Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Strong Self Esteem By Age Six

I received an email from Daniel Amen, M.D., from the Amen Clinics. The article I'm sharing raises the importance of a child's self-esteem. I remember my parents focused on physical development. They did a poor job developing my mental, emotional, and social skills. Physical development is the easiest during a child's early years since it involved eating right, drinking formula, and exercising.

The article is below. Be aware there is a sales pitch.

Help Your Child Improve Their Self Esteem by Daniel Amen, M.D., of Amen Clinics, Inc.

Monday, April 29, 2013

Unsubscribe That Email

Checking my email is easier and faster today compared to the first days of 2013. I started to unsubscribe emails. I clicked the unsubscribe link for one or two emails I don't care anymore a day. My process was slow, patient, and effective. I didn't unsubscribe all in one day because I wanted to be 100% confident I unsubscribe the emails I no longer want to read anymore. Another reason was most emails I don't care were in my inbox once or twice a week.

I'm guessing I subscribed at least 60 emails. Most of the emails were articles, online sales, deals, and news. I believe less than 10% of emails I unsubscribed I had to unsubscribe multiple times.

Unsubscribing works. I was doubtful unsubscribing doesn't work because unsubscribing meant my email address was valid; thereby, I receive more spam. I clicked all the emails I didn't care and deleted them in the past. I save time checking email by deleting much fewer emails today.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

It's Okay To Live At Home

There are millions of people who share a similar life situation like me. We are experiencing tough economic times. I'm unemployed and I live with my parents. It's like I'm George Costanza from Seinfeld. There is no shame living at home and being dependent on my parents. I'm no less an adult. I'm still a strong person. Bad luck, bad timing, and bad fortunes are part of my present life.

Living at home is easier with my parents who accept my current life conditions. Life is easier when I live my life as if I'm independent. I help out around the house including cleaning the dishes, vacuuming, cooking, and doing the laundry. These are house chores I'm responsible if I lived on my own. I take care of my body. I work out at the gym, practice good hygiene, and eat healthy. I take care of my car including oil changes and routine maintenance. I'm responsible for my appearance such as wearing appropriate clothes, shaving, and monthly haircuts. I take the initiative to maintain my job knowledge and learn new job skills taking online classes.

I still have a life. I'm dating a girl. I have friends I spend time to have fun. I read books. I watch movies and some television series. I listen to music. I visit new places such as hiking new trails. I experience new experiences and find new adventures. Life is never on a complete pause living at home.

I'm not lazy sitting on a sofa and watching television. I'm not playing video games in the late night and waking up late. I'm a good person and a good son who shows, acts, and behaves well and makes good choices. I'm fortunate and lucky I live with my parents such that I can focus on finding a job. My home is easier to live as long as I make my parent's life easier. I know living at home is temporarily. I move out and live independently one day. I experience a big break with luck and timing in my favor soon. I must be patient.

It's okay to live at home. Don't take the generous offer for granted.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

I Have Hope

I feel optimistic today. One of these days I work, live in my own place, expand my circle of friends, make new friends, help other people, and improve my lifestyle. My life moves forward at a faster pace that includes more new adventures, more new experiences, and gaining more knowledge and wisdom than being unemployed and living at home. The bottom line is I make my own choices, live a consistent life, and control more of my life in time.

I'm doing the best I can. I'm staying positive. I'm job searching every weekday. I work out at the gym. I'm taking online classes. I'm a good person towards my girlfriend, family and friends. They help me when I have problems. I get better every day. I learn something new. There is a new experience I try. I open myself up when I meet new people.

Tomorrow is another day. I make every day productive. Take a deep breath, relax, have some fun, and live life. Don't take life for granted. I never go down. I'm going up hereafter. Stay positive. I earn everything I work for.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Time Out And Refocus

2013 is going by really fast. The month of May begins next week. Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming soon faster than a blink of an eye. The days are going by fast in today's information age. Technology is simulating our brains with information daily. We live in a fast pace society. I find it difficult to be bored. I fail to understand some people saying they're bored.

I observe the people I interact with recently have been making more mistakes, stressing out, losing concentrating, and forgetting. Me, too. I have been completing my activities such as job searching, workout out at the gym, and cooking; however, I feel I'm taking longer to complete and committing more mistakes with less than satisfactory results. Perhaps, that's why I feel time is going by fast because I'm being inefficient. I spend more time on an activity resulting in completing fewer total activities daily. I feel frustration for doing little, stress for my mistakes, and disappointment I should have completed more.

Relax, take a break, take a time out, take a deep breath, and refocus. Turn off your brain. Turn off your senses. Free yourself. Reset your life. I suggest the simplest way to take a time out and refocus is sleep. No playing video games, no reading books, no watching television, no eating sweets, and no physical activity. Separate yourself from the world on a bed.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Time Moves Forward, Are You?

There are people who move forward in life like we are marking off checkboxes in our lives. We graduate high school, graduate college, find a job, find love, get married, raise children, buy a home, get promoted, win a contract, win a championship, master a skill, learn something new, invent something new, finish a project, buy a car, start a business, accomplish a milestone, visit a foreign country, win a contest, etc. We check off as much as we can, how appropriate they affect our lives, the timing, and whether we choose what we want and what we don't want in our lives.

On the other hand, there are setbacks that either slows down or moves backwards. Divorce, layoff, business goes bankrupt, lose a contract, fail an entrance exam, natural disaster, a car accident, health problems, a lawsuit, delay in graduation, family problems, death of a close person, etc. We can overcome setbacks. We can get stronger, learn from the mistakes, and acquire wisdom not to repeat the mistakes. The knowledge and wisdom help us handle the next time the setback happens. We move forward again when the setbacks are successfully overcome.

My life is moving forward slowly at best. I'm proactively job searching daily. I'm motivated to find a job to move my life forward at a normal pace. I have many checkboxes that needs to be marked including finding a job, moving out and living on my own, meeting more new people, visiting Great Britain for my first European vacation, and investing. People don't see me sitting on a chair watching television or playing video games at least eight hours a day. I read books to increase my knowledge and wisdom, workout at the gym to maintain a good healthy lifestyle, cook and clean to help out with my parents at home, and spend time with my girlfriend and friends to maintain a social life all when I'm not job searching. My supplemental job searching aids are taking online classes and reading books on job skills such as Excel, PowerPoint, and Crystal Reports.

I know people who're new parents for the first time, couples engaged to be married, individuals who found new and/or better jobs, students graduating college, parents' children going to college, friends going on a big vacation, and people achieving personal big goals such that it's worth writing home to their parents. Their lives are moving forward.

Benjamin Franklin said, "The only things certain in life are death and taxes." Everyone can say tomorrow is pretty much certain. Time moves forward. We age one day closer to death. Are you moving forward with time?

I'm moving forward with time. My unemployment is a setback. I'm learning, getting stronger, being more mature and professional, and wising up. I'm moving backwards if I sit around the house complaining and being angry. I make time everyday doing whatever I need to move my life forward again. I'm open to anything, anywhere, anyhow, and anyway possible I must to succeed in life.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Most Interesting Man In The World Cinco De Mayo

I heard the latest radio commercial from a baseball game. The commercial was originally aired in 2012. The 2013 commercial contains a shorter version of 2012 because there is another advertisement at the end. Here are the quotes from 2012 and 2013:

*The line for his Cinco de Mayo party starts forming on Ocho de Febrero.

*When he makes refried beans, he only has to fry them once.

*His 10 gallon hat holds approximately 13 gallons.

*He can tune a moroccan.

*He has three little black books, just for women named "Juanita".

*It's been said that his guacamole inspired the phase, "Holy Guacamole".

*His pinatas fight back.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Finishing 2012 Pics

Here are the last pictures from my cell phone in 2012. We're ending April soon. 2013 is going by fast.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Top Ten Thumbs Up Moments

Film critic Roger Ebert died on Apr 4, 2013. Ebert had cancer in his thyroid and salivary glands. Ebert and co-host Gene Siskel were known for giving thumbs up or thumbs down when reviewing movies on their show Siskel & Ebert At The Movies. Siskel died in 1999. Siskel and Ebert's "Two Thumbs Up" inspired me for my latest top ten.

These thumbs up moments told me I did well, I approve, and I done it outstanding. I made good choices. I performed at my best. My actions were well thought. The results were positive, favorable, and beneficial mostly for the long term. Vacations are good examples of thumbs up moments. Take a look at the pictures below:

These top ten thumbs up also succeeded. Here we go:

10. My Desk Fan (July 2005). I purchased a fan to cool my room for the late spring, summer, and early fall seasons. My room is on the second floor. There have been countless days the fan was enough to cool my room instead of turning on the home air conditioning system. The fan saved money from the utilities.

9. Fastrak (Nov 2009). Fastrak is an electronic device to pay tolls for bridges and toll roads. Automobiles with Fastrak drive through the toll plaza without stopping to pay the toll. I wanted to avoid stopping at the toll plaza.. My family disapproved Fastrak because we rarely drive on the bridges. We used it for the first time in Dec. They loved it. My sister purchased a Fastrak for herself.

8. Good Grades (Fall 1996). My best semester at San Jose State was Fall 1996 when I attended classes two days a week and earned three A's and one B.

7. eBay (Sept 2002). I started buying and selling on eBay. I sold personal junk and purchased great deals online. I started a half.com account 1.5 years later.

6. Upgrade Edward Elric Cosplay (Mar 2010). I purchased a new pair of leather pants and boots for my Edward Elric cosplay. The results were a more accurate cosplay.

5. Self Taught Microsoft Access (Apr 1998). I learned Access while I was job searching after I graduated San Jose State University. Access was important because it helped me get hire for my second job.

4. Paul McCartney's Up And Coming Tour (July 2010). I missed Paul McCartney when he performed at the San Jose Arena in 2005. I wasn't going to make the same mistake twice. I attended his concert when his band visited AT&T Park in San Francisco. One big check off my life list.

3. Movies, Movies, And Movies (2008-2011). I started purchasing DVD movies to increase my library. The first DVDs were The Godfather I, II, and III DVD box set at Costco. Fry's Electronics sold $3.99 DVDs for which I purchased Revenge Of The Nerds, Mr. Mom, The Graduate, Mad Max, Die Hard, X-Men II, and Transporter 2. When I visited Victoria, British Columbia, I purchased Bullitt, The Departed, and A View To A Kill. I purchased Hot Fuzz, Goodfellas, and Batman Begins for $3.99 on Black Friday. And I purchased The 40 Year Old Virgin and Ben Hur during the Christmas holidays.

I started the movie of the week in Fall 2010 quarter at De Anza College. I rented a DVD from the library. I regretted I should have rented movies earlier in the year. Some of my favorites included One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Midnight Cowboy, Rear Window, and Singin’ In The Rain.

2. Shall We Ballroom Dance (Jan 2009). My sister danced competitively as an amateur. She introduced me to ballroom dancing. I took classes at De Anza College. I had lots of fun, met lots of people, and danced outside the classroom for some social outings. I want to continue taking lessons and dancing.

1. Mahjong (Riichi) A Second Try (Oct 2009). A friend challenged me to learn Mahjong (Riichi) again after quitting in 2007. I won my first hand the next time I played and I won my first game in July 2010. I'm looking forward to play for the rest of my life. It's a great social game.

Sunday, April 07, 2013

Caught Up For Real

I devoted Sat Mar 30 to Wed Apr 3 to catch up on my life. The five days also included improving my life and getting back to past life habits. I took a break from job searching and online classes. The catch up was like I have no homework for a three day weekend. Here was what I completed:

*Communication On The Web. I caught up on emails, blogging, and Twitter.

*Monthly Routines. I cleaned the washer with bleach, changed my bed sheets, and backed up my computer files. I vacuumed the house and cleaned the kitchen floor. I emptied the vacuum container and cleaned the vacuum filter.

*Improving My Life And Around Me. I purchased a mop to clean the kitchen floors. I forgot the last time the kitchen floor was cleaned. I also purchased a Brita water pitcher and filters to stop buying water from the grocery stores. The one gallon containers were one less clutter in the house. And I sharpened the scissors.

*The New Things In My Life. I used the Razor Renew, a leather and suede strip, to re-sharpen razor blades. It works. I started sleeping on 500 thread count bed sheets I received from Christmas 2012. And I transferred my 2002-2006 photos from their individual photo packs to a photo album. I have more room in my dresser.

*Safety Checks On Time Changes. Daylight Savings Time started on Sun Mar 10. I checked the home first aid kit for expiration dates on medications. I also checked smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, and flashlight batteries.

*Television Entertainment. I finished watching The Big Bang Theory Season 1. I watched Taken 2 and Gone With The Wind movies. And I caught up with Space Brothers and finished Kotoura-san and Shinsekai Yori anime series in a marathon format.

*Music Entertainment. I added more songs to my mp3 player I listen at the gym. Most of the songs were from the Les Miserables musical.

*Get Back. I started cooking with the George Foreman grill after a long hiatus. The grill is back as another way to cook meals for the family.

*Household Errands. Washed dishes, completed laundry, and took out the trash.

*A Personal Note On Working Out. I experienced back pain on my upper right and shoulder blade on Sun Mar 10. My workouts were cardio between Mon Mar 11 and Sat Mar 23. I temporarily stopped working out on Sun Mar 24 to today.

I look forward to return to the gym starting on Thur Apr 11. I feel my rest is completed. It's time to do it starting off with stronger and more courageous workouts include running and a little heavier lifting. However, I keep my back pain in my mind since this is the first time I experience the back pain injury, recovery, and returning back to the gym. I don't know how I turn out.

*Worth Mentioning. I finished reading The Time Machine by H.G. Wells on Fri Mar 29.

The keys completing and catching up on the above were staying focus, making an effort, prioritize & reprioritize, and timing. These factors are important to live life daily. We make adjustments given the timing and situation. Focus is important to complete the present task in front of you. Concentrate and avoid distractions.

I look forward to resume my job search and completing my online classes--my weekday schedule. I must take on less activities and responsibilities since finding a job is top priority.

Thursday, April 04, 2013

What Is Wrong With This Picture?

The picture above me was taken in 2003. I looked terrible. My physical appearance, my clothes, and my smile were wrong; however, they portrayed who I was accurately. I promise myself I never be that Raymond Mar above. I explain in detail below:

*Hair. I was lazy taking care of my hair. I never used conditioner. My parents never used conditioner when I was a child. I wondered throughout my childhood and high school how my classmates kept their hair in control in additional to hair spray.

In Aug 2004, I choose to have a buzz cut. I look younger. I save time taking care of my hair since I don't need to comb it. I get a haircut once a month.

*Face. I continued to have acne in my adulthood. I could get three or more pimples at one time. I hate it. I looked ugly. The blackheads and whiteheads were worse.

In Feb 2009, I requested my dermatologist to prescribe Accutane. I applied multiple topical creams, to my dissatisfaction, from 2005. My face looks much better today after 14 months of treatment. An occasional acne appears on my face. I have to apply another topical cream to keep the blackheads and whiteheads in control.

*Smile. I like to smile. I never realized my smile was bad looking. My lower lip hung down and my teeth were crooked and jammed together.

In Jan 2007, my orthodontist installed braces on my teeth. My treatment lasted 31 months. My smile is my best looking smile ever. I have less worry about future dental problems. Cleaning and maintenance are easier with aligned teeth with plenty of space in between.

*Clothing. I just put on a white t-shirt. Too cheap and too lazy. I wore hiking shoes and long socks for social outings. Bad choices. The shorts were okay.

In Oct 2008, I made changes to my wardrobe. I purchased new shirts, new slacks, new jeans, new shorts, new socks, new shoes, and new jackets. The shirts included buttons and collars. No more plain white t-shirts and polo shirts. I looked terrible in polo shirts. The slacks and jeans were new to replace the worn outs. The shorts were longer in length, relax fit, and flat instead of pleated. Socks were short length. The shoes were worn at appropriate outings: casual shoes for socializing, hiking shoes for hiking, and cross trainers for workout out at the gym. And I purchased multiple jackets all in-style appropriate for the weather conditions and the outings. My old jacket I worn too many times looked outdated.

*Watch. I wore a black band digital watch since high school for most of my life. On the one hand, it was practical with timer, countdown, alarm, and date. On the other hand, nobody wears a digital watch to a fancy restaurant or an interview with a suit.

In Dec 2008, I purchased my first fine watch to show my elegance and my fashion sense.

These improvements show the real Raymond Mar. I'm a person who cares about my appearances. I stay in physical shape and prevent obesity working out at the gym. I want people to see me as a person who's approachable, friendly, sociable, intelligent, and a good guy. My appearance from the photo above fails to portray who I am. I don't want people seeing me as lazy, retarded, an embarrassment, and a loner with no life.

Appearances are important. We dress, communicate, think, act, and behave who we are. Your inside is just as important as your outside, and vice versa. Make an honest effort you appearance portrays who you really are. If you don't like your inside and/or outside, then make changes. I was successful. I continue to make changes to get better, stronger, and wiser.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

Accutane Day 1,518

My dermatologist prescribed my Tretinoin in Dec 2012. I stopped using Ziana. His instruction was apply Tretinoin nightly before bedtime.

I stopped applying Tretinoin for the last three weeks. The very dry weather caused dryness on my skin. I experienced face redness four weeks ago because I applied Tretinoin three times. Fortunately, I experienced one acne. The blackheads and whiteheads continue on my nose and cheeks. No flare ups.

I started applying Tretinoin once or twice a week yesterday. It's hard to establish a consistent schedule because I can't apply Tretinoin when my face is too dry. I don't want to apply Tretinoin on two consecutive days.

Tuesday, April 02, 2013

The Three C's: Choices, Consistency, Control

Imagine a triangle with each word on each side: choices, consistency, and control. I believe the three C words are the keys to success in anything from education, business, sports, and arts. I adapt the three Cs when I start working again. My daily life includes the three Cs. They show my maturity and my growing wisdom. Life has been better. I elaborate on the three Cs:

Choices. I attended an all day educational teachers seminar in college. My first career choice was being a high school mathematics teacher. The professor told all the undergraduates and student teachers a person is an adult when he or she can make their own choices.

I want to add an adult is wise and mature when they make good choices. People must avoid making bad choices to ruin their lives. I don't need to give examples of bad choices because they're obvious. The better choices we make, the better we take care of our body, mind, and spirit. The family and friends in our lives are happy we're making good choices, and that is a quality to meet new people.

Consistency. We produce, succeed, and accomplish a reasonable number of assignments, projects, and goals in a certain period of time. We avoid erratic spikes and falls. There is no such thing as being too hot and being too cold. Consistency is not living a routine life. We experience slumps, short-comings, delays, and mistakes. Nobody is perfect. The key is recovering or bouncing back from these quickly to refocus and get back to your optimal performance.

Control. Think about the most successful people. One attribute they have is control. They control their results, their successes, their actions, their subordinates, their decisions, and their thinking. It's like nobody controls them; they're in complete control. The more aspects we can control in our lives, the better we guide the outcomes to our favor, our advantage, and our desired result. A person having more control of their life is like a child moving out of their parent's house. The child controls when he or she wakes up, the food eaten, the friends they invite to their house, the clothes worn, and when he or she goes to sleep.

Follow the three C's. Practice and adapt the three C's. I promise life is better making your own choices, being consistency at everything you do, and controlling as many circumstances.

Monday, April 01, 2013

Top Ten April Moments

Today's is not April Fool's Day for today's blog. April is cool for me. The first day of spring is March 21; however, my spring begins later. It's a good spring from these moments below. My spring is great when the weather is cooler than normal because I sweat and tan much easier than an average human. We should start getting more active outdoors. Smell the flowers, see the leaves from the trees grow, bring out the t-shirts and shorts, hear the birds cheep, and enjoy the walking or hiking which is number two in my top ten. On the other hand, being indoors is cool, too, as long as we are out of the house. Here are my top ten:

10. RISK Legacy Board Game (2012). I won my first RISK board game. It happened to be RISK Legacy.

9. Karaoke (2011). I was invited to sing karaoke with a group of friends. I had fun singing Beatles songs.

8. Fanime April Fool's Gathering (2006). I attended a Fanime forum gathering on April Fool's Day to celebrate a person's birthday at Kelly Park in San Jose. I'm still friends with some of them.

7. My First Girlfriend (1991). I met my first girlfriend in high school. I was a junior and she was a freshmen.

6. Barry Bonds Hit Home Runs (2002). My dad, brother, sister in-law, and I attended a San Francisco Giants game. Bonds' two home runs went into McCovey Cove in the Giants 2002 National League Champions season.

5. San Francisco Cherry Blossom Festival (2006, 2008, 2010). The anime and video game cosplayers have a section and float in the main parade. 2006 was my first festival I participated. I appeared on the Japan Video's cosplay photo board in 2008 cosplaying Toushiro Hitsugaya from Bleach. And I upgraded my Edward Elric from Fullmetal Alchemist cosplay wearing leather pants in 2010. I was approached from a group of Japanese foreigners who wanted a group picture with me. I appeared on Japan Video's cosplay photo board for a second time.

I walked in the parade from 2006-2011.

4. De Anza College (2009). I attended De Anza College during the Spring quarter for the first time taking Strength Development and Social Dancing classes. I started taking Accounting classes in Fall 2009.

3. Crystal Reports XI Training (2006). I went to San Francisco to attend a two day training course. I enjoyed my days walking around the city after classes.

2. Hiking (2009, 2010, 2011). I walked in new trails for the first time. They were Uvas Canyon in Morgan Hill, CA, Point Lobos in Carmel, CA, Pinnacles National Park in Paicines, CA, and Stanford University's The Dish in Palo Alto, CA. Uvas Canyon was the first time I hiked since 1995 at Yosemite National Park.

1. My First Visit To HP Pavilion (2011). There were multiple firsts which were my first time entering inside the arena, my first San Jose Sharks hockey game, my first playoff game in major league sports, my first playoff overtime, and my first playoff win.