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Learning while doing home chores

In the past 2 months, I feel like I ran out of time for reading and learning — well, we can always learn from people we talk to or things we experience. But I meant learning from reading — and it makes me really frustrated.

In that two months I was handling two different activities so my schedule was a bit hectic. Usually I can squeeze in reading online news and other interesting sites such as the Harvard Business Review, Oprah and many others at work. But when I became really busy, I couldn’t quite concentrate on what I am reading so I just ended up bookmarking stuff and focus on my job.

After work, if I’m not out to have dinner with friends, I’m home talking to my loved ones over Gtalk/Yahoo Messenger or watching a good movie to unwind or doing some chores.

One Saturday a friend invited me over to the hotel where she checked in so we can catch up after her vacation in the Philippines. There I had the time to watch TV — I stopped watching TV since college — and realized how I missed it, the comfort of just sitting back and taking in information. Yes, I was watching news and documentaries instead of HBO.

Then and there, a thought hit me. Why not listen to online news and documentaries instead of music while doing home chores? So the following weekend while doing my weekend routine — cleaning my room, washing the dishes, washing my laundry, folding my clothes, ironing, etc. — I tuned in to Channel News Asia to catch up with the latest news or listen to documentaries.

There are setbacks though as sometimes you really have to see what is happening to understand what you are listening. So I position my computer in a way that I can easily glance at it or listen to TED talks.

I was happy to finish my chores with a bunch of new learning! When you are faced with the same predicament, hope this will work for you too 🙂

Little wonders

An inspiring song when you are feeling down. Life is indeed full of little wonders.

let it go,
let it roll right off your shoulder
don’t you know
the hardest part is over
let it in,
let your clarity define you
in the end
we will only just remember how it feels

our lives are made
in these small hours
these little wonders,
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away,
but these small hours,
these small hours still remain

let it slide,
let your troubles fall behind you
let it shine
until you feel it all around you
and i don’t mind
if it’s me you need to turn to
we’ll get by,
it’s the heart that really matters in the end

our lives are made
in these small hours
these little wonders,
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away,
but these small hours,
these small hours still remain

all of my regret
will wash away somehow
but i cannot forget
the way i feel right now

in these small hours
these little wonders
these twists & turns of fate
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away but these small hours
these small hours, still remain,
still remain
these little wonders
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away
but these small hours
these little wonders still remain

How to wake up early: Hello sunshine!

Menchu Hilot-Buslon

 

Waking up early is a struggle to many but surviving the day unprepared due to waking up late is not a good experience either. According to Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, “Sow a thought, reap an action; sow an action, reap a habit; sow a habit, reap a character; sow a character, reap a destiny.” Committing to waking up early can be daunting but fret not, there are ways and things to help you overcome the pull of dreamland.

Scents. Instead of hitting the snooze button, try to inhale something that will awaken your senses. I keep a mint inhaler beside me all the time.

Coffee or tea. The aroma of coffee is just heavenly, isn’t it? If you are one of those non-coffee drinkers, try tea or warm milk. These will surely pep up your morning.

Dose of inspiration. Be inspired by listening to inspirational or spiritual videos such as TED.com. What better way to start the day than some nuggets of wisdom?

Music. Listening to instrumental or new age music calms my thoughts and stimulates creativity. It may also work for you or play what you prefer — be it rock music, jazz or acoustic — after all, who doesn’t like music?

Exercise. This is like hitting two birds with one stone. You don’t only get to wake up early, you will also be healthy. Jogging can be more rewarding as you get to breathe fresh air and see green things at the park but you can also do it at home. Try some jumping jacks, wall sits, push ups and lunges.

The start is always the hardest. Don’t get discouraged when you fail at the beginning. Just keep on trying and develop this habit gradually. I tried just now which coincides with the leap day.