What does the world need more of?

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As I was scrolling through my notes, I realized that I had once asked 15 people what they thought the world needs more of. I'm pretty mad at myself for not uploading this sooner, but as reread their answers I couldn't help but feel moved.

  1. The world needs more people with drive. The possibilities of what a person can achieve when truly driven really are almost infinite. For the most part, we're all born with the same tools. The only reason that most people don’t excel is that they choose not to - J,N.

  2. The world needs more connections. Actual human connection face to face. We're missing that more than anything these days. - R.A.

  3. The world needs more french fries. The world needs more empathy. - E.C.

  4. The world needs more humble hearts. I just think there’s a lot of people out there who compare themselves to others because lately society or even just people themselves give an image that being smart, wealthy, physically fit, etc. and all other things that don’t necessarily make people happy. - S.I.

  5. The world needs more open-mindedness and acceptance. - S.A.

  6. The world needs more green, tree, and nature. We’re fucking up the earth, man. - M.T.

  7. I think people need to go after their passions more and not be afraid to live. I think so many people are on autopilot and aren’t living their lives; I think more people need to be present and connected and take care of themselves. Really, it comes down to the fact that people just really need to actually live life and live in a way that’s not based on fear - K.S.

  8. The world needs more profitable education - M.N.

  9. Justice, order, and balance - J.R.

  10. The world needs more love. We live in a society today plagued with widespread misunderstanding of cultures and people different from our own backgrounds. We all need to realize what’s happening around us and the thought patterns within us. We need to slow down, open up our minds and hearts to the abundance of beauty this world has to offer by getting to know our neighbors and those perceived to be “different” from us. Only then can we begin to heal the hatred, see the humanity within each other, and lead our world into a better age - S.A.

  11. The world needs more kindness, compassion, and love to heal humanity and increase equality around the world. So we can share the resources we have with those that need more. So we can decrease this gap in society that is based on the color of our skin and our heritage. We need these things so the world will be a better place for the next generation - A.A.

  12. Self-awareness. Too many people caught up in how things affect them. They need to see how things affect both them and the community around them - N.A.

  13. The world needs more laughter. I feel as though people have forgotten how to take a joke or see the humor in a bad situation. Take me for instance: I lost both my parents within a span of almost two years. The first thing I told one of my best friends was: “Hey! I’m orphan!” He didn’t know whether to laugh or not, but I said it was okay. It was my way of coping. I can't reverse what happened and I know for a fact that everyone around me is going to be walking on eggshells trying not to make me sad or cry, so I might as well get a good laugh in. Not to mention, this past year, alone, has been the pinnacle of sensitivity. You can't seem to say anything without a community of people being offended or taking something way out of context. With how upside down the world has been, people need something positive and there's nothing more positive than laughter. It's contagious and universal. Nobody laughs in a certain language and that's what makes it more beautiful and significant. If there's anything that needs to be spread on this earth, then laughter should be it. - N.M.

  14. The world needs more truth. Everyone questions everything so much, but no one really wants to say the truth. How a lot of things are too sugar-coated, you know what I’m saying? - H.T.

  15. The world needs to start to accept what is and move on. Not everything will work out the way you want them to not because it's not time, but because it's not YOUR time yet - R.P.

What do you think the world needs more of?

 

The Honest Truth About Why We Never Start

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“Can I be honest with you?” My childhood friend, brother, and the person I go to when I’m in a creative rut was about to get real. He was about to lay it on me and I don't think I was ready.

“Shoot.”

“You are so finicky with your projects.”

Bingo. I was, and I knew this. I thrive in generating ideas – ideas for novels, blog posts, videos, social media campaigns, interviews, projects, and the list goes on and on. If there’s one gift I’m proud of having and can confidently vouch for myself, it’s creating ideas out of thin air. If there's one thing I wasn't good at, it was committing to myself.

But here I was, never have executed anything to its fullest potential and I wasn’t sure why.

“I know,” I responded. Did I really know, though? 

“You're too worried about what other people will think.”

True.

I wish I could say I didn’t care and blissfully go about my life not giving two shits, but I do. This wasn’t the reason.

“You’re scared.”

Also true – but not in fear of success or “making it” or failing for that matter; it was the fear of, “what if this wasn’t my mission? what if this wasn't what God or the Universe wanted for me.”

That was a scary thought because at this present moment I wanted this, and it's all I've known. Since I was thirteen, I dreamt of becoming an author who wrote magical stories about whimsical realms. Yet, I've accumulated years of crafted excuses and a bunch of "I'm too busy" nonsense that prevented me from fully committing to my novel, because God forbid, what if I wasn’t meant to be an author?

So what’s better than facing it? Avoiding it.

Avoiding that moment– if it even exists– that your dreams were not meant to be. If it weren't meant to be, there's a great chance that something better is waiting for you around the cornerIf those dreams weren't meant to be, then you were meant for greater things.

Cliche, I know. So I learned to look at it like this instead.

What if we're meant to have multiple dreams? What if the story I had written was meant to be a movie instead? What if I just commit to this for the sake of committing to myself for a change? What if the reason I fail as a fantasy author is that I was meant to be a YA author?

You never know unless you reach that fork in the road. You also will never know unless you start walking down that road.

I mean, whoever said we're limited to just one dream anyway?

8 Things I Learned From Not Doing

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It took me years before I realized what I was giving up by not doing. I wanted to live in a foreign country and build a name for myself as a writer. I also wanted to be a full-time blogger and have built a business by 25. On that long list of things I wanted to complete and accomplish — publishing a book was one of them.

After years of going around in circles, I realized that I never took that first step — which was quite obvious because the first step is always doing. These were the valuable lessons I learned from not doing, not showing up and not acting on all the things I wanted.

1) Fear is literally just a mindset

With the bad, many people may fear the good. Because with every good thing, there’s always a bad thing that follows because life is a makeup of balance.

Yet, there’s something worse than fear and its control. It’s letting that fear take complete control of your mind, your actions, your emotions, and your power. It’s letting fear take the steering wheel when you can let any other emotion drive you — including ambition, hope, motivation, happiness, and success.

2) The younger generations are losing out on a role model

You’re going to make an impact in this lifetime. There’s no ifs, buts, and there are no maybes, too. The thing is you will only make an impact if you show up and you do what it is that stirs within you while making some mistakes along the way.

If there’s no movement, there will be no discoveries and the younger generations are going to miss out on learning from an amazing mentor — you.

3) Regret

Regret is one of the most obvious things you will experience by not doing. The thing with regret is he has a companion, and that companion is “letting go.” Letting go is neither fun easy, and some regrets run so deep that sometimes it takes a lifetime to let go.

4) Life isn’t meant to be lukewarm

There needs to be shift at some point in our lives because we are human beings designed for growth. There’s nothing wrong with sitting in comfort if you feel fulfilled — once again, the idea and definition of comfort differentiate by the person.

Even in the most comfortable stages, drive yourself to feel all the sensations that life encompasses. You’ll amaze yourself with how much you are willing to tolerate and actually settle for.

5) Years will start looking blank.

When we’re stuck in a cycle, it usually takes one traumatic or impactful event for us to remember that particular year. Those Wednesday nights, Thursdays waiting in line at the bank, dinners, and get-togethers will all somehow get mushed together.

Someone asked me if I remembered what happened in 2015. I stared blankly. I didn’t remember anything, because I was doing things on repeat and almost robotic. I was working two jobs, partying all night, rinse, eat, and then repeat. This went on for a couple of years and I never got closer to publishing that book or moving to a foreign country.

Now, if people were to ask me what I did in 2017, I can say that I took a leap of faith and went to Bali for a two-week program to become a digital nomad. And as for 2018? I just bought a ticket to Bali to start that writing career I’ve always wanted.

6) You’re letting down the people who believe in your power and your craft.

There will be people those who support you since the beginning and those who will probably give a nodding head and go about their business until you make it.

On the days you don’t believe in yourself, there is a handful of people who will continue to nudge you forward because they see potential in you.

Know that you have a gift and be grateful that the world has given you a support system on the days you don’t see it yourself.

7) We all have an untapped superpower

The more you do, the more you will learn; it seems simple, but it’s just as powerful. By dedicating every day to running for an hour, maybe you’ll come to realize that you might want to give marathons a chance. If you dedicate yourself to writing every day, maybe you come to realize that you enjoy writing stand-up comedy rather than literary fiction. Just by doing, you are tapping into another superpower of yours that continues to fuel the craft you have to offer the world.

8) Time will not wait for you

Time will never wait for anyone; not for you, not for me, not for the richest person and neither will it wait for someone with the purest heart. It’s unbiased and by not doing, all you are doing is letting time slip. And one day, you will look back at the “what ifs” and “only if I did that” and even then, time will keep moving.

So just go and DO.

Do it well and do it with love.

Apple Juice + Smooth Jazz

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I got a terrible fever over the past weekend and what I wanted more than anything was apple juice. I even got a lecture from the cashier at the corner gas station because I should actually be drinking “orange juice” and that “apple juice” contained all sugar. I didn’t care. I still wanted my damn apple juice.

It's only because when I was a kid, my parents would always give me apple juice when I would have a fever to make me feel better. That’s the one thing I remembered, and it felt like a little treat after feeling like a hot and miserable toaster strudel. Since then, I would only crave apple juice when I was sick.

Well now that I'm over my sickness, I decided to finally get out of this funk I’ve been in from writing. Instead of tuning into my usual Spotify playlists, I realized I made a playlist in college called smooth jazz. My mom didn’t let me listen to much hip-hop when I was a kid, and it was always smooth jazz at home and in the car.

The sounds of Peter White, Bob James, and Four Play brought calmness over me – one I haven't felt in such a long time. It's been some time since I listened to the gang that brought me back to those hot summer days in San Bernadino, where our black stereo box sat in the kitchen of our small tiny apartment on the second floor. While my mom would be reading, I would be coloring, and we'd sit at the table listening to music.

It made me realize that even during the "bad times” or what I thought were "bad" (when I was a toaster strudel), were the little things that I would find joy in later in life.

Things like apple juice and smooth jazz.