top of page
  • Writer's pictureLifeDesigner with Jingyu Chen

Bella Is Back In 2023

Living In The Present and Creating Experiential Moments



I am so thrilled to have Bella back on Life Designer for the finale episode in 2023! Bella and I made this cute little pact to make an annual podcast—completely unscripted like girl chit-chat, yet very sophisticated conversations. It's an intimate gaze into our personal growth and introspection every year. This marks our third episode in the third year!


We opened our conversation with Bella’s ' Two years in a row trip' to Mexico. Tennis was the driving force that led her there this time. People often dismiss an idea at its inception, whether it's dabbling into an unfamiliar field or acquiring new skills, simply because it may seem less accessible or be associated with high costs. Bella started tennis by hitting the ball onto the wall alone next to her apartment. As she continued, tennis also became a bridge connecting her with the neighborhood, and her neighbor voluntarily offered to teach her the sport. Bella said tennis itself is fun, but it's the human connection piece that rekindles her curiosity about different facets of humanity. She developed a much stronger sense of belonging amid the hustle and bustle of New York.




About being present : The year 2023 marks a full-circle moment for both of us. We no longer perpetuate the idea of creating a new reality, instead, we shift our mindset to embrace each current moment. Travel, for us, is neither an escape nor a remedy that distances us from our mundane daily lives. We intend to make each day count, infused with the same level of energy, curiosity, and passion that we experience when we are on the road.


About Existential Crisis: Both of us have faced our fair share of struggles and moments of self-loss, where our inner voice and outward expectations failed to align. It's a painful yet beautiful dance that eventually guides us to live in alignment with our values. By choosing intentional living, we are better equipped to counterbalance the giant distractions from the outside world, ultimately prevailing over existential threats. We further reassess our relationship with the social environment, its structures, and its constituents. While acknowledging their importance, we fiercely protect the fundamental drivers that shape us.

Bella said 'I embrace and celebrate the way people live their lives but also claim my rights and freedom to design life the way I wish.' I have also reached a point where I've built a solid yet distant, safe boundary with society. I appreciate the otherness of individuals but also strive to carve out my authentic, unique, and unapologetic life.


About the Paradox of Time: Time is limited, but as Bella said, when we know how to use our time, it can be on our side, working with us. If we decide to do something, just do it consistently every day and time will provide an answer one day. Bella said 'Time can do wonders'. I also always said time is my biggest asset, and I am determined to turn its limited nature into a gateway towards an unlimited future.


About creating experiential moments: This mindset is derived from our surrender to the fact that life can't be controlled, and it's also influenced by our new perception of time. This year, we transitioned from creating a new reality to creating moments. Bella shared her magic moments list, a true testament to her ethos of living in the moment. As she said, the past is gone, and the future is yet to come. Only the current moment is what we have. I also want to apply this mindset to my life in an overarching sense, and I believe it will infuse more possibilities and hope into our lives.


About Ego and Pretentiousness: It's a delicate dance between ego and pretentiousness. Bella uncovers what leads us to be consumed by ego and how it keeps us from being humble, curious and empathetic. Up to this point, I've become more grounded but remain aware that occasionally, I may still carry that unconscious ego, not quite reaching the best kind of humbleness. However, as Bella pointed out, the consciousness of our limits and flaws sustains us as lifelong learners and propels us to consistently strive to be better persons.

Yet about pretentiousness, Bella said we can be confident in knowing what we know without selling ourselves for short.  Ethan Hawk, one of my favourite actors, said ( which I quote  lol): It’s ok that you are pretentious if you do it with a bit of humor. If you have a sense of humor about yourself, it means you are aspiring to something. You have to set up a goal for yourself. Personally, I believe that the element of pretentiousness defines an artist's artistry and sustains their creativity and authenticity. I've made a promise to myself to forever protect the sensibility, pretentiousness, and authenticity of an artist like Bella.


About Writing & Singing: Bella is also a writer. Authenticity is rooted in her writing ethos. Writing serves as her self-portrait of honesty and reputation. However, reaching that radical honesty requires significant mental efforts in the deconstruction and construction of her thoughts and emotions. It is also an intense and sometimes brutal self-scrutiny into the precision and clarity of words. A good writer draws inspiration from predecessors through dense and in-depth reading and researching, as well as from their own life experiences and understanding. Bella said she will be writing for her the rest of life, eager to see where life will take her. Writing, for her, is the ultimate container—an art form and a perpetual documentation of her living proof and evidence.


Entering 2023, I find myself deeply drawn to writing, particularly in hotel reviews—a perfect blend of my interests in architecture, interior design,and travel. While technical precision achieves a certain level of clarity and accuracy, the evocation of my personal sentiment and reminiscence can only come from a genuine place. I aim for sophistication and an elevated lexicon built on a new design language system, as well as the authenticity of my storytelling. Each piece I write is grounded in vigorous research, delving into references of architecture, art, culture, and history. Conducting research pays the most basic respect to the discipline I feel connected to and to professionals in the industry. However, attaining alignment between my inward emotions and the outward world has set me on a path toward a meaningful form of writing. Bella and I are committed to this writing path (although I just started lol) because we both truly want to deeply take in, understand and see the world intellectually and aesthetically. 


I told Bella that it took a few very profound moments of grief for me to reconcile with the fact that I am not inherently talented in any sense, but she said I am talented. My energy and curiosity towards the world are so unique and precious. I have come to define my role as a keen observer and listener of the world, aiding beautiful souls like Bella to shine and illuminate more people.


Our annual chat has woven into the warmness of Bella singing 'Moon River'. My tears burst out. We both truly feel life remains so hopeful  because we believe there is true love around the corner and we can design the life we want.

  

Thank you all for listening to my podcast 'Life Designer' in 2023. See you all in 2024!


Conntect to Bella :

Website: bellajiang

小红书: 一只纽约文艺狗

Our Episode in 2021

Our Episode in 2022


Shownotes

I am so thrilled to have Bella back on Life Designer for the finale episode in 2023! Bella and I made this cute little pact to make an annual podcast—completely unscripted like girl chit-chat, yet very sophisticated conversations. It's an intimate gaze into our personal growth and introspection every year. This marks our third episode in the third year!


We opened our conversation with Bella’s ' two years in a row trip' to Mexico. Tennis was the driving force that led her there this time. People often dismiss an idea at its inception, whether it's dabbling into an unfamiliar field or acquiring new skills, simply because it may seem less accessible or be associated with high costs. Bella started tennis by hitting the ball onto her apartment wall alone. As she continued, tennis also became a bridge connecting her with the neighborhood, and her neighbor voluntarily offered to teach her the sport. Bella said tennis itself is fun, but it's the human connection piece that rekindles her curiosity about different facets of humanity. She developed a much stronger sense of belonging amid the hustle and bustle of New York.


About being present : The year 2023 marks a full-circle moment for both of us. We no longer perpetuate the idea of creating a new reality, instead, we shift our mindset to embrace each current moment. Travel, for us, is neither an escape nor a remedy that distances us from our mundane daily lives. We intend to make each day count, infused with the same level of energy, curiosity, and passion that we experience when we are on the road.


About Existential Crisis: Both of us have faced our fair share of struggles and moments of self-loss, where our inner voice and outward expectations failed to align. It's a painful yet beautiful dance that eventually guides us to live in alignment with our values. By choosing intentional living, we are better equipped to counterbalance the giant distractions from the outside world, ultimately prevailing over existential threats. We further reassess our relationship with the social environment, its structures, and its constituents. While acknowledging their importance, we fiercely protect the fundamental drivers that shape us.

Bella said 'I embrace and celebrate the way people live their lives but also claim my rights and freedom to design life the way I wish.' I have also reached a point where I've built a solid yet distant, safe boundary with society. I appreciate the otherness of individuals but also strive to carve out my authentic, unique, and unapologetic life.


About the Paradox of Time: Time is limited, but as Bella said, when we know how to use our time, it can be on our side, working with us. If we decide to do something, just do it consistently every day and time will provide an answer one day. Bella said 'Time can do wonders'. I also always said time is my biggest asset, and I am determined to turn its limited nature into a gateway towards an unlimited future.


About creating experiential moments: This mindset is derived from our surrender to the fact that life can't be controlled, and it's also influenced by our new perception of time. This year, we transitioned from creating a new reality to creating moments. Bella shared her magic moments list, a true testament to her ethos of living in the moment. As she said, the past is gone, and the future is yet to come. Only the current moment is what we have. I also want to apply this mindset to my life in an overarching sense, and I believe it will infuse more possibilities and hope into our lives.


About Ego and Pretentiousness: It's a delicate dance between ego and pretentiousness. Bella uncovers what leads us to be consumed by ego and how it hinders us from being humble, curious and empathetic. Up to this point, I've become more grounded but remain aware that occasionally, I may still carry that unconscious ego, not quite reaching the best kind of humbleness. However, as Bella pointed out, the consciousness of our limits and flaws sustains us as lifelong learners and propels us to consistently strive to be better persons.

Yet about pretentiousness, Bella said we can be confident in knowing what we know without selling ourselves for short.  Ethan Hawk, one of my favourite actors, said ( which I quote  lol): It’s ok that you are pretentious if you do it with a bit of humor. If you have a sense of humor about yourself, it means you are aspiring to something. You have to set up a goal for yourself. Personally, I believe that the element of pretentiousness defines an artist's artistry and sustains their creativity and authenticity. I've made a promise to myself to forever protect the sensibility, pretentiousness, and authenticity of an artist like Bella.


About Writing & Singing: Bella is also a writer. Authenticity is rooted in her writing ethos. Writing serves as her self-portrait of honesty and reputation. However, reaching that radical honesty requires significant mental efforts in the deconstruction and construction of her thoughts and emotions. It is also an intense and sometimes brutal self-scrutiny into the precision and clarity of words. A good writer draws inspiration from predecessors through dense and in-depth reading and researching, as well as from their own life experiences and understanding. Bella said she will be writing for her the rest of life, eager to see where life will take her. Writing, for her, is the ultimate container—an art form and a perpetual documentation of her living proof and evidence.

Entering 2023, I find myself deeply drawn to writing, particularly in hotel reviews—a perfect blend of my interests in architecture, interior design,and travel. While technical precision achieves a certain level of clarity and accuracy, the evocation of my personal sentiment and reminiscence can only come from a genuine place. I aim for sophistication and an elevated lexicon built on a new design language system, as well as the authenticity of my storytelling. Each piece I write is grounded in vigorous research, delving into references of architecture, art, culture, and history. Conducting research pays the most basic respect to the discipline I feel connected to and to professionals in the industry. However, attaining alignment between my inward emotions and the outward world has set me on a path toward a meaningful form of writing. Bella and I are committed to this writing path (although I just started lol)  because we both truly want to deeply take in, understand and see the world intellectually and aesthetically. 


I told Bella that it took a few very profound moments of grief for me to reconcile with the fact that I am not inherently talented in any sense, but she said I am talented. My energy and curiosity towards the world are so unique and precious. I have come to define my role as a keen observer and listener of the world, aiding beautiful souls like Bella to shine and illuminate more people.


Our annual chat has woven into the warmness of Bella singing 'Moon River'. My tears burst out. We both truly feel life remains so hopeful  because we believe there is true love around the corner and we can design the life we want.

  

Thank you all for listening to my podcast 'Life Designer' in 2023. See you all in 2024!














Comments


bottom of page