You wanted an A but you got a B

“Let’s be honest. You got an A- but you’re still mad (…) You will almost certainly face more and deeper adversity.”

Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook shared at a commencement speech at University of California, Berkeley.

She lost her husband a year and 16 days ago, and through the junks and possibly the lowest point in her life, she learnt that when life sucks you under, you can kick against the bottom, break the surface, and breathe again.

I lost my dad on 3rd January 2016. I woke up in the middle of the night during my staycation to a phone call. It was the only night in these many years I decided to switch the ringer to full volume and it rang, as though I was expecting it.

And I’ve since learnt a lot about myself, my personality, how I face challenges, how I’ve change the way I approach challenges so that I will be stronger for more that will come my way.

Sheryl Sandberg put it in a very simple but powerful sentence:

“The easy days ahead of you will be easy. It is the hard days—the times that challenge you to your very core—that will determine who you are. You will be defined not just by what you achieve, but by how you survive.”

Every time sadness comes rushing in and trips me at the most unexpected moment during the day/night, I tell myself “If I get through this, I will only be stronger!”. I am only able to tell myself this because I accepted that I am not an emotionally strong person. Only when you accept your flaws (P.S. I’m anal about how people use the word “emotional” loosely with a negative connotation.) that you will be able to put some actions into improving and changing.

The reason why I am sharing this story for the first time online is because I want to encourage people to not be afraid of failures and losses. There will certainly be many more of such situations to come in life, always remember that you will survive and you will survive even bigger challenges ahead! If you can recognise that you are falling into the downward spiral of despair, you can catch yourself.

Gratitude and appreciation is key to resilience. Be grateful for how things can be worse but it isn’t. Appreciate the people around you but more importantly, appreciate yourself.

Read and watch more of what Sheryl shared, especially on the 3 Ps – http://www.techinsider.io/sheryl-sandberg-berkeley-commencement-speech-2016-5

 

Starting right

I have a reputation for being an early bird, morning person, etc. And it puzzles my friends how I can wake up early, naturally. Of course, I had my periods of laziness and snoozing for gazillion times! But its actually really easy to kick start your day early and feel super productive.

Here’s a Business Insider I stumbled upon:

http://www.businessinsider.sg/how-to-get-up-early-2015-1/

My take on the tips? Definitely give it a try! Well…reading a book and not drinking alcohol before bed time is pretty much a no-brainer, yet something really hard to achieve. Because it’s really hard to put your phone away in the first place? haha…yeah I know…

But Getting sun as soon as possible is something I know works for me, indefinitely. It really helps reduce that dreadful lethargic feeling with the right amount of sunlight and “heat”. Drinking water chokes me in the morning but it helps, cause I end up trying to “wake up” so I don’t actually choke…

Yoga in the morning sounds too daunting, consider stretching your calf muscles by tip-toeing in bed, do some ankle rotations and stretch your arm all the way back above your head. Loosening up all that stiffness and you will be ready to spring out of bed!

Kickstart your day at work

Last tip, clear your morning. “The Most Important 20 Minutes of the Day” is usually in the morning right? Or so says famous founders, entrepreneurs, lala… I don’t disagree with that, but I do have a tip of my own.

Instead of planning, prioritising and organising your day in the morning, try this. My Daily Routine:

1. At the end of each day, look at your task list and check them off one by one. (Satisfaction!)

2. Reassess, and immediately create a new list for the next day.

I personally think that this helps you leave work feeling good that you’ve accomplished a quantifiable amount and knowing what to expect for the next day allows you to relax and rewind for the night.

3. The next morning, look at your list, and START! Keep the adrenaline pumping. If you have ad hoc activities, add them in as the day goes by but make sure its prioritised accordingly.

This is especially useful for me as it reduces the inertia to kickstart the day at work. You can give it a try and share your tips with me too! What works for me may not work for you.

Third Last Day of 2014

One of my Christmas cards this year wrote:

” 2014 has certainly been an exciting year for you 🙂 Wishing you a really Happy 2015! THIS IS THE YEAR FOR YOU 🙂 You know it…”

2014 has indeed been one of the most exciting year for me. I met lovely people along the way, I lost some along the way. It was a roller coaster year I will never forget! Every experience is a valuable lesson for me in 2014, which will pay off in 2015.

I’m thankful for the best friends who stayed by my side and always supportive. (Yes, don’t doubt yourself, you’re all the bestest ever!)

I’m thankful how I learnt to treasure my family more.

I’m thankful for how I’ve been through so much and became who I’m today.

I’m thankful for those who helped me along the way in every smallest action possible, because it takes a lot (inside) for someone to willingly offer a helping hand.

2015 will be a blasting year! I’m gonna be soaring and I know it! 😉

Stay healthy and happy everyone. And always be thankful of the little things in life.

Stop being jealous

It’s perfectly normal to be jealous of the success of others, especially those whom you think are not “that” much smarter or better than you are (or so you think).

Feeling envious of Mark Zuckerberg or any other billionaire startup founder and spurred on by them, is also a perfectly normal situation.

I’ve been there, the whole realm of jealousy. But we all know that is a tiring affair. And now, I don’t get jealous anymore (most of the time). I start to learn how to feel happy for others. The key to that is knowing what makes you happy. If success makes you happy, then define your success. It doesn’t necessary mean starting a billionaire dollar company, because I personally think that takes more than what you think to achieve, a lot of hardship, cold times, and a bucket full of tears/sweat.

Humans are born to want more. If we aren’t, then there isn’t globalisation, technology, improvements in the world, and you wouldn’t be reading this.

I recently learnt that, knowing what makes you happy is the key to happiness. And when you are happy with what you can or want to achieve, you will be happy for other’s success, instead of feeling jealous. Because that success is theirs to own, not what you want for yourself.

I am happy learning new things, working hard to gain a new skill, throwing ideas off different people, and having my daily coffee 🙂 I may not be successful now, but I am working towards happier days that sums up my life at the end of the journey. Baby steps yo!

Trying to come up with an out of the world marketing idea for the travel platform I am working on now, so if you have any crazy ideas, let me know! ANY, crazy ideas. No restrictions or boundaries.

Lucky Five

Friday is usually the best day of the week cause WEEKEND is knocking! Some days you will feel like “Gosh, finally the tough week is over”, other days you will feel like “eh…that was fast, what did I do last week?”.

I’ve decided to post a Lucky Five, just photos I took over the week 🙂

Supper with silly peopleSweet Treats from JapanBirthday BoyMa Maison Strawberry Tart   Magic DoorMangosteen

Have a good weekend everyone!