No one is perfect. Isn’t that what make you, special? I know, it’s such a cliché. But hear me out.

Life is a journey of constantly falling down, learning from it, picking yourself up and trying not to make the same mistake again. We fail. We learn. That’s how we improve. That’s how we have shaped ourselves into the people we are today. We may think that we have a choice on choosing who we want to be. Our personality, character and person. But my reply is Yes and No. “Yes!” You do have a choice! You can choose and decide what kind of environment you want to place yourself in. But at the same time, I shout “No!” too. Consciously or subconsciously, our community, social interactions, mindsets and actions, they all influence us. Haven’t you heard?

You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.

This is one of my favourite quotes in life, because there is just SO MUCH wisdom and insight in it. We may sometimes think that we are strong enough to resist being influenced by our friends and company. (I’ve learnt this from past mistakes and experience) But it takes an impossibly well-grounded person to stick to his/her principals, and even then, it does take a toll on the person eventually.

There are times in life when I feel sub-par. Inadequate. (Be it physically or mentally) Don’t we all? But when I look back and reflect, where does it all stem from? Comparison. That’s where it comes from. It has come about from me looking at others and asking myself why I don’t have what they have. What is it that makes them so much better than me. Why am I in such a crappy state whilst they seem to always be so well-off? (This is also where self-love comes in. But I won’t talk about it here today because that’s another whole looooong, intense & super big topic to discuss about, plus it’s already getting late at 1.30am and I still have an early morning 9am lecture to attend to tomorrow and another full day and week-end of studying for a test on Tuesday. I’m not complaining btw!!!! I love morning lectures 🙂 )

Since young, my mum has always told my siblings and I. Don’t compare.


When you compare, you fall into this trap of constantly asking yourself “What ifs”, “Why” etc. You try to ask and reason things out. But it’ll never end. Life isn’t fair. People don’t always start out on Level 1 in life. Some start at Level -20. Some Level 3. Some may even be at Level 100. Who cares?! We can complain and compare all we want until the cows come home tomorrow. Or next year. Or the year after that. It doesn’t matter. We can’t control the circumstances we have been placed into. What we can control is our attitude and how we choose to see, face and do about it.

I love this video on privilege. Watch it! Really. It’ll be worth all 4 minutes and 11 seconds of it. It made me stop and think. It made me thankful. We don’t always notice and appreciate what we have going our way, us lucky things.

There is this quote that has been going around. It goes something like this.

If you have food in your fridge, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep you are richer than 75% of the world.

If you have money in the bank, your wallet, and some spare change you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy.

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness you are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the agony of imprisonment or torture, or the horrible pangs of starvation you are luckier than 500 million people alive and suffering.

If you can read this message you are more fortunate than 3 billion people in the world who cannot read it at all.

Whenever I read this, I just feel so absolutely blessed. Minor things such as a comfortable bed, working electricity, constant clean running water, good food to eat and a good education, we often think of them as a given. But that is not true at all! So many people out there are suffering, trying their best to cope and live their lives from day to day whilst we complain and make a big hooha about having to get up in time for a 9am lecture, or complain about dinner being at 7pm instead of the usual 6pm, or complain about why the WiFi connection at home happens to be weak or drop every once in a while. C’mon, we’re better than that aren’t we?

But anyway I digress.

The experiences I’ve had in life so far, the mistakes I’ve made and regret or do not regret, every single thing in my life has shaped me to become the person I am today. And I will not ever, EVER, trade myself for anyone else, regardless of who you say I can become or what I can have in life. I am proud of who I am and have become.

My message to you all my dear readers today is to be thankful of what you have. Love yourself.  Imperfections, regrets, spots, blemishes and scars. Your height. Your size. Your disability. Everything included. As hard as it may be to love and accept some, try your best, because at the end of the day, they are what makes you, you!


Paul Chong

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