By Ng Sinn Yi

Sometimes we go about our busy daily lives losing sight of what’s happening right in front of us. I was fortunate enough to realize this, amongst other things, on a short trip to Kuala Sepetang, Taiping.

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Here are a few things that have broaden my approach towards life.

  1. To be curious and move out of my comfort zone

I have gotten so accustomed to taking things at face value that I have stopped asking specific questions that would broaden my mind or for me to gain new knowledge from others. On this trip I realised that I needed to be curious and ask all the questions that could open up a whole new world for me. It forces me to look at things in a different perspective and many a times, people will surprise you with their stories and experiences that they are willing to share. For me, the only barrier between asking questions and getting answers is overcoming my shyness and breaking out from my comfort zone.

  1. To make the best out of any situation

It was humbling to hear the stories of the people who braved all the
challenges in their lives and their business to survive. As many of them are in the agriculture line, climate change has had dire effect on their livelihood. For example, the amount of cockles collected used to be more than a thousand gunny sacks a day. But has since fallen to less than a hundred. Yet, they persevere through it by taking on more jobs to support themselves.

  1. To be less selfish

The daily rat race has made us rather disconnected with one another. We usually go our own way and do our own things with no regard for anyone else especially to strangers. Here, in Kuala Sepetang, I’ve experienced the most heart-warming hospitality that the people we met for the first time have extended to us. They went out of their way to make sure we were comfortable, taking the time to explain to us in detail about their work, and making sure we were well fed!

It has inspired me to be a better person in terms of consideration and thoughtfulness that I should extend to others and not to just want to get ahead in life. And, bearing in mind a quote from Star War’s wise master Yoda “Be mindful of the future but not at the expense of the moment”.