Day30: What is Success To You

what is successWhat is success?

It’s different for everybody.

There’s this old familiar brazilian story:

There was once a businessman who was sitting by the beach in a small Brazilian village.
As he sat, he saw a Brazilian fisherman rowing a small boat towards the shore having caught quite few big fish.
The businessman was impressed and asked the fisherman, “How long does it take you to catch so many fish?”
The fisherman replied, “Oh, just a short while.”
“Then why don’t you stay longer at sea and catch even more?” The businessman was astonished.
“This is enough to feed my whole family,” the fisherman said.
The businessman then asked, “So, what do you do for the rest of the day?”
The fisherman replied, “Well, I usually wake up early in the morning, go out to sea and catch a few fish, then go back and play with my kids. In the afternoon, I take a nap with my wife, and evening comes, I join my buddies in the village for a drink — we play guitar, sing and dance throughout the night.”

The businessman offered a suggestion to the fisherman.
“I am a PhD in business management. I could help you to become a more successful person. From now on, you should spend more time at sea and try to catch as many fish as possible. When you have saved enough money, you could buy a bigger boat and catch even more fish. Soon you will be able to afford to buy more boats, set up your own company, your own production plant for canned food and distribution network. By then, you will have moved out of this village and to Sao Paulo, where you can set up HQ to manage your other branches.”

The fisherman continues, “And after that?”
The businessman laughs heartily, “After that, you can live like a king in your own house, and when the time is right, you can go public and float your shares in the Stock Exchange, and you will be rich.”
The fisherman asks, “And after that?”
The businessman says, “After that, you can finally retire, you can move to a house by the fishing village, wake up early in the morning, catch a few fish, then return home to play with kids, have a nice afternoon nap with your wife, and when evening comes, you can join your buddies for a drink, play the guitar, sing and dance throughout the night!”
The fisherman was puzzled, “Isn’t that what I am doing now?”

Many have lost time, happiness with their families in the pursuit of happiness. You see, some have equated that success is the key to happiness. But it’s the other way around. Being happy is the key to success. What more joy can you get spending time with family and loved ones?

IN the last 30 days, I have outlined MY definition of ways to get to be successful. I look through all the days to see if I am still on track. Success is NOT a destination. It is a process. It is being the BEST that you can be, everyday!

It is being a value to somebody. It is adding value to somebody. It is making someone’s dream come to fruition.

We become the authors of our destiny. A destiny to reign in life. We become a tool in God’s hand.

Your attitude towards people determine your path. Your attitude to failure determines your path.

“Determine Success on your own terms, achieve it by your own rules, and build a life you are proud to live”- Anne Sweeney

Day 29: Just being there

I went to Ryan’s performance today. He was visibly excited, and has been making sure for the past few days that we made it to his performance..We were caught by surprise that he performed not one but two. What was even more weird is that one of the songs he performed to was called “Starjump”..what?wait… I am sure the teacher knows his condition,and here i was thinking that will be a challenge for him..Fact is he can’t jump..i know he moves well to Gangam style, but this , i was thinking for him of course, would be a challenge..or so I thought.

But he was there..not shy,and he knows everyone was watching him..all he needed was us to be proud of him..and that we were..You must be thinking, oh here is Anil, trying to say that we were all there for Ryan. True, i saw a couple of kids looking into the audience, to see if the parents were there. Could see a little disappointment in their eyes.

But what I learnt from Ryan today is, despite your perceived inability , you JUST BE THERE. Be there for your parents, for your teacher, for your friends,for the school

How is success being played here? Being there for someone who is struggling, being there for your friend who just started a new career, being there to bring happiness for someone is a physical act. Not just in thoughts or prayers. Sure, it’s a good thing to have thoughts and prayers but ask any of these people, and they will tell you, just you being there helped them.

Just being there for someone to be successful, is success itself.

Oh, and parents,be there for your kids. It is a privilege. It doesn’t matter if your kids is in the top class,or position, oe a minor role in a play..just being there builds a child in so many ways you just cannot fathom.

Day 28: Asking for help

asking helpI went to pick up my son today and i spotted my neighbour who stays few floors below, waiting for cab with the family. He was traveling with his family,what appears to be going to the airport as they had luggage with them. Picked up  my son, and as i was coming back 15 minutes later,they were still there.

I parked my car as i saw the 3 members of the family strategically placing themselves at various points,hoping to catch a cab. As i was passing the husband, i asked him if he had trouble finding a first he ignored me, probably thinking i was talking to myself. I then asked again. This time he said “yaa,not easy to take cab” with a little exasperation. I then offered a ride. Afteralll it’s just 10 minutes from our place. He said, “No issues, the cab should be here any moment”, as he made a call for taxi company. Again, I offered, telling him I’ll be a quick 2 minutes to drop my son at home and be back. He said a polite no.

I also wondered if I would have said NO, if the situation was reversed. What if I miss the flight? Then again, we are almost total strangers. But we both know that we stay in the same block, and an occasional nod if we bump to each other. But in a point of desperation, would the answer be still NO?

Is it ok to ask for help if you ever need it? I hear that ego always determine whether you can ask for direction if you are lost. I ask for them almost all the time, because my sense of direction is always warped. But i guess to ask for help, we always tend to “feel” for the other person. What if we are inconveniencing them? Without even checking, we make that assumption. As in the case mentioned above. My neighbour must be thinking the same. But I made a genuine offer, and that too without him asking. I am still thinking if he got the cab in time. I am wondering if he got to the flight in time. Alas he could have avoided my concerns if he had just accepted my help. We could have been friends…

But wait, what has this got to do with success? Ask any successful person, if he needed any help to take each rung of the success ladder..i keep hearing “I am a self-made man.” The truth is, no one is a self made man. It is as good as saying, the universe made itself one fine day. A successful man has help all the way to the top. A true successful man never forgets that!

Day 27: The Art of Giving

instaquote-_temp instaquote-_temp#1Teach your kids the Art of giving.. I tell my kids that in order to receive you must give first..empty your hands,empty your pockets..give freely,without a thought…if you are holding something in your hand, then how would you receive then..i teach them that metaphor that in order to feel happiness, you are only able do that when you see that happiness in someone else.

It can be money, it can be material goods..but the most priceless gift you can give to anybody, is your time…Gift a giving attitude, so that you can leave a legacy..That’s what Mother Theresa did…That is a mark of a person with great success!

Day 26: Laugh at yourself

william-arthur-ward-writer-quote-to-make-mistakes-is-human-to-stumble There is this fracas created by this youtube person called Anna.. Gist of it is that she makes fun of Indians, particularly indian girls for their fashion sense, or language, or accent. Basically anything that invokes a laughter, at the expense of the Indian girls.

Latest one got the indian girls so riled up, that they went full force against her. Anna, in turn, came out with a video on cyber-bullying.

First of all, if you dare to make fun of a particular race or creed, be prepared for the onslaught of grave remarks spewed on your goodself. Afterall, you did go public with your insinuations.

I watched the videos of her applying makeup that was an over-exaggeration.She kinda made a general statement that all indian girls, especially those appearing in vasantham channel. To a certain extent, that is true. But that’s a given, since under the harsh lights, a certain “amount” of makeup is needed to compensate the harsh lighting, and it even goes for the guys.


Having said that, my common sense says that since I’m a public person, i must be sensitive to people’s feelings. It means I need to judge if the person is matured enough to listen to jokes about that person, or race or creed.

Let’s take a local celebrity Kumar. His self-deprecating jokes about his “indianess”, and Singaporeans in general, is well received. His jokes can be very harsh, but still can be seen touching raw nerves. But does he care? No! Infact he’s being paid for it, and those who pay to see him knows what’s coming to them, race-wise deprecating humour.

Thus, the disclaimer that only “mature” audience can watch him. Likewise for Russell Peters. He started off when someone videotaped him of making offending remarks about ALL races, and long story short, he became an overnight sensation. Many people don’t realise that Anna’s offending remarks have earned her so many hits overnight, that if her channel is monetised, she would be making money. She will have the last laugh, probably all the way to the bank.

If you do get offended, then don’t watch. It only means that you don’t have that maturity to laugh at yourself,but that’s ok. You will need time to get evolved.  When is careful observations on people,made into humour, become offensive?If they are the truth, then it should set you free.

Laugh, at yourself,and see how you have grown. Being myopic, will not set your sights very far .

Day 25: Make Love

keepcalmI attended a seminar over the weekend,conducted by this guru Joel Bauer, who trained other gurus like Tony Robbins and T.Harv Eker. One of the things he taught us is to have a dream card, that list your relationship, environment,passion,wealth and health as goal settings. So under the relationship i wrote as “spending quality time with my kids and go to a nice restaurant once a week, and make love to my wife 3 times a week..i made a mistake sharing this with my pals who attended with me, and they all laughed.

You see, at my age, that is a feat! you need one day rest day in between so you can “perform” better the next day. But it’s not the act that matters, but the duration of that. As we age, we tend to “linger” a little more then when we are in our twenties. We must learn to enjoy the moment and not rush the time..make love with your food as well..take time to enjoy every morsel that comes into your mouth. Gobbling down food is not the way , and if you want to lose weight, then take in your food…slowly.

Make love with nature..breathe in the fresh air in the morning..walk through the morning grass filled with dew on your bare feet..smell the fresh rain falling on the earth..Keep the passion going


Day24: Create Dominance and not Obscurity

dominanceIn my 2nd year into my real estate career, I had a friend of mine telling me that he just sold his house. I was aghast,not  because he sold without telling me. He didn’t know that I was in Real estate!

I then realised that I wasn’t “shouting” enough of what I can do or offer. I thought that being “humble” about being a top rookie in my 1st year in business wasn’t enough. I had to shout it out. I had to blow my own trumpet.It wasn’t being about humble anymore. It’s creating business…

You see, prominence is what brings you business. And dominance is what that gets your business. When the market is bad, everyone tries to grab every single pie in the market. If you have been obscure all this while, it will be to at an utmost guarantee that you can drop out of the market. If you do not use tools like blogging, Facebook or twitter to be dominant in the space given to you, then it’s a slow death in your business.

I had at least 4 deals that came through facebook. They are not total strangers, but they are friends of friends. Everybody watches you on Facebook. You may not have many likes on your posts or pictures, but you can be sure that people are watching you. People assess you all the time,and one way is the social media. The awards you show off is to show you have a certain credibility, your clients testimony attest to your work ethics and what you say on the web makes a direct connection to who you really are.

Create that dominance in the industry you are in. Let people know who you really are

Day 23 Be Enthusiatic

Enthusiasm is like a catches on like wild brings out the smile and the energy in others. So when you are doing any work, as in the video, show that enthusiasm. People actually queue to see this mere shopkeeper doing what he does best. I mean, he tuens a normal menial job into something fantastic. People ought to wonder what makes this guy tick! That’s what successful people do..get people to wonder what makes you so enthused in your work, in whatever you do

Day 22 Stop Fearing

litany-of-fear-fixedIf Complaint is Worry’s cousin, then it’s evil twin is FEAR. Fear is death itself..a slow death..Fear comes in many forms. It can prevent death, or become death itself. It’s multiple personalities can come in different forms, but it can drain your spirit. Worry and Fear are the  two biggest sins according to God. It shows you don’t trust God. Fear keeps you away from your dreams. Past failures can develop a fear that will not make you move forward. Fear can envelop your talents and skills into nothing. Fear is the false evidence appearing real. It does not exist at all,but in the find

Successful people conquer their fears, head on. What that won’t kill them,only make them stronger . They replace fear, with curiosity.

Day 21 Stop Complaining

complainA close cousin to worry, is complain. It’s also Singapore’s favourite pastime(just kidding of course)! Complaining, also does not get you anywhere. We stop to think of all the blessings you have, and start focussing on the negatives..some we can change the situation, by just changing your mindset. Some we can’t change, so we make do. Complaining is a sign of weakness,but not necessarily define a person. Nevertheless, if not kept in check, it will  degrade your mind and personality. Afterall, no one likes a “complainer”

Successful people tend to complain a lot less, as they are problem solvers. They find solutions, or they live with it. Either way they look at things positively. Stop complaining,start living