Anything you like, you can do.

Anything you like, you can do.

If you like something, that means you can do it. If you have an appreciation for something, that means you have a level of understanding of that thing.

Here is an example; let’s say you love wedding gowns and tuxedos. You just love them. You can’t get enough of looking at them and comparing them and helping your friends pick them out. This affinity you have for them, in of itself, gives you not just the capacity but also the tools to design wedding gowns and tuxedos.

“What?” you’re thinking. Just because I like something doesn’t mean I can do it. Just because I like to watch people dance, or play guitar, or design woodwork doesn’t mean I can ever actually do those things. I just have an appreciation for them, no skill!

That is where you’re wrong. You already have some of the most important skill related to pretty much anything, and that is the discerning ability of what is good, and what is bad. You can tell a well written song from a poorly written one, you can tell when someone is dancing well, and when they are messing up real bad. This means that if you begin to practice such a skill, you will be able to measure your own progress. You will be able to compare your knowledge to what you’re producing and say, yeah this wood pattern doesn’t really look right. That is skill! That is knowledge! That is ability!

If you like something, anything, the more you like it, the more likely you are able to do it.

So go out and do something. Pick up the hobby you’ve been afraid to start. And remember every time you make a mistake is a demonstration of the skill you already have, the ability to judge the art of whatever it is you’re doing. Take it as a blessing that you can see your mistakes! If you start doing something you know nothing about, you’ll never be able to understand what you’re doing wrong or why.

Go do it! Failure is success!

Leo

The importance of consistent motivation and inspiration

You know the feeling, that feeling of, I need to get my shit together. Or I need to do this positive thing; I need to make this change in my life. I know what I have to do now; I’m ready for greatness. It’s the feeling you take away from that great quote, or that awesome poem or movie, or song or talk with your friend. It doesn’t matter where it came from, that moment right there is the kind we read about, the moment of inspiration. You were just inspired and maybe even motivated to do something. If it’s making a change, or starting something new, you’re about to do something and it is probably a good thing. But that feeling can be fleeting…

 

I don’t think this feeling can be underrated. Sitting here at 4:58 am writing this I feel so inspired. I just watched a video on the Internet and it shook me to my core. Here is Neil deGrasse Tyson blowing minds as usual.

 

Neil deGrasse Tyson – We Stopped Dreaming

And to anyone who notices yes it is from front-page reddit.

 

This is the kind of video that makes you want to just get up and do something. To go out and achieve something. And when that feeling comes from somebody close to you? Boy it is even better! Because it is personal, and that person is going to watch you, and they will see you develop and do or not do what they hoped you would. And that kind of role model who is really there, you can feel in your mind every time you make a decision. Role models and inspirational materials should never be underrated. This is the kind of stuff that fuels people to greatness. It isn’t just lonely geniuses that solve the world’s problems and push humanity forward. It’s the collaborations of inspired and motivated individuals that move us toward greatness.

 

Don’t be afraid to find mentors, or people to look up to. Don’t be afraid to search for inspirational things. It doesn’t matter what kind. If it inspires you, if it motivates you to better yourself, then it is okay to view. In fact I would say view it more! A good friend of mine gained the motivation to study and learn both Korean and Japanese because of a singer/actor she adores, yet never met. I have another friend who has developed a marvelous artistic talent, just like his grandfather, who was always there to guide him.

 

One of my passions is time management. I remember that Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography inspired me to manage my time better. I need to reread that book because I’ve been slipping.

 

Never ever undervalue what inspires or motivates you. Just get more of it.

Really learning. When to buckle down, when to quit. Pt 2.

School is mostly just a load of crap. Most of it the kids don’t enjoy, most of it the teachers don’t enjoy, most of it doesn’t even do what it is supposed to. It’s just crap. And I can say that its often the same crap everywhere in the world (I’ve studied abroad quite a bit now). And as you saw in my previous post, lately its been getting me down. But I’ve been crafting, or perhaps recreating, a new approach and thought process that really has potential.

But first, let me tell you a follow up on that case study. I got a C. Not a C+ or a C-, just a regular normal C. Well guess what? Whatever! I’ve gotten a hundred A’s on papers way harder than this one and the instructions were just crap! And on top of that the paper was a waste of time anyway. Decision making in a now mediocre company from 13 years ago? Who gives a shit! Yeah of course I won’t do amazing research for this paper, nobody cares especially not me. Now if you actually gave me something interesting, or something that mattered, or something I could relate to? Well thats a whole other ball game.

Which brings me to my next point. People often say, you should study what you love! And this advice should NEVER EVER be tossed aside! Because the truth is, to paraphrase Tim Ferriss, when you work on your strengths the results you get are multiplied, but when you work with your weaknesses its just addition, slowly building.

I know this first hand because it doesn’t matter how much of a PASSION I develop for working on my weaknesses, I will never ever be as good at them as my strengths. Believe me I’ve tried.

You might be reading this thinking, my god Leo where are you going with this? How does any of this relate to the title of your post? Well I’m about to get into that right now.

Here are some new rules to try to live by.

1.) When you’re doing something that absolutely sucks. Do it as quickly as possible, and only as well as you need to. This might even mean skipping it altogether.

Now before you go around barely glancing over legal documents or slamming your car into others at parking lots let me quantify for you what makes something ‘absolutely suck.’ It has to have at least two of these three sucky traits.

-You’re not interested in it

-It won’t aid you in your goals

-You know a better way to do it

2.) Don’t feel guilty for doing things you like.

I don’t care if you’re addicted to shopping, playing videogames, smelling garbage, eating candy, following people (this might be a problem), or even just watching TV. Whatever you do. It is NOT a waste of time!

Surprise. Everyone who tells you its a stupid hobby, or a stupid way to spend time is… wrong! Because you are becoming an EXPERT in whatever it is you love to do! And you can put that expertise to use… Some more directly than others, but here is a catchall for the ones who are skeptical that their favorite pastime is somehow applicable to their life.

Blog about it! You’ll have to learn about the blogging processes, but go online! Youtube, wordpress, tumbler, twitter, whatever! It does NOT matter. You spend all day googling about your favorite stuff, you could be that search result! And with a little dedication you could make a living from it! And with a lot of dedication, you might just become to go to guy or gal for that specific niche!

So, I’m not going to waste my time any more. Or at least try not to. Its time to speed past the crap and buckle down for real learning!

Positive Leo!

Really learning. When to buckle down, when to quit. Pt 1.

This last week has been pretty tough for me. I’ve been flip flopping between two extremes. A few months ago I made (another) life changing decision. I wasn’t going to treat school like ‘whatever’ anymore. I was going to swallow my pride, I was going to sit down and shut up and learn.

And in the beginning it seemed like it was working, I was spending entire days just reading textbooks, I was doing my homework weeks if not months ahead of time. In class I was encyclopedic, I had already read the chapter and taken extensive notes even though I didn’t need to! I thought that if I kept this up, I should just keep taking courses and keep overloading and try to cram in as much knowledge as I can. Makes sense on paper right?

Well not exactly. It turns out that (well perhaps not surprisingly for many of you) this process ended up damaging me in some ways. I mean I literally was guilt tripping myself for even THINKING about playing videogames. (This in addition to guilt tripping myself for THINKING about candybars, not a good combination). I was in pretty bad distress. But I was still pushing through. But then something really bad happened, and really surprising for me.

I snapped. Sitting there staring at my ‘Principles of Management’ Case Study. I was trying to reconcile the instructions of the professor, with the instructions of the paper, with the instructions of the Case Study. Doing this paper a week ahead of schedule mind you! (I know a month or two months would be better, but I’m usually the day before kind of guy!) So here is a play-by-play of me snapping.

1. I get to my room, excited to get my paper out of the way (I honestly was!)

2. I sit down and begin to compare the notes of instructions I typed in class from the prof with the syllabus and the case study itself.

3. Okay so… I need an introduction and a body and a conclusion blah blah blah… Prof says, “Answer the whole question, and nothing but the question, not a word more or a word less.” Wait. What? Isn’t that kind of a contradiction?

4. Hmmm… what is the first question anyway? “What good decision making has led (Insert corporation) to development or otherwise?” Or otherwise. Or otherwise. Or otherwise. Otherwise implies regression.. regression isn’t a result of good decision making. THEREFORE THIS QUESTION IS ILLOGICAL. Or at the very least not something I can answer precisely with not a word more or a word less! And on top of that in the syllabus it says a ‘A’ grade on the case study is a paper in which the student doesn’t just demonstrate that they did research and understand it, but is able to make logical predictions about the future. The future? THIS CASE STUDY IS 13 YEARS OLD. Bad instructions, bad question, bad case study! Gaaaaaah (Me snapping)

Right so then I punched something and I think I hit myself or something. I was doing some pretty serious raging. Maybe to some readers that in itself is understandable, but honestly I haven’t been mad like that in years! It is amazing what a stressful scenario combined with ABSOLUTELY ILLOGICAL CRAP THAT IS TWENTY PERCENT OF MY GRADE can do to a guy.

It felt good to just truly conform (for once in my life) to the system, with the flashcards and the note taking and reading and reflection and blah blah. It felt good. But it wasn’t good. Maybe for someone else, but not me. Well all of this kind of led me to a new discovery… I was approaching my work incorrectly. I’ll talk about that discovery in my next post.

Windows Live Needs Tabs!

Dear Windows live. What the hell is your problem? No I don’t want to scroll through my hundreds of tabs and find where I have opened you before and close that tab just so I can reopen you! Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, and pretty much every other web related service I have ever used has never ever ever in all my life EVER said… “Uh yeah you already have this open and you’re not allowed to open it twice…”

Screw that!

Windows live, get your shit together, that is sooo annoying.

Anyone else have this problem? Also, anyone else only have windows live becasue their university makes them.. Sheesh.

 

Leo

How to beat hunger and be happier about it

Hunger sucks. I don’t think there is anything I hate more  than being hungry. It keeps me from working, enjoying myself and just overall is a bother. The worst thing is when you’re hungry and you shouldn’t be! Suddenly you’re eating a candy bar, an extra meal, some bread with peanut butter or whatever. And you shouldn’t be, you really really shouldn’t.

But what can you do right? I mean you’re hungry and it is keeping you from what you want to be doing, so you have to eat to get rid of that hunger right?

Wrong!

There are a variety of things you can do to get over your hunger, helping you to stay healthy and even lose weight.

Here are some of my suggestions;

1. Drink water.

This is my first suggestion because it is so easy and works almost every time. If you fill yourself with water you’ll be less hungry. I have no idea why this works, but it just does. If water bores you too much (it really shouldn’t) have some tea or put a little bit of fruit juice in it to make it better. DO NOT drink gatorade or soda! This is just as bad as having a candy bar!

2. Chew Gum.

Sometimes all you really want is something in your mouth. Er. To chew on. Er. Anyway, chewing gum has been known since forever to alleviate hunger, your body associates chewing with eating and doesn’t bother you about it anymore. Try to chew sugar free! And then you’ll be chewing guilt free!

3. Get over it!

Thats right. Suck it up and get over it. You might not know this but your body doesn’t actually  hate you. When you really feel hungry (and probably should really eat something), but for whatever reason can’t (waiting for a friend, for someone to finish cooking, etc). You should just stop thinking about it. Eventually your body will leave you alone. It will come to the conclusion of, well I guess you’re not going to eat so I might as well stop bothering you about it because it won’t make a difference! Er. At least… thats what my body says to me…

Hope this helps you in your quest to beat hunger and be healthier or lose weight!

Leo

Why I drink warm water and you should too.

Here is a little something I picked up while I was travelling in asia.

Drinking hot (or warm) water! Seems really weird to most westerners doesn’t it? I mean hell a lot of people have difficulty forcing themselves to drink water in the first place, let alone hot!

Well the truth is there are a number of real health benefits from drinking warm to hot water.

For just warm water, it is a lot easier on your body, and in general easier to drink. It doesn’t force your body to heat itself to make up for the coldness flushing in! In this way, water is much more easily absorbed by your body and less of a strain is put on your organs, especially your liver!

Now if the water is actually hot, not boiling hot or hot enough to burn of course! But about as hot as you would take say your tea or coffee, it can actually heat your body up, which causes you to perspire. Perspiring, especially when you’ve only been drinking water in the last few hours or so, is extremely good for the body. This is how you can rid yourself of nasty toxins and weird deposits in your nervous system. Not just a healthy practice, but after a bit you can really feel it!

Hot water, and the water vapor coming from it, can also help to clear up any nasal congestion you have. You probably already know this from having soup or tea when you’re sick.

All in all, drinking warm water can be a pretty good decision.

I do have one warning though, if you’re thinking of starting to drink HOT water, heat it up the same way you would for tea or coffee, because if you take it right from a water pipe it might bring some strange metals and minerals you don’t want from your pipes with it, making it a little dirty. But it is totally fine to drink warm water from the sink.

On an unscientific note.. warm water starts to taste better after a while! I don’t even really like cold water anymore! Although you should probably still drink cold water if you’re overheating from exercise or illness.

I hope somebody somewhere tries this out and reaps the benefits I have 🙂

Learning Foreign Alphabets!

Lets face it, learning a foreign language is not always easy. Especially when it is very different from our own. I know from my experience dabbling in different languages I often find myself struggling to remember letters and pronunciations from the beginning. When it isn’t written in roman letters It is especially hard!

But there is a really cool trick to memorizing the look and the pronunciation of the alphabet…

Songs!

Many people say to learn foreign languages the same way we learned our first one. Well the ABC’s for other languages is a must! And while sometimes they go over this in courses, it usually isn’t enough to truly memorize it. So I look for youtube videos! Putting them on repeat while doing your homework or studying in general can really help you get the pronunciation of a language down pat!

Here are two examples of some good alphabet videos I use! You can easily find your own for almost any language. Just keep clicking until you find a good one 🙂

Arabic (Technically this is a ‘Short vowels’ song, but any student of Arabic will realize how useful this is for a beginner! in fact they use this in real schools in MENA!) *Bonus term* M.E.N.A. Middle East and North Africa

And here is one for Japanese! (It might be annoying for some of you…. but if you really are interested in studying Japanese you better get used to stuff like this hahaha)

I often spend a lot of time learning about how to learn languages… if anyone reading this wants more tips and tricks about learning languages please message me and tell me what you want to know and if I don’t know about it I’ll find out for you and make a post just for you 🙂

Leo

Round Trip Tickets for One Way Flights? It’s not as it seems. A Warning.

Most people these days do a little bit of research before they purchase a flight ticket. I mean after all sometimes those flights can be connecting in 3 airports and take 20 hours longer than they should. Or even worse, cost 3 times more than they should!

Many people quickly find out the following… “Wait a minute… the roundtrip ticket is 500 dollars less expensive what the hell??” If you’re flying one way this can be really tempting. Why not just get the roundtrip ticket and ditch the return flight?

Well… It might not be that simple. Many airlines now have a ‘Throwaway Ticket Policy.’ They have caught on to travelers who have been finding ways to reduce their expenses. Now for sure if you don’t take the first flight but try to take the return you’re pretty screwed. They will simply cancel your return flight. Not a good thing.

But even if you try to be sneaky and just skip out on the return. When they see you as a no show they may try to collect on you. Once they are onto you they will start confiscating tickets, canceling other bookings and if they can’t get the money from you, they will try to collect on whoever youbooked with. Which means that companies like Cheaptickets and Orbitz will be billing you.

If you do decide to try to game the system, make sure you have a good story. Maybe even some photoshopped alternative tickets… 

But really though, if you try to game them, do your research first.

 

What the objective of EVERY blog post should be!

What is the secret to writing a great blog? How do you propel your blog from a blog to one of THE blogs?

I’ll tell you one thing, treating it like a diary or a list of your accomplishments isn’t going to do (Well, unless you’re already someone famous or successful, in which case thanks for reading!).

You need to have something that people want, and you need to deliver it to them in an attractive way!

Lets say you want to learn how to make a Cheesecake (sorry to people who don’t like this). I’m going to link to two possible posts you could read/view to learn how to make Chocolate Cheesecake, read both of them and be honest with yourself, which one do you like more?

http://www.ehow.com/how_10053_make-cheesecake.html

http://allfare.wordpress.com/2011/09/24/my-first-cheesecake/

The first link is an easily found article with millions of views. It’s exactly what you might have searched for. A recipe for cheesecake and instructions. Thats it. Now you’re done.

The second link is to a blog I found about cooking. The authors post isn’t just the bare instructions on how to make a Cheesecake. It’s a unique recipe, from a unique source. It has personal information and personal pictures. It tells a story! She even added extra hints and warnings for executing the recipe, an interesting and useful post.

Maybe you don’t care about cooking. Maybe you’re thinking, Uh Leo if all I care about is the recipe why would I read this lady’s post? But if you think that the blog readers of the world don’t care about story and personal content you’re a fool!

I don’t care what you’re writing or blogging about. Don’t write a text book or a manual, you have to tell a story, and if you can’t think of any good characters to feature in it, look in the mirror.

Besides, it’s so much more fun this way 🙂

 

 

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