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by Jennie M. Xue

Life is a series of choices between two extremities ­– birth and death. Every single thing, from thoughts, ideas, actions, to what you wear are based on choices you make.

Reality is what you make of it. Whatever you think is right. If you think you’re poor, you’re right. If you think you’re rich, you’re right. If you think you have enough, you’re right. If you think you don’t have enough, you’re right. If you think you have abundance, you’re right. If you think you live in scarcity, you’re right too.

If I wear an Hermes bag, then I’m acknowledging that I succumb to the notion of the whole world comprising scarce things, which justifies the reason why I need to pay tens of thousand of dollars for a piece of handbag.

In terms of quality, I trust that many other lower-priced brands are equally good or better than this ultra-expensive brand. Logically speaking, this means there is no other “benefit” for wearing an Hermes purse other than for perpetuating the brand’s mystical belief. No magic would occur whether you’re wearing a Hermes or not.

This choice is based on a personal belief, not on personal purchasing capacity. However, many of my friends do wear authentic and not-so-authentic Hermes purses, which is totally fine with me. Your choice is yours and none of my business.

I personally believe that we all live in abundance. “Abundance” here is a philosophical notion of human being’s capacity in the making of their best selves. I’m not talking about non-renewable energy sources, like fossil fuel and coal, however, which, unfortunately, remain limited.

This mindset serves as a “nuclear reactor” whenever you need to tap into a gargantuan source of energy. Just like the nuclear power, your inner power is unlimited. You can magnify it exponentially with a few simple things. Here are my own versions of “things that work for me whenever I need to be my best self.”

First, be aware of your own state of mind. Maintain a “calm and assertive” state of mind. Alert, but relaxed. In abundance. You know what you’re doing and where you’re going. You control your own emotion and reason wins.

Second, be aware of your surrounding, which refers to mental, physical, and emotional environments. If possible, only be with people who have proven themselves to be trustworthy and who have an “abundance” state of mind. These people are usually positive, generous and always see the best in others.

Third, be aware of how things work. Simple theories and principles most likely work in most circumstances, like 80/20, what goes around will come around, a yin in every yang, confidence isn’t a good indication of competence, and the world is equal and unequal at the same time. Once you’ve mastered how they influence your thoughts and actions, you’d know how to behave and carry yourself to be your best self.

Fourth, master a few skills extremely well and apply them in a way that only a true master can. Recognize your strengths and weaknesses. Amplify your strengths by working on them days in and days out. Understand that your weaknesses may change and become better over time. The more you practice, the better your skills are. And, oh yeah, talents are overrated.

Fifth, make a wish, be hopeful, and let nature and time take care of things. Life goes on. Every hardship and low point in life will eventually pass. In the end, there is equilibrium, a state of “normalcy,” albeit the possible “new normal.” You will survive. There is no doubt about it. Because every moment is fleeting and in “the river of life” the logs will eventually drift to the ocean. One way or the other.

I don’t wear Hermes because of my belief that I live in abundance. It’s a good reminder to myself that the best things are not expensive, but free. Like unconditional love for humanity.[], December 11, 2014

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