Monthly Archives: May 2011

If you play with fire

… you might not get burned.

Sometimes the fear of fire is worse than the actual danger of it. This doesn’t mean that you should be stupid or underestimate it’s destructive powers, but you shouldn’t live in fear of it either. A little mindfulness can go a long way in judging whether something is really worth the risk.

If you’re special (and all of us are) then you can work out how to be smart yet:

  • crazy
  • adventurous
  • fearless

The worse thing to do is make excuses (“it’s not safe to go there…” , “I don’t know if I’m good enough…”, “what will people think of me?“) and then let those excuses rule your life. Living in fear pushes you further back into your comfort zone, and you know you’re in your comfort zone when everything around you and everything you do is void of:

  • challenge
  • chance
  • danger

And if you stay there too long, you’ll just keep wallowing around in a barren land of boring. No, seriously, there’s a whole world out there waiting for you to take it on and if you’re just going to hide behind a wall of excuses, you’ll miss out on some amazing things, and not to mention you’re wasting your one chance to make a difference – to make your life really worth living.

I know that there’s something you want to do, but you’re scared to. Something or someone is telling you “no” or “you shouldn’t/couldn’t!” .

I know this because everybody has a dream being trampled on like that. Even the greatest men and women in history had the same feelings as you.

But the difference is that they weren’t scared of getting burned. Are you?

Related Posts

My adventure in Asia begins

By the time you read this post, I’m going to be here:

This is Mt. Fuji, the tallest mountain in Japan.

To go there has always been a dream of mine, but due to various circumstances I haven’t been able to until now. Now that I’m finished with my studies, I’m taking this opportunity to do some more travelling.

I will be starting my mini tour of Asia from Tokyo, from which I will be flying to South Korea. I’ll spend a few days in Seoul, then I’ll be flying again from Japan to Thailand or Vietnam and then cruising a little while in Hong Kong before going back to England.

My plans are a bit complicated, and I’m going to be spending a lot of time laying back on various buses/planes/trains/boats, but I’m so excited. The journey towards these places are some of the best parts of travelling, and with my trusty camera, Kindle and some good music on me, there’s not much that can go wrong.

I’ve scheduled a couple of posts, so don’t worry! I won’t have internet connection most of the time, but I’ll log on when I can. Follow me on Twitter for updates of what I’m up to!

Wish me luck!


The Best Investment You’ll Ever Make

If someone said to you that they would give you $1000 to spend in any way you like, but with only one rule, would you listen to what they had to say?

The rule is: you must spend the money on making your dreams come true.

Want to play?

The trick is, all of us are already playing this game. We might not be getting free money from a stranger off the street, but if we’re managing to earn money, then the same rules apply, don’t they? Except this time, you have a time limit too.

We can spend a portion of our money on unavoidable or necessary costs such as the cost of living, but the rest? We’re free to do whatever we want with it, and unfortunately too much of it gets wasted on things that have nothing to do with our dreams.

Is buying a fancy car your dream? Then buy it. But most people need something more than just stuff, to do something worthwhile.

The next time you’re about to spend a respectable sum of money, or hours/days of your life, ask yourself: is it going to get you closer to your amazing ambition you want to achieve before you die? Or make you a better person or the world a better place?

If it doesn’t then stop.

It’s absolutely vital to pause every now and again to give some thought into what time and money mean to you. Money itself isn’t evil, only greed for it is. It doesn’t make you a bad person if you have a lot of it, it all depends on how you earned it and how you will spend it.

And realizing that you only have a limited amount of time isn’t being melancholic, it’s being mindful of the truth.

Your resources and time are too valuable. Life is too precious. You are too special.

Investing in your dreams is the best money you’ll ever spend.

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‘No’ the difference…

A lot of people mix up travelling with ‘escaping’. They think that people who travel are trying to run away from bad things in their lives, or bad things that will/might happen to them like work, debt or demanding bosses.

But the problem is, it’s not simply enough to ‘run away’. That’s what a vacation is for. Real travelling isn’t running away, it’s running towards something – something new, different, mind-blowing and world-rocking, things that challenge the way we think people are or should be. Travellers may not have much, but what they gain is invaluable, even if you can’t see it.

And the same can be said of minimalism too. When we get rid of stuff, we’re not simply ‘getting rid of’ a piece of furniture or clothing. It’s not about the negative, but the positive side of the coin too. When we refuse to buy something we don’t need, we’re welcoming something better than a second car into our lives – the least being the chance to give  back in our own way, no matter how small, to Mother Earth and to fellow human beings.

a case for ‘no’

Despite what most people think, saying ‘no’ can open up as many possibilities as ‘yes’ can.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m always looking for new opportunities and when I feel it’s right to say ‘yes’, great things can happen. Projects get  started, I get to meet new people, ideas get pushed into reality and so on.

But the opposite is also true – saying no can be just as important. We don’t have unlimited time in our lives, or resources on earth. We have to stop saying yes to more and more stuff and start saying no to over-consumption, pollution and debt. ‘No’ can be a powerful weapon as a minimalist’s best friend.

‘No’ gets a bad rep because it’s mistakenly only thought of as a door-closer. But if you think about the kind of things ‘no’ unleashes – time, freedom, resources – you’ll see that in most cases, ‘no’ is not the opposite of ‘yes’, just it’s (sometimes more practical) counterpart.

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How you see

Life doesn’t get better or worse, just how you see it does.

We all experience bad things in our lives, some worse than others. Some problems we have are minor and some are quite life changing. But whilst we’re concentrating on the our failures, mistakes or heck even natural disasters, sometimes we forget that good things can also shape who we are.

It’s easier to focus on the bad things because they stir up drama and anger which are easier to build upon. Problems pushes all of our buttons and if we make them out to be worse than they really are, it can make other people feel sorry for us.

It’s easy to believe that unpleasant things define who we are, makes us stronger people, but that’s not always the case. It’s how we deal with them, and how we move on which really builds character.

Focussing on good things that happen to us, no matter how little they may be, cultivates a positive attitude that is the basis of all the good things we really want in life, reliable friends and family, amazing opportunities, a job we love and most importantly, self confidence.

I’m not saying all you have to do is put on some rose-tinted glasses and everything would be fine. Just that we should step back and be aware of which side, the good or the bad, that we are placing the most emphasis on and thinking about the kind of effects it has on the rest of our lives.

If you think about all of the lonely superstars who appear to have everything vs. kids who live in village huts with smiles on their faces, you might be able to see that it isn’t our financial circumstances that decide how good life is. Our attitude towards it is worth more than a million bucks if we use it right.

Follow my shenanigans on Twitter.