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Posts Tagged ‘courage

A life lesson from a fallen fruit cart: resilience

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The inspiration below is adapted from the story shared by Subroto Bagchi, a co-founder & CEO of MindTree Consulting.

Imagine a busy road junction in a developing country (e.g. China, India, Indonesia) during the peak hour.
The smoke from vehicles.
The burning hot sun.
The dust that hurts eyes.
Everyone is rushing and rushing.
But it has become worse on a particular day.
A fruit seller’s cart has overturned.

His fruits are everywhere on the street floor.
The rushing vehicles are crushing his fruits.
His business for today is over.

Everyday, he woke up at 4 am before dawn or sunrise,
to buy his commodity from the wholesale market.
Then, he walked pushing his cart over a long distance.
Commodity like fruit is easily perishable,
he must sell them by the day.
Sometimes, he has not been successful because of bad weather.
Sometimes, he consumes the left-overs.
Sometimes, he just gives them away.
When unfortunate things like today happen,
he losses his capital,
and has to borrow more money from moneylender – who normally charges neck-choking interests.

Reading his story is like a wake-up call for my friend S who forward it to me.
S has a comfortable job, with stable salary, bonuses, and health insurance.
However, she often finds herself worrying about the future.
Her progress has been slow mainly because of her maternity leave and feeling of inadequate.
I asked S what the worst that can happen?
Her job contract will not be renewed.
Then, I asked S if this means that she can explore possible endeavors that she always dreams of but was too afraid to explore.

Unlike the fruit cart seller who has no financial safety net,
S still has some savings that can last her for at least half a year,
a supportive spouse.
What S needs more is resilience that she can learn from the entrepreneurial fruit cart seller to deal with life.

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Written by blueroselady

October 29, 2013 at 4:01 pm

Tips on how to make a small talk from Keith Ferrazi

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I came to know Keith through Michael, and my encounter with Keith, an Italian American somehow reminded me on an experience when an Italian teacher of mine unexpectedly saw me in a professional conference in US, was so happy and rushed to kiss my cheek. Well, as an Asian, I was not used to such a very warm of greeting, but I do appreciate his warmth and caring attitude.

My Italian teacher is a famous professor in his field of expertise, and he remembers me because I am one of his weaker students. I asked him more questions, so like it or not, he ended up remembering me (at least my face). But I guess I have a good attribute too though I am not among his smartest students, it is never give up.

I am grateful to Keith for sharing a lot of useful advice. Herein, I share tips that I learned from Keith Ferrazi on how to make a small talk. They are particularly useful to me because I want to expand my network of friends and acquaintance for my new endeavor next year.

"Friendship si created out of the quality spent between people, not the quantity."

How to make small talks?
1. First, give a person a hearty smile. It says "I’m approachable"
2. Start a conversation, keep it going, create a bond. Be proactive (as Stephen Covey advices).
3. Relax. Unfold your arms.
4. Be yourself. Your uniqueness is your power.
5. Maintain a good balance of eye contact. Unblinking stare 100% of time = leering (scary!). Eye contact less than 70% of time = disinterested and rude.
6. Nod your head and lean in (without invading duifang space).
7. Be sincere, without pride nor insecurity. Do not be an eye darter.
8. Share your passion (e.g. food, cooking, writing, reading stories for children), but do not preach it.
9. Vulnerability is one of the most under-appreciated assets in business today.
10. Adjust your Johari window.
11. Learn to listen.
12. If all else fails, "You’re wonderful. Tell me more."

See also
email "Keith Ferrazi"

Written by blueroselady

October 28, 2013 at 6:49 am

DO what you LOVE, LOVE what you DO

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Do what you love and love what you do sound simple, but appear complex in practice.

How many of us do what we love for most time of our lives?
How many of us love what we do for most of our doings?
For many people across different ages and roles of life, here are possibilities:
Dreams change.
Goals change.
Plans Change.

Do you love a doing because you are good at the doing?
Would you still love the doing if you are not (yet) good at the doing)?
Would you still love the doing if you are not (yet) good at the doing (even after 10,000 hours of practice)?

A quote by Steve Jobs shared by Jeff Moore:
"The only way to do great work is to love what you do.
If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking.
Don’t settle.
As with all matters of the heart,
you’ll know when you find it."

When I was in high school,
I love (or perhaps prefer) science subjects because my linguistic skills are limited (reason #1).
Apparently and consequently, I did better in maths, chemistry, biology, physics than in language subjects. People love doing things whereby we have a sense of mastery, do you feel so as well?

My native Chinese-speaking classmates who have learned writing and reading since early age, are at ease in the Chinese class.
My Eurasian classmates who have a native speaking father / mother, or those who have English-educated parents, seem to write English so fluently.
They had read thick novels / non-fiction books and easily won the essay writing and elocution competitions.
For me,
to write an essay in English or Chinese,
I had to start from simple structures.
When I have an exam topic of essay to write,
I would quickly jot down some ideas in point form and elaborated on them later as my writing progressed.
Normally, I would write explanatory or argumentative essays, and very rarely narrative essays, simply because of my limited vocabularies.

Reason #2
There are high certainty in science subject exams.
1+1=2. If the answers are right now, they will be right tomorrow.
We love things that we do well.

But in real life (including the real scientific fields as my scientist acquaintances point out),
the rules of game are uncertain.
The rules are not constant; change is the rule of the rules.
That’s why life is the only known example of infinite game is life, according to James P. Carse.
On contrary, examples of finite games are debates, sports, schools, receiving a degree from an educational institution, belonging to a society, or engaging in war.

The surprise in infinite game is the triumph of the future over the past.
So, when you are uncertain about what to do next, an easy step is to
always choose infinite games.

Winning should not be the final goal because after winning, the game stops.
Life is a game that is meant to be continuously played.
Aunt Florence shared some profound advice on how to play the game of life, you may want (and I need) to revise and remember them,
as resilient shortcuts in the moments of negative feelings and events.

Although I honestly feel that my writing is still not up to standard (set through social comparisons with people of similar professional credentials to mine and authors whom I admire),
I will continue writing.
I think this is an example of "DO what you LOVE".

Sometimes we may have to do things that we are not interested, so it is hard to love what we do.
However, the good news are interests are malleable,
they are formed through our past experiences (including education),
so we can change them through learning and unlearning.
Revealingly, you can re-program your minds and interests through conscious efforts,
this attempt will also beneficial to discard some preferences that we would not want to have if we think carefully about them but others manage to incept on us — think of the 2010 science fiction film entitled Inception.

For example, I know a number of people who have focused greatly on their careers,
hate doing house chores or parenting tasks,
but I believe that if they want to,
with right conscious efforts to shift their interests,
they can love what they do.

How to continue love what you do (even if you feel tired / bored / disappointed / frustrated) ?
My friend Tracy suggests using positive feedback loop.
You can establish positive feedback loop when the rewards / pleasure of your doing outweigh the sacrifices / pain.

To DO what you LOVE, you need willpower and courage.
To LOVE what you DO, you need positive feedback and inner security.

Inner security that I means here is not worrying so much about achieving certain levels of success.

More real-world examples:
# Joanna: becoming a mother at age 48
# My friend Leo highlights that people rule out the possibility of great change, because it appears unrealistic.

Finally,
"Do what you love, love what you do & deliver more than you promise!" ~ Harvey Mackay

Written by blueroselady

September 25, 2013 at 4:56 am

What are the masculine and feminine qualities to adopt for success?

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In the summer 2005, I went to pay a tribute to the Statue of Liberty for what she symbolizes: immense vitality, strength, and beauty. Do you notice that her face shows her inner masculine strength and determination?

In the summer 2004, I did not manage to see the Michelangelo’s statue of David in Florence, but I believe that one day in the future I will be able to go around Italy with a lover.
David represents the highest perfection of man. Though he has muscled body, he also possesses sensitivity.

Based on the responses of the all-women participants in CNC’s seminar, here are what many intelligent and open-minded women think of as

MEN’S NEGATIVE QUALITIES
arrogant
demanding
egotistical
immature
insensitive
lazy
chauvinistic
patronizing
self-centered
ungrateful

WOMEN’S NEGATIVE QUALITIES
bossy
emotional
envious
gossipy
indecisive
insecure
moody
perfectionist
petty
timid

MEN’S POSITIVE QUALITIES
adventurous
analytical
bold / confident / courageous / risk-taker / audacious
focused
generous
in control
logical
open-minded
straightforward
strong

WOMEN’S POSITIVE QUALITIES
adaptable
committed
creative
empathetic
independent
intuitive
passionate
practical
resilient / bend but not break
sensitive

Well, if we look carefully in real world, certain women have many masculine qualities, and vice versa.

Sun Tzu teaches: Whether you should be more masculine or feminine depends on the situation / circumstances / environment / people you face. Do not be locked into a style or another. Be flexible.

Our fashion can help.
If you feel that you are too harsh / aggressive, wear a pale scarf or sexy lingerie beneath your power suit.
If you feel that you are too passive, wear a dark banker’s suit.

Written by blueroselady

October 8, 2012 at 1:29 am

How to overcome fear?

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Here are my answers to self-analysis questions given by Napoleon Hill to help me to overcome fear. I pray that I make progress to be less fearful and more courageous.

I love the fact that:

  1. I have many dreams.
  2. I am grateful for what I have now.
  3. I am gaining self-confidence as I grow older.

Therefore, I always see my life as hopeful.

I take full responsibility for my life.

I do not complain often.

I do not find fault with other people at the slightest provocation.

I am not sarcastic and offensive in my conversation.

People whom I am grateful to:

  1. MR for his talents and dreams.
  2. SM for her love, practicality, resourcefulness.
  3. AM for his kindness and genius.
  4. MT for her love, greater purpose. I put her photo at a place I can see daily at home.

My strategies:

  1. Every morning and every night, I make use of auto-suggestion to make my mind positive.
  2. I constantly and consciously garner spiritual forces to keep my mind free from all forms of fear.
  3. To overcome the fear of poverty, I believe that as an educated and resourceful person, I will have no problem meeting my basic needs.
  4. To overcome the fear of criticism, I am grateful for constructive criticism. I am aware of the motives of criticism (jealousy, justification attempt by others).
  5. To overcome the fear of illness, I love myself.
  6. To minimize the feeling of self-pity, I think of my greater purpose.
  7. I am trying my best to shift my thinking towards success.
  8. Have you learned how to drown my problems by being too busy to be annoyed by them? Yes, in 1999, 2001, 2005-2006.
  9. I befriend, learn from and share with positive people.
  10. I try my best to avoid / minimize contact / shield from negative people.
  11. I am not easily influenced by others against my judgments. I make my own decision.
  12. Though I am compassionate by nature, I must be aware that it is not my duty to share other people’s worries.

Things to improve:

  1. I have to be more discipline for my definite major purpose.
  2. I suffer sometimes from indigestion. Solution: never let my stomach empty. Eat more often in smaller portions.
  3. I sometimes envious of those who excel me.
  4. My 3 most damaging weaknesses: bad temper, perfectionism, unforgiving.

Thank you: Think and Grow Rich

Written by blueroselady

May 26, 2012 at 8:35 am

Why am I taking risks?

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1. Risk taking leads to wealth and strong GDP growth / capita.
2. Risk = measurable uncertainty (economist Frank Knight).
3. I grew up in a risky environment. We survived through countless calculated risk-taking.

Things to be aware of:
1. some regulatory environment can leave little room for entrepreneurial risk-taking.
2. The more social security provides a safety net, the less one has o think about the future. Blueroselady, please do not give too much security to your progenies!
3. rich people will use $ to buy time; poor people will use time to save $.
4. Andrew Carnegie: 80% of all millionaires made it through real estates.
5. When you get promoted, do your responsibilities get heavier? YES. Does your salary double?

Written by blueroselady

May 25, 2012 at 8:35 am

How to skydive and paraglide?

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I am keen to share what I have done with my instructors.

Can I wear glasses? If you wear glasses, it is better to wear contacts. Then you will wear goggles. If you wear glasses, the pressure given by the googles may be unbearable. My goggle was tight and it prevents wind and air from brushing my eyes harshly.

jumping altitude (between 9,500 feet and 17,500 feet) between 2.9 km and 5.3 km

How does free fall feel? accelerate to 120 mph = 193 km per hour = 54 m/s
The earth’s gravity is 9.81 m/(s^2)

ignoring air resistance, an object falling freely near the Earth’s surface increases its velocity by 9.81 m/s for each second of its descent.
An object starting from rest will attain a velocity of 9.81 m/s after one second, 19.6 m/s after two seconds, and so on, adding 9.81 m/s to each resulting velocity.
But why we can free fall up to 60 sec? Is this due to air resistance?
Due to the earth’s gravity, it explains why as you free fall longer, you will feel that you are free falling faster and faster.

Newton’s law of universal gravitation simplifies to F = mg
F= ma

Experts out there, please kindly correct me if what I wrote have errors.

paragliding is very weather dependent, so your training might take 4 days, 4 months or even longer.

When starting your training, it is a good idea to write a detailed account of every flight in a log book.

You should record the details of the flight; location, duration, height gained, weather conditions, wind strength etc, but more importantly you should record anything unusual/unexpected or new.

Review your flights with your instructor and discuss technique.

Practice on the ground.

Wear a helmet whenever you are clipped in to your harness.

Always wear strong sturdy boots with good ankle support – the lighter the boots, the better.

Don’t be tempted to buy that great paraglider on e-bay. Your life will depend on your paraglider, so ask your instructor what they recommend before you invest in your first purchase.

When you’ve got your license, don’t just buy the first rig you see. Rent, borrow and try as many different types as you can, before you spend your hard-earned money.

Never stop learning. Getting your A-license only means you can jump out, freefall, open a parachute, and land it safely. This is where the real learning starts!

Skydiving is NOT about taking risks; it’s about enjoying a different environment. If you’re just looking for kicks, then you’ll find skydiving not all that fulfilling after only a couple of jumps.

Winglish: “You’ve got to use more than just your eyes, that’s the key. Communication of Winglish only happens through the brakes and risers. You’ll never hear it until you relax completely, all over, and feel the tension in your brake lines and risers. It’s a physical thing, so listen to Winglish through your body.”

“One of the greatest hazards paraglider pilots face is getting blown behind a ridge or mountain.Once you get into a blow-back situation, the penalties include power lines, extreme rotor turbulence, tree landings, and possible death or injuries from any of these.”

Avoiding launching on windier days is a good practice, but blow-backs occur from other situations and factors.

Are there any venturis to be aware of?
Are there locations near the site where the wind tends to be stronger?
What is the day’s forecast and what are the locals saying about the day?

If you are new to a site, get a full introduction from the locals.

Check the Wind Speeds with an anemometer before you fly.

Have a speed system ready on your glider. This means connected, adjusted, and ready for use.

Know that the winds can be dramatically stronger and dangerous as you ascend at any flying site.

Continuously monitor the wind speeds as you fly. Do this via your crab angle and lateral ground speed along the ridge.

Avoid flying higher on windy days.

If you do fly higher in strong winds, fly well upwind of the cliffs as you ascend and traverse the cliff or ridge.

Know how and when to penetrate out in front and how to descend to lower winds.

Penetrate and get down as soon as you notice that the wind is getting strong. When you get on your speed bar, your purpose should be getting down, not staying up in the strong winds.

Avoid the area above and behind the top of the cliff at all times.

What is the minimum height for a parachute to be deployed?
For skydiving, the requirement set by the United States Parachute Association says the main parachute for a D-License holder is 610 m (2000 feet) above the ground. this give time to fix any malfunctions. If you are less experience 760 m (2500 feet). The reserve parachute can open in less than 400 feet. The reserve absolute minimum would be around 214 m (700 feet) to land without injury.

Ref:
wikihow
http://www.uspa.org = the regulating body for U.S. skydivers.
Canada : The Canadian Sport Parachuting Association
UK : The British Parachute Association
Australia : The Australian Parachute Federation
http://www.paragliding-tales-and-reviews.com/paraglide-instruction.html
http://www.paragliding-tales-and-reviews.com/winglish.html
http://www.paragliding-tales-and-reviews.com/avoiding-blowback.html
http://www.fabulousrocketeers.com/Photo_See_Ya.htm

Written by blueroselady

July 28, 2011 at 3:58 pm