Ignite Your Passion (Pt 2)

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Booking under: Nicole

As I write this, I am landing on the other side of the world with my family. It’s been a while since I had a long vacation with them so I am thankful to have this opportunity to break away from work and routine to relax and simply spend some quality time together.

Being away didn’t stop me from keeping my commitments this month. Instead, it gave me good food for thought. Let’s see how I did.

1. Make Time


Hello baby, mind turning around? I got plenty of time to babysit you for a day.

My commitment here was to reduce the time spent on random online articles and make time for more meaningful reading. I am glad to share that things have been going smoothly. While I read news online every day, I have significantly reduced the time spent on browsing sites like Buzzfeed that often publishes posts such as “7 Self Care Tips To Try This Week” or “18 Cake Fails That Are Guaranteed To Make You Laugh“. The result is obvious, and allows me to pick up a book that I’ve started a while ago.

Published by German engineering giant Siemens, the book analyzes Industry 4.0 – the digitalization of automation and data exchange (and beyond) in the manufacturing sectors. Since I don’t have any prior knowledge in engineering, this allows me to read the book with a fresh and open mind. And although the topic is not directly related to what I am doing at work, I found it beneficial to absorb new knowledge in the computerized manufacturing space and get a deeper understanding of what’s happening in the market. Who knows? Maybe my future work will intersect with what I am reading today!

2. Forget About Results

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Forget about summer and feel fall in the air.

I struggle with what to write for this ironic topic when looking at the Premier League score earlier this week.  As much as I enjoyed watching the games, my all-time favorite (and second favorite 😛 ) football team experienced sad defeat. Obviously it is a devastating result but I know the lads will come back stronger in the next game. In any competitions, and for sports in particular, the nature of human existence implies we all want to win. I figured the same logic applies to playing board games too.

Last week, Keith and I had a fun board game session with my friends. Having a decent size of four players, we played several intense grabbing games to warm up (both our fingers and brains) before getting to Ticket To Ride. When playing this game, I always followed my rule of thumb (proven successful for a few times) and adapted the strategy to the real-time situation, hoping to build a train network that would dominate Greyhound and then win the game. Being strategic, patient, and visionary was critical to the process of building the train segments successfully. Of course I wanted to win but wasn’t too obsessed about it as I just wanted to enjoy a good moment with the group. Thanks to sheer luck, I won the game at the end.

From last month

I confess that I haven’t been regularly documenting what I am grateful for every other day.  While I do night prayer of thanks every night and still keep a gratitude journal, I only write down the positive events when I feel like it . It’s definitely something to be done in a more systematic way and to work on going forward. As for imitating a spiritual master, I watched a TED talk given by Angela Duckworth recently. Her research on grit is insightful as it focused on helping children actively learn and adapt in the face of defeat. This idea corresponds with Sheryl Sandberg’s work-in-progress book on resilience and reminds me that good character and perseverance really sets success people apart. I look forward to reading more writings on this topic to drive self improvement and growth.

Summing Up

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In a nutshell, I am on track of delivering the results from the two commitments. Just speaking passionately won’t boost my happiness level unless I am committed to my passion project and make time for it. I shall continue cultivating this reading habit and fit in more readings in my leisure time.

By this time in September, school has already started for most college students. Looking at the photos shared by our junior fellows in the States just makes us miss our school a little more. We thought the last week of September is a perfect moment to give you a virtual tour of these places and also let us recapture the good old memories in the past.

So…. where exactly are we going to introduce? Hint: an Absolutely-Attractive city in the Midwest and a city with Leading-Actors in the West Coast. Another Hint: these two places experience extreme weather difference. Regardless, we both had unforgettable times there and are very excited to share the best things these two places offer. Come back next week as we disclose the destinations and travel back in time with us!


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