On Cooking What We Eat…

When I think about the good moments I spent with my grandmothers and mom, there is always a string of memories attached to the meals we shared. It’s interesting how common it is for people to associate very good traditional food with their grandmothers and mothers. Everyone seems to be especially nostalgic nowadays, in the prime of fast food and quick bites. Even the healthiest among us are often reaching for a low fat, low carb, high protein packaged donut… that expires in 2025. For lack of a better word… yuck.

The food we eat today endures some major struggles. The meat does not go from the farmer’s hand to the butcher’s to our kitchens anymore. By the time something reaches your dinner table, hundreds of people and machines have touched it, and it has probably travelled a long distance. For the conscientious individuals who care about what they put in their mouths, the last step of the process, cooking, is the first place to start regaining control.

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On Intergenerational Blame…

“Kids today are spoiled by participation trophies!”

“Oh! Old people! They can never think outside the box!”

“Millennials and their avocado toast! Of course they can’t afford housing!”

“The Baby Boomers ruined the earth and the economy for us!”

STOP. Wait a minute. Fill your cup, put some liquor in it.

It is so easy to blame, but the root of blame is ignorance.

The only pathway to true understanding is conversation, research, and asking all the right questions. Blaming a group of people for something you don’t like only hinders the process of understanding what really caused the problem. Then, good luck solving it!

Newsflash: a generation consists of A LOT of people. Think about yourself for a moment. Which generation were you born into? How many of the stereotyped characteristics of that generation actually apply to you? Are you another highly predictable number?

Don’t tell me, let me guess… you’re different!

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On the Fear of Missing Out…

FOMO, the Fear of Missing Out, is not a new concept, but has become somewhat more recognizable in the contemporary age, now that we know a little bit too much about everybody and can see where they are and what they’re doing at every given moment.

You probably already recognize what FOMO looks like: everyone is on their phones instead of enjoying the moment, always talking to someone who isn’t there, running from one event to another – three weddings in one day, anybody?

But what about the losses caused by this resolute desire not to miss out on anything?Read More »

On Dementors…

Have you ever almost given up on an ambition of yours just before you finally succeeded? Why were you ready to give up? Who or what got in the way? What would you have missed out on if you had given up?

When aiming towards a goal, some of us are slow and steady, while others charge ahead and bulldoze through everything irrelevant. Both ways work, depending on your personality and risk tolerance. However, one thing we all have in common is facing distractors (or being distractors for others) along the way, especially in the final mile.

You’ve heard that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step; I am here to tell you that it also ends with a pessimist with his nose to the sky 9 times out of 10. Even when you ignore the distractors and move on past the finish line, they remain unconvinced.

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On Music…

I once met a man who refused to listen to sorrowful or angry music. At the time, I thought he was being a little dramatic.

I put this thought in the back of my mind and continued to listen to the music I loved. Over the years, I recognized that this music evoked more and more painful memories… and they were not even always my own. I was identifying with the people represented in the story of each song in a very profound way.

I still love all my music but, today, I am aware of how much it affects my mood and well-being. I make more of an effort to choose “happy songs.” I find this funny because I am now listening more to the music of my ancestors and my parents. Growing up listening almost exclusively to English music, my favourite songs are now a cultural fusion of languages I might not even understand.

This led to another discovery. Even if I do not understand the lyrics of a song, it still evokes the feeling it’s meant to. Who cries to a song without lyrics? I do. I was intrigued by this and did some more research, thereby discovering a broad array of scientific evidence that the music itself manipulates the very state of the cells in our bodies. See the video below for a visual representation of this.

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On Debt…

Are you in what seems to be an endless cycle of debt that you cannot crawl out of?

Does it feel like the bills keep coming and the salary never rises to match?

The first question you should be asking yourself is: “What kind of debt is it, and how is it serving me?”

If your debt is not serving you strategically, you have fallen into the consumer trap. I’m talking about credit card debt that you’ve collected over the years for purposes that you can’t even recall. I’m talking about home renovation debts or car debts that are out of your means. I’m talking about that student loan that, despite serving its purpose a long time ago, you never got around to paying. I’m talking about your habit to purchase the newest model of that gadget you love annually. If you are seeking to cultivate good luck in your life, these debts need to be snuffed out.

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On What We Wish We Knew… at 18

I set about on a mission to collect some insights for my younger readers who might feel overwhelmed by big decisions for their future.

In the Western world, 18 is the “right of passage” age. We make many of our most fundamental decisions at 18: what to study, where to live, where to work, who to date, how to balance work and play, etc. Of course, we keep making these decisions and many others throughout our adulthood as well.

At 18, I was preparing for launch to University; my parents moved halfway across the world, and I couldn’t go with them. Many of my friends, now in their late 20s to late 30s, faced similarly challenging events around that time. Some moved out. Others went to university or trade school. Others went straight to work. Some had kids. Some got married.

Here are some of the tips they wish someone would have shared with them when they were 18:

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On Home…

They say that home is where your heart is.

They also say that home is all about location, location, location.

What if my heart is floating between the dunes of the Sahara?

Being a Third Culture Kid means that it’s quite natural for people like me to feel divided between all the places they call home and to subsequently struggle when designing a “stable” home for their future. On the other hand, people like my husband who were “born and raised” in one place may face the opposite conflict: if home can only mean one place, how can they possibly leave it to explore the globalized world?

These are two sides of the same coin. In essence, many of us tie our idea of home to a specific place, and this can either contribute to our feeling of eternal displacement, or can cause us to feel tormented by every change that comes along the way.

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On Reciprocal Kindness…

Friendship and love are two-way streets. Without reciprocal kindness and mutual respect, they quickly fall off track.

“When a man is guided by the principles of reciprocity and consciousness, he is not far from the moral law. Whatever you do not wish for yourself, do not do unto others” – Confucius.

Whatever you do wish for yourself, do unto others. Like a mirror, the reflection of your actions will manifest in your own life.

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On Purpose…

When someone asks you who you are or what matters to you, do you tend to respond with an explanation about what you do?

Our jobs quickly come to define us, but there is so much more to us than that.

If you have chosen a career that aligns with your purpose, what you do will be in line with who you are. Congratulations. Your condition is rare. If the two do not align, you are not alone, and you need to read this!

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