Pithy Vignette #1: On the right path?

What’s really behind all the “trusting yourself, trusting the process”…

Think Fluidly: Salutations

Some background note: I’m experiencing glorious & youthful days of what people call 20-something period and I’m going to complete my 23rd trip around the sun this December. In retrospect, I consider myself lucky to have the privilege to be a part of a youth-led organization named AIESEC during my university life. This community led me to countless personal development opportunities, opening the door to many of my childhood dreams and essentially helped me emerge better version of myself. After 4 years of going all-out in this roller coaster journey, I reached the finish line in June 2016.

Bewilderment and nonchalance came as the inevitable consequence. Fragmented thoughts, abstract ideas and scattered questions are all over the place. I found myself on a regular basis with the mixed feeling of contentment when a whole new world is wide open and uncertainty of what choices I should make for this window of opportunity. I took it as a sign from my mind telling me to wrap up the whole experience to bring back the stream of consciousness.

So I decided to push my limits by jotting down the latest thoughts I have about life and develop them into a piece of writing weekly. I had never been much of a writer (and I don’t think I will ever be). But anyway, life is all about trying new things to surprise yourself.

Most of things I write about are those close to my heart: life lessons, moment of realization, leadership & management, …and also random thoughts from music, manga & movies. To be honest, it’s very personal. So it’s not for everyone. However, if you see what I see, feel what I feel, and we share the same monkey mind, then feel free to subscribe and share it. I’ll be humbled. Or you do me a favor by referring to any interesting articles you think I should check it out. I’d love to read more, and learn more of your work :)

How I structure my writing:

  • Think Fluidly: how I shape my thinking for my life mission.
  • Sketch This Brief Life: what I observe and get from the world.
  • A Moment Like This: random stuffs inspire me along the way.

Off to the first strand of thought.

Sketch This Brief Life: Trusting the Process

I’ve come to appreciate many sacred things in life, even some clichés. Trusting the process is one of them.

In the recent years, there is an increasing plethora of inspirational speeches and encouragement on how we should live in the moment and believe in destiny, instinct, karma, or whatever it is that life will eventually unfold itself. This idea is ubiquitous, from the famous commencement speech “Connect the Dots” of Steve Jobs at the Stanford University in 2005, to various books like The Gift of Fear, Powered by Instinct, and tons of articles on passion, purpose of life, etc…

The funny thing I see is that words of wisdom only dawn on people when they experience life to the point they get old and wise. Thus, when looking back, they are able to curate things that work well and combine them together. For instance, Jobs attributed the valuable experience he got from the calligraphy instruction at Reed College to the later success of designing Mac as the very first computer with wonderful typography. Yet, the Calligraphy course is among 30 (or more) modules he registered during university time that turned out to be right. How about the rest? How about hundreds of hour in ancient Greek and Roman humanities classroom which might have little to do with Jobs’s success?

The same thing is true in my case. Some folks ask me why I can manage to sketch out a big picture plan with complex & excruciating details.

  • I can attribute it to my Mom’s teaching to be wont to orchestrate everything carefully in the early days.
  • Or thanks to years of doing repeatedly the cycle of planning — implementation — review — replaning in AIESEC.
  • And because during school time, I see how teachers suck when they do not prepare their lecture in advance.
  • Even my failure in playing online games when battling without clear tactics has something to do with it as well.

I can think of hundreds of moments and life events to arrange and narrate an inspiring story how I connect my dots together. And it’s neither right nor wrong. In the end, our decision and past experience is merely a fact sheet. Things make sense as soon as we assign some hidden meanings to them and from that moment, even the littlest thing can create the butterfly effect.

Then, what truly matters, if it’s not about being right?

The destination is a mystery. The journey is complicated. Why bother picking and choosing each stop we pass by? Just find the best companion to enjoy the ride instead. We cannot know whether we are doing it right, but we do know the feeling of sheer happiness.

Happiness is like a spoonful of sugar helps the journey go down smoothly. Once we let happiness glow, we start giving ourselves the permission to program our life the way we want it to be.

In every choice I’ve made, I always find an crucial element of fun that fuel my happiness, despite all inconvenience & brake. I find the fun, and snap, the rest becomes a piece of cake. This is how the cliché works for me. After all, “A cliché is a cliché because it works.” — Feige Gornish

A Moment Like This

When I observe the course of recent events, trying to figure out how it works, I start noticing a certain pattern. And CLAMP did sum up precisely my realization in the famous manga ×××Holic

But more on that in another time.

And yeah, you have made it to the end!

Thank you for reading ❤ Ode to an awesome week :)