Posts

Showing posts from October, 2016

How to Learn Anything

Image
I was preparing for the second round of managerial training tomorrow when I found this interesting Ted Talk: The First 20 Hours, How to Learn Anything by Joshua Kaufman . pearlie 

Suffer and be comforted as one in Christ

Image
  Pastor said something in church today that made me think. He was announcing and reporting on a wake service held for rather new member of the church and was commending the members of the church who turned up at the service.  He commented that the situation is so different between churches in smaller towns like Batu Pahat compared to city churches in Kuala Lumpur. Whenever, a member of a small town church passes away, the whole church comes to pay their respect and to comfort the family members. But for a city church, few would make the effort.  I never thought of it from that perspective before. I usually don't go unless I am close to the members of the family because if I am not known to them, I feel I won't be of much of a support. But what the pastor said is true. We are all one body in the Lord and the local church is the body of the faith community in Christ. Therefore, when one suffers, all suffer and when one rejoices, all rejoice.  When my father-in-law passed away se

Cognitive Bias: Recency Effect

Image
  I have read and noticed recently some common cognitively biases that people around me have made that I would like to find out more. This is so that I will be more aware about them and not be affected when I make decisions myself.  One of the cognitive biases that I have noticed over the week is what is called recency bias. This is a tendency to weigh the latest information more heavily than new data, without realizing it.  We tend to become so confident in what we think we know that decisions are hastily made with very limited data.  So in order for me to improve decision making in this matter in the following week, I will need to seek more data, facts and contextual information before a proposal can be given and decision made.  Find out more here:  Recency Bias .  pearlie 

How Calvin watches TV

Image
  pearlie

Another worship song off from my list

Image
  I was singing  Christ is Enough  by Hillsong Worship this morning when I suddenly noticed the first line of the song that goes, "Christ is my reward".  I used the word "suddenly" here because even though I have known this song and have been singing it for months now, I only just noticed it. It proves that my brain is usually so bombarded with so much information that I inadvertently filter most of it away. I think I am more aware now because I am currently reading Visual Intelligence, Sharpen Your Perception, Change Your Life by Amy E. Herman, which I will do a book review when I finish reading it. For now I can say that the book is very good and if you would like an e-copy, now is the time to get it while it's still on sale at  $2.99  in Amazon. While reading the book, I learnt about really seeing and observing things, and while you can't actually "see" a song, I became more aware of the words used.  When I was singing Christ is Enough , I was

Time we waste away

Image
I have been conducting the 7 Habits of Highly Effective People programme at work for goodness knows how many times now that I most probably can do it with my eyes closed. However, I soon decided that I have to be truthful when I share with the participants certain things like the Time Matrix.    It is a matrix between what is important and urgent. Quadrant 1 represents things that are important and urgent and it is labeled as the quadrant of Necessity. Quardrant 2 is a quadrant of Effectiveness, Quadrant 3 Distraction and Quadrant 4 Wastage.  I have no problems talking about Q1, Q2 and Q3 but when I explained Q4 to the participants today and advising them to eliminate it completely, I had to admit to them that I find myself in that quadrant a lot of times these days, what with my current addition of Korean dramas.  I am telling myself that it is not healthy to spend all my free time on it. I am missing my time on Q2 stuff like thinking and writing, reading and praying, journaling and c

I am a confirmed procrastinator

Image
Yes, my name is Pearlie and I am a procrastinator.  If I am not given a deadline, it will take me almost forever to complete something and even if there was a deadline, I will do it at the very last minute. I have this assessment to take and I have been procrastinating it for two whole months. There is no deadline and I am wishing there is one so that at least I will have to force myself to complete it.  I found this TED Talk absolutely truthful about who and what I am.  Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator by Tim Urban I better get the assessment done by the end of this week, on Friday. I need to pretend it is the dead deadline.  pearlie

Being in the zone

Image
I have not been "in the zone" for some time now and with the many meetings I have at work, I really miss the time when I basically spend the entire time absorbed in work and feeling focused and motivated. In searching for what it means by being in the zone, I found out about Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, a Hungarian psychologist recognised for his work on the concept of flow. Here is his flow model in our mental states in terms of challenge and skill level.   This is new to me and I would love to get my hands on his books to read. pearlie

Be an adult and speak like one

Image
Why do some people do not seem to have any kind words in their system?  This reminds me of a communication model I learnt when I was working in my KPMG days, the Transactional Analysis model.  I used it for a training programme last year, but received feedback that we shouldn't be looking at or learning old and apparently obsolete tools and models.  I now beg to differ. I learnt from Luc de Brabandere in his  On Strategy: What Managers can Learn from Philosophers  lectures that models are not right or wrong, and in this case if I can add, not old or new, it is whether they are useful. And I found this Transactional Analysis model quite useful in understanding and improving my communication with other people.  I still only know the basics of it but it proposes that each of us would choose one ego state out of three whenever we speak to others. The ego states are Parent, Adult and Child, with the Parent and Child ego states taking a positive or negative form. The desirable state to b

My favourite time travel stories

Image
I love time travel movies and TV series, never mind that it is hard to work out their logic and some simply do not make sense and worse, some have loads of gaps that they ignore and never address.  I don't mind because they are still very good stories and here are a few of my favourites, not in any order of preference.  About Time (2013)   The Lake House (2006)   X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)   Interstellar (2014)   Edge of Tomorrow (2014)   Somewhere in Time (1980)   Midnight in Paris (2011)   Kate & Leopold (2001)   Back to the Future (1985)   Quantum Leap (1989-1993)   Doctor Who (2005- )   Star Trek: Voyager (1995-2001)   I've only started on Korean dramas recently and I really like this one: The Queen and I (2012), except I must say that a lot of scenes here don't make sense especially the suicide one. Sorry for the spoiler but can one save himself while being hung? I doubt it.    My hubby is recommending me The Twelve Monkeys (2015- ) but looking at the pictur

Prayer to be patient and even-tempered

Image
  It is my experience that when I pray for patience, my patience will surely be tested. Sometimes I catch myself still praying for patience, but it is at a time when I truly needed it, especially with difficult and toxic people.  So I found this prayer to be patience helpful.  Lord,   Here I am facing a new day. I know that without yielding to your calmness and contentment, I will succumb to frustration and irritation.    I seek your help today.   Make me more aware of my emotions and my attitudes. Remind me that I have control over the attitudes that I choose to present to the world.    Remind me that I can learn to overcome every challenging situation today by putting on the shoes of peace and displaying an even temper.    Remind me to show kindness.   Give me more ability to receive your love and give it away to others today.*   Help me to work hard and do my best. But help me to care more about loving others than I care about getting tasks done.    Lord, I want to grow spiritually

The only time a kid rendered me speechless

Image
I once asked a little boy, "How old are you?" "Five," he replied.  Without missing a beat, he continued, "How old are you?" "Err..." I do not have issues with my age but I have never expected that from a kid. I just laughed and gave him a huge smile.  pearlie

I totally forgot about the free book in Logos

Image
I was so caught up with the book deals in Amazon Kindle that I forgot completely about the free monthly book in Logos.com!  I couldn't believe myself.  I used to check them out and get the free books on the 1st of every month.  But I totally forgot about it in October and had not my good friend send me an email about it, which he usually does not, I would have missed the deal. And they are good books too.  For those who do not know about it, Logos.com offers a free book plus another at a deal every month for the benefit of people who find it hard to get access to good theological books where they are.  I must not forget again in the coming months.  pearlie

Should I stop blogging?

Image
  I have seriously thought about stopping my blogging several times now. And I thought about doing it over the past few days.  It's about security issues, about having nothing important to say, about the times when I struggle to find the time and the mood to write.  But I'm still on it.  I have stopped blogging in 2009, only doing it sporadically.  It took me 5 years to get back into a daily blogging in 2014.  The reason I'm still sticking to it is because I know I will never get back to it if I quit. And I still think it is a good thing to blog, albeit about stuff that does not really matter to anyone but me.  It helps me think, it forces me to reflect my days and I will have a log of what mattered to me everyday over the years.  But I know I will still think about stopping as I go on. Maybe I should stop thinking so much. But that will even be a tougher thing to do.  pearlie 

Daydreaming

You get ideas daydreaming. You get ideas from being bored. You get ideas all the time. The only difference between writers and other people is we notice when we're doing it. ~ Neil Gaiman Vizualization is daydreaming with a purpose.  ~ Bo Bennett I'm often daydreaming, and it's because I've always like the idea of there being something more than the normal world.  ~ Samantha Shannon I had no real idea I was going to become a writer. It was just a game for me. I just liked pretending, daydreaming and imagining.  ~ Rabindranath Maharaj  pearlie 

Do we reinstate a repented fallen pastor?

Image
Pastor Wong's sermon today was from John 21:15-25 on the restoration and reinstatement of repented fallen Christians.  He began by giving reference to the early Christians who recanted on their faith in the presence of severe persecution. This reminded me of what I read in William J. Bennett's Tried by Fire, the Story of Christian's First Thousand Years (which I am still reading).   Tried by Fire, the Story of Christianity's First Thousand Years by William J. Bennett I have read before about the great persecutions that happened in the harbinger days of the Early Church, and about Christians who suffered greatly physically, mentally and emotionally but persevered through, even martryed. It was only when I read this book that I found out that the Early Church had to go through the aftermath of those persecutions and what they should do with Christians who had recanted to save their lives from being massacred but returned hoping to be reinstated into the church.  For exam

Banking for the digitally illiterate elderly

Image
  We were at a get together dinner with both sides of my family, my parents and my mother-in-law, my brother and sisters-in-law, when we were discussing about helping my mother-in-law with her banking facilities.  We talked about how we can help her as all banks are soon moving fully into digital banking.  It was then when I thought that banks should have a specialized paid and premium service provided to elderly folks who have problems with the digital world. They really have no concept of the online world  let alone knowing how to get around apps and email accounts and online banking.  I have been in the service of several digitally challenged older folks and I spend quite a lot of time with them helping them figure it out and more often than not, I am showing them the same things over and over and over again.  This is not a trivial matter. They will have a big problem when the banks goes fully digital. And moreover, they are less able to avert themselves from scams, phishing and mal

How to win people over: The Like Switch

Image
  The Like Switch, An Ex-FBI Agent's Guide to Influencing, Attracting and Winning People Over by Jack Schafer My hubby told me quite awhile ago about this  podcast  in BFM that caught my interest. It is an interview with an ex-FBI agent on how to switch on your "like" switch, to win people over. He wrote a book on it and I saved it in my Amazon wishlist back in July when the interview was broadcasted.  I was preparing for the final module in the development programme I am delivering at work (and why is the last of things the toughest?) and I was reminded of this book yesterday afternoon and before I left office, I purchased it without much delay anymore.  It is a good book with a lot of things to learn, and a lot of things that I need to practice on to gain the skills.  I found myself being more attentive to what I do and say when I'm with people. I was at a synergy meeting and I realized I was doing several things mentioned in the book! I also became more sensitive t

Why are some people always late?

I held a briefing session for a training programme I will be carrying out, and the topic I spent a lot of time talking about was punctuality.  I am trying to understand people's behavior as to why would one be deliberately late for something. I think it boils down to these two reasons:  1. It is the culture of the context they are in They are so used to being flexible about time that it has become a habit. It might have been ingrained into their mind that being late has become acceptable, that it will be abnormal to be early.  2. It is not important and they don't care much about it It may be something that they feel that they are forced to attend. It is something they don't find very important and therefore they just need to be there, at the time of their convenience.  I found this article  The Real Reason Some of Us are Chronically Late  interesting. It says that "people are late because they don't want to be early".  I was like, "What? Really?" I

Ok, Ok, I admit I'm a Doraemon fan

Image
My son actually found  Doraemon Ramune  in MidValley and got me a bottle. The question now is to drink or not to drink.    pearlie

I am shamelessly addicted

Image
I am so addicted to iflix at the moment I am getting worried. Gone are the days where TV programmes were programmed, that is you watch them by the episode at its fixed day and time by the week.  But these days, you can practically watched them by the season by the day! I did say once that  I better not try watching another Korean drama ,  but God help me, I'm now shamelessly addicted to them.  Flower Boys Next Door I like the actress and started watching this series and I got "stuck" to it right from the first episode. The actor Yoon Shi-yoon is simply too adorable for words - like a cute but handsome puppy jumping and prancing about wherever he goes. I only found the other guy so sappy that all I wanted to do is to skipped all his scenes. And I find that there is so much shouting going on too that I swiped to avoid those scenes. The shouting distressed me.    Boys Over Flowers I still haven't figured what it is with boys and flowers, but I tried watching this one bei

Crazy for Ramune

Image
I don't know how my son found out about it but he recently went crazy over this Japanese carbonated soft drink called Ramune.  Ramune is derived from the English word lemonade transliterated into Japanese.  We first found it in Atria shopping mall, the Ramu bottle. And of course he got me to buy him several.    And when he found them in the Codd-neck bottles, he went even crazier. I could not leave De Market without a couple of bottles at least.  The Codd-neck bottles are named after the inventor, Hiram Codd. They are made of glass and sealed with a marble; the codd head is held in place by the pressure of the carbonation in the drink. (1)   What the mommy like though is the Doraemon one!    pearlie  1 Wikipedia

A contextual look at the three appearances of Jesus after his resurrection

Image
  Today's sermon is from  John 21:1-12 . Rev Wong Fong Yang gave a good exposition of the passage and I learnt a lot.  This was the third time Jesus appeared to the disciples after his resurrection and I see now that the context of his appearances were pregnant with meaning.  The first appearance was when the disciples were so afraid of being arrested that they gathered behind locked doors. Jesus appeared before them to help them overcome their fears. The second appearance was when Thomas was around and he showed them that he had indeed been resurrected, he is alive.  His third appearance was by the shores of the Sea of Galilee. Pastor Wong cross referenced it to  Luke 5:1-11 , where Jesus first called them to be fishers of men. In both events, they were fishing the whole night and there were no fishes, not a single catch. And in both cases, Jesus asked them to lower their nets and they caught a whole lot of them.  This looks like an intentional reaffirmation of the call of the dis

No wallet or ID but still got around fine

Image
I always use my big ol' Tumi bag when I go out. I have everything in that bag and it is much more convenient to just grab and go. And I know that I always forget something when I take a different bag but I thought I'd take a smaller bag today. I was right. Using a different bag does not work for me, at all.  I drove around town the entire morning without my identity card and driving license because I took them out of my wallet several days ago and left them in the big bag.  I found out when I was asked for identification when I needed to get into the housing area to pick up my mother-in-law for breakfast. I had to give the guard a sorry and pathetic look to get through.  I got back home in the afternoon and retrieved the cards and slot them back into my wallet.  I then went out at 2 pm for choir practice and after that dinner with Ee-Tan, again grabbing the small bag not realizing that when I placed the cards back into my wallet, I returned my wallet back into the big bag.  Now

A Thousand Words #191

Image
  pearlie

The best character on TV ever

Image
I  mentioned  several days ago that I have not any favourite characters yet in Downton Abbey.  I have just begun watching the third season and I now have one.  It's none other than Dowager Countess of Grantham Violet Crawley played by the brilliant Dame Maggie Smith.    She is such an awesome character and I look forward to every scene she has and I am never disappointed with what she has to say and especially how she says it. When I am done with the series, I should go to YouTube and find a video that has all her scenes stitched together and it will be a great satisfaction to watch them all at one go.  pearlie

Videos on Communication

I was facilitating a training in the last two days when I was sharing with the participants some very good videos on communication by the Standard Graduate School of Business.  I only showed them two out of the 29 videos and I think they were splendid. Check out  here .  pearlie

The Art Forger

Image
  The Art Forger, A Novel by B. A. Shapiro It felt like I have not read a novel in a long time and when I saw this book in Amazon's daily deals today, I thought I'd give it a try.  I read its preview and I do feel it promises a good read. I will see if it is so in a few days.  pearlie

Late into it but now very well hooked

Image
I know I am a late comer when it comes to the Downton Abbey TV drama series that lasted from 2010 to 2015.  I have tried watching it before and I remember the first few scenes quite well about the death of the heirs in the sinking of the Titanic, and an introduction to the parallel lives of the family and their whole horde of maids, butler, valet and footmen.  I am now midway through its second season in iFlix and I am seriously hooked.  I do not have any favourite characters at the moment, but I have one character I love to hate, Sarah O'Brien, brilliantly portrayed by Siobhan Finneran.    I find that the characters in Downton Abbey are all very, very interesting, very well played and well developed. Everyone of them tells a story.  And I find O'Brien's character very interesting indeed. You would call her a baddie but there are so many layers that you can see in her. She is loyal but yet selfish, clever but conniving, hardworking but calculating. And so far she keeps gett

Breadfruits at Taman Desa

Image
I wanted to go get groceries from De Market at Taman Desa after church today but my hubby kept commenting that it was too far away.  I insisted and he finally relented.  Had he knew that Faber Tower where De Market is, has been spruced up very nicely, he wouldn't have been reluctant to go.  I had wanted to go try the restaurants there and we decided on Breadfruits, and we were so glad we did.    We ordered these, which tasted so very good.   Gourmet Antipasto Breakfast Platter for me. Satisfry Up for my hubby.  Tomato Chorizo Pasta for my son.  And we saw this only on our way out.    pearlie Photo Source:  Malaysian Flavours ,  Malaysia Food and Restaurant Reviews ,  Always Travelicious

Happy Golden Wedding Anniversary

Image
  My parents celebrated their golden anniversary today, 50 years of love and togetherness. Happy Anniversary, mom and dad! May the good Lord continue to bless you with many more happy years ahead.  pearlie