Tag Archives: advice

Something I wish I could buy from vending machines

by laughlin

This post was in response to a prompt entitled  from Plinky.com. I discovered the site recently and decided to give it a try!

I wish vending machines offered advice. Can you imagine that? Going up to a complete stranger to whom you pay a dollar to listen to your problems and give his/her thoughts. Mind you, I can very well see the many ways this idea would go wrong.

They way I envision this would be similar to the carnival fortune-teller machines that you may have seen in television shows. An advice vending machine would look like a booth and have a person inside whom would just sit and listen to your problem then offer you some (hopefully) useful words of wisdom.

The first and biggest problem with this is that the advice-giver may not give the kind of advice you want. When people express their problems to others, they generally do so for one of two reasons: they have a lot of thoughts on their mind that they just want to say out loud or they have thought so hard/long they want someone else to help them come to a conclusion.

For me, receiving advice means getting a new perspective. I want a person to tell me not what I want to hear, but another way to interpret or understand my thoughts. I dislike it most when people just tell me what I should think, using phrases like “Well, it happens to everybody. Don’t worry about it.”

I believe the reason I felt compelled to suggest an advice dispenser in response to this prompt was because good advice doesn’t come easily. How great would it be to have the convenience of advice for your greatest worries and thoughts at the insertion of a few coins? Maybe this occurred to me because I have yet to find someone whom I think gives me really good advice (besides my mother). The people I choose to ask for advice from vary depending on the nature of the situation, but I think what I’m looking for is someone I can consult universally about anything that bothers me.

…Does such a person even exist?

Hmm. I need to give my mom a call tomorrow.

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Why I will (hopefully) have a successful career

I am inspired this week by a man known as Larry Smith. Smith works primarily as an economics professor at the University of Waterloo. On Monday, he told a room of 100 hundred other students, including myself, why you will fail to have a great career. He then told us how to fix it.

I mean really, have you ever seen a gravestone say “Here lies a terrible parent, an untrustworthy friend, and an unfaithful spouse?”

The main point of his presentation was to follow your passion, or else you will die as wasted potential. He urged us to do something that will make our life worth living, and not just about making a living. One thing I really enjoyed about Smith’s talk was how down-to-earth he was. His presentation was essentially an expansion of the TED talk he had presented for TEDxUW, which I felt was too short to do him justice. He was very much aware of the common issues students—and people in general—have when they want to pursue a job based on passion: the risk , the loss of resolve, and the hardships of actually making a living off that passion.

by nogiba

the Risk

For students such as I who are in the middle/late stage of their first university degree, it can be a frightening thing to think about what will happen to our future. Like many in post-secondary institutions, I chose my program not for passion but for the guarantee of a safe living (well even then, I can’t say it’s a guarantee since I haven’t actually graduated yet, heh). During the Q&A portion of the talk, a student raised his concern over the dissociation between his passion and his current program of study. Smith responded with two major points: sacrifices must be made, unconventional connections always exist. Even if you already have a well-paying job or have already graduated, if you are feeling dissatisfied with your career and you have a passion so strong you want to quit your job to fulfill it, you will find a way. It will be at that point that your creativity, resourcefulness, and determination will be your best friends. How will you know if your passion is strong enough?

Oh, you’ll know. And if you don’t know, it means you’ve never felt it. Once it hits you, you’ll know you have your passion.

Continue reading

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How to Stop Being Afraid of Romantic Relationships

For many, finding that perfect someone is important. As humans we are born social beings keen to form all sorts of relationships with the people we meet. But being afraid of a romantic relationship is not something to be ashamed of. It happens, and it’s understandable.

Here are things to consider to help you overcome this obstacle.

1. Identify the cause of your fear. Can you think back to when you first decided you were afraid of a relationship? Was it watching your parents fight? Was it seeing the aftermath of a bad relationship?

2. Being afraid of a relationship DOES NOT mean there is something wrong with you. Inviting another person into your world is a big thing. It’s natural to be scared of such a change to your personal life.#  Be confident in yourself. If you truly want a relationship, you will be able to find one. But do not look down on yourself because you are afraid. Everyone is afraid of change.

3. Don’t be impatient. Look not for a partner for the sake of having a partner. There is a distinct difference between finding a partner and finding someone whom you wish would become your partner. That is, don’t look for a relationship because you’re the last one among your friends to have one, or look for one because you think at this age you should’ve at least had some dating experience. That’s not true. Love should blossom from the connection that forms when you meet that someone, not because they answered your ad in the newspaper (albeit it’s not as if that doesn’t work).

4. Don’t feel depressed. Fear is a difficult thing to overcome, and it won’t be overcome easily. Find someone to talk to about your fears, someone who you see as a mentor and are comfortable talking with.

5. Don’t force yourself. If you don’t feel ready for a relationship and someone is pressuring you into one, tell them your fears. If they are truly someone worthwhile they will understand and wait. Otherwise…

6. When you do start that first relationship, start it with someone who is aware of your fear. Let them know your feelings. Set the line before it can be crossed. Make it clear to your partner what you are and are not comfortable with.

7. Have faith. Don’t give up if you feel it’s taking too long to overcome your fear. Don’t give in when your new partner is frustrated with your fear. Don’t expect a fairy tale ending, but work your best to communicate and compromise.

(This post is actually one that I wrote for Wikihow.com, but I thought the information would be useful for a lot of people, thus I’m sharing it here on WordPress as well. Thanks to contributions from the  Wikihow community for helping me perfect this article.)

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