Saturday, August 24, 2013

My Life So Far

The reading of John Maxwell’s Laws of Leadership sparks off this message. John’s article would not have hit me if I have not come this far. I first read his book titled “21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership’ decades ago and he was an inspiration. I am admitting I am the result of his words of wisdom.

After all these years of struggles and with God’s blessings, I see the present as a harvest period. Time to enjoy my pace and smell the roses.

I am pleased to have achieved financial freedom. One of the major milestones in my life, which was constantly on top of my priority list. Being able to accomplish it at my age gives me an ecstatic feeling.

Personally, life is all about choices and decision-making. I echoed Sir Winston Churchill’s quote, ‘I am a simple man, only satisfied with the finest’. At this juncture of my life, I have under my disposal, a wider range of choices.

Daily Transportation Mode
Sports, saloon or sports utility vehicle

My last ride in the Singapore public transport (bus and MRT) was more than 2 decades ago. I have vague memory of how the interior of our MRT carriages looks like or how the MRT lines interconnected with one another. But I can vividly remember how the subways in London and Tokyo work. I am totally out of touch.

Air Travel Mode
When come to air travel, I need space to pamper myself. I also find air travel offers the best solitude since I am disconnected (not by choice) from the world. This time space allows me to focus on self-reflection. Business class is a norm and occasional first class cabin gives me the physical and mental comfort. However, I find the attendant’s overly attentive service irritating and certainly dislike airline foods.

Also, I have missed out the regular check-in counter in the Changi airport terminals. The JetQuay Terminal offers plenty of private space allowing me to immerse myself into isolation and quietness, essential nutrients to recharge my physical and mental self. I find the staff there extremely understanding leaving passengers like me alone to enjoy the serenity and peace in a ritzy lounge.

My Typical Work Week
I am very free and I don’t act busy. But my mind is always engaged.

I treasured my freedom and defend my personal space. Hence I don’t have a personal assistant to mind over me (trade off). I truly enjoy the absolute movement to determine my work schedule.

I have no fixed routine except for few management meetings. All my managers are very self-motivated know their stuffs well and they give me no or little headaches freeing me for proactive thinking.

It takes good organising skill to work like clockwork and I conduct most of my discussions through mobile.

My mode of communication with them has been set as such:

·      Urgent and importance – via call
·      Importance but not urgent – via message
·      Not urgent – via email
·      Not important – don’t bother

Despite this mobility and freedom, I tend to work harder and longer hours.

I eat to live and eat simply. Lunch is always the same place and same stall over and over again. Again, given the choice, I enjoy lunching alone.

Family dinning out in the evening takes place 4 times a week. Like myself, the family is not adventurous and often we ended up in a few common places around Bukit Timah.

Long Weekends
Come long weekends, I am likely to pack my bags for a short escapade. My ideal getaway is family togetherness and often tries to go as a family unit. These days, it just seems more difficult with the boys having their own social activities.

My Typical Weekends
Instead of sleeping late, I am wired to wake up earlier than usual cause I was sold on the morale story of ‘How Many Saturdays Left?’ As of now, I am down to 1,248 Saturdays. How about you?

I always treasured Saturday morning as it marks the beginning of a weekend. It gives me the isolation and peacefulness to read and pen my thoughts. The crisp morning air always freshen my mind and inspired me to think deeply.

For 30 years, I have been religiously doing my 70 push-ups and 120 sit-ups in the morning and evening. Occasional jogging takes place twice a week around my house.

My current lifestyle is what I have envisaged during my early twenties when I was still taking public transport. The result is a deliberate act through careful planning and meticulous execution. I must admit it was not easy initially especially when we are often taken in by instant gratification.

Living out these moments is certainly a dream comes true.

Yours regards

Mark Phooi

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