I Started Directing My Mind

Sunday Beam #

3

December 8, 2020

Hey everyone,

I can finally feel that Christmas is approaching because in Hong Kong, where I'm currently based, we're finally getting a bit of chill. It is nice to be able to get hot and cold seasons, and it reminds me of how lucky I am growing up in this city.

I'm writing more and more these days as I find it a rewarding process to learn about myself. When I put thoughts into words, I get to internalize and process them first. The sense of using my brain this way surprises me, and it is because I was so comfortable in execution (aka non-thinking) mode in the last 8 years.

So, if you haven't started writing, would you want to give it try?

How are we going to raise a curious and creative daughter?

My wife, Lydia, and I love taking walks. Every now and then, we would just put on our sneakers and head out to walk around, preferably near trees or water.

When we walk, we start conversing on deeper topics that wouldn't be possible at home.

Being a huge fan of setting guiding principles, the other day when we were walking, I told Lydia that "I want to raise Avery (our first child arriving in 23 days) to be a kid with good values, curiosity, and creativity." These would be the three main principles for our parenting.

And we started sharing our views while immersing ourselves into the nature.

Good values are top priority for us. It would mean things like integrity, humility, being respectful etc. And we trust that we could pass our values onto our daughter. As for curiosity and creativity, they are the most important skills in modern days.

When one is curious, she builds up her own independent thinking and keeps asking questions to generate new ideas. When one is curious, she is determined and relentless. Possibilities are endless. The sad part is that our society and system tend to suppress that.

When I grew up in Hong Kong, we were asked to follow the system and the rules. We simply memorized knowledge. The key to good grades was to give the correct, one answer. If there is an answer for everything, then why should I even bother to be curious about it?

I am honestly worried about this education model, it is simply not good enough. (So did my parents. This explains why I left to the U.S. at 15 years old.) So since parenting is the best education, we have to do something ourselves to develop Avery's curious mind.

Our approach to that? Lydia and I plan to prompt questions to things around us often, like "Why does it rain?" "Why are trees green?". We likely wouldn't know the answer, so we can Google it together. The goal is not to know the answer anyway, it is about asking Why and How to find out. If we do this frequent enough, maybe a curious mind can be developed?

Of course, we're perfectly aware that even if we have this approach from Avery's young age, it could turn out that she just isn't interested in this way of thinking. And that's completely fine, after all, her father also isn't and is still learning.

One thing we're anxious though - we definitely don't want Avery to be the annoying kid who is always asking "Why this?" "Why that?" and wouldn't stop. So we have to teach her to ask questions, but sometimes keep it to herself. This will be a tough one!

How Directing My Mind Got Me to My Goal in 14 Days

Kevon's tracking his progress

I just challenged myself, hard.

And the result? In 6 weeks my belly went from 87cm to 80cm. 9% reduction ­čĺ¬ No coach, just myself and my mind.

Why? I was so embarrassed about my big belly (from an unhealthy lifestyle during COVID) that I set a 14 days challenge to reverse it.

Magically I discovered how I can guide and trick my mind into this goal-setting system to make it easier to achieve my goals.

Here is how I did it.

The 5 magical ingredients

PS: no, not going to show you my belly.

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