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The Downside of Being Up

Monday, February 17th, 2014

The Psychological Price of Entrepreneurship


One thing I gotta be better at is to be more open about the feelings. Recognising them is the first step.

Be well and happy

Sunday, December 8th, 2013

Mental condition takes a toll on the quality of life. I know, because I suffered from depression when I was younger.  That was the turning point in my life.  Since then I tried very hard to recover to a healthy state of mind. Depression is like a black hole sucking me into a place where I dread to be, work very hard to get away from, and occasionally fall back into.

Due to my personal experience, I have deep compassion for fellow sufferers of the mind.  We have a beautiful mind.  For some of us, it torments us and the suffering is real.

Such is the human condition: birth, ageing, sickness and death.

I see this not only in myself, but also in the people around me – ageing of parents, physical suffering in illness and mental suffering.

I sincerely say this prayer for the sake of all who are suffering in one form or another:-

May you be well and happy.  May all beings be well and happy.  

Horror Movies Of The Mind

Friday, February 8th, 2008

The mind plays tricks
Often it makes things out to be bigger than they really are
We think and think and think
“OMG it’s a disaster”
“OMG what are we going to do” 

Then when it comes
And we get through it
It’s a breeze
It’s not as bad as we thought it to be
We handled it pretty well
It’s quite alright, actually

So it goes for all the things
That we keep holding back on
That we prepare continuously for
That we make a mountain out of
That we visualize and fantasize about
That we plan meticulously about 

But never get to doing
Because the mountain seems too big and scary
Even though it is created out of the mole hill in our mind
A fiction
Which has become a horror movie
Playing forever in our minds

When merely switching off the projection machine
And chucking away the DVD
Will do the job of killing the horror movie
Liberating us
To live in reality
That which truly matters

Like love
Like relatives
Like relationship
Like dreams
Like public speaking
Like performing in front of people
Like women
Like men
Like kids

Remember that
It’s just a fiction of our mind
A projection of our own fears
It’s just a movie
It isn’t real 

The reality can be quite different from the projection
Often, it’s much easier and achievable
Than we make it out to be

What Do You Do When Things Screw Up…

Thursday, September 13th, 2007


After You Have Done Everything You Possibly Could ?

Yes, nothing.

I’m not trying to kid you.  Don’t think that I’m belittling the catastrophic moment when all hell break loose, or dismiss this as insignificant.  There’s a hella significance in this one word –> 

Don’t get angry.  Don’t curse or blame.  Don’t get depressed.  Don’t fret.  Don’t be resigned.  Don’t give up.  That’s right, do nothing.  

Even though you may have done everything you possibly could, things may just screw up.  Even if you are the best expert in your field, there will come a rainy day and that’s not of your making.  This is part and parcel of the phenomenon called life

Just move on.

The Law of Sowing and Reaping

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

I like this article written by Jim Rohn and would like to share it with you.  It is written around the theme of network marketing but the concept can be applied to most endeavours we undertake. 

The Law of Sowing and Reaping

I like this part best –

“Don’t go for this why, why, why stuff. I’m giving you the answers here. The answer is in the structure and in the consequences and is in the deal. The answer is in the deal. Anything beyond that is not worth studying.

You say, “Well, how come some just last a little while?” I wouldn’t sign up for that class. Here’s the answer: Some don’t stay. You just have to jot that down. And when some leave you say, “That’s one of those that don’t stay.”

… Its like rearranging the seasons. You can’t fool with that. All you can do is cooperate with the way things are set up. I didn’t set it up.You say, “Well, it shouldn’t be this way.” Well, when you get your own planet you can rearrange this whole deal, but on this planet you’re a guest. You’ve got to take it as it comes.”

Often we come across people or experience something which are illogical and impossible to comprehend.   For instance, you love someone very much, but he/she doesn’t reciprocate.  You put your whole heart into your work, but things still screw up.  As a result, you get disheartened and start popping in your head the questions ‘WHY ? WHY ? WHY ?’.

For those ridiculous things which can’t be changed, my suggestion is, don’t waste your time and energy asking ‘why ? why? why ?’.  There will be people who appreciate you, there will be people who don’t, be it family or colleagues or friends.  Even if you are the best in your field of endeavour, there will come a rainy day when something screws up.

Deal your best on the cards which you have got, and make the best out of what you have.   Channel your energy towards worthwhile causes, and don’t allow yourself to be drained by negativities which you can’t change.

Did Mother Teresa doubt her faith and God ?

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007


Letters reveal Mother Teresa’s doubt about her faith and God

By Daniel Trotta, Reuters  |  August 25, 2007

NEW YORK – A book of letters written by Mother Teresa of Calcutta reveals for the first time that she was deeply tormented about her faith and suffered periods of doubt about God.

“Jesus has a very special love for you. As for me, the silence and the emptiness is so great that I look and do not see, listen and do not hear,” she wrote the Rev. Michael van der Peet in September 1979.

Due out on September 4, “Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light” is a collection of letters written to colleagues and superiors over 66 years. In the United States it will be published by Doubleday, an imprint of Random House, which is owned by German media group Bertelsmann.

The ethnic Albanian Roman Catholic nun, who dedicated her life to poor, sick and dying in India, died in 1997 aged 87.

Mother Teresa had wanted all her letters destroyed, but the Vatican ordered they be preserved as potential relics of a saint, a spokeswoman for Doubleday said.

Mother Teresa has been beatified but not yet canonized.

Time magazine, which has first serial rights, published excerpts on its Web site.

“I spoke as if my very heart was in love with God — tender, personal love,” she wrote to one adviser. “If you were (there), you would have said, ‘What hypocrisy.'”

The book was compiled and edited by the Rev. Brian Kolodiejchuk, a proponent of her sainthood and senior member of the Missionaries of Charity order that she founded.

The letters likely would do little to affect her cause for sainthood as church history is dotted with saints who have been tormented about their faith.

Saint Thomas the Apostle — the “Doubting Thomas” — doubted that Jesus had risen from the dead until, according to scripture, he touches the wound of a resurrected Jesus. Christ himself wondered “God, why have you forsaken me” while on the cross, the Bible says.

But the Mother Teresa letters nonetheless stand in marked contrast to her public image as a selfless and tireless minister for the poor who was driven by faith.

“I’ve never read a saint’s life where the saint has such an intense spiritual darkness. No one knew she was that tormented,” the Rev. James Martin, an editor at Jesuit magazine America and the author of “My Life with the Saints,” told Time.


The writings address numerous topics, but the ones most likely to create a stir are what Doubleday called the “dark letters.”

“Please pray specially for me that I may not spoil His work and that Our Lord may show Himself — for there is such terrible darkness within me, as if everything was dead,” she wrote in 1953. “It has been like this more or less from the time I started ‘the work.'”

Then in 1956: “Such deep longing for God — and … repulsed — empty — no faith — no love — no zeal. (Saving) souls holds no attraction — Heaven means nothing — pray for me please that I keep smiling at Him in spite of everything.”

And then in 1959: “If there be no God — there can be no soul — if there is no Soul then Jesus — You also are not true.”

At times she also found it hard to pray.

“I utter words of community prayers — and try my utmost to get out of every word the sweetness it has to give — but my prayer of union is not there any longer — I no longer pray.”

Struggles of a Pious Leader

After reading the news reports, what do you think ? 

Most of us will never be able to appreciate what Mother Teresa went through during “the work” because we have not been in situations as trying as hers for an extended period of time.  To live amidst deeply suffering people and offer perhaps the only hope in their world, is to live a life of tremendous burden and stress. 

People who do not come close to living in similar conditions will find it hard to empathasize with what Mother Teresa went through.  We think we know through words and print which we hear and read, but unless and until we are in the same shoes, we’ll never truly know.

When you read a book or listen to a news report, do you find yourself thinking then that you know what is written or said ?  Then at some point in the future, when you experience a similar situation, your memory calls forth whatever that you have read or heard, and you realise that only now do you truly understand what it was all about.

I’m an ardent student of personal development and business.  In a strange twist of events, I find myself attracted to the path of entrepreneurship.  I guess it’s a natural progression and choice because I am an adventurous person, and passionate about growing and developing myself spiritually, emotionally, mentally and fully as a human being.  Entrepreneurship is the ultimate challenge.  You are bound to no master but yourself.  Slave to no one but your own demons.   

Some times you think that you know, but do you really know ?   Until I embarked on the journey, I could never come this close to appreciating what it’s like.  The journey is exciting and challenging, yet at the same time it’s lonely, uncertain and grey.  The path ahead is lighted only by the fire in my heart.  The heart and mind wavers between belief and faith in one moment, and self-doubt and anxiety in another.  Sometimes the fire burns bright with passion and strength, other times it dims and weakens and is at the brink of extinguishing.

Does it mean that I need to have absolute faith and no tinge of weakness whatsoever to be worthy of this journey ?  Definitely not.  It’s only human to experience these emotions.  And these emotions are brought out by the experience that I’m going through.  In earlier “secure” times, I had always perceived myself to be strong.  I never knew I can be so weak – till I choose to put myself through the test. 

“I spoke as if my very heart was in love with God — tender, personal love,” she wrote to one adviser. “If you were (there), you would have said, ‘What hypocrisy.'”

Mother Teresa was not a hyprocrite.  She was honest and humble to admit the doubt in her heart. 

Saint Thomas the Apostle — the “Doubting Thomas” — doubted that Jesus had risen from the dead until, according to scripture, he touches the wound of a resurrected Jesus. Christ himself wondered “God, why have you forsaken me” while on the cross, the Bible says.

But the Mother Teresa letters nonetheless stand in marked contrast to her public image as a selfless and tireless minister for the poor who was driven by faith.

Existence of doubt in one who is spiritually advanced and saintly like Mother Teresa can only suggest how tormented she was in what she was doing.   Most people are of spiritual levels very distant from that of Mother Teresa, and so will not be able to appreciate how she saw, felt and thought.   

Without doubt, what is faith worth ? 


The Curse of Perfectionism

Wednesday, August 29th, 2007


Perfectionism is a double-edged sword.  On one hand, it can push you to strive for higher standards of achievement.  On the other hand, you can get stuck if you insist to make everything perfect before you produce a piece of work.  Worse, if you think that you have to be perfect before you try anything, you will never get around to doing it. 

I remember, in biology class some years ago, the teacher instructed us to sketch a certain specimen.  Many of my classmates were already starting to draw, but I was still staring at the specimen thinking how I should draw my first stroke.  After a while, my friend sitting next to me decided to help me out and started drawing on my piece of paper.  She told me to stop musing and just get started.  It didn’t have to be perfect, just get it going.  Just do it. 

I realise that I suffer from the curse of perfectionism.  Maybe that’s why I’m a “late developer” in some aspects of my life.  Sometimes I try to remind myself about this, but most of the time the perfectionism in me raises its ugly head and hides behind the guises of “high standards” and “I’m not doing it until I’m sure I can do it very very well”.   

It’s not wrong to expect high standards for myself and the work I produce.  However if it starts to affect the momentum and get you stuck, then it’s truly a curse.  Sometimes it may even result in “brainfreeze” where you get stuck on a certain point and you just can’t break through.  Much like a dog tied to a pole trying to free itself by running in circles.

Perfectionism can also affect your self-esteem because you are always comparing yourself to the high standard which you set for yourself.   When you are learning a new skill, it’s not possible to be perfect during the initial stage of learning.  So if you keep comparing your performance with the perfect score you imagine for yourself, you are going to get demotivated very quickly.  And that’s not going to help you in learning the skill. 

You don’t have to get it right.  You just have to get it going.

Do yourself a favor.  Don’t judge yourself the first 20 times you try to execute a new skill.

And as we progress along the learning curve, it’ll be worthwhile to remember the 80/20 rule and the law of diminishing returns as you try to perfect your work.


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