Joel Neoh’s eight nuggets from his journey: Page 2 of 2

5) Our parents are responsible for everything

Our parents are people too.

Joel Neoh’s eight nuggets from his journey: Page 2 of 2

One the most disillusioning realisations is seeing our dad and mom not as the all-knowing protectors (like we did when we were still children) and not as the obnoxious and uncool authoritarians (like we did as teenagers) ... but as peers.
As just two flawed, vulnerable, struggling individuals doing their best, despite often not knowing what they’re doing.
There is a high chance that our parents screwed some things up during our childhood, and we’ll start to notice all of these screw-ups from our 20s onwards. Growing up and maturing to this is always a painful process. It can kick up a lot of bitterness.
Our first step is to acknowledge, accept, and (perhaps) forgive these mistakes or flaws.
They’re people too. They’re doing their best, even though they don’t always know what the best is.
6) Relationship goal: Settle down
Settle up.
“When are you planning to settle down?” After your 25th birthday, this question will steadily creep up to the top of your FAQ list.
While friends and family are not asking out of any bad intention, this is, nonetheless, a bad question.
‘Settling down’ means ‘to move downwards, sink, or descend,’ and also means the ‘opposite of up.’
We’ve seen this with friends and family who rushed to ‘settle down’ – accepting mediocrity – and are now struggling in unhappy complicated relationships.
Settle up.
Be in relationships that inspire us to discover our better selves. We deserve someone who does not only make us feel better, but makes us want to be better. Think: 1 + 1 = 5.
When we’re with the right person, we’ll treat them as an equal partner – as a person with equal voice (and equal value).
Shoot the next person who tells you to settle down with someone who loves you more. Only accept being with an equal.
7) Possessions are important
Possessions are worse than worthless.
They’re harmful.
They add no value to our lives, and cost us everything. Not just the money required to buy them, but the time and money spent shopping for them, maintaining them, worrying about them, insuring them, fixing them, and more.
I’ve bought many things because I thought I wanted them, but after I bought them, I inevitably lost interest within months.
Our possessions will only make us temporarily happy, while enriching experiences are what we'll remember forever.
In 30 years’ time, I’ll remember the amazing Boracay trip last month to the Philippines, instead of whatever I bought this year.
Now, when it comes to experiences – we will miss a ton of them! But that’s really okay.
We often get caught up in trying to do everything and trying not to miss out on anything important. We forget the fact that we cannot experience everything. We forget that our physical reality dictates we’ll naturally miss most things.
We cannot read all the good books, watch all the good films, go to all the best cities in the world, try out all the best restaurants, meet all the great people.
But the secret is: Life is better when we don’t try to do everything. Enjoy that slice of life we experience, and life will turn out to be wonderful.
8) Know everything
I know almost nothing.
After many years of learnings and self-reflection … I still have a lot more to learn. If I’ve learnt anything, it’s that I know almost nothing, and that I’m often wrong about what I think I know.
Life has many lessons to teach, and I’m looking forward to them all.
Joel Neoh is the founder of KFit and formerly Groupon’s international vice president for Asia Pacific. This was published a post in LinkedIn, and is reprinted here with his kind permission.
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