New year’s Resolution for 2018

I don’t make new year’s resolutions. Tony and I stopped making them a while ago.

I remember distinctly making vision boards and we even decorated an arrow that we had written our intentions on, as part of an exercise we did during one of the many personal development seminars we went to.

I remember just as distinctly looking at my life and seeing that none of the things on the vision boards or decorated intentions had come to fruition, not even after years and years of staring at them on our wall.

I remember making goals and just not accomplishing them, for one reason or another.

I remember feeling completely disillusioned with myself and my lack of results, tearing down my vision board, breaking my arrow and throwing it all in the bin. If I could set it all on fire I would have. I also remember declaring that from that day forward I would never waste money on personal development, rah rah seminars and goal setting type events ever again because they just didn’t work. That was around 2010.

Fast forward to 2018 and as per the title of this blog, I’ve changed my mind and am  going to make my first resolution in years.

That resolution is to live my truth.

To me, that means speaking the truth to myself (and others, even if it hurts) and honouring whatever that is.

It will involve learning to discern between the truth,  a lie, an excuse, an opinion, an ill formed belief, or a mask that hides the truth.

It will involve knowing my self and giving that self permission to be.

It will involve trust and listening to intuition.

It will involve taking action on things I might not usually do.

It will involve knowing what is important for the self (including failure, challenges and working through problems that feel unsolvable).

It will involve thinking of others,  of family, of society and the impact of my decisions on all of those. 

It’s a big resolution but one I feel I’m ready for.

The goal is to be integrous and congruent.  The goal is to evolve. The goal is to be my best self and to help others do the same. 

Alright 2018. Let’s do this.

 

 

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Merry Christmas (Plus our Christmas Letter) To You!

I’ve received Christmas letters each year for about 3 years now and as each year passes, I receive more and more Christmas letters.  I love them!!!

This totally inspired me to write one of our own but in my non-traditional way, I’m writing it on this blog and sending it to you electronically.

What is a Christmas letter for those of you who have never seen or received one?  It’s a one page letter that’s often enclosed within a Christmas card, telling you of all the highlights for the year, in the lives of the sender and the members of their family – a general update for the year.

It’s such a nice way to catch people up with what you’ve been up to, especially your nearest and dearest and the ones you don’t see often as you’re living far away from each other.

My only problem now is how to succinctly write it so it all fits in just one page.  Let’s see how I do!!  😉

And so without further ado, here is our Christmas letter to you:

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Dear family member / friend (or enter your name here),

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas from London!  Wherever you are in the world, we send with our message lots of love, hugs and warm wishes to keep your hearts filled for the coming year and beyond.

2017 has zoomed by very quickly for us and the whole year was one of many transitions, lots of healing and family.

Paris & Rome
We started the new year welcoming home our new furbabies, whom we named Paris and Rome.  We went from being childless to being parents to two beautiful, naughty and cheeky rabbits, overnight.

The transition was enormous and difficult.  All the additional chores, vets appointments, toilet training, feeding, cleaning, personalities and just having to constantly think of the wellbeing of two beings other than ourselves, who are dependent on ourselves, was a huge learning curve but being able to share in their joyfulness and zest for life has been very rewarding.

They’re also very therapeutic for Tony.  He comes home and sits, pats and chills out with them every day, perfect after a hard day’s work.

They’re now neutered, toilet trained, well behaved for the most part and will come when called by name (if in the mood) and they’re both trained to stand on 2 legs when you say “up”, take two steps forward while standing when you say “walk” and they spin around (on 4 legs)when you say “spin”!!  Paris also hops inside his hutch when you say “bed time” and when you say “are you ready to go to bed Rome Rome?  Come on then!” he’ll run to his litter so we can pick him up and put him back in the hutch.

❤  Argh!  They’re too cute!

Tony
After changes within management at the beginning of the year, Tony’s love for his job diminished to it becoming unbearable.  So, Tony quit his job at the end of May and we spent the next 3 or so months vegetating on the couch watching every season of every TV series known to man.  We also did multiple movie marathons to the point where I don’t know what any of the movies were called and they’ve all merged into each other!  Some we even watched twice because I could no longer recall if we’d watched them or not.

We definitely both regressed to our previous university student selves during that time but at least we got to enjoy lazing about on hot summer days and even enjoying a picnic now and then.

The long break also got Tony to refocus, get clarity of mind and search for something he really wanted to do and by the end of August, he found a job that he really enjoys with competent, intelligent and friendly people, challenges he likes taking on and pay he’s happy to get up for every morning.  For the detailed people out there – he’s now leading a project implementing a financial system worldwide, for a commercial installations and fittings company.

Me
I reduced my time on my online retail business to a half hour a day and focussed more on keeping the bunnies feeling safe, happy and healthy in their new home and Tony sane and upbeat during a time of uncertainty.  I also transitioned us from using a lot of chemical products to all natural.  I now make all our personal care and household cleaning products and even our perfumes.   We’re about 90% of the way to being all natural and chemical free!

Cutting down my focus on my online retail business was also a decision I made after a horrific customer ordeal where I was threatened with all sorts of defamation and prosecution over a period of time.  All unfounded but nevertheless stressful to deal with.

This event got me to re-evaluate where my time and energy are better spent and the rest of the year has been introspection, restrategising and personal development for me.  More so than usual!

Highlights
We finally got to visit the Archbishop of Canterbury’s gardens and library (Lambeth Palace Gardens) which are open to the public once a month (on a weekday) over the summer.  The palace and gardens included a 400 year old fig tree and tiny doors made for small people like me!!  That’s because people were as small as hobbits back then.  I would be considered tall for a woman in the 1800’s 🙂

We  did Hip Hop classes for a few months.  They were actually very fun and the first dance classes Tony has attended where he actually wanted to go back over and over.  They were challenging but a really fun way to do exercise and a great way to improve hand-eye coordination and cross-brain activity.   Plus we got to bounce along to some funky tunes.  I did feel my age though because the only song I knew was a Luther Vandross tune that one the teachers called “OLD Old School.”  Did he really have to say old twice?!  😛

Tony’s cousin and her children also graced us with their presence, visiting us from Hong Kong, during their school holidays and we enjoyed spending time with them including a lovely day in Cambridge, punting on the river, eating ice cream and getting a personal guided tour inside one of the colleges at Cambridge University.

I reconnected with my brother and we have spent once a week, every week, chatting and focussing on small changes on ourselves, to improve our emotional well being.  In healing modality terms, we spend each week clearing at least one thing.  The result has been subtle if you are looking from the outside but astronomical feeling it from the inside.

This year we’ve had friends move away (Simon & Ange) but we’ve had new ones arrive (Simon & Emily) and in more recent months we’ve had a visit from friends from Australia and we had lots of fun connecting and eating with them, rekindling old friendships and making new ones (Yuana, Jamie, Zarah).

Christmas & New Year
The bunnies are going to stay at a 5 star bunny hotel.  Crossed fingers the bunny sitter is everything she advertises to be.

Tony and I are off to the Philippines and Hong Kong.  Our first holiday in a year (if you don’t count the 3 month hiatus).

My Lola (how you say Grandma in Filipino) just passed this year and so I will visit her grave at the place where she raised me from age 6 months -4 yo.  I will also spend time with both sides of the family including my only living grandparent left,  my Ama (how you say Paternal Grandma in Chinese/Fukien), a strong, flamboyant woman whom I share a birthday with!  None of my extended family have ever met Tony and he’s never been to the Philippines so we have new adventures awaiting!

We are spending Christmas in Hong Kong with Tony’s grandmother who is 98/99 years young.  It will also be the first time in about 20 years where Tony and his other 3 male cousins who are of similar ages, will be together at the same place, at the same time.  They’ve all grown up in different continents but have somehow maintained a close bond with each other and their grandma.  To top this off, their spouses, siblings, all their children and their parents have also made the trip.  There will be a few family members who haven’t been able to make the trip but in any case, this will be a very special reunion.  A 4-generation family Christmas.

New Year’s will be spent reuniting with our furbabies in London, celebrating the 1 year anniversary of us all becoming a family.

And there it is – my very first (of many, I hope) Christmas letter.

Hope it finds you and your loved ones happy and healthy.

Wishing you a wonderful year ahead full of love, evolution, healing and wonderful memories in the making.

With lots of love,

Tony & Joy xox

Considering Travel Vlogging Again

Back in 2010 Tones and I documented by video, our trip to Tenerife.  It was our first travel vlog.

We had a lot of fun doing it but it took up so much time to edit and put together videos and pictures in a way that made sense for us, finding music that wasn’t copyrighted but appropriate, making sure place names were correct, ensuring the video was a decent time (try compacting 24 hours into 3 mins),  etc. etc. etc.

Also it was with 2010 technology and neither of us were really up to speed on any kind of complicated video and photo editing (nothing’s changed except maybe the technology now has made it much simpler).

When we went to LA at the end of that same year, we videoed a LOT of it thinking we could do it all again as per Tenerife but it just didn’t happen.  Tones and I started arguing over what to include and how to put it together.

We got one video done and it was all over.  We also got a little overambitious because we also wanted to vlog on outings we’d done like when we went out to Bray to eat at Heston’s pub (The Hind’s Head), other restaurants we went to and all sorts.

With each passing day / week, we became inundated with so much video footage it just became all too overwhelming.  Besides all that, as each week passed, our memories of the events became foggier and foggier.

We hardly ever fight but this video editing thing was making both of us really frustrated.  It was a whole lot of added work to everything we were already doing.  Then if I wanted to put things together one way and he wanted to do it another, we’d both start snapping at each other, loudly, and with lots of swearing.  Fun times.

We’d be spending hours on one video and then trying to get it into a format that would upload on YouTube properly.

There were times where we’d both be happy that we completed a video, go to upload it and the sounds disappeared or the sound quality would just be awful or somehow the sound and picture would be off timing.  Super frustrating.

And so we stopped.  Just like that.  Stopping was good for our marriage.

But you know what?  I still remember that Tenerife trip which we took over 7 years ago and if I don’t, I just have to look back at the videos we put together and it jogs many memories even when those moments weren’t on the video.

I don’t however, remember all the other holidays we’ve taken since then, in as much detail and you know what?  We never actually look back on any photos we’ve taken.  We barely post any up either.

So, now I’m thinking maybe we should try again.  Photos, videos, vlogs and blogs.  Let’s face it, the older we get, the more and more memories we have to hold in our brains.  Perhaps it’s not that we have bad memories but just so much stuff to sift through, that recall takes longer.

I’ve also become wary of how accurate my memory is.  Before it was like photographic and autographic, play by play, second by second recall.

Recently I realised that I no longer have a memory like an elephant.

Recently, I’ve even made up memories in my head like that time when I met someone… that I’d never actually met before and that time where I’d erased all memory of meeting someone who told me that I’d had multiple conversations with her many years ago.  OMG!!!

At least the video won’t lie about such things!!!

If we summarise it all and take the highlights of each trip, we can always just look back on the best bits without relying on our fading memories.  This is the modern day scrap book I guess.

Anyway, that’s my thought process on the vlogging… I do realise, it’s just adding to all the other digital rubbish out there for people to waste their times on… you know, the black hole that is Facebook and the Alice in Wonderland rabbit hole that is YouTube?  Where did the time go?  How did I get here?

But it’s not for them, it’s for us and our memories.

Hopefully, hopefully whatever we share will inspire others to
a) have fun
b) go travel
c) try new things
d) stay connected with us – it’s like a virtual catch up.
e) share experiences – like hey! I did that too when I was there!
f) inspire people to go and have the experience themselves – eg. that looks like fun, I’m going to go there next.

I wonder if Tones and I will start fighting again during the video editing.  I’m hoping 2017-18 technology would make it easier for us.

If we start vlogging and suddenly stop… you’ll know that we chose a calm marriage over editing our digital memories!

Think I’ll talk it over with him and see if he’d be keen to start this again.  There are many benefits even with all the frustrations.

Unfortunately, it’s not something I’m confident in doing on my own.  I’ve turned into my parents when they used to hand over all technology to my kid brother so he could program the VHS to tape their TV program.

Maybe it can be a new challenge for me to take in 2018!  Although I don’t really want to add anything else since I already told myself (and now I’m telling you) that I was going to learn to speak Chinese.

Well, advice on vlogging, which programs to use for video editing, recording equipment etc are all very welcome!!  I know things are quite expensive so I’m going to stick to our old digital camera for now and just aim for improving the technology over time.

Let’s see where this new adventure takes us hey?

Developing Trust

I wish that I could take a picture of him but every time I move, he sits up and opens his eyes to see what I am doing.

I attempted with the camera but when he hears the zoom sound, he sits up and checks what’s going on.  I tried with the phone but zooming on the phone camera is shite and results in a pixelated “WTF is that?” kind of picture.

One day, one day, I will get a good photo of him sleeping and I will show you.  It is the most sweetest thing ever!

It is an honour and a privilege to witness Paris Bunny sleeping because:
a) He is moody.  Sometimes he’ll let you touch him, sometimes he won’t.  Most times he won’t even let you look at him and he sneaks from box to box to keep his “out in the open” time minimal.
b) He is overly cautious.  If you place anything new in his area he will stare at it for ages and then creep up to it halfway and then run away.  He does this process over and over, getting closer and closer until he finally gets close enough and familiar enough with whatever it is to realise it’s not going to hurt him.
c) He is skittish.  Lots of times he’ll run away at the tiniest sound and hide in his box (which is in his hutch) aka his panic room.  In this box, he can’t see you, you can’t see him.  Best of all, you can’t touch him.  The box is small and dark and for him, safe and he stays in there a lot.  It’s his favourite to sleep.
d) Being a prey animal, bunnies tend to sleep with their eyes open so they can see danger coming.
e) To help them escape quickly and run if danger comes, they tend to sleep with all 4 feet firmly planted on the ground
f) They tend to keep their vulnerable parts protected (tummy to ground so you only ever see their back, head close to body so their neck isn’t too exposed).

So… when I glance over to see Paris lying down completely on his side, on his blanket, feet stretched out, exposing his white belly, gently breathing, laying in his hutch (outside of his box), there is an automatic “awwwwwww” that comes out of my heart and a real sense that “We’re doing something right.”

Afterall, a skittish, scaredy-cat bunny doesn’t end up that relaxed just ’cause.

Today, I witnessed him in a deep sleep.  His ears twitched and so did his legs (like a dog shakes its leg when presumably running in their dream).  His eyes were completely shut and then he started tilting his head back and moving his mouth around like he was mumbling or grinding his teeth.

If he tilted back any more he would have ended up rolling onto his back.  Of course, as soon as I moved to attempt a picture he lifted his head and opened his eyes.

Not wanting to disturb him to the point of making him get up and hide, I just sat there in silence and watched him.  Eventually, he closed his eyes again and put his head back down to sleep.  His sleeping position looks so much like that of a human baby on its side!

This is one picture I’ll have to patiently wait to capture.

Meanwhile, I am chuffed with being able to watch him.  He’s basically shown me that he feels safe enough to allow himself to be that vulnerable, in my presence.

He’s not quite like Rome who flops right by my feet if I’m sitting in his area or by my head when I lie down on the floor.  Paris still keeps a distance which is why I’m having so much trouble with zooming the camera!

But to allow himself a deep and blissful sleep even when I’m around does make me a proud furbaby parent.   We are developing trust.  He is happy, healthy, feels safe and relaxed.  That’s all I could want for my furbaby!

Holiday Planning with Bunnies

Ever since we got the bunnies, we haven’t been on  holiday.  Not once.  Day trips yes, but not a weekend trip.

There was only once that we were away from them during the night because we missed the last train home and we came home to eaten furniture and quite a few broken electrical cords.  It was very expensive to repair.  Never again.

This is the first time we haven’t gone on holiday in a whole year.

Last year, Tones was on a plane almost every month for work and on top of that, we managed to go to New York, Rome, Sydney, Las Vegas and Costa del Sol.

This year, we’ve been…. nowhere.  Well, Tones went to Dubai and New York for work but that’s it.

To tell you the truth, I haven’t noticed.  Not until now that I have to plan a holiday, have I noticed.

I guess this is what it’s like to have kids, kind of.  What I mean by that is that you’re so preoccupied with the daily activities, a whole year can go by without you noticing.

So, what’s it like planning holidays when you have bunnies?  Stressful.  First and foremost is finding a bunny-sitter of course!  No, you can’t just dump them with anyone.

I change their litters (4 of them, they have 2 litters each) daily.  We feed them and change their water, twice daily.  They have approx. 15 hrs run time, daily.  Albeit, much of it spent sleeping.  In that time, they get groomed, petted and just time spent with them so they don’t feel lonely.  Sometimes I feel like I don’t spend enough time with them.  I just wouldn’t expect any of our friends or neighbours to do what we do.

Enter, the bunny-sitter.  People paid to house, feed , water and spend time with your bunnies when you’re not around to do it.

Who knew it would be so hard to find one?

There are plenty of people advertising their services but after checking availability 2 months ahead of time, some were already booked out.

Some places you could tell were tiny and because we have 2 bunnies that have to be kept separate, we have to pay double for all accommodation.  So, if we pay for each of them to have double length hutches, then we’re effectively paying quadruple for both bunnies and even then, the space just seems so small.

We went to look at a “bunny hotel” yesterday and although very clean, the space was tiny.  Here I am feeling guilty that our bunnies don’t have enough run space and then I see up to 8 bunnies being kept in less space than we keep 1 of ours!

We just couldn’t bare to leave them like that for the time we’re away.  They’re not meant to be kept in a tiny box.  It’s meant to be a holiday, not a prison or punishment for them.

There seems to be a huge misconception that because bunnies are small then their area should be small too.  It’s so far from the truth.  They are tiny beings with huge amounts of energy and their space must reflect the size of their energy, not the size of their physical bodies.

So I’m going back and forth with various people attempting to find one that will give them the space as well as the love and care they will need while we’re away.

I told Tony that we weren’t allowed to book any place that was less than the quality of our own flat (for us).  It looks like these standards have translated to the bunnies’ welfare too.  We just cannot bare to put them in a space smaller than the space we’ve given them.  Not if we already consider the space we’ve given them, quite small.

Rome’s in the hallway for crying out loud.  It shouldn’t be that hard to give him that much room!  They’re supposed to be 5m squared.  He gets just about that incl the stairs and bathroom.  This is why I let him run in the bedroom sometimes, just so he gets more space every now and again.

Paris gets approx. 4.5m squared in the lounge plus the ability to jump on and off the couch but he’s not fenced in so if he wanted to, he could venture another few metres squared on his own and explore the dining/kitchen area.  He’s just a very lazy / non adventurous bunny (lucky for us and the furniture) who keeps to the 4.5m square and barely uses that.

Still, I’d prefer his space to be his choice ie if he wants to use it, it’s there.  If he doesn’t then at least we haven’t confined him to a tiny space and he’s just decided, on his own, that’s all he wants.

Did you know you could hire someone to come visit your home and so you can keep the bunnies at home and someone just comes to feed them?  It’s really expensive, more expensive than taking them to a full time bunny hotel/sitter and they only actually visit for 30mins at a time plus they have full access to your home when you’re not there.  I don’t think 30mins is enough to give the bunnies the affection they need plus I’m not into giving random people access to my home when I’m not around.  So nope, not going with that option.

Who knew finding a bunny sitter would be this hard?  Well, it’s either that or we’re just super picky / finicky parents.  My God…. can you imagine what we’d be like if we had human kids???!!!

So… I’m still searching.  I hope to find and book one soon otherwise I’ll be in a right panic.  They’re out there… somewhere and I will find them!!

Well Behaved Bunnies

It’s finally happened.  I can actually say my boys are well behaved.

What does that mean?

It means:
1.  No more banging and biting the cage wires during the night.
2.  No more peeing anywhere except their designated litters.
3.  No more bugging out each other.

There used to be a time when Paris would visit Rome next to the fence that divided their areas.  They would sit there and stare each other out.  Rome would flop and pretend how wonderful his life was.

Paris would wait and stare at him.  Rome being very impatient would always flinch first and poke his nose through the fence to bite it or to smell Paris.

Paris would sit and wait for this opportune time to bite Rome’s nose off.  He has managed with one bite to make Rome bleed a constant stream of blood from his nose.  I really thought the end of his nose (the little triangle that twitches) was going to fall off.

But… since that day, Paris hasn’t come to taunt Rome and Rome cannot go beyond the fence to taunt Paris, so it’s all been good and quiet.

They are also toilet trained.  Apart from the odd poo that flicks out of their litter when they jump out too quickly, or the wee that has run down an incline and ended up on their foot so they leave little wee foot prints on their towel/mat, 99% of the poo and wee is in their litter which means no more floor wiping and constant sweeping on my part.  YES!!

They are also neutered and their hormones have died down meaning they’re much more chilled out than when we first got them.

Routine!!  It’s the best thing.  They know they’re going to be let out in the morning so they just wait patiently until it happens!  If I’m late at getting them out of their cage, they actually go to sleep while waiting!  So no more banging to say “let me out!”

Also, to go to bed, all I have to say to Paris is “bed time” and he jumps into his hutch without a fuss, quite excitedly because he knows “bed time” also means he’s going to get fed.  Sometimes he even does a little binky dance where he binkies and jumps in and out of his hutch multiple times.  Really, he’s just trying to be where the food is, faster.

With Rome I just say “Ready to go to bed now, Rome?  Come on then!” and he’ll do a binky and then run behind / alongside me in the hallway, down the stairs to the bathroom, through my legs if I’m going too slow for him and straight into his litter.

One time I must have walked too slowly because he actually grunted at me while behind me as if to say “Beep Beep!  Get out of my way!” and then ran through my feet in a real rush getting to his litter long before I got down the stairs.  “C’mon!  I’m in my litter, hurry up!!”

He’s in the top bunk of the hutch so we need to carry him in.  He hates being picked up so, we lift him while he sits in his litter.  No need for chasing him, no need to stress him out with getting grabbed, lifted and manhandled every night.  Instead we’ve worked out our little travellator system.  It works really well!

He still defies me sometimes, well, only when he knows I’m angry at him and will make him do something he doesn’t want to do.   Specifically when he bites the base of the bed and my punishment every time is to kick him out of the bedroom.

I say “Rome!  Come here!”  He will only come half way and then he’ll sit there and groom himself while staring at me.  His eyes will also close half way like a death stare as if to say “You’re not the boss of me, I don’t have to do what you say.”

I stay patient with this because at this point, even though he thinks he’s got the upper hand, he’s not biting the bed anymore which was my goal.

Eventually, after multiple times of “Rome… Come here!”  in different intonations, even though he doesn’t want to, he will come and I will usher him out of the bedroom and close the door.

I think the biggest influencers for getting them to be this way were neutering and routine.   They’ve definitely made life a lot easier by being well behaved and obedient for the most part.

People say that for bunnies, Netherland Dwarfs are the closest in behaviour and personality to cats and dogs.  It’s why I chose this breed.

Tony uses them as therapy.  He’ll just sit quietly with them and pat them for AGES.  Rome will sit still and let Tony pat him for longer than 30mins at a time.

All in all, I’m really happy with the way it’s all turned out.  We’re really enjoying the bunnies and their company.  I don’t even mind the occasional cheekiness because it shows  personality and keeps us entertained.

 

Living a privileged life

This week’s blog is not going to be about the bunnies, yoga, physical health/ailments, food or even DIY natural products and superfood smoothies.  Nope, this week I’m going to talk about wealth.

I was going through this document, the annual Global Wealth Report 2017 because I read an article that said 1% of all adults in the world owned over 50% of global household wealth and I just wanted to understand how this happens.

You’ve heard it before, “The rich are getting richer, the poor are getting poorer.” and now…. the 1% are worth 50% of the global population’s net worth put together.

Yes it’s the great headline about the disparity between rich and poor, designed to conjure up all sorts of emotions around “It’s not fair!”

But life isn’t fair.  It never was and it never will be.  We each come to this world with our own advantages and disadvantages whether they’re physical, mental, emotional or monetary and we arrive with any combination and number of those.

The question is, how do we deal with the cards we’ve been given?  And… are our cards really that bad?  How do we make good out of what we’ve got?  How well do we use the advantage we’ve been given?

It reminds me of this exercise on understanding privilege.

So back to this report…. the thing that I couldn’t get past when looking through the report was that 91% of the world adult population (ie does not count the entire world population because children are not included) has a net worth of less than $100K (USD) per adult.

Upon reading this, I was incredulous.  I really couldn’t understand how so many people had so little.

Since this teacher’s exercise on his $100 race, was so enlightening, I decided to do the same process for wealth:

  1. Take 2 steps forward if you don’t live in a third world country.

Source:  https://www.worlddata.info/average-income.php

These are average YEARLY incomes in USD.

If you were in Burma, it would take you 100 years to earn $100,000 USD.

People in third world countries have shorter life expectancy (40 years vs 80 years in the first world).  That means, it will take them 2.5 life times to earn $100K and many more years to save it!

2.  Take 2 steps forward if you don’t live in a second world country.

Adults in second world countries aren’t much better, earning about USD $2,500-$5,000 per year.

Just on earning potential alone, the entire second and third world population is left behind.  The developing world countries make up about 80% of the global population.  This now leaves only 20% of adults, all living in first world countries, in the lead.

Still think your life is unfair?

3.    Take 2 steps forward if you are 30yo or older.

Adults just coming of age at 18 would not automatically have $100K and will take time to earn, save and invest it.

4.  Take 2 steps forward if you have received an inheritance or help from parents over $25K.

Many people can make the $100K on their own but how much easier is it to be given a little step up?  You know, to be able to stand on the shoulders of those who stood before you?

5.  Take 2 steps forward if you haven’t gone through a divorce.

Not only do you split your accumulated wealth into 2 with a divorce, there’s the cost of lawyers and uneven splits of wealth depending on how many children you have, whether they’re still minors and who’s taken custody of them and how angry your partner is…

Divorce has been the financial demise of many a person.  Some people recover from it, some people don’t.

6.  Take 2 steps forward if you haven’t lost your money in a failed business.

You’ve heard those stats right?
80% of entrepreneurs fail within 18 months of starting a business.
50% of businesses fail within 5 years.

Whether or not those stats are accurate, businesses can be big financial risks that more often than not, don’t work.

Similar to marriages, some people just don’t learn and risk it all more than a few times.

7.  Take 2 steps forward if you’re not yet in retirement.

Retirement eats away at your nest egg.  If most of it is savings and not in high yield investments that will cover your living and lifestyle expenses plus inflation year on year, the longer you live, the less you’ll have.

8.  Take 2 steps forward for every $10K over $50K you earn per year.  So eg.  if you earn $60K, you’ll take 2 steps, earn $70K, you take 4 steps etc.

Simple logic, assuming you save proportionately the same amount of your income, you will get to $100K a lot faster if you earn more.

9.  Take 2 steps forward if you don’t have any pets or children.

Let’s face it, kids cost money and most pets of the privileged are treated just like kids.

10.  Take 2 steps forward if you’ve learned how to save and invest your money wisely.

And here it is, how only 9% of the adults of the world make it over $100K in net worth and stay there.  If you keep going with this exercise, that’s how you separate the more privileged of the already privileged.

This is where I lose my incredulity and get smacked in the face with what reality is like for the rest of the world and find some humility and gratitude for my own life and where I am.

Especially in those times where we think we have it rough, we need a little reminder of just how fortunate we actually are.

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