I used to believe that money had been the reason why a corporation would stop to innovate, a politician would become corrupted, and how a family would break apart. During my studies of great innovators and leaders, I saw a different pattern on how important people of this world use money — they'd give the more they earn. I wondered then, could money adopt different attributes based on who utilizes it. It taunts on me that money is simply a reflection of our own integrity and our opinions of ourselves. Money is not evil nor a vehicle for self-fulfillment; it can be a way of life, and it is life.
To Evna, my daughter:
Today marks your first year of being on this earth. I'm extremely grateful you're finally now in my life. You've taught me so much on being kind, gentle, grateful, and happy. You've warmed the hearts of those around you. That of which is your greatest strength. And for that, you must use it for the goodness of others.
A star in the sky is perceived as one dimensional — a dot. A closer heavenly body would be acknowledged as 2 dimensional being a circle. Approaching one even closer, it could finally be seen as 3 dimensional. Orbiting around the star or planet would make it a 4-dimensional object since we can start to see it rotates and moves through time. Evolutionary theories allow me to speculate that our senses are only as effective to a point where our survival is ensured. We don't really need to see Andromeda in the sky at night, but we need to see the moon or the north star to navigate in the dark.
Our environment constantly changes, and we constantly change. Reading is like eating in a sense that we always tend to buy more food at a grocery store when we're hungry. Say we lack motivations now, so we buy all the good audiobooks on motivations. After reading 2 of those books do we realize we're ready to put what we know to practice and need to read about how to start a company for example. Do we continue to finish all those motivational books?
I spend almost every waking hours thinking about how I can help members of my family to live a better life. How I can resolve conflicts, how I can inspire them to have a goal in life, how I can share my knowledge I gain from listening to all those audiobooks. I'm doing all those things to make people around me stronger and better than I am. I want to see them live a great life and thrive; their lives are more important than mine. I'm doing all those things just so I can have a great life, so I can live happily with respect, fame, and money. Does that make sense?
What would I wish to have achieved if I could live for eternity? In this mindset, wether or not we could finish that goal within our lifetime isn’t important anymore, so what’s more important is what is it we want to accomplish or contribute in a grander scale. We always know we are going to die some point yet it is covered up by some psychological barriers. It is that fear we will die someday dictates our day-to-day.
By Ed Catmull
★★★★☆ (Recommended) Read from May 11 to September 28, 2015
Amazon's Link: http://amzn.to/1ZikwdT
On top of learning the inside workings of one of the greatest companies in the world, Ed shares numerous timeless wisdoms in the book from his experience in Pixar. He is not just a creative and business genius but a philosopher who seeks not just the craft of his expertise but the truth of life; you don't have to be in the technology nor the entertainment industry to learn from the book. This book doesn't teach you how to be a better manager nor a leader but simply inspires you to be a better human whose goal is to make people around you better you are. This book shares one of the highest altruistic standard in understanding of our world.
What I learned about fear from most recognized leaders is that it is one of the worst traits to possess if you want succeed in any aspect of life. I noticed too that indeed everything and every decision I've ever made based on fear ended up unfavorably. Fear is about focus. Whenever a negative outcome is focused to be avoided, it is achieved. In that sense, we should always do something not because we want to avoid a certain outcome, but because we want to attain a certain outcome. To be fearless is a hard mindset to adopt: Most of the time, I would say “Let’s not do this because I fear it would…”. When it really should be “Let’s do that instead because it would help us to…”. That's a big difference.
Wooden: A Lifetime of Observations and Reflections On and Off the Court
by John Wooden
★★★★★ (Highly Recommended) Read in July, 2015
Amazon's Link: http://amzn.to/1Lkkf49
Not just one of the best motivational but one of the best books I've ever read. Although John Wooden is a basketball coach, what he aims for is building extraordinary human beings than players. He's proud of his players go into pro, but he's more pleased to learn his players become successful lawyers and doctors. His philosophies on building better characters and teams can easily apply to other fields of work and life, so you don't need to be into sports to understand the fundamental concepts of his ideals. Additionally, it's incredible to find many of his beliefs are in line with other timeless philosophers: Confucius, Socrates, Marcus Aurelius, Lincoln, and more. This is a book I'd read many times.
By Andy Weir
★★★★★ (Highly Recommended) Read from April 22 to May 08, 2015
Amazon's Link: http://amzn.to/1Mh06s9
The Martian is a great in a way that when Mark tries to strategize how to maximize the resources around him to stay alive, it makes me realize how I would and should take advantages of the resources around me to maximize the efficiency of my day-to-day decisions. The book is an epic adventure. Weir is able to paint and inspire an epic alien world with minimal descriptions. The pace of the book is very well carried out: the contrast between action and suspense is what makes the book extremely addictive. The story and its emotional journey makes sense, and so does the science, which not a lot of science fiction can get right. I'm very impressed with the book and plan to read it again in the near future.
“A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” —Mahatma Gandhi
The technology of AI achieves major advancement in recent years. Our question about its future has slowly become more philosophical than technical. Creators believe it will be inherently good while Steven Hawkins, Bill Gates and others apprehend its existence.
“Successful people are simply those with successful habits.” —Brian Tracy
When I first learned the habits of successful people, I was astounded — they lead such inspiring lives, which makes their success seem rather reasonable as a result of their lifestyle and discipline. I was anxious to adopt many of their habits thinking even if I don’t achieve success in my life and career, I’d live a better life regardless.
Quotes, understood through life experiences, can serve as one of the most inspired form of communication with immense knowledge. We all want to start each year with a new hope, and I guess what that really means is bringing changes to our lives, but what does that really mean? And why are “exercise” related search results extremely popular only in January and then slowly dies out the following months. Doesn’t that kind of defeat the whole purpose of change if it cannot sustain?
I started listening to more audiobooks now that I have more chores as a stay-at-home dad. Starting to read again changed how I see the world for inspirations, how I see the good in people and things, what it means to create for the world, and what it means to live for other people. I’d agree as Gandhi once said, “A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” How we present ourselves is really a direct reflection of our mind, our subconscious. Our life is the message to the world. Make sure it’s inspiring.
To be inventive, we must first position ourselves in the environment to be inventive. An inspiring environment is one that inspires us unconsciously: How the pedestrians are dressed, what the radio station is broadcasting, is there enough exposure to nature, does the sun brighten the room in the morning, or what your friends are sharing on Twitter will all affect our behaviors and thoughts in the most unconscious manner that makes us who we are.
I had always thought horoscope was a myth celebrated only by the popular culture. The accuracy of the system though was astounding indeed, so that eventually led me on a quest to understand the subject through a series of empirical research. Believing in the stars’ gravitational force or any mystical force could could alter our behaviors just seem unrealistic comparing to the force of a storm for example. Immediate earthly environmental influence seems to be the way to understand how ancient people came up with this sophisticated system that predetermines human personalities.
Our consciousness is based on our subconsciousness the way our earth’s surface is based on its molten core. It is hard to imagine something as concrete and beautiful as the surface could be floating on something that is fluid and dangerous. I’m a believer of the kind of evolutionary theory that explains the way we look and behave are based on the environment we come from. A recent personal experiment led me to believe that our minds may indeed be working in a similar way our earth does.
We don’t level up the way game characters do: It’s not a steady progression. In real life, we progress, and then we regress the next day. It is such regression discourages commitments. I slowly started to notice when I began working out at 30. I would look strong one day and flabby the next. Only when I understand I'm working out for my health and to listen to audiobooks did I slowly make it a prevailing habit. Having a setback is unavoidable and is necessary to push us to mastery.