Here at Preen, we’re fully aware that adult life doesn’t always go as smoothly (and look as beautiful) as curated Instagram feeds. We all face challenges amidst all the good things. Meet Mikka Wee, a former food editor-turned-working gal in Singapore, who’s about to share all the ups and downs that come with adulting and living. Welcome to Bless This Mess!
It’s finally the end of 2019’s first quarter. How are you feeling? So far, I’d like to think 2019 has been good to me. I’ve been learning so much about myself ever since I started intentionally stepping up and showing up for myself. It has been very uncomfortable—I feel like I’ve been catapulted into a new universe, but when I really started to push myself, that’s when I saw change happen.
Let me tell you that it has not been an easy journey. Change feels weird. Finding what feels good is like testing the waters, and for someone like me, I always find myself biting off more than I could chew. I wanted to read this many books—even write my own book. I wanted to blog at least twice a month. I wanted to wear so many hats and succeed in all of them.
Now that I’m older, I’ve learned to be more content and to work with what I’ve been given. I’m currently re-reading Haruki Murakami’s memoir, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running, and he said something that resonated so much in this season of life. He wrote, “You open the fridge and can make a nice—actually even a pretty smart—meal with leftovers. All that’s left is an apple, an onion, cheese, and eggs, but you don’t complain. You make do with what you have. As you age you learn to be happy with what you have. That’s one of the few good points of growing older.”
This is how I feel about the gift of time. To be more specific, January and February were extremely exhausting. I made a lot of goals and set a lot of hard rules such as No Shopping, Write Twice in My Blog Every Month, Read Two Books a Month, Meditate 15 Minutes a Day…all this on top of my day job and a few side projects that I work on during my free days. I don’t like tooting my busy horn, and as much as possible, I just want more clarity and time to unwind.
So when March came about, I realized that it was time to sit down and reassess my goals. What was it that I really wanted to accomplish and what would these hard rules achieve? I contemplated on my life, what I was doing on a day-to-day basis, and questioned whether they were necessary. This is how I started to pare down my goals and focus more on what mattered.
Health is my #1 goal this 2019
If I were to tell you what my goals are this year, there are only two: Get healthy and build my savings. In order to achieve my health goals this year, a serious amount of commitment is needed. I workout five times every week, 40 minutes to an hour when I do.
I needed to really pick out the items in my list of goals that I didn’t mind letting go of, and to me, that was writing in my blog. I felt like I was doing it for the sake of doing it, and it didn’t really excite me anymore. It felt more like a chore than anything, so I loosened my grip on that, relaxed, and decided to just invest that time in working out.
All I want is to travel and to explore the world
My friend and I had a pact that if we didn’t shop, we could buy a designer bag. Now that I’m older, I see the appeal of having a nice bag as an investment. However, the more I reflected, the more I realized that I would rather use my money to travel and experience new things such as walk the Camino de Santiago in Spain or take my mom to Japan. And these are not cheap things. I really cringe at those “Book a ticket and just leave” memes because they are so freaking irresponsible. What are they exactly preaching to today’s youth? It’s like they’re saying it’s okay to go broke and not work hard because delayed gratification sucks. Well, I’ve been down that messy road, and I now know better.
Sometimes, giving up your goals makes way for more rewarding ones
Giving up blogging was hard for me. Why? Because it was always innate in me to want to write. But what was really hard to admit was that my “Why” was slipping away. It wasn’t fun anymore. I used to blog about my teenage angst a lot, but right now, I realized that my canvas for sharing my art or words has moved to Instagram. And I find it more fun to express myself in such a dynamic environment. No matter how in denial I was before, I am accepting it; and acceptance is a step towards growth. Giving up blogging allowed me to focus my attention on what I truly and sincerely wanted to achieve this year, and that’s to make my body stronger.
Now that the second quarter of the year is approaching, I urge you to look at your list of goals for 2019. Have a moment of reflection and internalize these goals that you want to achieve. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do they really matter? Ask yourself why you want to do it and if you are willing to give that goal up to focus on a bigger goal that you care more about instead. Most of the time, we are ignorant to the way we scatter our time and energy—maybe to prove something to the world or to ourselves. Maybe the answer is to just let go of some of your goals and plant your seeds in the soil that will yield the ripest, most bountiful harvest. Go on, get uncomfortable. Let go and gain so much more.
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are solely those of the author in her private capacity and do not in any way represent the views of Preen.ph, or any other entity of the Inquirer Group of Companies.
Art by Marian Hukom
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