10 Quotes from The Alchemist

1. It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting.

When we have a dream, life seems to have a meaning. Having a dream gives us ambition to work hard to achieve it. And by living each day filled with hope and perseverance, life will definitely be interesting.

2. Everyone seems to have a clear idea of how other people should lead their lives, but none about his or her own.

We often judge each other of all the mistakes others make, but we seldom admit our own mistakes. Therefore, we try to change the ways others live their lives, but do not change ourselves. I have been guilty of doing this, but I’m learning not to be so judgmental of the ways others live their lives but to be more aware of how I live mine.

3. When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.

When we really desire something, then there is nothing stopping us from achieving it.

4. Making a decision is only the beginning of things.

Decisions are only the starting points of journeys; it is only by making a decision that we can move forward. The decisions you make aren’t very important – it’s what you learn along the way that is.

5. If what one finds is made of pure matter, it will never spoil. And one can always come back. If what you had found was only a moment of light, like the explosion of a star, you would find nothing on your return.

This to me means that we shouldn’t let our present hinder us from achieving what we want for our future. If we really want something, then we should be ready to risk what we have for it. However, if the things of the past or present are truly valuable, they will always remain with us, so we shouldn’t be too worried or afraid.

6. Wherever your heart is, that is where you’ll find your treasure.

Sometimes I find it hard to pursue something that I love because my thoughts and worries inhibit me to do so. However, if we learn to just do whatever we enjoy, then we can be truly happy.

7. The darkest hour of the night came just before the dawn.

As long as there is good, there will also be bad. Sometimes, the bad may seem unbearable and incessant, but if we endure it, then an auspicious future will surely come.

8. There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.

There is actually nothing that holds us back except for ourselves. Once we remove the negativity from our minds and replace it with optimism and determination, then anything is possible.

9. When you possess great treasures within you, and try to tell others of them, seldom are you believed.

Even when you have the potential and capability to do great things, there will always be obstacles that will hold you back from achieving them. The only way you can succeed is by having faith in yourself even when no one else will.

10. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better, too.

This quote to me means: attitude is everything. When we try to become positive and open-minded, everything around us will seem to be good too.

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Daily Prompt: Recently Acquired

What’s the most important (or interesting or unexpected) thing about blogging you know today that you didn’t know a month ago?

I think the most important thing that I have learned when I started blogging is that I was able to get to know myself better. I consider myself to think a lot, and it’s nice to sort of share my ideas through this particular medium. A month ago, I was blogging mainly because it was a school assignment. But now, I look forward to blogging. I enjoy writing down (or rather, publishing) my thoughts and ideas, because it winds me down and helps me relax in some way. At first it was difficult to publish a post every day, but now the assignment has gotten a lot more relaxed, so I can actually enjoy doing it without getting stressed over it.

An interesting thing I have learned about blogging, as I have mentioned before, is that blogging is therapeutic. Before I started blogging, every thought I had was jumbled in a big mess and I would get stressed because I didn’t know how to let them out. Now, because I have a way to let my thoughts out, it has helped me relax. I used to keep and write in a journal almost every day when I was in ninth grade. It was because I just came to this school that year, and every day was new to me. I also wrote in a journal because back then, I didn’t know anyone and didn’t have anyone to talk to, and my journal was the one thing I could share my ideas with (that sounds depressing). Now, I still have a journal but I don’t write in it as much, so I’m also glad that blogging has kind of helped me write journal entries in an electronic way.

The most unexpected thing I encountered while blogging is that I actually gained followers. The only thing I paid attention to at first was just putting up a post once every week or so to do my school assignment. Then one day, while I was checking my emails, I saw a couple from WordPress informing me that I gained followers. It honestly felt great, because it seemed like my work was being appreciated by others and I felt rewarded.

Overall, I think blogging is a great experience, and I would like to try to keep up blogging because it is good for me.

Daily Prompt: To Be Resolved

How did you do on last year’s New Year’s resolutions? Do you anticipate there would be any leftover items to be carried over to next year?

I don’t usually make New Year’s resolutions because I already know that I will most likely not accomplish them. I used to make resolutions such as ‘exercise more,’ ‘study more for school tests,’ or ‘watch less TV,’ but I didn’t have the drive to commit to them.

I’ve come to decide that I shouldn’t make these kinds of vague, restricting resolutions, because I will not see them as positive change and rather see them negatively. So instead, I just try to mentally push myself while I am doing certain activities. For example, while I’m watching a TV series, I will make myself watch only one episode. Another example is: while I’m studying for a test, I will quiz myself at the end of the studies to check whether I fully understand the material. So far, making changes as I am doing something has been better than setting resolutions in the beginning of the year and forcing myself to stick to them.

I don’t like making resolutions about school, health, or TV and computer use, but this year, I’m going to make resolutions about reading books and watching movies. In 2014, I wasn’t able to read books or watch movies as much as I have wanted to, especially because I love doing them both a lot. I was browsing on the Internet and found a 2015 Reading Challenge that I am going to participate next year. It has about fifty or so different kinds of challenges, such as reading ‘a book with a number in the title’ or ‘a book written by an author with your same initials.’ I am going to try to complete this entire list, because it would really help me diversify the kinds of books I read.

I haven’t seen any good movie challenges yet, so I think that I will just challenge myself to watch fifty movies in 2015 (about half of which I want to watch in the movie theater). I think that is a pretty reasonable challenge, because that’s about one movie a week, and when I am too busy to watch movies on school days, I can watch a bunch of movie during the holidays.

The New Year’s ‘resolutions’ last year (making small changes while I’m doing an activity) will probably be carried out in 2015, and more years to come, until I am satisfied with my daily activities.

Daily Prompt: August Blues

As a kid, were you happy or anxious about going back to school? Now that you’re older, how has your attitude toward the end of the summer evolved?

When I was younger, I didn’t want to ever go back to school. I still kind of feel the same way, but my attitude toward school has gotten a lot better.

I think I didn’t like going to school when I was younger because school was so restricting. There were rules for everything, and punishment for every rule you break. I didn’t like studying, I especially didn’t like homework, and I even didn’t like some of the teachers. I also think that I didn’t want to go back to school because I had more things to do when I was little. My family would always go somewhere (usually Pattaya) whenever we were on vacation. We’d have fun almost every day, and I didn’t like the idea that the fun would have to come to an end.

There was one thing I did like about going to school, and that was shopping for school supplies. I still like shopping for school supplies, and whenever I go to malls, I’ll browse stationery stores such as Loft or B2S although I don’t need to buy anything.

Now, I look forward to going back to school. I don’t do a lot of things during vacation now, and if I do something, it’s most likely me going to study at an academy. Now, I like sticking to a routine, and try to be less spontaneous. Before, even if I did absolutely nothing during vacation, I would still wish that I can do nothing than to go to school. But now, I look forward to school, because I feel more productive and I can spend more time with my friends. Of course, I still don’t enjoy the work that comes along with school, especially because the work load increases every year.

I can honestly say that I enjoy school (more than I used to, at least). It’s the one place that I can make new friends, spend time with old friends, and do something worthwhile with my time, all at once. Now that I have less than two years of school left, I realize that my school years are probably going to some of the best years I would have experienced and I should fully enjoy it and not let small problems trouble me. Now, if only there was a little less work to do…

Daily Prompt: Now? Later!

We all procrastinate. Website, magazine, knitting project, TV show, something else – what’s your favorite procrastination destination?

I feel like I always procrastinate; there are rarely any days which I don’t. When I was younger, I would procrastinate by playing with my friends or my brother, but now since I have my own laptop and a smart phone, I spend more time using them.

When I procrastinate, I usually do everything except what I actually have to do. Usually, I don’t clean my closet or vacuum my bedroom floor or organize my desk, but when I have to study for a test or complete homework, even doing the dishes seem fun. You can tell that I have a lot of school work if my room is clean; the more work I have the more cleaner my room will be.

Although I tend to do a lot of cleaning when I have a lot of work, my favorite ‘procrastination destination’ is reading books. Now, I don’t make time to read books; I usually read them while I’m eating dinner or waiting for something, like for my computer to boot up or for a movie to load. I tend to read a lot of books during the week before and during examinations, which is bad, but I can’t help it. I think that I read more books during examination weeks combined than I do the rest of the year.

The rest of the year, I tend to procrastinate ironically. When I have a lot of work, I like to watch YouTube videos. But the ironic thing about that is that most of the videos I’m watching are related to my school work or about study tips. One of my favorite YouTube channel is CrashCourse. CrashCourse is actually really helpful; when I watch the Chemistry videos uploaded on that channel, it helps me understand a certain topic more.

When I procrastinate, I do things that I usually wouldn’t do, such as cleaning, and it helps me relax, so I don’t think that it’s completely terrible. Yes, procrastination is a bad habit, but I think a little procrastination now and then is okay.

Daily Prompt: Now? Later!

We all procrastinate. Website, magazine, knitting project, TV show, something else – what’s your favorite procrastination destination?

I feel like I always procrastinate; there are rarely any days which I don’t. When I was younger, I would procrastinate by playing with my friends or my brother, but now since technology has advanced, I spend more time on my computer and my phone.

When I procrastinate, I usually do everything except what I actually have to do. Usually, I don’t clean my closet or vacuum my bedroom floor or organize my desk, but when I have to study for a test or complete homework, even doing the dishes seem fun. You can tell that I have a lot of school work if my room is clean; the more work I have the more cleaner my room will be.

Although I tend to do a lot of cleaning when I have a lot of work, my favorite ‘procrastination destination’ is reading books. Now, I don’t make time to read books; I usually read them while I’m eating dinner or waiting for something, like for my computer to boot up or for a movie to load. I tend to read a lot of books during the week before and during examinations, which is bad, but I can’t help it. I think that I read more books during examination weeks combined than I do the rest of the year.

The rest of the year, I tend to procrastinate ironically. When I have a lot of work, I like to watch YouTube videos. But the ironic thing about that is that most of the videos I’m watching are related to my school work or about study tips. My favorite YouTube channels are CrashCourse, vsauce, and TedEd. CrashCourse is actually really helpful; when I watch the Chemistry videos uploaded on that channel, it helps me understand a certain topic more.

Sometimes, I procrastinate by doing next to nothing at all. When I’m exhausted after doing some part of my work, sometimes I just play music really loudly and lie down on the floor. I usually have to do something all the time, no matter how small that thing may be, but sometimes I’m just so tired that all I want to do is lie down for a while and listen to good music.

When I procrastinate, I do things that I usually wouldn’t do, such as cleaning, and it helps me relax, so I don’t think that it’s completely terrible. Yes, procrastination is a bad habit, but I think a little procrastination now and then is okay.

Daily Prompt: Moved to Tears

Do movies, songs, or other forms of artistic expression easily make you cry? Tell us about a recent tear-jerking experience!

I consider myself to be rather emotionless; I don’t easily cry. Even if I read a sad book, watch a sad movie, or listen to sad songs, I don’t usually cry. The types of books, movies, or music that do make me cry usually are just so well made that the sad parts can make anybody cry.

I usually cry when I watch movies that are set during a war; Saving Private Ryan, Life is Beautiful, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. I cry when I watch war movies because although the story itself might have not happened, the events or war are very real, and they affected millions of lives. Strangely, I don’t cry over deaths in other genres of movies, but the only deaths I cry over are ones in war movies. I watched the first two of the mentioned movies way too long ago, so I remember crying, but I don’t clearly remember why or in which part. But I do remember why I cried in The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. (There will be spoilers.)

Set during World War II, a boy named Bruno and his family moves near a concentration camp, where his father works as a commandant. One day, Bruno discovers the concentration camp and befriends a Jewish boy named Shmuel. Although Bruno’s father is a Nazi, Bruno himself does not know about concentration camps, the hatred against Jews, or the terrible effects of the war. Because Bruno is homeschooled and moved away from all his friends, he spends more and more time with Shmuel. One day, Shmuel informs Bruno that his father is missing, and Bruno changes into Shmuel’s striped clothes and sneaks inside the concentration camp to help find Shmuel’s father. One of the guards rounds up the men and boys, including Shmuel and Bruno, and leads them to a gas chamber, where they are killed.

The end scene when the people are killed in the gas chamber is not overly dramatic, but seems indifferent. The lives of these people went away not with a bang or a boom, not even with a quiet whisper. I feel that the raw, realistic, and honest scene was what made me cry.