Update on the 6 Month Plan

Action Plan for January 2013

Goal A: successful UniCamp training

  • discuss BeClear+UniCamp partnership with Denise, Program Directors, and other relevant people (conversations already started)
    • follow-up with all relevant parties and start new conversations by Jan. 15
    • Definitely behind schedule, but I did email Denise again and I forwarded the lesson plan to camp. To be continued…
  • create action plan for time as HC
    • by Jan. 18, outline timeline of HC responsibilities from Lship training until camp
    • yeah, this didn’t happen. I forgot and then it seemed like an unnecessary amount of work (I got lazy.) Still thinking about creating an all-Lship resource book, but it’ll probably happen as I go rather than in advance.
  • set goals for self, HCAs, session, and camp
    • by retreat (approx. 1/18) write out who I want to be and what I want to do as HC and at least 3 expectations each of myself, my team (how I will interact with them), my session (how I will interact with them), and camp (what I want to accomplish/present)
    • working on it for retreat this weekend.

Goal B: school/career

  • finish applications for grad. school (Jan 15. for Columbia; Feb. 1 for SDSU)
  • submitted Colulmbia. decided not to apply to SDSU.
  • who can I talk to about grad. school/work? (make list of people by 1/11)
    • J., L., A., M., etc.
    • then make committment to contact at least 3 of them
    • emailed to start these conversations. more to come.

Goal C: personal growth

  • continue blog
    • at least 1 post/week
    • yup!
  • continue conversations with A.
    • at least 1 conversation (at least 15 minutes) per week
    • yup!

Article: Happy vs. Meaningful

An article about survivor of WWII’s concentration camps that distinguishes between being happy and having meaning.

For me, the distinction is one I do not often make, but I am going to start. I have often set my meaning of life to being happy, but after this article I would like to re-articulate my goal in life to have meaning, and subsequently create happiness from that. This isn’t to say I’m giving up on being happy. It’s just to say I’m putting meaning before happiness.


So, how’s that 6 Month Plan?

So…. I may have dropped off the wagon a little bit. All my energy for that 6 Month Plan ended up funneled into the following Facebook status:

tired of being a boring 20-something and looking for meaning in life on Saturday night, I decided to enroll in LACMA’s adult art classes, but it doesn’t fit with my schedule, so then I tried to join a kickball league, but it said sorry we’re full, so I got a magazine subscription to National Geographic instead.

To date, it’s one of my most popular Facebook posts (for what that’s worth) right up there with my 6 Month Plan. I realized two things:

  1. Making a plan takes work. Maintaining the plan requires even more.
  2. I can post thought-provoking articles everyday, but that doesn’t mean I’m living by what they say.

So now what? Now I’m going to use this blog in a more personal way to detail my progress on my 6 Month Plan (as well as share cool articles). This is my first progress post, and I think you can tell that I’m a bit behind schedule. Still to come: my updated action plan for the next 2-3 weeks.


Until then, all my love,

B. Teng

In Action vs. Inaction

According to Jane Brody’s NY Times article, optimism is not so much about positive thinking as it is about positive actions. Among the tools to use, Brody suggests meditation, laughter, and engagement in meaningful activities. All this is designed to help you bounce back when you fall and keep going.

‘I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.’ -Thomas Edison


Live to Work, or Work to Live?

I was talking with my friend about the difference between working to live and living to work. Often in the U.S. we are taught to live to work. In other words, our lives are “meant” to be productive. We are “meant” to be workers. In other countries, the emphasis is on the living. Working provides a way to live, but work is not one’s life. Work pays the bills while life happens outside the office.

I don’t know where I stand on the difference. Probably somewhere in the middle. (I’m not a fan of binaries anyhow.) Work is a way to enable us to live our lives, but I hope my works adds to my sense of fulfillment nonetheless.

On a related note, here’s a video on money and jobs, namely “What if Money Were No Object”.

Life Skills to Master by 40

From Life Skills: Ivanka Trump, Thich Nhat Hanh And Others On The Things Everyone Should Master By Age 40. More good ideas for life. The quote is one that seemed especially salient to me.

How To Say Goodbye To A Loved One
“First and most important: Meet the dying person where she is. She may be in denial, and denial is a fabulous crutch. You don’t pull a crutch out from under somebody. Try to validate the feelings behind the denial. So imagine your aunt says, ‘Let’s reserve a house at the lake this summer. I loved the weeks we used to spend there.’ You don’t rush out to make a reservation; you reminisce with her about those good times. She’s living in memories much kinder than her reality.
“But let’s say she tells you, ‘You know, I’m not going to live much longer.’ The door’s open. Be honest, direct. Tell her you hate that this is happening. Tell her it mattered that she was here. Tell her how she enriched your life, that she won’t be forgotten. This is no time to pussyfoot. For God’s sake, don’t tell her she looks great, or that she’ll pull through. Pretending creates a chasm of loneliness for the dying. Can you imagine if you were in labor, and no one in the room would acknowledge that you were giving birth?
“Toward the end, dying people tend to withdraw. You know how when you drop a pebble in a pond, the rings ripple out? For a dying person, the rings go in. It doesn’t matter what’s happening in politics or sports or the next room. Eventually all that matters is ‘I’m hot. I’m cold. I love you. Do you love me?’ At that point, all that’s required is your presence. Be quiet. Put your hands on hers. That’s it.”

— Maggie Callanan, hospice nurse since 1981 and coauthor of the celebrated book Final Gifts