Happy 2023 to you, wherever you may be. I’m kind of like 6 weeks behind but yep that’s just me, still struggling to come to the realisation that it is already a brand new year – filled with.. i don’t know but I hope it’s nice. For 2023, there are not going to be any significant changes in my life this year (or at least nothing is planned as such) but no one can predict the future so let’s see.
On a happier note, I can’t believe that we (in Singapore) are finally going mask-free after 34 months. If I didn’t recall wrongly, masks became compulsory in April 2020 and our restrictions were reduced bit by bit and finally, we no longer have to wear masks when taking public transport starting from 13th Feb! Many people are making a joke that it is before Valentine’s day so people can put lipstick and makeup on without it being smudged by mask but it doesn’t matter for me anyway. The only place where you will still have to mask up is at healthcare facilities which I think is a pretty logical restriction. Nevertheless, I hope that people who are feeling unwell continue to mask up and not spread the germs to others like how they do it in Japan.
Despite me ‘missing’ my January post, I’m actually not busy with life. In fact, I’ve been spending a lot of time at home (also due to the rainy and cold weather the whole month of Jan), watching a lot of dramas and variety shows which utilise the same ‘computer time’ I have every night. There’s a lot of distraction when I get online and ‘remembering to blog’ does not seem to be a top priority in my life anymore. Many people have moved on to short-form content like TikTok to share updates on their lives but I guess a part of me still prefers the old-school way of typing things out. In addition, my post-covid travels haven’t been too interesting, thus I kind of stopped travel blogging because I post everything on Instagram stories anyway plus, there isn’t much demand for such content online from individual writers anymore. I’ve witnessed my stats drop across the year and somehow have not found the motivation to be more passionate about a sunsetting content media. Not sure how long I’ll keep up with blogging but there will be a day when I totally lose the motivation to write anymore. It will come, just a matter of when =p
I’ve just finished reading Michelle Obama’s book on ‘The light we Carry’ and while not all chapters were relevant to me, there was one portion that really stood out to me. It was about her sharing how she was unhappy with a math teacher in school, and her mum made a comment “You don’t have to like your teacher and she doesn’t have to like you. But she’s got math in her head that you need in yours, so maybe you should just go to school and get the math. You can come home to be liked. We will always like you here.” It felt really deep and meaningful to me and I hope that many parents can provide such kind motivation for their kids. Recently, I’ve also been coming to terms with the fact that as a parent, you will always want to provide the best for your kids, even at the expense of yourself. My mum usually gives the best parts (of the food) to her children and sometimes while I do reject her kind gestures, she may insist and I’ll just eat it anyway. It took ‘growing older’ for me to realise that ‘sacrificing’ is a kind of love and ‘giving’ can bring a kind of happiness too. So sometimes as a ‘receiver’ of kindness, it might just make everyone happy to just accept and move on. Anyway, at times like this I’m really thankful that I’m nowhere close to being a parent or a mother. I don’t think I have the mental and physical capacity to make those sacrifices for anyone. So if you’re reading this and you’re a parent, I’m really proud and have full respect for what you’ve done so far because it’s really not easy. When times get tough, do remember to give yourself a pat on your back because you’ve survived well 😉
There’s another part in her book which talks about how we should all be ‘comfortably afraid’ and this was in fact one of the learnings I had in my life too. There was a point in my life when I was really stressed about work and when I narrowed it down to why I had anxiety, I realise that one of the main reasons was that I was too afraid to fail. As I haven’t experienced any big failures in life before, the thought of failing (and tarnishing my ‘perfect’ record) was too big to lose and I was adding additional pressure and stress on myself. Looking back, I should have better managed my fear and also convinced myself that even if I did face my first ‘failure’, it wasn’t going to be too bad and it is more important to focus on the recovery than to dwell on the fear of failure. Hope that you will get to learn how to be ‘comfortably afraid’ earlier in life and not spend too much time on the ‘what-ifs’ but come out with a plan that even if it fails, you know what to do and recover from it.
Discovering ‘reading’ and ‘audiobooks’ in recent years is really a great help in my life. Having the time to indulge in such hobbies is also a luxury that I have too. IT’s a pity to know that lesser and lesser people read these days as their attention span is heavily monopolised by our mobile phones and all those flashy apps. I hope this is a hobby that I can see myself continue doing when I’m a lot older in life.
I suddenly had an idea of a random goal that I think I might want to achieve in 2023 – which is to declutter. It doesn’t mean that I’m decluttering only physical items. I’m looking to see how I am able to declutter the intangible things as well, together with my phone memory space and perhaps random emotions, people, and thoughts in life which I haven’t exactly tried my best to get rid of. For the first time since I had spotify, I actually went to my ‘saved songs’ playlist and removed songs which no longer struck a chord with me. In a single setting, I got rid of about 50 songs (about 7% of my entire list) which I don’t think I’ll enjoy listening to anymore. No idea why I didn’t bother to remove these songs that I’ll always skip anyway from my playlist ages ago. In addition, I badly need to declutter my closet cause there are 70% of clothes I don’t think I’ll ever wear again but.. I don’t know why I’m finding it so difficult to get rid of/donate it.
That’s all I have for today. Thanks for reading and I hope you’re having a great day!