Saturday, December 24, 2016

2016 Year End Review

 It’s end of the year, again. Yes, 2016 finally comes to an end. How is this year doing to you? To me, it is a fantastic year with full of challenges.

Let’s review what had happened to me this year and what I’ve done:

January – My mum went under a minor eye operation. Thank God the operation went well. At the same time, my house got a new member, my sister-in-law gave birth to his 2nd child. I have a 2nd nephew at New Year day itself!

February – I got a girlfriend, the best ever girlfriend.

March - I started a small business amidst the oil and economy crisis. And the same time, I told my girlfriend it will be very tough for both of us.

April to October – A lot of problems, small and big happened in my new business, such as cash flow, staffing, projects, vendors, exchange rates, collection, and many others. I was trying to solve one by one. Some of them managed to solve, and some of them are not being resolved till today. Thank God that amidst the problems, the business is consider going upwards.

September – My girlfriend decided to leave me. I think I have no choice, but I can only wish her all the best. I was upset for 3 months, and now I feel good again.

October – My brother was headhunted by loan sharks. His boss managed to settle all debts for him, but he has to pay back monthly. Where did he spend the money? Nobody knows but only him. In less than a month, he was fired by the boss due to the loss of his trustworthy.

November - Some of customer friends who are expatriates being retrenched. The economy seems not getting any better till now. Perhaps I made a right decision to employ and fight for myself, at least either fail or succeed, and I do not have to worry about retrenchment from the company. On a side note, Donald Trump won the presidency of USA. That's really motivates me a lot. It's further strengthen my believe that nothing is impossible.

December – Business is slowing down tremendously for this month and I’ve a lot of free time to think about what to do for next year. It’s scaring as the local economy situation is getting worse, and most of my customers are planning to cut cost further for next year. And I also heard that a lot of my peers are cutting people and cost, just to keep surviving. I strongly believe it’s time for a change, a drastic change to survive, instead of stay there to wait for the situation to turn better. But I do not have a solution yet, all I can do is just try and error with cost.

For stock investment, it is a good year for me after made loss consecutively for 2 years. It seems I found a better way of doing stock investment.

For 2017, it will be another extremely challenging year to me, especially in my business prospect. In fact, human life itself is always full of challenges. Since I’ve started this, I’ll take the challenges and try to break them through. That’s what I plan for 2017. Succeed or fail, it will be determined by my action and luck.

I’m taking a break starting from tomorrow till New Year. I will make use of this break to restart my engine in order to walk further.

Merry Christmas, folks!

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Property vs Stock Investment – Part 1

Are you doing any property or stock investment?

I believe so, as this is a very common question when you come to investment. There are many other investments such as business, franschise, forex, pyramid, FD, bond, mutual fund, etc, why must be property and stock investment?

I recalled about this when I read one of the Milan Doshi books. He mentioned that the best investment vehicle in the world are property and stock investment, and both of them are good enough until now. I believe what he meant is level of risk and return.

Among these 2 investment vehicles, which one do you prefer?

I did ask many ex-colleagues and friends when I was young due to curiosity. Most answers I got was NONE and was given all sort of excuses. For those who do not have property, they complained that properties are too expensive, not able to get loan, too high commitment, hard to find a suitable one, only have one for self-occupied, etc.  Whereby for stock investment, they complained that it is too risky, return too low or too slow, index is too high, economy no good, etc.

Surprisingly, most of them shared that they have other kind of investments, such as doing part times jobs, part time agents like insurance or direct sales, own small businesses, get rich fast scheme, etc. In fact, there’s nothing wrong, because it’s about investment and the highest return wins.

Well, I used to stay away from stock and property investment. Only after I came out to society for 8 years, I realized if continue to work for others and without investment, it is a dead end. We all feeling the pressure of the rising of inflation rate and cost living, while salary increment is not able to catch up. Hence, I started both of my 1st property and stock investment back in year 2009.

To be continued…

Sunday, December 11, 2016

What's the Authority of a Country Leader?

I was listening to radio while driving this morning, the hosts talked about the authority and power of the king in the country currently enjoying. From what they discussed, with the full authority has been assigned to prime minister, there’s nothing much left for the king. However, the king still has some basic authority such as election approval.

When I was at primary 3, my dad told me that the king used to have full authority and power. They do no need to go to jail even they kill people. That triggered my curiosity, because I listened wrongly as I thought the current king does not has to go to jail if he kills people. I did ask my teacher and she told me anyone commit crime, they will have to go to jail including king. At that time, I really thought so.

When I grow up, I realized that’s not the case. Whoever has the full authority and power, most of them are able to escape from going to jail even they committed crimes. Let’s take a look at the cases happened in our country, the murder case of Altantuya with C4 boom by 2 high position polices. Who has the authority to instruct them to do so? Who is actually the person behind? Why there’s no one put to jail until today?

Another greatest case is the recent 1MDB scandal. Why Singapore and USA have already proven it is a scandal and a lot of money pumped out have been slipped out to relevant people, why our leader still insisted 1MDB is making money and ignored about these news? Why can’t whole picture be matched?

I strongly believe it is not only in our country, but involving in our countries around the world. Look at how Thaksin and Yingluck, the ex-PMs of Thailand, how they got expelled, etc. Who the leader is behind is able to overruled PM? Isn’t it interesting?

What does the moral of this story? 

Full authority to a leader is a double edge sword. If the leader uses it properly, the country will excel. Look at where is Singapore now and 50 years ago. I strongly believe USA and Philippine will shine in the next 3 to 5 years. If the leader abuses it, then the citizens and the next generation will suffered like hell, just like…

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Listen to Positive or Negative Feedback?

Last week, a good friend and I were having coffee and chi chat over a coffee shop. We talked about the near term prospects of our own companies and how to overcome this low crude oil and bad economy crisis. 

His plan is to expand to neighbor countries due to similar culture and business strategy, but he has the concern on limited cash flow, confidence level and know how. Basically he is doing cabling infrastructure distribution and services business. From what I noticed, he is doing very well on services over the past few years because of his public relations, reasonable price and being very flexible in doing business. Most of the customers like to deal with them. 

For their distribution business, it compliments with their projects and services, I guess may be about 15-25% of the total annual sales. A good thing about their distribution business is, all the products are self-developed and they have a lot better margins compared to the local rivals. Right now, his plan is to focus only on distribution business in neighbor country. 

I commented that I don't really look good on neighbor country even it's a much bigger cake, as the cabling infrastructure there are more mature and competitive than local market. Yes, they have their own brand and they are able to control the cost and selling price. But these cable items are very mature in the market, what makes me want to change brand or vendor? Are both solving the same problems? Unless you tell me I can make more margin by using your product? 

Well, this is traditional trading game and the price can only go lower and lower with lesser margin. With his concern in mind, it might be a waste of time and money, unless he has a out-of-the-box business strategy. I did advice him to try participate in international fair in the neighbor country and check out the response before rush in just like that. 

Unfortunately, free advice is always useless, people just don't appreciate it. He got pissed off. He scolded me for depreciating his products and he feedback that if everyone think like me, then no one is going to expand overseas. Well, it is true but that's only for those losers who stopped by the negative feedback. What I mean is he can actually leverage on those negative feedback to move forward! 

Well, I get his point why he is angry. From the way I noticed, most of the bosses or entrepreneurs do not like people provide negative feedback about their company, especially on their ideas, plans and solutions. Perhaps they were having hard time to make it over, and they think they need to be recognize badly. 

In my opinion, if one only want to listen positive feedback and fake comment, then I don't see this topic needs to be brought up and discussed anymore in the near future. When I reached home, I did apologize and text him we would not discuss about his company again and he is fine with it. 

I hope he'll ponder over my comments before he takes action. I wish him all the best for his overseas expansion.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Do You Possess Multi-Millionaires Traits?

I will stay at home to study public listed company (stock investment) and read Internet articles on Sunday noon and night normally. Some how I have great interest in doing this, and I feel very relax by doing it. ;) Of course, the ultimate purpose is to make me stronger, more knowledgeable, obtain higher return on business and investment.

I came across a simple article about the usual traits of the multi-millionaires, which I think it is quite true from what I noticed over multi-millionaires around me. I would like to share with you here.

There's a research center spent 5 years time to study 177 multi-millionaires, and they discovered the following 12 traits from these successful people. For those multi-millionaires climbing all the way up from the ground, they have their success reasons behind, and these are the traits.

1. They read frequently, and relentlessly upgrade their knowledge and mindset.
2. They exercise regularly and stay healthy.
3. They get to know other successful people and expand their networks.
4. They relentlessly seek for their own goals, they are persistence.
5. They wake up early.
6. They have multiple income sources, including business and investment.
7. They have mentor/s.
8. They have positive and aggressive attitude.
9. They do not follow the crowd.
10. They help others to be succeeded (so they can ride on others to earn more?).
11. They spend time to think and ponder over problems and future trend, daily.
12. They seek for feedback from others.

Sounds simple? Out of these 12 traits, how many of them you think you are currently possessing them? I think item 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 11 and 12 are not that difficult, most of us can try to achieve them. But from what I noticed, we might not become millionaire even we possess all these 12 traits. Why is that?

Well, these are just common traits from these 177 multi-millionaires, or more. But doesn't mean the study proved that possess these 12 traits then you will become millionaires. We still need ideas, courage, resources and support to achieve it.

Being an entrepreneur, I realized what it takes to be successful. If we able to possess 12 traits above, it does help us a lot to be successful.

Some of us chose to be mediocre, that's fine. But some of us still have dreams and want to be rich. Anyhow, it's good to try to do business at least once and last it at least 1-2 years when you are young and single, then you will experience something you'll never get to experience in your life!

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Make America Great Again?

Yes, it was the biggest news of the year everybody talked about last week. Donald Trump beaten Clinton and won the US president election.

I like what Trump always shared in books, go big or go home. This time, he really went big and he got the president. To be honest, I did not expect him to win, or if he win, he will not win by outnumber. However, I have been admiring him since The Apprentice. Because he is an outstanding businessman. His business tactics are weird and won't be used by gentlemen, but somehow they are effective.

So what tactics he actually used for this election?

1. Pretend
Trump pretends he is the best, even though he is not. He pretends he is the best president by painting a good future for the citizens. He talked like he is perfect, but in fact he has weaknesses. Anyway, pretend only can be achieved by highly confident and ego person, like him. Why he likes to do so? Imagine if he always tell lies, will he succeed until today? That's his strategy. If he is confident he can do it, he will pretend to be succeed first. Make America Great Again, he really pained a bright future picture for the America with this slogan.

2. Depreciate Opponents
He likes to play this game. Look at how he depreciate Clinton, her husband and Obama. I also remembered how he depreciated Richard Branson and many people in his books. That's his 'always use' strategy.

3. Exaggerate
He ballooned most of the promises and facts. Do you think he really can convince Mexico will pay and build the wall? Can US really ban every incoming muslim? All don't make sense. Come on. And he talked the mass he has net worth of $10B? Buffet asked him to prove by showing income tax report, he doesn't even dare to prove it. However, do you think he wants to make you believe it? No. That is not his point. Trump just wants your attention, everyone's attention. And guess what, he made it. Everyone can now remember what he promised and told!

Another tactic he likes to use in his business is lawsuit. Trump likes to make use of lawsuit to take advantage, so no one dare to mess up with him. That's rich people's game.

Anyway, those are just my observation and comments. I personally do have great respect to him as a successful businessman and confident person. I read his books and watch The Apprentice, and I'm into what he advice. It's useful.

I wish all the best for Trump as the coming president, hope he can really makes America great again!

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Live Again But Even Worse?

Have you ever think of back to the future and live again?

Sometimes, or most of the times, we made wrong decisions and bad things happened on us. How we wish to go back to the future and do the right things and make us rich!

I watched a China local made comedy movie last night, named 'Goodbye Mr. Loser'. That's reminds me of a Hollywood movie 'Click' act by Adam Sandler which I watched about 10 years ago. The story line depicts about a useless man where he doesn't work since graduated and fully relying on his wife for a living. His wife was his school mate and they grew up together. But he is not happy about his current situation.

One day, he attended his first love (campus belle) wedding luncheon, he was humiliated by his wife and he falls asleep in the wash room. When he wake up, he is back to the secondary school time. This time, he is trying to avoid his wife and go after his campus belle. The interesting part is, he thought of create and sing back those songs that the 'future' celebrities have sang, including Jay Chow's songs, etc. So he got rich very easily after that and get everything he wants physically.

However, he doesn't feel happy as he was before. His new wife, campus belle married to him because of his money and fame. They do not really have love in between. One of his ex-classmates sticks with him because of the same things as well. And he is also sick and under pressure of those celebrities keep pressing him for composing new songs. So he started to spend money to have relationships with many other women.

One day, he bumps into an ex-classmate and he told him about his ex-wife sacrificed her body for him in an incident. He was so touched and he started to think back the beauty of his ex-wife, and what did he did for him. He regrets what he did and he is trying to give up everything and retrieve back his ex-wife. But it's too late, his ex-wife has married to his ex-classmate. He tried to exchange all his wealth with his ex-classmate for his ex-wife, but he was hit by his ex-classmate and admitted to hospital.

After that, the doctor found out he is infected with HIV. At the same time, his mother falls in love with his ex-classmate who loves his money. He feel that he was in disaster and a lot worse than his previous life. He decided to give up his life by declining to accept HIV treatment.

After all the disasters, he wake up and realized he just fall asleep in the wash room. He happily rush out and look for his wife. They got back and live happily together after that. That's more or less the same story line with 'Click' isn't it?

I was crying like hell when I watched towards the end of 'Click'. And I watched it few times! So for this one, I did drop my tears, but not as bad as Click as it is more or less the same story line.

Well, what's the similar moral of the 2 stories?
1. Don't upset about your current situation or problem. If you are given a chance and live again, it might be worse of making other decisions. Be happy, face and enjoy it, because you only live once!
2. Get rich or pretty girl friend doesn't means you can handle it, there's too many things you need to sacrifice!
3. Treat your girl friend or wife better, because she may be the best candidate among all!

On the other hand, the story doesn't ask you not to work hard to create your own wealth. Just that we try not to look back anymore, but move forward!

Have a nice weekend, folks.

Sunday, November 6, 2016


My mum called me yesterday evening while I was having my dinner at home.

She told me that my brother is being officially informed by his company to relocate to a suburban town (about 8 hours drive from my hometown) with pay cut of 25% and accommodation is not included. She told me my brother has no choice but to reject it and resign. She asked me if there's any vacation suitable for him over here.

In my opinion, isn't it very obvious that his boss is asking him to get the hell out of his company without any compensation. He has been working for that company for about 7 years as sales executive and that's how he being treated after all. Of course, may be he did something wrong, may be he did not hit his sales target, or the company is facing difficulty in such economy situation, I don't really know as he did not tell us about it in details.

What I want to share with you is that, you can be hardworking today, but it doesn't mean you can do so the next year same day. It's because your commitment will increase. For example, got married and having children. Or you are a top sales today, doesn't mean you will be the top sales again the next year. It's because things changed rapidly nowadays, with the advent of technology.

I have seen a 6 years consecutive top insurance salesperson suddenly shift his career to become a training / seminar coach! When being asked why, he said technology changed too fast, he cannot be continuously doing the same thing while want to get more income. So he has decided to change his career, take the big risk and try something new with a lot bigger potential income. The interesting part is, he makes use of social media to be part of his marketing tool. Well, perhaps it's very common in the developed countries. But in my hometown of only 800k population, that's rare!

In contrary, what I noticed is my brother has been doing the same thing over the past 7 years. Yes, perhaps he can easily hit the quota with his intelligence and hard work for the 1st few years and the boss should likes him. But situation and thing have changed over time. Especially with the advent of technology, thing changes very rapidly over the past few years. In addition, Malaysia economy is facing downturn since a couple of years ago. Local careers are getting tougher and complicated nowadays.

My brother is turning to 39 next year, which he falls in his mid life crisis of being jobless. He has a wife and 2 kids of 7 year old and 1 year old to feed, with the inflation rate of almost 60-80% from 7 years ago. What make him worsen is, he has no savings and rely heavily on my parents. I'm sure he is facing a lot of pressure now.

So what next for him? He told my mum he will try to look for a job. But for how confident he is, I do not know. But I need to help him. How to help? I will ask around locally and in my hometown to see if there's any job opportunity for him. That's what the best I can do for him for now.

Anyway, jobless is not hopeless. We need to encourage him to overcome this.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Savings during Hard Time?

Under the current high inflation and global economy recession, do you find it is extremely difficult to have savings?

Over the past 7 to 8 years, inflation has eroded the value of the country's currency, including currency exchange with USD, booming of property prices, introduction of GST from the Government, removal of Government subsidies such as petrol, cooking oil, sugar, etc. 

Basically a plate of kolomee in my hometown has shot up from RM4.00 in 2008 to RM7.50 today. That means whatever cash I have in hand and bank account has drastically drop almost 50% in value during these 7-8 years, about 6-7% inflation per year. The inflation seems like started to slow down since last year, but it is just temporary from my point of view.

So in such situation, does it means it is still worth to do savings? In my opinion, I think savings is indispensable. Why? Everything need money. Yes, money is inflated and drop drastically in value, might as well use them now instead of 5-7 years later, right? But what's the point of spending money on unnecessary stuffs? The money is hard earn from our monthly pay check, this is why we need more savings. But is it by tighten our belts further? Or how?

The world is changing, including the way to make more money and savings. We need to be creative and innovative with the fast pace of everyone is trying to move forward. I myself is very stingy in person, but I feel the pain of saving very less nowadays, due to inflation and lower income comparing to the good times. I have done my best to save as much as I can during the good day. Now are the bad days where I have very less income and I can tell you I have no savings over the past 1.5 years! So I chose to be generous since a couple of months ago. 

Due to the high cost living nowadays, my savings are depleted quite fast. The only resolution I thought is to look for more income. That is why I started my own business early last year. I failed 2 times miserably but I still wake up and tried the 3rd time early this year. 

What I'm trying to share is, savings is not enough. To leverage on your money is the only way to go, either through investment, doing business, part time, get commission via sales, etc. Many people would like to stay in comfortable zone by just want to try something easy. Imagine this easy ways you and I can try easily, how much do you think the return is? Another example is ponzy scheme. If the investment return is so high and good, why is your turn? All they need is just your money. Think twice. 

There's no free lunch in this world. If you want to achieve something extraordinary, you really need to work extra hard and solve a lot of problems to get through it. 

Have a nice weekend, folks.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Facing and Solving Problems

Everyone has problems and everyone has to face problems. If you take more responsibilities as a person, be it in your career, family or association, you will face even more problems. Expect problems? I don't think most of us like it.

Due to I'm running a new business, I'm facing problems almost everyday. Those problems can be ranging from small to big, easy to challenging, less headache to very headache. Most of the times, the problems are not able to resolve within couple of days or weeks, it takes months! Imagine how can I sleep peacefully with these problems in mind. Sometimes, I just have one thought, give up.

Anyway, no matter what, I have chose my own career path. I want to be successful in my career and to be the few % out of 100. I have no choice, but to continue to run it alone for now. I have always tried my very best to solve every problem comes. Sometimes I solved it with very lazy and stupid way, sometimes luck is with me and solve it eventually.

Along the way, facing and solving problems really provided me a lot of invaluable experience. Imagine you are trying to solve a problem for more than 6 months, and you finally solve it one day! How do you feel? Joy, excited, want to tell yourself, 'finally!'. Yes, I have this feeling. It's a pain process.

From my recent experience, there are few ways that can help relieving the pain of solving problems. When facing problems, we may:
1) Ask for help from the right candidate. For example, if you face technical issue, talk to your technical friends or ask for the right contacts from whoever know about it. This is the best way I've encountered, but somehow people tend to forget.
2) Google / Internet sourcing. Yes, it helps a lot sometimes!
3) Get a mentor or join the relevant association / forum.
4) Think and practice. Right practice makes perfect. Once you always solves relevant problems, you will definitely become better.
5) Follow your guts. When you have no choice, you may just follow your guts after listened to few comments. Remember the word AFTER, not simply follow your guy first. It works most of the time.
6) Pray. It may not completely helps, but it injects more confidence into our decision. God is with us. :)

Happy facing and solving problems.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Back from Hometown Lesson

I was back to my hometown for about 6 days 5 nights last weekend.

Well, this trip is quite busy as this time there's a ex-cell group friend also back from Singapore for vacation. I have almost 10 years did not meet her already.

I managed to catch up with some old friends for a coffee session, and one of them wedding invitation card to us. Most of them are climbing the corporate ladders, except one doing small F&B business. Compare to them, perhaps I look a little bit more successful as an entrepreneur. But unfortunately, I'm the worst among all of us as I have 7 months did not get my salary due to the company has not sufficient income.

The following night we were gathering with some of our ex-cell group members. All of them still look quite young, and not marry yet even though we are approaching 40 soon. The only married person is the lady friend who back from Singapore, who married 8 years back with 2 kids.

The following day's evening I had badminton session with ex-church fellows. A good play but it seems they are short of players.

The night before I flew back to working place, I had a coffee session with some ex-church young adult fellows. They look happy go lucky. Perhaps that's one of the ways to release stress. Similarly, most of them also not married yet.

In conclusion, what happen to the young adult in my hometown now, including myself?!

After I broke up with my girl friend last month, she let me realized my problems. I better correct them as soon as possible and I hope I'm the next one deliver the invitation card!

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Practice Makes Perfect?

I read an Internet article recently about the current top NBA player, Stephen Curry on how he fight all the way up in his career.

Well, the old always tell us that nothing is easy when it comes to making money, every success has a huge price behind. If we want to success continuously, the continuous huge effort is inevitably.  Else it will not last long.

Back to Curry's daily practice, there is one particular part impressed me a lot. Needless to say he is always the first person arrives in the court for training. When their daily training session is over, he volunteer to stay back and shoot 5 consecutive shots from the penalty line, without touching the ring before he allows to go home. Once the ball touches the ring or not in, he has to reset until the mission is completed.

Imagine this is a very challenging job. We make me lucky to get 1 or 2 shots without touching the ring. But 5 consecutive shots, you do not need lucky but you needs high accuracy and skill. And that is why he is so flexible and accurate in his shot today. I make me immediate think of 'practice makes perfect'.

The old also says, practice doesn't makes perfect, but only 'right' practice makes perfect. Do the right thing relentlessly with right coaching, you can see the improvement faster. Once you see the improvement, this is where it motivates you to move up further.

I'm thinking, can this be applicable to entrepreneurship and business as well? May be or partly, but from different aspects, and even more challenging. The only chance you can practice is before you start your business, when you are working with others and leverage on your free time to study and learn.

But for coaching, who the hell want to coach you when comes to making money? Aren't the mentors are self-benefit oriented? Either you pay, you contribute or they simply give lazy advice to you. Will your mentor responsible if you lose money? Think again.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

A Surprised Call Last Night

I was very surprised last night, where a primary & secondary school closed friend called me and told me that he is getting married by end of this year. He is asking whether I can attend his wedding ceremony.

Actually with our age, nothing to be surprised as we supposed to get married few years back. But for this friend, I must raise my salute. Along his life, he has yet to date any girl. Meaning he does not has any girl friend before this. Why? Perhaps he has no interest, as I don't think he is shy type.

When we met up during Chinese New Year, about 7 months ago, he still told me that he still has not yet find his Mrs. right.

Anyway, it is definitely a good news and congratulate to him. His family should be also very proud of him. Just that I don't even know who is his Mrs. Right. I will going back to my hometown to meet him soon to find out.

I'm not sure if I can attend his wedding due to my current financial and business situation. I only have few closed friends, he is one of the very few and keep in touch until this year. I'll definitely trying to support him whenever I can. :)

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Broke Up

Most of the time, we do things according to our habit and preference. And most of the time, we did not considerate enough the love one surrounding us.

I was dumped by girl friend few days ago. She told me I'm too selfish, I always did not think in her perspective and only care about my career. She complained that her friends are even better than me as a friend. I'm so upset when I heard it.

I admitted I did it in wrongly, even though I still think there's miscommunication and I'm trying to do thing without her knowledge. But eventually it comes to a stop, where she cannot stands due to the pressure from her career and friends.

I'm regretting these few days and I've tried to salvage the relationship but she refused to give me a chance to revive.

I have pondered over it the entire night, I think I will have to solve the problem instead of keep myself upset and abandoned. I'm assured that I still like her and not afford to lose her. I need to take actions and adjust my characteristics to win her heart back.

Well, think, talk and plan are always easy. When it comes to action, it is the main challenge. It's about perseverance and courage.

Stay tune.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Movie Review: Train to Busan

It is a public holiday today, so we drove to neighbor city to buy something and watched Train to Busan at the same time.

I would say the movie ticket price has been shot up a lot followed by the inflation. About 16-20 years ago, I remember it was only $4 to $5 during weekend. The movie ticket we bought yesterday was $16 including 6% GST! That's scaring. That means if I have $5m today, It may be only worth less than $1.25m 20 years later. It seems like the people really have to earn more for future retirement, and hope that the children won't cause much financial trouble.

Back to movie review, Train to Busan is a korean action and thriller movie lasted for almost 2 hours. The main handsome actor and pretty actress reminds me of an movie, named ;Silenced; which was acted by both of the same actors. I still remembered it very much.

In fact, almost everyone knows this movie is actually a copy cat of 'World War Z' (WWZ) acted by Brad Pitt 3 years ago. From the look at it, the zombie character is almost identical - hyperactive, only know how to run and bite victim, sensitive to sound, virus spread in minutes, etc. The only difference is zombie cannot see target without sunlight. And of course, the entire excitement is also came from WWZ - Zombies attacking human.

In fact, there are too many uncommon sense, illogical scenes and actions found in the movie, especially towards the end of it which totally think the director treated the audience are stupid. This movie is not so focus on story line and logical sense, but focus more to make the audience being excited and thrilled. It's nothing wrong with that, every director has their own tactic to film it. Overall, the movie is still pretty worth to watch just like WWZ if you like action movie.

Some of the examples of illogical scenes:
1. From the beginning when all passengers have entered the train, how can the train station only has 1 guard out there and where's the rests, passengers and CCTV surveillance?
2. How come the 3 ladies and the man can closed up the toilet door when the zombie already discovered their location? And the scene is not even finished?
3. The train's glass finally break when the fat actor trying to close it. The rests are unbreakable.
4. How come the old man and the male attendance can escaped from the massacre by the zombies and managed to hide in the toilet?
5. How come suddenly there's a train on fire and crush into other train? Just because want to arrange the other actors die?
6. There's a train driver became zombie and found 'inside' the self driving train with the door closed. So who bite him inside the train?
7. The old train driver trying to rescue the old man from zombie. An old man to rescue an old man? How can he helps when the zombies run faster than both of them?
8. The old man is able to catch up the last train, but he doesn't know how to operate the train. How come the train speed is only increase when the main actors are trying to catch it up?
9. How come the old man takes so long to transform into zombie (from being bitten till the actors get on board, and still have time to talk non-sense)? Just because he wants to finish the conversation with the main actor? Why not the actor just finish him off the train before he transforms to zombie?
10. The final 5 mins part is the most ridiculous part at Busan tunnel. I think just because the director wants to make you feel excited by trying to kill the pretty actress and kid. Other than that, the whole scene is unnecessary. Remember the zombie does not walk as usual in the dark. And how come all other zombies died outside the tunnel, but the army stayed remains inside? How to spot enemy?

After all these non-senses, the moral of the movie is good. More and more humans are becoming selfish but they are unaware, due to the stress working environment and cruel reality. Someone will need to sacrifice and become the leader, the rests may follow.

Anyway, below is my personal review on Train to Busan:
Cast: 7.5/10
Plot: 3.5/10
Effect: 8.5/10
Action: 9/10
Story line: 6/10
Overall: 6.9/10

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Be Flexible

2 days ago, I went to one of the money changers in the town to transmit some payments to few suppliers in the morning. This house is considered the largest money changer in the town (in a tiny country) and have 6 counters and more than 15 seats in the waiting area. As it is early of the month, the money changer is full of customers. My ticket number is about 30+ from the current one.

While waiting, I took a look at the exchange rate. It is terribly low compared to the Internet rate. From what I can recalled, the other money changers nearby are not as many customers as this one. I'm thinking why there's tonnes of people still want to come here to remit money? I have to come to this house because I need to remit to company instead of personal account. And according to my accountant friend, this is the house that I can do so with lower transaction fee of few dollars only.

I bumped into my ex-colleague and he told me that a lot of people like this house because it has a lower transaction fee and the recipient can receive the money within the same day.

I continue to wait. The more I'm waiting and calculate, the more I feel something is not right. I decided to call my banker and ask for today's exchange rate. The rate is about 1.5 points higher than this house. Even the bank transaction fees are 3 times higher, it seems the total amount still slightly lower than this house. I might as well go back and do online money transfer!

As it still has 20 over numbers before my turn, I decided to walk over to a mall which has my bank as I need to ask them how to do online TT to the payment country.

When I entered to the mall, I noticed a money changer which I used to do personal remittance back to my hometown and there's only 1 customer doing the transaction at that time. And the exchange rate is 2.5 points higher than the 1st house. Even the transaction fee is doubled than the 1st house, if it exceeded certain amount, it is still worth it. And most importantly, I do not have to wait at all.

Out of curiosity, I just asked them whether they do company payment, and they said yes. I immediately pass them the details, open an account and I complete the transactions within 20 mins.

What's the moral of my story?
1. Do not simply follow other's advice. There's always better alternative, to explore if you have the time or no choice.
2. Be flexible. When thing doesn't works, try to look for alternative instead of stick to the plan.
3. Ask around. Sometimes the only thing you need to do is, just asking around.


Sunday, August 21, 2016

My 34th Birthday

Time flies. I was having my 34th year old birthday last Tuesday. 

My girl friend was kind enough to celebrate my birthday by treated me to a downtown high-end steak house, complimented with a gift that I wanted quite some times ago. I really love the blue cheese wayu steak in the restaurant, it's very delicious and unforgettable. Just that it's a little bit pricey. It's too bad that we've forgotten to take a photo for memory and show you here as we are too excited over the dinner.

To review the past 1 year, it's been a extremely challenging year for me especially the 2nd half. I'm losing a lot of momentum due to a series of mistakes caused by my impulsive and immature decisions. And there are problems accumulating and pending to be resolved. On the other hand, I thank God that I've received a lot of blessings and support from my girl friend, closed friends and mentors. Thank you for that and I hope I can return you guys the favor as much as I can.

Moving Forward, I have yet to think much about it, as I'm still a lost sheep. But I will try to sustain by learning from my past mistakes and grab as much opportunity available as possible. That's what most of us are trying to do right.

I will try to continue my current journey, as where I have chose to start it earlier. I hope I can do it even it's extremely challenging, even I just have a little bit confidence left. That's my wish for my birthday.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Give Up vs Persistance

I just read an article from a business magazine about how an entrepreneur faced multiple huge failures over the decades, how he kept his persistence to overcome these failures, and become a very successful businessman today. How many entrepreneurs are actually can be successful like him?

Do you still remember a lot of wise people said, 100 people became entrepreneur, 90 of them gave up and failed within the 1st year. Another 9 sustaining but closing anytime and left only 1 person came up.

It's a no brainer thing. If doing business is easy, then most of us are making money from business and we do not have to work for others anymore. That's why when we want to become entrepreneur, think twice, get advice and make proper decision before step out. This is because it is extremely challenging to be success. Even if you first trial is smooth, the waves will come continuously and make you mentally stress and tiring. I have tried & still trying it now and no doubt about it. Sometimes, you even cannot turn back because you have invested all your resources and money into it, or even owing investors lots of money.

Why 90% people failed within the 1st year, if not 2nd or 3rd year? There can be lots of reasons, out of capital, cash flow issue, lack of customer, lack of profit, high cost, competition, poor product or services, etc. But the major reasons are lack of determination and without persistence, or we call it give up easily.

When we face problem, especially it is monetary involve, we we tend to be stressed. After tried a couple of times but failed to resolve it, we tend to give up. That's very normal. If we apply this to a business, that's where the business ends because we give up.

That's why when you read a lot of successful businessmen stories, they will share with you they failed big first, or at least encountered big issues, before they succeed. If you did not experience it before, you might have just read it through but you will be more focus on his later part of success. For those surviving businessmen, they will have the common touch if they read it, because they have experienced the same thing. Other people may not experience and understand how hard it is. Sleepless nights, reluctant to go to work to face the problems in the morning, begging friends / relatives for help, etc. These activities will make you feel like giving up easily. That's common.

Give up is very easily, you just need to avoid or close the business. Businessmen always told us, never give up. How easy this came from their mouths? Persistence is extremely challenging, you may still fail if you persistence or do not make the right change. It's not only apply to business, but similar goes to relationship, sales, get no.1 in competition, get rich, return of investment, etc.

Since it is so difficult, why we want to do business or be persistence then? Think about the reward, before you think about giving up. If the reward is huge enough, then we should give it another try.

The classic example is Malaysia Badminton No.1 Lee Chong Wei. Did you read his book? Did you see how many failures he encountered along his journey? And do you still see him in the arena now? Did he give up to move one step further? What's motivates him from giving up? He is a classic example of perseverance, a very good example for us to learn.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Being Mediocre or Outstanding?

Sometimes, we want to do and invest something, but because it's involving our hard earn money, perhaps to certain extend, we are hesitate whether want to go for it. For example, property, stock investment, become an entrepreneur, MLM and so on. Go big or go home, how?

We used to hear or see, some people made a lot money from doing business, investing in properties, stock market, forex, joining MLM, etc. They made us rethink whether we want to join them. On the other hand, we also heard a lot of failures around. And we are hesitating how much actually we want to invest, go or not.

From my experience, life is like that. There's no definite or sure-win path for you to follow, and most of the time there are uncertainty and uncomfortable of making these decisions, especially involving your hard earn money. But still, we need to move on, we need to extend our wealth and make our living more comfortable. So somehow we will need to make certain decisions on investment and career.

It comes to the level of daring.

Most of the time, we are wondering why some people are just daring to invest this and that, and even with such a huge amount. Don't they afraid they lose their hard earn money? Well, to certain extend, I believe some of them are just gambling and trying their luck. They do not want to be mediocre, they want to succeed else fail. I also strong believe minority of them have calculated their risks, gathered their past experience and make the best decisions out of all.

I have been putting a lot of efforts in looking into running business, property and stock market investment over the past 7 years. I have tried most of them, starting from small, made tonnes of mistakes, tried big and still fails, as well as don't do anything and let opportunity passed by. Honestly, I failed quite miserably. Why?

I think I do not have the determination. I also do not have the patient to wait.

When market is good, I just tried 10%. When market is even better, I started to reduce my stake to 0%. When market is at it's best, I cannot stand and went in with 50%. Then burn my hand. Same with doing business. Does it means I do not have the qualification to invest and do business?

No, I don't think so.

Everyone stands a chance to success. Not every baby can run before walk. Even though I spent a lot of efforts in studying and understanding it, it does not mean guarantee success. I'm lack of experience, and I also admit that I have limited patience. Remember, life is full of expectation especially you want to walk out of your comfortable zone. My advice is to expect it, ready to be all out and lose whatever you currently have. Then you are qualify to gain more.

It's a bit too lengthy for today. Will try to continue my sharing again.

Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Lesson of Making Mistakes

Everybody makes mistakes, including the most successful person.

There are 2 types of persons. One type is they admit they made mistake. The other type is they deny their mistake, including successful person. However, this is not important in our discussion today.

From what I experiencing, a person tends to make more mistakes when they are weak, continuously fails and in bad luck. When I continuously made few mistakes, I started to panic and needless to say, the following decisions are screwed.

I used to hear a lot of successful people shared with me, DO NOT afraid to make mistake. It is a simple advice, but that's not a complete story. From what I experienced, I would advice, DO NOT afraid to make mistake, ONLY AFTER you have access your possible risk / loss.

To be honest, nobody afraid to make mistake, or more mistakes, but there's a price to pay, including financially and resources loss. Let's take stock investment as an example. If we can accept we loss the money, then we have no problem to invest our money in stock market and make mistakes. However, when you have invested 10 times and you failed all of them, how do you feel? Where's your confidence level? Will you try again or so call DO NOT afraid to make mistake?

Well, may be still have minority never give up. But it's our hard earn money, we do not need to sacrifice them just like that. So try not to listen others by telling a comfortable story then ended with DO NOT afraid to make mistake. Mistake needs to be paid, not your parents, not your family, but you! We have to take responsibility of the decision we made.

Yes, there's no doubt that the lesser commitment and younger we are, the more dynamic that we can get up from our mistake. Because we have time to wake up and earn back the money and resources again. But in fact, how many chances do we actually have to try for most of us here?

Donald Trump used to say "Go big, or go home!", which may be true. If allows, we should take a big risk to do 1 big mistake for a huge price to pay, but the reward is infinite, rather than do small mistakes that make us sick. Anyhow, we came to this world with empty handed, and when we leave, we will do the same.

Yes, I'm trying to go big now, but I'm currently in a very deep shit situation, where the challenges are 10 times harder than what I expected. When I see others enjoying their life and relaxing, I'm 200% envy them. But somehow I chose to make this mistake with huge price to pay, I have to stay focus and continue trying. And not sure for how long before I give up....

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Whatever It Is, Be Steady

Are you a steady person? What is steady in our Asian culture means?

From what I understand, steady means claim, not being emotional, look smart and experience. I have to admit I'm not a steady person. Whenever I encounter something need to fork out money, I'm panic. No doubt I'm still a very stingy and calculative person.

2 days ago, I bumped into a minor car accident. The guy is obviously wrong by banging behind. Due to some documents I'm missing and the guy feel that I'm frightening, he tried to threaten me by calling the police.

I did call a colleague I think he may able to help, but end up he is worse when he dropped by. We tried to settle without calling the police. End up I almost have to bear all the accident cost, which is a pain lesson for me.

I'm trying to be a gentleman, but in another word, I'm just a fool, paying unnecessary cost which is supposed to be paid by the other party. I tried to complain to few friends, no doubt I'm recognized as a fool.

What I learned from this lesson? Be steady. No matter what happen, we need to be steady and claim. We are all human, we are frighten when we are weak or having weak point. Do not expect someone can always help us, we have to learn to help ourselves by remain steady. Please bear in mind the other person does not know we have weak point, and they may have weak point too. Hence, we have to be steady even we are weak.

Do not show on our face that we are weak. We do not need to be afraid just because others threatening us. Perhaps we should make it bigger and let them scare us. If they hit us, then even better, they will have to responsible of what they did to us.

Of course, to remain steady, it needs time to learn and grow. Practice it in your daily life, go out and face more strangers, do something that you are uncomfortable but remain claim. These may help us grow our steadiness within us.

Hope this 2 cents this helps.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Positive vs Negative

I have met a couple of positive speaking people recently.

What I mean is, no matter how bad or worse a thing is, they will claim that it is very good and positive. For example, if one of his good staffs left the company, he will tell you that the company is changing strategy so this staff has to let go. But in fact, it is the staff who chose to leave the company for better prospect. Another example will be the business is getting worse and you know they are not doing well as well, he will tells you that they are still doing good and in the midst of doing cost cutting exercise.

It makes me a little bit sick sometimes as I thought they are a bunch of liar and just want people think good of them. I definitely don't like them, because they make me feel sick. And we do not really have mutual topics to talk about, because you know they are sharing something not true but just being positive.

However, I discovered they have something in common. They are successful in their business, getting rich and continuing to pursue their dreams by being positive. Even though I don't think we can benefit anything from them, why they need to lie to people by being positive?

Perhaps that's the difference between the rich and the poor, mindset and thinking. Perhaps I'm always being honest, and I don't want people to get sick of me. However, to be successful in one thing, sometimes positive attitude is very important. When you told others you are there, mean you have to be there. I'm definitely not there yet, but I'm learning. ;)

Sunday, March 13, 2016

Funders and Founders

My apology for did not making any updates for weeks.

I came across a very interesting web site this morning, Funders and Founders.

This web site demonstrates on start-up and geek related articles, including start-up attentions, successful people history, and lots of how to's. Or if you are interested to know how Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates' history from born till today.

They are all explained in one single image, and then follow by article. It's creative and I like it.

Interested? Just pay a visit.

Sunday, January 31, 2016

The Power of Sharing

What a tough start for 2016!

Recently I dig into YouTube and noticed China has a program called, Lecture (开讲啦). Unfortunately, it is only in mandarin. 

This program specially inviting the successful person, such as celebrity, entrepreneur, superstar, etc to a podium and share their story from the beginning till success, advice to the young people who are sitting in the audience seats. 

It is quite interesting to watch the celebrities and businessmen to share their story, both success and failure, giving good advice and motivate the young people to make decision and go for their dreams, which we normally don't see it on screen and news. More importantly, I managed to watch and learn some real life experience sharing from these wonderful people.

You can pick your favorite person and watch it here.

Copyright 2009 Ekimkee. Powered by Blogger Blogger Templates create by Deluxe Templates. WP by Masterplan