The inspiration to start The Thought Experiment was born from a desire to use my ability to write to do some good in the world. I thought the best way to do that was to start a website (well, a blog, really) to share my view on many issues close to my heart. Despite having zero experience in creating, designing and running a website, I decided to take the plunge, and so The Thought Experiment came into existence.
It has been almost six years since then, and this is the 51st article. The realization that I’d created 50 articles of content (I’m cheating because I’m counting three which were generously written by guests) was astounding to me. I had never imagined that I would have so much to write about so many things. This is a website run by a single person who does this as a hobby, and so the rate of content generation could never compare to sites like Mothership.
And that’s perfectly okay.
When most people think of websites, they think of those that churn out articles by the day, with thousands to tens of thousands of readers and clicks. Not so for me. I never mastered SEO or any other internet wizardry that would allow my site to go viral. It goes without saying that I don’t earn a single cent from this website either – in fact, I pay a fee to register this domain name every year, simply because I think it looks better without the word “wordpress” in the address.
In terms of Internet success, it would be easy to characterize my site as a failure. I’ve been here for 6 years and I’ve only managed to get almost 10,000 hits. No, not 10,000 hits per day. 10,000 hits over 6 years.
And that’s perfectly okay.
What I’m trying to get at is that our current society is addicted to a false concept of success. The current mantra goes like this: If you do something, you better be damn good at it, otherwise you’ll just be overshadowed by others. If you start a business, you better take it to IPO and get millions, or you’re a failure. If you get into chess, you better reach Grandmaster level, or you’re a failure. And if you start a website, it better be one of the top searches in Google, or you’re a failure.
And so the lesson we all subconsciously imbibe is that it’s better not to even try if you aren’t going to be good at something. But let’s stop and think for a bit. Who set the definition that a successful website is one that has millions of hits? It surely wasn’t me. Shouldn’t I be the one that gets to define success on my own terms?
This post is what success means to me. For me to keep this website running for 6 years, and to reach a milestone of having published 50 articles, that’s something worth celebrating in my book. Sure, I may only have 10,000 hits, but I know from the comments, emails and feedback I’ve received that my articles actually had a positive impact on readers’ lives. And that’s all that matters to me: As I said above, The Thought Experiment is a medium for me to use my writing ability to do some good in the world. Goodness knows the world needs all the good it can get, with it in its current state.
To all of you who have read my articles and even subscribed, I thank you from the bottom of my heart. You readers are the reason why I do this, and it has been a pleasure writing pieces for you. 6 years, 50 articles, and many more to come!
I also think it’s timely to provide a list of all 50 articles I’ve published on this site, in case some of you are chancing upon this site for the first time (which is quite likely):
- The Secret to Happiness
- The Power of Ideals
- Finding Your Passion and Losing Your Fear
- Truth: Friend or Foe?
- Guest Article: What is Passion?
- The Power to Say No
- Hard Truth: Everyone is Selfish
- Time: The Most Precious Resource
- The Value of Superstitions
- How to Stick with your New Year Resolutions
- The Importance of Listening
- Why Gender Equality Matters
- Don’t Forget Your Inner Self
- Marriage: Where Two Become One
- Putting Things in Perspective
- The Art of Giving Freely
- Will Success make You Happy?
- Agreeing to Disagree
- Life after Breaking Up
- The Importance of Being Independent
- Be a Traveler, Not a Tourist
- Slow and Simple Wins the Race
- Dare to be Yourself
- Why You Should Love Reading
- Making Use of Milestones in your Life
- Stop Procrastinating. Start Living.
- You Are Your Own Biggest Problem
- The World Can’t Always Be Better. But You Can.
- Practice Makes Perfect. But What Exactly Are You Practising?
In the Workplace:
- What Makes a Good Boss?
- Guest Article: Why It’s Okay to Burn Bridges
- Owning Your Time
- Pace Yourself in Your Career
- The Importance of Work Life Balance
- What Every Manager Should Think About
- Money Myths Debunked
- Investing in Stocks 101
- Behavioral Finance: Timing the Markets
- The Growing Social Divide Between the Rich and Poor
- Do You Have Enough?
- Do Singaporeans Have Enough to Retire?
- Dominique Lee and Benjamin Lim: Playing the Blame Game
- Analyzing the NUS Fiasco
- Pokemon Go: Boon or Bane?
- Guest Article: Bridging the Singaporean Class Divide – A Personal Account
- Let Singaporean Motorcyclists Have Their Say