Thursday, July 29, 2010


I’m an extrovert working daily in an introvert’s heaven – my home office. No distractions. No friendly banter. No interruptions. No energy…

Thankfully, my recent trip to NYC was an amazing double shot of espresso. The movement, the activity, the people – it’s like life being poured back into me. Oh introverts in New York, how do you do it?

It’s also amazing how much the streets of New York remind me of the streets of Shanghai. The hustle and bustle. The late-night eats. The super-convenient subway that moves more than an inch per minute (sorry Chicago El, I’m just not impressed). And the Chinatown hair washes (xitou) – truly icing on the cake.

New energy, new life comes from being in the middle of such a lively place and from the sweet reminders of a place I used to call home. The novelty, the vivacity and the memories evoked by New York City were much needed for my own personal sanity.

Mental energy is not simply a whimsical feeling – it sustains us, motivates us and leads to our own well-being. When you’re feeling drained, what brings you back to life? For me it’s fresh, new experiences, high-energy, bustling environments and moments of nostalgia. What is it for you? A quiet evening with a good book? A cup of coffee with a good friend? Hosting a party and inviting all your neighbors? Whatever it is, find time for it in your life!

Now back in my home office, I close my eyes and call upon those feelings. Envisioning myself in Times Square, I draw in the energy once again. I think fondly back to reconnecting with best friends, to meeting colleagues for the first time, to simply getting lost in the crowds. Not quite as energizing as the real thing, but enough to get me through the work day.

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