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Happiness exercise: daily O.G.A.M for our well-beings

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Everyday, when you wake up try to practice O.G.A.M for your well-beings, as a part of happiness exercises.

Optimism increases our hope.
Gratitude increases our joy.
Affirmations increase our confidence.

Mindfulness increases our peace.

More:
Optimism / positivity increases our hope. Optimism : (1) the belief that good things will happen to us and that negative events are temporary / transient setbacks / challenges to be overcome (2) an inclination to put the most favorable construction upon actions and events or to anticipate the best possible outcome. Aim for realistic optimism.
Gratitude increases our joy ; gratitude is about appreciating who we are, what we have and where we are — right now, right here. Notice and be thankful for the present.
Affirmations increase our confidence / self-belief.

Mindfulness / mediation / praying / dreaming / mind time / mental processing increases our peace.

Written by blueroselady

October 23, 2013 at 5:36 am

Happiness exercise: write a short introduction about yourself

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In a series of happiness exercises, I brainstorm novel and creative ideas of doings that can boost up our happiness. Today exercise is simple: write a short introduction about yourself. You can memorize it to remind yourself when you experience negative emotions, to make new friends and build new relationships, or simply to make an elevator pitch.

Here is a brief introduction about myself.

I am an ordinary woman with a BIG dream to give extraordinary service to others.

My love include life, family, stories and writing. I dream of writing a book that is enlisted in The New York Times Non-Fiction Best Sellers.

Everyday, I give my best to live and learn so that I can share useful tips about education and entrepreneurship / business,
that are thoughtful, helpful, inspiring, necessary, and kind.

I am also interested in people, travel, food (especially Asian food and Italian desserts), visual arts, movies and creative ideas.

Counting my blessings, I am grateful for being a mother, lifelong student, storyteller, researcher and marketer; and having good health and more wealth than the yesterday-me.

Thank you very much for being interested in me!

Please keep in touch and feel free to comment.

Written by blueroselady

October 11, 2013 at 6:23 am

Posted in writing

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Happiness exercise: Describe yourself in positive ways

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Happiness means differently to different people.
To some people,
happiness means a combination of the followings:# Finding love & happily married
# Having children, grandchildren, great grandchildren
# Good health
# Be financially well-off
# Enjoying a successful career
# Ability to maintain work-life harmony
# Happy relationships with extended family (ie. parents, grandparents, siblings, nephews, etc)
# Fulfilling friendships
# Making a difference to the world. You laugh … yes, many people, including me, set their dreams so high (and hence raising the standards of attaining their happiness).

To sum up, happiness is fundamentally related to health, wealth, and children.

Since happiness is related to so wide and diverse areas of our lives, how can we work on each area of importance to us? How to prioritize?
I believe in exercises / practice. It takes 10,000 hours of practice to give birth to a real talent.
Sincerely, I want you to master the art and science of happiness,
so that you can choose to be happy
even in the face of difficult circumstances and being overwhelmed by negative emotions.

In my designed series of happiness exercises, I would share numerous effective and tested exercise to enjoy happiness in your life.

Today exercise is to describe yourself in positive ways. Write to yourself. List your favorite attributes, your achievements, your roles, your love, and anything elseo about you.

Herein, I do the exercise on myself (in the autumn of 2013)

I am …
# a mother
# a daughter
# a wife
# a student of Coursera, edX
# a researcher
# a storyteller
# an author
# an ex-artist

I love …
# people who love me & whom I love.
You can never replace anyone because everyone is made up of such beautiful specific details.” Before Sunset (2004)
# food (especially healthy affordable food and desserts)
# simplicity
# diversity
# reading (and writing) and hence books
# gardens & parks in spring & summer, in early mornings & late afternoons
# philosophy of life
# giving smiles, talks in front of groups
# learning diverse things. I believe in the “See one, Do one, Teach one” model.
# dreams
# personal development, making a syllabus for life / bucket list / life planning
# entrepreneurship + unconventional work
# (and honestly sometimes fear) change / dynamics.
The only constant is change, continuing change, inevitable change, that is the dominant factor in society today. No sensible decision can be made any longer without taking into account not only the world as it is, but the world as it will be.” Isaac Asimov

I used to love …
# travel
# photography
# fireworks
# movies
But now they are not on top of my priorities.

People who have inspired me (non-exhaustively) include:
# Anthony Robbins
# Cayden Chang
# Chris Guillebeau
# Danah Zohar
# Dale Carnegie
# Dong Mingzhu 董明珠
# Goldie Hawn
# Jean Maalouf
# Jessie Louise Yancey-Siegel, affectionately known as Weezie
# Josh Kaufmann
# Joseph Murphy
# Leo Babauta
# Leong Kaiwen
# Louise Hay
# Luciano Passuello
# Michael Ellsberg
# Napoleon Hill
# Robert Cialdini
# Tahir
# Thich Nhat Hanh
# Tim Ferriss
These people are my brothers / sisters, my mentors, my dearest friends.

Things that I want to have / have more / give more to others:
@~@ Happiness
@~@ Health
@~@ Optimism & Hope
@~@ Gratitude
@~@ Kindness e.g. smile
@~@ Empathy e.g. a listening ear
@~@ Wealth
@~@ Wisdom
@~@ Courage e.g. to make new friends

Things that I want to remove / reduce :
@~@ Fear
@~@ Sadness
@~@ Anger
@~@ Envy / Jealousy
@~@ Clutters
@~@ Disappointment

Written by blueroselady

October 2, 2013 at 11:20 am

Giving gives you happiness

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People whom I think deserve listening to and learning from, advocate giving. When we give, we will feel happy.

I have given many things in my life:
Smile.
$$$.
Time.
Gifts.
Things for donation.
Talent.
Energy / sweat.
Blood.
Encouragement.
I hope to give wisdom in the near future.

Most time I am happy to give, but there are times I am forced to give by circumstances.
For example, once a woman asked my man to help her take photo, then she asked me to lend her my (beautiful) hat. I was unwilling because it was drizzling and I did not feel well, yet I still gave in to her request.
This is a very small example, in work / school we are often / sometimes / rarely forced to give as well.

Why are we sometimes unhappy to give?
1. The receiver has more than us. They already have more / better things yet they insist / trick us to give to them.
E.g. An acquaintance WT who spent $ to study in US, then she got a scholarship to study in UK, mentioned that a beggar earns 50% more than her per month (the beggar’s income is in news in summer 2012).

2. There are imbalance of forces / power. People of authority (parents, teachers, bosses) make you to do things in which you have to give more than what you are willing to give.

3. There are inequality of contribution from collaborators / co-workers / team members in giving and receiving. A solution is to enter the joint efforts with the attitude of "giving without expecting to receive", but this does not serve the purpose of group synergy. When you collaborate, you want 1 + 1 = 3 or more. Perhaps not all collaboration makes everyone happy, if this is the case and you find yourself giving more than what you should, you can try to move on to another project then.

4. Naturally, it makes sense not to give to your competitors (e.g. in business), unless you want to turn them into your collaborators. I think the latter strategy is excellent. When you cannot beat your competitors, you join them, which I did well in summer 2009.

5. Emotion / personal likes and dislikes / chemistry. We just like some people more than others, e.g. our good / kind friends. A girlfriend of mine is rich from working in bank and claiming insurance, yet I still love to give her gifts because I love her. We have been friends for ages and I found her like my elder sister (whom I never have), wise and kind. On contrary, we may find it hard to like (hopefully very few) people. E.g. Can you like your housemate if he always leaves post-excretion signs on your toilet bowl? Can you like your neighbor who blast loud music when you want to sleep? No matter what, even if our likes and dislikes for different people vary, we will still try our best to see everyone equally. After all, we are all children of God.

Written by blueroselady

January 5, 2013 at 8:24 am

Stumbling on happiness

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What is most important to your happiness?
health (sound body, soul, mind)
people around you (family, loved one, friends, etc)
career, wealth, prosperity
your appearance
a passion (music, sport, hobby, etc)

@~@
Interesting stuff from the book Stumbling on Happiness by Daniel Gilbert:

@~@
Blessings make me happy. Here are blessings of my ordinary days.
Many are to do with food, thank you God for the food you gave me.

February 17, 2011
Saw a rabbit in the full moon.

February 16, 2011
Eat vitamin ester-C bought in US almost every weekday recently, stay healthy!
Eat Western grilled fish + fried rice with bacon + coleslaw.

February 15, 2011
Eat almond cookies of Koi Kei bakery, brought by a friend from Macau.
Eat Crown Choco Heim of Korea.

Written by blueroselady

June 16, 2011 at 2:51 pm

Posted in book, food, God, pyschology

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Are you / your loved one an ESFJ? ~26 simple descriptions to understand them

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To know your personality type,
you can do an instant self-guided assessment here.

A friend A, who has showered me with sisterhood’s love (that I have never ever imagined), is an ESFJ, I may be wrong, but I am highly interested to understand her, so that I can be a good, supportive friend of her. I am really grateful to her and wish that she will discover her happiness in romance and work.

@~@ ~ 12% people are ESFJ
@~@ quite popular / good with people, good at manipulating them (to achieve their own ends) while they believe that they are following a solid moral code of conduct.
@~@ good at reading others, and often change their own manner to be more pleasing to whoever they are with at the moment.
@~@ need to feel appreciated and know they’ve helped someone. altruistic
@~@ dislike conflict and criticism
@~@ well-organized
@~@ strongly need to be liked
@~@ need to be in control
@~@ do not mind monotony, routine work
@~@ place a lot of importance on what is socially acceptable, and can be very cautious / critical of anything unconventional / outside the mainstream.
@~@ SF people base their moral compass on established traditions / laws, upholding authority and rules, rather than drawing their morality from philosophy /mysticism like NF people do.
@~@ have a strong moral code that is defined by the community that they live in, rather than by any strongly felt internal values.
@~@ enjoy hearing about their friends’ relationships and activities, remembering little details, ready to talk things out with warmth and sensitivity. can be kaypoh, indeed practical matters and gossip are their bread and butter.
@~@ ESFJ thrive on staying up to date with what their friends are doing
@~@ Use their SJ (sensing and Judging) characteristics to gather specific, detailed info about others, and turn this info into supportive judgments.
@~@ prefer plans / organized events to open-ended activities, than spontaneous activities.
@~@ good career: personal accountant (not corporate accountant), teacher, social work / medical care.
@~@ expect AUTHORITY to be respected and backed up by rules and standards
@~@ can be efficient, hard-working subordinate; but struggle with too much freedom and improvisation
@~@ often seek friends at work
@~@ almost always willing to lend a hand when / where it’s needed
@~@ excellent networkers (think of Bill Clinton), seem to "know the person" to bring a project together on time.
@~@ when ESFJ’s suggestions / help are turned down, they can take it personally.
@~@ vulnerable to stress
@~@ never challenge the authority of ESFJ as she can stress out, loses her temper, and just generally reacts badly.
@~@ ESFJ’s natural partner is ISFP or INFP. ESFJ prefers stable, harmonious relationships and like a partner who is able to be loving and committed, even when the ESFJ has strong emotional reactions. PS: I’ll be on hunt for such a desirable man for my friend.

What can we do to support a loved one who is an ESFJ?
@~@ must thank / appreciate her from time to time (whenever there is such an opportunity to do so)
@~@ never tell her you that are critical of her beliefs / habits / traditions (if any). Iit can hurt her greatly / cause her to be very defensive). ESFJ dislikes criticism.
@~@ if you must turn down her suggestions / help, do it very very diplomatically.
@~@ do not challenge her authority.
@~@ as a friend, I must respect / be supportive of her dreams or opinions
@~@ talk more about practical matters (e.g. cooking, how to solve work problems efficiently), she likes it.
@~@ do not talk too much about your private selves that you are not comfortable that others would know, but reveal some that you do not mind others to know… she enjoys knowing specific details about you. We are learning to love / understand kaypoh people.

20150524

Written by blueroselady

May 24, 2015 at 6:37 am

Things to do at age 32-47 (1.5 precious decade)

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  1. Be grateful. Gratitude can soothe your desire and competitiveness. More importantly, gratitude is the root of happiness.
  2. Love yourself. Stand up for yourself for things that matter. Get out of a bad relationship.
  3. Believe that you are beautiful.
  4. Believe in miracles. “永远相信,美好的事情即将发生”
  5. Travel and continuously learn and learn how to learn (meta learning). “Investing in yourself is the best investment you will ever make. It will not only improve your life, it will improve the lives of all those around you.” ~ God via Robin S. Sharma | Learn new languages by immersion.
  6. Love your work. If you cannot do what you love, at least love what you do. According to Frankl, “We can discover this meaning in life in three different ways: (1) by creating a work or doing a deed; (2) by experiencing something or encountering someone; and (3) by the attitude we take toward unavoidable suffering”
  7. Take (at least a big) risk(s) to realize your dreams, step by step strategically. Be courageous to explicitly/implicitly express “I love you”. When you’re old, you won’t care if your love wasn’t returned — only that you made it known how you felt.
  8. Be thick face enough not to care too much about what other people think.
  9. Plant kindness. Do your best to ensure that those who are less fortunate than you, believe that there are sunshine and beauty in this world.
  10. Build connection capital. Connection here refers to genuine and authentic relationships, true friendships.
  11. Cherish people, use things (not the other way round).
  12. Appreciate now and here, the moment, the nature and beauty in the forms of visuals, arts, music, delicious cuisine.
  13. Master the art of endurance.
  14. View a painful experience as an avenue to increase your wisdom.
  15. Move / exercise / dance / walk / hike

Ideas are inspired from:

Written by blueroselady

May 2, 2015 at 3:24 pm

Tips from various magazines

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@~@
To reduce commute time:
www.workshifting.com

Personally, commute time can be used for doing other useful stuff.
Relax (when the public transports are not too crowded).
Listen to voice notes of inspirations and ideas.
Read: study materials, news, facebook.
Plan.

@~@
According to Sally Poon (a dietician from Hong Kong Nutrition Association),
food of eating out are high in SALT, FAT & SUGAR,
which increases the risk of obesity, heart disease & hypertension.
Yes, we know all these but many times we choose to satisfy our

Minimize fried food.
Avoid preserved meat, e.g. salami.

For pasta e.g. spaghetti: red sauce (tomato-based) is healthier than white sauce.

@~@
"The more time a person spends on the job, the more conflict there is likely to be between work and family."
Do you agree with this statement?

@~@ Things that I must do:
# live my life to the fullest.
# appreciate what I have.

@~@
Short-listed things that I find interesting to do:
# Learn copywriting. Learn writing to sell a strategic idea.
# read The happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (since January 2012)
# make DIY flash cards. First picture that I found: polar bear of Churchill, Canada. Remember that the cuddly-looking polar bear (thanks to its shaggy fur) can be dangerous. My friend J was given a polar bear soft toy as the first birthday gift from his man, and his man can be cuddly yet dangerous like polar bear!
# attend a Nobel Prize banquet @ Stockholm (since March 2012).
# eat Vosges Haut-Chocolat (chocolate with unlikely flavors like curry, taleggio, and wasabi), partly because Katrina Markoff is an inspiring entrepreneur!
# FIND TIME TO DO NOTHING. BREATHE. An advice by Tim Park, the author of Teach us to Sit Still: A Sceptic’s Search for Health and Healing.
# Remove dust! Dust can cause your TV, computer, laptop to overheat and reduce its life span. When you do house chores of vacuum cleaning, empty the dust bag when it is half-full. With a fuller dust bag, the machine has to work harder and risks overheating.
# To extend the lifespan of your mobile phone, use its appropriate charger, simply because the voltage is different. Do not charge your phone overnight.
# commit to 30-day challenge of writing a book. Thank you Matt Cutts.
# refuse to let work compromise what my body needs: nutritious, regular meals, 7-8 hours of sleep, 3×10-minute exercise.
# hit the road less traveled with a backpack like Paige Chua. She went for her first solo trip to Beijing & Inner Mongolia in 2007. Interesting reflection: city dwellers seek a simple life when travel, but rural dwellers (e.g. of Inner Mongolia) aspire to move to cities (e.g. Beijing).

Quotes that I like:
# "No one shoots you if you’ve got a smile on your face." ~ Alan Wicker, travel journalist.
# "When I visit somewhere new, I always absorb it first as a human being, then photography it as my hobby and then consider if it’s interesting enough to share with other people through Twitter, Facebook or my blog." ~ Ben Southall, Winner of Best Job in the World (2009), caretaker of Hamilton Island on the Great Barrier Reef.
# "Don’t forget that frequent business travellers are often the most frequent leisure travellers." www.businesstraveller.asia
Blueroselady: The next time someone (e.g. CV) tells you and me that he is busy travelling on business trips, he is likely to include sightseeing and leisure activities too!

Written by blueroselady

January 11, 2014 at 3:59 pm

Taming the Tiger Within: advices from Thich Nhat Hanh to diffuse anger, conquer fear and cultivate love.

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Recognize & embrace your anger when it manifests itself.
Care for it with tenderness rather than suppressing it.

Many of us begin a relationship with great love,
very intense love.
So intense that we believe that,
without our partner,
we cannot survive.
Yet if we do not practice mindfulness,
it takes only one or two years for our love to be transformed into hatred.
Then, in our partner’s presence we have the opposite feeling,
we feel terrible.
It becomes impossible to live together anymore,
so divorce is the only way.
Love has been transformed into hatred;
our flower has become garbage.

If you see elements of garbage in you,
such as fear, despair, and hatred, don’t panic.
As a good organic gardener,
a good practitioner,
you can face this:
"I recognize that there is garbage in me.
I am going to transform this garbage into nourishing compost that can make love reappear."

Mindfulness means to be present,
to be aware of what is going on.
This energy is very crucial for the practice.
The energy of mindfulness is like a big brother or big sister,
holding a young one in her arms,
taking good care of the suffering child,
which is our anger, despair, or jealousy.

When you say something unkind,
when you do something in retaliation,
your anger increases.
You make the other person suffer,
and they try hard to say or do something back to make you suffer,
and get relief from their suffering.
That is how conflict escalates.

If it is your partner who is angry, just listen.
Listen and do not react.
Do your best to practice compassionate listening.
Do not listen for the purpose of judging, criticizing, or analyzing.
Listen only to help the other person express himself and
find some relief from his suffering.

If we are able to touch our ground of no birth and no death,
we will have no fear.
That is the base of our true happiness.

Written by blueroselady

January 2, 2014 at 3:32 pm

Recipe for a Happy Life : 44 ingredients and instructions prepared with love

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Towards the end of 2013, I am grateful that I have an serendipitous opportunity to meet & learn from Cheryl Saban. Her eyes, gaze, smiles and life experience reminds me on Louise Hay.

Cheryl introduced me to a coffee table book of her, which is beautifully prepared with pastel-tone, day-wedding-like photos. I am also grateful to Emily Westlake who was responsible for the picture research. Those charming, gentle and simple photographs and images of flowers, glasses, plants, seaside, nostalgic items are indeed heart-warming for cold December. Those soft, natural light falling gently on ordinary items make them look extraordinary.

Reflecting on Cheryl’s sharing, people do face financial woes, marital strife, and health problems. This perspective seems to connect with Michael’s view that it is rare for a person to have excellence in all areas of wealth, relationships, and health.

So, here are the ingredients & instructions for a happy life that I like:

@~@ LOVE & RELATIONSHIPs / CONNECTIONs
# Give love, create love, and receive love.
"There is only one happiness in life, to love and be loved" ~ George Sand.
# Be kind & encouraging. "Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony." ~ Mohandas K. Gandhi
# Practice random act of kindness.
"Always be a little kinder than necessary." ~ James M. Barrie, the creator of Peter Pan.
# Give to others.
"When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed." ~ Maya Angelou.
# Give your time, talent, treasure to others.
# Connect to yourself.
# Connect to nature.
# Connect to God.
# Connect to others : family members, friends, colleagues.
# Find & cherish your soul mate.
"The key to succeeding in a relationship is not finding the right person, it is learning to love the person you found."
# Forgive yourself.
# Forgive others.

@~@ GRATITUDE
# Be content with who you are.
"To be what we are, and to become what we are capable of becoming, is the only end of life." ~ Robert Louis Stevenson.
# Be grateful.
"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom." ~ Marcel Proust
# Count your blessings.
# Respect the power of nature, be thrilled by the miracle of birth.
# Appreciate the special beauty that is present in even the most mundane & everyday things, e.g. the very air that you breathe, sunrise, sunset, moonlight.
"The richness I achieve comes from Nature, the source of my inspiration." ~ Claude Monet.
# Be happy for others.
"This is not a competition — there is plenty of happiness to go around, once you know where to look." ~ Cheryl Saban.

@~@ HEALTH
# Eat reasonably.
# Sleep deeply.
# Walk.

@~@ BELIEVE & HOPE
# Pray incessantly.
# Nurture your spiritual beliefs
# Journalling / Keep a diary.
# Engage in positive internal conversations.
# Write your story (in encouraging ways).
# Meditate.
# Attract positive experiences.
"Remember the Law of Attraction, and make an effort to attract positive, happy experiences into your life."
# Develop inner strength.
"Be willing to live life to your fullest potential, and believe in the fact that you have plenty of it." ~ Cheryl Saban.
# Search inside yourself.
"The foolish man seek happiness in the distance, the wise grows it under his feet." ~ James Oppenheim.
# Learn.
"Master a new skill. When you take the time to engage in activities that absorb your full attention, you’ll experience a sense of well-being and contentment." ~ Cheryl Saban.
Blueorselady : think of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi’s flow.
# Look for ways to be inspired.

@~@ INDEPENDENCE & RESPONSIBILITY
"Independence is happiness." ~ Susan B. Anthony.
# Choose happiness.
"50% of a given human’s happiness level is genetically determined (based on twin studies), 10% is affected by life circumstances and situation, and a remaining 40% of happiness is subject to self control." ~ Sonja Lyubomirsky, The How of Happiness.
# Think positively. "The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts." Marcus Aurelius Antoninus.
# Learn positive coping skills.
"Avoid false fixes. Over-indulging in shopping, food, alcohol, or drugs won’t bring you happiness." ~ Cheryl Saban.
# Try to make at least three people smile each day — beginning with yourself!

@~@ PASSION
# Discover your passions.
"Explore. Dream. Discover" ~ Mark Twain.
# Improve your talents.
# Have purposes, dreams, goals.
"It is one of my dreams to publish a coffee table book, I believe I can. A book that can help myself, my loved ones & others to enjoy a lifetime of contentment and fulfilment. Thank you Cheryl for your encouragement!"
# Be proactive.
"Turn wishful thinking into positive action. Those who take a proactive stance in their lives tend to have an ample supply of joy and pleasure" ~ Cheryl Saban.
# Seek positive role models.
# Learn life-enhancing, esteem-building behaviors from your role models, heroes / heroines, masters, jedi / guru / mentors.
# Be persevered for things that matter. https://blueroselady.wordpress.com/2013/11/01/perseverance-why-does-it-matter-can-perseverance-be-learned/
# Work.
"Happiness comes when your work and words are of benefit to yourself and others." ~ Buddha.