Yesterday was my day off, and I have a whole lot of plans to do, House to clean, bills to pay, Harry Potter to read. I spend almost my whole day doing 2 out of 3. I bet you know which one I ignore. Yes.. House cleaning.

I know no one is going to clean the house if not me. And I know sooner or later, I will be the one who will do it. In the end, I started cleaning my house at around 10.00pm and I’m supposed to go to bed at around 1.00 am. This is a real example of procrastination.

Basically we all know procrastination. It is when we skip one task (which is usually the most important and not fun) to do another task (which is more fun) or not doing any task at all (which is super fun hehe). And it has been illustrated in almost all self-help book on how to overcome it; the whole to-do list, prioritize etc.

I am not going to reinvent the wheel and elaborate on that. I am more interested on how we, the real people, handle it. This is what I did –

  • Smaller But Frequent Rewards – After every 5 pages of Harry Potter I read, I will get up and do 2 small things; wash the dishes and take out the garbage.
  • Procrastinate Consciously – Sometimes when I really hate the task, and it is not that important. I choose to procrastinate conciously. For example, I have to prepare monthly maintenance report, which is very tedious. My mind go blank already with no mood what so ever to do it. I know for sure that if I force myself doing it, the report will be badly written and I may have to do it again. In that case, I usually decide to procrastinate without any guilt, and play that damn addictive “pikacu” game my wife introduced me. Later, I found out that I am able to do the report effectively for about 15 minutes before I’m out of mood again. At least 15 minutes of work done right?
  • Lie to Self – Working under pressure sometimes do give me a bit motivation to overcome procrastinate. Usually I just lie to myself saying that in 2 hours my manager will be coming for tea at my house. I repeatedly convince myself that that will happen. And then you can see I work at 110% efficiency.

I still believe procrastinate is a bad attitude to have. But it will always be there. And sometimes it wins.

So do you guys have any secret way to tackle procrastination? motivate yourself to do things you dont like?

————— Personal Note ————————–
My worst case of procrastination is when I was studying in the university. I need to submit all my reports the next day, and I still had to do 14 weekly reports all in one night. The pressure that night was so overwhelming that I even thought that this might be how people who commit suicide feels like. Not that I have that idea. I finished all the reports in time, but the lecturer failed me. That was one lesson I will remember for the rest of my life.

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Craziness Around Us

Summary – Defining craziness
Thinking back, luckily the incident in the previous post involved drunk. It would be a different case altogether if it involved crazy people.

Today’s post is dedicated to define the word “crazy”. I’m not referring to the people who talks to himself, or those in the Hospital Bahagia. I am actually more interested in the crazy things we, normal people, do everyday.

The best definition of “crazy” in my opinion is “To do the same thing but expecting different results from it“.

One good example to illustrate is hoping to wake up at 6 am when we sleep very late in the morning, obviously we will be late to work, waking up at 7am. Tomorrow.. we do it again, going to bed very late, and we expect to wake up at 6am? That is just crazy.

I guess, we always hope that luck will be on our side once in a while. Doing the same thing, and maybe with luck.. we get up at 6am.

The thing is, depending on luck is a very inefficient way of doing things. When you want to wake up at 6am, you must try sleeping a bit earlier. If that still doesn’t work, maybe you can get a louder alarm clock. or ask someone who do wake up at 6am and wake you up.

The same goes to other things in life

  • Relationship – you irritate your girlfriend when you smoke, and you don’t want to. just quit smoking.. don’t expect your girlfriend by luck will change and accept it
  • Health – you gain weight and you want to lose some. you must then control your diet and exercise. There is no way you can lose weight if you doesn’t change anything in your lifestyle.
  • Material – your computer always hang when you swith it on and you wish this wouldn’t happen. Send the computer for repair. The problem will always be there if you didn’t do anything.

Imagine those who gamble at Genting with no particular strategy to win, spending hundreds on their luck. Repeating the same methods of throwing dice, expecting to win. Don’t you think that’s crazy? Or maybe you can share other craziness happening everyday in front of you?

————— Personal Note ————————–
I have had the opportunity to go inside the Genting Casino one time I went there for a seminar. No I dont gamble. I will never bank in my hard-earned money there. I just went there to see what’s it like. And from the way I see it, psychologist will make a fortune there 🙂

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This is a true story and it happened yesterday (20/6), I’ve had a new experience in my line of work. I was working as always when suddenly one worker came running to me saying that there is a drunk tractor driver chasing other workers with a “parang”. I immediately called the security guard and believe it or not, he said he wouldn’t dare to go to a drunk running amok with a “parang”. I am quite angry at the time, because who will go and calm the person if the security doesn’t dare. What if somebody got hurt?

I am not that brave also, but I take a deep breath and “tawakal” to Allah. I asked three of my other workers and we went to the driver’s place. . There I saw him alone, no “parang” what so ever.

“Fuuh! lega!”. Immediately after he saw us, he get upset and start cursing. I asked all those with me to remain quiet and just stand by if he attacked or anything. I slowly approached him and I tried my best to maintain that innocent look of not knowing what happened. I asked him to start from the beginning. After a lot of cursing and incoherent words… he explained to me what’s the problem.

I guess his thought became more organized to properly explain to me and thus he started to calm down. I was agreeing with everything he said and promised him to settle his problem myself.

FYI – he is a contractual tractor driver taking the waste of the mill out. He is not employed by the mill but by nearby estates. And he was paid by amount of load he can do everyday. The more he can load out, the more money he get. To load the waste will require mill’s shovel, which was not available at the tme. That’s why he’s angry.

Of course in order for me to help him, I insist he must surrender the “parang”. Everything’s settled. When I walked back I can see him laughing, maybe because he think I will now do what ever he wants. Obviously I then called his manager and banned him from entering the mill compound ever again. Oh ya, no one’s was hurt fortunately.

Lesson learnt –

  • My security need to sit down and come up with proper plan for all emergency. Luckily this is just a drunk case, where I can still reason with him. If it were a crazy person who just want to kill others, the workers will be all dead before police came.
  • I need to sit down and come up with my proper plan for all emergency. The problem with emergency is that it usually happen when you lease expected and if you panic, things will only just get worse. Hm do you guys ever plan what to do in emergency? like your bus toppled or burglar inside the house? I think I should..

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Old Man

There was a man at Bukit Kayu Hitam (The border of Thailand and Malaysia). We will call him Nasir (from “pasir”). He was seen to cross the border to and fro everyday riding a bicycle with two sacks of sands.

One day, a custom officer, who we will call Faisal (From “officer”), noticed Nasir carrying the sack from Thailand into Malaysia. He immediately stopped Nasir and asked him what’s inside the sack. Nasir said, “it’s just sand, sir.” Faisal did not believe him. Who would waste time carrying in sands like that. There must be rice or illegal things inside. Faisal then smashed the sacks of sands onto the road and found that Nasir was telling him the truth. There were just sands. Nasir then slowly gathered what remains from the sands and filled it back into the smashed sacks.

The next day, Faisal, the immigration officer, stopped him again, and did the same thing, expecting he might soon catch Nasir smuggling rice, or drugs into Malaysia. But there were nothing else inside the sacks but sands. Faisal started to feel sorry for the old man. And Nasir continued bringing the sacks into Malaysia everyday for 2 years straight. Of course Faisal did spot check from time to time but to no avail.

After the two years, Nasir had stopped crossing the border. And one day during breakfast Faisal met his old friend, Nasir at the coffee shop looking quite wealthy and very different from two years back. After a long chit chat, Faisal asked Nasir.. “Now tell me the truth, why do you brought in sands from Thailand to here? What do you actually do for a living?”

Nasir said : “I smuggled bicycle”

(Source – Forwarded joke rewritten from memory)

Lesson learnt

  • We often see the world expecting everything will be familiar and easily understandable. We prefer not to challenge our mind looking from another perspective. For example, we look at a thin man with red eye, immediately we label him as a drug addict. He might just be Bill Gates trying out contact lense. Who knows? 🙂
  • Next time, we see anything. traffic jam, beloved parents, even jokes like the above, maybe we can try looking it from another point of view.
  • “Gajah depan mata tak nampak, Kuman seberang laut nampak pulak”

————— Personal Note ————————–
I don’t actually recall my first time riding a bicycle. But I remember exactly how my brother first learn to ride the bicycle. Our father forced him to learn, and in doing so, he injured himself falling. (Not to say injured, but fall down la :p). So one night, he actually took a knife to tear the bicycle tyre. I’m not so sure whether he succeeded or not, but the amazing thing is… the very
next day was the day he finally able to ride the bicycle. 🙂 So guys, how did you learn to ride bicycle?

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