Blueroselady's Weblog

I wish you abundant happiness, health & wealth

Posts Tagged ‘happiness

Gratitude exercise: Food that makes you happy

leave a comment »

Since food is one of our essential needs, I ask myself why not enjoy them more and let them make me happy.

On the last Thursday of August 2013, l squeeze a South African orange that tasted so sweet. A previous orange from the same batch tasted sour. In an analogy, l hope that sour relationships in our life turn sweet, when we are patient. Being patient is an art.

On the 2nd Monday of September 2013, I had a lunch with Thai friends. A guy who is returning to his home country praised my hard work, he often saw me also working in the weekends. During the lunch, I also tried stir fried fresh bamboo shoot, they taste crunchy, I like it!

In October 2013, I meet up with a mentor Keith Ferrazi, an Italian American. His surname sounds like Ferrari, the fast driving luxurious car to me. Keith’s main message of never eat alone is like a wake-up call for me. Up until 2011, I signed myself up for a challenging project with a deadline of 2011. I was struggling and stressing, I put extra efforts, energy, sweat, time, and even tears into my project. Since my time was limited, I often chose to eat during off-peak hours (I saved time on queuing and finding a seat), but that also means that I could not find someone to eat with (at weird hours). Gradually, I have learned to be comfortable with eating alone and be happy with myself. This is not necessarily a bad thing, because we have to be independent. However, I sacrificed opportunities to develop my inter-dependent skills by eating alone. Now, it is time to form new relationships, to revitalize old relationships, and to sustain harmonious ongoing relationships.

Free food served in association with conferences / talks. Actually, there is no free lunch, someone else is paying for our food, so I can only be grateful. It often makes me think how to increase the production of healthy food to sufficiently and sustainably feed the fast-growing world population.

Simple, relatively bland homemade / home-cooked food after a day of eating strongly-flavored, mass-produced food, to detox and re-balance our body. I am not totally anti-junk food. It is ok to have the indulgence of e.g. desserts, ice cream, curry, etc, but not for every meal!

Some nights, I cook soup overnight using the slow cooker. Having a (sometimes 2!) bowl(s) of hot soup in the morning really makes me more grateful than ever, especially to Mom & Dad who bought the ingredients for us. Thank you for loving us!

In December 2013, I packed snack to work. My snack includes different kinds of fruit (including Thailand longan, Korean Jeju Mandarin, nectarines from Australia), bread, and KitKat Hazelnut! Sometimes, I got free snacks. Life is awesome.

Written by blueroselady

February 17, 2014 at 9:08 am

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

with one comment

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.

Happiness exercise: Describe yourself in positive ways

leave a comment »

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

Simple pleasure of life

leave a comment »

Find the place that saw and see You many times through passing years:Son with laughter, tears,
Dad with no fears,
Grandpa pulled with loud cheers.
Turn time back, climb the wooden track.

Baby loves to see the dancing of leaves of the tree standing outside living room.

Cook dinner.
Savor the meal while listening to classical music.

Re-reading what I have written.
Re-learn and unlearn.
Dreaming. Dreaming BIG

Written by blueroselady

October 2, 2013 at 10:50 am

Posted in lifestyle, writing

Tagged with , , , ,

How to use quotes to better your life? 4 empowering tips

leave a comment »

Do you love quotes?
Do you have a collection of quotes that you love?
Would you please share one or few with me those that you love most (in comment below)?

When I was a high school student, like other boarders, I was assigned to a particular class room for 7-10 pm self-study every Sundays to Fridays, and Saturdays too when it was near the exam period!

I was fortunate that the class room where I was assigned to had inspiring quote written on the black board.
坚其志,苦其心,劳其力,事无大小,必有所成。

Since then, I started to collect my own quotes.

I also learned that by including quotes in my essays, I can improve the quality of my writings, and received higher marks. So, I started to memorize some useful quotes.

Agreeing with my friend Passuello of Litemind, quotes can instantly transform our moods, feelings & emotions, like a keyboard shortcut. Being short & succinct, quotes act faster than books, music & movies.

Toni Robbins highlights the importance of being able to instantly switch our mood, it is a relief to realize that quotes can be one of our arsenals.

We may have already known about the idea that a particular quote expresses, but sometimes we may have forgotten about it. The quote can serve as our reminder.

Sometimes, we may subscribe to popular ideas, but not everything popular is always right. Quotes of different (if not opposing) ideas can challenge our perspectives.

Sometimes, we have an idea on particular issues, but we are struggling to find the right words to express it. Herein, quotes come as a shortcut & springboard for explaining our ideas / established views / formed perspectives to others.

To summarize,
1. quotes are useful to instantly transform our emotions.
2. quotes can make us happy and hopeful.
3. quotes challenge our perspectives.
4. quotes enable us to communicate (write, speak, talk) effectively.

Bonus:
# Quote of the day:
Do our Best
Let God do the Rest
# Quotes at the end of my email

Written by blueroselady

September 9, 2013 at 10:56 am

The power of positive thinking that we could never underestimate

leave a comment »

Positive thinking

# allows us to treasure, enjoy, embrace our lives

# gives us a reason to continue living as illustrated by a story of Viktor Frankl

# makes learning easy for us
# can be inherited (sounds like our genes) to the future generation as suggested by a reader S

@~@

When Viktor Frankl was imprisoned in the Nazi camp,
suffered torture and the loss of his family (parents, brother, wife),
he miraculously realized that
between what happened to him (the stimulus) and his response to him,
he still has the power / the freedom to choose his own response.

Viktor Frankl chose to think positively, to imagine positively.
He imagined that he would lecture to his students after being released from the camp.
He imagined a positive future that gives hope and strength to his present.
He survived,
founded logotherapy and
wrote Man’s Search for Meaning,
which highlight the importance of finding meaning in all forms of existence,
even the most sordid ones, and hence a reason to continue living.

@~@

Learning is a part and parcel of living.

As my saying goes "Live, Learn, Earn"

How can we effortlessly learn difficult subjects and skills using positive thinking?

Think positive.
Do not think that it is difficult.

Simplify.

The best in the world simplify the complex (e.g. complex subjects);
the most common make the simple complex.

@~@

A reader S sent me a warm email about her experience with positive thinking.

She wrote:
Although my pregnancy was relatively physically challenging,
I suffered from acid reflux, nausea, and backache that made sleeping flat uncomfortable,
yet I was very happy.


Pregnancy seems to be a long holiday when I was pampered by my family member, tolerated by my colleagues, and showered with kindness by strangers.


I spent many hours reading self-help positive psychology books.
Probably, I read over a hundred books,
making my own notes that I can review later,
they are like short-cuts to happiness for me,
or an instant side-effect-free ‘aspirin’ when I am stress.

As a result, I delivered a healthy baby who is naturally happy.
He smiles within 24 hours in his sleep,
and he smiles the first thing in the morning when he wakes up after a good night sleep and being fed with breast milk.
He smiles often, even to strangers.
People loves him.

God must have given him to us to also let us learn from him.
His natural ability to be happy with himself, with life, and to bring happiness to others through his smiles.

On the other hand,
looking back at my post-delivery experience,
there are things that I wish can be better.

Sometimes it seems that the more people (including grandparents, in-laws, the so-called experts, and well meaning friends giving advices)
are involved in the process,
the more different wants and rules to be met,
which made my life tougher.
What I did not realize that I do not have to live my life to other people’s expectation!

What works for others, may not work for us (my baby & me).
What works for us, may not works for others.
For example,
his grandmother insisted that we do not buy a breast pump,
but the breast pump turned out to be highly useful!
I just have to keep on experimenting and finding ways that work for us.
It is ok to be different & imperfect.

Finally, the most important lesson that I learned,
while I diligently gulped down all the nutritious confinement meals and red date tea,
I forget to consume my positive thinking nourishment.

Everyday, it seems that there are new problems.
Things that I must buy and do.
Grandparents will tell me to do this, to do that, and the list goes on.

To make it worse,
my mother nagged at me,
she told me to sleep more,
not to breastfeed baby at night,
because that was her experience,
but she did not know that by doing so would result in drop of breastmilk supply,
and I would wake up at night worrying for my baby,
because I was not allowed to sleep with him in the same room or same bed.

Moreover, I need to write as it is therapeutic for me.
In recent years, I have been writing using my laptop
but my mother disallowed me to use IT gadgets (including my laptop, mobile phones) because she is worried that they are bad for my eyes.

I sincerely want to forgive my mother,
she just wants the best for me.
Although she does not realize that children are not necessarily inherit the same likings / ways of feeling goods as parents,
she just wants the best for me.

Perhaps, my mother is also learning from this experience,
after all my baby was her first grandchild.
She appears to be more patient with her grandchild than to me or our siblings when we were young.
Oops! I am comparing again.

Well … I am trying to be more mindful when I compare things.
Some comparisons are fruitless.

After all, all those have become the past.
I choose to cherish the happy and positive things from the past,
and live in the present.

Blueroselady says:
Congratulations S for becoming a new mother!
You are doing well and great!

To summarise S’ points:
Cultivate intrinsic happiness daily.
Live in the present.
Live not for others’ expectation.
It is OK to be unique / different.
It is OK to be imperfect.

@~@

Bonus: voice note dated 2013 Aug 20th

Written by blueroselady

August 20, 2013 at 10:25 am

Dear baby, welcome to the highly competitive world! Being creative is better than being competitive

leave a comment »

Dear baby

Do you know that there are courses out there that keep on telling Mommy “teach your baby or toddler [insert any of these: to Read / Math / Music]”? To accelerate the rat race, the advertisement goes “You can start when your baby is 3 months old.”

Yes, Mommy started to teach you things that Mommy thinks as necessary, such as praying, sign language, idioms, texture exercise, mirror exercise to increase self-worth / self-love and awareness of body parts, vowel exercise. You responded by happily producing sounds that Mommy still does not understand: baby language.

When Mommy told a friend, he said that Mommy is highly . competitive. However, Mommy thinks that it is good & essential to introduce you the joy of learning early in life. Since you received a lot of (second-hand) toys and was given a few new toys, Mommy will not buy you any toys. We are a frugal family and Mommy wants to save for more important things for your, e.g. healthy fruits & vegetable. However, Mommy shares with you the joy of our world through play in the nature (including parks / beaches / hills / mountains / lakes) enforced with powerpoint slides to help you remember the words, beautiful books, shopping groceries in the supermarkets / markets (Yes, the markets are your playground).

Sometimes, Mommy wonders if Mommy if a competitive person. Recently, Mommy learned from Uncle W that being creative is better than being competitive; and Mommy thinks that Mommy is a creative, instead of a competitive person. Do you know what are the differences between being competitive and being creative? Mommy will write another post in the near future.

Since you are my dearest, Mommy aspires to gives you only the Best that Mommy can afford to nurture creativity, independence, and happy learning in you since your early days.

In fact, Mommy acknowledges that Mommy learned and shared a lot to you through voice notes about many lifelong skills while being pregnant with you. That perhaps explains why you are a happy baby, as observed by Aunt Flower who helped to care for you when Mommy was too weak to carry you around.

Mommy wants you to grow in a happy, healthy, harmonious baby, toddler, child, and then adult. They said it takes 10 years to grow a tree, 100 years to nurture a human being (十年树木,百年树人).

Mommy happily takes on this challenge. Mommy feels that while nurturing you, Mommy also benefits because Mommy has a chance to learn new things that Mommy did not learn as a kid, and re-learn beautiful things that Mommy has experience.

May your life be abundant with joy, happiness and generosity.

Love,
Mommy

Dear Readers, if you find my writings are inspiring to you, please donate to me by clicking here.

Written by blueroselady

March 31, 2013 at 7:18 am