Monthly Archives: December 2010

Are we truly as young as we feel?

I’d like to think so.

Currently, I feel like an old sack of bones. I have willingly traded my usually colourful social life for 9 months of trying to be a model student. I have spent Christmas indoors and attended only one social gathering. My holiday nights have generally included watching British holiday flicks like Love Actually, Bridget Jones and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason while feasting on stuffed olives, cheese and crackers and mugs of vanilla cinnamon tea. I have never felt so old and lonely in my life. Hopefully though my solitutde will reap good results come end of academic year.

So how young is young? Well, I think this honest poem by Samuel Ullman pretty much answers the question:

Lovely!

I hope to resume feeling “youthful” in a couple of months time.

Tammy xx

Recipe for Success

You must be asking yourself who is giving me the authority to speak about things like innovation or success especially when I am a person who feels like a failure many a time. Well, the only reason I write about these topics is because they truly fascinate me and I have very high standards sometimes. It’s good to understand what one means by success and what are the goals related to this aim. Another good question is how high should one aim? Personally, I feel we cannot define our own success if we don’t have goals in our minds. I mean what constitutes success and just when do you know that you’ve succeeded? Who are the kind of people who succeed?

Success, I feel, is very personal. It usually pertains to social status but personal success is more about believing that you are where you want to be in life and are in a position to achieve more or else settle down depending on your motivation and future plans.

In general, I have observed the following traits in the successful person:

  • THEY KNOW WHAT THEY WANT

Honestly. What more could you want?!

This one’s a bit tricky as what we want may not always be realistic. This is not to say that it is not achievable. However, people who usually have clear aims in their mind find it easier to navigate their life towards those areas they deem will lead to their definition of success. A good place to start is to ask yourself: “What does success mean to me?” Just write a list and stick it up somewhere you can see it. It will keep you on track just in case you deviate.

  • THEY WORK HARD

"Do it like they do on the Discovery Channel"

Yes, ladies and gents. There’s no way around this one. I am a habitual procrastinator and although I always get things done in the end, I know that if I gave them that extra time I could have done a much better job. The fact is that no matter how many “get-rich-quick” stories you’ve heard there’s always some element of hard work involved. Working hard is not only relevant to career or financial security but can work wonders in anything from education, to relationships to your local pie-making contest. For example, if your definition for success is “Having a long and lasting relationship” then you better be ready to work hard for it. You won’t attract positive things to your life if you don’t make an effort.

  • THEY ARE POSITIVE

One of my fave typography artists on redbubble.com. His name is jegustavsen. Click image for more.

When life gives you lemons don’t grab the salt and tequila and drown yourself in self-pity. I noticed that people who succeed often have this ability to stay calm and weather the storm. I think they manage this because in their minds they believe that whatever happens they will achieve their goals. I think it also depends on emotional stability. This is not to say that sensitive people can’t succeed but perhaps they may be tempted more than others to cancel out their gut feelings and take every bad experience as a sign that they are truly the failures they think they are. Don’t do this. It will stop you from achieving so much in your personal, social and professional life.

These are my Top 3 observations. I’m sure there are many more but this is what I have noticed in the people around me who inspire me with drive and motivation. It’s best to identify your own personal definition and take it from there.

And finally, here is MY current Recipe for Success:-

  • To leave this world a better place
  • To clear my student debt and control my finances wisely in the next 5 years (It’s always a good idea to put a date near your goals)
  • To always seek knowledge throughout my life
  • To inspire others
  • To own my own property
  • To have done voluntary work in countries outside of Europe
  • To look back at my life with satisfaction that I have lived it to the fullest and always tried to do the things I wanted even if not all were achieved
  • To stick to my core values
  • To do what I love every day
  • To have respectful relationships with those around me
  • To be remembered as an honest and trustworthy person
  • To be happy with who I am

Recipe for Innovation (Low Fat)

Mmm, the healthy stuff. See, I told you it's LOW FAT!

In my Honours degree, we read about a lot of achievers and the secrets to their success. We read of intellectual minds who concluded economic theories and mathematical functions and since the impact of the Credit Crunch in 2008 we are often questioned by lecturers to challenge these tips, tricks and theories. After all, discovery and innovation are not always ‘Eureka!’ moments. We must be able to take the old and make it new again: to see what others don’t see.

In the Patch Adams movie starring Robin Williams (one of my favourite films and actors!) the character of Arthur Mendelson tells Adams the following:-

“You’re focusing on the problem. If you focus on the problem, you can’t see the solution. Never focus on the problem..See what no one else sees. See what everyone chooses not to see… out of fear, conformity or laziness. See the whole world anew each day!”

I know this sounds like one of those “thinking hat” moments and is easier said than done but if you just give your mind some time to sink in the above film quote you will realise that our greatest ideas don’t come instantaneously but are a result of long reasoning, sharing opinions with others and observing something that strangely enough was there all along but no one really noticed.

Sometimes we’re too concerned with the problem when we should be thinking of the solution. And the worst part is when we take things for granted just because everyone believes it works that way or we are comfortable with what we have. There’s nothing wrong with feeling comfy of course but there’s always the danger of being wrapped in a blanket of false security. Just some food for thought.

2010 – Dedicated to Uncle Benny. R.I.P.

I have been absent from this blog for almost 2 months now and all the while I have been waiting for some inspiration. And finally it has come. Almost 48 hours ago my dear Uncle Benny passed away after a long battle with prostrate cancer. The battle started late last year when in November 2009 we thought we were going to lose our loved one but the good Lord gave us an extra year to enjoy his presence. After a year of suffering, my uncle left us and can finally rest in peace.

It is probably strange for anyone reading this to consider it as inspiration. My family was devastated with the news and Christmas won’t be very festive for us this year. However, when it comes to curing any sadness or emptiness I might be feeling, I have often relied on my ability to write. And write I shall.

One of the best ways to make yourself feel better is write about the good things in your life, or perhaps, the positive things that happened to you today. I am not lying. Putting thought to paper (or typing thought to word processing software) is truly deliberating! Today, I shall take the time to write about the positively inspiring things that happened to me and that I made happen this year (in no particular order). And I dedicate this blog to my Uncle Benny: a good man full of love and wisdom.

A new haircut is a real boost to the ol’ self esteem

Back in April 2010, I walked out of a hair salon, shocked my friends and nearly gave my family a heart-attack. This was an occasion where I recognised who were the people who really respected me. It was also the first time I appreciated how hair affects people’s perception of you.

Shaving half my hair off is the ballsiest thing I have ever done in my life even though it requires no effort whatsoever. I always wanted to shave my whole head but I am not yet emotionally stable for that move just yet. I didn’t make the move to natural hair just to shock people. I did it to repair my damaged hair from years of chemicals and fake extensions. My hair has grown surprisingly fast since then and a lot of people who strongly (and I mean strongly) disapproved of it, have now grown to love it. All I want to say is that I am still the same person within but with improved radical self-love. Because in order for me to have taken this first step to change I had to accept the change myself.

Unexpected career change?

OK. So this one’s a bit exaggerated as I haven’t technically started a proper career but it counts for life changing experiences. Ever since I was thirteen I knew I wanted a career in Economics. I remember my first lesson vividly. I even remember where I was sitting in class and what my first assignment was. I cannot say the same for any other subject I ever took. Therefore, my whole world was obliterated into millions of tiny pieces when I got the news that I didn’t qualify to continue to my Honours year as a Bachelor of Commerce in Economics.

At first I was depressed for a long while and considered myself a failure. I entered Banking and Finance reluctantly but was determined to give it a chance. Three months into the academic year I can say that I am loving Banking and Finance so much that I am considering a career in it. I have become so focused since this heart-breaking experience hit me last July that I stuck up a text-art poster I drew myself onto my inspiration wall in my room. It says “Work hard, make sacrifices and the universe will meet you halfway.” We really never know what our future holds. This is why we should set goals but keep ourselves open-minded at the same time to avoid dissapointment. You might not get what you want NOW, but if what you want is clear in your mind, then you will get it some time or another. Be patient.

My First Time…

… Camping!

When I was sixteen I had to attend an orientation session before starting Sixth Form. The first activity involved entering a classroom with a mixed group of males and females and taking part in various icebreaker activities. I met this guy in the class who at the time I thought was gorgeous until he opened his mouth. His conversation was brainy and his voice was manly but then we got onto the topic of camping as he was a scout. I remember telling him that I had never been camping and he scoffed at me and said “Pff, are you serious? You’re such a loser” and walked away. Unfortunately, I met many more rich snobs at this school as the year rolled by.

I have to say camping in Malta exists but it’s not as common as abroad. Not many people are aware of adventure brand names or even own adventure stuff. I’ve hiked before so I already owned hiking boots, hiking wear and other accessories but I somehow never camped before. However, just a week ago I got the chance to go camping with my friends and will be going back again in March. It’s not a big deal but it’s kind of good that I tried it. The reason being because I have this pact with myself which I have kept every year which goes like this: “Every year you must try something that you have never done before or that you have always wanted to do but never got around to doing so!”. Along with my hair and this event I can say I kept my promise for 2010.

Finding long-term inspiration


This year I met a woman who has changed my whole perception of life. She has taught me to be strong, to be independent and to attract the things I want in life. She is none other than Gala Darling and whether you’re a guy or girl you will find infinite wisdom from this woman. I didn’t meet her in person and I don’t agree with everything she says but the things I have agreed with have been a true inspiration for me. I have even purchased her podcasts and followed a lot of her advice. But I think the greatest lesson of all that she has taught me is:

“As we let our light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence actually liberates others.” – Marianne Williamson

Keep on shining through 2011 everyone!

Peace and respect,

Tammy