Tag Archives: Ikigai

Read More Books!

I love to read books since I was young, over the years growing up from primary, secondary, pre-tertiary, universtiy days, I read a variety of books. Somehow, once I entered into working life, I read less books although I picked it up again when I was in the financial advisory industry. Technology, internet and social media have reduced our time reading books, our attention time span has dropped tremendously.

That is something that keeps me reading, although on a lesser basis compared to my school days, it’s my writing/blogging on my photography/travel website/blog and my personal/technology website/blog. Accumulating my mileage of articles posted on both of my websites/blogs, I grew to unearth and self discover my journey in writing.

Packed with various genres of books from personal development, photography, travel, science fiction, Star Wars, National Geographic, non fiction history. Each and every book had some influence on my writing. Some of my biggest writing/books influences would probably be National Geographic Magazine, the little book of ikigai, Fernando Gro’s bookNo Missing Tools”.

In the year 2016, probably one of the most difficult years that I have ever faced in my life, I went back to reading different genres of books to get myself back on track, climbing my way up and out from the rock bottom. From 2016 till 2018, I added a few different books along the way, I am still finding interesting books to buy and keep! There was an article written by Michael Simmons, titled “The Way You Read Books Says A Lot About Your Intelligence, Here’s Why”. Based on the number of books that I have currently, I can and I am able to relate to the above article!

It’s time to read more different books, for self improvement, better knowledge and writing skills, than to get suck into the social media circus, too much complaining, too emotional draining, it’s getting more unhealthy and I need to reduce my time on it. I want to use social media in a more meaningful and useful way without abandoning them, due to the needs of modern social media marketing, digitial marketing, content marketing, publicity and awareness, using social media is an important channel in the current world we are living in.

At the most recent reading event, Read! Fest 2018 organised by the National Library Board, with this year’s theme “The Pursuit of Happiness”, I keynote lecture : How to be a modern travel writer in the age of Twitter and Instagram by Robert Twigger. His sharing was inspiring and encouraging, I wrote down his sharing and pointers on travel writing inside my travelers notebook.

One of my long term personal goals is to publish my own books and one of the books that I would like to publish are on my travel stories, adventures and explorations, through my collection of photographs that I took over my various travel adventures. I am still seeking, finding and working on this personal writer’s journey of mine.

Searching for more books on travel writing and hope to publish my travel book one day, on Hokkaido seeking ????, Komorebi and climbing up the mountains range with a “I am on the top of world feeling”.

Time to read more books! Time to push myself and create my own lasting legacy with my photographs, writing and books!

Travel memories from Vietnam, thoughts and continue moving forward

A short holiday nearby from 7th to 11th March 2018, visiting Hoi An and Da Nang in Vietnam, with friends Jude and Keith. My travel photography adventure became more of a food and coffee adventure, than a travel reportage adventure. This was something different from my previous travel adventures, there were learning and enriching experiences, away from my personal travel styles and standards. Travel delays, technical hiccups, adapting to changes, all part of the unique travel experiences that makes traveling so special for us travel wanderlusts.

After returning from this trip, I know what I would need to do and plan for my future trips to Hoi An and Da Nang again, in the near future I hope. Hoi An gave me the aura, environment and ambience that might help in my history, heritage and creative artworks segments that might have an influence in my photography. Da Nang, on the other hand, gave me another totally different perspectives, views and style of photography that I would/am able to do. I will be back again to Hoi An and Da Nang, along with Hue and Hai Van Pass. I would write and share more on my travel photography adventures, destinations, food and locations at a later time when my other priorities are cleared away.

Whenever I have my personal time during my travel adventures, whether traveling betweeen destinations, I would take this time to read, think and plan, what I would like/need to do, seeking inspiration and ideas. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn’t, regardless of the situations and outcome, I will always make the best of everything.

I brought a book along for my trip, “The Little Book of IKIGAI” by Ken Mogi, I reckon it was just perfect for this particular travel adventure. During the short time that I had for my reading, I read Chapter 5 “Flow and creativity” and Chapter 6 “Ikigai and sustainability”. Some of the key phrases and lessons were “starting small”, “releasing oneself”, “harmony and sustainability”, “the joy of little things”, “being in the here and now”

The teachings from those Chapters 5 and 6, left an impact inside me, reinforcing some thoughts and ideas that I had been pondering deeply – wanting to return back to my roots on photography content that comes from my heart, mind and soul, what I really wanted to shoot, document, write and share. All the inner joys and satisfaction, I seem to have let it slip behind somewhere, now I want them to return to me again.

Borrowing a phrase from the book to paraphrase my own quote, “So make photographs, even when nobody is viewing and understanding. Write a short story from my photography and coverage that no one will read.”

The time is now for me to be my own master of “being in the here and now”.

Some of you may be able to understand, some of you may not be able to understand.

Moving forward, what I have written might come to light, through the fruits of labour that I reap and sow with my words, flow, creativity, thoughts, ideas. The puzzles and pieces, follow my flow and journeys, might produce something special and unique.

However, back to the harsh and cruel reality of the capitalist world, I am back to the grind, continue to build up my photography business. There is a commercial and revenue aspect that I need to fulfill, to earn a living and survive. Maybe an addition of another business or multiple jobs makes perfect sense in this highly disruptive world of ours today in the 21st century and beyond.

Moving forward, get the jobs done, do it well, earn the revenue to survive, grow and expand. Concurrently, I am returning back to my roots, creating quality content that my heart, mind and soul that truly tells me from inside me.

Seeking my own Ikigai

At the start of the year 2018, I shared and wrote on the changes that I wanted to make for this new year 2018 and setting my goals for year 2018, after reflecting on my year 2017. On the 10th January, the day it was marked as “Another year older (Again) in 2018”, I promised myself that I wanted to get a book on that particular day, a personal goal for myself. I wanted to buy a particular book on that day since it’s a milestone day for me. I went to Kinokuniya Bugis and it was out of stock, I was determined to buy it today and I went Kinokuniya Orchard and I managed to buy it!

A new book – The little book of Ikigai : The essential Japanese way to finding your purpose in life by Ken Mogi. This is going to be a significant moment, one of my goals for year 2018, finding my purpose, finding my direction, seeking a balance in the force.

On that day, 10th January, I started my personal journey of exploration, seeking my own Ikigai (????). Googling for the diagram representing Ikigai, I found a common diagram of four circles, intersecting together. Although it was useful, easy to use and explain, I was looking for something more therapeutic and closer to my heart. In the midst of my Google search, I discovered some gorgeous landscape photographs with the word “Ikigai”.

At that moment, I knew how I wanted to share on my journeys seeking my own Ikigai, through the landscape photographs (most likely using the monochrome landscape photographs) that I took in Hokkaido, Japan.

Flipping the little book of Ikigai, there was a note to the Reader (that’s me!)

The Five Pillars of Ikigai

Pillar 1: Starting small

Pillar 2: Releasing yourself

Pillar 3: Harmony and sustainabiliyy

Pillar 4: The joy of little things

Pillar 5: Being in the here and now

My personal journey of Ikigai exploration and discovery has started; I am finding my own Ikigai.

Another Year Older (Again) in 2018

Entering into the 10th day of the month of January, it’s the time again for me, to add another digit to an existing number, another year older (again) in the year 2018.

As I aged, matured and mellowed over the decades, birthday is a quiet affair, sometimes alone, sometimes with friends, no fanciful meals, no glamourous photos shared on social media platforms, group photos of birthday gatherings were like a thing of the past since 5 to 10 years back? I don’t even know to be honest, sometimes, the pace of life and changes were so fast and furious that we lost track of our time.

Today, as I grow a year older (again) in 2018, I had a great lunch treat by my primary school friend Wendy, over a hot bowl of Hakata Ikkousha Tonkotsu Ramen, thereafter, we had kopi-o at Ya-Kun. Chatting with old friends is priceless as we aged into the middle stages of our life.

Since my birthdays are usually quiet and low key, I don’t usually get birthday gifts, however, today I received a gift it’s all about Singapore, Heritage, History and Culture. This special package is also a Christmas gift 2017, New Year 2018 gift, a 3-in-1 gift package!

No matter what type of gift it is, I really appreciate this gift from the social media folks, Faiz, Shaun and Nicholas. Thank you very much from the bottom of my heart!

I set a goal that I wanted to get a book on my birthday today. I wanted to buy a particular book today since it’s a milestone day for me. I went to Kinokuniya Bugis and it was out of stock, I was determined to buy it today and I went Kinokuniya Orchard and I managed to buy it!

A new book – The little book of Ikigai : The essential Japanese way to finding your purpose in life. This is going to be a significant moment, one of my goals for year 2018, finding my purpose, finding my direction, seeking a balance in the force, on this day on my birthday in 2018, through this little book of Ikigai.

Adding another year (again) in 2018, I am thankful, grateful, humbled and blessed, for everything that I have in life at this juncture in time. It’s not perfect, it’s not that bad either.

Thank you to all my family, relatives and friends that stood by me, encouraged, supported me, lifted me up and pushed me from behind as I strive towards my goals.

To some of “you people”, you know who you are, I am leaving you behind and away from my life forever if I am able to.

Going to work even harder, smarter and more strategically in the year 2018! Onward!

Setting my Goals for year 2018

I have been setting my goals for the past few years (probably 10 years or more if I recalled correctly), yet when I looked back and searched for my goal settings articles, it was like all over the place inside here, maybe under a different heading and different stages in my life and timeline.

Today, I would be writing and sharing on my personal goals settings for the year 2018, my goal settings for my photography business, personal photography and travel would not be published inside here, they should be published soon.

Over the past month, December 2017, I did quite a fair bit of personal reflection, preparing myself what I wanted to do and achieve for my goals in the year 2018. Some of my goals were more inner and personal goals than monetary or achievement goals.

  • Healthy and active sporting lifestyle (Disciplined exercise regime) – No excuses for myself, I had been lazy, slacking and ill-disciplined in this aspect. I need to get my lazy self up and exercising regularly and consistently again. With a healthy mindset, body, mind and soul, it would assist me in taking on all the challenges, stress and pressure of running a small photography business in an era of highly disruptive and competitive economy. Not to forget mentioning that being healthy and active is something that money can’t buy.
  • Read more books – Reading helps to soothe my mind, heart and soul, as well as adding knowledge, skills and understanding of things/matters in different industries, societies and people. I haven’t been reading more than I would love to. Moving forward in the year 2018, I want to read more books from a diverse nature and genres.
  • FOREX / Alternative Investments / Trading – These alternative investments areas were something that I embarked upon a few years back, however, I didn’t have the persistency and discipline to maintain and continue the journey due to a different direction and goals settings during that period of time. Thanks to Pro Traders Academy in 2017, I am back, revising and preparing to enter into these alternative investments again, building up a side income and funds for my future.
  • Learn new skills and knowledge – Learning is a lifelong philosophy and we must keep on learning and gaining new skills and knowledge, changing and adapting in this climate of constant and highly disruptive economy and society. I started using SkillsFuture in 2017 and I would continue to find new courses to learn new skills and knowledge, adding them to my existing skills and knowledge setup.
  • Avoid and stay away from negative and nasty people – I had seen my fair share of negative and nasty people, who just have a knack for imposing everything of themsleves on other people. There are times whereby they don’t want you to succeed, they want you to fail, their words are nasty and hurting. These type of people really affect me, while people beside me can easily said that I can don’t listen to them and let them affect me, I still got infected and got affected by them, resulting in some hindrance in my journey. The time has come to protect myself from the negative and nasty people by avoiding and staying away from them.
  • Decluttering + Minimalist – It didn’t occur to me how therapeutic it can be for me, decluttering the many physical items in my life. Sometimes, the human race is chasing a lot of physical goods and commodities, there’s no internal and emotional fulfillment at times. Decluttering started in mid 2017, when I did spring cleaning of my room, re-arranging of my cabinets before helping to rearrange some of the cabinets in my living room. There’s some progress, there’s still a lot of work to be done. Next up is Minimalist, would I ever be able to achieve it? I don’t know, to be honest. It’s like an utopia somehow, however, it can be done, the question is, do I want to achieve it?
  • Embrace change and disruption – Although I mentally, emotionally and psychologically prepared myself for change in 2017, the huge waves of changes and disruptions were even more higher and powerful than I initially prepared myself for. Year 2017 became another learning curve for me, I am telling myself and preparing myself again, to embrace change and disruption (reminder that it might even get bigger, higher and powerful than previous editions)
  • STOP Overthinking – It’s one of my flaws that I personally and publicly acknowledged. Taking the steps to stop overthinking, it might not be easy and I am taking the first step.
  • STOP Putting Myself Down – Many a times, I let the words of negative and nasty people into my head, mind and soul, the Bad Wolf started to eat me up inside, transforming into thoughts that made me put myself down. The time also come for me to put a STOP to this.
  • Ikigai – ????, this is something that I am going to discover myself and search for it, the reason.
  • The subtle art of not giving a f*@k – There are a few, maybe a number of people out there that I will not be giving a damn of what you say, comment, feedback or criticize. It’s not that I can’t take criticisms, feedbacks or comments. It’s not the same at all.

To some of you, this may not be the “standards” of goals settings. It’s not for you, this is for me and myself only.