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Book Read in 2012 and Lessons Tips or quotes that strike me

One of my 2012 (resolution) Project Actions was to read at least 1 book a month. I manage to read 27 books and wish to share some of the “wisdom” I get reading these books.

love-book

Listed in no particular order:

The naked Warrior, Pavel Tsasouline

With high body tension and power breathing we can greatly improve performance in all movements.

How to Learn Any Language, Barry Farber

It’s okay to learn several languages at the same time. When learning a language it’s important to use all dead time to work on the language. It’s become much easier when we see it like a game.

Martial Arts Reader, Randy F. Nelson

“Both ancient and modern martial artists spoken of peace, harmony, and reconciliation as representing the very highest levels of their arts.”

History of Julius Caesar by Jacob Abbott

“To write and speak well gave a public man great influence in those days.”

“Courage and enterprise, in fact, ought not to be expected of the rich; they are the virtues of poverty. “

The Power of Habit, Charles Duhigg

“One paper published by a Duke University researcher in 2006 found that more than 40% of the actions people performed each day weren’t actual decisions, but habits.”

“Habits never really disappear.”

A Sociopath Beside Me, Junie Moon

“It has been estimated that one in twenty-five Americans has shown sociopathic behaviour. This is the sociopath’s greatest advantage. He is invisible.”

“Sociopath does not follow societies “norms”, and is incapable of playing by the rules. He has no rules, nor can he recognize other’s rules. He does not have a conscience. Thus, he has no brake on socially unacceptable behaviour, no boundary past which he dare not go. The sociopath lacks a moral compass. He cannot experience guilt. He knows no remorse. His life is simply endless sinister manipulation of others to feed his own ego.”

“When you see something that doesn’t seem quite right, it probably is not right. Once more, our best defence is awareness and willingness to question.”

World War Z, Max Brooks

“In times of extreme adversity man can be brought to his knees but also show his resilience.”

The Beginning of the End, Manel Loueiro and Pamela Carmell

You can’t hit and run zombie with a car without getting badly injure.

Mud, Sweat and Tears, Bear Grylls

Climb Everest is way much harder than what I imagine, but so much people have made it again all odds and other have died trying.

Adventure is where you find it. Always be prepared in wild.

Bear Grylls eat normal food with his teammate when shooting man VS wild.

Outlaw tome 1-4, Angus DOnals

The ways history facts, tales and the story mix is fantastic in these books.

Take care first of the one in your close circle.

A song of Ice and Fire tome 2-6, George R.R. Martin

Power resides in perception, and is as volatile as it.

Burn Notice: the Fix, Tod Goldberg

When you make plan, expect to rework them several time.

Burn Notice: The End Game, Tod Goldberg

Yacht race are way too easy to cheat. Never bet money on it.

To My Sons: Lessons for the Wild Adventure Called Life, Bear Grylls

The book is a collection of advises.

“Have a few close friends who you see often—they friendship matters more than having many shallow acquaintance.”

“Always look people on the eye.”

The Hunger Games tome 1-3, Suzanne Collins

To save a life people must sometime risk their own.

Ender’s Game, Orson Scott Card      

Don’t underestimate children. They see things from different angles and thus have interesting insight.

There is no referential in sapce.

Total Recall; My Unbelievable True Life Story, Arnold Schwarzenegger

Big challenge move people.

Cuban cigars smell like fertilizer.

Sets goals, take risk and work hard.

The Bourne Identity, Robert Ludlum

Best spy book I have ever read.

Test everything and assume nothing.

What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast, Laura Vanderkam

They track Time and most important of all they have good productive morning habit.

 
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Posted by on February 6, 2013 in Articles, Long term

 

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Project 365 in 2013

2013Project

Stepping into another brand new year, with so many things ahead of us, how could we miss the momentum and the promises of new year resolutions!!?

With our previous post, A new year, a new pair of eyes seeing the world!, we are revisiting and refreshing our on-going projects from 2012 and starting new ones for 2013.

By chance, I have read a brilliant post: “Launch A 365-Day Project In 2013” by Marelisa Fabrega. In her post, she encourages and offers 25 ideas for 365 day project. Some ideas enhance and better our lives, like spending 1 hour or some time everyday with our love (wife, kids), or meditate, exercise or take a walk every day for a year; some ideas focus on create and realize our goals and dreams, i.e. spend 1 hour on writing novel, posts or start own business. There are also some unusual and fun ideas like documenting 2013 with a photo a day, cooking a recipe dish a day or talk to someone new everyday….

No matter what comes to your mind for your 365 day project, enjoy and fun with it 🙂 Take the project from a positive, serving a better you (in relationship, health, wealth, career…) perspective and enriching your every day life. It’s important that what you have chosen to do for the coming 364 day is (are) exactly what you want and strongly desire for; because it takes lasting commitment of 364 days to make it successful!

Hsing’s 365 day project – (a) eating a fruit every day for a year and (b) 15 minutes meditation per day;
Loic’s 365 day project – (a) TBD.

 
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Posted by on January 2, 2013 in Articles

 

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Shift Your Focus on Something that Best Works for You!!

In life, what we place our focus on is where we experience our emotions and where our energy is invested!

The ability to “Shift Your Focus” is a very powerful and useful technique in life. No one is promised with a wonderful, easy and smooth life. Nor anyone is promised with a harsh, laboring and bumpy life. Some believe destiny is pre-meditated; some believe destiny is in our hands. No matter which one you believe, one always have the choice on WHAT TO FOCUS ON in life. What we place our focus on, is where we experience our emotions and where our energy is invested. If we focus on the negative emotions, our energy is spent on experiencing the negative emotions. In this case, why not turn the situation around and optimize the advantages, choose to see and focus on the beautiful, positive sides of life which make us experiencing the positive emotions and spend our energy more productively on generating more positive energy?

Choose “What Works” for us to achieve a life we desire. Remember we have the ABSOLUTE CHOICES in the ways we want to present ourselves to the world.

When things happened out of expectation, people tends to response more negatively than positively, consciously or unconsciously. When things went wrong, it is easier to blame others than taking up the blame. When a child wants to try something new, it is easier for the parents to tell(demotivate) the child by saying, “.. listen to me, I can tell you that it will not work..”, so that the parents may in the name of protection, not to worry for their child’s failure. At home, when a wife expresses her intention to go back to work place, it is easier for a husband to say(demotivate), “..you haven’t work for a long while, I don’t think people will take you..”, instead of taking the time encouraging, preparing and supporting his wife’s emotional needs. We may be the one response negatively, consciously or unconsciously; we may also be the one receiving the negative feedback.

We have no controls over others, what they will say, what they will do or the impacts they bring to us. However we have the choice to decide on which part of what we hear that we would like to accept and allowing which part of impacts into our lives. When an event happens, the event is neutral. It is our beliefs, perceptions and experiences highlights certain details for us to focus on and attach the relevant emotions onto the events. In other words, if we are not consciously aware and let our negative beliefs, perceptions and experiences leading us to FOCUS negatively on the event, we will EXPERIENCE and even magnify the negative emotions, as well as spending our ENERGY on incubating the negative energy pool.

Why do we choose to focus on things which do not serve our well being in life?

  • What will our life be if we only CHOOSE something that works best for us and leaving no room for negative thoughts or feelings?
  • What will we be, as an individual, if we FOCUS on something that nurtures and energizes us, instead of wearing and tiring us down?
  • What will your marriage be if instead of thinking if I am marrying the right person, FOCUS on if I am being the right person in this marriage?
  • What will our kids be if we show our strong faith in them and continuously giving them the positive security, encouragement and support?

We may go on forever to explore the possibilities of “What if…” as much as we like. But we will never know until we put some actions into it!!

Let’s do an exercise right away! Take a current situation that you are worrying or afraid of. Reflect in parallel with my example. Loic is going to see a dentist in 2 weeks time. He is afraid of the sound of and the pain caused by a drill. (Actually me too!) First thing we need to realize is that FEAR is not absence of BRAVE. It’s just that we FOCUS so much on FEAR that we forget BRAVE is also there! They are co-exist! The more Loïc FOCUS on FEAR, the more scary and painful experiences he will anticipate and EXPERIENCE, so all his ENERGY will be spent on worrying and in fear. So if Loic tries to SHIFT THE FOCUS to BRAVE, to EXPERIENCE the positive reassuring of things will go well and spend ENERGY on something that best work for him, i.e. understand what the dentist will do, ensure dentist performs proper anesthesia, focusing on the ultimate benefits, a good tooth with no pain after the event, these may help to reduce and control the FEAR. Another effect way to SHIFT THE FOCUS is to focus on the beautiful dentist assistant 😛

Another recent example is a heart-breaking event from a friend of mine. After the break-up, her focus is entirely on “What’s wrong with me?”. Obviously she continues to experience the emotions of being sad, rejected, abandoned and inadequate; not to mention her energy is invested in lashing herself and on how to be a better girlfriend (for the man who did not appreciate who she is). If she CHOOSES to FOCUS on “It’s no one’s fault and nothing wrong with anyone. Things happen. I am hurt and I don’t like the situation. However I did give my best efforts in this relationship. Now I value who I am and how much I worth, despite the outcome of the relationship. If this relationship does not serve for us anymore, it is better to end sooner than later. I want to learn from the relationship, not let the relationship demotivates me.” In this case, even the negative emotions are still remain, but at least the the emotions are not being magnified and her energy will be spent more on how do I heal and encourage myself out of the situation faster.

Let’s Shift Your Focus on Something that Best Works for You!!

References:
Be the Master of Your Own Beliefs!
Tony Robbins: Why we do what we do, and how we can do it better

 
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Posted by on February 17, 2012 in Articles, Thoughts

 

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New Year “Resolutions” –> turn into “Project Actions”!!

Very often at the beginning of the year, we spend quite amount of time drafting and declaring our new year resolutions. We are fully charged for the actions ahead!! We start with great enthusiasm; and as the days go by, momentum declines, distractions step in and we start to procrastinate…. Sometimes we even forget about their existence for some while. By the end of the year, we realize it is too late to achieve any of the resolutions….

Perhaps you are doing better than what I have described above. Maybe you have achieved all or few of the resolutions set up at the beginning of the year and forgone or modified a few during the year. It’s all in the past now 🙂 What and how you did last year does not dictate how you will be and achieve this year! Set the score to zero and start new! It is more important that you are going to make a difference in this year, 2012!!

I would like to invite you to examine the “Resolutions” you will or have set for this year so far, take deep thoughts and consider the following:

    1. Do your resolutions mean something significant to you? Use the “3 layers of Ask Why vs. Reasoning” technique to assess the purposes and reasons behind the resolutions. Because only the truly, strongly desired resolution will last till the end. Your resolution has to be meaningful to you!

    2. Instead of having and calling it “Resolution“, rename it to “Project Action“! It is no longer just a statement of what you are going to achieve, but also includes the actions you are going to take, i.e. setting milestones, checking points, defining WHO will be involved, WHAT actions need to be taken, WHEN to do what, HOW and WHERE to do them. And don’t forget always keep in mind, the WHY you are doing it!!

    3. Resolution is to make our lives better; not to confine where or what we should be or to de-motivate us. Anytime during the year, when you realize you are procrastinating, off track or the resolution is not so applicable anymore, just BE FLEXIBLE and modify the resolutions. How can we just modify ‘resolutions’ that like?? That’s why it is certainly easier to have ‘resolution’ renamed to ‘actions’. Don’t forget, it is the ultimate significant goal we are trying to achieve, not the ‘resolution’.

    Let me explain further by taking an example: Since the kidney infection I had in Q1 2011, my health was deteriorated. It is highly important for me in 2012 to rebuild and bring my health at least back to what it was (while in good health). The ultimate reason and goal is to be healthy. My ‘Resolutions’ are to (1) exercise at least 5 hours a week by going to gym, (2) eat 1 fruit a day and (3) have 8 hours sleep every day. When I notice I am not going to gym that often due to spending more time with kids during the weekend, I start to feel I am failing my ‘resolutions’. So, if I rename ‘resolution’ to ‘action’, it will be instead of dropping the original planned ‘Action’, I may flexibly, without a feeling of failing, modify to another action which leads me to the same ultimate result, i.e. “taking the kids out for sport or hiking…”. In this way, I keep on heading to my ultimate goal to be healthy and yet be flexible in the methods, means, channels that take me there!

In 2012, both of us have few resolutions, oops! It’s “Project Actions” 🙂 All of them meant something to both of us! It seems even to ourselves we have lots to challenge ourselves for! But life is too short, if we don’t start now, then when??

Follow our 2012 (Resolutions) Project Actions and Progress!!

 
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Posted by on January 5, 2012 in Articles, Thoughts

 

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My No TV week with Many Things I did in return …

Wow… This weekly challenge is harder than I have expected! On average, I spent about 5 hours a week on TV or streaming. That is if I was not on a TV Series Pilgrimage, where I would have spent the whole weekend watching +-14 episodes of the full season in one go. (Luckily, this only happens about 3 times a year)

Happened to be in this same week of “NO TV“, I have been waiting for two episodes from my two favorite TV series, “The Mentalist” and “Criminal Minds” (the episodes have been postponed 2 weeks due to American Thanks Giving and …). So I really did put some mental efforts, self-control and encouragement to keep myself away from the temptation! It’s like the more I am constraining myself from it, the more I want it! A human weakness which exists from the start of the creation… can’t help it!

With ‘NO TV‘, I have noticed, all of a sudden, I have many more hours! I did some catching up in my study (Retail Management), blogging (“BucketListChallenge” and “To-Live-Is-To-Create“); a painting for my friend who has just opened a breakfast corner (see below); spend quality time with love ones; prepare X’mas presents and read a book!

My Painting

I feel very full-filled at the moment after accomplishing much more than I set out to at the beginning 🙂 I am very much looking forward to tomorrow when I may enjoy my long waited two episodes 😛 And certainly, going forward, with the benefits I have evidently received with ‘NO TV‘, I am willing to cut down my TV hours and number of my TV pilgrimages per year.

* The book I read was I feel Bad about my neck, written by Nora Ephron. She is also the creator of various romantic comedy films, i.e. “When Harry met Sally“, “Sleepless in Seattle“, “You’ve Got Mail“, “Julia and Julia“…

 
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Posted by on December 11, 2011 in Articles, Thoughts

 

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How to Examine and Challenge Your Own Beliefs?

A way to start is to ask yourself: “How am I doing?” and followed by“3 layers of Ask Why vs. Reasoning”. Write your reasoning down and identify the beliefs embedded and examine them (their positive and negative influences in your life). Then choose again to embrace the same beliefs further or to modify for better cause or simply to let go. The below example will explain better!

Example: (click on the picture for better visual)

During the examining process, I would encourage you to challenge each of your belief the following:

• Does the positive influence of a belief define my core values in life and my character?

• Is the positive influence of a belief the main driver or the motivator of my life?

• How much does the negative influence cost me? Could I still afford it? Do I still want to pay for it?

• If I choose to let go the belief, how would it change me? What do I get to lose?
<Generally it doesn't cost you much… but brings more :P)

With the above process, it will be easier to identify your main or current beliefs, to examine the positive and negative influences and make new choices!

There are few more questions here for your references:

• How am I feeling emotionally these days?
• How is my view or progress in personal development?
• How am I cooping with studies, house chores or work?
• How am I doing in my career?
• How is my physical outlook and health state right now?
• How am I doing financially?
• How is the relationship with my parents or children?
• How am I doing in my marriage?

Ready to Join us for our weekly challenges? Challenge Your Beliefs!

Some Common Limiting Beliefs:
(partial source: ReCreate Your Life)

• I’m not good enough.
• I’m not important.
• Change is difficult.
• Nothing I do is good enough.
• Too much money is sinful.
• It’s not possible. I cannot do it.
• Mistakes and failure are for losers.
• I’m powerless. I cannot change or decide…
• I’m not confident. I am not competent.
• If I voice out my opinion, I will be judged or rejected.
• People aren’t interested in what I have to say.
• I’ll never get what I want, no matter how hard I try.
• I’m not worthy to be loved or being treated with respects.
• I’m not good looking enough to be attractive.
• Marriage is the end of all excitements and the start of an ordinary life.
• Rich people are bad because they get rich by taking advantage of others.
• What makes me good enough or important is doing favors for others.
• What makes me good enough or important is having people think well of me.

More Reading:
Terms of Enragement

 
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Posted by on December 10, 2011 in Articles, Thoughts

 

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Be the Master of Your Own Beliefs!

In fact every day, we response to the events in our lives based on our conscious or unconscious beliefs. When is the last time you have a new belief? Or create a belief for yourself? Were you aware when you adopted or created that belief? Or just let the new adopted belief dictates what and how you suppose to be?

Are you the master of your beliefs or the beliefs dictate who you are?

Chances are high that we all had one or many heart breaking experiences with our ex-lovers. When the relationship ended, amongst all the negative feelings and thoughts we had, we took up new beliefs unconsciously while we were making statements like, “all men/women are the same, they are selfish and only care about themselves…”, “I shouldn’t have believed him/her, whoever cheated before would cheat again…” or “I can never trust man/woman again, it’s just full of lies and excuses…” and many other more. So we enter our next relationship with these new beliefs and hoping the outcome of this new relationship will be somehow different from our beliefs. We in fact having contradicting beliefs to what we really want to believe; at the same time, these contradicting beliefs are limiting us to give 100% of ourselves to this new relationship.

Beliefs in relationship is just one aspect of our lives. There are beliefs related to family, health, work, personal development and money. Not to mention if you have a religious background and associated beliefs.

We need to realize that WE HAVE EVERY POWER TO CHOOSE WHAT WE WANT TO BELIEVE!

Beliefs that have been given to us as a child can be further embraced, modified for better or removed. Human beings are social animals, sometimes compromising in beliefs could happen (just to make others happy). If you CHOOSE to compromise, be happy about your compromising. No complaints or back firing afterward. Be responsible! If you really don’t want to compromise, MAKE A DECISION to adopt a new belief that will give you self-assurance on your beliefs. A belief like the below might be helpful:
“THERE CAN BE DIFFERENT BELIEFS BETWEEN YOU AND ANYONE; AND IT IS PERFECTLY OK. NO JUDGEMENT, NOTHING GOOD OR BAD, RIGHT OR WRONG ABOUT IT. IT’S JUST LIKE WEARING DIFFERENT STYLE OF CLOTHES. SAME TASTES YOU SHARED WITH OTHERS; SOME YOU JUST DON’T. THE CLOTHES YOU WEAR HIGHLIGHT THE BEST IN YOU; SO DO YOUR BELIEFS. YOU DON’T HAVE TO AGREE WITH OTHERS’ BELIEFS, PERHAPS YOU MAY TRY ACCEPTING THE DIFFERENCES. THIS SHOULD APPLY TO OTHERS TOO!”

Once you take on the above belief, ‘compromising’ will not appear as the only way; and you will need the courage to stand firm for what you believe in and make it clear to others.

I believe: “Everything is possible, as long as I give my very best.” There is a hard truth that it is just not the case in some circumstances; however I am always encouraged by this belief to go an extra mile, to find more alternatives, options and not to stop or give up at the first obstacle. And I still choose to stand firm on this belief.

The limiting aspect of a belief
There are always two sides of a coin. Beliefs that I take as positive influence may have their negative aspects too.

Just take the belief I have above as an example, “Everything is possible, as long as I gave my very best.” when I don’t achieve my goals, I start to judge myself on not giving ‘my very best‘; otherwise I would have achieved the goals. I lash myself to give more efforts (normally on the same actions which I have been doing already, instead of smart thinking and find other solutions). I become more and more stubborn in achieving the goals and start blaming myself for still not achieving the goals! It’s all just because I believe I am not giving ‘my very best‘! The belief has limited myself from being open-minded about my results, from seeing a new possibility of alternative solutions, as well as recognizing and appreciating ‘my very best‘ efforts.

And yet, I have not mentioned when I impose the same beliefs over others and start thinking they are not giving their very best… Just try not to copy what I did, imposing own beliefs over others… life will be much easier if we just accept others’ beliefs which we are not necessary agree.

Our Beliefs are Our Perceptions
Our beliefs reflect our perceptions which sometimes might not be true and may be distorted according to our own past experiences and unconscious wishes. We need to fully understand the source of our perceptions and make a clear distinction on if the source is factual or based on emotions and past experiences. To drill down to the source of our perception enables us to release ourselves from false perception we had, hence to alter our beliefs.

The main message of this article is:
to know our own beliefs, the limiting aspects of the beliefs and to make new choices. So that we may grow strong with the beliefs we consciously choose and at the same time not to be limited by these beliefs! How to Examine and Challenge Your Own Beliefs?!

Join us with our weekly challenge, Challenge Your Beliefs and find out more about our own beliefs!

More Readings:
“Belief Works” by Ray Dodd (A book that I am currently reading)
Examining Your Beliefs
Changing Core Beliefs
The First Step in Changing Your Belief System
Remove a Limiting Belief in about 20 Minutes
Make A Choice – Stand Behind It And Believe In Yourself
“ReCreate Your Life” hosted by Morty Lefkoe
(I go through his free online materials and find it quite useful as it gives step-by-step guidance.)

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2011 in Articles

 

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