Summary – Associate with emotion and some practice
One of the biggest mystery of life is this – Let say tomorrow we are going for a trip oversea and we have to wake up at least 6 am just to get that flight. And somehow, we manage to wake up precisely at 6 am, not a minute sooner or later.

Have you had such experience?

This will happen almost everytime we are excited about waking up the next day. For example, first day at a job, or marriage. A theory suggested to explain this is that we have an internal clock built in to our subconcious mind. That will explain the accuracy of waking up time for some people, or the sudden nervousness when you forget an important thing to be done.

I have no proof on the theory, but I really believe that internal clock does exist. And wouldn’t it be a waste if we do not make use of this amazing gift.

Here’s some exercise that you can do immediately to harness the power of your internal clock.

1) Be insanely excited about waking up
The secret to waking up exactly at the specific time you wanted is actually making use of your emotion.

How many time do you able to wake up early when you know there’s something fun for you to do. Or maybe you are nervous about that first date, or when you know you will be called up by your boss for some big mistake you’ve done. Every one of these has one thing in common. You go to bed with an emotion associated to your future waking up.

If you go to bed, with an intense feeling about waking up tomorrow at 6am, you will definitely wake up at 6 am. Try it.

2) Guess the time without using any clue
This is a training I come up with to use the internal clock. At any time of the day, I will try to guess the time. It must not be a wild guess, you must try to search for the answer in you.

Another rule you must abide is that you must not make a calculated guess. An example of calculated guess is as such “Peter always leave the office at 1pm, so I know now is about 1.30pm”. Try to avoid this kind of analysis just to guess the time. In the end we want to train ourselves to be able to rely on the accuracy of our internal clock.

3) Play with your timer.
There’s one in your cellphone right? When you have nothing to do, play with it. Set it at 1 minute, and without counting the seconds in your mind, try to guess when will your 1 minute will be up. Maybe do a 10 seconds countdown.

With practice, you will be able to tell without looking at your watch, how long is 1 minute.

Advantages of a trained internal clock:

  • You will be able to wake up anytime you want.
  • You will be able to take power nap (5 minutes nap that will energize you back).
  • No more waking up at random hours.
  • You will appreciate the time you have better.
  • A giant leap in your time management skill.
  • A more discipline you.
  • You can now sell your watch.

Conclusion – I truly believe there’s so much more mystery of our body that we still haven’t figure out. By doing this exercise, hopefully we will be one step closer to better understanding them.

– I wonder –
Do you believe in internal clock? When is your last time waking up exactly at the time you wanted?

———– Personal Note ———-
When I was a child, I was told that ghost will appear every night at 2 am. Thanks to my internal clock, I woke up every night exactly at 2 am. And man, I was so frightened at the time. I thought it was the ghost that woke me up since it is exactly 2 am. 🙂

Of course there are no ghost.

Photo credit – Yves Lorson

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Robin Hood

Summary – Everyone can [insert verb], but only we do it with added value
Let me start with a very cliche introduction. There are basically millions of people in the world. Everyone of them think that they are one very unique person and that nobody can come close to become as unique as them. However, the truth is unless you really are the president of the world fighting aliens off the planet, you really are nobody in the eye of the world. So What makes you different?

I told you it’s going to be cliche.

Now locally, you have a job, you wake up everyday, go to work, come back from work, maybe do some charity work, spend time with family, and go to bed. What makes you different from other guys who goes exactly the same routine?

The only way we can become more than just a person who go to and come back from work is by adding value to everything we do in our life.

Example 1 – Everyone can walk. But if we are making new friends with every walk we took, we are adding value to walking. Maybe try to walk a different route and try another barber just to find new faces.

Example 2 – Everyone can talk. But if we are spending half a day just to talk about which one is cooler – batman or superman, it will not add any value to the 12 hour spent. Try to be very selective of what you speak. Not to the extent you are not speaking at all, just don’t waste it on worthless action. Add value to your conversation by making a good point, or asking question that will actually make you more knowledgable.

Example 3 – Everyone can also blog. But if you make a post with one line quote from somebody famous and that’s it, people will most probably get more value from google. Try to give your opinion on the matter. That’s what blog is all about anyway.

Conclusion – Everyone can [insert a verb here], but a person who will be remembered in history will always add value to it.

We are not going to be the most popular person on the planet just by doing this. But if you look at all the legends, this is one thing that they have in common. They add value. And we have to start somewhere.

– I wonder –
Who is the first person that come to mind when talking about adding value?
Strangely the name Robin Hood comes to mine. He added value to stealing (not that I’m promoting such behaviour though)

———- Personal Note ———-
I once dreamt of becoming a walking encyclopaedia. I don’t actually bought one. I just read them at the library taking notes on the subject. You know how this will end. In just 3 days, I gave up the project. There’s just so much information and there’s so many other thing I can do with my time. Also there’s google 🙂

Photo Credit –Jo Jakeman

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Summary – For more impact, change your abstract thoughts to materialistic ones
Have you ever had that feeling like you already know all the answers to life. You are getting tired actually of it. You know that to get good grade, you need to study smart, or for you to save some money, you need motivation and discipline etc.

We seem to know everything there is to know on how to succeed in life, but somehow we are not able to achieve what we want. Why do you think this happen. I have a theory that may explain this mystery.

The Problem
The problem with a lot of words when we are thinking is that they are most of the time very abstract. Some examples are like the word discipline, motivation, negativity, willpower, success etc.

Take a look at this example – “I need to have strong willpower to be motivated to study”. Try repeating this sentence in your mind. Do you feel the urge to be motivated? or does you willpower strengthen? I don’t know about you but it’s not really working to me. Why? Because I can never actually see those abstract words.

The Solution
This is what I’m suggesting. Try to use real image to get that impact.

If for example you want to improve your discipline to prevent you from spending your saving money. An old method to that is by saying this in our mind – “I need to be very strict and forbid myself from using the saving money.” This is very abstract. Try to avoid this type of statement when thinking.

You should say things like “That $300 actually belong to an old man who will eat nothing for a month if I use the money. How can I take from an old man..”. Can you feel the guilt that comes with the words?

When we speak out our thought using real things / scenario, we will be able to associate the feeling to our thought. Hence more impact.

That old man is actually our futureself, who will have to depend on that money for living. But don’t tell yourself that 🙂

Other examples to help further clarify is a person who is always having trouble to finish his daily job. He has learnt all the powerful tools of productivity to motivate him to finish his job, but somehow he still doesn’t have the will for it.

What he should do is maybe to count how many task he actually has on his table. If there are 20 task unfinished, he should go out and get 20 bricks (yes, bricks) and pile it up in front of his table. Every morning, he should recount his task and change the number of bricks accordingly.

When he can see (very visually) how the bricks is increasingly becoming a mess, he will automatically have the motivation to finish the job. I know I will try my best to clear the bricks off my office.

– I wonder –
If you try that piling bricks technique, do you think you will have the motivation to finish your work?

————- Personal Note ————
Welcome to all readers from Lifehack. Hopefully you will find the blog useful. Feel free to browse the many topics presented here. You have unlimited access to them 🙂

Just a quick introduction, Lesson In Life is basically a collection of tips and lesson I learnt and develop through out my life. More information about the blog and myself in the About Page.

A better way to know what the blog is all about is by reading a few of LessonInLife’s best post in the sidebar. I love to hear your thought on the topic discussed.

Lastly – thanks for stopping by. If you’d like to get in touch feel free to shoot me an email via my Contact Form.

Photo Credit – Rayphua

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two way

Summary – Compromise to the greater good is truly human’s best quality

There is a saying in Malay – “Ditelan mati mak, Diluahkan mati bapak”. Roughly translated – “Swallow, and your mother will die, Spit it out and your father will die, choose.” Yes, I know.. brutal.

It’s very easy to make a decision when the only one who will be affected is you. But, the task is hundreds time harder when a few people will be affected by your decision. You can make the decision, but a lot of people might get hurt.

I am actually now is exactly in this tight spot. Where everything I do will hurt either party.

Two of my colleague (very close friend to me) are supposed to do one job. I’m not going to bore you with the details of the job but suffice to say that both of them will have to work together in this one.

The problem is, colleague A (which is more senior than B) has his own way of doing thing. When he say “do this way”, he wants no objection from other people. Colleague B however has another idea to do the project.

I’ve reviewed both methods and I find them both equally efficient. Both methods will get the work done. If you have to decide on which equally efficient methods to use, what would you do?

Seniority wise, colleague A’s plan should be used. But colleague B’s plan is also just as flawless that I don’t know what reason to give if I choose colleague A’s plan. He will be very demotivated when his plan not used, and even more when he is confident that he is just as right.

The solution – This is what I do
1) Be very sure which is better
In the end, the only thing that matters is whether or not the job can be perfectly done. The best method that will do this should automatically be chosen irregardless of where it is from.

2) Approach the more understanding
If for some weird case that both methods are equally succesful, I will have to approach the more understanding person. In this specific case – colleague B. I have to describe to him the whole problem. And convince him to put the objective of the project first before everything else.

He has every reason to feel unappreciated, but the truth is we are all here to finish the job. And that’s what we are supposed to do. Everyone should be proffesional and put emotion aside to finish the job.

3) Avoid putting these two together in future job
One is too proud of himself that he no longer compromise with others, and another is equally good but is being demotivated day in day out. Both will do better if put in separate group in the future.

– I wonder –
Have you ever had any difficult choices to decide? How do you choose?

Photo Credit – Dano

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