Wednesday, January 20, 2016

ENFP Growing Older (And Jaded)

As I get older, I find myself being able to spontaneously trust people less and less easily. What that looks like is me holding my true opinions to myself (when I deem others unable to understand, agree with or empathize with what I would say). However, even if I withhold my true opinions, it doesn't mean that I advocate behaving the OPPOSITE of what I believe to be true. 

As a result, if I don't trust you, I would just act at a very minimal level of polite. There will be no sharing of big ideas, personal beliefs, jokes (maybe just some socially awkward ones if I can't help myself), personal past experiences or most of all, advice. To avoid conflict, I may eventually just work at keeping a distance physically.

Sadly, these are all things that I dearly love to and wish to share with everyone. I feel sad when I have to withhold this natural part of me. Still, I know now that you shouldn't assume that everybody will treat what you hold precious with care. It's the same principle behind some moms not feeling comfortable with just handing their baby to any random stranger. My thought processes, feelings and beliefs are all very precious to me. I would never just throw them around now like I used to.

This also means that I am now much less vocal in a group setting where untrusted individuals are. I don't like feeling misinterpreted and then judged for the misinterpretation of what I am trying to say. Then again, I also REALLY dislike having to burn inside when I have something which I think is super important to share, but am unable to comfortably. I feel a lot less effective in discussions and debates now as a result. I just give up before it even starts because I feel that banter, if likely to end in me feeling unresolved conflict, is pointless. 

I can't help but think that this is such a shame. Surely there are other individuals out there like me who feel stifled.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Brendan Turns 10 Months

This past Saturday, Brendan turned 10 months old. I actually forgot that it was the 16th on that day and only realized it today. I haven't written about my dear baby for some time and I think now's a good time to catch up.

That afternoon, we attempted to get to the Treetop Walk via the Venus Drive entrance. I used to come here with Joel and Chloe so often that it's funny I haven't made it to the actual Treetop Walk once!

Jerry wore Brendan in the Ergobaby carrier for the entire 4.8km walk. I knew NS was good for something!

I was glad to see that there was an actual path with improvements (wooden boards over mud) now.

There were monkeys grazing near the entrance and one of them tried to get aggressive with me as I walked behind Jerry and Brendan. My mom instinct came out and I growled at it as I knew best to. Haha!

I felt very nostalgic walking along the stream, remembering the days when Joel and Chloe were still "little" and we waded and caught fish here together.

I don't know why I have a nice camera when all I bother to use ever since Brendan was born, is my iPhone 6. The photos are grainy at best. But it's so convenient!

This was a cool little cave formed by a fallen tree.

We had a nice walk but because we started out late, we didn't make it to the gate on time. I can't believe I didn't get to go on it YET AGAIN!

Got home, waited for Brendan to fall asleep at his usual 7pm, then whipped up a meal as fast as I could because we were starving.

On Sunday, Brendan got to play with his little god-cousins at House of Bread. I love that a little group of children is forming and blossoming in our Bible study.

Today, my baby is being kind of clingy.

I wonder if it has anything to do with being woken up rudely last night by loud noises. He just doesn't seem to want to be alone even though he's usually fine with that.

Thursday, January 07, 2016

For The Future Generations

We are living in a world of "information" now and in order to attain "success", it may seem imperative to become as knowledgeable as possible. However, knowledge, to me, is a leveller. And besides, Google.
What will make you stand out in time to come is not necessarily having the most knowledge. I propose three things (that unfortunately one may not be able to learn in a traditional school system):

1) Discernment- The ability to notice the fine-point details, the ability to judge something well or the ability to understand and comprehend something. (
Imagine having 100 dinner options to choose from and 5 vastly different and hungry friends to placate. Your life is on the line. Discernment will help you sieve through all the information to make the right decision.

2) Wisdom- The ability to know what is true or right, common sense or the collection of one's knowledge.
Why is knowing what is "true" or "right" important? Because by definition, what is "true" (faithful; loyal; constant) does not change. What is true today will be true tomorrow as it was yesterday. If you can use your discernment to sieve through the noise, it will also take wisdom to identify what is "good" and "beneficial" for the long-term. 

3) Humility- the state or quality of being humble; absence of vanity or excessive pride.
I was going to write "good manners" at first, but then as I thought longer about this point, I decided that Humility was the best way to put it. You may be well-mannered on the outside, but only out of selfish pride or fear. Many people are perceptive. They can smell fake from across the galaxy. Therefore, I concluded that humility is the base ingredient for any genuine good social behavior anywhere in the world. In relation to the original point of this writing, true humility and subsequent good manners will make you stand out from the others who are equally knowledgeable, smart and wise. Given a choice between having a relationship with a sea urchin and a golden lab, most people would pick the golden lab. 

How as a parent, can I equip my children with these qualities that I believe can help them better navigate and adapt to the world they were born into? What if I am not particularly discerning, wise or humble?

The first thing I would think to do, is to learn more about what constitutes discernment, wisdom or humble. I would surround myself with any person, book, experience, movie, etc that can teach me more about these values.

Secondly, practice makes perfect. What better way to learn than to put these values into practice as and when you can? The other benefit of this is that as I practice these values, my child can watch me make mistakes and recover. He can then learn from my mistakes instead of making them on his own.

Thirdly, I would encourage my child to exercise these values alongside myself. In every little action- even putting his toys away (at a young age), I could surely have him practice discernment (where to put what), wisdom (why to put what where) and humility/good manners (why to put what where so as to benefit others besides myself in the long run).