All the Small Things

All the Small ThingsPositive Growth
Positive or healthy growth occurs when good things tend to accumulate or grow over time. Akin to the Malay proverb “Sikit-sikit lama-lama jadi bukit” (Over time, a small mound will eventually become a mountain). This is true in many things whether we are talking about our savings or trust funds growing in size over time with reinvestment of dividends, or even in more abstract terms such as health – whereby taking good care of our own personal health daily will lead to a healthy mind and body overall in the long run.

Negative Growth
On the other side is growth of the wrong or unwanted kind when small problems or errors accumulate and become a big issue. One of the big concerns on my side since I moved more into a managerial position were on how to tackle and resolve minor issues or problems before they become a mountain of a problem. No matter how busy or tight our schedules are, we need to set some time aside to put in the few minutes that are required to solve these issues. It is much simpler to tackle problems at the basic step before they blow-up and become major sore points – which tends to happen if we keep postponing or keeping these things as the back of our minds.

A More Cheery Look
Yet out of the workplace, it is often said (and true indeed!) that many of the best things in life are small and/or hardly cost anything. Studies have already shown that in the states, USD40,000 per annum is enough to more than make ends meet and life a life without having to worry about financial worries – and to concentrate on the many other things in life. And by smaller things in life, we mean that spending quality time with friends, going for a picnic with the whole family, or sitting down with a good book by yourself – these are the things that really give meaning to a fulfilling life in a simple way.

Think Big, Start Small
It is of course an interesting time of late with the month of April just past, being the time of the year (in Malaysia), whereby the highest number of turnover or resignations appear to occur. A number of friends as well are once again on the green pastures seeking (re)employment or starting off new careers in different locations. Yet the underlying thing would be what do you want to achieve, or a simpler question of what do you want to do? What is it that you think would make you happy? What things would you want to change from the current place and time that you are in now? Once you have at least an idea of the big picture, the smaller jigsaw pieces will start to make more sense. Despite all the rules and rigors of modern life, we are indeed yet still have the freedom to make our own choices in our lives. And it is never, ever too late to start anew.

Forward March!
Like the small ant working incessantly towards achieving its goals, we continue stepping forward with each small step that we take. But we actually need a bit of the grasshopper along with the ant with us. Set time aside to do the many small things you enjoy – be it the cup of hot latte or the rush of workout after a mountain-climbing session. Blink182 did get it right..

Question
What is the one thing that you’d like to do this month?

24

Not a meme from Alice

24
07:30AM
Wake up. Fall asleep again. Wake up again. Do the zombie dance. Drag self to work.
Random Weird Fact: I have an alarm clock in my washroom so I can realize how late I am and need to jump-start myself to work

08:15AM
Dock notebook. Get coffee. Read emails. Check the sun is still alive, the world is still spinning & the office air isn’t contaminated. Followed by attending first meeting of the day.
Random Weird Fact: I have changed 4 coffee mugs in 1 year. First was a thermos thing which broke. Second found a home in the dustbin for no good reason. Third was retired as it couldn’t fit the coffee machine. Any guesses on the forth?

12:00PM
Go for lunch. End up driving somehow usually… Talk about nonsensical things of little consequence to release stress. Complain about feeling sleepy after lunch. Oh and eat sometime during the whole list.
Random Weird Fact: There is a 86.24% possibility the drink of choice during lunch will be ‘cham peng’ (also known as ying yong / coffee + tea)

01:00PM
Do some work. Drink more coffee (to stay awake). Attend some meetings. Work on some projects. Leave whenever one feels like it (between 5PM – 9PM)
Random Weird Fact: I have 6 books & more than 10 magazines on my cubicle desk – which I never ever read…

07:00PM
Exercise (Jog/Hike/Etc). Shower. Dinner. Sit in front of a computer again (home desktop this time around). Or watch the idiot box (started doing that after hearing that Japanese folks like to watch TV so I feel I should too!). Read a book (a huge maybe). Waste time online. Sleep & good night!
Random Weird Fact: I spend an average of… Wait. I think it’s easier if it’s the other way around. The ONLY time I am NOT staring at a screen is when I am in front of a wheel or eating. (Damn. That’s unhealthy)

Question
What does a day in your life entail?

Nature

19th Sunday of Blog Your Blessings

NatureStep Out
Move away from the concrete jungle. Make the conscious decision to liberate your soul, heart & lungs! Take a trip away to the nearest natural green reserve & enjoy the natural splendors of nature.

Imagination
The cold mists of morning dawn still hang on the skies & the leaves abundantly around you. You can’t help but to take a deep breath. The freshness of the air surprises you a little, especially after all the polluted air you’ve become used to in the days of your life. The breezy winds sweep by gently – and you shiver a little in response. You take in one deep breath after another, wondering how come you don’t come to enjoy this clear air & greenery more often.

The Trek
And with your small crew of friends, you set out on what you are sure will be an enjoyable mini-adventure. Secondary forests are trudged through with reasonably well-worn paths. Largely natural with only touches of human activity in the area. You can’t help but to marvel slightly at the sandy beach sand covering large parts of the jungle trail. No doubt at some point in history the whole area was a beach on which these trees & forest fauna have grown onto.

Upwards & Onwards
The trek leads you both upwards and downwards. Over rivers, fallen branches and even some areas wet from running cascading mini-waterfalls. Your eyes stray upwards towards the left and right, marveling at the giant trees, falling vines & abundant greenery. Beneath your feet, the giant ants of the forest trudge along in lines further than the eye can see. And you continue on your trek feeling a strange but warm sense of contentment & peace.

Light
And the shady forests finally gives way to a bright source of light. It feels akin to one stumbling across a lost world when your eyes take in the spread of sun, beach and blue seas. You walk along the wooden man-made pier, and cannot help but feel that you are out in the middle of the sea with the vast blueness gently enveloping you. “Welcome back”, whispers mother nature softly through the wind.

Question
What is your favorite nature/outdoor spot to be at?

Fear

Adrenaline
Our heart starts beating faster. The palpable silence makes every creak, every groan sound eerily dangerous. We feel our sense become heightened somewhat. The heart races continuously. Uncontrollably.

Death
Death stands at the door. Peeking in. You know. You feel it. We try to calm ourselves but it falls far short from helping. We fear the pain & the unknown that possibly accompanies death. We fear losing what we have right now. Even though in retrospect, we often don’t appreciate what we have at the moment enough.

Emotions
Yes emotions… it whirls around us. Rational thought becomes a labor. We curse our past, our black cat luck & folly at the unfortunate circumstances that have culminated in today. Yet the fear remains. Never far away. Lurking. Waiting. Temporary moments of sanity & clutches of happiness fleet by. Only to be covered swiftly and massively by the dark clouds of fear.

Paranoia
It starts to sink in. And every dark corner hides a fiend from the abyss. Every random passer-by is scrutinized. Fearful of something or someone. Every parked car is peered at – imaginary demons peering back at us from the creavess beneath the seats. It starts to become all consuming…

It’s Only Life
Yet it’s only life. True that it’s largely irreplaceable. Yet once it’s over, it’s over. Fear will be washed away with the peaceful solitude of white linen. Yet perhaps… love… will conquer this fear? The clock ticks on…

Question
What do you fear & have you faced it yet?