Great things take time

I can’t believe it’s been 1325 days since that one night.

I can’t believe it’s also been 1144 days since I was almost killed by a car.

I’d been living since and sometimes it feels that very little has changed, although, I can’t say I wasted 1000+ days of my life. Things have changed. I like to think if back in October 2013 was the pivot point that signified all else after then I have to say that my 1000 days have been spent trying out different options.

First, I strengthened myself.

Second, I started to try different things to get myself out of my less than ideal situation.

Third, I found out that I had to change course many many times and I did.

Fourth, I am here today wishing that I had started sooner, but at the same time glad that I started at all. I feel like I’m going somewhere, though of course there are tweaks I need to complete and various routes to explore. However, hardwork and despair are no longer feared, instead they are welcome as I am sure they will be my companions for times to come.

Fifth, for all those out there struggling to become better, I encourage you to look back on the past few years, perhaps look back on that point where you decided you could be better, could do better, do be somewhere better, and look at how far you’ve come. I want you to give yourself credit for all of your accomplishments, because only you know the inner struggles the sacrifices you have to gone through. And for that reason, we’re all warriors in our own right.

Sixth, now, with all that in mind, get out there and continue to improve.

Quick tip: how to maintain productivity over the weekend

Ah, weekends are for relaxation, right?

Not exactly, if you’re like me, who’s busy with school and life you’d want to use your weekend constructively while still relax. If time was a currency, then often on weekends I would feel the urge to splurge and then acquire massive sleep debts leading into the workweek, which is not recommended at all.

Instead today I decided to go against what I usually would do, i.e: roll out of bed past 3pm then stay home all day then stay up until 3am (hardly a recipe for productivity). I decided to get up early and go for a walk, then make plans with friends for tomorrow so that I would have to finish my work today in order to relax tomorrow.

It turns out, this time restraint tactic worked better than I thought. By restricting the time block that I had to accomplish tasks, I managed to get more tasks done.

What you are doing today is important.

Not gonna lie, April has been a busy and stressful month for me. Between wrapping up school projects, I’ve also managed to squeeze in time at work. It all meant caffeine-fueled days and nights – where my waking moments felt like a dream and my dreams were filled with potential failings of my days.

Of course, this did not translate well in my psyche and I ran into several times during the semester where I absolutely felt like I’m heading for a mental breakdown. In the heat of the moment, it just felt that the impossible was before me and I needed to get past it anyhow.

Drawing from previous experience, I always tried to push down the fears and tell myself it’ll be over soon…and true to my promise to myself – I did get over it and it was over soon.

Still, getting past obstacles was one thing but staying motivated to the cause was another – several times I found myself back away from things that needed to be done and my motivation chip away from the mountain of responsibilities I had racked up with seemingly no way out but to see it through.

The feeling of lack of direction stayed with me until today, as I was studying for those pesky finals which will commence right after Easter Holidays. I randomly picked up a book by Anthony “Tony” Robbins – Awaken the Giant Within. I’m not even half way through the book, but when Anthony wrote about the story of the founder of Honda – whom had to go through many trials and tribulations just to get to where he was – only to have it swept out from under him by forces way beyond his control, made me realize that what I had to deal with was nothing and perhaps I should remind myself more often that what I’m doing today is of high importance to the future I’m shaping up for tomorrow and so on.

I also read an article recently that I think will help with me despising where I am currently residing. And for those of you with a similar issue, here’s the article: To Beat Burnout, Be Good at Ignoring Things . Essentially, we should learn to ignore things that are outside of our control and focus on what we can control.

In reflection, while it did feel like I “tried” from January to April to “deal” with the situation, I still often adopted the “helpless” mindset, as if I’m struggling to get by. I let things that I couldn’t control occupy my thoughts for too long and did not learn to ignore and focus until recently. But still, I know I am progressing. I know I am slowly learning to do the right thing in order to achieve what I want in life. I might in several years late in realizing what I want, but it’s better late than never.

Remember, what you are doing today is important as you are shaping your future accordingly.

You got to go for it.

Late night studying, no, not these language, but rather computer programming languages (I guess I’ll get to that later). I popped onto Facebook and saw 20+ memories. I just had to click. After another sip of my coffee in the dead of night. I scrolled through all those posts I made years ago.

This song popped up: You got to go – Above & Beyond

Yet another sign isn’t it. How did I know so long ago, just by liking the lyrics?

Then I thought back, to earlier this evening, earlier this week and how many friend I counselled with issues similar to mine. They feel that they’re stuck in the wrong place – or perhaps they’re disappointed with where they are at in life – disappointment is a driving force.

Then I remember a quote from a business book that’s mandatory for class:

“A satisfied need is not a motivator; only needs that remain unsatisfied can influence behaviour.”

You’re unsatisfied? Good.

You know what you want? Even better.

Go get it. You got to. Because you know what’s waiting on the other side if you don’t.

Disappointment only leads to more desire.

Don’t disappoint yourself this time.

Life is not a rehearsal.

And yes, I realize I haven’t been posting much. Between a hectic school schedule, I also manage to sneak work in here and there. My final exams are coming up and I fully intend on seizing the moment! Wish me luck!

How To Have A Good Week.

Monday Monday Monday, probably not everyone’s favorite day of the week. However, now that I look at Monday, I’m actually excited. Why you might say, well Monday is the beginning of a new week, and I believe that how you set up your Monday affects your entire week.

I’m not talking productivity alone, but also overall wellbeing.

Think about it, if you start off your week right, then you’ll stay focused and ready to engage in whatever life throws at your way.

Here are some quick tips (which I might also expand on at a later date).

  1. Go to bed no later than 11PM on a Sunday night. Why is this? Well, because you need to be refreshed for Monday mornings.
  2. Hit the Gym in the morning. This is so crucial, this morning I made it to the gym by 5:30AM. Not only did my workout wake me up, but it also got me excited for the whole week with a focused mindset. Another plus is that usually at 5AM in the morning there’s hardly anyone at the gym. So you’ll have the place to yourself to workout in peace and also leave feeling pumped and accomplished, ready to tackle the day.
  3. Stay hydrated. And not with coffee, I realized in the past few months because of the lack of routine and how much work I had to handle, I relied too heavily on caffeine products, which would leave me feeling lethargic and mind-fogged after the buzz is gone. And what I found out was that I wasn’t drinking enough water. Remember your body is 70% water so you need to replenish throughout the day.
  4. Eat Healthy. I know, this is also hard, especially if you’re running around trying to complete task after task after task and you feel that you have very little time for yourself. And of course, in that state people are more likely to reach for something high fat, high sugar, high salt to treat themselves. And while a treat once in a while isn’t going to be too damaging, but if you’re doing it regularly (personal experience) and add in the booze, then there’s an issue. If your budget allow it, then grab a salad at a healthy place, if it doesn’t then meal prep (which is something I’m going to do later this week, since I forgot to do it last Sunday opps.)
  5. Stay proactive. Here’s another truth, work will pile up if you don’t stay on top of it. Complaining about it won’t make it go away. Tackle everything with enthusiasm!! And now, I’m going to do just that.

    Have a good week everyone! 🙂

Why you fail to achieve your goals.

Goal setting, I’m sure we’re all done it, whether conscious or subconscious.

Everytime you hear yourself say, I want X by Y time, you’re setting a goal for yourself. Now, if you don’t put a time on X, then that is merely a wish.

However, often times, goals are set, but are never get realized. Why is that?

There are of course many reasons for goal hinderance, but the biggest one I’ve realized as of late is because of poor compartmentalization rather than planning itself.

You can plan an overall goal, but can you anticipate each step you need to take to make that goal successful?

Failure is often not poor planning, but poor execution. 

Life doesn’t stop and wait for you to “feel ready” to do something. Life just goes. And with that said, so should your goal. Let’s say, if your goal is to “build a functional website in 10 days.” Then the first thing you should do is to make up a work plan, but also at the same time, divide it up in 10 days (hopefully you’ll have that 10 days to yourself, but rarely is that the case) if you don’t have the 10 days to yourself, then you got to get creative, squeeze the project in and get it done.

Now this leads me to the second part of failure.

Failure is often when you fail to sacrifice what is now, for what will be in the future. 

I’ve ran into this last week. I was just not having it, even though I had 300 million things to do. A total breakdown. I broke under pressure. And I realized, that was weakness on my part.

I should’ve just pushed personal issues aside and powered through. To be honest, a lot of things in life are once in a life time. When I think back, sure, it’s never really life or death – but, wouldn’t it be better if I gave it my all on first try and didn’t fuck up as much?

Failure is getting sidetracked and forgetting what the end goal is.

TL:DR: If your internal system decides that the present is worth more than the future then your goal wouldn’t be achieved. But, if your future depends on the sacrifices you make today – then make that sacrifice for a better future.

Myer-Briggs Test

Here’s something I find interesting, in business class today, we had to do a personality test and since I’ve done these tests before I skipped ahead and completed the assignment which was to develop it into a spiel and present it to the classroom. For my personality type, which is INTJ, I wrote the following.

INTJ

We are known as “the architects”. We view the world around us as building blocks, our blueprint is our experiences, possibilities are endless. We’re often quiet because our minds never stop churning from being ravenously curious about the world.

We work well with ideas. We see the possibilities and apply them to the world. We’re imaginative problem solvers.

In fact, I think each INTJ has their own methods of viewing a problem, dissecting a problem, then solving it. We’re logical and analytical, objective and impartial.


You can trust us with coming up with a course of action, implement it, and see it through.

Recently, someone asked me, ‘what makes you happy?’

“I want to understand things in order to improve upon what is known and possible. I want to understand things in order to achieve what is deemed unheard of and impossible.”

If you’re curious to find out what you are, you can go here: https://www.16personalities.com/intj-personality
and try out the test yourself.

Study tips for serious procrastinators

Let’s be real here, someday, or somedayor even week could be a non-productive day/week. There is only so much ‘studying’ one could do before well, ‘burn-out’ happens and before you know it, you’re a couple of lectures behind on material. So what would you do in that case?

Say if you have a Quiz on Friday and it is already Wednesday…

What should you do?

Well first, even if you want to procrastinate more, it’s definitely time to snap out of it. While it is tempting to scroll through endless amounts of Instagram posts and Snapchat, find new music on Youtube and Spotify, you know, deep down that with each second that passes the opportunity to study passes with it.

The thing is I like to think that I’m not stupid – but I’m also self confessed, very lazy. If I knew I could be getting away with minimal work then why would I put in extra time. But, this is of course a dangerous idea.

The problem is you think you have time.

Here are a few things to consider:

There’s only 24 hours in a day, and that 3-4 hours you waste are still counted within that 24 hour day.

You still have to sleep 5-8 hours a day to remain functional without copious amounts of coffee. (I’d recently done a test with very little sleep, bad bad idea.)

So let’s say you sleep 7 hours, you still have 17 hours to study, right?

WRONG.

You actually have very little time, given other responsibilities and commitments such as classes, meetings, the gym, eating, personal care, venting to friends, listening to friends vent to you.

So how much time do you actually have?

Very little and none if you don’t schedule for it.

Now that we’ve gone through the reasons and logistics – now the solution. If you’re absolutely pressed for time say there’s a test in 48 hours.

  1. open up your lecture notes now and start skimming through the concepts and make sure you understand everything (if you don’t circle it or make a note of it and then go back once the review is done.)
  2. make sure you go over the concepts you’re hazy about and understand them.
  3. Depending on the subject, if it’s math oriented, do lots and lots of practice problems that will no doubt show up on the test. If it’s more memorization oriented, make sure you can relate the terms in a concept that works together i.e: see the bigger picture.
  4. repeat steps 1-3 in every spare moment you have when you’re hopefully not procrastinating anymore.
  5. let your cram sessions be a lesson and learn to pace yourself throughout the week. It is much easier digesting material bit by bit rather than all at once.

Fun fact, did you know, a ‘bit’ (binary digit) is the smallest unit of information stored in a computer. It translates to a yes or no (true/false) answer to a question. A collection of 8 bits is a byte and this of course translates to 2 bytes being 16 bits, 4 bytes being 32 bits, and 8 bytes being 64 bits.

And now off to more studying!

What is the vision for 2017?

Barcelona, Spain, Travel, Europe

Wow, doesn’t time fly when you’re busy? But does busy equate to productivity? The answer would be no.

March is upon us and I realized I never wrote a plan for this year. I mean, in 2017 I want to achieve quite a few things which I’ve highlighted in how do you know if you’re on the right track. But to make everything more concrete so I know exactly what to finish before summer arrives:

March:

  • Use Spring Break wisely and catch up on school work.
  • Decide on a personal project you’re going to do / could put into your portfolio.
  • Finish 1 extracurricular book outside of reading material.
  • Hit the gym 5 days / 7 days.
  • Duolingo everyday!
  • Blog once a week, review progress.

April

  • Ace those finals!
  • Have the basics down for personal project be 10% complete.
  • Finish 1 extracurricular book outside of reading material.
  • Hit the gym 5 days / 7 days.
  • Duolingo everyday!
  • Blog once a week, review progress.

May

  • Wrap up on final school project.
  • Have personal project be 20% complete, and set up for further offline work.
  • Finish 1 extracurricular book outside of reading material.
  • Hit the gym 5 days / 7 days.
  • Duolingo everyday!
  • Blog once a week, review progress.

How do you know you’re on the right track?

Ever since I’ve been back at school, I haven’t had much time to myself. My program is compact and intensive. It takes up my 9-5 hours from Monday to Friday, on top of that, I have a myriad of assignments to complete, group members to meet-up with, and needless to say, I have no idea how I made it through the first month of it while still working on the weekends…

Alas, I survived the ordeal and now I’m here.

Midterm season is upon me and I thought why not take the time to recap and reflect?

Q1. Am I happy with my program?

A1. For the most part, yes. Yes it is exhausting, but I’m also learning a lot. The people in my program are awesome! It is really as if we realize we’re in this pressurized cooker together – just trying to get done. I’m happy I went back to school, giving it a second shot. Dare I say, I’m giving myself a short-term purpose, something to focus on other than being constantly reminded how I’m nowhere I want to be.

Q2. What are some of my short-term goals / plans?

A2. Finish this semester and go travel. I’m in need of another break from where I am now in order to be inspired to get to where I want to be eventually. I also need to use my trusty camera more.

Q3. How do you know you’re on the right track?

A3. Gut feeling, or if what you’re doing now beats out all other alternative, then more likely than not you’re on the right track.

Q4. What do I wish I could improve on more?

A4. Better time management skills, having a stable sleep schedule, no more all night cramming (it’s unnecessary) cut down on my 4 cups of coffee a day habit, actually hit the gym, make more time for studying, find a side gig I can do while I’m at school, finding new ways of doing things, better ways of doing things. All sorts of things I could be improving on.

Nevertheless, the progress, the fact that I’m moving towards something gives me momentum to keep on going.

So how do you know if you’re on the right track?

Give yourself the chance to pick up momentum (it won’t be easy, most of the time it’d be hard) but again, if you really want something you will make it happen. After all, if everyone just settled for “what-is” from Day 1 there would’ve never been any inventions or innovation that improves our lives. So rather than accepting everything as “static” start asking “what-if” and then go and make it happen.