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What does the heart seek?

By 07/09/20104 Comments

I’m in one of those reflective moods again. Every now and then, I ponder about life, the meaning of it, and what is my purpose in this world. In the past, I’ve blogged about issues like these on my personal blog, but never on the Stories blog before. It’s always difficult to be open and vulnerable to others, but I do believe in being authentic.

I’m constantly busy. This year was a really hectic year for me, with the launch of Stories as a brand (wow, I can’t believe it’s been 8 months already!). In the midst of running a business, selling my house, traveling, buying a new house, renovating the new house… I hardly had time to breathe. But today, I had to take a moment to reflect. What am I working so hard for?

People say that it’s either one of these things that motivate you in life – money, fame, or a cause greater than yourself. If I am being completely honest with myself, I think I’d like to be well-known. I’d like to know that I am successful in my business. I want to shoot more, be excited about new projects, be a photographer in demand…

But all for… ? What?

What is the level of success?

What am I building?

It brings me great satisfaction to know that the work I produce brings so much joy to others. Part of my job satisfaction comes from knowing that I am building a legacy of images – records of people’s lives and a moment in history. Photography connects people. And I’m so amazed that I have been given this blessed opportunity to bring people together.

I guess I am reminded today that my purpose in life should never be solely about myself. In this quest for success, I must never lose my soul.

Children sharing a meal in Myanmar, taken during my travels in 2007.

Join the discussion 4 Comments

  • Mich says:

    I guess everyone’s motivation is different and at times we get lost in the midst of it. Its good to sometimes to just stop doing whatever we are doing and just look around and ask the question you’ve asked.

    Why the heck do I want to be a photographer (or anything for that matter) so badly? For what … For me, i would like to create and capture that moment in time, that would never be again …

  • Wee Hoong says:

    Grace, you have not let us know what is your ultimate motivation and what your heart seeks in your post. Sum it up in a sentence for us! :)

  • Pru says:

    Grace, thank you for sharing… I’m encouraged!
    What I see in you is the spirit of excellence and humility in all the works you produce. You are building something precious for the next generation to hold on to. As you do your job, you are creating history! :)

    I always try to remember that my job does not determine my identity and worth. It’s a sad thing to be so attached to my job title that if one day it is being stripped away from me, I would not know who I am anymore. I think that’s quite important especially when we know that what’s given to us, can be taken away anytime. :)

  • Grace Tan says:

    Thanks for sharing, Mich. Yup, we need to stop ourselves every now and then to ask the ‘difficult’ questions.

    Wee Hoong… I am still discovering. At this moment in time, life to me is about doing what you love most, passionately, while at the same time, loving people around you and God.

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