Before I get “blogosphere” throwing bricks at me, I’d like to explain in a few words the reason I’ve been so MIA. I’ve been literally racking my brain cells and use it fully to focus on exams and I’m so happy to finally say that I’m no longer a high-schooler! The struggle is finally over and I have a few months of continuous blogging (hopefully) with time in my hands. So, i decided to do a post that sort of relates to high school or any other phases in life which involves making tough decisions.
The moment you get up in the morning, you are faced with two options. To keep dreaming, or to wake up and make that dream a reality. The lazy ones with no purpose in life will fall back into a deep slumber while others with purpose enthusiastically start their day. That itself, is a tough decisions. Our life constantly revolves around making those decisions. The outcome is dependent on that decision we make.
Is it important to make the right decision?
For some, decision making is a skill. For others, its a struggle. However, making a choice doesn’t always have to be the right one. It does shape our future, yet the future is not a constant. It can change, it can be “fixed” (Scandal reference right there!). I for one make the worst decisions. I once decided to bring my phone to the toilet and guess what happened to it. We all make bad decisions, It is ALL RIGHT. Its not the end of the world! (yet!) You empower that decision. A few things needs to be considered to make wise decisions. These include;
Never Be Overwhelmed
Under stressful situations, Its a human tendency to make bad decisions. Always remember to see the picture clearly and decide according to it. Take the time needed, haste leads to waste.
Re Evaluate (3T’s: Think Things Through)
Always consider the possible outcomes that is an effect of the options that you are faced with. E.g. Should i eat a donut or frozen strawberries when craving for a sweet tooth. Although donut tastes 3456798388x better, strawberries are 456893930028727x healthier. Every decision you make has a consequence followed by it. Once we learn to evaluate our decisions, thats when all other considerations fall into place. If it gets complicated write down the pros and cons possibly with the help of a venn diagram
So, how do you know which decision to make?
This is one of the hard parts because instead of thinking whats good for us we tend to choose what we favour more. What we want is always what we need. Yet, what we need isn’t always what we want. So instead of focusing on what we want, ask yourself “What is the best for you?”
“Trust your heart if the seas catch fire, live by love though the stars walk backward.”
― E.E. Cummings
At the end of the day, we all want to be winners in life. We want to know that we have made the right decisions. Success is a matter of perception, just as happiness is. They are both very subjective. Keep in mind that no decision is purely good, or bad. No matter what decision you make in the end, believe that it is your best choice. Choose to be positive and confident about it.
“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.”- Paula Coelho
Listen to your heart. Be bold. Set a goal. Take a chance.
Congratulations Mr. Jokowi (short for; Joko Widodo) for being officially elected as Indonesia’s 7th president, no one else rightfully deserves this honour apart from you. I wanted to do a quick post about this major event that happened today as the 53-year old Javanese originated Indonesian hero was sworn in this morning. A collaboration party was held in celebration of the newly inaugurated President where 250 million cheered for victory along with Muhammad Jusuf Kalla as the newly sworn in Vice President.
- Born in 1961 in city of Solo, the son of a wood-seller
- Began political career with the PDI-P party when he was elected mayor of Solo in 2005
- Elected for second term in 2010 with more than 90% of the vote
- Elected governor of Jakarta in 2012
- Backer of technology who promises to implement “e-governance” to help cut bureaucratic corruption
His awards and honours include the following:
2008: Jokowi was listed by Tempo as one of the ‘Top 10 Indonesian Mayors of 2008’.
2011: He was awarded the Bintang Jasa Utama by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono.
2012: Jokowi received 3rd place of the 2012 World Mayor Prize for “transforming a crime-ridden city into a regional center for art and culture and an attractive city to tourists. He was listed as one of “The Leading Global Thinkers of 2013” in Foreign Policy. In February 2013 he was nominated as the global mayor of the month by the The City Mayors Foundation based in London.
2014: Jokowi was listed by Fortune as one of the ‘The World’s 50 Greatest Leaders’
2014: Jokowi on the cover of Time on October 18, 2014.
What Made Joko Widodo “Jokowi”
Besides the fact that he had no early ties to military nor political background, Jokowi’s approach involves reaching out to people by adapting the practice (known as blusukan) of regularly arranging well-publicized visits to local communities, often in quite poor areas, across Jakarta. During these visits, he wears simple informal clothes and makes a point of spending time in markets or walking along narrow Jakarta lanes (gangs) to chat to people about problems like the price of food, housing difficulties, local flooding, and transport. He uses his amiability and powers of persuasion to improve the Indonesian way of life. He even started developing a few programmes such as; Health Care, Educational, Public Transportation (Jakarta Monorail).
Jokowi and his former vice governor, Basuki, publicized their monthly salary and the provincial budget to the public to prevent political corruption. They also initiated programs that are aimed towards transparency, such as online tax, e-budgeting, e-purchasing, and cash management system. His most valued achievements till today include revamping street vendors who were causing horrendous traffic jam by directing the chaotic agglomeration to a new building. The vendors in these markets are not charged for rent, they are only asked to pay for maintenance, electricity, and water cost. In 2013, Joko Widodo also initiated dredging and reservoir projects in order to reduce flood problems.
Indonesia’s economic development of good financial management is where Jokowi has a chance of making a difference. What Jokowi really brings to the marketplace is not so much specific policies, but transparency and certainty in government, and neither of those two things have been a feature of Indonesia financial and monetary administration.
Rather than specific policies, it’s his approaches to policy that will benefit Indonesia the most and makes it more likely to achieve its potential as a reasonably significant regional economic power, if not a global one. In that context, it will do better than it’s done in the past, where that potential has often been stymied by those inefficiencies.
Not “Good” but “Brilliant”
A few criticisms involving Jokowi has been the fact that he is not accustomed to public speaking and is considered as a flaw to a few oppositions. What they consider a hamartia, Jokowi’s supporters consider strength as it makes him a relatable leader where people can easily interact with no inhibitions. Even so, the speech he delivered at the inauguration ceremony today morning proved them wrong and amazed millions. Jokowi remains as a true leader and a national hero for all of us.
Inauguration Speech (20th October 2014)
“To the honourable world leaders around the world and all the attendees and invitees here today and, of course, to my fellow Indonesians. Just now vice-president Kalla … and I have said our oath with a deep and meaningful oath, promising that we will work hard for our country, Indonesia, and is the time when we join our heart and our hand and this is a time where we have to overcome the next challenge. Which is to build Indonesia to become a country that has political independence, economic independence and rich in culture. I’m sure that we can overcome this challenge together with all of us by working hard. Unity and working hard is something that is very important for us and we will never be able to become one if we keep being divided. The cabinet that I lead will ensure that everyone in the world will feel the service of this Government. And I invite and ask everyone to work hard and follow their responsibility and I am sure that if every single agencies and bodies in Indonesia works hard and carry on their mandate, to all the fishermen, to all the farmers, to all the meat ball vendor, to the driver, to the teacher, to the police, to the businessman and to all the professional community, I ask for all of you to work hard, work hard together. Because this a historical moment for all of us, to move together, to work and work and work.
Ladies and gentlemen, we would like to be known as a nation with integrity with respect, a nation full of creativity, a nation of creativity that can contribute something to the global world. I would also like to see that the sea and the ocean are the future of Indonesia. For too long we have had our backs on to our sea and on to the ocean. And this is the time for us to have victory and glory days in the sea, just like our ancestors did. To all my fellow Indonesians, working to develop our country we need your help. It will just be the responsibility of the president and vice-president of Indonesia, and that’s why I am sure with hard work and working together we can protect our nation by developing the public’s welfare and increasing education. That is based on peace and justice. National justice. To my fellow Indonesians, on behalf of the Indonesian government I would like to say thank you to all the world leaders from my neighbouring countries, and Indonesia as the third-largest country with the biggest Muslim population in the world, as an archipelago and as the biggest nation in South East Asia, we will continue in our positive foreign politics. In this location, on behalf of myself and the vice-president Jusuf Kalla, I would like to say thank you and I would like to say my biggest thank you and praise for Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Professor Yudhoyono … in their leadership of the country in the past five years, ladies and gentlemen, to end this speech I would like to ask every single one of you to remember one thing that was said by the first president of Indonesia to build Indonesia to become a strong and big country, a peaceful country, we need to have the spirit of a … brave, soldier of the sea. I would like all of us to come aboard the ship of Indonesia and sail towards the future by overcoming the storm and the wave of the ocean. That is the future, by uniting our power. And I would stand under the people’s mandate and the constitution, I hope that God almighty give us his blessings. With the blessings of God, thank you very much. Freedom!”
And there you have it, Our new Indonesian president and Vice president; Jokowi-JK! I truly hope as an Indonesian that Indonesia continues to prosper and develop. Selamat Bekerja dan Semoga Berhasil! (Congratulations and Good luck). Merdeka Indonesia Raya! (Long-live Indonesia)
Sorry If this post ended up being too long, I guess i got a little carried away. As usual, please leave suggestions and feedback down below along with requests for future posts. Have a great day! x
With exams around the corner, i dedicate this post to those currently under stress (like myself) struggling on preparation techniques. So we can all just go through this impossibly tough time together, Who’s with me? No one? Ok.
The most important thing that people seem to neglect before appearing for an exam is mental strength. Believe me, when i say the fear is all “In your Head”. Once you appear for it, when the exam paper is right in front of you all that fear and nervousness evaporates, because your mind builds self confidence slowly till the moment when you finally submit the paper. You need to make sure you relax so your mind is actively calm and can function at an optimum level. If you’re too worried or stressed before you take an exam, chances of recalling previous knowledge are slim to none. At the same time, overconfidence is probably not the best mode since you’ll probably “blank out”. Have you ever been in an exam and literally have no clue what its all about? Well, these reasons are probably why. So, here are a few suggestions to consider before you appear for an exam.
- Make Sure You Have The Complete Syllabus
Nothing is worst then having incomplete notes before appearing for an exam. So, be sure to know the subjects and topics you are required to learn. Make sure you have all your notes completed and if it is incomplete, its time hit google. Once you have everything organised and ready, you will have to make sure they’re arranged in an order that makes sense to you. Learn one subject at a time; draw correlations within topics of that subject. This way, you will be able to remember alternatives, even if you don’t recall the original. For e.g. In Physics, The formula for Gravitational field strength is similar to Electric Field Strength. That way, if i don’t recall the other, it won’t result in a disaster.
- Learn to Love the Subject
Try to study the subjects you dislike or are unable to do most of the time. Try doodling with hard topics with the help of; mind maps, collages, scribbles or pictures if it helps you comprehend better. If its boring, make it look artistic for it to capture your attention. Add fun colours and read it a million times and you’ll be able to remember it in even in your sleep. If it takes time to memorise it, put it on a mirror or a wall you look at everyday. I promise you, It works!
- Say NO to long hours
Cramming everything at a time will make you lose interest. Organise your study schedule and make sure you don’t sit and study for too long! Take at least 20 minutes but not more than an hour at once. Take 5-10 minute breaks in between. Don’t forget to test your knowledge to determine your level of understanding.
- Say YES to exercise
Many people seem to avoid exercising during preparations to conserve energy. However recent research shows that, doing light exercise such as a 20-minute jog can improve your memory. Meditational exercises such as; Yoga increases energy level, and reduces the effects of stress. This is preferably done in the outdoors, to get some fresh air for mental relaxation.
- Healthy Eating Habits
It is recommended to students to consume a high-carbohydrate, high-fiber and slow digesting foods such as; oatmeal before appearing for an exam. What you consume a week before, plays a huge role. Avoid foods that contain high-fat, low carbohydrate heavy cheese, eggs and cream. Instead, go for a balanced diet including fruits and vegetables. When studying, your brain takes up a lot of glucose. In between breaks, opt for healthy snacking ideas like the ones below.
- Alter Study Spots
Don’t just stay at home depressed and alone. According to the New York Times, simply alternating the room where a person studies improves retention. In an experiment, psychologists found that college students who studied a list of 40 vocabulary words in two different rooms one windowless and cluttered, the other modern, with a view on a courtyard did far better on a test than students who studied the words twice, in the same room. Why? Supposedly, the brain makes subtle associations between what it is studying and the background sensations it has at the time. Try alternating your study spots between the library, a study room, and a quiet coffee house.
- Manage Your Time
“Time is what we want most but what we use worst” – William Penn
Always make a point to use your time wisely. Never put off anything till the last minute, that retains your ability to process information. Think of it as eating a bagful of marshmallows- there will be a point where you will not be able to swallow any more. In the same way, the brain finds it hard to process so much information at once. Make a balanced study plan.
- Avoid Pulling an All-Nighter
Compared to all students, All-Nighters impair reasoning and memory for four days. As a result of that, your grades will be affected. That’s not all, you would then be forced to wake up earlier then expected, which compromises sleep (check out my previous post for more details!). Sleeping late the night before an exam interferes with rapid eye movement which affects memory.
- Minimise Distractions
Stay focused! Even if you’re tempted to check your social media, text or tweet a friend. This will help you understand things quicker and uninhibited. You’re more likely to retain more information without gadgets distracting your concentration.
- Reflect, Refresh and Review
If you’re still finding some things hard to learn, write them down on flash cards or coloured cards and review it continuously before appearing for the exam.
I hope these suggestions were helpful to those needing motivation and assurance on preparing for exams. At the end, its knowing that you tried your best despite the results. “Its all about the journey as much as the outcome” Enjoy learning new things as the famous Mark Twain said:
“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
PS: Thank you for taking the time to read this post! Please do not hesitate to leave more of those suggestions (negative/positive) to improve this blog. Future blog post requests are always appreciated. Have an enjoyable day! x
“I love waking up in the morning”- said no one ever. Well at least, no one who has to get up at 5:30 AM for school. The sound of that awfully noisy alarm taunting you to get up and meet the day’s demands is truly a perpetual struggle, I must admit. However, ever since I’ve started developing some sort of routine on my “Sleeping Schedule” It has been comparatively easier. Although, I wouldn’t go as far as calling myself a “morning person” because I still consider myself a “Sleepoholic”
For anyone else struggling,
Here are 10 things to make waking up in the morning easier:
1) Know the Purpose
Why do you need to wake up in the morning? What becomes your goal and motivation? Don’t just get up because you have to. Most of the time when you’re supposed to set off that alarm, you press the snooze button because you let yourself succumb to that urge. Having a purpose will not only help you get up, but also begin the day with dreams you stored. Accountability is as effective as an alarm clock.
2) Brew That Coffee
Like every process, waking up needs time. Don’t just jump out of the bed in haste after realising you’re late because of a few minutes of extra sleep. Set the clock a minimum of an hour earlier. Brew coffee, relax, stretch, read the paper, take a few minutes for yourself to get used to “reality”
3) Set Your Body Clock
Never compromise the amount of sleep your body is accustomed to, especially if you have to get up in the morning. Know how much sleep you need and adjust your sleeping patterns accordingly. With that being said, this change is not instantaneous. It is going to take major adjustments affecting our daily activities, but the outcome is so worth it! One way to figure out what might work best for you is to set a consistent bedtime that starts about 8 hours before your alarm is going to go off.
4) Shut Down
To get up on time, you must sleep early. Wind up before bed time because spending too much time on gadgets before bed, may not lead to a restful sleep. Be sure to turn everything off!
5) Expose Yourself to Light
Make sure your bedroom is exposed to sunrise or bright lights. This helps your body clock accept your wake up time. This will help make your day brighter by embracing the new day with good mood.
6) Hard To Reach “Snooze Button”
It is always a tendency to postpone the time to wake up, so create an obstacle to force you out of the bed. If the alarm is placed next to your bed, place it elsewhere.
7) Maintain Sleep During Weekend
Compensating sleep on the weekends feeds into sleepiness for the following week and interrupts the set body clock. Stick to your accustomed bed time even on your weekends to maintain regularity.
8) Drink Plenty of Water
Be sure to gulp down glasses of water before you go to bed and immediately after you wake up. This will not only rehydrate and rejuvenate your senses, it’ll also compel you to get up and go to the toilet.
9) Make Your Mornings Motivational
Part of the struggle to wake up in the morning is when you’re alarmed with stress and pressure of having so much to do. Instead of stressing out, think about the good things that await you that day. Dwell on thoughts that puts a smile on your face.
10) Remember to Pray
Always pray before going to bed to Thank God for his constant protection throughout the day and every morning after getting up, to seek blessings to start a new day with happiness and success in whatever you do.
“Father, unto thee I pray,
Thou hast guarded me all day;
Safe I am while in thy sight,
Safely let me sleep tonight.
Bless my friends, the whole world bless;
Help me to learn helpfulness;
Keep me every in thy sight;
So to all I say good night.”
Following a routine like this does take time and adjustment and dedication. Don’t expect immediate results or instant perfection, It’s a setup for failure. Instead, improvise and alter as you make this important lifestyle change. Good Luck and I sincerely hope it helped!
PS: So Incredibly grateful for those feedbacks and encouragement 🙂 Please do not hesitate to leave more of those suggestions (negative/positive) to improve this blog. Future blog post requests are always appreciated. Good Day!