Today’s world is full of distractions with news of wars, disputes, disasters and incidents on a daily basis. With the ubiquitous internet, it is almost impossible to escape these bad news because they sell and human beings have a desire to keep themselves safe.
But from time immemorial, these wars, disputes, disasters, accidents, incidents have happened continuously and they will never end. Meanwhile, one can be inadvertently swept up and enveloped by these news and even be paralyzed into inaction. I have met people who thinks that the safest place is the home and continue to build a barrier between themselves and the outside world.
Life is meant to be lived forward and reviewed backwards with relish. You might have heard from some people who always lament, “If only I had……..”, “I wished that I had……..”, “I regret not doing……….” Well, let not these words be spouted from your lips ever.
The biggest room in the world is the room for self improvement — — — Helmut Schmidt
Our glorious life and that means the one and only life you and I have right now. We should exalt and extol this one chance that you have been given by providence to make it good. For yourself and as an inspiration to others.
Many times, whenever I wanted to do something that is on my bucket list or even just to embark on a personal project , I am not short of naysayers. “Oh, we are passed that age by now”, “I think that is not possible to achieve in this lifetime”, “ It is dangerous…”
Everything we do have risks. A failure is just a slap in the ego, nothing else. It is evidence that your method do not work, so try another way. Age is only a number. Today’s internet videos have shown the possibilities achieved by people older than you and that is due to determination, courage and a positive mindset. Behind the success is sweat and tears. To “It is dangerous”, I say that life is unpredictable anyway. If you do your research, obey golden rules and take calculated risks, you can achieve and enjoy your journey.
The first negative comment I received was when I was nineteen and about to select my University course. I was told by an overseas professor that dentistry has no future. Fortunately, I did not take that to heart. I believed that there is always a room for good dentists and I have to earn that trust by keeping up to date, practicing carefully and really loving this career.
36 years on, I am still in love with dentistry and am glad that I have stuck to it even though some of my friends may have switched careers or have quit. To each his own. We all have our reasons but if you put your heart into your career and move along with the changes, you will love it. Dentistry is exciting and the image of this profession have greatly improved with the advent of digital technology and advances in dental science and techniques.
For that matter, every field is advancing with such incredible speed in this digital age. Even if one is retired and no longer needs to compete in the corporate world, continuing to better oneself in many ways gives one so much more power and energy to counter the negativity around us.
What can you do?
1 Read more– Reading holds the key to enlightenment and wisdom. Select books on success stories, personal development, skills and crafts of your interests and any materials that would give you ideas to better your life. Knowledge is power. It now depends on you to put them into action to bring more progress. Sometimes you surprise yourself with new found talents.
2 Inculcate a good habit and stick to it. A chinese saying has it that it takes three days to learn a bad habit but three years to build a good one. A good habit like exercise, studying, eating healthily for example requires persistence. It is the prerequisite to attain what you set out to achieve.
To achieve this, you need to set a routine to work at it, find your inspiration to motivate yourself consistently and believe in yourself.
3 Stay positive with a ‘can do’ attitude. In all situations, look for the good. It is a matter of losing something and gaining another thing. Before embarking on a project, it may look insurmountable. Look for role models who have done it . Even if you do not attain the full success, trying and modelling after those who have succeeded will get you midway and you just have to work harder from there.
4 Select your friends. The old adage, ‘Birds of a feather, flock together’ may be tired but rings true. If you want to know what a person is like, check out their friends. It also depends on who is the one who is most dominant and setting the behavior. In the learning of speaking Japanese for example, the obvious way to expedite it is to have some Japanese friends who are willing to converse with you. If you like a certain strength in a friend, you could only acquire it by hanging around him or her more and finding out how.
5 Be a mentor and a teacher. I believe in having mentors whether they are older or younger than me. As long as they are skilled, knowledgeable and kind in what they do, it is wise to request of their help to achieve what you want to improve in. Thus far, I have improved in my flute playing, scuba diving, skiing, the practice of advanced dentistry in particular, implants through friends who turned kind mentors who are dedicated and generous in imparting their knowledge to me. I in turn reinforce my own learning by sharing them with those who are interested in what I do too.
Paulo Coelho said, “ When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.” This is the essence of living. Improve yourself and you will always be a contributor to the welfare of others. This certainly would make your life more fulfilled and happy.