Saturday, May 14, 2016

Twenty Something Travel to [Paris] (Eiffel Tower)

Like I have mentioned in my blog post about travelling in Paris here, Eiffel Tower totally deserves a separate blog post. So here it is!

Paris travelers, do not forget to purchase a ticket to head to the viewing deck of Eiffel Tower when you are there! For students, you can enjoy discount by flashing your student card at the ticket counter. Do note that you can opt to walk the stairs to the top or take the elevator up, the latter will be slightly more expensive than the former. If you are in heels or don't feel strong enough to take the stairs up, go for the elevator instead! There are a few levels for you to explore when you reach the top of the Eiffel Tower. My mum and I stayed for almost 3 hours there because we were busy enjoying the magical view and taking pictures! (not even exaggerating here)

We decided to get a bouquet of fresh flowers to use it as a prop for our photos on the way there.

The flower shop where we bought our roses

The florist who created the bouquet for us

Pose 1

Pose 2

Pose 3

Pose 4

The majestic Eiffel Tower
Eating bread while queuing 
Yay! Got our tickets finally!

View 1

View 2

View 3

The spine-tingling transparent flooring (I wasn't even scared)

View 4

View 5 (Spot the shadow of the Eiffel Tower)

View 6 (Spot Arc de Triomphe)

View 7

View 8

There is a stall where you can queue to buy champagne to complement that breathtaking view. 

Don't ask me how did we end up spending 3 hours there. I mean these are just 3% of the pictures we took after some intense filtering work. But we really had lots of fun taking pictures and admiring the impressive view up there!
With my lovely mum

I hope you enjoyed reading this blog post as much as we enjoyed our time there! Till next time :)

Monday, May 2, 2016

About Life and Suicide

I am very appreciative of what I have now. Life is not perfect, this is absolutely true. You cannot always have what you want. You may seem fine from the outset, but later in your life, there are bound to be problems and obstacles that may stop you from moving forward. You may feel that it is the end of the world, you may feel that you are never going to climb back up after you fell, you may even feel that it is the world against you. But that is not true. 

The greatest thing about being a human is learning how to live life properly. That means you learn how to live life happily, truthfully, kindly, sincerely and fully. The beauty of being a human is you possess the ability to talk, eat, drink, walk, sleep, learn, travel, exercise, think, analyse etc. There is nothing in this world that resembles what a human can do. 

Look around you, you have your family, friends, and sometimes, a soulmate. But even if you don't have any of them, so what? You still have that person in the mirror. Yes, yourself. If external factors are unfavourable, and you really can't do anything about it, then work from within. Learn how to stay calm, learn how to relax, learn how to pick yourself up from failure, learn how to change your perspective, to be happy. 

I was told that people who dare to commit suicide and have successfully done so have one thing in common: they feel that whatever they are going through now is the end of the world. They can't see any light at the end of the tunnel. They are gravely in pain due to what life has put them through. They find no meaning to live anymore. This is the end. For them, it is easier to kill themselves than to wake up in the morning and face this terrible reality over and over again. Death is painful but it is just a one time thing. Do it and it will relieve pain for the rest their lives. 

But commit suicide so that you can escape from all these problems? Think twice. 

Let's just say one day, a very successful businessman made a wrong choice and invested in something that he shouldn't have. He later became bankrupt. The company he founded collapsed. His wife left him with the kids. He is left with nothing. If you are him, what will you do? 

Let's just say one day, a law student lost his scholarship because he did not meet the minimum GPA to qualify for it. He then failed his degree, and there goes his dream to be a lawyer. His soulmate for 10 years left him after that. If you are him, what will you do?

These hypothetical scenarios sound quite bad, aren't they?

One can live in sorrow and decide to end his life. One can choose to do pick himself up again and do something more meaningful, for instance, start all over again and find a job in a different field. The thing is there is no one answer to those questions, that's because there are simply way too many options in life. Point is: nothing is the end of the world other than end of the world itself. It is all about perspective. 

Suicide among youngsters nowadays is getting more common. It may be because of the competitive school and working environment, parents' expectations or peer pressure. Whatever it is, the problem arises because people tend to tie their expectations to happiness. And when the outcome falls far from the expectation, they grieve. But when the outcome turns out a hundred times worse than the expectation, they lose hope and they rather kill themselves than to live with this allegedly 'terrible horrible and miserable' outcome. 

Learn how to:

Change the way you treat your life. 

That means instead of tying your expectations to happiness, tie your happiness to your surroundings. Appreciate what you have, appreciate that you are living in this beautiful world, appreciate the people around you, appreciate...yourself. Even if the outcome is a thousand times worse than your expectation, learn to learn from it. Take it as a lesson, no matter how painful it is, and move on. Tell yourself, so what if I fail? There are plenty of options available for you to pick and choose. Your happiness should not be based on 'how successful you are' but it should be based on 'how appreciative you are' about the things/people around you, and of course, yourself. If you are happy, I am pretty sure a satisfying life will follow. To change the way you treat your life is not easy, it comes with constantly reminding yourself about being appreciative. 

Do things that will make you happy when you are sad.

That means go for a swim, talk to your best friend, walk your puppy, watch a movie, play the piano, go for a cycling trip, travel overseas, watch youtube, eat an ice-cream etc. While doing these things, reflect about your attitude towards life. It is not just about being successful and being able to be the best in school or at work, it is something more than that. It is about how you feel when you live. And being successful is just one of the billions way to be happy. Sad enough, happiness that derives from being successful is also very short as compared to doing what will really make you happy. I mean how many exams are there in one semester? Say 2 exams, and you did very well, you are happy. But for how long? 3 months? Then say if you did badly in your subsequent exam, then what? Sad again? Point is: don't let external factors dictate your happiness. Happiness should come from within. It is a skill/knowledge to be able to be happy constantly in your life. Try to work on it, and you will see the beauty about living. 

Don't push yourself too hard. Even if you are not extraordinarily smart or good at something, so what? 

Being able to manage your expectations through identifying and admitting your weaknesses is also one key point towards living a happy and satisfying life. Not everyone is born to run like Usain Bolt, not everyone is born to lead like Obama, not everyone is born to dance like Michael Jackson. Find your strengths, work on them. Identify your weaknesses, and accept them. Yes, you can always believe in 'nothing is impossible' and argue that one is not supposed to accept his weaknesses. But many people fail to realise that there is a caveat to that phrase: nothing is impossible only if you can stay positive throughout failures. If you can't, then nothing is possible. Focus on your strengths, work on them, and you will realise they will lead you to somewhere you never expect. 

Being able to live happily is the second luckiest thing in the world. 

Being able to live is the first. 

p/s: This post is inspired by a recent event.