Less is more.
The ability to be content with what you need instead of continually craving for what you want - this is rare. Now, there seems to be a growing awareness of what life might be like as a minimalist. Just surviving, no, thriving, and finding more meaning to life than merely accumulating material possessions, this could be a wave that could become big.
Imagine yourself being surrounded, even cramped, with things all around. The more you have, the more there is to maintain, to care for, to look after. More to clean, more to fix, more to arrange and to tidy up and to wash and make space for.
And for another second imagine yourself with very little around you. The bareness would seem empty, save but the knowledge that you have what you need. That might sound a bit scary, because we're so used to distractions and things to do and stuff chase after. What would we do?
Perhaps we'd be drawn to a sickening situation where we'd have to think and ponder and consider what is important, worthwhile and purposeful in our life or in the lives of those who matter to us.
Fancy that. Maybe in this bareness, we could find some treasure.
It's the festive period with Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year packing the final quarter of the year with much reason (or excuses) to celebrate, and with that comes the usual merriment with much eating and drinking.
I've always thought that people who are of normal weight would be healthier than those classified as obese. And I've found out very recently that this is not necessarily the case as it may appear.
Studies show that folks who are not obese also suffer (in a high percentage) from diseases such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes and hypertension. These diseases have spiked as never before over the past few decades not only in the United States, but worldwide. I wondered about the reason for this, and even more so as I have found my own blood pressure readings to have unexpectedly increased over the past few months. Obviously I was concerned.
A program on my favourite radio station led me to some research done by Dr. Robert Lustig from the University Of California, San Francisco (UCSF). He talked about how the food industry has cleverly put sugar in abundance in our beverages and food. Little did I know that our body has a mechanism to tell us when to stop eating. Surprisingly, sugar disrupts that mechanism and so we don't know when to stop "stuffing our faces". The consequences are that we keep consuming more than our body needs (or even wants), and we're loaded with too much sugar and food, which eventually makes us sick.
Dr. Lustig also talked interestingly about how we shouldn't be counting calories the way we do, i.e calories taken in by food = calories burned + stored. He disagrees with this thinking because calories are different based on the various types of food we consume and on the human body's biochemical processes involved.
For me, this podcast and the Youtube lecture on Dr. Lustig's topic, "Sugar: The Bitter Turth", are life-changing. I'd highly recommend young and old alike to spend some time evaluating his thoughts and to consider how your health could be improved for the long term. Here are the links:
Podcast On BFM.my : http://www.bfm.my/dr-robert-lustig-the-evils-of-sugar.html
Youtube Lecture: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dBnniua6-oM
If you share my concern about health especially in the way we eat, join me and make a change for the better.
Go forth and be awesome!
p.s. Would love to hear from you! Write me at patrick [at] simplicate.biz
It is better to give than to receive.
Giving is an art, and this art requires some thought. After all, what's the reason for the gift? It might be to please the recipient as part of an obligation, or it could be because the recipient is someone you truly appreciate.
Here are some do's and don'ts to consider when it comes to gifts and giving. You probably know it already, but a little reminder won't hurt:
1) Do make the gift presentable. Wrap it, attach a pretty ribbon, put it in a nice bag.
Something that represents the item being a gift. Looks do matter, and first impressions, whether it be people or things, tend to linger in our minds.
2) Do pick the best, if not perfect, timing to present your gift. Early is good, on time,
perhaps but never, ever late. Gifts that are received late would be perceived to be an afterthought. You'd want the recipient to know that you're sincere, because you are (right?).
3) Do make the gift something that's borne out of thought and effort. These two factors are what makes the gift special and memorable.
1) Don't show up empty handed. Ever. It might be tempting to think that the birthday boy or girl would just be thrilled to have you attend the party, and you might be told that you don't need to bring anything but yourself and your appetite. Whether you're the best of friends or just acquaintances, a little gesture is not going to hurt. Besides, it's courtesy.
2) Don't spend beyond your means. At times we might get carried away and wish to get the perfect gift, even though it might be a little beyond what we can afford. Gifts don't have to be expensive to be appreciated. A little time and effort can go a long way to finding or making a gift that will be truly liked and appreciated.
3) Don't expect something in return. Yes, when it's your birthday or anniversary celebration coming up next, perhaps there might be some expectations when it comes to gifts that you'd expect to receive. I suggest to let it go. You might be happier that way. Give without expecting to receive in return.
Write to Patrick for feedback and thoughts!
Gold Gift Boxes - Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net