On the night of 30th of December 2016, an email notification pop up on my computer While I was working from home on the last Friday before 2016 wrapped up. It was from a dear friend, who has experienced some big changes and Challenges in life, and that email was the entire reason that inspired me for my post blog for 2017. So Goodbye 2016, and Hello 2017!
Jen unveiled the curtain of her email with the biggest changes in her life and her adventures during 2016, but what inspired me the most was her shared goals for 2017 and her top reads for 2016. For Someone is an entrepreneur who quitted a very rewarding full time job to take challenges for a start-up, her positive vibe and energy made my start to wonder: am I doing enough for my life, am I achieving enough for someone who is at my age, and how have I inspired others in my day to day life.
2016 was wrapped up with some big changes in my life. Starting this blog was definitely one of them. I have no shame to admit that I have struggled a big time to manage between my 70+ hour work week on top of this blogging life, at the same time I was trying to fit in my workout schedules, social life and my 152 flights I’ve had for 2016. My biggest learning from that was to prioritise and to have a routine life during the days that I didn’t travel. I have assigned certain times to blog each day and I always put my phone away during work and the time I spend with my family and friends. I have even turned off my Instagram notifications so I won’t get distracted while doing other things. Being focused at each thing I do important to me. On top of the new blog that I was started during 2016, One other exciting journey that I’ve started for 2016 was my newly founded nutrition business – Taki Mai – it’s a supplement drink for people who suffer from insomnia, jet lags, help them to distress and manage their stress levels. What motivated me to start this business? As many of you do know that I’m actually fitness addict. Given my long working hours during the day, sometimes I don’t get to hit to the gym till like 8 – 9pm at night. Most of the time I struggled to sleep after an intensive workout session, especially after my Muay Thai classes. I’m sure many of you probably have shared the same experience as I do, and that was one of the main reasons why I started this Taki Mai business – I want help people to calm down and chill before you head to bed, whether it’s because they have a tough day at work, experiencing so hard time with their personal lives or just simply because they had a very intensive workout session at the gym. Either way, Taki Mai is there to help people to have a good night of sleep and they will wake up fresh without feeling any drowsiness. Not mentioning all the small and big milestones I have achieved throughout 2016, along with all the adventures I have shared with my friends and the loved ones. 2016 has been a year filled with explorations and achievements. I hope you too had some good memories they you can hold onto for 2016.
As for 2017, I’m looking forward to another awesome and definitely a better year for my finance career ( I don’t want to bored you, but I’m writing this big thematic report on the energy sector in China, and providing investment advises on which energy sector among the traditional coal, oil and gas, nuclear , hydro, solar and wind, would be a better short-term or long term pick for the equity holders) and step up with my blogging work. I feel honoured to begin my 2017 with a collaboration with Tom Ford for their newly launched 23 additional boy name colours. Attending Calzedonia’s SS2017 fashion show in Verona has been another event I’ve been looking forward to for 2017. Taki Mai is going to my baby project for 2017, although that I have only soft launched it on the website, I’m planning to excel it with full speed for the upcoming year. I have started a media champion with the Cathay Pacific pilots and Taki Mai will fly with them to every Corner of the world with a snap with some magnificent landscape as the backdrop. (Follow the Takimaistore on Instagram for some of the most amazing and exotic travel destination snaps). What excites me the most are the adventure trips I have planned for 2017. Beginning with a ski trip in Austria in January, followed by the London visit to celebrate my birthday with my bestie from Melbourne and her birthday ( Aries babies), and we will be heading to Iceland for the best northern lights in 18 years! As many of you may know that I’m someone who is always up for impulsive trips, so here’s another: camping and road trip in yellow stone national park and Zion national park. Tanzania is also in my plan for 2017 to watch the great migration. Hopefully by September I will still have enough leaves for another 10 days in the wild wild Africa!
A year cannot be well planned but lacking of goals. I’m actually writing this post during my flight back to Hong Kong from Melbourne. As I watched the calmness of the blue sky and bed of clouds, I have actually drifted far for a while and sink deep into my thoughts. There are many things I want to achieve for 2017 as for self-improvements, but let’s be real, people often are so ambitious at the beginning of the year with the thousands of ambitious goals they have set, nevertheless, how of those they have actually achieved – I would say probably only half of that, or maybe even less. How many of you actually said to yourself you will excise more and eat heather for the upcoming year and how long did that motivation last ? I guess, most people won’t go last beyond the first quarter. Instead of ambitious sky high goals, let’s be realistic and set goals step by step. In that way, we can give ourselves a pad on the shoulder for everywhere small goal and it feels good to tick off something on our list! Here are some of my goals I want to share with you for my self-improvements.
- learn how to prioritise. In a fast paced city like Hong Kong, it is filled with temptations and distractions, it is important to know where to drawn the line. Of cause we all need to have fun in life and it’s a way of helping us to distress in life, however, where do you draw the line? Do you want to call in for a sick day just because you’ve had too much to drink the night before? As for me, my biggest weakness is that I struggle to say no to people. My recently read ‘the ‘The Essentialist’ by Greg McKeown has taught me that people who over committed themselves have often stretched themselves too thin then they ended up disappointing everyone for not being able to deliver their promises or commitments. So be selected and only commit to the things within your actual capacities. It’s okay to say no to people if you feel like if you won’t be able to fulfil your commitment. That is definitely something I have to learn and polish in for 2017.
- Being more present! This might sound very easy to achieve, but when you actually start to practice it, you will find it it’s not as easy as you thought. ‘Being present’ is the concept first introduced to me via Eckhart Tolle’s ‘The Power of Now’. I was very confused and lost during the first 3 chapters. That was also during the time I was very sick in the Hospital waiting for multiple surgeries. ‘The power of now’ has taught me how to see life from a different perspective and angle, and it has brought me enlightenment when I was going through a tough time life in lying in the hospital bed feeling helpless. So, what is the power is now? It is about being present, being focused about your present moment, be aware and appreciate your present moments, without be held back with your past or to concerned about that your future. Nothing matters more than your present moments. One way to help you to focus on the present moment is to meditate. Have you ever walked into a meditation workshop and have your instructor to tell you to focus and not think or judge? I have tried it, but most of the time I can’t stay focused for more than 2 seconds before my mind start drifting and saying things to myself: ‘why is this room so hot?’, ‘what shall I wear for tonight’s dinner’, ‘what exactly is zen’, ‘atop thinking, you suppose to focus and meditate’ … our mind is constantly occupied and hence why we struggle to sleep at night, because my mind is filled with unnecessary thought. My goal is try to meditate either before I go to sleep or after I get up at 6am for my work – to train my mind how to being focus and being present.
- Be wholehearted. I do appreciate things people have done for me. But I want to broader it to the next level. There was this Ted Talk I watched on the Ted Talk, it was ‘the power of vulnerability’, the content is actually not like what the title sounds. It is actually wholehearted people often feel so contained and happy in their lives. Many people often shut their feelings because they don’t want to get hurt because of the pain, but at the same time they have shut their feeling for joys and happiness. It is impossible to shut one out and still letting the other one through. People who are wholehearted they give love unconditionally without expecting any returns. Because of their positive vibes and energy, just like the law of attrition mentioned in the book of ‘The Secret’ by Rhonda Byrne, they often live a very loving life. It’s hard to be forgiving and loving everything and everything knowing that some people might be hurt your feeling regardless and expect no return. A kid grow up in a wholehearted family most likely to achieve more in life than the ones who are more self-focused.
- Stop procrastinating. Just like most people, I procrastinate. I don’t say that I procrastinate a lot giving the high intensity of my job, but I tend to procrastinate on the big and tough tasks, and I often fill my days with smaller tasks that are lower on the priority list because those ones are easier to be done. I wrote a post on How to Stop Procrastinating a while back inspired by the book ‘Eat That Frog!’ by Brian Tracy, and this is something I need to polish on for the upcoming year.
- Be early, rather than on time. Given the busy schedule of my daily life, I’m not doing the best in this department. I feel like that I’m almost running behind with my schedule or cutting close to my appointment time. For this upcoming year, I’m going to try to allow myself with sufficient time for getting ready, preparation, commuting, etc. It is always handy to arrive somewhere early, in case you can’t find your way; to prepare or to brainstorm for an important meeting; also you will feel less stressed and more confident arriving to an important meeting or event early and prepared. Even if it is just a dinner date, you date will be appreciated if you show up early and feeling that they were important to you and you take everything very seriously.
Handing over to you! What are some of the goals you want to achieve or some of the personal qualities that you want improve for 2017? I hope you have aimed high for 2017 and wish you all have a spectacular year ahead. Life is too short, instead of draining yourself with miseries and abusing yourself with all the numbing activities so you think you could feel better, it’s time to step up, get out, inspire each other, and push each other up in the ladder! Go live your dreams and never give up on it! Sky is your limit!
(Photos by Cathie)
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