The Happiest Days in One’s Life

What are the happiest days in one’s life? School supervisor Brother Joseph told us today that these days were definitely the days in one’s secondary school life. Brother Joseph encouraged us to be happy when coming to study in SFXC not simply because this is a great school, but also because of the free spirit that so characterizes our school. In addition, the highly qualified and caring teachers stationing here make us proud to be a Xaverian. But to overcome the somewhat tedious side of our school life, like finishing assignments and sitting exams, Brother Joseph offered us three words starting with A’s: Attitude, Ask and Active. If we take this advice of bringing positive attitudes to school, asking questions when we encounter learning difficulties and actively involving ourselves in all kinds of school activity, secondary school life will definitely be the happiest days in our future memories.

Concern for Others

Today, Mr. Iu urged us to show concerns beyond our personal interests using the tragedy of Kitty Genovese’s Murder. The bone-chilling story perfectly illustrated the concept of Bystander Effect, which explained the human behavior of inaction in light of others’ needs. Although we don’t often see the tragic consequence of human apathy like Kitty Genovese’s Murder, we experience Bystander Effect in our school community every day. Mr. Iu shared with us how he had witnessed students walking pass litter on the playground as it was invisible or feeling indifferent when a charity donation box was passed among them. As we are all in a time of great needs, especially emotionally, let’s take heed of Mr. Iu’s appeal: “be sensitive to other’s needs and offer help”. Keep an eye out for your fellow Xaverians!

The Self-Discipline Muscle

Today, Mr. Pong shared with us his insights on self-discipline using weight training as an analogy. His secret in building the self-discipline muscle is to push your limits in self-discipline bit by bit on a regular basis. As we all possess a certain level of self-discipline, we should challenge ourselves just a few paces beyond our comfort zones and repeat consistently. In time, our ability in self-control will improve like trained muscles. According to Mr. Pong, if you spend more than 2 hours gaming daily instead of revising school work, it is impossible for you to convert all those gaming hours to studying immediately. However, you can start with 1-hour or even 30-minute conversion daily for one week and slowly make progress from there.

As we all know that people with high level of self-discipline are usually more successful in all everything they do, let’s start training our self-discipline muscle today. Waste no time Xaverians, the final exam is nigh!

Be Merciful

“Dear friends, be merciful”, pleaded Brother Joseph at the end of his morning weekly message. His speech was no mere preaching or an elderly person’s storytelling; though, he did tell us a biblical story – the prodigal son – in the perspective of the merciful father. Brother Joseph’s message was a call to action for us all to respond to this Jubilee year of Mercy. We were given advice about the actions we could take. They could be merciful acts to provide physical needs, such as food for the hungry. On the other hand, merciful acts could also be spiritual in nature, such as comforting broken hearts, forgiving offenses and praying for those in need, all of which we can perform readily on a daily basis. So let us heed the call and “Be Merciful”. Even a little act of mercy can make a big difference in somebody’s life.

Delayed Gratification

This morning, Mr. Shing introduced to us an ability we rarely talked about – the delayed gratification – the ability to resist temptation for immediate pleasure in exchange for a better reward in the future. Mr. Shing observed that the popular culture nowadays was promoting immediate gratification in the expense of our future, like borrowing money to satisfy our nonessential needs. This trend is harmful to our personal development and future success. As pointed out by various examples in Mr. Shing’s message and numerous research studies in psychology, students who could delay their desires for immediate gratification were much more likely to be successful. You might think choosing to study before exams instead of gaming away your revision time is an easy decision. It actually requires an ability that takes effort and patience to build up when we are still young. Let’s take this message to our hearts and cultivate delayed gratification so our minor sacrifices at the moment can be translated into bigger rewards in the future.

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