There’s a great sense of accomplishment that comes from finishing a book, but if we are able to read a book and absorb the wisdom, lessons and knowledge while applying it in our own lives, then that’s one of the most rewarding things in life.
In a heavily switched-on world, it can feel like there’s no pause button. Our phones have become an extension of us most noticeably since the pandemic. The nature of unpredictability has become increasingly more transparent.
Living with less means creating space for the important aspects of our lives that bring greater value. We are increasingly encouraged to consume more in a tech-saturated environment, where the rise of targeted advertising is driving growth in our spending.
A trip to the supermarket felt like an adventure as a child. It still does. Roaming the aisles of different food categories was comforting and easily amusing. The nostalgia of shopping is a fond memory and one of those activities that bring joy.
We can spend periods of our lives in a cycle that repeats itself if we don’t seek the desire to change. Nature is always changing and evolving. That is the beautiful part of nature, as it takes its time to achieve great change. How we spend our time is precious.
Empathy comes from listening and putting yourself, truly putting yourself in someone’s shoes by feeling what the other person is feeling. Humility is the ability to say that you don’t know everything.
A battle with the ego is a daily war, a mere voice in our head and a character that tortures us. The sense of our true self is experienced when we let go of thoughts that aren’t true. Those limiting thoughts creep in to consume us and eat us alive.
The word nice is often said as a compliment to say that someone is lovely, sweet and friendly. “You are such a nice person, Katie!” was a very common phrase I heard growing up. As time passes by, it has been a blessing and a curse that has taught me many lessons.
Humans are wired to connect and to have authentic conversations. Being sensitive, empathetic and vulnerable are traits that allow us to truly connect with people. A highly sensitive person (HSP) experiences the world through a heightened way through high sensory experiences.
The exhausting part of our daily lives erupt when we feel the need for most people to understand. Every person is deeply complex. The greatest blessing can lie in feeling understood by those who truly care.
The complexities of the human condition are deeply reflected in the layers that we each have. The antidote to this are the authentic acts of vulnerability and empathy. The fear of judgment causes us to hide our childlike self under a hard shell, rather than allowing our true self to flourish
The most whirlwind year was filled with the most unpredictable turn of events. I never could have truly imagined as soon as the clock turned midnight that the year would be filled with all the crazy things that happened.
The psychology of sales, discounts and promotions tend to convince the need to buy in order to feel a sense of satisfaction through saving. This is a powerful marketing tactic as it encourages consumers to buy and therefore increases production demands.
When we fill our hearts with gratitude, we realise how much we have. When you focus on what you have, you don’t spend time thinking about what you don’t have. The constant focus on wanting to accumulate materials or external validation can never result in true happiness.
It’s important to look at what someone does more than what they say. As you grow older, you realise the deeper meaning of the saying that actions speak louder than words. When I was younger, I was very trustworthy of what other people said, and I liked to think everyone was a good and honest person.
During my teenage years, I prayed that I could be more confident, outgoing and speak my mind freely. When I entered my twenties, I accepted myself for the qualities that I have that simply are a part of who I am.
The ability to take action, maintain persistence and take time to do difficult things can lead to progress and development. We can consume, listen and read a lot of good advice from people, books and online.
No matter where we are in the world, it’s the state of mind that you’re in that determines the life you want to live. When you’re filled with gratitude and love, you appreciate what you already have.
Connection is an important part of relationships, and having a sense of community can affect our well being. True connections are incredibly valuable.
Comparison can cause us to create a false image of ourselves and those around us. When comparison can be a benefit is when it enables us to become a better version of ourselves, whether through improvement in our skills or behaviour.
Being born and raised in New Zealand, I grew up feeling never quite fully Kiwi, and yet when I would visit Taiwan, I’d feel never quite fully Taiwanese. Sense of belonging and having a strong sense of one’s cultural identity can be a struggle when you grow up between two cultures.
Every day we have the ability to make choices in what we consume, and what businesses we support with our money. Every product has an environmental footprint, which is why it’s good to purchase items that have minimal packaging.
In the digital age, the question of privacy seems to be ever changing, as large corporations have an increasing amount of information on individuals. Reading Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now by Jaron Lanier, was eye opening and makes you ask a lot of questions in regards to privacy, technology and social media.
Taiwan was once known as Formosa, which means beautiful island. If you ever have the chance to travel and explore the island, you will see its beauty in nature, culture, and people. It is really somewhere you need to come to see and experience for yourself.
I was reading a book by Dr. Libby, and I feel like she always has so much wisdom to share. It really resonated with me, when she wrote “What we focus on is what we feel.” There is so much truth to this, and it makes me think about how powerful our thoughts are.
When you think back to when you were a child, what do you remember? I think of the moments where I could crouch down and stare at a snail with so much curiosity, and it would be exciting and intriguing.
Growing up as a bilingual child, I remember my Father telling me that I would speak to the neighbours in Mandarin with a Kiwi accent!
I feel a little scared to write this. I was around twelve when I started weighing myself on the scales. I ran in the morning before school, and straight after school when I got home. I drank a lot of water and I ate as much as I liked because my metabolism was a skyrocket. When I left home at sixteen, I developed signs of an eating disorder.
The magic of reading is that it allows you to expand your mind, use your imagination and learn something new. It helps you gain a new perspective, go on adventures and leave your comfort zone.
I remember being asked for help in Maths, but Maths and Science were my worst subjects at school. When I gave help to other classmates, I knew my explanation could be wrong, but I knew that I was singled out for help because of the stereotype that Asians are good at Maths and Science.
Everyone has different experiences growing up, and we have a diverse mixture of cultures in New Zealand. A little background about me is that I was born and raised in New Zealand, and spent most of my life living by the beach, on the farm and now in the city.
An action I appreciate so deeply is when someone takes the time to sit down to write a letter or a card. I find that there is somewhat a lost art of writing on a piece of paper, writing a letter to a loved one or making a card for someone.
I finished reading Being Chinese – A New Zealander’s Story by Helene Wong in two days, and it really made me think about my own background, experiences and thoughts on being a New Zealander.
Dressing well is a form of self care. Think of when you went on your first date, your first interview and your first dance. You probably made effort in grooming yourself a certain way, to present yourself for the occasion. Dressing well is not only a sign of respect for yourself, but also for those around you.
When I’m living in Taipei, I feel like it’s completely normal to put up an umbrella when the sun is out. It’s very common in many Asian countries, such as China, Taiwan, Japan and Korea. On Summer days like today, the sun can be very harsh in Auckland, and I tend to use an umbrella to stay cool and avoid getting sun burnt.
Clothes are one of the largest polluters in the world. There is so much we don’t see from the clothes we wear, from the source of the fabric, where the cotton was grown, how much water was used to bring the piece of clothing to life, what environment the worker who sewed the piece of clothing worked in, how much they are paid and many other aspects that are often clouded by heavy advertising that shows the clothing in an attractive manner to grasp our attention.
English was one of my favourite subjects at school as I loved writing essays and reading novels. The beauty of language is that it allows us to communicate to different people.
There is something about writing and speaking that are different in many ways, because for some, speaking comes more naturally and for others, it can be difficult to put exactly into words how they’re feeling inside.
It’s interesting to think that no one really knows what we’re like. Only a very few that are close to us will see us through our ups and downs, but no one can live the journey of another. I had a conversation with a friend recently about how people will view you the way they see you.
During last year I tried to become vegetarian, but it only lasted 3 months. At the time, I stopped because I was lacking energy and my mood was greatly affected. If you know what foods you eat as a vegetarian that really help to boost your energy, please let me know!
I grew up in the country side where we had many pets growing up. Growing up on the farm there were cows, sheep, horses and the very dear animal I wanted most was a pig!
Many of us tend to show more of our personality the more we become comfortable with a person.
This is one of the most important reminders in life that we need. Getting outside of your comfort zone is important, because for a very long time I allowed my anxiety to take over my daily life. Most fear is built up in our imagination.
As I walk into a space, there is often people with their heads down on their phone or laptop. It makes me think about how we don’t see daydreamers as often as we used to, and if you catch sight of one, perhaps you might make eye contact for a fleeting second.
When I think back to my childhood, I’m grateful for a time when technology hadn’t been as nearly prevalent in our lives. We weren’t surrounded by a screen for a significant amount of the day, and we cherished the moments of going to the cinema to watch a film or played outside in the grass.
This is one of the most important lessons in life. Your attitude determines your choices and how you feel about a situation, and what you want to learn from it. The mind is everything. What you think, you become.
We might feel most ourselves when listening to the sound of the waves going in and out, breathing in the morning fresh crisp air and walking in the rain with the sound of tapping against the umbrella.
Chinese is one of the most beautiful languages in the world. When you see the words themselves, each of them are like a picture. It is the most spoken language in the world by more than 1 billion people.
When we walk in the centre of the city, we’re surrounded by strangers and unfamiliar faces. Everyone’s walking towards somewhere for some reason. Sometimes I wonder in my mind, what’s happening in their lives.
There’s a misconception that confidence means being an extrovert, being loud, openly expressive and outgoing. There is this image of someone who is likable, energetic and gets a long with everyone.
When I think of soft spoken people, I think of Audrey Hepburn, Katie Holmes and Winona Ryder. The thing with the way we speak is that we don’t really hear ourselves. It’s similar in the sense that we don’t hear our own accent.
When we care less about certain voices in our minds or the words of others, we become more happy and free. We let go of negative judgment from those we aren’t close to, and we feel unaffected by criticism that has no value to our self growth.
I recently finished reading a book called A Philosophy of Walking by Frédéric Gros. It was such a beautiful read. It was a peaceful feeling walking to the rose gardens the other day, knowing I’d read a book about walking!
Quiet: The Power Of Introverts In A World That Can’t Stop Talking was the first book I read in 2017. It was such a wonderful and incredibly relatable book that had me nodding throughout.
Do you ever have those moments, where the thoughts in your mind are not as eloquently expressed when spoken out loud? Perhaps you have a day where you sit down to write in your journal, but the words don’t seem to flow.
I believe the title is originally a book from 1981 by American writer Raymond Carver. There are different types of love. Affectionate love, friendship love, romantic love and spiritual love.
No matter how successful we are in our lives or how badly we may fall, we will always be judged. It happens no matter if we are striving for something, making a change in our lives or taking action for something.
The best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen or even touched – they must be felt with the heart. -Helen Keller. A beautiful reminder that reminds us to place more value on how we can become a better person through our mind and heart.
We’re born alone, we live alone, we die alone. Only through our love and friendship can we create the illusion for the moment that we’re not alone. – Orson Welles. Our bodies are the home we live in for the rest of our lives. Feeling lonely is feeling unwanted and isolated.
There is a reason why people come and go (or stay) in our lives. When I reflect back on the people I have met over the course of my life, I realise that no matter what the relationship was like with the person, I learned something from it.
We see the world differently through our own eyes everyday. I feel like there is this part of myself, that wishes I could tell anyone who has ever felt alone, left out, worthless, ugly, hurt or question what their purpose in life is, I wish I could tell them how beautiful they are as a person.
Have you ever felt as if you can’t quite articulate something vocally, the way you may think of it in your mind? Writing everything translates much more fluidly from your mind to your fingertips.
Whenever I walk on the pavement of the city streets, I see the strangers walk past me, and know there is so much history in their lives.
Saving money is a great habit to make, whether you want to minimise the things in your life, pay off the bills, save towards a goal, travel the world or invest for the future. Money does provide a sense of financial security that gives us the daily necessities and long term necessities we need.
Growing up, you may of read The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry. As I was sitting in a cafe called Woolloomooloo in Taipei last year with my dear friend, she told me how she was reading the book.
As someone who is a morning person, I have seen many benefits in waking up early. Having a good sleep, can increase our productivity, maintain a steady metabolism and encourage good health.