the f does February only have 29 days.
Working on BreakinWorld.com revamps this week, scope out the site and check the upgraded design! Adding a live portfolio viewer on the portfolio page and changing the Pix page with a live gallery viewer as well. Hoping to finish it all by end of week.
Also, just purchased Rhythm.ly – I’ve been working on a side web application that I’m hoping will catch some traction. It isn’t uploaded yet, but hope to wrap up a lot of the work by end of month. If this and JOMO Market start getting some attention after both of their full launches, I’ll be one happy person 🙂
I remember towards the end of high school and beginning of college I would frequently ask the folks around me, “What do you think is the meaning of life?”
Typical hippy college kid, right?
The answer I received 9 times out of 10?
“To have fun”
It never really sat with me well. While hiking one foot after another pressed against a steep ledge in northern Thailand, closer to Burma than Bangkok, I had a lot of time to think. Particularly about where I am halfway through my twenties (as scary as that sounds).
I guess the way I see time is as a stream that we all float down at our own pace, some quicker than others. Everyone encounters “blips” which are those anecdotal pieces of time – the rapids, rushes, and the clear waters which we remember; the events during an entire year which are memorable while the rest of the year simply fades away into the pages of our history. Our lives have a funny way of passing us by without saying hello, and we tend to only remember the moments which had some sort of significant empirical/emotional impact.
As I walked through the forest, passing through waterfalls and crossing rivers, it really got me thinking, is life really about having fun? Fun comes and goes, it’s a blip that provides solace in reminiscence. It’s necessary. But is that what everything really revolves around? It’s just a moment. It passes.
If that’s the case, what doesn’t pass? What stays with us forever? Memories are forever – sure. But I constantly find myself seeking more than just memories of good times. They’re necessary, but they’re not perfection. They’re a temporary escape before the plunge back to the current state.
And it hit me as I walked through the rice fields of the neighboring villages (did I mention Thailand is amazing?) with my local guide.
Have you ever seen impoverished children warm their feet against a running car’s exhaust pipe during winter? Have you seen a malnourished child smile? What about young children with bullet wounds? Or children that can’t run and play like you did as a kid due to lack of energy from malnutrition and lack of warm clothing?
What have you done to help them?
Any difference you’ve made in the life of an impoverished individual is eternal solace. It’s knowing that in this moment, in the present (as you read this and as I type this), your actions have changed someones life. It’s more than a memory to reflect on, it’s a recurring satisfaction that your existence has caused an unquestionable greater good. It’s more valuable than fun. It’s purpose. It’s finding yourself in the alleviation of the hurting of others. It’s beyond the suits in executive rooms discussing strategies on things that don’t really matter. It’s beyond hoarding money, adapting to your wealth, and thinking about how to get more.
“Perhaps like you I spend an extraordinary amount of time immersed in a world of consumerism, superficial encounters, and work that feels worthwhile yet I know I could easily be replaced by someone else who could do the same thing. This single incident seemed to redefine my whole life and send me in a whole new direction. Ten years and 126 girls later, saving at-risk children has now become my priority. It has also become my life’s greatest joy.” – Read the article here
After seeing 8 countries, war, relief work, nature, desert, corruption, poverty, and good times in the last 4 months, I’m truly understanding the purpose of meaningful work. Belief behind your actions. Everyone’s trying to make it. No one is as wealthy as they want to be. Many are suffering due to the whims of circumstance. We can either sit behind cubicle walls and develop strategies for improvement, or we can take it upon ourselves and use our hands to create the difference. I’m not saying join an NGO – as a matter of fact, I am increasingly getting the feeling NGO’s are unsustainable and incredibly inefficient in their operations (totally different story).
I’m saying find a cause, make it your purpose.
What better time to find your focus in life than the time where responsibilities are relatively minimal? If you’re blessed to be in your twenties, you still have the time to find your cause without too much sacrifice in responsibility. Get a job, lose a job, move to a new place, make new friends, have your heart broken, join new groups, do new things, be spontaneous. Before it’s too late. Learn about yourself to learn about your purpose. Youth is stamina. When you find your purpose, seemingly the puzzles in life slowly begin to piece themselves together. I’ve always known I wanted to work in poverty relief. I’m not quite there yet, but with every year I’m feeling the pieces slowly begin to join together.
Listen to your own self, life is too short to weather jobs, tasks, and other indefinite circumstances which are not focused on the development of your own specific purpose.
“Everyone has been made for some particular work, and the desire for that work has been put in every heart.”
– Jalaluddin Rumi