Tag Archives: thoughts

Truth slap

I can’t wait for the day when life finally makes sense, when we find the silver lining in every tragedy, when we learn the lesson from each mistake and when we understand why our hearts needed to get broken a few times to let love in.

I can’t wait for the day that we understand why we met the right people at the wrong time or the wrong people at the right time and why our lives didn’t align to bring us together.

I wonder if it’s because they’re the wrong ones for us or because we still have a lot of growing up to do and we’re meant to be with someone who understand who we’re becoming not who we were.

I can’t wait for the day that we understand the lesson behind every struggle. Why we struggled to be successful, why we struggled to find love, why we struggled to reach our dreams and why we lost people who meant the world to us. I wonder if we needed these lessons to learn how to appreciate life and feel the pain of others or we just needed to learn that there is no living without suffering.

I can’t wait for the day that we understand why we had to hate ourselves to love ourselves, why we had to destroy ourselves to build ourselves up again and why we had to start over just before we got to the finish line. I wonder who saved us or who inspired us to save ourselves.

I wonder if we are meant to be reborn a few times so we can learn how to truly live. I want to know what triggered us to change and how we can no longer recognize who we used to be.

I can’t wait for the day that we understand why we keep falling for the wrong ones over and over again, why we can’t forget those who hurt us and why we sometimes can still forgive them and take them back. I want to understand how our hearts operate, how they function, how they move us to do things we would never do and lead us to places that we know we shouldn’t go to.

I’m curious to know why we listen to it, why we follow it blindly like it never got us lost before, why we trust it even though it left us broken and why do we always go back to it for questions when it keeps giving us the wrong answers. I wonder if there will come a day when we stop listening to it and if we’ll ever be truly alive without it.

They say everything happens for a reason and I truly believe that, but I also want to know what this reason is and why it chose us. Why some reasons keep recurring and why some reasons leave us even more perplexed. I want to understand why we go through certain things, what’s the message behind it and what if we never respond to this message, what if we just ignore it and keep living, what will happen then? Will our lives get lost in translation?

I can’t wait for the day that life makes sense – some days I understand why certain things happened and others I’m not so sure, but all I know is that somehow we’ll connect the dots and someday we’ll complete the puzzle, until then, we have to learn how to live our lives without trying to understand it and we have to learn how to be comfortable with the irony and uncertainty of life; otherwise we’ll lose our common sense trying to make sense of the life we’re living.

~ via facebook

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Paper

What would we do without it? Even in this time of ultra- modern technology paper is still indispensable, especially in the western society where people prefer to use it in the little room to clean what needs to be clean instead of just using the more hygienic alternative- water. Don’t get on your high horse so fast because I am not on mine either. I am just telling the simple fact and the simple truth. Don’t look for meaning behind it. I have my own stock of kitchen rolls in the garage too, something which is unthinkable where I came from. We air dry dishes and only have one dish cloth and one rag to clean every surface. Now, I have boxes and boxes of paper hankies for my chronic sinusitis and ongoing allergies. And I still prefer good old fashioned books than E-books and still holding on to little notebooks and post it notes to record my old school thoughts.

I used to have a collection of expensive multi-colored stationery which I hardly use. I bought them because I like the way they look, feel and smell. Reminds me of the beginning of the school year when I was young and my oldest sister shopped school supplies for me and my siblings. Those were the happiest times in my life. Going to school was so important to us the worst punishment my parents could inflict on us was to make us stay at home on school days to clean the house. Corporal punishment was preferable than missing a day of school. 

I don’t know if our modern technology has a positive effect on deforestation or it’s the other way around. I hope those stories about sustainable forests is not just a myth. I love paper and its various forms but not in the cost of the environment. As of now, we are experiencing a heat wave for two consecutive weeks now it is forbidden by our government to even water our own gardens and fill pools so our kids could swim. And it looks like it will continue towards the next week for the time being. Record shows that the number of days with highest temperature in history have increased double in the last couple of years. I wonder how long those unbelievers could deny the reality of global warming.

Here I am getting side tracked again. Do you think living without paper is possible in the near future? Or is it like asking if we could exist without the existence of plastic and God knows what other engineered products we think indispensable to our lifestyle and survival.

I’m off now to have a few seconds under the shower to cool off. I guess the government will not fine me for trying to still alive. They don’t keep track of what I’m doing anyway. Or they will arrest me for sitting here typing this article butt-naked (or it is buck-naked?) Anyway, I’m out of here and maybe see you later. (P.S. It’s too hot to edit. You know what I mean)

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To The Beautiful Woman Who Is Striving To Be Skinny

I see you everywhere.

You’re on my Facebook, posting selfies of your latest workout as sweat drips from your brow, words like dying, puking, exhausting are hash-tagged underneath.

Punishment.

My Instagram is filled with pictures of you, sporting your Lorna Jane as you burn away the calories of the cake you shouldn’t have eaten, but were too weak to resist.

Penance.

You sit opposite me, order your salad, no dressing, and berate yourself for being a kilogram heavier this week.

Self-loathing.

You are fraught with comparison, with how short you fall next to the mothers at the playground you’ll never be as fit as, the group of women at the gym you’ll never be as strong as, the bodies in the magazines you’ll never be as sexy as. You beat yourself up. Promise that tomorrow you’ll eat less and work out more. No excuses, no matter what. Push yourself, purge yourself, pressure yourself.

I was once like you. I obsessed over the number on the scale, lived by punishment or reward, survived on protein shakes, and applauded myself for staying under 1,000 calories a day. I worked out, no matter what. No matter how tired my body was, no matter how run down, exhausted, or unwell. I worked out until I almost threw up, head over my knees, rebuking myself with slogans. Go hard or go home. Unless you puke, faint or die, keep going. Excuses are for people who don’t want it bad enough. I pushed past the pain and worked out when my muscles were fatigued, when my body screamed for me to stop, when I injured my knee, my shoulder, until I eventually tore a disc in my back.

And that changed everything.

In an instant, I could no longer work out. My world ended. There was no worse fate that could have happened to me. I laid on my stomach for a month, unable to do anything. I cried with frustration, beat myself up with failure, drowned in self-hatred. I feared. I feared getting left behind, losing all the work I had put into my body. I feared people thinking I was lazy or weak. But mostly, I feared getting fat. Because in my eyes, that was the ultimate failure.

And so before my body was healed, I started to work out again. Each time would see me back where I’d started, in pain, on the floor, unable to walk. I did this for months until I just no longer could. Until I had to listen to my body, to surrender to what it needed. Rest. Recovery time. Gentle walks. Stretching. Yoga.

No more sweat-pouring, fat-burning, muscle-aching workouts.

At first it killed me, this surrendering. It yelled defeat, poked and prodded into my deepest places of insecurity and challenged my self-worth to the core; I was more bound in my body image than I realised. It’s subtle, the infiltration of what we are programmed to believe is beauty—we don’t realise the way it creeps into us, the way we yield to society’s standards even when we think we are immune to them.

Eventually, it became easier to surrender, easier to let go of the demands I had placed on myself to look a certain way. I stopped seeking my value in the number on the scale and found it instead in my mind, my heart, my character, and my contribution to the world. I shed lies, so many lies, of what I had come to believe beauty should be. I realised I had nothing to prove to anyone. Every day, I practiced kindness and spoke to myself the way I would speak to any other woman.

Beautiful woman, who you are, right now in this moment, is perfect.

I know you don’t believe me. I know you fill your head with your prerequisites of beauty. A flatter tummy. Toned arms. Size 10. Lose another five kilograms.

But I understand now.

Beauty isn’t measured in centimetres, my dear.

And the moment you understand will be the moment you find freedom.

You’ll begin to exercise because you love your body, not because you hate it. You’ll eat food that brings you life and health because your body craves nourishment, not deprivation. You’ll run in the sunshine because it brings you joy, not because you’ve earned punishment. You’ll let go of striving, of negativity, of guilt and frustration and failure.

But mostly, you’ll come to realise how beautiful you really are. How strong, how brave, how kind, how intelligent, how clever, how funny, how generous, how thoughtful. How much you love. Not how much you weigh.

Beautiful woman, stop.

Stop striving to be skinny, as if that’s the only measure of your worth.

Instead, strive to change the perception of beauty, the lies we have been told.

Strive to empower women, our daughters, through the truth of their worth.

Strive to see how beautiful you really are, right now, exactly in this moment.

And then watch the world become more beautiful, because of you.

Author: Kathy Parker

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Volume

Does size matter?

I bet there are more answers than one.

And all of them can be right.

Or wrong according to preference.

I heard a long time ago that when it comes to a certain matter it is not the size of the boat but the motion of the ocean. Before, I would have contest it but experience taught me that it is indeed so. Is it important? Up to a certain degree it is. But not enough to rock a solid foundation.

What about our recent bench mark on beauty? The thinner the better? Thigh gaps and all?

Let’s talk about possessions.

Bigger houses bigger cars bigger balance in bank accounts

How about goals?  Not Citius, Altius, Fortius but Altus, Grandis, Immanis or it is Ingens, Bumelia, Magnus?

Just give me real, lasting and cozy. Harmonious, respectful, loyal and trustworthy. Quality over quantity. That’s good enough for me.

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Daily Prompt

Monday Thoughts

We are in a society that hates emotions. They are rejected as being anti-intellectual, anti-political, anti-everything. We are animals with brains. People all over the world have inherited the disease firstly of feeling that money is the answer to their life’s problems and secondly that intellectualism is an answer to their problems.

We need to stop intellectualizing so much and rely on what we feel. If you feel something, it’s true. The only truth you can really know is something emotional that you feel. When we lose our instincts for truth, we are nothing.

– John Cassavetes

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Why I Will Always Choose To Be A Little Bit Fat

How we can all feel good about ourselves, whatever our size.

I saw an article a few weeks ago with this incredible before-and-after set of photos of an overweight, post-baby woman who then became totally “bikini-worthy.”

So I had to click the link, of course, to have a look. No question about it—the “after” photo of this woman was a stunning shot. She looked fit, toned, healthy and gorgeous. I read on, eager to discover what her secret was; what profound magical method it was that she had used to shed however-many-number of pounds.

There it was, a long and detailed tract of the super lean, restrictive diet she had put herself on for a year. No carbs, no dairy, no fruit, no nothing. The sample diet she had shared in the article seemed to consist of little more than hummus, celery and endless amounts of steamed fish. Healthy—yes. Exciting, delicious, fun lifestyle—no.

I decided in that moment that I would choose to continue being a little bit fat.

Yes, I could do with losing at least about 10 pounds so that the Bébé dress I bought earlier this year would fit that much more snugly. But if it’s at the expense of not eating fruit, freshly baked breads, Greek yogurt and honey for a year, well then, I choose emphatically to continue being 10 pounds more than I should be.

Science is a wonderful thing. It’s revealed so many revolutionary ways of understanding the way our bodies work and the effects of new foods, super foods, bad foods and good foods on our health. It’s sad though that “health” has so often come to be equated only and necessarily with thinness.

The glut of diet programs, weight-loss fads, fat-burning supplements and specialized bikini-body workouts are now as much a part of our daily consumer choices as the aisles of (“forbidden”) food in supermarkets. There seems to be no excuse not to be “healthy” (read: thin) given the huge number of aids, YouTube videos and literature on the subject.

Articles like the one I read aren’t necessarily always an encouraging, inspiring thing. They don’t just tell the story of an overweight person who chose discipline and a healthier lifestyle. There is often also a more sinister sub-narrative that raises its eyebrows at the reader and challenges her—“If this person can lose xx pounds, why can’t you?”—even if the reader may not actually be unhealthy or overweight.

The titles of these articles alone are almost always weight-centered, like “I lost 120 pounds, ask me how!” or “How one man lost 200 pounds in a year.” Rarely are these articles presented through the perspective of someone choosing a healthier lifestyle, discarding bad nutritional habits or incorporating fitness into their daily routine.

There it is: the continuous, unceasing reminder that we should all be striving toward thinness. From cabbage soup fasts, to low-everything diets, to 20-minute fat-blasting workouts, the desirable end result is usually almost and entirely about becoming become a thinner version of ourselves.

I am not ignoring the fact that for a percentage of people who are facing the health risks of being dangerously overweight, losing weight is a part of becoming healthier. I don’t discount that and understand how important it is in these cases to count calories and lost inches.

Problems arise when that very same method is being adopted by people who aren’t facing any health risks—who may, in fact, be completely healthy, fit people—but who still feel that they would be healthier if only they were five, 10 or 20 pounds lighter.

So I’d like to suggest flipping things around a bit; looking at things through another lens.

Let’s focus on being healthy—and just that.

Logically and biologically, it would follow that by following a healthy way of living, eating and exercising, everything else will find its proper balance. We would lose weight if we needed to lose weight, we’d gain muscle if we needed to gain muscle, we’d balance out all the other things that come from not being healthy—stress, cholesterol, diabetes, poor complexion, hair loss etc.

And what does it mean to live healthily? In the face of all the new diet and exercise schemes, I think that actually, we all already know what it means to live a healthy, balanced, feel-totally-awesome lifestyle, without having to follow any fad or buy any specialized products.

Intuitively, deep down inside, we do know the basics of living well. We know when we’ve had enough to eat, what kinds of foods are good for us, what makes us feel good and what makes us go into a slump, how much exercise we need to do, when to stop when we’re exhausted and when to rest.

We know this not just intellectually, but physically—our bodies are always telling us what we need to do; we just need to listen.

One’s body will tell us when it feels like a massive binge on Chinese take-out. It will also tell us when it’s had enough so we don’t insist on finishing every last fortune cookie. Our bodies will take us dancing, running, swimming, trampolining and playing; but they will also make us rest and sleep.

I read something beautiful a while ago, about how we shouldn’t change our bodies so we can love them.

Instead, we should create change in the way we treat ourselves because we love our bodies.

Ultimately this is about focusing on health: the physical health of our bodies and the emotional health of how we see and relate to our bodies. We love our bodies—this temporary shell on loan to us for this lifetime—so we treat them well, nourish them, feed them, move them, hug them, stretch then, let them dance, discipline them, give them a treat sometimes and most of all enjoy them.

Enjoying our bodies is to indulge in the beautiful, sensual things like good food, good sex and the rush of an energetic run in the mornings. But also, I think enjoyment is about ensuring our bodies are at their prime health so that they truly get the most out of these things and appreciate, at our body’s fullest capacity, the good food, good sex and energetic run.

This is true whatever size we’re at, whether we’re trying to lose weight or gain weight, whether we’re severely overweight or dangerously underweight.

This is true because it’s a matter of health and of helping our bodies be at their optimum functioning levels, not merely a matter of what we look like.

Yes, ideally, I would still like the scales to tell me that I am 10 pounds lighter and to see my dress size drop to a single digit. But then, I have to ask myself what it really is that I’d like to get out of being that much thinner. I don’t have any illnesses, I live a happy, active life, and I’ve been medically cleared for good, prime health.

So what is it? To be more attractive? To feel more energetic? To turn more heads? To tighten that gap between me and the Victoria’s Secret models?

I realize now that if I only just went back to focusing on being healthy, everything else would find its rightful place. When I’m feeling healthy, my skin glows, my hair is shiny and I’m a face full of radiance. When I’m feeling fit after a big run and deep session of yoga, I’m also confident, joyful and there’s an extra bounce in my step.

Automatically, without being a single ounce lighter, I realize now that being healthy alone is enough to be more attractive, feel more energetic, turn more heads and gain almost as many admirers as the Victoria’s Secret angels.

With a focus on health, instead of weight, I find too that I enjoy life a whole lot more. I eat without guilt and play with abandon. I move and shift and indulge the very real needs of my body instead of spending good hours of my day fussing over diet plans, exercise schedules and meal replacement shakes.

It isn’t only when I achieve a vision of thinness that I am deemed healthy and attractive.

I am attractive because I am living healthily.

And if that means I shall always be a little bit fat, with a few extra pounds to shed, then that’s exactly what I shall be.

-via Jamie Khoo Conscious ReThink Elephant Journal

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Why Becoming An Interesting Person Is No Longer Interesting To me

I don’t care that you’ve been around the world, I want to know what you’ve experienced in those places that has shaped you into the beautiful human who you are now.

What are you passionate about and how does it show up in what you do?

I was asked this by someone I met the other day.

I found it to be one of the more interesting questions I’ve been asked recently.

Generally, when I meet people at conferences, events or social gatherings I’m asked one of two questions:

“What do you do?”

“Where are you from?”

These two questions feel forced, canned and certainly not interesting.

So when someone asks me, “What are you passionate about and how does that show up with what you do?” I’m intrigued.

Well, intrigued and slightly stumped.

I knew that I could answer this in a number of ways, so I wasn’t yet sure of what I wanted to say.

I had to really think and feel into what I wanted to share with this human who I had just met.

You see, most introduction questions attempt to put us into a metaphorical box—but her question did the opposite.

I certainly wasn’t thinking, “Is she going to judge or stereotype me based on what I do?”

I was relieved. And her question opened up the conversation into a deeper understanding of how we can create more awesome and meaningful relationships.

This leads to an (interesting) discussion about being interested versus being interesting.

But first, I’m curious: do people generally feel more connected with someone when they’re talking about themselves (no matter how cool their world is or isn’t) or when they’re asking you questions about yourself that they actually want to know the answers to?

For me, it’s the latter. I love when people ask me questions that really get me to think and feel.

Not, “What do you do?” or “Where are you from?” questions, but questions that make stop and really consider the answers.

These questions don’t have to be fancy, but meaningful and connective.

Asking these questions is something I try to do whenever I’m getting to know someone else.

Most of us have been conditioned to believe that in order to become “cool” or interesting, we must be interesting — travel the world, own a business, live an unconventional life or do significant things.

This, however, is not the case.

In fact, the more I make relationships about myself or all the “cool” things that I’ve done, the more off-putting I become to others.

Ever hear someone brag and talk about all the places that they’ve been? Someone who doesn’t share this information with the intention of orienting the listener to another culture, but rather as something that makes the speaker feel significant or better in some way?

I’ve certainly experienced this and have tried to not be “that guy,” at times.

Being interesting is exhausting and it puts a lot of pressure on ourselves to keep up with an image that we think we need to be for people to like us.

Personally, I don’t care that you’ve been around the world. I want to know what you’ve experienced in those places that has shaped you into the beautiful human who you are now.

I don’t care that you’re about to sell one of your businesses for millions of dollars—I’d rather know why you started it to begin with.

I don’t care that you’ve written a NY Times best seller, but I do want to feel what you had to sacrifice to get to that achievement.

I want to know who you are, not where you’re from.

I don’t care what you do, unless you share it in a way that allows me to experience more of who you are.

So, I’ll do my best to not ask you questions that rob you of the opportunity to share how wonderfully human you are.

Will you do the same?

Be interested in an interesting way.

Ask better questions.

Listen—really listen—and watch a world of opportunities open up for you like you never expected.

Not because you wanted them to, but just because you decided to be interested in an interesting way.

Relephant

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Note To Self

When I get lonely these days, I think, So be lonely. Learn your way around loneliness. Make a map of it. Sit with it, for once in your life. Welcome to the human experience. But never again use another person’s body or emotions as a scratching post for your own unfulfilled yearnings.

– Elizabeth Gilbert

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Pink

Try to forget what objects you have before you – a tree, a house, a field, or whatever. Merely think, ‘Here is a little square of blue, here an oblong of pink, here a streak of yellow,’ and paint it just as it looks to you, the exact color and shape, until it gives you your own impression of the scene before you.

-Claude Monet

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Pursue

“Make a radical change in your lifestyle and begin to boldly do things which you may previously never have thought of doing, or been too hesitant to attempt. So many people live within unhappy circumstances and yet will not take the initiative to change their situation because they are conditioned to a life of security, conformity, and conservation, all of which may appear to give one peace of mind, but in reality nothing is more damaging to the adventurous spirit within a man than a secure future. The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun. If you want to get more out of life, you must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life that will at first appear to you to be crazy. But once you become accustomed to such a life you will see its full meaning and its incredible beauty.”

― Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild

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Daily Prompt

Temporary

This too shall pass. It may sting, it may smart it may hurt like hell but this too shall pass. In the depths of pain you will find a steely strength that you could not have acquired any other way. Don’t tinge it with bitterness. Keep it pure and forge your way forward…

~ Skylar Liberty Rose

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Daily Prompt