Wednesday, August 15, 2012

The Two Things I've Learned in Life

Something strange that I’ve noticed about Youtube is that for some reason, people have imagined us to be role models. Not sure why this is, but let me tell you – I would never profess or pretend to have lived a perfect life or that I was a perfect person. But despite the fact that I keep my channel to very surface level things like makeup and skincare, I still get tons of messages from the younger population about the future and their happiness. I’m glad that you think I’m happy, and I must say that I’m much happier than I can remember being, but it was a long and slow journey for me. But as I’ve stumbled along life, I can really only share these two pieces of “wisdom” with you, that I think are actually true, and can apply to everyone.

1. Surround yourself with good people
Growing up my mom used to always chide me that “birds of a feather flock together”. Although I think there’s a lot of old school Asian elitism built in there, I can’t help but say that there’s a lot of truth to this statement. [Admittedly a lot of what my mother told me ended up being true- but that’s a whole ‘nother story and not one I want to admit to anytime soon lulz]

There’s a saying that you are the middle of the five people you spend the most time with. When I reflect on my own life, this has always proved to be true. When I spent time with people who were selfish, self absorbed, lazy, insatiably materialistic, etc. I was much of the same. But now that I spend a lot of time focused on my career and studies, I find that my group has unconsciously changed. It wasn’t even a conscious going of ways- we simply stopped having things in common when I didn’t want to go out partying every night of the week anymore.

I think its just natural for us to be influenced by those around us. Its very hard to be unmotivated when you’re watching everyone else around you chase their dreams, and its also hard to care when everyone around you is indifferent about their future. This isn’t to say this is a blanket statement and there aren’t exceptions to the rule- but it even applies to fitness. People who like to work out like people who work out- and it'd be harder (but not impossible) to “let go” of one’s self so to speak. Surrounding yourself with good people may not "fix" your life, but it will dispel all of the silly, self-pitying excuses you give yourself to not get the things you want.

Surrounding yourself with good people doesn’t just affect things like your career though, I truly think it greatly affects your overall happiness and well being. Happy, successful people, unlike bitter people, are eager to share their happiness and success with the people around them. I don’t think you’ll completely avoid terrible events or your own slip and falls along the way, but your chances at happiness are much higher with people who love you around you. As far as friends go, quality > quantity, always. You'll make better life choices, which will almost certainly lead to a much happier life, filled with more opportunities and good memories. 

2. Know what you want
Because the largest demographic of Youtube is the under 18 crowd, I get tons of emails daily asking about my career, how I chose it, how they should choose their major etc. Let me just tell you that I can’t tell you whether to take the solid medical field route or to try your luck at whatever your niche passion is- but one of the best things you can do is know what you want in life.

This applies to your friendships and relationships as well. It’s HARD to hit the ground running if you don’t even know where you’re running towards. And it’s even harder to be competitive with people your age who have fully immersed themselves in this career for the past 5 years- and have 5 years of solid experience in front of you.

So how do you know what you want? Some (aggravating) people seem to know what they want from the moment they come out of their mother’s womb and stick unwaveringly to it their entire life. I think the majority of us will have to stumble along- until we find what makes us happy. So how do you start “trying out” different fields? Get a volunteer job, an internship, a part-time, or even ask to shadow a doctor or whatever it is that you want to do. Jump in to that field, and it’ll help you decide if you could stick with it for life.  You could attend networking meet ups in that industry (search for these online, I promise there’s tons), or even start a blog or channel about the said topic. I also suggest that you find a mentor. Hell, even take a seemingly irrelevant-to-your-major class in college. You’ll gain experience, as well as real world knowledge that you can then apply to your career. Even if you don’t go with this said career track I promise you almost every bit of work experience you have will help build you up for your future career/job- even if they’re in different niches.

At the end of the day different things make different people happy- some need money, some need fulfillment, others need routine and security. So I could, quite frankly, never really answer any of your questions. But these are the two tips that have remained true throughout my life, and that I think will truly bring you long term happiness, and all that happy wonderful stuff. Oh. And pet puppies. That works too :) 

This is my friend's dog Kona :) she's a lab rescue- but she's INCREDIBLY timid. I worked with rescues for years and have never met a dog that was so scared. She's also not food motivated- so food and bribes aren't working. Any tips on getting her to open up? :[ I know you should take it at their pace and let them initiate the interaction but its been a few weeks now and she's still having a hard time and we really want her to be well socialized due to the owner's career and lifestyle. Any suggestions would be welcome :)

Until next time!


Mel said...

Hey Jackie. Thanks for a wonderful post. I'm your age and in my final 3 months of medical school and couldn't agree more with all you've said. Sorry to be nosy, but what did you major in at college (or uni as it is here in Australia)?

I'm mainly commenting about the beautiful doggie Kona. Has she spent any time with other dogs? Perhaps introducing her to other puppies or even a more mature dog will help her get out of her shell. I have 4 dogs and the 2nd youngest is incredibly afraid of strangers and leaving the house (i.e. going for walks) but she is a lot calmer if she's walking with the eldest dog who is a perfect walker.
And the other thing I've learnt is that when meeting a new dog, one must never rush in enthusiastically to pet them on the head. Most dogs prefer if you squat or sit on the floor so that you're "their size" and seem less intimidating. So if everyone she meets stays serene and kneels down, she might get used to humans being safe.
Hope that helps! I'm no Cesar Milan, though I wish I was!!

Stephanie Cheng said...

Hello ! I'm a youtube subscriber of yours from Malaysia! 20 years old this year :) Just think you're gorgeous and I especially agree with the first tip you gave :) Thought you gave a voice to what I've been thinking :) Anyways, stay gorgeous and being a health freak!

Annie said...

Hey Jackie,

I love following your blog and reading your posts. You're gorgeous and I love your voice on youtube. I'm so impressed you can eat so healthy. I read up on nutrition all the time but still go for those unhealthy stuff.

I'm a food blogger so if you're a food lover like I am, please follow me!

faye lu said...

what a great post! i can only imagine how much "pressure" you must feel once you're tagged as a role model and have a lot of young girls asking random life non-beauty related questions. i completely agree with surrounding yourself with good people - as i grow older (now in my late 20s) i find myself becoming almost allergic to negative woes-me kind of people. and find myself a lot happier just surrounding myself with happier people =)

missjngo said...

Wow, just wow. I'm heading to college in less than a month & I've never been so afraid of making the wrong choices. I'm going to University of Irvine & I've felt that it wasn't such a great choice since I'm not that school-oriented. Also, I'm ridiculously paranoid as to what I want as a major or even with my life. Your post left me a little bit at ease. I'll stubble along the way, but I'll figure out what I want soon enough. This was beautifully written, enough said! :)

Yuri K ~ said...

Thank you thank you thank you for million billion times!!!

-from a lost confusing college kid :3 xoxo

heejukim said...

My respect for you just doubled. You seem very self aware... So jealous haha. Med school for me... Hopefully one day :')

tifffany_keep_going said...

Hey Jackie, thanks for reminding me that I should know what I really want deep down in my heart.....;)

junglejelly said...

i think it's admirable that you do that for animals.. I've had a few dogs as pets.. along with a bunch of fish, a hamster, cat and whatever I could bring my parents to accept. I have the MOST perfect dog right now. A quiet and playful pomeranian. a little on the obese side, with a bit of an allergy to grass or whatever is in people's yards. but I found that she's happy as long as she has a steady home. I don't let her out on high pollen days which is 90% of the year... but she seems to adapt well to indoor life. I think with puppies, curiosity overcomes stubborness. I think that you should just eat some thing in front of the puppy while doing something else at its level.. on the floor. I'd probably eat an apple everyday on the floor in front of the puppy, untill the puppy came to me. Evventually, when the puppy sees that it needs to come to you, it will. Puppies get fed by a mother who just plops down in front of her puppies, if the puppy is old enough to eat on its own, it has this instinct to move towards food. Maybe let the puppy watch you feed other dogs. I really think the owner should be doing this. changing behavior takes time, but it get undone when there is someone new introduced right when the puppy gets comfortable.

Rochelle said...

Your very pretty and I love your blog...I'm your new follower yay! RoRos World

wan jinling said...

I think you're on the right path, Jackie :)

Homeisontheweb said...

Definitely true ! I think a lot of people just don't realize these things because we can't look at things in retrospect so it's best for us to tell the younger people, and I'm pretty sure I'm younger than you Jackie so thanks :) And I hate when my mom's right too, I don't like admitting when she is because I'll give her that sense of satisfaction and she'll rub it in my face in that motherly way... Asian moms!

Sharina said...

Wonderful post, Jackie! Im a new reader/follower. :) You are gorgeous :) I love your blog, already!

jeen said...

Great post :) It's really relevant to me at this point in my life because I'm just about to start university at the beginning of next year.

Michaela Scott said...

For the puppy, try baby talk and cuddling. You may have to baby this dog A LOT so it feels nurtured. Also (and you've probably done this) but let it interact with other puppies for a while or better yet a kitten. The different species of animal will peek her interest but still have playing potential.