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Articles tagged “inspiration

Photo by Gary Elsasser.
Photo by Gary Elsasser.

Hong Kong – A City for Dreams

Posted on April 14, 2014

When I land in a city I love, I feel nervous. My countenance turns eager as I try my best to drink in every second, knowing it can’t last forever. After the raw nerves settle, I become thankful for the sweet days I have and do my best to see, to experience, and to pocket away gems of inspiration for the future. A few weeks ago, I experienced this when I travelled to Hong Kong.

To me, Hong Kong is magic. The energy, the attitude, the frantic pace of the city will forever be charming. In most cities, I appear impatient, always trying to get ahead a little faster. “Don’t people know there are things to do, places to see?” I joke. There’s no need to explain this to residents of Hong Kong. Whether waiting for the exit escalator at the MTR station or simply walking down the street, they are the ones challenging my usually most-aggressive walking style and veering me out of the way. It’s a nice feeling, meeting a global counterpart.

In an unfamiliar city, there are certain aspects that are grounding. No matter where I am in the world, I always find inspiration in skylines. Their vast, expansive nature always awakes feelings of wonder in me. Little surprise then after a meeting in Tsim Sha Tsui  that I couldn’t resist walking across the road to the Promenade and staring across Victoria Harbour at the tiny lit-up boxes on the Island’s skyscrapers. Powerful lives and ideas packed together so densely. I wondered, what was being created at that very moment? Perhaps the joy of cities can be encapsulated as places where anything can happen. Cities are places for dreamers, both young and old.

In Sheung Wan.

In Sheung Wan.

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Photo via flickr, @aigle_dore
Photo via flickr, @aigle_dore

The Pursuit of Inner Solitude

Posted on November 2, 2013

The growth of cities have seen the shrinking of work spaces and living spaces. As more people attempt to capitalise on where opportunities are to be found, cities get painfully packed. Industrious planners have toiled for years to compact as many brilliant minds as possible into smaller square feet of space. Without a hinterland to run to, it could be difficult to find a quiet place to muse, to work and ponder.

However, escaping inwards could be an answer to find a quiet space within where you can come to yourself, clarify your thoughts, or just sit in awareness. This ‘retreat in daily life’ can be taken in a closed room, or a noisy bus. Nonetheless, free meditation support groups have asserted that if one can achieve just ten minutes of stillness, it is beneficial for rooting oneself in the causes that one lives for, gives greater impetus, increased motivation to strive for the end goal you have in mind, or achieving a greater awareness of self.

An increasing number of youths have also embraced meditation or forms of meditation as a compass to guide them through life. Even though, doing nothing in the midst of meditation is one of the hardest things to achieve in our rapidly paced, urgent world. Never mind also that attention spans are becoming shorter (see article by Daylon Soh—Death to Brainstorming.)

25 year old Kiyoko Ong, a member of Singapore Soka Association said, “Most importantly, it teaches me to respect all human beings as everyone has buddhahood or Buddha nature in them. That’s the first step towards compassion.”

Upon examining some religions and belief systems, one finds that meditation, or some form of pursuing silence, quiet, reflective thinking, is the basis of most of the worlds’ oldest religions. Here’s a look at how different belief systems embrace the pursuit of inner solitude.

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How To Love What You Do When You Don’t Know What To Do

Posted on May 22, 2013

7am. I wake. I find myself stumbling around for the Snooze button. I hesitate to open my eyes fully. And then I realise, it’s Monday. My head collapses back on the pillow willingly.

There’s always a point in our lives where we have felt that. We dread it. We mope about it. We complain about it. We over react when there’s cake in the office because it means I can stop work and enjoy some indulgent eating. And we jump for joy when we can get a three day weekend.

Previously, the motivation for work meant food available consistently on the table or new clothes to buy for that one time of the year. Your focus is your children. To have them grow up healthy and more educated than you. Because living enough was everything.

Then it progressed to you taking over your family’s business and keeping the family name and reputation in tact. You have seen and understand the tears and sweat of your parents’ hard work so you try to carry it on to make them proud. Working hard to sustain not only your family but providing an excess of space and money for them. Because living more comfortably meant a happier life.

Now, we have been swallowed by the luxury of excess and choices that we begin to question the work we have been told to take over. We realise that although we need to keep working hard to keep our luxuries in tact, we wonder if these items make us happy.

There’s a shift in focus. What is the meaning of my work? Where do I see myself going? Do I want maximum glamour to upkeep my life in this manner? Is it really worth it?

Six months ago, I was back from being gone from my home country for a long period of time. It was time to find a new job. Time to make a clear path of my work life was going to be. I was largely in a state of confusion and panic as I felt like my path was not where I wanted to go. And so it began. Reading articles ranging from How to Find Fulfilling Work to tracing every career step of my favourite designers, to collecting numerous quotes and phrases that helped spur me in my quest to find my way, I’ve decided to list a few of the advice I’ve followed and my conclusions from this period of a somewhat non sequitur journey.

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