Like the Flowing River

Like The Flowing River by Paulo Coelho

I’m not just a mother, a traveler and an entrepreneur. I am also a bookworm. I have a memory of myself as early as age ten spending hours and hours at the library because I wanted to read books from Astronomy (I decided at that young age that I was going to be an astronaut, hehehe) to cookbooks to architecture and the usual fairy tales. In short, I have already read a ton of books in my lifetime and I’d like to share here those which influenced me whether in a big or small way and has helped me changed my life for the better.

Having said that, Paulo Coelho is one of my all-time favorite authors. I have all of his books and those which I find inspirational and moving, and which I think could help my readers in one way or another better their quality of life, I will blog about here.

This book by Paulo Coelho, Like The Flowing River, is unlike his usual novels. Instead, he compiled his most cherished reflections and short stories written from 1998 to 2005 and came up with Like The Flowing River. “These are powerful tales of living and dying, of destiny and choice, of love lost and found. Sometimes humorous, sometimes serious, but always profound…”

Let me show to you some of my favorite snippets from this book:

 

A January Day in 2005 (page 81-83)

“Today I have absolutely nothing that requires my attention… I have a long hard struggle not to get up… I experience terrible feelings of anxiety but I m determined to stay here doing nothing… Gradually, the anxiety gives way to contemplation and I start to listen to my soul. It has been longing to speak to me but I’m always too busy… I’m not doing anything, and yet I’m also doing the most important thing a man can do: I’m listening to what I needed to hear from myself.”

I used to be the type of person who can’t sit still. I felt guilty every time I did nothing so I made plans and schedules and more often than not, I followed them, so I can fill the void my heart had before, to feel more alive and important. That was prior to bebe Hanz coming into my life. And now that he’s here, I further learned that it’s important to lay still sometimes and just do nothing, if only to relax, contemplate and listen to myself. I saw this in bebe Hanz. After all, he is a guy and according to scientific studies, a man’s brain is wired differently. They can think about nothing and still live. It was a puzzle to me at first because a woman’s brain tend to think of everything. It’s forever busy and it just won’t stop thinking. But perhaps, this is the greatest thing of all — to be able to stop, listen to my soul, my heart, my thoughts — and see what I have to say. Try it! It will do wonders to your heart, mind, body and soul.

Travelling Differently (page 132-134)

  1. Avoid museums.
  2. Hang out in bars.
  3. Be open.
  4. Try to travel alone – or if you are married, with your spouse.
  5. Don’t compare.
  6. Understand that everyone understands you.
  7. Don’t buy too much.
  8. Don’t try to see the world in a month.
  9. A journey is an adventure.

Wow! I’ve already done everything on that list! I’ve already traveled alone numerous times and I’ve traveled with my life partner as well. (I’m in the process of drafting my travel diaries and this coming week I’ll start publishing them.)  We’ve also hung out in bars and came to know some locals and other tourists along the way. And of course, we try as much as possible to be open and to see our travels as adventures and not just as a journey in itself. I’ve also stopped buying so much since I got pregnant. If before I’d buy a dozen shoes in one go and shop like there’s no tomorrow, now, I save up for the future and for more travels with our baby. As for the others on the list, check! How about you?

In The Midst of War (page 170)

“To pass the time, they started talking about what they would like  to eat… he said: “I’d like to eat an apple”, knowing that, because of rationing, it was impossible to find any fruit at all. At that precise moment, they heard a noise, and a beautiful, shiny apple rolled into the room and stopped in front of him!”

There were many times when I wished something would happen to me like when I start missing doing acting stints on TV and theater. Then a day or two after, my agent would call me or text me that there’s a VTR waiting for me. Sometimes I go, sometimes I don’t coz of lack of time especially when it’s during work week. Coincidence? Then just last week, I suddenly had this feeling that I missed attending events. Then lo and behold my friend Rein who is now working for one of the PR agencies here in Manila invited me to Celergen’s product launch at City of Dreams. I was really excited to go. Unfortunately, my schedule is up to baby Tuz. He was all fussy this weekend so I was not able to go. I really felt bad about that but of course, motherhood comes first on my list. Nevertheless, I think it’s God’s way of telling me that all my dreams are just there. Everything I want is just within my reach no matter how small or big. It’s up to me whether I’d grab them or not. And of course, positive thinking always helps.

There’s still more in this book, but for now, I’ll stop here. May you have a beautiful week ahead full of  wonderful blessings. (^_^)

To be continued…

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