Saturday 28 May 2016

Financial Security, Financial Independence, Financial Freedom?

I got give chance.

Waited and waited.

Since no one wants to poke it, I'll take the bait!

Different words have been thrown around carelessly. What the fish is Financial Freedom compared to Financial Independence and Financial Security?

Let's play a Sesame Street game! See if you can match the above 3 definitions with the below scenarios:

Scenario A

You are the instructor of elite military forces like Commandos or Guardsman, how do you motivate your troops? Remind them they are the best of the best!

You are training Olympian athletes, and you never fail to drill into your sportsmen nobody remembers who came in second...

Scenario B

Your students are studying in a neighbourhood school, and it won't be any stretch in imagination to know they won't be moving on to Ivy League Universities anytime soon...

This is how my secondary Geography teacher cheered me on, "Jared, others spend 10 minutes study they understand; you spend 7 hours never mind. Once you understand, there's no difference!"

This is where you stress "My Pace".

Its all about finishing the Marathon. Never mind if you come in later than the "official" 6 hours cut-off time.

Scenario C

"Oh little Timmy you're so cute! Now, don't over exert yourself. Give it a rest."

"Don't do it! You'll fall and hurt yourself."

There is an overflow of love and concern - so much so that we forget we could be condescending towards or patronizing the same person whom we are desperately trying not to hurt...

You, you, and you - go to that stream. You, you, and you - I know for sure you are monolingual, don't exert yourself. It's for your own good.

Self discovery

It requires wisdom to discover who you are; and making your own decision on which path to take.

To let others influence or tell you what to do... Well, you know the story of The man, his son, and the mule... 

Now you know why I'm not a fan of Warren Buffett.

It's like me getting my 10 bagger from trading, and when you seek my advice, I tell you to do Passive Indexing instead. How's that for see you no up?

That's not how I work as an ex snake-oil, coaching facilitator, and oh so charming guy with some flower in his hair...

I'll just encourage you to discover yourself and try all vehicles; see which ones fit you the best!

You have your own karma; I have mine.

I can't do the walking for you.


Thursday 26 May 2016

Options are not Plans!

But first, a special shout out to LP and Rolf. It's their cyber conversion that sparked this post.

See? That's why its better to mix with people smarter than me!

Living in the future

Plans are to help us acquire, achieve a goal, or reach a destination we are currently not already there yet.

Which means we cannot rely on our plans entirely as there's a question mark whether we can achieve the goal that we seek.

Unless of course you are one of those who can achieve every single goals and plans you set for yourself. 

Don't be smug. We are thinking you have probably set the bar pretty low, so low that a toddler can even walk over...

Here and now

Options on the other hand are alternatives what we can make use of immediately.

No waiting for X amount in Y year bullshit.

What we only need is something most people find it hard to do - make a decision!

Hence when presented with options, what do most people do?


We make plans!?

Anything just to buy us more time. Anything to avoid making a decision.

This is a cultural trait. Something that we pick up as we were growing up. (Hey! Don't look at me, look at your parents) 

Got expiry date

Options do expire (Eh? Just like the financial instrument).

How many of us got a job offer to work overseas, but we let the opportunity pass us by through our inaction?

How about the one that got away? She was ready; but we were so distracted by our grand career or financial plans we've set out for ourselves, when we finally achieved our goals and turned around, she has gone...  

When we listen to those on their death beds, what's their regrets? It's what they have or have not done right? When was the last time you heard people on death beds regretting not making more plans or setting more goals for themselves?

Less planning; more decision making

(It's borrowed with pride from CW's "less analysing; more investing" - I merely sang my own cover version instead of singing it the karaoke way)

Monday 23 May 2016

Deflation? Zun bo?

18 straight month of negative inflation.

Aiyoh. Deflation say deflation. What negative inflation?

Reminds me of the joke I used to play on customers when I was selling sofas at IMM.

"Yes Sir! Its made of 100% genuine synthetic leather."

It will take a while before some customers wise up to the joke! It's PVC lah! LOL!


I recently renewed my fibre broadband at lower prices.

The new notebook I bought November last year was cheaper than my previous notebook; yet more powerful.

Got myself a Xiaomi and ditched my hand-me-down iPhone first generation. Not expensive for a smartphone. It cost the same as what I paid for my Nokia dumb phone 10 years ago!?

Airfares cheaper.

Idiot Sing dollar also cheaper too.

Utilities bill cheaper.

STI ETF is "cheaper" than 18 months ago.

Property prices and rents not exactly going up is it? Slow downward spiral by thousand cuts...

Mom's medical bills for her hospital appointments every 6 month have come down by a huge amount - thank you SG Pioneer Generation Card!


Is it just me or do you find hawker food and/or eating out at restaurants cost more?

Supermarket grocery prices have gone up.

My weekend job got pay increase. Thank goodness for inflation here! I not complaining.

Bus and MRT reasonable and got fare reductions last year; taxi fares no deflation despite new competition from Uber and Grab?

Banks finally got increase the interest rates for savings; although instead of giving you outright, makes you jump through hoops...  Maybe I've become too weather-beaten or something... When people treat us like monkeys, the last I would do is to bite the carrot.


From my personal experience, for the last 18 months, I did experience inflation for food and grocery prices.

But for big ticket consumer items and most investment asset classes, there's deflation.

So, if you see inflation, what would you be doing?

How about deflation? Should we accumulate more cash?

Thursday 19 May 2016

10 Tips to RUIN Your Life

This guy is hilarious!

How can he do it with a straight face?

Tuesday 17 May 2016





Friday 13 May 2016

I'm actually a slim woman inside

I normally don't do this, but I've been known to steal with pride...

Just thought its a good counterbalance to my previous post.

Life is funny this way.

Sometimes we have to climb the mountain to discover ourselves.

Sometimes we don't.

Wednesday 11 May 2016

Only You Can Change Yourself

Thai TV commercials are super fun to watch!

Something for those who are climbing up the mountain. 

Thursday 5 May 2016

Go away! Doors slammed in my face in our community of bloggers.

Let me share with you some of my experiences visiting other people's blogs:

1.  Some are just as chatty like me. We don't post comments, we have a conversation ;)

2.  Some turn off the comments in their blogs. These bloggers are not interested to have a discussion. It's "wah kali gong" or I tell you so!

3.  Then there are those who cannot "tahan" my poking comments. So they basically ignore me while they only reply to their "ya lor ya lor" readers. These bloggers are telling me to talk to the "hand". LOL!

4.  Then there are bloggers that restrict access to their blogs to a limited number of "approved" readers. They post comments in my blog, but when I click their nick back to their blogs - access denied. Hey!


So you see, for every reader that wants to engage with me, there could be 99 others who are totally turned off my me.

This is the same if you want to ask a girl out on dates. Unless you look like Andy Lau, you'll probably go through 99 rejections before hubba, hubba! Wink, wink!
How to find a 10 bagger? You'll more likely discover 99 stocks that aren't first!

A bit of rejections, a dash of doors slammed in our face, and a sprinkle of people spitting on what we write - that's par for the course for blogging.

If you can't stand the heat, don't stay in the kitchen.

By the way, some of the most interesting new friends I've met in blogosphere are those I have the most "vigorous" conversations with. Chinese call it "No fight; no know you".

Please hor! I not telling you to go round arguing with everyone you meet. Don't be an idiot!

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