Monday, February 21, 2005

Do guys make better "girl" friends?

I've been just wondering if guys make better "girl" friends.. as in close buddies. I've noticed that girls are more sensitive to a lot of things, myself included, and have higher tolerance levels. Girls are more emotional too... and u get those silent treatments, bitch fights, hair pulling haha.. ok, maybe not so dramatic but u get the picture. A guy friend also shared with me that the difference between girls & guys is that... if a girl can't stand another friend's behaviour, they will just keep quiet and tolerate it until she "explodes" one day. For a guy, he will just tell that person off directly. No timebomb-like behaviours.

In recent years, I've been having a few close guy friends to confide in and it's definitely different. Opinions given are more objective & guys tend to see things more logically, so it's great too. Plus, they give you tips on why men behave in the ways they do. Some of my friends tell me that too.. that they prefer to have close guy friends rather than girls. Is it the same for guys?? But then again, u can't go shopping with guys or share giggly gossips. ;) Anyway, just one of my many thoughts.

Retail therapy

There's definitely lots of truth in retail therapy I realized. Just got back from my shopping trip for 4 days in Singapore and went mad with shoes, shoes & shoes. You see, I hardly buy any shoes in Melbourne so each time I come back, I find the urge to shop for all the shoes I can land my hands on. My sis was like "How many shoes do u need? U've only got 2 feet." My answer, "Never enough" ;) There's walking shoes, sandals, thongs, formal shoes, work shoes, sports shoes, pants shoes, pointy shoes, rounded shoes ... they're all different :)

And the kind of happiness I get from shopping is hard to describe, especially if it's a good buy. So I do believe in the power of retail therapy... which explains why I shop more after exams or during stressful periods. It's probably temporary & eats up ur cash haha.. but there's that mysterious utility that comes with it.

Another thing bout shopping I realized is that when u set ur heart out to buy something, u'd never find it! The best buys come spontaneously when u least expect it.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Communication or trust - which is more important?

This blog is inspired by an old friend of mine whom I'd just refer to as Bonk :) We've been having some pretty in depth chats lately and one of the questions he asked was "What do u think is more important in a relationship - communication or trust?" . That got me thinking..and for me, I would say communication. He agrees as well.

Good communication builds trust. That's the reason. Perhaps I learnt it the hard way, because communicating at a deep level isn't really my skill or hobby for that matter, but I realize now how important it is to be able to communicate. Communicating does not mean just talking about daily events & such, it's more on feelings, thoughts, dreams, goals. Setting these things right builds trust and with trust, there'd be strong relationships.

I also realize that the more open you are to people, they will be more open towards you as well, and that's how you get to know someone better. There's so much behind each person, should we choose to delve beyond the surface :) But do not breach trust, otherwise the consequences are devastating.

So that's my other lesson learnt in life lately. I'd work on my communication skills which is my other new year's resolution besides getting to know my way around KL. I wonder which is more challenging ;)

Quarter-life Crisis

Someone sent this to me and it was really eye-opening, as compared to other forwarded emails so I thought I'd put it on my blog. Wonder who wrote this? Geez, perhaps I am going through a quarter-life crisis! What's going on these days? I thought people only face mid-life crisis. Perhaps the world is so demanding these days that crisis hits earlier? So much pressure, so much to do, so much to achieve. Hopefully this won't become a 'Start-of-life-Crisis' in years to come, otherwise it'd be tragic. Don't put so much pressure on little children... we're only young once! It's scary how in some societies children are pressured to do well in all aspects till some actually committed suicide at 12 years of age. Anyway have a read :)
They call it the 'Quarter-life Crisis'. It is when you stop going along with the crowd and start realizing that there are many things about yourselfthat you didn't know and may not like.

You start feeling insecure and wonder where youwill be in a year or two, but then get scared because you barely know where you are now. You start realizing that people are selfish and that, maybe, those friends that you thought you were so close to aren't exactly the greatest people you have ever met, and the people you have lost touch with are some of the most important ones.What you don't recognize is that they are realizing that too, and aren't really cold, catty, mean or insincere, but that they are as confused as you.

You look at your job... and it is not even close towhat you thought you would be doing, or maybe you are looking for a job and realizing that youare going to have to start at the bottom and that scares you.Your opinions have gotten stronger. You see what others are doing and find yourself judging more than usual because suddenly you realize that you have certain boundaries in your life and are constantly adding things to your list of what is acceptable and what isn't. One minute, you are insecure and then the next, secure. You laugh and cry with the greatest force of your life. You feel alone and scared and confused. Suddenly, change is the enemy and you try and cling on to the past with dear life, but soon realize that the past is drifting further and further away,and there is nothing to do but stay where you are or move forward.

You get your heart broken andwonder how someone you loved could do such damage to you. Or you lie in bed and wonder why you can't meet anyone decent enough that you want to get to know better. Or maybe you love someone but love someone else too and cannot figure out why you are doing this because youknow that you aren't a bad person. One night stands and random hook ups start to look cheap. Getting wasted and acting like an idiot starts to look pathetic. You go through the same emotions and questions over and over, and talk with your friends about the same topics because you cannot seem to make a decision. You worry about loans, money, the future and making a life for yourself... and while winning the race would be great, right now you'd just like to be a contender!

What you may not realize is that everyone reading this relates to it. We are inour best of times and our worst of times, trying as hard as we can to figure this whole thing out. Send this to your twenty something friends....maybe it will help someone feel like they aren't alone in their state of confusion.....GOOD LUCK TO ALL OF US!!!!!

Friday, February 11, 2005

Work, work, work

I've been getting lots of advice on my first job lately. Basically the gist of it all is 'learn as much as you can from ur first job', 'don't be afraid to work hard while u are young and without commitments', 'when u have to work overtime see it as equipping urself with skills', 'get in a company with a good reputation or brand name as a headstart' etc. From how I see it, it's all about being positive and having a good attitude despite the circumstances. Perhaps that's the ingredient to coping & future success.

Work, on the other hand, is ultimately just work. It makes people sometimes lose focus of what is really important in life. It's a hard thing to balance anyway coz nowadays companies work u so hard, and u r only entitled to 7-14 days leave depending on seniority etc. With bills to pay and what-nots plus everything depending on performance, it's a mad world out there :) I've to try and keep my feet edged on the ground when I start. It just saddens me that there are not many companies flexible enough to allow their people to have some work/life balance. There are friends of mine who can't be back for Chinese New Year coz of work... their once a year reunion with families and friends... or cousins who have to rush back home after the reunion because of work commitments. .. or having to work weekends. Friends who can't meet up as often or even never, coz of .. work. Families who can't be together because of where work takes them. I just wish there was a solution to these issues, coz I've been hearing enough of them way too much, and soon enough I'd be stuck in that cycle too.

Which reminds me of a Swedish couple that a friend of mine met in her New Zealand trip, who actually sold their house to travel! Reason: They were afraid that they would have no opportunity to do so when they actually have the money or time. :)

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Focus on what matters

Ever since my past 2 blogs, I've tried to basically divert my energy from worrying about unnecessary things, things that I cannot change which are sucking me dry ... to basically focusing on what matters. And it's been good so far, I'm actually feeling happier :) Plus it's the holiday season here with family reunions and all, so it's helping my happy gene too.

I've learnt not to dwell on things that upset me. After all, there are some things that I have no control of and perhaps it's better left that way.. so I've been wasting all my time worrying and analyzing each and everything that happens in my life. Haha..

So moral of the story is, don't dwell in the past, move ahead and enjoy each day at it comes :) There'll always be people out there who try and make life miserable for you. Divert your energy on what matters and on those who matter and care about you. Oh, and always be grateful!

Monday, February 07, 2005

Optimist/pessimist culture?

This blog entry is an extension of my previous blog. While writing the previous blog, I remembered my other observation. Do pardon my generalization... it's just my personal observation on things, and may not totally apply to everyone.

After staying in Aussie-land for the past few years, I realize the differences in culture, coming from a Chinese background. One of the differences that struck me was the optimistic/pessimitic view on things. Back home, I've been brought up in a more pessimitic environment I would say... with a lot of emphasis on "can't, never, impossible". Or questioning of my abilities "are you sure you can drive?" (ahaha, ok maybe my driving skills aren't top-knotch). :P When my grandma calls she asks "Ur mum is not in, right?" ... always found that amusing. And in general, there's a lot of frustration in society here, well with the bad traffic and dangerous driving.. can't blame us. Plus you often hear words like "jialat" , "die la" - local slangs for 'we're doomed'.

In Aussie-land, to my amazement (don't know if it applies elsewhere), the general public is rather optimistic. Words like "awesome, fantastic, fabulous, wonderful" are used all the time. And the salespeople & waiters / waitresses especially are in general very friendly... even made friends with a few of them. Even if they do not sincerely mean "that looks fantastic on you!" it still beats someone following you around the store with a sour-face thinking that you are trying to shoplift. When I was working there, I was always asked for my feedback on things that can be improved and my lecturer was concerned if I was "charging for all these hours". Wow, how appreciative!

Once again it's just my view on things based on my experiences..may not hold true for all situations. So yea, I'm trying to break out of this 'pessimistic' culture and adopt a more 'optimistic' culture :) It'd be good for health.

The happy gene

It really amazes me how some people can stay so bubbly and cheery all day, everyday. I've got several friends like that (lucky me)... and love hanging out with them coz it really rubs on to me. Met up with a friend I met last year at work, and the moment she got in the car, we were laughing already.. can't remember why even. Then it started to rain and we got some newspapers to run to the car, and were laughing at how ridiculous we looked. All I can remember was we were always laughing :D I love people like that and sometimes when you delve into deeper issues, u realize they are going through some rough patches in their lives too, but they are still so cheery that u totally can't tell at all.

I'd like to call it the "happy gene" :) They must be naturally born to be happy & bubbly to bring joy to the sometimes gloomy world we live in. It's great! I wouldn't mind meeting more of these people and perhaps discover their secret to being so bubbly all the time.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Isn't it ironic?

Isn't it ironic that sometimes the people that matter most to you tend to drift away and those whom u just met or re-establish contact with are the ones who are there for you when u least expect it?

Has closeness and familiarity become an excuse for some to get upset at the smaller things in life without regard to the big picture? Has closeness and familiarity become a reason to make someone unhappy just because you know they will always be there? Has closeness and familiarity allow someone to treat another unfairly just because..? Has it come to a point where it is actually risky to be close to someone?

My point is, take my analogy of a recently married couple arguing over their 'toothpaste habits'. One leaves the cap open after squeezing the toothpaste out from the tube, which the other despises.. and it breaks into a major argument. After all the heated debate and both refusing to succumb to each other's habits... do they realize it's just a bloody toothpaste?

Think about it.

Nothing beats family, seriously

Today I came to the realization that family is the best thing anyone can have in life. Perhaps being away from home for so long has made me forget about the wonders of my family. As much as my siblings enjoy teasing me or as much as I complain about my difference in opinion on house decor with my parents, when my whole world is crumbling down, I know who I can turn to and rely on 100%. After all, this is where I originated from.

Sometimes it takes absence to really make the heart grow fonder. I went shopping with my sis the whole day and it was awesome. What more could I ask for than honest opinions, beauty tips from my sis, knowing where to go to find stuff plus her risking her life with my rusty driving skills (I've not driven much in the past 4.5 years). Oh, plus her generosity since I'm not working yet. And when I didn't have dinner plans, my sis says I could join her and my parents bought me more food when I got back. Checked my email and got one from my brother who I've not seen for a few years now... so looking forward to finally catch up even though it's gonna be a short period. Can't wait to meet my other sis & family too, haven't seen my nephew since he was a month old. I guess my family need not be physically together but we all know and understand that if one member is down, we're all there for each other. After all, it's just a phone call, email or SMS away these days.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Girl, misunderstood

This blog space has become my area to vent my frustrations and feelings, which is kind of good in a way so that I don't go around banging my car into trees or doing something stupid like that. I am really bad with communication, which often brings me into deep deep trouble. I hate to be like this but I have to try awfully, awfully hard to talk about things that are very personal to me. I guess it's just my nature, like one of my closest friends say.. some of us who are more introverted just have a need to keep some things to ourselves, even to our closest family and friends. .. because we feel the need to maintain our personal space.

I should not generalize but I just feel that introverts often get misunderstood. As much as some people comment how much I can talk when I want to, I would honestly say I'm still very much introverted by nature. When someone is quiet, it does not mean that they are dull, boring and have no enthusiasm for life. In fact, some of the most interesting people I know are quiet in nature - there's more of a sense of mystery about them and if you would just talk to them, there's much they have to tell you and share. It's just not their nature to openly talk about their problems or be the center of attention in a crowd - it just isn't. Yes, sometimes I wish I could be the friendly person who can relate and talk to anyone at anytime - I have for many years tried to conquer my introvertness... but after trying so hard, I would say that I've made a huge effort but yet to a great extent, I can't change the nature of who I'm created to be.

So, please don't misunderstand introverts coz of their nature. Some may never understand how much effort it takes to just find some conversational topic to talk about, or giving that public presentation, teaching a class or finding the right words to communicate what is inside my complex nature. For those who can relate, I say thank you.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Inability to relax

I've got a strange syndrome it seems. I can't seem to relax and do nothing. My friends who are working hard in the corporate world think I'm crazy but it's true. I am rather incapable of sitting around watching TV or just reading a book for that matter. All these months of not really doing anything is driving me kinda mad. I need to create things for myself to do. I wouldn't mind travelling... love that, but not just sitting at home consuming all resources that come my way. Well, perhaps when I'm way too busy I'd regret what I am saying right now. Yet there are some people who have an amazing ability to sit around and do nothing... with no urgency to look for work. I've got a friend whose ambition is to be a beach bum. Aaahh.. I need to learn to unwind, * breathes in * *breathes out* ...relax :)