100,000 Miles & Running: Life & Longevity

100,001 miles on speedometerToday my 2004 Honda Civic officially logged over 100,000 miles. Leading up to this milestone, I was planning to capture the magical moment and share it with my social network. Somehow I totally missed the 100k mark, and just so happened to glance at the dashboard as it was turning to 100,001. Oh well, that’s first world problem right?

As my car hit the 100k milestone, I reflected on the relatively problem-free duration of ownership. While somewhat dated (if you consider ten years to be old) the car has provided the reliability one expects from a Japanese brand. Although it doesn’t have all the bells and whistles I desire, the car meets my basic requirement, safely getting me from point A to point B. I’m certainly looking forward to getting another 100,000 miles out of the car (unless I upgrade to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class I’ve longed for) and I’m definitely going to step up the care I provide to the vehicle.

After thinking about my car’s milestone, I began correlating its journey with my own life journey. Just like the car, throughout my life I’ve lived through many ups and downs, sunshine and rain, good days and bad. There are even times when I’ve neglected maintaining my physical health just like I’ve often skipped maintenance checks for the car. For the most part, I’ve taken good care of the car from an operational perspective, but I’ve also gone long periods without taking time out to keep the car in pristine condition with regular car washes, etc. I’m also guilty of pushing myself so hard at times, that I’ve failed to maintain the physical and mental health needed to ensure longevity in life.

Even though I’ve only lived around 30 years, it feels like I’ve crammed a lifetime of stress and strain into that timeframe. I recognize that I’ve subjected myself to extreme levels of pressure in pursuit of my life’s goals. What I’m now realizing more that ever is the importance of regular maintenance and care needed for a sound mind and body. In order to survive another thirty years, I’ll have to more effectively balance my family responsibilities with career and academic pursuits.

Unlike the car I drive on a daily basis, there is no way to easily replace me, or anyone else for that matter. We’ve only been given one life to live. As the world continues to change and the pressures to do more with less continue to be pushed upon us, it is critical to focus on maintaining sound physical and mental health. While providing the maintenance needed to push my car to the next 100,000 miles, I’m also going to increase the level of attention I give to my own health. Hopefully by the time I upgrade to the luxurious E-Class Benz, my own physical and mental health will be considered premium or top-of-the-line.

Long Live Mandela!

“There is no passion to be found in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.” – Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela
Nelson Mandela

These are a few thoughts I was inspired to write on the day Nelson Mandela died. 

December 5, 2013 – The universe lost one of it’s greatest citizens today. A man who dared to believe in something greater than himself; freedom and equality for all South Africans. Mandela serves as a beacon of hope for those of us that seek to make the world a better place. While not perfect, Mandela found a way to channel his energy toward dismantling the oppressive apartheid movement that held a tight grip on his homeland. He figured out how to fight evil with kindness, and turned his anger into a relentless drive to transform the nation. Many generations will reap the benefit of Mandela’s efforts, and his sacrifices bore the fruit of racial harmony. Although he did not act alone in promoting the anti-apartheid movement, Mandela has become the global symbol for the movement’s success. If we remember nothing else about this civil rights giant, we must never forget his lesson in what can be achieved by dreaming big and remaining steadfast in the pursuit to make our dreams a reality.

Back To Blogging: Live, Inspire, Enjoy

Blogging Logo 1After a three year hiatus, I’ve decided that now is the time to continue blogging on a regular basis. When I created this blog, I was in the midst of preparing for major life changes. My wife and I were on the verge of relocating from the West coast to the East coast, a journey that would require us to complete a cross-country drive in three days. Also, I was transitioning from a career as an engineer to becoming a full-time doctoral student. Probably the greatest aspect of my changing life at that time was the upcoming birth of our first child. Needless to say, things were got crazy. As I struggled to adjust to life away from sunny San Diego (given the beautiful weather there, you too would have withdrawals), juggling my duties as a new father and first-year PhD student essentially killed off any free time I had for blogging.

While looking back over the past three years, I can truly say that those life changes led to a rapid evolution of my perspective on life and the world we live in. Gone are the days where I once denounced the “corporate drone” lifestyle and only encouraged entrepreneurial free spirit. The unique blend of capitalism and socialism in our society does require that someone starts the businesses that employ the masses. But, at the end of the day, we’re all occupying space on the blue marble (planet Earth) while trying to make a living and enjoy ourselves at the same time. My focus has always been on making a difference in the lives of others. However, I now concentrate my efforts on finding the right balance to be able to live, inspire, and enjoy simultaneously. It is always easier said than done, but I’m keeping my eye on the prize.

With that said, through blogging, I plan to continue influencing the masses with my thoughts, feelings and opinions on a myriad of issues. Hopefully you’ll follow along, learn something, and contribute to the dialogue along the way. Barring any other major life changes, you can look forward to my contributions to this blog on a more regular basis. That’s all for now. Until next time, live, inspire and enjoy!