Gratitude / 112515

Due to the craziness in my life these past 3 months, I have forgotten to keep my little promise. To write a minimum of 5 things I was grateful for (each month). Therefore here are 6 things I am grateful for that has happened these past few months.

  1. Job Interviews. I don’t know about you, but sending job applications is such a DAUNTING process. I mean… you’re basically trying to sell yourself. It has always been a tricky process for me as managers especially really intimidate me. However, I am grateful to have had opportunities these few months to have been considered as an employee and had a chance to exercise my strength in speaking well of myself.
  2. Celebrations- These few months I have had the opportunity to attend balls, dances and festivals as exams ended. Who doesn’t love celebrations right? I attended my first festival and it was sooooooo good. I never knew I’d love it.
  3. Silence – I find that silence is rare. Serenity is rare. Having the time to just sit, contemplate and not let any white noise stop you from reflective on yourself. I find that having ‘me’ time daily is rejuvenating and energizing. Sometimes when you’re caught in a whirlwind of responsibilities you don’t have time for yourself. Like they say – “the quieter you become, the more you hear”.
  4. Internet access – A lot of people now take this for granted. Hell. I don’t. These days, it’s the only means of INSTANT communication. I contact family, friends, employers, university lecturers and so forth. I communicate a lot. It’s also a place for discovery. Discovery of TED talks, youtube videos and music. It’s wonderful when used wisely.
  5. Health – I am grateful for a healthy body. I have been eating less meat lately and IT HAS BEEN SO GOOD. I feel less guilty eating animals. You could say I’m transitioning – to what you may ask? I do not know yet.
  6. Music – thank goodness for music. I never was a type of girl to like just ONE genre of music. I love most types. It just makes me feel happy, during times I believe music speaks to me.

So there you go. I hope you can think of a few things that has made you smile or happy these past few months.

Trust yourself // 10215

Life is unpredictable and each choice you make, will later result in a significant impact whether you acknowledge it or not.

My thoughts for the month of September was that people are going to let you down. I’ve been let down a lot lately – by people who were of much importance in my life. This includes acquaintances, friends, family and most importantly…myself.

You get those days where you feel as if every single person has it in for you. You’re being ridiculed, hated or disliked. That’s what you think right? Well, how much of that is actually true or correct? You’ll never know, but in time, you learn that you only have yourself and you will need to only rely on yourself, and not ANYONE else.

One great thing I’ve learnt in the past month is that, people will let you down, but the only person who can build yourself up, is yourself. Therefore you have to build a solid relationship with your inner self. It’s so freaking hard. I find it so hard to love myself. Surprised? I’m sure I’m not the only one. When you’re a complete perfectionist like I am, nothing below what you expect of yourself is acceptable. You become so harsh on yourself that your self-esteem plummets. And IT. IS. HARD. I haven’t figure that out myself yet. But when we live in a world where people are seeking validation, fame and acceptance through others, it’s hard to feel good about yourself. You lose sight of your aspirations, your dreams, values and your passions. You eventually find yourself in a deep dark tunnel where there’s no end in sight.

But despite the bouts of sadness, I still believe in myself. I want to be heard. I want to be loved. I want to make a difference, even though it looks as if my future is a blur and is not crystal clear yet. I want to love and trust myself. And I guess the most important thing is for…that alone to be a start. To learn to love and care for yourself. With that, I believe you can change the world.

Gratitude // 300815

We can lift ourselves and others as well, when we refuse to remain in the realm of negative thoughts and cultivate within our hearts an attitude of gratitude. – Thomas S. Monson

Often times we find that we are overly self-critical of ourselves and pick out every negative thing about our personality, circumstances and self-appearance. This negativity is then compounded by even more negative thoughts; seeing the worst in the people around us and overall we start to see everything in a dark and cynical perspective.

What might we be lacking here? Confidence? Love? Positivity?

I’ve been wondering why we sometimes find ourselves in this pit of negativity. Perhaps, it may be due to ingratitude. We look for the things we DON’T have, rather than the things we already have. Blessings in disguise.

Sometimes, we overlook the great things we already HAVE in this world. It’s not easy though. We can get caught up looking and dwelling on all the negative things we’ve experienced. It’s a human thing, no doubt. But, if left unattended it can become self-destructive to our soul and being. We all deserve to be loved – to be loved by ourselves first and foremost.

So, from now on… Every month, I will do an appreciation and gratitude post. I will post 10 things I was grateful for that month. I think this will help me see the light, in times where I’ve felt so much darkness in my life. Trust me, we’ve all been there. So, I hope you begin to see the light in your lives too, no matter how hopeless or dark you may feel in THIS moment.

  1. I am grateful for a beautiful home. I am fortunate enough to live in a home where I am safe from the perils of the cold this winter. I have a beautiful view from the balcony- over looking a lake. I live nearby a general practice for when I get sick, a cinema, a mall, a park, a pet store, a beach and so much more. Everything is close by which is so convenient for my family and I. We’re up on this hill along with other houses and this keeps us safe from floods. We have a lovely street where the trees are beautifully aligned and are great for walking my dog – seeing the trees change every season. I have a bed and shelter. It’s just a lovely place to have grown up in.
  2. I am grateful for family. I live in a very, very busy household. There are four of us. Mum, Dad, myself and my younger sister. We are all very busy! But despite our busy lives, we make time for each other always. I am grateful for my mother’s diligence, patience and resilience. I am grateful for my dad’s hard work and humour of which makes life joyful. I am grateful for my sister’s love and peace she brings to the home. And like any other family, we have our days. But I will always be grateful for our togetherness and bond that is undeniably strong. And I am grateful for parents for instilling values and teachings that has made me the person I am now.
  3. I am grateful for food. I love myself some home cooking! It does NOT beat meals you eat at restaurants. It’s just divine. Especially in winter. Mum and Dad make the best hearty meals that just melt in your mouth and give your tastebuds a reason to PARTY. I am grateful my belly is filled every day and that I am never left starving.
  4. I am grateful for inspiring and goal-orientated friends. I am grateful to have travelled and moved because now I know why I did so. To meet such extraordinary friends. They’ve all accomplished so much so far and I love how we all build each other up rather than drag each other down. When you surround yourself with like minded people, you end up achieving so much and becoming a more positive, goal-driven person.
  5. I am grateful for education. It’s my passion. I think education is so important and I am so glad to be studying in a University of which I am proud to be studying at. I have learnt so much and I hope to accomplish BIG things one day with the knowledge I am gaining throughout my studies. Education really makes you think outside of the box and you see the world in such a different light. I will never get tired of acquiring knowledge and learning.
  6. I am grateful for sunshine. Whilst I am writing this, I look outside and see beautiful sunrays hitting my whole town. It’s so good to have great weather like this at Winter. I am grateful to step outside and feel the sun on my face and gather my Vitamin D. I love the SUN!
  7. I am grateful to be healthy and living. I am so fortunate to have a healthy body and being able to have no limits to what my body can do. I love adventures. This includes hiking, running, horse riding and so forth. I love to challenge myself and my body. I am grateful for my health!
  8. I am grateful for my little best friend Coco. She’s my Maltese dog. She is so cheeky and naughty but she is a wonderful companion during tough days. She listens, hahaha. She is my companion when I want to go for walks, for when I want to nap, for when I want to play active games in the back yard. She is always there. And we LOVE food.
  9. I am grateful for the Scriptures. I am Christian and belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saint. More commonly known as Mormons. I am so deeply grateful to be a part of this church. I am grown so much spiritually. And I would not see things the way I do now if it weren’t for this church. It has made me a better person.
  10. I am grateful for travelling. I am fortunate enough to have lived in the Philippines, the United Kingdom and Australia. I’ve lived in each country for years. I have learnt so much from moving and I have met all kinds of people. I am grateful to have developed a love for travel and adventure. I think you get to have so many invaluable experiences and learn to see things from a global scale. I cannot wait to expand my journey to other places one day.

What I Learnt in My First Year at University

Reflection time!

It was the most stressful time towards the end high school. Not only was I going through teenage years full of stress, confusion and social anxiety, there was no doubt that I was anxious about getting into University. I was quite conscientious, determined and competitive at school. This enabled me to be accepted into an early admissions program – meaning I got into University regardless of my final mark. This lessened the amount of stress I was feeling at the time. Before getting the early admissions acceptance letter, I honestly felt that if I was not going to do well, I was bound to be homeless or something like that. I thought that I was headed for failure and that I was not going to get anywhere in life. Little did I know that the hard work and persistence paid off. And I was off to University. I was so fixed in the idea that the ONLY way to success was through University and that was all. University was an emotional roller coaster ride for me. I got even MORE confused. I was unsure and let the uncertainty get to me. Little was my knowlege back then I have learnt so much therefore I thought I’d share my personal experience of my first year of University.

1. The learning environment is completely different. 

High school was very structured. A curriculum was set out for you, and at times I believe you are spoon fed by some teachers. You get lots of time with teachers and a timetable was provided for you. University is different. It is a very independent environment. You create a timetable that suits you. Instead of more one on one time with teachers, you email lecturers and tutors for academic advice. And the structure of education differs from each faculty, course and subjects. Transition from high school to University is different for everyone, regardless of how ‘smart’ you were considered in school. My first year of transitioning was STRESSFUL. But I have learnt a lot and it was worth it.

2. You encounter people from all walks of life.

In high school you are basically kept with the same year group from grade 7 to grade 12 (In Australia). Segregation into clicks are formed due to this. You stick with your group of friends and don’t really get the chance to truly get to know other individuals from different groups. Unless you happen to choose the same classes then you just might meet those other people. At university, the social aspect is completely different. Everybody seems to be on the same page, and it becomes a place of which fosters engagement and interaction with different kinds of people. Being an introvert, it definitely brought out the ‘outgoing’ in me.

3. You may discover what you TRULY like and dislike.

I don’t know about you, but the course I did in my first year is NOT the course I am doing now. I truly believed that that course I did was the one for me. But it was like hell. I thought I’d love the course but it turns out I didn’t. It took me that year to realize what I wanted. I then transferred and I am now doing the course that I love! I believe that we are all still learning. We are all still discovering. Whatever we do at University, TAFE or through other endeavours is for our learning. Although I transferred, I still learnt a lot from that year. I learnt that I did not want to do what I did as a long term profession. I learnt that I had a passion for something else, which was health, nutrition and education. What you enjoyed when you were younger may not be the case when you are older. So don’t be frightened. Find your passions! And if you feel lost and confused, don’t be disheartened. Try as many things as you can till you find the right ones. Be wise about it but also don’t be afraid to try new things. This is the way to personal progression.

4. Productivity and Time is more important than how good you look.

In high school I used to value appearance a lot. I would spend hours doing my hair and makeup to school and care about how my uniform looks etc… It was a lot of time wasted. I still do care about my appearance but I care more about simple, clean presentation that worrying if my eyeliner is good enough. Saying this, I love fashion. I love make up, but I have gotten to understand that makeup is to enhance beauty not conceal beauty. I used to put so much make up on in high school and envied the girls who looked all glammed up at school. That doesn’t matter now. In my first year, I had no time to spend hours on end making myself look the prettiest. I just focused on wearing something neat and simple. My make up natural and hair tidy. Some days I don’t wear makeup at all. It really does NOT matter. Learn to focus on the less vain things in life. Less stress.

5. You learn to be self-reliant and self-sufficient.

In my first year at University, I really learnt to take matters to my own hands. There were times I felt so lost, confused and bewildered. I thought to myself “Everyone knows what they want to do, whereas I have no career direction anymore”. I felt disheartened. I felt like I already failed! But I learnt to keep going, use University resources like Careers Advisors and Counselling of which helped me greatly! I also learnt the art of email etiquette and contacting different people at University. Ultimately, you learn independence. And such things cannot be learnt by being spoon fed and given everything you need on a silver platter.

6. Budgeting and Saving

University students are known to be short in terms of money. Why? Textbooks are unnecessarily expensive. Transport is NOT free. And you have to pay for food. And I get hungry at Uni ALL THE TIME. Fortunately I get allowances from parents all the time. I never really had to rely on anything else BUT my parents. I work now, which is a bonus, and when it comes to textbooks, I have refrained from purchasing new textbooks. You learn to be wise with money. Buy second hand textbooks, use shuttle buses of which are free, or even walk! And lastly you learn to make your own sandwiches and wraps.

7. You get what you worked for

University is a place of learning and you can only achieve good marks if you work for it. You cannot expect to go to Uni and think, I can do this by doing the minimum and just passing by a percent. You get what you deserve. The more effort you exert, the more you get out of it and the higher the marks. Of course there will be times when you studied to your potential but did not get the mark you desired. Don’t be disheartened by this. Focus on your strengths and improve your weaknesses. Don’t disregard them because one day they will become STRENGTHS. Luckily on my first year, I got a lot of distinctions and credits. I had subjects where I did not do AS well, but you know that next time you’ll do better and work harder.

8. There are other pathways to get to where you want to be

University is NOT for everyone. Some people decide to go to TAFE, take on apprenticeships, go to the army, go to a fashion school, a business school etc… There are so many different avenues to success. University is not the ONLY one. Some people don’t get to University for a certain reason. There are also many pathways to University, no joke! I learnt that anyone can study at any time. I’ve had students aged 40-50 attend the same classes as me. It’s all good. You will have your time, and you will have your place, University or somewhere else.

9. You decide how you shape and mould yourself to be the person you want to be

I learnt that you can have opportunities to study abroad, take on volunteering opportunities, networking, job opportunities, sports, wellbeing and all sorts of extra curricular activities to widen your experiences. Grab those opportunities. It will not only make you employable, but these experiences are vital to personal growth and happiness.

10. Being organized and prepared is crucial. 

Being systematic and organised is essential to retain that block of information in that head of yours. Being messy only makes you stressed and frustrated. I learnt to keep everything neat and always be one step ahead. Read your lectures early, use those extra resources, get to exams or appointments extra early. These are skills you will be thankful you learned earlier. Your education is important. And staying on top will get you ahead of most of your peers.

Whether you’re in highschool, university/college, gaining a diploma or having a gap year. I wish you the best on your endeavours. Your first time in anything can be hard. But you will definitely benefit from it. I assure you.

Good luck my friend.

Unity //10715

I have noticed that there has been much debate in regards to changes in legislations and beliefs on Marriage, love, religion and so forth. It is quite disheartening that many people have involved themselves in heated debate, challenging one another and putting one another’s beliefs down. Everyone is entitled to their opinion and I believe both parties must respect each others opinion, especially if they differ. There can still be peace if we put pride aside and become humble. What I believe may differ from the next person, but that does not mean we cannot be friends or ‘hate’ one another. We can still be kind, loving and compassionate towards them. I do not believe we should impose our individual beliefs to others either. We can only stand up for what we believe in – in a manner that is respectful and with dignity.

Let us be kind to one another, despite our differences. I know we all make mistakes – I do. All the time. But it is when we become aware and humble ourselves that we can truly find peace and harmony through perilous times such as these – when society is slowly dividing and opposing one another.

The world changes constantly and dramatically, but God, his commandments and promised blessings do not change. L. TOM.PERRY.

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Thoughts // 150615

Somewhere between heartaches and waiting comes another chance to be found by someone who can show you that you are not just an option but the ONLY choice…

A few months ago, I had a very intriguing conversation with a good friend about love. And something he said back then still resonates with me now – causing me to think…

He said… “Times have changed. Gone are the days where men were indeed truly chivalrous…when having a family was the one thing desired the most and monogamy was with one person for life, rather than one at a time.”

These were thought provoking words. Yes, times have changed greatly. But, for some reason, I’m cleaving onto that small hope that maybe…just maybe, there is still something or someone worth fighting for.

Aspirations

I don’t know about you, but I think… a lot. And that is just an understatement. I think about everything. My pile of ‘things to do’ grows ever increasingly each day. I discover more and more things and I build this desire to somehow change the world or contribute to it, somehow.

One down fall of this is worrying too much…

Worrying that you aren’t good enough, or that you don’t know where to start!

This is something I am still figuring out myself. I believe that by doing little things each day, it will accumulate to something bigger and greater. The next thing you know is that you’re so close to your goal, dream or destination. I guess it just takes one GIANT leap of faith. Sometimes we often dwell too much on the  hardships ahead. This takes a chunk of valuable time that could have been used to do something amazing.

So, let’s do this together. Whatever you’re hoping to improve in your life, I hope you achieve it by doing small things each day to get to that ‘goal’. Never letting anyone or even yourself get in your way. I always remind myself to never let fears or distractions deprive me from happiness (which comes from personal achievement). Oh, and don’t forget to do so in a cheerful countenance!

‘By small and simple things great things come to pass’ Alma 37: 6-7