bring joy and love to one another! That is much to be proud of and I am thankful to remember this each and every day.
  21. THANK YOU for my forever curious and wandering mind. You keep my on my toes with new questions and new discoveries each and every day. You keep track of my sensors and question the things I see, the scents that I smell, the taste that I taste, the sounds that I hear and the feeling of what It is I touch. Maybe more importantly, you make me think about the way I think and wonder about how it is to feel about the way I feel.
  22. THANK YOU for allowing me to give meaning even to the most mundane of things. Today I found great meaning in even the letters of the Alphabet. The T for Tau for example, used as a symbol for life and ressurection in ancient times was also used by the Greeks to symbolise death. Soon after, in biblical times it connected to the cross of Jesus. I realised that even the most simplest of things we take for granted weave across the history of time and space. There is meaning all around us, it is only for us to open our eyes and see. So beautiful.
  23. THANK YOU for the high life energy. One of the most profound things I have learnt about myself over the years is what makes me want to move. In moving I mean to excitedly jump for joy, to enthusiastically wave my hands up in the air and to sing on top of my lungs. It made me realise that it’s not something you’re born into, but it’s something that can be found and the secret is simple, to do something you love. When I do something I love, the energy I put into it feels like my all plus an extra battery pack to top it off. So, I think you for helping me find my high life energy.
  24. THANK YOU for my smile. I never knew the power of a smile until others made me smile with theirs. It’s contagious! Often, people say that I am that person who is always smiling, I’d like to think it’s because of the storyteller in my mind. The vivid imagination that is weaved by the subjects that it finds in everything. But also, I smile because I know it can make you smile too, it can brighten up somebody’s day even for a little moment so I think you for giving me the big bright smile I have (and the wrinkles that come with it!). P.S. that’s why the sunflower is my favourite flower, it makes people smile just by looking at those beautiful golden petals.
  25. THANK YOU for the music community during these times of incredible isolation (2020). Whilst we are more isolated than ever, the strength of communities like these to shift onto the virtual world has been amazing giving a sense of unity, support and love from afar. DQ 1 @ home is a great example of this, uniting the community through Zoom chat where we can all see each other and communicate over chat whilst we enjoy an event that would have been in person. There have been many more great examples of this with individual artists hosting live streams where fans can come together for the love of something common. This sense of community gives me a sense of hope that one day we will return to normal and we will be reunited once again.

As time goes on, this list will continue to grow, to forever be a reminder of how much good there is in this world and to that, I THANK YOU for being the biggest and most important part of it ❤ Love, Jason.

Parents

“I’ve always believed that your parents want the best for you, but at the same time, they don’t always know what that is. As much heartache as it may cause, it’s about standing up for your beliefs, who you are and what you want in life, instead of just being what they would like you to be. They will, in time see that you are your own person, that you have and always will honestly and wholeheartedly take in consideration the advice they give; but ultimately make your own path In life. When they see this, and it will take time, they will not only be proud of who you have become (a strong, independent individual), but you will also have grown to be someone you are proud of, incorporating some of your parents greatest strengths and teachings along with your very own and where your heart lies.”

Jason Li

Feature image – Graduation Day. The University of Technology, Sydney, Australia. Taken on the 9th of May 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 ❤

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.

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

The First Taste of Freedom

I still remember the first day I got my car.

I had not even received my red’s yet so without someone to watch me, I wasn’t able to drive. How crazy to come home from school each day by bus watching my car sit there for weeks on end, just admiring from afar. I thought about how cool it would be to drive my friends around, to visit their homes and play games all day and to drive faster than my dad would normally let me around corners.

But I had no idea back then how much something so simple, so common would shape who I am today. It was with that very first car that taught me so much, that there is more out there than what I was seeing day to day which was the family farm, the school, the mall and occasionally the markets. The beach was something I’d start driving to after school and on weekends with friends, mini day trips to places I’d never known existed before. Lunches, dinners and even better midnight Maccas runs and ice cream became a common theme of my late teens. It not only showed me how much more there is out there to see and do but also how nothing is as far as I’d imagined them to be too.

Was it a norm to experience this as we grow up? Surely it was for most of us. A town looking more familiar to us each day, a city being squeezed ever more closely and a world becoming less vast and impossible to tread; in our minds at least. What if the car was only the beginning, what if only by finding a means to cross borders easier and quicker, we can grow, learn and open our minds to experiences outside what we can only see day to day.

Today, my car is still my best friend and travel companion; and although I now drive, sail and fly across the world, it will always remind me of my first taste of real freedom in this world, one that was the beginning of a love and lust to explore and find.

 

 

Thanks for reading ❤

Jayy