Working from home

This episode talks about working from home and how to Organise your own space. Especially when you are working from home, how do you void distraction from your child or administrative stuff.

Free Agents: 16: R2-D2 on My Desk https://overcast.fm/+G9XM8RU74

You see, as a freelancer we have “freedom” to work from anyway we want but at the same time knowing that we have “freedom” we cannot abuse it. We also cannot let others abuse it too. 

For example, when I work from home. I set hours that I do not help to perform “home tasks”, like getting the milk / groceries from the supermarket. I can certainly help to open the door or pick up registered mail. So Long it does Not distract me from work. 

The beauty of working from home is that we can schedule our time to do groceries when we want, especially during off peak hours. Nevertheless, the challenge is not to abuse it. 

Suggestions 

  1. Set aside time for real work
  2. Let your family members know that the time for real work and what are the times you can help with admin chores.

I believe they will understand you will be more productive at home too:)

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Maybe it’s time 

5:30am and I just called the ambulance. 

Since my mom discharged two days ago, she has gone from bad to worst. When she discharged she was vibrant and alive. We brought to the Food courts and she was enjoying the food. 

Yesterday when I was back from ICT, I realised she was no in a good condition. She started having issues with her swallowing and also becoming weaker. She has issues wearing her pants after going to the toilet. She has no strength to walk, the hands are trembling and the blood pressure is high at 220. 

We thought maybe it is just part of the condition. So she took her usual recommdation and headed for the bed. But she keeps waking up to spit out her phlegm which we realised that there is nothing. 

At 5:30 we decided we had to send her. Her condition was going bad to worst. 

What’s on my mind right now?

  1. Her health

  2. Medical bills 

Mom, mild stroke

Last week, my mom had mild stroke. I discovered it when she started talking in a sense that I could not understand. During that time she was still watching TV and I was to go for my bath. I rush out and check on her.

At the moment in time, I was unsure if she was having stroke because when I tried to talk to her, she suddenly seems to be alright again. But in a few minutes time, the speech difficult starts coming back. 

I was confused and not sure if I should be calling the ambulance. There are ads on TV that shows that if there are signs of stroke, we should call the amhbukance immediate but one moment she is alright another she is not. 

This is the ad: I think everyone should watch it, it tells you how to spot a stroke patience. 

So I decided to send her to the GP, while making our way to GP, she seems to be doing fine. Ability to talk normally and also say that she does not want to go hospital. (Old people always like to say that they do not like to go hospital). But I also sense her lack of strength in gripping as she holds me hand. 

I thought that everything was alright when I reach the GP, because it was late and she the number two in queue. Upon talking to the GP, the ambulance was called.

I took my first ambulance ride to the hospital. Now at this juncture, it’s hard for me to decide if I have called the ambulance in the first place. Because I understand that A&E is for emergency and only call Ambulance when there is an emergency. But the challenge I have is what is an emergency? An emergency to you might not be an emergency to me, especially when I’m not able to determined the situation. 

So there she was in the A&E, Doctors and Nurses at KPTH, was nice and very understanding. They shared more the conditions and decided to give some tests. 

When the test results was out, she had indeed had a stroke. A mild one, thank God. But I also realised she was getting weaker and less of her normal self. 

She was to stay in hospital for more checks and for her condition to stable. During the week, she also looks better with the good care from hospital and not to mentioned that she made friends with nurses too. 

This is my learning. Do not hesitate to call an ambulance when you deem there is a Stroke happening to someone. Watch out for the following 

  1. Speech difficults
  2. Face dropping 
  3. Lost of strength 

These are the critical signs. If you see these, you call hospital immediately, immediately.

Learning Facebook Ads

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have been learning so much about Facebook ads

I was never about fan on Facebook Ads, I always think that many of the metrics that Facebook is giving you are “fake” or somehow might have “overstated” kind of effect. So if you are a business owner, when you see those big numbers of views and reach, you will feel good.

I learn on thing, never say never

For the last few months, I have been learning much about Facebook Ads. I still take the metrics that Facebook gives me with a “pitch of salt” but I find that the art of using paid traffic to get customers or an audience is an interesting concept.

I believe a business fails because of many reasons, but one of it is distribution. ie getting your products or services in front of your audiences eyes. Once a business is able to its distribution correct, that is 33% of the battle won. Looking back, many of my ideas failed because of distribution.  I might have a good product but not many people know about so no one buys.

As I learn, paid traffic works with the law of numbers. You target more people and in that group a small percentage gets it from you, you get your sales.

Here’s what I learn from the campaigns that I have ran:

  1. Facebook ads algorithm keeps changing, so there are much to learn everyday. So the articles you read here or elsewhere might be outdated. However, strategies and the tips offered can be used
  2. I ran a few campaigns, I realised that learning Facebook Ads is like playing mahjong. Need to pay school fees, you can see the campaigns, obviously not successful. It could be my objective and it could be my content.
  3. I also need to read more into the metrics so as to give a gauge if I’m doing alright. So I’m writing my experiences on here , so i can look back.

Love to hear from you if you are Facebook ads for your work. Especially so if you are selling stuff online in Singapore.

Hacking and Betrayal

Planet Money: #596: Hacking The iPhone For Fun, Profit, And Maybe Espionage via Link

I’m very into podcasts considering that when I try to do my own podcast locally people say that you are never able to make money 💰 in Singapore (I have yet but soon). Also there are not much podcasters in Singapore too. 

Anyway, since I listen so much I might as well share you one a few that is pretty awesome. 

Above is an old episode from Planet Money. You would be amazed how money can change a person. Worth a listen.

Expensive Coffee in Singapore

The price of coffee in Singapore is raising again. This time round coffeeshop owners are saying that this is mainly due to the water price hike that the government is going to put in place in July 2017.

I agreed that when you are running a business you need to make money. I’m also trying to run one now. If you do a search on Google, you will find this article that from Today Online

“(The cost of water) is only a small part of their operating costs, maybe 5 to 10 per cent? So it should not affect the coffee prices,” he said. The association represents some 400 coffee shops.

via Hawkers, coffee shops to keep prices despite water cost hike

However, the coffeeshop owners that they interview in the article are mostly from big coffee chains like Toast Box and Ya Kun Kaya Toast, it is already damn WTF when their kopiokosong cost $1.40 or could be more (it’s been a long time since I go to coffee chains for their coffee) even if they DO not raise the price, the margin is already quite high.

There are a few arguments to this:

  • you are paying for the AC
  • you are paying for the environment
  • you are paying for the high rental
  • you pay more for Starbucks

On the part about Starbucks, at least they are using better beans (than again I seldom go Starbucks too. I go for meeting, maybe sit around to use their internet. Mainly using it for their “environment”)

The coffeeshop owners I’m talking about in my post are those from the neighbourhood. Some of them are already raising prices,  very soon they will catch up with the price from the coffee chains. Again you might say:

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They need. But they should not take advantage of the system. Because this issue is going hit the uncles and aunties more. Some uncles and aunties do not make as much and neighbourhood coffeeshops are where they get their daily staples / sit around have drinks and make friends.

Ok. So you type so long is just to complain. Can you do anything?

errrr. not much. this post is pretty much a rant

But I like to share that maybe making coffee at home is a better option. I do it everyday. I do not use expensive beans. I use normal kopitiam beans  that I buy from the market and I use it with Aeropress. Gives you the “Americano” kopitiam kind of feel. I got the beans from here. $8.00 for 500 grams. Let say 20 grams per cup. Thats 25 cups of coffee for $8.00.

You make the coffee that you like, sweeter or creamy up to you. You want damn “gao” also can.

We made fifteen dollars

We made $15.90 for the month of Feb 2017. (I know what you are thinking, please do not laugh)

I understand that if you are working part-time even at MacDonald, you would be making more than us in a day! (to think that I work full-time for this)

via Income Report Feb 2017 – Bosslee Canvas

Actually, it is $15.90 to be exact. If you read from my home page, currently I’m running a Shopify shop and I’m sharing my income report with everyone. More details in the post.

 

Family and Money 

I have been looking for work for sometime now. Maybe about 3 months? 

Running a startup, I used to have the time flexibility to take care of my mom. The best part is able to work from home and if need to, head into the office late because I had to bring her to see doctor. (I’m writing this as I wait patiently for my mom’s turn to see doctor, it is super crowded but I truly appreciate the medi care in Singapore) 

Anyway, as I continued to look for a job, I’m worry that if I look for a stable job, I’m not able to have the time flexibility to take care of my mom. But without work, there is no income and I cannot be without income for a Long time.

What should I do?

Thinking aloud and writing out my thoughts. How can I make a living from freelancing? How can I build up a business again, a solid business with sound business model. 

For the past 6-8 months, I been testing the idea of Fieldbeta. It’s a tool for facility management, even thou there is traction with a single customers. The bigger customers have their own system and it seems that they are not as open to saas software yet. (This could be a local issue) 

After repeated failures, I need small wins and I’m giving myself datelines to my projects. It doesn’t always have to win but I need to move forward to succeed. I’m extending this to quickbooks and let see what it can do. 

big ideas to small ideas

No miracles allowed. And it helps if each step is a step that’s worked before, somewhere and sometime else. The other question that helps with this is, “has that step ever worked before?”

via Seth’s Blog: “And then what happens?”

Sometimes you have a big idea, it might see very daunting at first but if you break it down into smaller steps. It can be more achievable. I have a problem, I was think that big ideas are not for me because of “blah blah blah”, well I am wrong, I can have and execute on big ideas too. As long I break it down into steps that are meaningful.

Burn out

Is it burn out or burnt out? Dunno, don’t care. Maybe it’s time to rest. Time for a proper soul searching and rest. 
Met a Friend today, we chatted. He asked a few good questions that made me ponder if I’m jumping into things. 

  1. When was the last time I rest 
  2. Really rest, meaning no other work or stuff
  3. No trying to build this or sell that?
  4. When was it? 

I could not answer. 

I think I could not answer because since I left, I took up contract work. Followed by taking on a grant for a bot idea and lastly trying to do physical selling. All messy.

No proper rest. 

But what is proper rest?