Saturday, May 21, 2011

Are You Happy with Your Life?

A group of alumni, all highly established in their respective careers, gathered for a visit with their old university professor. The conversation soon turned to complaints about the endless stress of work and life in general.

Offering his guests coffee, the professor went into the kitchen and soon returned with a large pot of coffee and an eclectic assortment of cups: porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal - - some plain, some expensive, some quite exquisite. Quietly he told them to help themselves to some fresh coffee...

When each of his former students had a cup of coffee in hand, the old professor quietly cleared his throat and began to patiently address the small gathering. "You may have noticed that all of the nicer looking cups were taken up first, leaving behind the plainer and cheaper ones. While it is only natural for you to want only the best for yourselves - that is actually the source of much of your stress-related problems..."

"Be assured that the cup itself adds no quality to the coffee. In fact, the cup merely disguises or dresses up what we drink. What each of you really wanted was coffee, not a cup, but you instinctively went for the best cups... Then you began eyeing each other's cups...."

"Now consider this. Life is coffee. Jobs, money, and position in society are merely cups. They are just tools to shape and contain life, and the type of cup we have does not truly define nor change the quality of the life we live. Often, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee that God has provided us... God brews the coffee, but He does not supply the cups. Enjoy your coffee!''

The happiest people don't HAVE the best of everything; they just MAKE the best of everything...

Friday, May 20, 2011

Post-Exam Entertainment

So this was my list of what-to-do after exam and before my departure to Germany (20 n 21 May):

1. Clean-up my room and pack-up my stuffs. I have lots of stuffs,they are now in 3 huge bags, like 80x60x30 cm size! Books,paper and stationaries are in 2 medium cardboard boxes. I separate them because I dont want those heavy books damage my lovely bags.
2. Watch the movie: HOME and JESUS . Both are super great, impactful! The Jesus film is classic 2-hour movie and offered in more than 1,000 languages. I found it accidentaly when I googled for Jesus. Yeah; nowadays, when you wanna know about someone or something, you google it, as simple as that. Just try to find the right keyword to express what you want.
3. Study in ALISON. What is it?! I was surfing the net for writing jobs when I found these courses on writing. As I am interested in taking such courses, I browse deeper and the fees was like 400 GBP! For an online course, that's expensive. Hence I googled for Free Online Writing Course, which reflected this ads, Alison free online course . Few minutes after looking through, I bookmarked it. It is simply good resource for those who want to learn, you don't even have to pay. And the quality of teaching is good as well. I am proud to say that I just acquired Diploma in Social Media Marketing :D
4. Purchase a digital camera and backpack for my Eurotrip. I bought this camera for S$160!
It is a Canon Ixus 100 IS, bought from a seller in, and with recommendation of my friend, Agus. The dimension is very tiny, only about 8x5 cm; with gold hued body, it is perfect for travel purpose. For the backpack, I bought this Billabong backpack at Raffles City. Billabong bags are of good quality, extremely strong and durable. That's why I like it. This new design is enhanced with laptop cushion, pockets inside, and waterproof material.
5. Last but not least, I plan to write for this blog. I'm writing 3 posts today, though I feel it's still not enough. I always want to post more, yet no time to write. I wanna write about my God and his mighty works, about my work and supervisor in library, about Schengen visa application, about my struggles, about my exams, and the list goes on. I love writing, and it was my first career option result in the Harrisson Assesment. Yeah, I am not going to pursue it full-time, but I just want to give more focus into it and polish my skills so it can be better used for His kingdom.

Have a nice and fruitful holiday everyone!

Choosing The Right Partner For Life

In this sermon, Ps Kong Hee explains what makes a relationship work and what should we look for when choosing a life partner. The key to choosing the right partner is to look for a person with good character, not simply good personality. A relationship may be likened to a cake, where personality is the icing, and the character, the substance.
When you are deciding whether a person is right for you, instead of asking: "Does my partner love me?" You need to ask, "How capable is my partner of loving?". If he has anger problem, hasn't "grown up", can't be firm with overbearing parents or hasn't recovered from previous relationships, he is incapable of loving you. Period.

Quality #1: Commitment to personal growth.
This comes first because it is the most important trait. If you can find someone who is committed to his personal growth, you are already halfway to a great, happy marriage. Commitment to personal growth means:
a) your partner is committed to God's Word and a godly lifestyle. You want a partner who is on-fire and sold-out to Jesus, growing steadily in spiritual maturity on a daily basis. The Word of God is the answer for all life's problems. You don't want to be unequally yoked with a potential spouse who doesn't share your dedication to the Lord.
b) your partner is willing to receive help and guidance. Help in the form of books, tapes, sermons, and if necessary, counseling. Proverbs 12:1 says that you must want to be taught in order to learn. Because by the time you face a crisis in your marriage, and you realize that your mate is too lazy to learn how make it works, it is often too late.
c) your partner is conscious of his blind spots and emotional handicaps. It is dangerous to become involved with someone who is oblivious to his own weaknesses. James 5:16 says that to see healing of painful wounds, we need to admit our faults to one another and pray for each other.
d) your partner is setting personal goals for real change. In other words, you can see, specific, positive changes in him over time. It is important to find someone who is not only interested in growing, but is doing something about it.

Quality #2: Emotional openness.
Emotional openness is a vital trait because it gives you access to his soul. If your partner can't identify and share his feelings with you, he's not ready to be in an intimate relationship. Staying in a relationship with a person who cannot share feelings is a form of self-punishment. You need to believe God for someone who can show you love and appreciation on a consistent basis.

Qaulity #3: Integrity.
This means consistency of character. Your actions match your words. Your choices match your vision. Your behaviours match your beliefs.
a) Honest with himself: he is not self-deceptive.
b) Honest with others: he is not cheating, evading taxes, hiring illegal workers, stealing office supplies, run across the road when the light is red, litter when no one is watching, etc.
c) Honest with you: he is not playing games with your feelings.

Quality #4: Maturity and responsibilty. There are people who just aren't ready to be in a committed relationship. They may be very loveable, but if they haven't reach a certain level of maturity, you will feel you have adopted a child rather than a lover.
a) He can take care of himself. If your partner has grown up sufficiently, he should be able to earn enough money to support himself, keep his bedroom relatively clean, know basic personal hygiene, etc. Our outward life is a reflection of our inward life.
b) He is responsible. Maturity doesn't come with age; it comes with the acceptance of responsibility. Your word is your bond-paying bills on time, keeping promises, punctuality, etc.
c) He is respectful. Men don't behave badly in public places. See how respectful is he of your boundaries, time, possessions, and other people's feelings.

Quality #5: Healthy self-esteem. Your partner can only love you as much as he loves himself. The healthier your partner's self-esteem, the stronger your relationship will be.
a) He knows who he is in Christ.
b) He doesn't abuse himself, but takes good care of himself. You can tell how someone feels about himself by observing how he treats himself, the way he takes care of his body, his clothes, his car, and his possessions. If he mistreats himself, he won't mind mistreating you either.
c) He doesn't allow others to abuse him. Christian meekness doesn't mean you purposely let others take advantage of you continually.
d) He takes action in his life. A person with low self-esteem is usually a procrastinator, because he is scared of failing and feeling worse about himself.

Quality #6: Positive attitude toward life. Positive people create positive relationships. That is why falling in love with a negative person is as much fun as listening to someone slowly scratching his fingernails across a blackboard! Love is positive. It shrinks in negative atmosphere. When you are with positive person, relationship is much easier, more love, less blame, and more cooperation.

Quality #7: Personal chemistry. How does one define personal chemistry? It is very hard. You either feel it or you don't. But one thing is certain: personal chemistry is needed in order to distinguish your relationship from a friendship. A word of caution: personal chemistry doesn't have to be instant. Gradual attraction is usually more genuine because you are not just focusing on the physical looks, but the whole person. You can't have a healthy, lasting, romantic relationship with someone you aren't attracted to. In this case, you are setting yourself to cheat on that person eventually.
You can't create personal chemistry. The lost spark can be regained by the grace of God, through counseling or books. However, if you never felt personal chemistry to your partner even after reasonable period of seeing each other, don't proceed! Personal chemistry is vital, but must be balanced by the first six qualities earlier.

Hey, Are You Feeling Stressed?

Tackling Exam Stress
- Start revision early.
- Stick to your revision timetable.
- Set realistic targets by knowing your strengths and weaknesses.
- Do not hesitate to seek help when in doubt.
- Be confident and do not forget your daily quiet time.

Staying Positive
- Believe that you can face any challenge. Though you can't, Jesus can, so keep Him inside you.
- See positive side of any situation. There is always opportunity in crisis.
- Mistakes are learnt from failures. Though learning from other people's mistakes is better...just take the lesson and move on.
- Be strong, remember you're in good hands of God and His plans are higher than yours.

Managing Anger
- Do not use hurtful words. Simply walk away.
- Take a deep breath (breathing from tummy instead of chest) and pray that your joy would not be taken by the devil.
- Think through the problem and resolve it calmly and rationally.
- Apologise for any mistakes.
- Rebuke the actions and mistakes, not the person.
- Forgive and forget their mistakes, just like what Jesus had done to us.

De-stressing and Relaxing
- Talk to God, family, or friends.
- Exercise or play games with friends.
- Go for a movie or read your favourite book.
- Clean up your room/house and decorate it with your favourite theme.
- Indulge in a complete bath experience. Soap, scrub, mask, shampoo, conditioner, face exfoliant, mouthwash, hair-trimming, lavender aromatherapy, perfecto!
- Have enough sleep.

Friends, this is actually coping strategies I adopt to deal with some stressors in life. Hopefully these may help you to cope with yours too!