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I wish you abundant happiness, health & wealth

Posts Tagged ‘Australia

Gratitude exercise: Food that makes you happy

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Since food is one of our essential needs, I ask myself why not enjoy them more and let them make me happy.

On the last Thursday of August 2013, l squeeze a South African orange that tasted so sweet. A previous orange from the same batch tasted sour. In an analogy, l hope that sour relationships in our life turn sweet, when we are patient. Being patient is an art.

On the 2nd Monday of September 2013, I had a lunch with Thai friends. A guy who is returning to his home country praised my hard work, he often saw me also working in the weekends. During the lunch, I also tried stir fried fresh bamboo shoot, they taste crunchy, I like it!

In October 2013, I meet up with a mentor Keith Ferrazi, an Italian American. His surname sounds like Ferrari, the fast driving luxurious car to me. Keith’s main message of never eat alone is like a wake-up call for me. Up until 2011, I signed myself up for a challenging project with a deadline of 2011. I was struggling and stressing, I put extra efforts, energy, sweat, time, and even tears into my project. Since my time was limited, I often chose to eat during off-peak hours (I saved time on queuing and finding a seat), but that also means that I could not find someone to eat with (at weird hours). Gradually, I have learned to be comfortable with eating alone and be happy with myself. This is not necessarily a bad thing, because we have to be independent. However, I sacrificed opportunities to develop my inter-dependent skills by eating alone. Now, it is time to form new relationships, to revitalize old relationships, and to sustain harmonious ongoing relationships.

Free food served in association with conferences / talks. Actually, there is no free lunch, someone else is paying for our food, so I can only be grateful. It often makes me think how to increase the production of healthy food to sufficiently and sustainably feed the fast-growing world population.

Simple, relatively bland homemade / home-cooked food after a day of eating strongly-flavored, mass-produced food, to detox and re-balance our body. I am not totally anti-junk food. It is ok to have the indulgence of e.g. desserts, ice cream, curry, etc, but not for every meal!

Some nights, I cook soup overnight using the slow cooker. Having a (sometimes 2!) bowl(s) of hot soup in the morning really makes me more grateful than ever, especially to Mom & Dad who bought the ingredients for us. Thank you for loving us!

In December 2013, I packed snack to work. My snack includes different kinds of fruit (including Thailand longan, Korean Jeju Mandarin, nectarines from Australia), bread, and KitKat Hazelnut! Sometimes, I got free snacks. Life is awesome.

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Written by blueroselady

February 17, 2014 at 9:08 am

Tips from various magazines

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@~@
To reduce commute time:
www.workshifting.com

Personally, commute time can be used for doing other useful stuff.
Relax (when the public transports are not too crowded).
Listen to voice notes of inspirations and ideas.
Read: study materials, news, facebook.
Plan.

@~@
According to Sally Poon (a dietician from Hong Kong Nutrition Association),
food of eating out are high in SALT, FAT & SUGAR,
which increases the risk of obesity, heart disease & hypertension.
Yes, we know all these but many times we choose to satisfy our

Minimize fried food.
Avoid preserved meat, e.g. salami.

For pasta e.g. spaghetti: red sauce (tomato-based) is healthier than white sauce.

@~@
"The more time a person spends on the job, the more conflict there is likely to be between work and family."
Do you agree with this statement?

@~@ Things that I must do:
# live my life to the fullest.
# appreciate what I have.

@~@
Short-listed things that I find interesting to do:
# Learn copywriting. Learn writing to sell a strategic idea.
# read The happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (since January 2012)
# make DIY flash cards. First picture that I found: polar bear of Churchill, Canada. Remember that the cuddly-looking polar bear (thanks to its shaggy fur) can be dangerous. My friend J was given a polar bear soft toy as the first birthday gift from his man, and his man can be cuddly yet dangerous like polar bear!
# attend a Nobel Prize banquet @ Stockholm (since March 2012).
# eat Vosges Haut-Chocolat (chocolate with unlikely flavors like curry, taleggio, and wasabi), partly because Katrina Markoff is an inspiring entrepreneur!
# FIND TIME TO DO NOTHING. BREATHE. An advice by Tim Park, the author of Teach us to Sit Still: A Sceptic’s Search for Health and Healing.
# Remove dust! Dust can cause your TV, computer, laptop to overheat and reduce its life span. When you do house chores of vacuum cleaning, empty the dust bag when it is half-full. With a fuller dust bag, the machine has to work harder and risks overheating.
# To extend the lifespan of your mobile phone, use its appropriate charger, simply because the voltage is different. Do not charge your phone overnight.
# commit to 30-day challenge of writing a book. Thank you Matt Cutts.
# refuse to let work compromise what my body needs: nutritious, regular meals, 7-8 hours of sleep, 3×10-minute exercise.
# hit the road less traveled with a backpack like Paige Chua. She went for her first solo trip to Beijing & Inner Mongolia in 2007. Interesting reflection: city dwellers seek a simple life when travel, but rural dwellers (e.g. of Inner Mongolia) aspire to move to cities (e.g. Beijing).

Quotes that I like:
# "No one shoots you if you’ve got a smile on your face." ~ Alan Wicker, travel journalist.
# "When I visit somewhere new, I always absorb it first as a human being, then photography it as my hobby and then consider if it’s interesting enough to share with other people through Twitter, Facebook or my blog." ~ Ben Southall, Winner of Best Job in the World (2009), caretaker of Hamilton Island on the Great Barrier Reef.
# "Don’t forget that frequent business travellers are often the most frequent leisure travellers." www.businesstraveller.asia
Blueroselady: The next time someone (e.g. CV) tells you and me that he is busy travelling on business trips, he is likely to include sightseeing and leisure activities too!

Written by blueroselady

January 11, 2014 at 3:59 pm

Movie: Dear Enemy (2011)

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Thanks to a good friend, I recently watched a movie about investment bankers, who are involved in a M&A of Lithium mining companies. The movie was played by Xu Jinglei and Stanley Huang. I have also watched the movie Go Lala Go! (2010), played by both of them. I love both movies, perhaps simply because they are romantic comedy film, a genre of movie that I favor.

What I love about the movie is that the plots bring the audience from HongKong to London, South Africa, Chengdu, and Australia. Yes, I love travelling (the beautiful sceneries and people)!

It seems to me that modern Chinese people regard careers such as investment banking highly.

When I was a student in UK, I sometimes attend career talks, some of them are hosted by investment banks. They only want the brightest of the brightest, and while it is prestigious to work as an investment bank, it comes with long hours and high level of stress, according to some insiders.

While a friend of mine is so passionate in becoming a quant (quantitative analyst), and keeps on asking me to practice together, I find myself value peace / tranquility and creativity much more than competitiveness and results (unlike the teens me).

Written by blueroselady

November 18, 2013 at 2:54 pm

Inspiration from Nick Vujicic

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I was changing at Bishan MRT station when I decided to have a dinner at Bishan so I did not have to fight to get into the train during peak hour.

After my dinner, I visited the Popular book store where I found a book Give Me a Hug by Nick Vujicic.

The book was meant for children, yet the messages are universal across ages. I love it so much and made a mental note that this is going to be one of the must-read books for my children.

I also love the illustrations on the book (by 芝麻羔Dreamergo),
the use of brown paper.

Listen to Nick and other panellists talking at the World Economic Forum

In every situation you are, there are people worse than yours.

What keeps you going? Faith

Be thankful for what you have.

Your values are not determined by how rich you are or your jobs or status.

Putting your happiness in temporary things (e.g. career) only creates temporary happiness.

80% of stories of pinnacles of Nick’s life are other people’s stories. Everyone has a story to share.

If I do not have a family, I can be a family for someone else.

@~@

After doing house chores at kitchen, I rewarded myself with freshly squeezed orange juice which is surprisingly sweet (It was the last one out of 5 oranges that I bought last Thursday, but the first 4 were sour).
We love pleasing surprise and I am grateful for today.

Written by blueroselady

August 20, 2013 at 4:50 pm

Computer languages are likely to be the linguistic skills that make you outstanding

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This post was post-dated. I thought of this a day after the birthday of a woman I love and care. Although she is very serious, she can be very funny. Since she does not know English, and her children are all overseas pursuing better lives, so she has to start making overseas trip to see her children, especially when they need her.

There was a funny incident that made me laugh until stomachache.

Once, in a rush upon returning from hospital upon the arrival of her first grandchild, she thought that the free sample of Tollyjoy liquid wash for bottles, was meant for baby bath, simply because she does not understand English. So, she let her grandchild to bath with liquid was for bottles! Her daughter was over exhausted from delivery to early discover it until she saw why such a bottle was placed in the bathroom.

Even the father of the baby does not know this, I am the privileged one to be shared such a story. In future, as a potential mentor / consultant to the baby, I may tell her grandchild this story when the child refuses to learn something.

In Asia, if you know English, you can secure a good job (i.e. one with higher salary than average job).

Asians in English speaking cities in Asia (e.g. Hong Kong, Singapore) enjoy higher income (though it comes with higher expenditure as well), more choices in employment.

People in India also benefit from the global companies that take advantage of geo-arbitraging.
Though these outsourced employees earn less that employees in US, yet they earn more than people in India.

Not many Asians know English well, although the number is increasing. More Asian parents in China are sending their children to English speaking countries (US, UK, Australia). These generations of Asians are well versed in their mother tongues as well as the international language — English. Some of the ambitious ones even speak the third, the forth languages. A personal encounter was the high school age Korean girl who sat next to me on a flight to Canada. She speaks : Korean, English, Chinese, Japanese.

I am so thankful that by chance and choice, I have the opportunities to learn English. I am still learning everyday through reading and writing.

In my humble prediction, since more and more Asians are mastering English, a good command of English alone will no longer differentiate a talent.

The Pareto Law applies. When less people speak English, you are a rare talent. When more people speak English, you need to have additional skills to differentiate yourself.

One need additional language skills. Instead of another language, e.g. Chinese Mandarin (I think it is important too, but the Chinese are eagerly learning English) and Spanish, one can and must focus on computer languages.

Simply put, for the 21st century,
computer languages = English for people in non-English speaking countries in the 20th century.

Oh my goodness, my command of computer languages is far from acceptable.
After my project L in the 1st half of 2013,
it is time for me to improve my computer languages.

Written by blueroselady

February 24, 2013 at 10:24 pm

Revising my notes on how to take beautiful photographs

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I love photos because photography literally means painting with light.
When we are taking photographs, we should think it as an act of our respects to beautiful scenery created by God.
Though photography is very subjective (I do like particular photographs but not others), photography enable us to connect to people across nation, geographical, and cultural boundaries.
I strive to have the curious eyes of children, the mind of philosopher.

Here are some tips:
Photography for the very beginners.
Practice!
Mini shoot.
Photo shoot session as a date (cheaper than fine dining / watching movies).
Discovery projects
Study work by others (the same goes for every field of professional pursuit, though I am not a professional, but I strive to create work of high standard). As of early 2013, I have over 6,000 photos for reference. Perhaps, I have to declutter them, to focus more on quality than quantity. Some good online places that I have used include : Flickr, Pbase, Corbis, websites of bridal studios or professional photographers, travel / photography books.

How to photograph people?
How to photograph your little ones?
I am committed to photography my little ones once every month.

How to pose for photos?
Be photogenic!
Not to forget make-up, even for gentlemen.
“The best shots reflect a relaxed simplicity."

Celebrate and take photos. I especially love to celebrate the four seasons.
Do you want to travel and take photos?
Here are interesting locations:
1. China: Beijing (warning the sky is so often polluted that I had to degrain and make the sky blue in a photo taken at the National Palace that I cherish), Yunnan, Sichuan (especially near Chengdu), Hong Kong,Taiwan.
Korea: very romantic for autumn and winter shots.
2. Malaysia : Malacca, Penang
3. Indonesia: Bali (many couples are getting married at the island of God), you can get forever summer photos here.
4. United Kingdom because I lived there. I always love the England gardens! I even love their fine porcelain mugs printed with garden flowers. Think of Alice in the Wonderland, Harry Potter, all magical things! I love England in spring and autumn.
5. France: forever ROMANTIC Paris! Imagine perfume, Lavender, Mediterranean sea of French Riviera, and beautiful delicious food.
6. Oceania : Australia (because I think I am going there more often) and New Zealand (after I finish enjoying and experiencing The Lord of the Ring as promised by my lover).

Some reflections about travel photography:
1. Always bring TRIPOD when you travel, especially on your own. Tripod can help you take photographs with slow shutter and produce magical photos that our normal eyes cannot see.
2. "When we are taking photographs, we should think that they are our love letter to our beloved ones." My love letters sent from Canada.
3. I wrote "Shangrila (Zhongdian) in Yunnan reminds me on Switzerland."
Personally, I do not like Zhongdian.
Switzerland is a better travel destination.
Friendlier people / safer environment.
Lower altitude / more oxygen.
Better experience and memory.

Although I am not considering a career in photography, I believe that my photographic skills are improving with time.
I may also earn some pocket money from my passion in beauty and photography.
If I can, so can you!

How to increase our income?

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Income = value x time x scalability

Indeed, in September 2012, I learned from an Australian mentor with numerous patents (KS) that scalability and low cost enable easy commercialization.

How much are you worth currently?
Your hourly current value = monthly income / hours worked per month

To create more value to our company and our clients, we must keep upgrading our knowledge, skills, intellectual capital.

We must constantly install new software into our mind in order to be able to create more value.

It is not one’s age, experience, or academic qualifications, but how much value one can create for his company / clients that matters and translates into different levels of income.

It is about "WHAT CAN YOU DO?"

Let us compare 2 insurance advisers.

Insurance adviser A, age 33, monthly income $3,000.
Waits for leads.
Follows up on leads.
Give adequate presentation on products / services

Closes the sale.
Never follows up with the client thereafter.
Closes monthly premium of $7,000.

Insurance adviser B, age 33, monthly income $20,000
Sets specific monthly sales target.
Actively generates leads from all source.

Creates partnership with other companies.
Ensures a minimum of 2 appointments for consultations / day.
Gives seminars on financial planning.
Writes and publishes a book on financial planning.
Does a a detailed needs and outcome analysis for potential clients.

Presents a highly beneficial and value-added plan for the client.
Helps the clients save money and identify important needs client may have overlooked (i.e. corporate insurance, estate planning, asset protection).
Follows up every 3 months to ensure client’s emotional and financial needs are met.
Sends a quarterly e-newsletter to his customers packed with tips on money management and investments.
Able to generate even more referrals from powerful services.
Helps recruit and train more sales people for the company.

Closes monthly premium of $50,000.

Now, let us compare 2 teachers.

Teacher A, age 42, monthly income $4,000
Has worked for 12 years.
Teaches the curriculum.
Gives and marks homework.
Gives tests and mark papers.

Fulfills minimum extra curricular duties.

Teacher B, age 34, monthly income $9,800
Has worked for 4 years.
Teaches the curriculum.
Able to motivate and inspire even the weakest and most unmotivated students.

Innovates / develops new curriculum / teaching methods.
Writes systems of best practices.
Trains new teachers.
Produces innovative marketing ideas to enroll more students.
Develops strong rapport with parents and provides additional family counseling.

Innovates ideas to increase department productivity, reduce expenses.
Has written 6 textbooks, assessment books that are sold locally and over the internet.
Uses accelerated teaching methods to boost grades.
Conducts seminars / workshops on weekends for parents on how to motivate their children.

Conducts seminars for students on exam skills.
Consultant to private tuition centers.

Things to increase in order to increase income:
1. leads
2. conversion rate
3. repeat business
4. average dollar purchase
5. net profit margin

In more details …

LEADS
learn how to create more effective advertisements (stronger headlines, more persuasive copy, i.e. text)
TV, radio, newspaper advertising
industry newsletter advertising
internet / email advertising
magazine advertising
outdoor advertising
flyers
promotion / sale
ask for referrals
member get member scheme
offer free gift
insert into other company’s invoice
letterbox flyers
sales teams
telemarketing / make more cold calls
buying / swapping database
seminars, events, roadshows
attractive window display / video
posters, large signage

CONVERSION RATE
define our unique selling proposition
set sales target
excellent customer service
introduce myself
survey our past customers
sell key benefits (not features) passionately
high quality in store posters / brochures
in-store sales scripts
be a consultant / problem solver
give a money back guarantee
benefits, testimonials list
give free bonuses that increase value
great prospects and use their name
learn closing techniques
ask for the sale more than once
personal grooming, high dress standards
video in store displays
leave price to last
study and prepare for objections
specialized knowledge about our products and industry
focus on client’s needs and emphasize benefits
convenient payment scheme (credit cards, nets)
offer installment schemes with 0 interest
allow mail order / home delivery
address concerns / possible objections upfront
sell on value not price
use NLP to build strong rapport with clients
follow up with prospects regularly
improve our presentation skills

REPEAT BUSINESS
direct mail offers of the months
keep in touch every 3 months
inform clients of our entire range of services
target likely repeat customers
send special occassion cards
make customers feel special (super experience)
build a close relationship / friendship
create a loyalty program
exceed customers expectations
discount voucher off the next purchase

AVERAGE DOLLAR PURCHASE
focus on a higher income target market
use a shopping list
sell add-ons/up sizes
make sure our client knows our full range of services
suggest most expensive first
create value packages / bundle several products in a package
buy 3 get 1 free deals
ask people to buy some more
increase prices by 10%
arrange easy finance and payment
free gift / lucky draw with $xx purchase
ask customers to buy more (e.g. McDonalds, do you want to have a combo meal? do you want to upsize? do you want to have a dessert? do you want toy?)
up sell
cross sell
do a complete needs-analysis to find out how we can add even more value to customers

NET PROFIT MARGINS
increase prices
sell on value / service than price / discounts
set monthly budget targets
track costs weekly and aim to reduce by 10%
stop running ads that do not work
sell more higher margin items / sell higher margin products 1st
source for cheaper suppliers which are just as good
bargain hard with existing suppliers
increase working efficiency

Written by blueroselady

September 24, 2012 at 3:37 pm