Reading Challenge

So I have completed my 2017 Goodreads Reading Challenge. I have read 30 out of 30 books by 11th July 2017.

Whaaaatt? Hooraaaaaaaay. Congratulations! What an achievement!

Umm.. nah, not really. Considering that I had 5 months of unemployment?

Anyone can do better.

On a serious note, it truly is an achievement, in a sense that I have re-acquired my reading habit now. Reading is not something in my wish-to-do-list anymore. It is a part of my life now.

I lost my reading habit since I went to university in 2008. This lasted for 6 years, until I started to pick up my reading habit again in 2014. I finally joined this Goodreads Reading Challenge in 2016 where I have succeeded to read 24 out of 24 books. It has been really a good platform to track my reading habit. And surprise, surprise, I’m still gonna do this challenge, even though I have completed this year’s challenge.

But seriously, I would have never achieved this if not for the ‘privilege’ of being an unemployed for 5 months. Sometimes life is funny, huh?




Selfless vs Selfish

As I mentioned in the previous post, I still haven’t been able to draw the boundary between being selfish and selfless. I am not sure on how to address this issue (or whether it is an issue at the first place). It would make me sound like an ungrateful whinny bitch to exaggerate this, but…let’s try…at least try not to make it sound as a first-world problem.

Everytime I went back home, I always feel guilty about the unpopular choice that I made. Moving to a new country is still acceptable, but changing career? That’s new.

I am not saying that I doubt my choice, nor do I have any regrets about it. I have passed the phase when I was having self-doubts and calling myself stupid etc. But still I haven’t been able to release myself from feeling guilty.

Probably deep down I still feel that I don’t deserve it, especially when I come back home and see how others keep doing what they do. They keep on going and do not quit like I did.

It made me think, “Who am I to deserve all this goodness?”. I am not saying that I am more fortunate than the others. I have no rights to feel or say that at all. I understand that it is a personal choice, but I still can’t see why I can choose differently, because I am just the same as the others. And it made me feel guilty.

I know I sound like a hypocrite right now. Admitting feel guilty, but enjoying my new life style at the same time… It is exactly what a hypocrite will do.

I have heard about self-love and self-care, that we should take care of ourselves first by chasing our own happiness, before we are able to give back freely and fully with love to the others. On the contrary, as a friend mentioned once, that in our Asian culture, we should put others’ need first above our own. I have failed that, for sure…

What if that to walk on our path, we have to disappoint those who are close to us?  I surely had quite a hard time to convince my family about this unpopular choice, though not that dramatic. Eventually, everything turns out fine, at least at the surface.

I hope that I don’t create a false assumption of a drama happening right now. There is no drama whatsoever. There is no one who confronts me about this during my current holiday. And yeah, that is why. The fact that no one confronts about it anymore, makes me feel uncomfortable and guilty. When they did back then, I resented them for it and became so defensive, but now when everything is at peace, I made my own drama with this guilty blah-blah thoughts..

Oh well.


I did some old books and clothes decluttering today at ‘home’ home. Yeah, including those books that I’ve never read and clothes that I’ve never worn.

I was never properly taught about personal financial management. I guess I have learned it the hard and expensive way in real-life experiences. Buying those clothes, books, other stuffs that I didn’t need only to end up unworn/unread/unused before being donated. Well, at least they still all ended up for a good cause…

After moving down under, especially after 6 weeks of backpacking last year, I have become to realize that I could actually survive with a 9-L backpack worth of daily essentials. I made a pact with myself when I moved last year, to not shop any more clothes for the next 3 years. To this date, I have survived a year without shopping. Two more years to go.

Of course, there were many times when I was tempted to shop, especially when it came to a nice dress that would really fit me well, on SALE, on a very very good deal. What could go wrong right? Nothing to lose…only a few bucks wouldn’t hurt… but then I was reminded with all my clothes in the wardrobe, that have been cut off to one-third of its original capacity like a few years back.. And you know what? Even after being cut off to one-third, I only wear one-third of those in daily basis… So, it comes down to only one-ninth of my used-to-be wardrobe a few years back, when I was still living that ‘stable’ life with a ‘secure’ job.

It took me all those years to learn the lesson of ‘only buy what you need’. It has been such a liberating act for me to be a ‘minimalist’ for this past one year. It provides me with more spaces to keep other things (tangible or intangible) that are more important in life.

Similarly, I am trying to declutter my online or social media habits. I have deleted the social media apps in my phone to unlearn my habit and dependency on social medias.

Guilty that I am, also about interacting with my friends, for it has been taking me forever to reply a single message these days…but it is just something that I need to do, even as selfish as it sounds. Yes, selfishness.. I still haven’t been able to figure out how to set the boundary between self-care and selfishness. Not yet.

Being Clumsy

Just watched this video on YouTube about being clumsy.

LOL the blueberries spilling on the kitchen floor was literally what happened to me during my first evening shift on my own.

Still having a hard time to accept and forgive this side of clumsiness in me, sometimes. But I’m getting better at it.

What I should focus on is not how to be perfect, but not to be hard on myself when things like that do happen. When I make mistakes. When I am clumsy.

Getting better?

The last day of work before holiday! 

I still missed some details at work. They’re tiny but yet can’t be ignored. I guess I am getting better at handling mistakes. Of course I still feel upset about it. But now I am trying to just forgive myself and move on, instead of dwelling too much in my drama. 

Probably because of the environment is very good and supportive. It motivates me to be better because they are all good people. I feel like I have to improve to show my gratitude and appreciation. 

There are still times when I doubt myself, “am I fit in in this kind of tough environment?” Because I am clumsy, clumsy, and basically just clumsy. Probably a slow learner too. 

But now I am trying to focus on each task as best as I could. I am trying hard not to be distracted once I make a mistake. I am trying not to make the small incident affect my next task. Like someone said to me, just move on. When the work is over, you can think again about the mistake and evaluate it. But don’t think about it during the work itself. Just go on. 

Don’t sweat the small stuff

I used to sweat the small stuff. Well I still do, but I think I am getting better at it. I am still learning to do it right.

I realized recently that somehow.. I have started to use a different approach when I was encountered a bad day. I was still upset though but I am trying not to dwell with it for as long as I used to. I think it has been a good practice. 

There were some points recently when I simply had no energy to even share what I have been through to some of my friends. Not because of I don’t trust them or I want to keep it a secret. But I just simply have no more energy and desire to talk about it. The more I talk about it, the more drained I become. 
The purpose of venting out is to let yourself feel relieved, but it is currently doing me the opposite : it draines me. So I guess it is better to just ‘Don’t sweat the small stuff’ from now on?

Anxiety and Shame

I don’t know if I really have an anxiety disorder, but yes sometimes I do over-worry a lot about things that I can’t control. As I get older, I noticed that it becomes worse. Sometimes I have fears of something will happen to my beloved ones, this and this, that and that, things that I can’t even think of when I was younger. But let’s not get into that…

Let’s start from something small.

I am always anxious before work, even for my current job that I love doing. I am okay when I am working, but the hours before work are the worse. I worry over small things that can happen.. I even dream about it during my sleep. 

I don’t like it. It costs me so much negative energy. Worse is if I am doing an evening shift, I would spend the whole day worrying and I can’t do anything productive.. If I do, my mind would be distracted after a while and there comes the anxiety again.

Some incidents happened last Monday and I was really ashamed of it. I was very ashamed of my stupid mistakes, even though they told me things like that DO happen, but I thought they must have said that just to be polite.. 

Since I was little, I am never good at handling a mistake that I make. I will immediately feel that my self-worth is ruined because I make a mistake. This is something that I am not proud of, and I really want to change it from now.

The thing is I still feel that I must feel anxious before work, because that is what I am supposed to do : worry if I will do well enough. I am afraid of not being good enough. That is probably my biggest insecurity. I am still working on it.

This is the next lesson in my life that I have to focus on. I thought I have grown up that much, but there are so much things we need to work on from the inside to be a better person. Inside out.

More blogging, less social media

Recently, I changed my Instagram privacy setting to private. I wonder if my posting habit will change if less people see it, if I can’t attract public attention by using the powerful #hashtags. I wonder if I would care more about the content that I share rather than the likes.

Ah, the likes… my guilty pleasure. I know the likes don’t matter, but…still such a guilty pleasure for me to see how many people ‘like’ my photo. It made me feel good…which was so wrong. So unhealthy. That is why I think I’d better change my posting habit in social media.

Probably it is time to make use of this blog to its maximum potential. A blog is a better platform to present more of me, my thoughts, my life, my struggle. People come here because they want to come here in the first place, not becauese they are bored, scrolling the news feed to find something new and interesting updates about the friends that they won’t really care and won’t really care for them back.

Not that I have a lot of readers in this blog, probably none especially from now on, I have decided not to update personally to some friends if I have something new. Nothing personal on them. It is just my decision to see what would I write here in this blog, if no one is guaranteed to read it, even if I open for public to read.

What would I write authentically from my heart that is public worthy (of course it is different with a private diary), without the guarantee of somebody will ever read it? What would I want to leave marks in this world even if I have to go as ‘annonymous’? (But if you are just happened to read this and you know me in person, please let me know so I can thank you personally for your time to read this) 

In a bigger picture, let’s put it this way: how many people would still care to do some good deeds if they know that it would remain unknown? A.k.a. not allowed to post in social media. I am aware that social media can be such a powerful tool too, but let’s not get into that please. I am talking about something more personal. Will you still make that surpsie birthday party if knowing that the beautiful photos would go un-shared forver? Would you still do that yoga pose in every beach that you go if you can’t post it? Would I still be keen to make good looking desserts at home if I can’t share the picture to the public?

I don’t know what is going on with me. There is no certain events that trigger this thought. Maybe it is just part of growing up? Not saying that others are not growing up or whatever, but maybe I have just changed recently as a person? I am not condemning or judging people who still share as many as they like, but maybe now for me it is just time to re-evaluate my true intention. 

And probably with less social media, I can do more blogging? Yeah, let’s make it a mid-year resolution then.