Tuesday, 20 July 2021

Good Reads/Podcasts/Video: June 2021

Yes, we're 2/3 through July. June has been a month where my priorities are all over the place. And the lockdown blues have definitely been affecting me. Unintentionally, I've deprioritised documenting my learnings - which really shouldn't be the case. Would still like to make time to properly reflect and document insights I've gotten from articles/podcasts/videos, and also once you stop doing something consistently, it is easy to give up completely.

1. 3 healthier ways to cope with criticism, disappointment and defeat - TED

"When a negative emotion strikes, it’s as if we hurriedly reach into the bucket and grab anything to make ourselves feel better. We don’t pay much attention to the kind of coping strategy we pull out and whether it involves self-deception or not. As long as it makes us feel better and it’s halfway plausible, it’ll do."

This article popped up on my social media timeline at the right time - it appeared when I can't help but feel rather defeated and disappointed and have been reaching into my "feel-good" bucket to help myself feel better.

The article suggests these three ways to cope with criticism/disappointment/defeat: 

1. Make a plan - Come out with some sort of next steps.

2. Notice silver lining - "A silver lining to any mistake is the lesson you’re going to extract from the experience, which you can use to help save you from similar mistakes in the future."

3. Focus on a different goal

2.  Your Insecurities Aren’t What You Think They Are - WorkLife With Adam Grant

We often think that the more experienced we get, the less insecure we become - that may not necessarily be true. If we achieved something in a breeze, it might just be because we didn't set a high enough bar for ourselves.

This podcast served as a good reminder to myself :) To the insecurities I often face. 

3. There are 5 kinds of clutter — which one is filling your life? - TED

The article shared that there are these five types of clutter: 

1. Physical - physical items like books, toys

2. Digital - inbox, large disorganised files

3. Mental - long long to-do lists, your fear, whatever that's in your head  

4. Emotional - negative patterns and beliefs (eg: I can't do this, I'm not good enough)

4. Spiritual - lack of forgiveness & peace

Like the author, I'd always pride myself as someone who is aware and intentional about the first two clutters. Little did I know I was inundated by mental and emotional clutter most of the time - my never-ending worries, thoughts etc often punctuate my dreams. 

Writing down my mental clutter and having lists helps :)

4. Three checklist templates to motivate you based on your mood energy level - The Financial Diet

1. Determine what mood you’re in (and be honest with yoursel
2. Base your set of tasks on step #1
3. Check things off throughout the day (leave room for misses and forgiveness)

The article provided a sample checklist for three different moods which might resonate with you- 

(1) For when you're feeling rather meh

(2) For when you're feeling just OK. where you feel that you can take on some tasks but nothing overly ambitious

(3) For when you feel like you're ready to take on the world!

5. The Importance Of Mourning Losses (Even When They Seem Small) - Life Kit NPR

I absolutely love this podcast! I realised that in the month of June, the uneasy feeling I've been feeling was grief - I was grieving about the change of my routine from FMCO. Grieving about leaving my job. Grieving about the absence of my old colleagues when starting a new job. I was going through different stages of grief without me realising it! 

The podcast suggests having a "ritual" to mourn your loss. Eg: buying myself my favourite food to celebrate the start of a new job. To write a letter to self when I leave my job. Etc etc.


That's it for the month of June. Here's to more learning, reflection and growth. Hoping that everyone is doing well :) 

Tuesday, 13 July 2021

Licky Chan & The Poke Guys, KL

Boozy ice cream, anyone? 

Licky Chan & The Poke Guys is located along Jalan Yap Ah Shak, at one of the old pre-war shop lots in downtown KL. Its facade is hard to miss, with the clean white facade splashed with bright orange geometric, Licky Chan definitely stood out from its neighbours (you'll see a tailor shop to the right of it, and an insurance agent shop to the left).

As you can see from the photo above - the outdoor seating area is a popular photo-op spot, like the rest of the shop. Owned by the same company as Botak Liquor, JOLOKO, and you can order drinks from Botak Liquor here too! 

We came here after a lovely meal at JOLOKO, it is just a short ~ 3 minutes walk, and you get 15% off for your ice-cream if you can show them your receipt from JOLOKO! (As of April 2021!)

Upon stepping into Licky Chan, you'll be greeted by the warm orange hue, that may or may not be too electrifying to your eyes

Licky Chan serves both boozy (cleverly named "cone-tails") and non-boozy ice-cream flavours, which you may sample before making your purchase. Prices for boozy ice cream begins from RM14.80, whereas the non-alcoholic selection begins from RM9.80. And as always, the price for a second scoop is much affordable.

Their ice-cream menu for your reference - had so much trouble picking out which flavour I'd like to try because they all seem so interesting!

We came on a Sunday night and the place was busy, seatings might seem limited but fret not, the shop actually stretches in quite deep, and there are also plenty of seats upstairs. 
The little staircase that leads upstairs

View from upstairs - on the right side, there is a weird TV room that looked as though it came out from a movie (you'll have to see it yourself :p), and to the left, there is a room filled with playpens balls, which seemingly is a popular Instagram spot. Decided to stay put downstairs because it was seemingly more crowded upstairs, with the Instagram crowds :P #penjarakansocial yo!
The random blobs of blocks at the seating area downstairs.
Rum Rhapsody (+ RM2 from base price) & Lickin' on Gin & Juice (+ RM1.50 from base price). RM27.50
A little pricier than your usual ice cream but it was good! My favourite would be Rum Rhapsody, with the nutty taste of pistachio and ice cream laced with rum. Jia Qi approves. The only qualm is that their ice cream was seemingly melting rather fast!
Each ice cream comes with a fortune cookie...which, I'm not sure if all the content would be this random :p 

In case you're wondering why it's called "The Poke Guys"...it's because "The Poke Guys" is the tattoo shop nestled in the same shop lot as Licky Chan! And silly me thought that it is because they serve poke bowl as well :P

Licky Chan & The Poke Guy
24, Jalan Yap Ah Shak, 
Chow Kit, 50300 Kuala Lumpur, 
Wilayah Persekutuan Kuala Lumpur

Instagram: @lickychan
Website: https://www.lickychan.com/

Business Hours:
11am-8pm, Tuesdays-Sundays
Closed on Mondays

Thursday, 8 July 2021

Monthly Goals Review: June 2021

What day is it already? 

We're more than halfway through 2021, and the realisation that we have been in strict lockdown for the most part of 2021 has been hitting me hard. 

June has been...a roller coaster. I left my job and felt the emptiness of it. I thought I'd be "jobless" and "aimless" but the opposite was true - I was fortunate to have gotten various freelancing projects. I went full-on with my home bakery business, Batter Together. I started teaching part-time. I did a few programmatic works for a social enterprise. I was having lots of fun and found a lot of fulfilment in doing all these - but burnt-out crept upon me, without me realising it. I was feeling really tired by the end of June, and some of the sparks that I initially had in me sort of died off. Thank goodness I have a really good friend helping me out for my side business, who has been keeping me accountable and my spirits going.

Similar to the month of May, I am feeling frustrated from the extended lockdown as well. I am missing my friends. Missing being able to go out. Missing being able to go jogging (I'm in a EMCO zone so jogging is a no-go)

Perhaps my burnt-out was further fuelled by the frustration from the extended lockdown. The string of not-so-great news that flood our social media timeline recently. I decided to take things easy and slow in the first week of July, which explains this very late post. 

Financial Goals 

1) Save at least 40% of my income every month 

Took a huge pay cut in the month of June as I:

- left my full-time role

- ventured into a side business, where it's still in the infancy stage where I have not fully maximised my efficiency, and hence, low-profit margin

Despite the huge pay cut, I felt as though I was working much longer hours. I realised when you're running your own business/freelancing, you really have got to up your negotiation game, be confident and know your worth/rate. I have learnt and gained so much in the month of June on how to negotiate. 

Salute and respect to all the entrepreneurs, business owners and freelancers out there. It really isn't easy :")

I have also incurred some unexpected large-ticket expenses in June, such as my motor insurance renewal and car servicing, which I thought I had prepared using my bucket system BUT, the car servicing bill came up to twice the amount I was expecting :")

Despite so, I'm grateful that I have still side projects that provided me with some income. Grateful that I still have a roof above my head, and do not need to starve. 

Personal Growth / Learnings

1) Read at least one paragraph of non-fiction/fiction every day

For the month of June 2021, I've read two fiction and one non-fiction book.

I realised that once you forgo a habit, it becomes really easy to continue forgoing it. Felt rather disappointed in me for not writing reviews of the books I've read. It felt easy to forgo writing a review as well. 

Definitely, something to work on. Better late than never.

2) Participate in at least one online event and/or online course every month

Similar to (1), I lost my momentum for online courses since end-April and now it's really hard for me to swing back. Thought that I could invest more time in my own learning and development this month, but nope D: I'm trying my best not to beat myself up too much, since the month of June was really a packed one. 

I've managed to complete a Coursera Guided Project Course: Google Ads For Beginners which was helpful for me to understand how Google Ads work and will come into handy for the expansion of Batter Together :) 

I've attended a simple leathercraft workshop hosted by @tamanhatijz & @little.great.things. I won this workshop experience from their giveaway contest. I've got to say this was such a fun workshop! We made a simple leather cardholder and were taught the basics of leather care. I'm actually looking forward to join more virtual workshop like this, which would be a fresh respite from our lockdown routine.

3) Cook/Bake at least one dish per week

Similar to my other self-development topics...June was a month where I did not explore much on the culinary side (less my cookies R&D). My body is physically tired during the weekends from cooking baking :") trying to build up my stamina and strength and not lose my momentum!

Week 1 - Sourdough Tortillas and jerk pulled pork
Week 2: Korean Garlic Cheese Bread, Persian Love Cake
Week 3: Brownie Chips, pumpkin hummus, and pumpkin bread roll
Week 3
Week 4: Houjicha Cookies

That's it for June - a busy, yet fulfilling month, and a month where I felt drained, both mentally and physically. 

Things to look forward to in July

1. A new job

I received a job offer and am actually really excited about it! Will have to learn to manage my time and energy better in order to juggle between my full-time work life, my side business and also my personal life. 

2. Getting my second dose of the vaccine!

Definitely the highlight of the month, or maybe this year.

I don't think I have anything more to add for now :") But I've been curating "post-lockdown lists" with friends, which gives me something to lock forward to.

That's it folks :") Do stay safe and take care. And hope that things will get better. 

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