Ending 2016 ……

Its only now – with 1 more day to go before 2016 comes to an official close that I finally have the time to wipe some dust off this blog as I’m working from home today.

December has been a busy and relatively productive month. I hesitated to say ‘productive’ or ‘very productive’ as I felt I could have managed my focus and energy levels much better …… before I can confidently say I’ve been productive. More important is the self-awareness to realize that …… and this will be something I have to keep working on in year 2017.

Sometimes plans, how well laid-out it can be, will not always go swimmingly / within our expectation.

One thing I have set out to do is to do more yoga over the festive season (christmas eve right till the new year) – as versus to just 1 class per week. My original plan today was to take the day off, go for lunchtime Stretch @ Yoga Lab …… followed by a relaxing lunch and some shopping in town. However a last minute quotation request from client came in last night. And so in the end, I sacrificed my home practice last night and sleep (eyes were already closing at 11+) to send out the quotation requests so that I could get some indicative responses by noon (as some insurers may be on half-day).

In the end, no indicative quote was forthcoming (as this is a specialized risk). Thankfully, I managed to seek client’s understanding that the time frame is too rushed, and we can only see some outcome in the new year.

And so I’ll do home practice today instead and go for a Stretch Class tomorrow morning. Interestingly, my original intention/workout plan for this week is to do a Stretch Class either on Friday or Saturday after attending a Hot Yoga 101 Class earlier on Tuesday evening. Flip-flopped a bit last night by putting myself on the wait-list for Yoga 101 at 1745 Hrs later, only to eventually cancel it (after getting a mat) and reverting back to my original plan of doing Stretch Class.

Which brings me to another point – setting and managing expectations.

When dealing with clients, clients will always want their needs to be attended first and on asap basis (even though it may neither be urgent nor important). Looking back now, although I wasn’t able to get an indicative quote today (which was the ideal scenario I had in my mind) – most important thing is that I got my client’s understanding that it may be difficult to firm things right now since its festive season. And he/she was pretty cool with it. So after some rough hiccups in the business relationship along the way, it is a sign of progress that I’m able to handle fickle natures a lot better now – by managing expectations accordingly.

And that brings me to the next point(s) – patience and intention.

Ideally, if the quote could come in today, I will be able to close off my work and have the afternoon off. Or from another perspective, simply tell the client that its not possible and let’s wait till the new year – and have the entire day off to do what I want to do. It was good that I kept going at it – despite the less than positive outcome for now …… and eventually we should be able to come to a more reasonable timeline to firm up something soon once everyone is back in normal working mode (and also when client manages to firm their equipment leasing details on their end too).

When this deal (and the deals/cases that I have been working on pre and post Christmas) eventually comes through – the rewards/fruits of labour will be that much sweeter and more precious. And so a little waiting here for now after having put in my best efforts!

And having the above clarity meant that I was able to go back to my original intention of closing year 2016 with a yoga class …… after starting my Christmas holidays with Hatha Yoga Class on Christmas Eve (where I completely blocked out work) and to end 2016 with another yoga class (with no distractions). As I have learnt in mediation and from yoga – setting your intention is important, as that will serve as our original purpose to why we set out to do that particular activity.

What was meant to be a random musings entry turned out to be a longer reflection piece (unplanned). It definitely feels good to be able to crystallize my thoughts and blog/write once again.

Food Mission 2016: Kohaku Tempura

Getting more up to speed with my foodie adventures before year 2016 comes to an end in a little more than a months time ……

Authentically tasty Tendon – in short for Tempura Donburi (exactly, or close to what I had eaten before in Japan) is not so easily to come by in Singapore. Until the Keisuke Group opened up Tendon Ginza Itsuki at a Tanjong Pagar shophouse corner. Never had the opportunity to eat at Tendon Ginza Itsuki proper due to its snaking quenes (both at lunchtime and at dinnertime).

Until Kohaku Tempura came along (as part of Suntec City’s Eat At Seven Dining Belt that houses various Japanese dining concepts under one roof) …… only then I finally get to have a proper Japanese style Tendon!

Kohaku is another tendon eatery that has been getting rave reviews online. Walked passed the place once when I happened to be in Suntec and saw the snaking quenes for dinner service (there’s about 15 people in the quene and that will probably take a good 1/2 hour to 45 min to clear). And so decided that if I were ever to try it, I have to do it slightly off-peak i.e. before the main dinner crowd streams in from 630pm onwards. Managed to schedule it a evening to do so – that was around end September when I was back again in Suntec to collect my Note7 replacement.

Eat At Seven is a new Japanese dining belt (in the revamped Suntec City Mall) that houses 7 different Japanese dining establishments under one roof. Kohaku is located right after the tonkatsu restaurant (which I have also read good reviews on), with a huge cloth banner right beside the entrance.

Didn’t manage to take pictures of the interior as my phone (was still using my old Note 4) was low on battery. Fortunately, there was a power point beside my seat 🙂 …… thus still able to take pictures of the tendon that I have been anticipating ……

Ordered their signature Kohaku Tendon ($15) that comes with fried vegetables, prawn, seafood (crab stick, squid) and chicken on top of hokkaido rice drizzed in a special sauce. As per my picture above, the portion looked really big until I had to segregate out some of the ingredients in order to eat and enjoy my meal properly (see below picture).

Despite all the items being FRIED (major diet killer) …… I must say it is worth killing your diet for 😛

The individual items were well fried, without being overly oily/greasy. From the pictures, it does not look as crispy …… but in my opinion, this is subjective. As with all fried food,  what is more important (for myself at least) is that I can still get to taste the freshness of the ingredients (particularly the tempura prawn, chicken breast, baby corn and pumpkin) …… and at the end of meal, feeling satisfied and not hot/dry at the throat. And the rice was fluffy and easy to the taste, and went well with the ingredients and sauce.

For $15 (before GST) – considering the huge amount of ingredients (the tempura I had at Teppei for lunch didn’t even have this much stuff, Kohaku is definitely a value eat and worth the queue!

Details:

Tempura Kohaku 天丼琥珀

3 Temasek Boulevard
#03-311 Eat At Seven, Suntec City
Singapore 038983

Tel: +65 6333 4386
Opening hours: 1100 Hrs to 2200 Hrs

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kohaku.tempura/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Chaos

1st Photo Challenge in a long long while.

Finally managed to find some photos that fit into this week’s theme – Chaos.

As documented on this blog, around this time last year (1st half of November 2015), I had my 11 day vacation to Japan. Had intended to do a summary/round-up of day trip to Karuizawa (from Tokyo) but it came to nil as I’m blogging a lot lesser these days.  And so, this will serve in part as part walk down memory lane / reminiscence of my trip last year 🙂

This was on the early part of our walk/hike around the Kyu-Karuizawa Area.

p1050683

p1050685

p1050686

Withered trees and a-almost deserted road ……

p1050688

p1050695

Deserted houses covered up by overgrown trees/autumn leaves ……

p1050762

Another ‘deserted’ house we came across later along the hike to the pond.

I would term this as peace amongst chaos. While the walking/hiking trail looked messy due to the overgrown trees …… however it felt very peaceful walking through while enjoying the crisp clean air (as Karuizawa is a mountain resort in Nagano Prefecture).

The original challenge entry here

Difficult Clients

Having some problem dealing with a difficult client …… and this problem resurfaced again mid-week, after a good 5 months of complete silence (on the client’s part).

Not picking up calls, not confirming/keeping to appointments is another. What is even WORSE than the already mentioned 2 points is giving excuses along the lines of ‘sorry I didn’t reply due to many changes in my job’ …… and even WORSE feigning ignorance on what you DID NOT DO!

How not to get infuriated with such problematic clients!!

Anyway am doing some ‘prepping’ online to get some tips on how to deal with this errant persone before I return the call (as per said person’s request, it can only be weekend …. what a prima donna!).

Good luck to me!!

This one is particularly good

http://www.sportsfinancial.org/how-to-deal-with-difficult-clients-3-keys-to-success-for-financial-advisers/

Key points summarised from the above article

1. Tell the truth.Tell the client, in a business-like and professional way, with a little humor blended in, that they are a pain in your sits-bones (to be kind). You may think this is offensive, but it’s not. The reason it’s not is because difficult people know they are difficult. It will come as no surprise to your client that you find them difficult; I guarantee that you’re not the only one they’re difficult with. They’re probably difficult at home with their family members too, and with co-workers. The client may be testing you to see how far you’ll let them go. Don’t let them get away with difficult behavior. Call them on it, from the start, by telling the truth.

2. Tell them you want to do a good job for them, but you’ll not be pushed around.Insist that they be respectful or let them know they can go elsewhere. After all, you don’t need difficulty in your life, you’ve already got enough challenges as a financial adviser, you don’t need to add pain-in-the-sits-bones clients to the list.

3. Be commanding & well documented.Talk louder than you have to with difficult clients. Be clear cut and to the point in all your communications with them. Put everything you say to them in writing and send them a note, letter or email that outlines the nature of every discussion you have with them, including steps that each party will take. Document, document, document. Difficult clients try to make trouble, but don’t get very far when you’ve got everything well documented. (Plus, compliance will love you for it, because difficult clients are just lawsuits waiting to happen.)

Remember, you don’t need difficult clients. You’re better off without them. If they continue to be difficult, fire them.

One last note, perhaps some people need to learn how to be a human being first before expecting their advisers to give the ‘best advice’ according to their inflated egos and standards.

October Milestone

After a period of procrastination, exercise inactivity (late July till now) …… I finally got moving and bought a trial pass at Yoga Inc to start yoga proper *grin*

And 1st October, being a Saturday and also the 1st day of a new month (and new quarter i.e. Q4) was the perfect day to make a new head start/beginning in my fitness/health & wellness journey, as well as to develop a new interest/hobby. And most importantly, another goal/resolution finally ticked off my list 🙂

And what better than a Warm Stretch class – which is a basic level stretch class, but with a slight twist as the room is slightly heated to a temperature of 35 degrees. As per class description, it was the perfect class for me to start off with and work out those stiff muscles again (after a good 2 months of inactivity/zero exercise). Although I ended up resting and recovering from the muscle achnes (particularly at the right shin) for a few days after class.

Will be looking forward to my next planned class (Basics) soon, with the eventual goal of making it a twice a week workout (long term) with some self-practice on my own at home. Am excited to see a more flexible me …… and also how far my yoga journey will go now that I have finally taken the 1st step to start.

A Letter From March 20th, 2016

This was part of the 30DLBL program that I was doing in the earlier part of the year – where one of the tasks involved writing a letter to my future self 6 months down the road. This came into my mailbox 2 days ago on 20th September – Tuesday evening to be precise while I was having my post-work dinner.

As this exercise reflects the ideal vision that I have for myself in the future, thus it is also a good opportunity for me to look back how I have progressed this past 6 months and reflect back 🙂

While not everything has gone exact to plan – with the closure of California Fitness resulting in my exercise/fitness routine going into shambles (for now), and while my time management (on daily activities) can still be improved further.

And I should be writing another letter to myself soon – to be read 6 months down the road.


Dear Wendy,

It has been a good 6 months since you have started on 30DLBL. How are you getting on?

By now, you should be living more fulfillingly, purposefully, meaningfully, and productively. You no longer procrastinate on making a client call / follow up, neither do you idle your mornings away.

You wake up nice and early everyday, raring to go. You start your work days nice and early, and by 5pm, most of the work you have set out to do for the day is completed, leaving you with a clean slate in the evenings to do your favourite things i.e. enjoy a nice dinner, read my favourite books, catch up on project work, watch your favourite dramas/variety shows.

You are also a fitter Wendy, as you can now run 1 hour non-stop comfortably. You have also become stronger and more flexible. And hopefully, slimmer and more toned.

With your routine set in the right direction through your continuous efforts and determination, and with a little bit of faith and confidence, you should be able to see the ‘fruits’ of your labour – being happier at work and actually enjoying your work again. And as a consequence, doing better, earning more, being able to save and invest more, contribute more to the household.

Also, making better relationships, and renewing existing friendships.

Last but not least, continuously growing to be a better person.

Love,
Wendy

 

10 Days Into September ….

Pretty busy month in August with work keeping me occupied enough …… while my personal time management leaves much to be desired.

Essentially, I have been gradually straying from continually building/re-building good habits and maintaining a steady morning/work/exercise routine. To the extent that I have yet to get the yoga membership done up to start proper after talking about it from end July till now *gasp*

So I guess its a testament to how FAST time really files as we are 10 days into September! Pretty eventful start to September as of all things, laptop went dead on me over the weekend …… which means another breakdown for the Lenovo for the 2nd time in less than 2 years since it was bought, sigh. And so this means having to drop almost everything and get the laptop fixed ASAP – as I use it for work/business. Very bad timing as I had intended to get some strategic/planning work and paperwork (business placement) done.

Despite, all the bad, after going down to the Lenovo Service Centre @ Paya Lebar on Monday afternoon …… and explaining my situation to the staff there (not before some argument about the warranty registration which was due to some mix up in records on Lenovo’s end), I managed to get the repairs expedited. They replaced the hard disk (as the original hard disk failed) ASAP and I managed to collect it by Tuesday afternoon. At the same time, I was also able to pop by client’s office in the East to get a renewal cheque in. So it did not turn out to be so bad after all *grateful*

Got it back, struggled with paperwork and came to a realisation that P**S’s business placement processes need to be greatly improved as everything is too manual and requirements too rigid. If not, its time to walk! Spoke a bit with C on Friday evening in the office …… and came to a realization about a problematic client that I have been dealing with. (Note to self: Will tackle this issue after much procrastinating/sitting on it asap).

Finally have the long weekend to properly catch up on some strategic/planning work, and properly review/track my work/business …… as well as to finish up the 1st round of online assessment (mandatory T&C requirement). And also to rest/relax my mind, do some enjoyable stuff before another work week beckons!