Boxing Day Clearing

Finally got started on some spring cleaning 1 day after Christmas aka Boxing Day ….

Decided to start off with the bookshelf in bro’s room as I think it has been about 2 years since I cleared that out (most of the time I focus on the storeroom & living room area where my stuff are scattered all over) …..Let the pictures do the talking 😀

The shelf in its originality (took the pic last night/this morning, heh) ……

After sleeping in (recurring theme through the extended holiday weekend :P) till 12-plus … lunch (home cooked curry fishhead :D) … some TV-ing and random surfing, I finally got started working on the shelf at around 4 ……

The shelf being cleared out …..

As I wiped the insides and clear it off dust (accumulated over time) …. decided to take some pics and have some effects from some of the camera apps from my iPhone …… Sidenote – As with the above picture + the following ones, went with WoW Camera app for consistency ….

** Old diaries from year 2005 .. 2006 .. 2008. Was contemplating throwing them away when I looked through it last night but decided to keep it as a record of my past work and for nostaglic reasons.

** Old Music CDs kept in CD folder …. my 1st ever VCD drama – With Love (bought from a NUS bazaar when JDrama was invading our shores in early 2000s) …. And a ziplock bag of all my running medals ……..

** Various financial magazines accumulated over the years. Briefly looked through them and there’s actually a lot of useful articles that is still relevant in 2011/2012 landscape – topics relating to productivity, financial planning, investments etc.

Consolidated all the above pictures into one via Multi-lens app (introduced by TL … very cool app!) ………

Had some fun exploring Leme Leme app as well. Always saw people doing this pane effect but I have never realised that I can do so as well by changing the lens under Camera Settings …. till today that is 😛

** I used to ‘invest’ in FSM magazine for investment related information and articles back in the days when I was with C ….. now at P, we get so many free magazines (as part of corporate sponsorship) but the irony is – too many things to read 😛

Realised there was also a stack of iFAST magazines in storeroom so took them out to consolidate …… and found out I actually have duplicate copies of the same issue (could be leftovers from seminar events etc.) …. So its time to prune!

**  Used the regular leme leme single lens effect …….

Of course not forgetting to take a picture of my 2nd Full Marathon (Stand Chart) finisher’s medal!

Had a coffee post clearing and now finishing up the blog in the comfort of my room!

Post Marathon Recovery & Re-Start

Completed my 2nd marathon over the weekend – Standard Chartered Singapore Marathon on 4th December Sunday ……

Briefly on the marathon 1st, was not able to acheive a sub-7 hour timing due to various reasons (insufficient training .. extreme heat & humidity .. poor distance markers) and ended up doing similar/slightly worst than last year – which is somewhat below my expectations …… Post run recovery was a drag this year. I had less foot blisters but the abrasion was pretty bad this time round (a sign of lack of fitness resulting in body ‘wear and tear’?) – that I wasn’t able to recover sufficiently to go back to office by Tuesday …… so that is one down!

Not going into details here on the run but having rested and calmed down over the past couple of days …. 1st and foremost, I am grateful that I still finished the entire race without being swept up by the lorry. Despite the cursing & swearing during the last quarter of the marathon, I think I might actually attempt another full next year – the goal of a sub 7 hour timing is something I would like to breakthrough …… For next year, I am looking at improving my 10k and 21km timings for the better half of the year – that’s one tangible year 2011 resolution down! 🙂

Post recovery was tougher this year as compared to last year …… as mentioned above, the body abrasions were more painful and I was still struggling to walk even on Tuesday morning, and so took another day off work. 2 days off work and PD Day (@ Singpost Centre in Paya Lebar) means that more than 1/2 the work week is gone and there is major catch-up to do 😦  …… Was back to office on Thursday, only to be welcomed with a malicious spyware titled ‘Vista Anti-Spyware 2012’ – which went into havoc the very moment I powered on my laptop on the office table …… Talk about an ‘ominous’ return back to work, sigh …… And proceeded to spend a good part of the afternoon figuring out a way to get rid of the spyware (which I managed to do so after referring to here) and more scannings before finally able to resolve the issue before Zzzz ……..

Hence doing my documents back-up before heading into office …. What a way to start and end the week! On a happier note, over the break I have started on a new drama series post Secret Garden – 我可能不會愛你 (Taiwanese Drama currently showing in Taiwan and on Starhub Ch825) ……

Very Bad Friday!

Very tough day today!

Had a tension headachne yesterday (after trip to MBS to collect race pack) and could not get much work done. The tension headachne clouded my judgement to such a extent that I ended up leaving my farecard and office pass in the office (Could not go back office to take while OTW to Bugis as I locked myself out. But thank god for the extra facecard in my handphone pouch) ……

And having to deal with a unreasonable client really sets a negative tone to whatever intentions to make Friday a good one. Have complained enough to E & C over whatsapp …… but whatever it is, it is very despicable to tell me the request is ‘very urgent’ where in actual fact the redemption is ‘not that urgent’ because market ain’t going to crash, it is more like you play the ‘urgent’ card just to get what you want, which is not very nice behaviour. In this situation, as it so happened that I have already have commitments over weekend and Monday – hence the earliest I could see client is Tuesday – and client is unhappy because adviser cannot see him/her NOW!

Thinking about it, if not for the fact that I have computer issues (windows hang & 1st system restore not working) + having left my pass in the office + having originally commited to a Saturday appointment (which most likely will not happen now, but that’s another story), maybe there is a good chance for me to catch the client today! But the logical side of the brain tells me not to – why is that so?

* I always work on an appointment basis with 1 day notice. I know some people think advisers should be at their immediate beck & call but IMO, 1 day notice is reasonable as its sufficient time for me to prepare the necessary before meeting. For the record, I do not necessarily demand client has to come to my office, I can travel if necessary so obviously 1 day notice is reasonable right ……

* As much as client is a friend, as this is business and involves somebody’s hard-earned money, it must be treated with strictest care and confidence. The same standards should apply whether is it friends who are clients and/or clients who are referred and/or clients who are originally cold prospects. Just because the client happens to be your friend/relative doesn’t mean that you should always comprimise your rules and guidelines as a professional. Because if you make too many exceptions, I end up short-changing other people who have also placed their trust and faith in my work as well.

* Usually experience tells me by giving in to someone’s stunt once, that someone will assume that it is OK to do it a second time, third time etc. As much as it is very tempting to give in at the 1st time, I know fully well that if you allow yourself to give in once, this person will keep pulling the same stunt over and over again and it becomes a vicious black-hole. This itself is a concern to me.

* In a client-adviser financial advisory relationship, it all fundamentally boils down to trust and confidence. When dealing with money matters, it is a lot more about managing soft facts and expectations rather than cold hard figures and projections. Client insisted that as a client, he/she has the last call to give instruction to adviser to do what he/she wants. While I do not necessarily dis-agree, however as it is people’s money and emotions that we are talking about, as advisers, we want the best for our clients – but wanting the best for them does not mean we have to be order takers (which in certain situations is not necessarily in client’s real best interest).

* As a add-on to the above, the same client quoted me an example where K did the right thing by redeeming the portfolio in June and he/she regrets not doing the same. Personally, I feel it is not a very fair statement because K’s circumstances and goals were very different from that of said person. Secondly, my main concern is that said person is reactive to market news (apparently he/she heard something over CNN and so needs to sell everything like now). End of the day, the newspaper/financial news is NOT your financial adviser! Many of you may do well to take note of this as well. In fact, I find that said person acts like a hyprocrite for he/she gives a different set of advice to the people around him/her.

* Also I have managed expectations many times by telling said person that it is always better to go for online transactions for speed and convience. But this person refuses to use the online portal because he/she doesn’t like it (and not because he/she is computer illiterate). If client had given in by doing a online redemption – I am very assured to be able to deliver the request confidently and quickly without all these backlash. In that sense, this nonsence is a result of personal choice and calling. (But of course, if I do have a client who is IT-illiterate, I have no issue in going back to see the client, just to clarify).

To think this idiot, together with the botched system restore + having to rush back to office to pick up my pass – stressed me up so much that I did not bring my wallet out & I ended up borrowing $$ from J in order to have lunch at 330pm!

In any case, I have decided not to pander to his/her demands (if said person was nicer to me, I would’ve relented a bit to consider seeing her on Monday irregardless of my post marathon recovery. See what happens when you piss people off,they don’t wanna help you). Of course, I did not leave him/her in the lurch lah – told him/her to go to provider direct as it is in fact faster than going through me (where the form still has to go through my head office before reaching provider). Of course, if circumstances allowed me a free Saturday – the appt would have been made already and I won’t be writing this blog entry (of all things, a negative blog to end my blogging hiatus). C says since I have politely excused myself, and in addition, I also typed a SMS apology stating that ‘I am sorry for not being able to meet his/her expectation and have made him/her unhappy’ …… just let the client cool down for now!

In short, after dealing with people like this, one thing that I can confirm is that it is not only it is important to uphold professional ethics and principles,  also Wendy suffers no fools!

Breaking The Blogger’s Block

Since my last entry dated Oct 12 (which is still sitting in the drafts folder but I promise will be up soon) …… I have been stuck with a actute blogger’s block – that happens when you have too many thoughts swirling in your mind, oh well ……

Ironically since my last entry was on reading, I have been suffering from a lack of reading aka reader’s block as well, oh well ……

Anyway since I was reading Daniel’s Food Diary while blog/internet surfing earlier in the afternoon, have decided that the best way to break this round of blogger’s block is by doing a food-related entry/review next ….. since there are lots of food pics in my blog ….. hehe …… stay tuned!

Weekly Photo Challenge: Sunset

Decided to submit my 1st ever weekly photo challenge entry b4 I rest for the new week ahead ……

Below is one of the ‘sunset’ theme photos that I had taken on my bali trip 2 years ago. As I have already posted my 2 favourite pictures of the trip in an earlier entry (co-incidentally also taken at sunset time), this time round, I will post one that was taken before our seafood dinner at Jinbaran Bay.

Hello October .. Random JPop Rant .. And Roly Poly

Back home after October began with heavy rain 1st thing in the morning which was perfect weather to snuggle in bed …but fat hope! Had a early morning work/business appointment with closed case to start off this quarter 🙂 …… pushed myself and made it for afternoon spin at Raffles gym …… and resting my legs in front of computer since I reached home (thought today’s class was less intense than last Saturday’s Hill ride but legs are feeling the effects now as last workout was evening run on Monday!) ……

Something different to kick off my 1st entry for October, instead of talking about deep thougts/reflecting on my life as per my past few entries,  decided would blog about something a lil’ different today ……

Came across this link while catching on some k-entertainment news on allkpop earlier – Akimoto Yasushi announces AKB48 sister group, “TPE48″!

My 2 cents worth:

Already 48 people (read wikipedia introduction here on the original concept group called AKB48 started back in Japan – liken them to the current in-thing, similar to Morning Musume in the early 00’s, also with their numerous sub-groups) is a handful …. and horror of horrors, more subgroups get branched out – starting with SKE48 and bla bla bla (refer to article for full list of sister groups) …… My rant here is that this factory style manufacturing is getting out of hand and beyond ridiculous. The girls not only look the same/generic/blah …. the songs are erm pretty bad too, as with most manufactured girl bands (or pop groups for that matter). Greed is to saturation point where the creator thinks he is so ingenious to bring this concept across to Taiwan and duplicate it wholesale. A country’s unique pop culture i.e. what CPop is to the chinese/taiwanese, KPop to the koreans and JPop to the japanese (Note: this does not mean that KPop songs rehased to Japanese versions qualify as pure JPop …. for discussion another time) ……

And yes, even a small country like Singapore is not spared from the AKB nonsence as well. In case you do not know ……  the AKB48 Official Shop, Theatre and Cafe was set up at SCAPE earlier this year. A case of totally milking it 😛

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On the other hand, as per my title, Roly Poly is the title song of T-ara (yes, another girl band, this times its KPop) ….. I like chilling to this song on a lazy Saturday afternoon as it is a nice combination of retro and yet strong grooving synthesiser beat. It is probably more for Summer (given October is the start of autumn/fall) as T-ara had their comeback with this in early July (and was a great success!) ….. Well, the T-ara girls are not the best singers out there, but the concept is good and they have lots of charm. Most importantly, this is a very hummable and radio friendly song …..

To end off ……  ‘loly poly loly loly poly’ all the way to the end of weekend, heh!

P/S: They are pretty cute in schoolgirl uniforms eh ….

Friday Thoughts Part 2: Habits & Change

Am back for my 2nd entry for the day 🙂

Am finally getting down to Part 2 of my Friday Thoughts series from where I last left off – which is almost 1 month ago. Coming off a challenging day at work, time for a blog entry to calm myself down and reflect properly (while unwinding to some dramas on TV) ……

Have been in a sort of epiphany lately ….. And it seems that bad/lousy/challenging Fridays come consecutively. Last Friday, was on the very verge of tears in the office due to some accumulated frustration …. And I nearly teared just now in the office as well due to the ‘lousy’ attitude of a friend/client (the disappointment comes from the fact that said friend was dismissive my well meaning intentions with a ‘I think I know better’ / 自以为是 attitude) ……

Is it the pressure that comes from the pressing need for performance (which goes hand in hand with productivity) ….. while the need to improve productivity comes from the necessity of having to CHANGE HABITS (or rather undo BAD habits and develop GOOD habits) …… And this is where the epiphany comes from – the sudden realization that some things may not have been done right, and changes are necessary if I really want to see progress ……

Realization and the pressing need to do something aside, the main challenge comes from having to overcome and overhaul belief system and the easy way out of falling back into the usual comfort zone (sometimes its just easier/tempting doing the things you usually do then trying to make a real change – something which is challenging to keep up) ……

Having attended the 13th APLIC at Resorts World Sentosa back in July, one key point that struck me deeply is that it is important to ‘force’ oneself to do the things that one may not like (but necessary to do) – until it becomes much easier to do and eventually a good habit that sticks with one!

For me, this ranges from waking up early, getting down to my do morning run and once a week LSD run, recording my daily activities and tracking of production, reading regularly, doing my self-awareness journal daily ……. Sounds easily for some, but it is challenging for me to keep to it on a consistent basis – until it becomes a ingrained habit. The problem with me is that I do it in spades, and not consistently. I need these activities to be consistent and manage my time better in order to see results. After swimming/floating around for the 2nd decade of my life, 已经没有多少个十年了! No more time to waste!

To help myself conquer the bad habit of procrastination, from Monday on, as tweeted, I have started up a self-awareness journal jotting down my daily activities (this is in addition to my Outlook Calendar & Sales Builder booklet & Running/Workout Log & my wallet-sized diary tracking daily expenses) …… Lots of things to write and track huh …… But as recommended b business coaches and a particular financial guru – Normal Levine, the journalling process is an important one as it makes one self-aware …… So one up on building up my self-awareness ……

I have been reading my copy of “The Secret” for the past 2 weeks as part of my daily MRT reading (on the way to work/appointment) ….. Below are a couple of phrases that keep me going despite all the obstacles/challenges ……

There’s another one on waking up each day with gratitude and gratefulness that is very powerful as well – that itself serves as a powerful force to attract good things in your life! Do try waking up with that attitude 🙂

I guess that’s all for now …….

Note: Wrote this on Friday …….and only finished it on the following Thursday morning 😛