Happy 2020!

The new year began! 

Hope it started well for everyone! 

Had the opportunity to think about what to focus on before it started.

And I thought we should focus on Attitude and Mindset.


I realised that if we want to live well by way of making discerning decisions, we may not want to make haste decisions or take hasty actions. Some time may be required for deliberations, occasionally even for research and consultations.

Have you ever tried to go without your mobile phone for a month? I tried and after attempting to do without the mobile device for a month, I managed to gain some insights about how it has taken a lot of mental space from me. I thought I got it sorted out, and it would be as simple as just putting the device aside for improvement in my focus in the new year.

Fortunately, the one month also gave me some form of “brakes”. So before I took any actions, I decided that I should pace myself, reorganise my thoughts, create some mental space, etc. and look at the things that preoccupied me – psychologically, emotionally, spiritually, etc.

The truth of the matter was that, there were just so many preoccupations. And it was the result of responding to life without giving it much time for deliberation, research and or consultations. Even if there were, little time was taken to look into the execution or actions.

Then, I realised that the problem was not the device, it was my attitude and mindset. The attitude was such that “it was our way of life in Singapore, everybody uses it” or “it is simply not practical to not have it”. Such attitudes are so pervasive in our own society; not carrying the same kind of attitudes, means we are on our own. And this is unconsciously not okay. The attitude is also present in so many other things.

Prominent psychologist Gordon Allport described this latent psychological construct “attitude” as “the most distinctive and indispensable concept in contemporary social psychology.”

Let’s be clear first, “attitude” is a psychological construct, a mental and emotional entity that is naturally part of or characterises a person. Therefore, if we want to attend to it or work at it, it is not so straightforward. It is formed over time through our experiences, trainings, past and present. And as we may know, attitudes influence our mindsets; the way we think and what we think.

I was initially thinking about just dealing with the mobile device to solve the problem, as it was so instrumental in preoccupying me with so many things; but in actual fact, there were other interplaying factors, like my attitude; like the selective attention; like the kind of choices I make, like the thoughts I have, and like how I think about things, etc.

For the new year, I got my personal work cut out for me for continued growth! What about you?

What do you want to fill your life with for the new year? What do you want to work on?


Contributed by Nicholas Gabriel Lim

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