Category Archives: Friends

“Male Superiority/Inferiority within Relationships”

  1. My friend asked me, “What intimidates you from the opposite sex?”

    • I responded with, “What do you mean what intimidates me?”

    • He elaborated, “What I mean is what is one thing that scares you, turns you off, has you packing your bags and running away from the opposite sex?”

    • I replied, “Nothing really.  I don’t get intimidated that easily.  Why should I be scared of a girl?”

  2. Friend, “Oh please.  Everyone is intimidated by something.  Especially when it comes from the opposite sex.”

    • Me,  “Okay.  Give me an example to work with.  What intimidates you?”

    • Friend, “Well for me, I take pride over the fact that I’m smart.  I enjoy exuding my intelligence especially when it comes to ladies.  The same way that a male peacock shows off it’s tail to attract a mate, I enjoy showing off my brain muscle to attract a female mate.”

  3. Me, “So you would be offended if a girl out-smarted you?”

    • Friend, “I wouldn’t be offended.  I just wouldn’t date her.”

    • Me, “That sounds like a silly reason to turn down a girl.”

    • Friend, “It sounds silly because you don’t take pride in being clever around the ladies.  I do.  It’s important that I can charm the opposite sex with my mind.”

  4. Me, “Is there anyone in your life that fits this category?”

    • Friend, “Do you remember my ex Becky?  Smart as hell.  I was actually attracted to her because she was a smart gal.  I saw it as a challenge to prove myself superior to her.”

    • Me, “Of course.  She was an honor student in college.  She’s a doctor now.  Oh yeah, what happened to you guys?”

    • Friend, “This is between us two ok?  But the reason it didn’t work out between us is because I started feeling inferior to her.  She did great in school and I couldn’t keep up with her.  I actually had to turn to her for help with my projects.  That’s when we started to drift apart.”

  5. Me, “Dude, you have serious relationship problems.”

    • Friend, “Hey, we are all wired a little different.  I can’t help it if this is how my mind works.”

    • Me, “So based on what you just said, I assume that your current girlfriend Jacky isn’t book smart?”

    • Friend, “She’s an art major.  She hates every single class except for art.  She’s having trouble with those classes, but thanks to my help she’s gonna pass them all.  In her eyes, I’m practically her hero.”

  6. Me, “Maybe that’s why it couldn’t work out with Becky, she didn’t look up to you.”

    • Friend, “That’s another way of saying it.  I need someone to see me as their knight in shining armor.”

    • Me, “Well, now that you’ve put it that way, most guys are like that.”

    • Friend, “But not everyone needs to be the smart one in the relationship.”

    • Me, “Right.  Some guys spend all their time in the gym, so they love it when girls admire their body.  Other guys love telling stories, so they appreciate a girl who enjoys his story.  And then we have guys who take pride in fixing and building, who glow when their wives praise them a job well done.”

  7. Friend, “So now that we’ve come full circle.  You want to answer my original question?”

    • Me,  “Haha, well I had no idea what you were talking about initially.  Now I do.”

    • Friend, “I can’t help it that you’re so slow.”

    • Me, “Seeing that I’m so slow, for sure I don’t care if a girl is smarter than me.  I wouldn’t mind if she is makes more money than me, has a better body, or is more sociable than I am.”

    • Friend, “I should send all heart-broken female friends to you.  You’ll never turn anyone away.”

  8. Me, “There is this one thing though.  I don’t think I could be in a relationship with a girl who is a better photographer than me.”

    • Friend, “Of course, I should’ve guessed that.  You are so passionate about photography.”

    • Me, “I wouldn’t know what’d I do if my next girlfriend took better pictures than me.  I mean, could you imagine someone who criticizes every shot you took because she knows she can take a shot that’s better than yours?  That would drive me crazy.”

    • Friend, “Join the club my friend.”
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What You Do With Money Reveals Who You Are

Me and my cousin TA were diving into various monetary topics such as tipping, spending habits, and power control issues during my birthday outing.  We briefly touched on the topic what you do with money reveals who you are.  I had some more alone time and this is what I came up with.

  1. For people who work, money serves as a counter of how much time, energy, and other sacrifices they you have accumulated in the past.  Money is usually used to fulfill their needs.

  2. For some workers, work is meaningful and therefore money serves as a bonus to what they inherently enjoy doing.  There are doctors out there who enjoy helping others so much that they would still stick with the profession, even if their salary is halved.  They are in it because of the meaningful work, money is secondary.  Of course, there are those who would change profession if they knew they would only be making half.

  3. For others, where passion is absent from work, money serves as an investment into a better or different future.  People who work meaningless hours at the local gas station, in hopes of saving up and one day starting their own restaurant belong to this category.  They put up with things they don’t enjoy now, so one day they can be able to do what they enjoy.

  4. Some people put up with work so others around them can reap the benefits of having stable income to support their lives.  Most parents who start out with nothing, don’t have a choice in what they want to do.  They put up with doing dirty, physically straining, low-paying jobs that no one else wants.  All the time they wasted on doing something they don’t enjoy is actually an investment into the future of their own kids.

  5. People who gamble have the belief that they can multiply the amount of money they have.  No one walks into a casino thinking that they will probably lose all the cash they brought.  There is even the chance that they will lose even more than what they intended to gamble with.  For one person to walk as a winner, there will probably be multiple others that must walk out as the loser.  Everyone wants to be the winner, yet the number of people who lose always outnumbers the number of people who lose.  For some reason, they are unconscious to this.

  6. People who are handed money, don’t see meaning in the things they buy.  With someone else’s money, they can buy anything they want.  Anything they want is easily thrown away because it was so easily attained.  There is no need to cherish or be grateful for something that they gave up nothing for.  If they lose something, they can always buy another one without putting out anything.  They only need to put out their hand and a rich mom or dad will provide more money.

  7. People who take other’s money, are extremely short-sighted.  They only see what they could do with that money.  When you take someone else’s money, its like unleashing a demon that will haunt you.  People will investigate, they will become suspicious of you, they will want to know the truth.  They will be relentless, they will demand justice, and they will raise their guard.  They won’t forget.  If you take money and it becomes public knowledge, you have essentially closed all doors to a bright future.

  8. People who borrow another’s money and return it, are opportunists.  They see borrowing money as an opportunity to help them out of a rut.  They see it as an opportunity to take advantage of a prosperous business endeavor.  Regardless, of whether the borrowed money serves it’s purpose or not, returning it strengthens the relationship between you and the lender.  Whether it be a bank or a rich relative, when you own up to what you say, you build credit for the future.  A friend is more likely to let you borrow $1,000 down the road, when in the past you have been good on repaying the $500 you owed them.

  9. People who borrow another’s money and don’t return it, are slowly burning down all the bridges in their life.  Every single time you borrow someone’s money and don’t return it, you have closed off that person from your life.  You don’t want to see them, because you don’t have any money to pay them back.  Every time you do see each other, it’s the one thing that will be on top of everyone’s mind.  Conversations may start on any topic, but it will always end on “where’s the money you promised to pay back?”  Your relationship has been put on hold until you can pay them back.  No meaningful conversations, life experiences, or memories will be created between you two until you have fulfilled your promise.

  10. People who lend out money to help others, transforms the lending process into a charitable act.  They realize that their money does more good in the hands of others as opposed to having the money just sit there in the bank.  They enjoy lives of plenty and prosperity, and wish the same outcome to all those around them.  They hope that with some extra cash, you can start walking down the path of your own dreams.

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FB Status Update: Auto-Correct Fail

Emailing my friend about my work schedule tomorrow.

Wanted to say “I’m shooting all over fort worth tomorrow.”

Instead it types “Im shitting all over fort worth tomorrow.“

Thanks auto correct for making me sound like I have a serious digestive problem.

Perhaps I should just carry a toilet paper around with me instead of my camera.

That’ll definitely get my clients to take my work more seriously.

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FB Status Update: Started From the Bottom, Now I’m Here

Dad told me recently, “Taking pictures is a hobby. You need to stop bumming around and get your ducks in a row.”

What this usually means is he thinks photography is a dead end job with no prestige and honor. I should go back to being a teacher or engineer. Or maybe go back to school to be a doctor.

Friend told me recently, “You can’t make a living off of photography. It’s something you do on the side, after you have a career in something else.”

Which is true, because most of the well-known wedding/event photographers I know, do weddings on the side. They have a tax firm, electronic store, or cell phone service business that they run on the weekdays.

My Aunt told me, “Here’s a business loan for your photography business. You have to promise me that within one year, if things don’t go well you have to move onto something more stable.”

I only got 40 more days until my year is up.



People were getting to me and I was letting them get to me. I wasn’t going to give up photography up completely, but perhaps I would be able to sustain my photography passion with a stable income like librarian or computer lab manager.

It didn’t matter much what I did during the week, as long as during the weekends, I got to do what I loved the most.

Perhaps everyone was right all along. Perhaps last year was a waste. Perhaps I shouldn’t have put my life on hold and poured everything into photography.



Last Wednesday, replied to Craigslist post. Friday got called in interview. Left interview as a full-time architectural photographer with pay comparable to a full-time teacher.

Literally, had tears falling from my eyes because I was so happy. It felt like I just won the lottery. Similar to waking up from a beautiful dream only to realize that it wasn’t just a dream, it’s reality now.

Now, I don’t need to work, save money, and then to go spend it on something I truly love. I can do something I truly love, save money, and then chill until I can do something I truly love again. This is truly my dream job.



I appreciate all the friends and family who have supported me along the way. Friends critiquing my work. Family referring photography business to me. Inspiration and creativity were allowed to flourish with companions like you guys.

At the same time, I got nothing but love for my dad, aunt, and friend. They told me what they knew to be true. It was there own way of showing me love. Full-time photographers are unheard of. Well at least now, they can say they know one full-time photographer.

No photography courses/classes. No photography degrees/certificates. Learning it the hard way by just doing it. Definitely helped to have so many experienced photographers around me to give me tips/advice. Couldn’t have done it without them.



Started from the bottom, now I’m here.

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Dissecting “Haters Everywhere”

I recently posted this on my facebook status:

*Haters Everywhere*

Perhaps the reason why people hate us so much is they can’t stand staring into the intense light we emit.

Therefore, whenever someone hates on us, take it as a compliment.

Their hate is an acknowledgment of how awesome you are.

No lie.



It can be extremely discouraging to find out that people hate on us.

Usually, we don’t even know why they’re hating on us. We have no clue what we did.

Sometimes we find out the reason, and we think it’s silly or ridiculous.

People just have so much free time that they spend it luxuriously on hating us.



This bothers a lot of people. They feel powerless because they can’t change the perception of others.

Sometimes when we try to get others to like us, they hate us even more.

It can be extremely discouraging knowing that there is hate in the world and you can’t do anything about it.

Well there is something that you can do about all the hate in the world.



You can turn hate into a good thing.

Instead of viewing it as a bad thing and wanting it to go away, turn it into a good thing so that when it happens you are not bothered by it.

You actually welcome hate, because now instead of bringing you down, it brings you up.

That’s what my status updates tries to convey to the reader.



People hate on you because you are awesome.

More hate means that you are more awesome.

Therefore, regardless of love or hate you always end up feeling awesome.

You can’t control how others treat you, but you can control how you respond to love and hate.



The trick to living a happy life is turning all bad situations into good ones.

If we can find the silver lining in all bad situations, suddenly our life doesn’t seem so bleak.

We look deep under the surface, instead of judging immediately by the appearance of something that it is bad.

Life can potentially diverge into a million possibilities, just because we are open to it being more than what it seems.

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Fun Time Vs Boring Time

What makes the difference between having fun and being bored?

I recently went to an event with a friend.

We were both photographers.

Yet, we had two different experiences.



If you ask him, whether he had a good time or not?

He would say he was bored out of his mind.

If you ask me, the same question.

I would say I enjoyed the event very much.



The difference between me and him lies in how we spent our time.

I was very involved with all the activities.

I volunteered my time, I took charge of certain projects, I took pics as much as I could.

He took a laid back stance, doing as little as possible even when it came to taking pictures.



It almost felt like he was waiting for life to happen to him.

He was sitting at the dinner table waiting for someone to set the table and feed him.

He expected to be entertained and didn’t want to put in any effort.

His expectations were too high, so he was disappointed.



For me time went by really quick due to all the activities I was a part of.

I was in the kitchen getting down and dirty trying to come up with dishes for my guest.

I wanted to contribute to the entertainment and put out as much as I could.

My expectations were low, so even if I didn’t get much out of it, I was still content.



When you wait for life to happen, you are at the mercy of life.

If there’s nothing happening in life, there’s nothing happening with you.

Life is boring when you have to wait for things to happen.

But waiting for things to happen is a conscious choice that you make.



If you wanted to, you could make things happen in life.

You could be proactive and seek to make life more eventful.

As a result, you are making things happen in life for yourself and others.

Instead of waiting in uncertainty for things to happen, you act knowing for certain that things will happen.



A fun time or a boring time depends on whether you want to be the driver or the passenger.

Are you going to allow someone else to drive you around hoping it’s what you want.

Or are you going to take the steering wheel and take everyone for the ride of their life.

A boring time is something that you let happen to you, while a fun time is something that you must make happen for you and/or others.

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Most Valuable Substance on Earth

The most valuable substance can’t be seen, touched, tasted, smelled, or heard.

Its what everyone has, but no one ever has enough of it.

It’s everywhere you go, yet no where to be found.

It grows in value, only if you learn how to appreciate it.

What could it possibly be?



The most valuable substance on earth is space.

When you buy a house, you are really buying space.

Would you want a house that is already occupied? No, why would I want a house where strangers are in my space.

Would you want a house that doesn’t have a kitchen? No, I need space to cook for my children.

A house is appealing only as long as it serves its function, which is to provide empty space for you to live comfortably.



When you buy a glass cup, you are solely interested in the space inside.

The space inside the cup is what makes it functional.

Would anyone ever buy a cup that is solid glass? I’m buying the cup to drink from, but if it’s solid how can the piece of glass hold the water now?

Glass cups are useful only if it is hollow. The material the cup is made out of is inconsequential.

As long as the cup has space to contain fluids, it can be made out of steel, plastic, or paper.



Every year, millions of dollars are invested into Superbowl ads. But what really is being bought is space.

All of America is tuned into this channel, therefore I will sell you this slot of 30 secs for 56 million dollars.

You can fill that space with anything you think will gain the attention of your viewers. You need to come up with even more money to create something catchy.

Would anyone every buy a slot in the program, if it’s already filled? No, why would I buy a space that already has someone else’s commercial in it.

I put millions on the table, solely so I have that space in the programming to myself. I want that space to be empty, so I can fill it with what I want.



When it comes down to personal space, this is where many of us get stuck.

We don’t know how to manage our own personal space.

We don’t know how to create our own space.

The problem with most of is we don’t have any space at all.

Yet space is the most important thing in our possession.



When our space is filled with events and tasks, we quickly run out of time.

The only way to create space in our schedule is to say no.

We can’t be everywhere doing everything, so we have to say no.

Saying no, frees up our schedule and slowly restores space.

Say no enough times and suddenly you have your life back.



Most of us aspire to do great things, but where we fall short is we don’t make space for those things to happen.

If you want to pursue your passion of singing, you won’t get very far if you don’t make space for it.

Many people try to squeeze their new goal or new dreams into their already existing busy life.

They expect to keep all that they have now in addition to what may come through the realization of their dream.

The materialization of a goal requires space in your schedule for it to happen.



Stress is caused by our brains constantly being bombarded by thoughts.

“I hate work. Why did she lie to me? How am I going to pay my bills? Why is this lady buying so much stuff?’

Relaxation methods involves creating space in the mind.

Breathe in. Breathe out. Meditate. Yoga. Tai Chi. Praying. Chanting.

All these exercises are meant to empty the mind of distracting thoughts which results in more space within your mind.



At the end of most people’s lives, they regret not having more time to spend with family and friends.

What they are running out is space.

The space in their timeline is quickly coming to end.

If only they could have some more space to spend it with their loved ones.

If they could, they would go back and try to dedicate more space for friends and family.



The most valuable substance can’t be seen, touched, tasted, smelled, or heard.

Its what everyone has, but no one ever has enough of it.

It’s everywhere you go, yet no where to be found.

It grows in value, only if you learn how to appreciate it.

The most valuable substance on earth is space.

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The Bystander, The Consumer, & The Creator

In a book by Deepak Chopra, I remember reading the author explaining the 3 ways of experiencing life. You either experience life as a bystander, consumer, or creator.

For example, the sun rises every morning.

For most of us, we don’t even care about it. We have a billion other things on our plate. We’ve witnessed the sun rising millions of times. Today is no different.

For others who do care, they set about 30 mins once in a while to take in the view of a new day unfolding. There is something magical about seeing something so grand, warm, and beautiful rise out of the sky everyday.

For a select few, out there the sight of the sun provides an inspiration for something we are doing. We take in the beautiful sight of the sun and that pushes us to use the sun for our new company logo.



Life is amazing but most of us spend it as a bystander. We simply are too busy to appreciate all the simple things in life. There is not much in life for us. Life becomes boring and stressful as a bystander.

From time to time, we may stop to smell of fresh flowers or call up an old friend to catch up. Now we are simply consuming what life has to give. We learn that it feels good to take. Life becomes good and cheery.

Finally, there are moments in our life where we are inspired or motivated by the world. We seek expression through our work or hobbies. We learn that it feels even better to give back. Life becomes purposeful and fulfilling.

There is a cycle in life. Things exist and happen. We can ignore it and leave it alone. Or we can open ourselves up and embrace it. You can then take what you have received and find a way to express it to the world. It can be a meal, a blog, a song, a dance, or a letter.

Once you have created something, you now give others the opportunity to consume something new in the world. From something that has already been created, you have found a way to create something completely new for the world to admire. The have completed the cycle of life.

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Baking Up The Sermons

My cousin and me recently made a visit to Costco.

We were casually going through the aisles until we hit the pastry section.

Immediately, we were mesmerized by the smell of fresh baked goods.

We were kids in a candy store, wanting to take everything home.

We settled on a mixed batch of cookies consisting of chocolate chips, macadamia nuts, and oatmeal raisins.



After putting the batch into our cart, my cousin made the following the comment:

“Its so difficult to find the motivation to bake cookies, when it’s so easily accessible through Costco.”

I wasn’t sure where she was coming from, so I asked her to elaborate.

“Well for me it’s so much trouble to go buy the materials, prepare it, and then wait for it to be ready”.

“Sometimes I go through all that trouble and my batch isn’t even good as the ones at Costco.”



My cousin had a point.

Why go through all that trouble, when you don’t have to right?

Most of the people that I know, don’t have enough time to do all the things they want to do.

Why waste time when you already don’t have enough time?

Life is about prioritizing what’s important and sometimes baking doesn’t always make it to the top of the list.



The only reasons I can think of, in which a person actually prefers baking cookies over buying them is:

1. Their batch is superior in taste and quality compared to the bought ones.

2. Their batch is considerable cheaper when you factor in time and materials invested.

3. They aren’t in it for superior quality or saving money, but rather they just enjoy the process of baking.

Intrinsically, you have to derive some type of benefit or else why would you choose the harder route?



This weekend I talked briefly with a friend I haven’t seen for a very long time.

She told me she recently transitioned from finance to going to school at Le Cordon Bleu.

I never asked her why she wanted to be a pastry chef, but I can see the above reasons applying to her.

Reason #1 applies to her because you got to have self-confidence in your creations and believe that they are of the highest quality.

Reason #3 applies to her because it’s impossible to make a career out of baking if you can’t enjoy yourself in the kitchen.



People ask me all the time, “Why don’t you go to the church anymore?”

I never really knew the real answer, so I made something up:

“The Catholic Church has too many rules and regulations.”

“I don’t get anything from going to mass anymore.”

“I look around at all the people in church who pretend to be holy and I lose faith.”



In the end, all those answers were insufficient because I felt like taking them back the moment I said them.

The truth is, the Catholic Church is good.

I do get something from going to mass.

Others only affect my faith, because I let them.

But still, I haven’t found a reason for my lack of motivation to attend weekly mass.



That is until now.

I stopped going to church because I wanted more than what was being offered to me at church.

For me, the most important of part of mass is the sermon.

It’s the one part that personally bridges my life to the life of Jesus Christ and all that happened before and after his life.

Everything else is simply ritual repetition with small deviations depending on where we are at in the Catholic liturgical year.



For close to 30 years of my religious life, I was like my cousin who finds it easier to buy cookies then to make them.

She goes to Costco, she finds her cookies, she eats it, and moves on with her life.

I go to Church, I get my sermon, I think about it, and then I move on with my life.

Every Sunday for 30 years, I have gone through this same routine.

I realized this same routine was cutting it for me anymore.



I took myself out of the church, because I realized that I depended on the church so much I felt like I was spiritually complacent.

I grew spiritually complacent because I knew that my Pastor will feed my soul every Sunday.

I was so busy with everything else in life that I didn’t even try to make more time for my soul than the bare minimum.

The bare minimum for any practicing Catholic is a 1 hour devotion to God every Sunday.

Because the church only required 1 hour of my life, that’s all I gave to God.



But removing myself from church didn’t exactly help me spiritually.

What has helped me spiritually after leaving the church, is learning how to bake just like my friend.

Instead of going to costco and buying cookies, she “bakes up” her own batch of cookies.

For me, instead of going to church and receiving the sermon, I “bake up” my own sermons.

I found the process of “baking up” my own sermons more rewarding than just receiving the sermon at church.



When a pastor “bakes up” a sermon, he sits down and reads the bible.

He asks himself, “How can I make this bible passage relevant to my audience?”

He does research and tries to come up with some stories, jokes, and props to engage the audience.

He brainstorms, makes multiple drafts, and might ask others to critique his work.

When he believes it is good enough, he delivers it on Sunday.



I go through a similar process and once I’m done, I usually put my findings in a blog.

In fact, all my personal sermons that I have ever “baked up” go directly into this blog.

I do this not because of reason #1 (I believe my sermons are way better than the pastor.)

Nor do I believe that I fit under scenario #2 (I probably invest way more time than a pastor does. He’s definitely more efficient than me.)

I do this because of reason #3 (I simply enjoy the process of “baking up” my own sermons every week.)



For me the “baking-up” a sermon process is a spiritual process.

It encourages me to be proactive in my spirituality instead of waiting to be “fed” by the pastor every Sunday.

True, I may spend way more time coming up with these sermons when compared to the pastor’s preparation time.

But my priority is spirituality, so the fact that I spend so much time preparing, is actually a benefit not a drawback.

I’m not wasting time, I’m actually investing it.



Before, I might’ve told myself to just get the hour of mass over so I can do what I really want to do.

Now, I might spend 1, 3, or 5 hours on my own sermon until I’m satisfied with the result.

This may only apply to me, but I definitely enjoy the process of “baking-up” my own sermons because I am more involved.

I could always revert back to going to church and receive the pastor’s sermon weekly, that would be so easy.

The only reason why I persist down the hard road is because I just find it way more rewarding when I’m the one baking up the sermons.

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Something Inside of You

There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It only feels alive when you can do more than someone else.

“All day baby. All day. You know you can’t guard me.”

“That win was so easy. I didn’t even have to try.”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It enjoys making others inferior, so you can feel superior.

“Are you dumb? How come you don’t know that?”

“This is so easy even a 5th grader can do it. And you’re having trouble with it?”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It likes to equate who you are with what you have.

“Don’t worry, you’ll be happier when you get a new car. I promise.”

“I just lost all my money in the stock market. My life is over.”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It takes everything that happens personally and then over-reacts.

“She purposely didn’t say Hi to me. What’s her problem …”

“John hasn’t text me back since I texted him 15 mins ago. Is he upset with me?”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It likes to drop names, hoping that the association with important people will make you feel more important.

“I only do make-up for A-List celebrities such as Katy Perry and Ellen Degeneres.”

“Of course, I know John. We go way back. I’m one of the reason he is so big now. I showed him everything he knows.”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It enjoys wanting so much, it never stops to enjoy what it has attained.

“I’m so blessed to have so much in my life, but you know what would make it even better … a job that allows me to travel.”

“My closet is full of Air Jordans. I have enough to wear one pair everyday of the year. OMG, they’re coming out with a new one next month! Must camp overnight to be the first one to get it.”



There is something inside of you, that is inside all of us.

It relentlessly find ways to keep you away from happiness.

It keeps you busy with trivial matters, so you might overlook all the important stuff.

That something which is inside of you and everyone else, it is called the ego.

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