For the third year running, I met Peter Draw in Japan, the inspiring caricature artist who draws for charity. He holds three Guiness World Records- the biggest caricature in shortest amount of time, 24 hours non-stop drawing, and the largest art lesson in the world (across 12 countries to more than 1000 children at the same time). All the money gathered in the activities he participated in was donated to charity, or used in a charitable way in the form of building schools for poor people.

“The sweetest gift comes in the form of nothing. Nothing more than what you already have,” he says.

Indeed, every simple action taken, every word spoken, can make someone else happier. You don’t need too much in order to achieve happiness- not in oneself, but to others. And I believe Peter’s ability to deliver the sweetest gift comes not from his talent in drawing, but in his heart of gold. What’s the point of having bestowed with enormous amounts of talent if they are applied for the sake of oneself? You need to go beyond the point of merely satisfying yourself, into the idea of using what you have to influence and inspire others. Having tremendous talent might mean much to yourself and to your  immediate friends and relatives at first, but you will be forgotten as time passes by. On the other hand, if you are able to channel this talent in such a way that it affects others in a positive way, they will remember it for life.

As I begin sketching the blueprint of my own future, I sometimes peek through the corner of my eyes at Peter’s drawings, and get constantly reminded of what he tells me. Do something that you like, but don’t stop there. Go beyond yourself and reach out to others. After all, real happiness comes in the form of nothing. Nothing more than what you already have.