Blog Challenge, Success!

Blog Challenge – Final Day!

Today is the last day of the Blog Challenge.

As it was February, it was only 28 days. However, I feel like it was certainly long enough to make a new habbit.

First of all, I am sincerely glad that I was able to succeed in this challenge.

It would have been such a disappointment to myself if I, who started this whole 12 month challenge thing, was not able to accomplish the first challenge.

So while doing this challenge, I really enjoyed having my own space where I could write about anything I wanted.

I think it even made me think more about this world and life just because I had to write something every day.

It forced me to try and make sense of this world and have my own opinions.
And I believe these things are really healthy habits.

The best part about writing these posts were when people I don’t know at all would press like through WordPress and even a single like would make writing that post fully worth it.

I’ve always wanted to keep a blog and I feel like I can now kind of say that I have a blog.

I have a place where I can write random thoughts down.

I have a place where I can share how my 12 month life detox challenge is going.

I have a blog.

And I love it.

And the best thing about this challenge is that, although the official Blog Challenge is over tonight, I still inted to keep this habit that I made going.

I won’t force myself to write something every single day like this month, but I do want to keep this habit I started alive.

I’ll continue posting my thoughts on life and this world regularly and also share how my 12 month challenge is going throughout the year.

And since I’ve put in my due work to get this blogging habit going, I believe it will be much easier to keep it going.

Because as I always, always, always say: Habits are hard to make and hard to break.

So, thank the world I finished this challenge successfully. I loved it.

Month 1, Blog Challenge, DONE!

Next up, Cold Shower Challenge!!!

The Art of Smiling Just Right

Blog Challenge – Day 27

Smile!

It’s such a wonderful, beautiful thing.

Pull your lips up on both ends and already you’ve got instant sunshine.

I am totally sincere when I say that if I have like just 10 wishes in this world, one of them would be the ability (the skill) to smile naturally at any person in this world.

It seems like something so simple and easy, but is it?

I want to talk about a few points about smiling I’ve learned through the years, and hopefully when I put them all together it’ll have some form of meaning.

1. Smiling exposes your insecurities.

Smiling is the remote controlled version of offering someone your hand.

If you smile at somebody and that person doesn’t smile back at you, boom! You’ve just been rejected.

You are giving people a chance to reject you, and as we all know once we’ve been rejected we try not to give people a chance to reject us anymore because we don’t like the pain it causes.

But here’s a head scratcher.

If you go to the bathroom right now by yourself, sit down all by and just smile, you still feel somewhat uncomfortable. So, if nobody is looking, why on earth should you be even 0.001% uncomfortable?

Could it be because it is causing you to expose your own insecurities?

2. The art of smiling is all about balance.

Smiling at somebody is a complicated matter.

Smile too little and you are an unkind, cold soul.

But, what about the other end?

What happens when you overly smile at somebody.

Creep! Or at least a superficial, fake person.

There is an adequate amount of smiling suitable for each occasion, and to overly surpass that can also be suboptimal.

3. The art of smiling is about practice.

In the book Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert, she is recommended by an Indonesian wiseman to try a “smiling meditation”, where she meditates with a smile.

I think there is power in that.

Just by practicing the very facial expression of smiling, you can induce feelings of positive energy and also train your brain to be more comfortable with that facial expression.

Actually, as a matter of fact, I’ll even go further and also suggest that the opposite is also true. A meditation with a facial expression of squinted eyebrows and somber seriousness can also help to relieve fear and stress as well. (This I didn’t read from anywhere. Just my thoughts and experiences of meditation)

The point is, by exploring these facial expressions routinely, you can condition yourself to be more comfortable with them.


There is a certain hospitality in rural areas where people are more open to tossing a “hello” or a “how do you do”.

A humane relationship between one person and another.

There is less and less of that in this world today.

Big cities and tough people.

But behind that front lies fear.

You assume fear for what you don’t know under hostile circumstances.

 

 

But only by first offering a hand, by first saying “hello”, by first giving a smile can you be a part of bringing back humanity.

Be the change you want to see.

The Road of My Heart

Blog Challenge – Day 26

There seems to be an understanding in my heart that there is a possibility of living with limited financial resources for my life.

In shorter words, of being quite broke.

And I am alright with it.

Would I like to avoid it? Yes, with all my powers I would like to avoid it and live comfortably.

Am I afraid of it? Well, at times yes. I must admit I worry about it. I’m only human.

But will I give up my current lifestyle and career as an entrepreneur for more stability?

No.

At least for the time being, I do not believe I will.

Because in order to really bring change on a big scale in this world, you just need to take risks.

And this risk is just what I must endure in order to have a chance of living out the life I want to live.

They say “do what you love”. But at what costs?

My cost of doing what I love is real. It’s a very real cost that I must be willing to pay.

But that comfort and stability is just what I need to give up in order to do big things.

So when my friends are in stable jobs and planning ahead to get married and get a house, I can’t do that. I don’t have the stability in income to be able to plan ahead.

I don’t even have a savings account.

But in the end, on my deathbed; when all is said and done, I believe I will be glad I took this road. The road less taken. The road of my heart not my head.

It’s ironic. Whether or not I succeed down the path will actually change the meaning and value of this post.

If I fail continuously, this post will be seen as the thoughts of a man too stubborn for his own good. A man that just plays the game a bit too risky for his own good. A cautionary tale of why it’s not a smart idea to try to go your own way. How you should just stick to the conventions of society.

But. If I succeed. If I am blessed enough to see my dreams come true, then this same post will be the post of how movers and shakers and game changers see things differently. It will show what level of sacrifice an entrepreneur should be willing to take in order to fulfill his dreams.

However right now, at this moment, this post is neither of these two.

It’s just a post about how I look at things.

The insecurities and simultaneously, the commitment I have for living life the way I see it best lived.

My life’s story shall be one that is fun, exciting, full of adventures, lived to the fullest, lived not only for myself but for others as well, and in order for it to be like that I shall choose the road of my heart.

follow-your-heart-print

Time to Run!!

Blog Challenge – Day 25

Today is a pivotal day.

The weather outside in Seoul is finally above five degrees Celsius!

That’s about 40 degrees Fahrenheit.

And this is my cutoff limit where I can start running outside again!

I have had a deep love for jogging since around 2010.

I’ve never been a good runner. Actually, I hated running.

I’ve only ever been good at one sport, Tae Kwon Do. And even then, it was just good for my age at a young age.

But in high school, while I was an assistant teacher for the Tae Kwon Do class, I had an injury to my tendons after class while fooling around.

I had to stop Tae Kwon Do for a year and wasn’t able to accompany Kinam on the final Tae Kwon Do presentation day on stage breaking bricks.

It was one of those moments that has always stayed with me as something I wish i had been able to do.

Kinam that day was awesome on stage.

And since then I’ve tried to take back Tae Kwon Do and kick-boxing, but I would get the same tendon injury back within the first month.

So that had been my story with athletics.

Until I found the pleasure of running that is!

It all started with a Nike 10K Run in 2010.

It seemed like a really young, dynamic and healthy event that would be good for me.

And so in preparation for that run I started running in the mornings before going to work.

And I loved it.

I felt free. I had more energy. And surprisingly, it wasn’t hard at all.

It’s really only the first three days that it’s really hard to run.

But after those first three days, it is not hard at all.

So I’ve been running ever since.

However, there is one big enemy for this running activity.

And that is the winter.

When winter sets in, and the weather goes below 40 F (5 C), it’s no longer enjoyable or even advisable to run outside.

So the habit is put to hibernate.

And my energy level goes down. And I gain in weight.

But soon enough the winter cold also passes. The streams start to swell, the trees start to sprout to leaves and the weather goes above 5 degrees Celcius!

And the road is ripe for running!!

And when this happens, I know it is time to take my running shoes back out.

Put on my shorts and t-shirt.

Get my music on.

And it’s time to run!!

Dear Kyun

Dear Kyun,

You damn bastard.

You have decided to leave the wolf pack and become a domesticated canine.

A pet to be more specific.

No but all joking aside, I cannot believe that you are getting married.

It was  12 years ago that I met you in your house through your older brother.

And there I saw somebody who loved hiphop, had recorded a few rap tracks, loved drinking and was down to earth. Hard to come by.

And being the same age we easily became ulhealthy drinking partners.

Every weekend after my date with my then girlfriend, the night always ended with drinks with you.

We would drink until I feel asleep midway trying to grab a piece of bbq pork.

I especially remember the day you didn’t answer your phone because you fell asleep in the shower and I had to freeze my ass outside your house for a good three hours.

Also the day I walked in on your parents having breakfast while I was only dressed in boxers. From out side the house.

There was also the day I was convincing you to lean more forward out the roof to make it more exciting.

But all these adventures would have not been possible if it wasn’t for you.

At that time of my life the world was one big huge confusion and you were one of the few things I could count on as being on my side no matter what.

Throughout the years I have seen you grow and change. We no longer binge at that level twice a week. We no longer wear sagging baggy jeans. We no longer scream out onto this cold world “I don’t give a fuck!”

We are now in our thirties, now working, and looking through a bit more mature lense out into the world.

But however old we get, however much time passes, I still cannot believe you are getting married.

You. Being a husband. Maybe even soon a father.

It’s moments like these that really lets me know that time really does fly. Nothing ever stays the same. And you have bravely decided to be the first one from you, Mike, Kinam and me to decide to take the leap.

I didn’t know it, but now that I think about it, maybe this shows that you are most ready to move on to the next stage of life from all of us. Maybe you’ve matured a bit faster.

But however weird it feels, I also feel grateful to be able to live these moments with you.

It’s pivotal life moments like these that we live for.

The final coming of age act.

And so although I will miss the shit shit shit out of single Kyun, I will also congratulate you whole heartedly on this union of husband and wife.

Please be happy.

Please make your wife happy.

And please remember the memories of the great moments we shared.

And remember:

The Garden of Om

Blog Challenge – Day 23

There is a place I always go to when things get tough.

It is my haven. It is my shelter.

It’s where I go to regain strength when I’m beat to the ground.

It heals my wounds. It seals my ruptures.

In this place my thoughts calm down to a still.

I am free of all chains. I am released of all pains.

All I need to do to get to this place is take a seat in a quiet spot.

Sit up straight like a redwood tree.

And look inside where all my thoughts and emotions lie.

Take deep breaths and observe myself.

This is me without ego.

This is me beyond the animal.

This is my Soul.

This is my true Self.

This is the essence that has always been and will always be.

I surrender to the truth, and am empowered by the truth.

When life gets tough and you’re all alone, go seek refuge within the garden of Om (ॐ).

The Buck Stops Here

Blog Challenge – Day 22

Leadership is a very difficult quality.

It is not something that can just be studied. It must be garnered out in the field.

It cannot be attained overnight but has to be molded through effort and experience.

It is now over four years that I have held a leadership position in companies and it has its ups and downs.

But today I’d like to just let some weight off my chest by expressing one aspect of leadership that is at times the most difficult thing.

“The buck stops here.”

An expression that signifies that there is no one else that the blame can be passed on to.

And this has applied to me ever since four years ago.

Think bout it. Everyone has somebody to blame.

A child blames his/her parents for his miseries.
A student blames the teacher.
A wife can blame the husband.
A citizen can blame the city.
An employee can blame the boss.

But that’s just the hardest thing for me.

There is no one else to blame except for myself.

And if I do try to blame something else, that’s clearly not the right approach. With 100% certainty. That’s not the way to deal with it.

When things go well, it’s due to the entire group’s effort. But when things go wrong, I can only ultimately look at myself.

For example if somebody decides to leave the company.

Was it this? Was it that? But we had this. And we had that.

But apart from all the other reasons, if one last thing should have ultimately made them stay, it should have been your leadership and vision.

Somebody only leaves when they have ultimately lost their faith in you.

So the buck always stops with me.

I am humbled to learn I have to work more on my leadership.

And I must take responsibility for the hard times.