Tuesday, December 19, 2017

30 things that I realised in 2017

1.You don’t know how tired you can get until you are a parent. It gives me a new perspective and now see my own parents in a different light.

2.If you don’t want to complain about work, have a kid. You will also see work in a different light because you can finally be ‘in-control’ of your life. You might even volunteer for OT.

3.Babies are manipulative little creatures. They flash a smile, and you suddenly forgot you haven’t slept well for the past year, clearing their shit and feeding them in the wee hours of the day, and still want to continue doing so.

4.People can say what they want, but it’s the doing that differentiates them from the rest of those dreamers. Follow what they do, not what they say.

5.Haven’t been reading much this year, but I’m surprised how much clarity it gives to my mind. I’ve been reading too much for the past few years!

6.If you eat more carbs, you will want to eat more carbs to fill you. Vice versa.

7.The fastest way to see if you are too idealistic is to be in the thick of things. Your idealism will get destroyed quickly by the practicalities of life.

8.If life is a RPG (role playing game) where I can get to allocate points to stats, I’ll maximise charisma. I think that’s what my boy did.

9.My boy is well on track to save 100k by age 20. He has 18k in his possessions now, inclusive of a big fat contribution from the govt. Boasting rights for him in the future.

10.Learning the different roads and how to drive from one place to another is like learning a language. If your family do not have a car when you are a child, you can learn to drive in your adulthood, but you will never be able to know how to go from A to B without a GPS.

11.I spent nearly 4 months preparing milk from formula the wrong way, until I had a chance encounter seeing how my wife did the proper way. I suck. Or maybe the lesson here is that there are many ways to succeed.

12.Being a old father, I wondered if I will have more energy to catch up with my son if I had him when I’m much younger. The conclusion is that I will have more energy, but I will be less self-assured, more jittery, will do more comparison with peers and have less priority to my kid than now. I think it’s a good trade off.

13.Having a kid doesn’t cement the relationship between couples. It amplifies it. If you have a good relationship with your spouse, you’re going to have an even better one after having a kid. If it’s weak to begin with, it’ll go even weaker.

14.I think I’m a patient person. Having a kid will test that limit to the max.

15.I see less and less grandparents having the skillset to take care of their grandkids. It might not even be the skillsets, but also the inclination to want to do so. Grandparents these days prefer to travel and/or work. I wonder if I’ll be a good nurturing grandfather too.

16.I am paying my tv watching debt with interest now, catching up years of not watching. From less than 3 hours a year of tv, to about 3 hours a day now. You can be so tired you just want to vegetate in front of the tv to celebrate the official ending of the day when my baby finally fall asleep.

17.It’s hard to isolate my kid from viewing the screen. They are digital natives, and it will be wrong to stop them from using it. I guess the key here is self-control and how to have the discipline to regulate desires internally. Work in progress.

18.I really hate students who lie. Usually they will fire me, or I will fire them. I dislike spending half my time trying to decipher whether what they say is real or not, rather than spending the time tutoring them.

19.There’s a huge stereotype that fathers can’t be caretakers. It rivals the one question that I keep getting asked – does being a tutor mean that I don’t have to pay tax? But can I really blame them? From my work, 99% of the time, fathers are absent. Out of 14 years of my tutoring work, I can only recall less than 5 instances where the dad is involved.

20.The returns of the stock market does not contribute much to my networth right now. I have to keep reminding myself that when I think I’m spending far too much energy and time on it. The focus right now must be on my active income and career.

21.I can be stingy on myself, but generally I don’t think I am on others. If I am, let me know lol

22.2017 is officially the year of the cryptocurrency. People left right and centre are just talking about it all the time.

23.Being a self-employed working at home rocks! The benefits of it is slowly materialising. I see my family all the time and don’t have to ‘go out’ to work.

24.I’ve started writing a diary entry every day for the past 8 months. I realised when I’m tired, I talk about events without emotions, basically in chronological order. When I’m not so tired, I talk more about my feelings and other people’s feelings. It could be an insight to my personality.

25.What’s the difference between love and like? If you like a flower, you will pluck it off the ground and keep it. If you love a flower, you will water it everyday and keep it healthy.

26.Having a baby allowed me to see the evolution of needs. As we grow, the needs of the baby increases and gets more complex. That’s the winding up part. I think at a certain point in life, we should do a winding down process too, where we scale down our needs and simplify things.

27.I’m at the age where I don’t get invited to wedding or even baby showers anymore. Morbidly, I’m waiting for notification to attend funeral wakes and such. It’s interesting to observe such trends among my age group peers. Is it all unhappiness down the road from now?

28.As I get older, I’m getting a lot more frugal on my time. Negative influences are generally out of my life and I actively censor and avoid, especially when I can do nothing to change them. Positive influences I’ll actively seek them out. I cannot stand being a driftwood floating in the open sea, drifting aimlessly in any direction.

29.2017 is the year where my relationship with my mum had never been stronger. It’s all possible because she comes over to help me out with the baby almost everyday. From her love and care of my son, I think back to the days when she took care of me in the same loving and caring ways too. It had come full circle.

30.Don’t let me avoid challenges. Give me the strength to overcome them and the courage to face future challenges.


Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Point 10 jumps right at me ;)

Wow! That's profound! Wow!

Sillyinvestor said...

Seems like you are much enlightened!! Lol

I am your opposite, I am reading more, but I never finish reading a book. I usually go right into the middle.
If it captivates me then I continue.

I totally understand how work can feel like a “lifeline” at times. Thank you. I am grumbling about work, I recall when I am caregiver for my mum, can’t Wait to go to work even if I slept less than 3 hours. Why am I complaining.

I just realise 1 thing from my trip, the more u seek enjoyment, the more elusive it become, as one become more greedy

What a long list, let me try to memorize your 30 by applying the journey method that I picke dup

la papillion said...


Haha, that's the feedback I get too :) It's still work in progress and it's a theory of mine. It started when my wife 'scolded' me on why I have to drive with GPS on while she don't. Well, it's hard learning another language when I'm older, that's my ans :) haha

la papillion said...

Hi SI,

I really really try to finish a book, if not I feel unfulfilled, haha!

What journey method? share leh!

Sillyinvestor said...

In short, it is tagging what u want to remember into a journey u are familiar.

E.g. I memorize the 心经,by tagging the phrases into various points from
My workstation to the stairs to the hall to the pond etc

And various checkpoints of the journey, turn what u want to remember into images and imagine storyline to happen with that image u can think and the journey check points. The fast few image associate with that idea that appear in your head is usually the better and the more absurd the better. The points u want to remember can be transform into both sound and image to work better

Unintelligent Nerd said...

Hi LP,

Yes! Yes! Yes! For point 28.

As for point 27, you never know. Maybe one day you receive a wedding invite from Mr and Mrs SMOL ;)

simplefolk said...

Point 5 reading ... i tried to target 1 book / month and yet i failed :(
in the end it doesn't really matter. i switched to learning foreign language instead ... which i find more interesting & useful

Point 10 driving ... it's a (bad) habit much like manual/auto car. now i don't feel confident driving manual car :( try avoid using GPS on non-urgent days, am sure you will improve gradually.

Point 28 ... really good habit & interesting when you read back few years later. but due my poor writing skills, i mostly jotted bullet points of my thoughts :P

Zach @ Four Pillar Freedom said...

I also do #24 - daily journaling. I find that it helps me organize my thoughts, but more than anything it's just fun to look back on past journal entries from several months back.

Great list :)

la papillion said...

Hi temperament,

Definitely have to take care of her. Okay, I agree with you, so it's 3/4 of a circle haha!

la papillion said...

Hi SI,

Ah, I see..heard of that before :)

I haven't memorised things for a long while, haha! These days, if I do want to memorise things, I do it so often until it sticks. Works for me so far haha

la papillion said...

Hi UN,

If I ever do, he'll receive a big fat angbao from me :) I'll be very happy for him haha

la papillion said...

Hi temperament,

What to do? I'm an old soul haha

la papillion said...

Hi simplefolk,

Thanks for sharing :) I think point 28 is one of the most impt thing that i did in 2017. It should give me a lot of things to think about when I look back. Instead of a hazy past, I will see some incidents that solidifies the day or the event. I'm doing all that to slow down the flow of time. Time really flies these days.

la papillion said...

Hi Zach,

Hey hey, nice of you to drop by :)

I totally agree. My journalling app sometimes gives me random flashback, meaning that they will let me read a random post I made in the past. It's really very interesting. What I learnt from just a few months of doing is this: whatever problems you think are huge right now, it's not going to matter a week, a month, a year later. It's really insignificant in the bigger scheme of things.

Jes said...

Hi Thomas,

I am curious, how did you prepare the formula milk wrongly? I never knew there is a right way, maybe mine is wrong too haha!

I agree with you on most things except this - Babies/kids are not really 'manipulative', they are instinctive! They act entirely based on how we will react... The key is to outsmart, distract and convince them :P

la papillion said...

Hi Jes,

I don't know how to say it but I'll try my best to describe. It's the thing with the scoop spoon. I scooped up the powder and agar agar trying to level it by shaking, and had been doing that for months. I didn't know you're supposed to scrap the scoop spoon along the sides of the milk powder can to level it. When I realised it, I was so surprised that both my mum and wife had been doing that since forever. Nobody told me about it :(

Haha, I agree on the distract part :) I've been doing so low level magic trick with my kid. It's so lame that any adults can see right through, but for a kid to see things disappear and appear before their very eyes, it's a very useful way to distract them. I might be a pro magician as my baby grows smarter lol

Jes said...

Hi LP,

My whole family is not doing it in the 'correct' way either! We always agar agar, and never bother to be precise. So you are all right, haha! I don't think you need to be so exact because it's a scoop!

I am sure you will also master a lot of baby songs and other dance moves too :P

la papillion said...

Hi Jes,

Wah, I'm glad to hear of it!

And yes, I've listened to all these songs, keep repeating for almost a year already!

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