The Time You Put In Adds Up

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How you spent your time adds up

Game of Thrones the TV series has ended. The total hours needed to watch the whole series is about 80 hours. To get the private pilot certification requires about 60 hours of flight time.

By the time you finish season 6 of the series, the other person would have completed the private pilot certification and would have embarked on a new journey in her life. I am not saying whoever watch Game of Thrones has wasted their life. Rather, I would like the reader to think about the time that they have to spend that is not on creating or learning but consuming.

There are many excuses for us not to pursue our dreams. One of them is not having the time. Author Peter Brett wrote his first book while on his daily commute inside the New York subway. Every day he would write about 400 words. Over two years, he has written 100,000 words. After published his first novel, he soon quit his job and become a full-time writer. If he did not write his novel during his daily commute, he would not have been established writer.

How you spent your time, actually adds up. If you improve 1% a day, in 72 days you would have doubled your capability.

However, many of us are not willing to even give themselves a chance to improve 1% a day. To improve, takes effort, commitment and time. Ask yourself, are you willing to put in the time to improve 1% a day?

Do the most important task first. Brian Tracy says is well, “Eat the frog”. Do the most important task of the day. By doing it, it eases up your mind without having to think about it. The more we think about the task, the more we procrastinate then less likely we will get it done.

Find pockets of time. If you are on a long commute, find something to do. When I drive, I listen to Podcast and audio books. I improve by listening. What are you going to do while waiting in life? Blindly scroll through social media? Or pull out a book to read?

Set a standard. Pockets of time of five minutes and 15 minutes are different. As for how you will spend the time is different. Here is how I spent pockets of my time.

Less than five minutes. I would reach out to some friends on my chat application whom I have not contacted for more than 1 month.

More than five minutes. I would read some e-books on my phone. The topics are social media marketing, machine learning and leadership.

Time to relax? Then relax. We are not machine Setting a time to relax is important. Do something that you enjoy and do not feel guilty about it. Set a time, stop when the time is up. Maintain the discipline and fight the resistance of procrastination. Yes. You can watch Game of Thrones.

Everyone is given 24 hours a day. It is up to you how to spend it. How you spend your day is how you spend your life. And it all adds up. Go and get some.

The One Trick to Keep Yourself Motivated to Exercise

I always have a problem staying motivated to workout. I would look for the latest and shiniest workout routine. I would do it for a few weeks and quit. When I do not see the results that I want or the journey got tough, I quit. I find excuses such as no time or do not have the right equipment.

To workout, there no need expensive shoes or gym membership. The body itself can be your own personal gym. There is just no excuse not to work out.
Here is one trick that has been very useful and it works for me. I have been working out non-stop for the past two months. I do not see any sign that I am slowing down or quitting.

Put your workout routine on Social Media. Let all your friends and family see your workout routine. Be it on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. It does not matter.

You would probably get loads of “like” and comments. The feedback will serve as a form of motivation for you.

If you post your workout on a regular basis. Here is what going to happen:

  • People see you as a motivation to hit the gym.
  • People expect you to share your workout.
  • People do not care how light you carried or how short you ran. The important thing is you got your work-out completed.

Last two months since I started to post my workouts, I jogged nearly every other nights. I would workout whenever I find the time. I would be brutally honest with all my workouts, especially the failures and frustrations. I thought I would lose my audience. Instead, I am getting more comments and likes from my social circles. All these feedbacks only serve as fuel to push me further into mine workouts.

In fitness and exercise, there are no shortcuts. Your results are proportional to your effort that you put in.

Social media is a double edge sword. Use it to your advantage to improve your lifestyle.

There Is Always an Option

“I feel trapped in my life.”

“I feel trapped in the relationship.”

“I feel trapped in my job.”

These are all common complaints. I feel that all the time. There are many nights where I whisper to myself that I can do better. I can do so much more. I feel trapped. Like a caged animal who are supposed to run free and live life. If I could have party less. If I could have studied harder. If could have more careful with my money.

There is nothing wrong in feeling trapped. Feeling trapped is our mind telling us that something is not right.

There are only a few things in life that we cannot choose. We cannot choose when and where we are born and die. We cannot choose our family. Other aspects of life are made by choices.

Whenever we feel trapped. There are only two options. We can either choose to quit. Or we can choose to stay. If we choose to quit, keep your heads high and do not look back. If we choose to stay, do your best to make it work.

When do you know to quit? Ask yourself, have you done all you can to make it work? If the answer is yes, and it still not working out, you can quit without any regrets. Whether is a career or relationship, if you have quit, do not let remorse anchor you in the past.

Feeling trapped is fearing the options. Fearing the unknown. What happens if you quit? What happens if you held on? We all make mistakes. We all have to face the consequences of our choices. The sooner we can responsibility of our choices, the sooner we can move on.

Sometimes, your options may not be obvious. Sometimes, your options will only bear fruit after a long time. Nevertheless, keep your eyes on the price and take action every day to drag yourself closer to the goal.

Rapper Coolio who grew in Compton wrote daily for 17 years before getting his first hit – Fantastic Voyage. He grew up in a tough neighbourhood and broke free from its shackles to reach glory. He saw his options and took the hard one. Are you willing to stare into the unknown, however long it may be?

Whenever you feel trapped. It is okay. Take a minute and explore it. Is it really a trap? Or there are options that you can take? Life is tough. Life is cruel. Know what you can change. More importantly, know what you cannot change. Focus on what you can change and take those options.

The Secret to Never Fail in Life Is…

“To never try.”

I am sorry to have click bait you.

I have tried starting a blog about 10 years ago, it failed because I got too lazy to write. I tried to learn Java, I failed because I lack the dedication. I have tried setting up an online store, the only thing that I have completed is setting up the store with nothing on it. I have big dreams, and the dreams made me too afraid to take finish the journey.

You cannot blame me for lack of trying.

Trying is not enough but it is the first step. A try without a sense of commitment will end in failure. As a writer, I can only write one word and followed by another. The complete the journey, I can only take one step followed by another.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQ4yd2W50No

My 100th Post on LinkedIn

This is my 100th post on LinkedIn. You can find my other post on LinkedIn here

This is my LinkedIn 100th post. It has taken me 1.5 years to reach this milestone. This is no celebration, no party but a few lessons that I have learned.

We all started off bad. My writing is terrible. Reading back some of my earlier writings, I am embarrassed by it. In fact, I am tempted to delete most of it. Looking back, it is also the foot print of my journey. I may have stumbled but I kept moving.

Do not get addicted to the numbers. I used to check my post view and numbers of likes few times a day. I get excited if it it reaches the target that I was hoping for. Once I have exceeded my target number, I would chase for the next number. It was like drugs. I keep chasing my next high. It has also limited how I should write and what I should write. Nowadays, I hardly ever look at the numbers.

There will be haters. You cannot please everyone. Someone would take a dislike on what you have written. Instead, focus on those who appreciate what you have written.

Is okay that no one reads. Someone once asked whether I mind that I do not have the readership. I actually do not mind. My writing still has room for improvements. It is okay that no one reads. Without many readers, it allows me to fail and improve from there.

Making new contacts. I actually made new contacts through my writing. We have been keeping in touch ever since. You just need to reach out. You will be surprised by the response.

Be grateful. I am thankful for all the words of encouragements and feedback. It made me more aware of myself and has allowed me to improve as a person and in my writings.

Opportunity knocks. I was offered a few opportunities through Linkedin. Many of which credited that they found me through my writing. Thank you people.

Be observant. To keep my writing fresh and have ideas to shares. I learned to observe life and take mental notes of it. I live a fairly rigid and routine life. Through observation, I actually notice a lot more things that I have taken for granted.

Taking notes. The human mind is a lousy place to hold notes. Especially writing ideas. I cannot live without my notebooks and pen. I have captured and discarded many ideas. If is not because of my notes, I would not have been able to write this much.

There will be bad days. Writer’s block is real. There are nights where I could barely write a sentence. Even if I did produce something, I could not write at a level that I feel confident. When I have no confidence in my writing, it shows. The writing does not lie. I take my hats off to all the writers out there who are able to produce quality writing at a consistent rate.

Let your fingers do the talking. Sometimes, I let my fingers do the talking. I have no structure and no idea. When your fingers cannot stop, you know that it is your heart that is speaking out.

Have Plan B ready. I am not sure how long I can keep my writings on Linkedin. I am also at the mercy of Linkedin. This is why I have started a personal site called www.livingkindfully.com This new platform allows me to write about things that may not be suitable to Linkedin.

Stay humble. Yes. Sometimes, I do get praises from my writing. Never let one popular post get into your head. You are only as good as your last writing. Stay humble and keep producing.

Write about things that you want to read. When I first started, I tried to be as intellectual as possible. I would think of topics that my readers would be interested in reading. Soon I realized I do not have the passion, my writings suffered and I struggled to finish. Now, I would only write about topics that I want to know and I want to read. Writing something that you are passionate or want to read is the best way to engage your readers.

Stop complaining. I am candid and I share many of my sufferings. I told myself that I am just merely expressing myself. Deep down, I am just complaining and whining like a little boy who cannot get his toy. Readers want to be inspired and learned something. See last point, I don’t think I want to read about someone who keeps on complaining about everything.

Write to inspire. Inspire your reader and challenge them to think differently. Inspire them to take action to make a difference.

Have goals. I targeted to write at least 100 posts and I have done it. This is not exactly a good goal. A better goal would be to draft and record ideas on a daily basis. And publish at least one post a week. A goal should focus on the process rather than the end of the journey.

Is about the journey. What I do get out of from this writing experience? Actually a lot. I got to know myself better and I also see the gaps in how I behave. It was the constant writing that lead me up to here.

Have a routine.I cannot wait for inspiration. Inspiration never comes. Just before going to bed, I would fire up Linkedin and start drafting. I write better when it is night. I let the day’s activities inspire my writings.

Never give up. Many times I found myself wanting to throw in the towel. It was difficult. I have no ideas what to write. I have no readership. My kept me coming back is to see how my writings have evolved. Sometimes is two steps forward. Sometimes is one step back. The very least, I am enjoying moments of creativity.

Have idea sex. Learned this from James Altucher. Combine two irrelevant ideas together and let it grow.

Edit, and edit. Your first draft always suck. That is okay. Take as much time as necessary to edit. Never be afraid to delete sentences and paragraph. Keep the sentence short and keep it simple.

It is okay not to finish. As of this writing, I have about 12 drafts. Some of them are more than six months old. Some only have a header or a few sentences. It used to drive me up the wall when I have unfinished draft. It is okay not to finish. It is okay to start a new topic.

It is okay to press delete key. I have lost count the amount of drafts or ideas that I have deleted. You do not need to publish everything that you have written. To get the sentences that you want, you need to write crappy paragraphs.

The journey to reach this milestone has not been easy. I actually get questioned a lot why I am writing. I am doing it more for myself than for the reader. Writing has helped me to keep calm and has allowed me to know myself better. I would like to thank everyone has been with me all the way through this journey.

I hope the number 200th post is not too far into the distant future.

The Story of A Young Girl and Her Plant

It is the end of the school year, a teacher gave her class of students each a pot filled with soil and seed.

“Each of you is unique and special. I have given you each a pot with a seed in it. Each pot represents each one of you. Please look after the plant and grow up like the plant”, said the teacher.

The students got very excited, all of them wondered what kind of plant that the teacher has given them. Many of them did their best to look after the plant during the school holidays.

As days passes, the plant started to sprout. One leaf, two leafs. It is growing!

Litte Debby is one of the students. She is not exactly the brightest of her class but also not the bottom of her class. She has a big heart in helping her friends and teachers. Not a popular girl but has a healthy circle of friends. In short, she is a simple regular girl.

Everyday she would compare the plant’s progress with other kids in the neighbourhood. Many of them mentioned that their plants started to flower. There were all kinds of colored flowers. Red, yellow, pink, purple.

Little Debby listened to the updates with great interests. She often wondered what color of her flower would it be. Right now, there is no sign of any flowers yet and the plant looks healthy.

She would make sure her plant get watered and put under the sun every day.

Time passes, the interest on the teacher’s pot has died down. Many children have stopped sharing their updates. Many of them have even stopped taking care of their plants.

Not little Debby, every morning she would check her plant. Still no flower. Every night, she goes to bed telling herself, maybe tomorrow there will be flower.

Time passes. Still no flower. Little Debby could not take it anymore. She put her plan on the kitchen table and started the cry.

Little Debby’s mom heard Debby crying and came into the kitchen.

“What’s wrong? Debby”, ask the mother.

Little Debby cried even harder, “I did my best to look after the plant that teacher gave me, there is no flower. Other children’s plant has flowers. This is so unfair!”

Debby’s mother take a good look at the plant. After some thoughts, she smiled and said:

“I think we better ask dad to move your plant into a hole outside in our garden soon.”

Wiping tears from her eyes, little Debby ask, “Why? By putting it into a hole outside the house will it flower?”

Ever gentle and loving, Debby’s mother touches Debby’s cheek, “No. Your plant will not have any flowers. Instead, it will grow into a big tree.”

Thoughts to ponder: Not everyone will blossom like a flower. All of us are in an ecosystem called Society. We may not be rich or famous. But we can be a big tree providing shade and support for others.