‘The Epic Crush of Genie Lo’ by F. C. Yee was one of this summer’s most exciting new book releases. With a diverse cast of characters, an action-packed plot, and a fair amount of demon-slaying, it delivered on every front! But asides from being a great urban, fantasy adventure it also had some timeless wisdom to impart the reader with.
Never before has it been so imperative that we take the time to centre ourselves and focus our minds, than in the chaos of modern-day life. We are constantly switched-on beings, receiving an endless stream of data through the multitude of screens we surround ourselves with. Some of our most meaningful interactions throughout the day are when someone favourites our tweet or we heart someone’s IG selfie. We are materially obsessed and focus our desires on the purely shallow rather than the immaterial and lasting. It’s got to stop.
Genie Lo is here to tell us how. This book, steeped in Asian culture, is spreading its spirit of mindfulness to help its reader lead soul-fulfilling and mentally stimulating lives. Thankfully, demon-hunting is not required to do so.
How many of us are stuck in the 9-5 rut? Work, eat, sleep, repeat sound familiar? Unless your career is stimulating your desires then why are you exhausting all your energies on it? We need money to survive, sure, but we also need to really assess where the focus of our life is. Are we living to work or working to live?
As draining as it can feel, put your focus on your own dreams and desires. Instead of lazing around all weekend binge-watching Netflix, do something that excites you. Instead of pressing the snooze button sixteen times in the morning get up and take some ‘you’ time before the dreaded morning commute.
This one goes hand-in-hand with the last point. Life would be rather a dull affair if we were all carbon-cut-copies of each other. Variety is the spice of life and we must learn to embrace the paprika within ourselves. Take the time to find what makes your heart sing and sets your soul on fire. Learn what you love. And then you can start to live what you love.
Ever wanted to learn Spanish? Enrol in a course. Want to be the new J. K? Get plotting that novel. Want to make your body a temple? Then sign-up at your local gym. Now is the time to focus on you!
Focus your energies on wherever you find your passion and excel in an area that brings you joy. So you’ve dedicated the time finding your ‘thing’ and now you must set aside some energy to focus on it. You can’t run a marathon if you can’t even switch off the snooze button and walk the dogs in the morning. You need to evoke the old ‘mind over matter’ mantra here and get your body into a routine where you fit your new passion into your daily. Soon it will become part of your natural routine and you’ll thank yourself later for inserting a little portion of joy into each and every day.
“You don’t owe anyone a reason”
Never be embarrassed about your passion. Never be embarrassed by who you are. Embrace the unique you. Your culture, your appearance, your passions, your heart – all these things make you, you. And you are beautiful. Never forget it. And if someone can’t appreciate that? Well, it sounds like you need a friend purge.
Think: “The first plunge of a roller-coaster isn’t going to kill me”
Passion is a scary thing. If it’s something that excites you then that means it’s something that is close to your heart. It can be overwhelming investing all of your time into something that is so bound to your happiness, which is simply the reason why many of us don’t! Embrace the fear and every time you feel that butterfly infestation storm your stomach region, imagine them into the joyful fluttering of excitement instead. Don’t allow your fears the power to control your life.
“Act differently for a change. Improvise.”
Shake it up. Live in the moment. Say yes. Routine is good but so is change. You’ve heard it all before but that doesn’t mean it isn’t sound advice. By acting the way you always have, you will continue to live the life you have always led. If you want your life to change, then the first port of call is your mindset. Change how you act and everything else will follow.
“Maybe it’s time to loosen up”
Laughter is a cure for many things. It is the best natural stress-reliever and has been proven to lower blood pressure. Not everything you do today has to serve some future goal and you can simply do something just… because. Insert some fun into your every day and you’ll always have a reason to smile in life. Fun is just as important as goals, and you need to find a happy medium where each day is injected with a healthy balance of both.
“Self-sacrifice and humility”
From lowering stress to boosting self-confidence, volunteering offers many health benefits. By giving back you are, in turn, giving to yourself. You’ll be amazed by the positive alterations you will start to see in your own life by helping that of another. So find a local shelter or charity that you can dedicate some time to serving, and feel good by doing good.
“Be open-minded and humble towards your coaches and your seniors.”
There never comes a point in life where we stop learning. Be mindful for who and what is surrounding you and you’ll notice all the opportunities life provides, in which to improve yourself. Not everything you learn will come from books and other individuals in your life can tutor you in ways you never imagined if you are receptive to it. Always be respectful and show gratitude for those who have had more life experience than yourself and be open-minded and humble about benefiting from it.
“Heaven has a plan to deal with the situation”
This one is a biggie: accept your past. Every human alive has made mistakes. Every human alive has their own baggage. Don’t coat your life in sadness or denial and learn to let that sh*t go. You can’t alter what has come before but you can chose to alter how you process it and move forward. Don’t let something negative define you, and trust that it was all part of making you the unique individual you are today. We can all learn from Taylor on this one!