2015: Five Things to Learn as I’m Gearing up for New Odyssey

So as I was just about to start typing this post I received the news that a M4.5 earthquake has struck Taipei. Yet just three days ago, the year’s third Malaysia-linked aviation disaster (fourth in the world) just occurred when AirAsia flight QZ8501 crashed en route from Surabaya to Singapore.

And then there is the worst flood in the country’s history. Some of the states are still experiencing it at this very moment as the rest of the world is counting down to year 2015. With all the incidents that are unfolding one after another as the year is coming to an end, my mind was all “WTF!?”, but then who is to blame, seriously?

Everyone knows 2014 is a tragic year.

Life still goes on nevertheless.

Now that 2015 is just hours away. As much as I wish that the new year will be a better one, I’m actually not very  optimistic about it considering our country’s very chaotic political, social, and economic situations in the recent years.

But on a personal level, the new year will be a year of changes and challenges as I start steering into a different direction in life, doing something a little – or maybe a lot – different from what I’ve been doing for the past six years.

I’m not going to reveal exactly what I’ll be doing next. At least not yet for the time being. When the time is right I will. Anyway that’s also not the point of this post.

This post is a reflection on certain aspects of me which I think I can improve on in the new year as I slowly embark on a different journey of life. As a matter of fact I’m not perfect (though I’m a perfectionist when it comes to the things I’m passionate about). I make mistakes, have made lots of them. Occasionally I have bad temper. There are also times when I lose my patience, or when I complain like a broken record.

So I’m putting down five aspects which I think can help me become a better person. You know sometimes there are certain bad habits in us that we want to get rid of but can’t do it overnight. I think it’s necessary to constantly remind ourselves so that we could work towards fixing these habits.

1. Not to impose values upon others

Just as I hate people to impose values I don’t find suitable upon me, I think it’s only fair if I don’t do the same unto others. I may have a set of principles I hold on to. I may have a religion that tells me what is good and what not; what is true and what not.

But people too may have their own principles; they too have their own conception of truth. Or maybe they don’t even care about truth or about having any principle. So who am I exactly to dictate to them and say, “Ooi, make sure you subscribe to my truth ah!”?

2. To be less judgemental

This point is related to the first.

So when people become too self-righteous and expect others to behave and act in a certain way, the expectations that come along will likely make them judge people and things around them too quickly, which I personally hate. So, this I must avoid also!

3. To be less kaypoh

Buey paisehly I want to say that being nosy isn’t quite my nature. But the truth is that there were times when I embarrassingly found myself to be one such kaypohji who went to the extent of minding others’ businesses.

Le sigh.

Must. Change. That. Juicy stories are refreshing and tempting at times. But everyday there are people starving and dying. There are definitely way more important issues to pay attention to.

4. Voice it up or don’t complain

Trust me, I know the feeling of having to deal with people who drive you nuts and make us go like, “You so pandai then come and take up my job lah!”

Sure, they don’t understand our situation sometimes. But the epic fail is that we don’t say this straight to their face and it doesn’t solve any problem.

Being a head of department at work, it would be horrifying if my subordinates are feeling dissatisfied about certain issues but not saying it to my face. I’d rather everyone be honest and transparent than keeping everything to themselves.

But most importantly I think the best thing to do would be to stand in their shoes and empathise first before making a conclusion.

5. To give more, not just receive

2014 may have been a bad year for our nation but I’ve achieved a couple of things in the same year. In fact it’s not just 2014, the past decade has been a fruitful ride in general.

Take a look at the (sometimes crazy) little things I’ve done in 2012, 2013, and 2014 and you will get the idea. I’m not trying to be boastful over these small achievements of mine and have people go like, “Cheh, things like these you call them achievements ah? You are so pathetic lor.”

What I’m trying to say is that there are certain things I want to do as I enter a certain stage of life. So I plan them, work towards them, and have them materialised. But such achievements can’t possibly happen without friends helping me out or family members giving me the support I need. At the end of the day, I’m the one who claims credit to these achievements, not them.

Others too want to have their own achievements. I think it’s only sensible that I do my best to help them the same way some have been really selfless in rendering help to me.

Happy New Year.