The Introvert Expat SAHM Diaries

Is It Too Early to Think of 2020 Goals?

Hello sexy people! ❀ πŸ™‚

It’s Friday morning over here in my sunny corner of the globe and I am reading a book about goal setting ~ why? Because I want to set and accomplish some goals in 2020. I want to look back on the year with the satisfaction that comes from having earned new “gold stars”. And I want to be deliberate about it.

Now just to backtrack, I’ve always been a goal setter. Even when I became a full time SAHM I continued to set goals, daily, weekly, monthly, you name it, I’d set a goal for it. ‘s Matter of fact, I had a big goal for 2019 … it didn’t make it past the front gate.

Most of my goals do not make it past the front gate 😦

I kinda dabble at it in the beginning and then I get distracted and blah, blah, blah, & fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la ….

I must hold myself to a higher standard, being a life coaching student & all that jazz!

So I have decided to devote the remaining months of 2019 to studying how to set goals. Because I’ve never really studied it.Β  I fish something interesting out of my head, buy a fancy whiteboard to write it on and hope that by placing it somewhere visible it will somehow get done.

Well, that strategy rarely, if ever, works for me. Obviously.

And it’s struck me that I am actually being flimsy with this powerful tool for life improvement.

So as I made this decision a few goals immediately started to materialize in my head (they’re like flies swarming about!). Now I’m trying to be choosy because I want these goals to actually mean something. The book I’m reading says that the stronger your emotions are around that goal, the better the outcome. So here they are so far –

A flat tummy by my birthday.

(Oh yes, I certainly have some strong emotions around this one!)

I want some tone in there, I don’t want it to bulge. I don’t need a 6-pack, I just want it flat.

Celebrate my birthday with my family at a nice resort in Bintan.

I have just very recently discovered that the next-door island to Batam (where I live), Bintan, is a paradise! I saw gorgeous pictures of luxury resorts and I’ve been itching ever since! There’s even a place that’s nominated to become a UNESCO world heritage site! Who needs Bali when it’s much farther & expensive?!!

So this is goal #2.

An online shop by July. Or within the 3rd Qtr. But the goal is July.

This was my 2019 goal but I did not even know what my product was going to be. Let alone the criteria for selecting said product – very important!

In fairness, I did experiment with a few options and learned quite a lot in the process ~ including the need to learn about goal-setting πŸ˜€

An outside hobby.

I do not want to stay cooped up at home anymore. I understand that most of my time will still be indoors with the adorable toddler but I want something that will bring me in contact with other adult human beings at least once a week. I can do once a week.

Notes on goal 2 & 4Β 

These sound more like to-do’s but these are sub-goals that I’ve broken down from a bigger, kinda nebulous goal which is to enjoy where I live.

An open slot for goal #5

I still lack 1 goal. I want to make it 5 because I am turning 45 next year and I just like to relate things and turn it into a fun game πŸ˜‰Β Β I’ll let you gorgeous people know as soon as I’ve finalized it πŸ™‚

 

~~ meanwhile, let me ask you πŸ™‚ ~~

Have you started to think about your own goals for next year already?

Do you enjoy setting goals?

What one new thing would you want to bring into your life next year?

πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‹

 

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Lifecoaching

Do You Need To Be A Chef In Order To Teach Someone How to Cook?

I and my 2 daughters have been taking turns being under the weather this past week so blogging has unfortunately been shoved in the background. So much for blogging 6 days a week :/

But I’m here today to share something with you that has galvanized me into taking a particular course of action.

I was listening to a podcast where a lifecoach was sharing her journey towards becoming a lifecoach. It totally blew my mind. Her story was remarkable in that it was so straightforward: she didn’t know what to do with her life so she moved to another country and once there decided to be a lifecoach.

What?

She did not know what to do with her life so she became a lifecoach. She was confused about life so she got certified to help other people with their own confusions.

This got me thinking. And wondering. (Don’t you need more than that? More personal success perhaps?)

Anyway here’s the thing … after hearing this podcast, I decided to enroll in a lifecoaching course myself. Dan-dan-daaaaaannnnn … Because, why not? If you’ve read my previous post and if a lady who did not know what to do with her life can become a lifecoach then I think I can too. I’ve certainly learned a lot from the “trials and tribulations” I have gone through these past (almost) 4 years as an unwilling (but appreciative) expat.

But this is not about feeling envious or anything but that this interview really did get me curious and gave me the motivation to enroll. I don’t know if I want to become a practicing lifecoach eventually but I certainly see myself helping friends [who want to be helped] at an informal/personal level.

At the very least I am in it for the additional/deeper personal transformation, on top of whatever personal transformations I have already experienced contemplating these rowdy, garbage-bin ransacking macaque monkeys of Kota Batam, Indonesia.

I’ll keep you up to date πŸ˜‰

Have a beautiful weekend y’all ❀

Staying Sane

Q&A Friday πŸ˜€

 

It’s been a while since I’ve had some sort of Q&A fun on this blog and I miss it. I always have fun answering those simple, get-to-know-yourself questions or self-reflection prompts and I bet many of you do too.

Hmmm, might even make it a regular Friday feature. (Or every other Friday? πŸ€”) Oh well, let’s just play it by ear because when you’re taking care of a tiny human, unpredictable‘s the word πŸ€ͺ

So lemme start with this week’s prompt — join me in the comments section, ok? πŸ˜€

Have you done anything [a bit] out of character lately? What was it and why.

My answer to this is a “yes”. And it was sharing my goals for next year with my friends. Why? Because I realized I needed “cheerleaders”.

~ oOo ~

I recently opened an Instagram account because I’m intending to sell my crochet/knitting next year. There are already a few posts of my creations on there and, of course, none of me [because it’s pure business]. I wasn’t planning on telling my friends about it because I’m afraid of what they might think (silly, right? 🀭). But when we had a group chat earlier this week I went ahead and announced it, even asked them to like every post and follow me 😁

Originally I thought I could just tell casual acquaintances about my IG and let it grow organically, and then (maybe) tell my friends about it much later. I’ve always been like this. I don’t mean to be secretive, just that I don’t want attention at the start of something, when everything is “iffy”.

But lately I had a thought where I realized perhaps thinking this way is unfair. Perhaps in doing so I was instead cheating myself out of “cheerleaders”. And perhaps what I needed to think was that if any of them should think negatively, for me to not let it deter me.

I then thought back to times in my life when I had done something without talking to friends about it, and I realized a few wrong moves could have been avoided had I just done so.

To be totally honest with you, there was a full minute-and-a-half of internal struggle going on in my head before I finally told my friends about my IG. And right after that I went “whatdidIdowhatdidIdowhatdidIdooooo???“.Β  But now, I’m relaxed and feeling emboldened. Like, okay, now to give them a grrrrreat show! 😎

~ oOo ~

And that’s me. How about you? Fire up my comments section right away! πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡ I’ll be waiting πŸ™‚

Monthly Reviews & Blog Updates

Lessons from 2017

baby-buddha-funny-deep-quotes

A friend from home recently told me she was feeling depressed. She was doing an end-of-year review and was feeling morose about the year that wasΒ πŸ˜• Which got me thinking about my own experience of 2017 ~~ hmmm, certainly not bad and definitely with a big bang 😁❀️

The good thing about having a blog is that it makes a year-end review quite easy. Even if you didn’t blog everything, the posts will be enough to jog your memory. So here are my take-aways from 2017 (in no particular order):

1.Β  Man plans, God laughs.

2.Β  Create happiness within your own 4 walls.

This applies to everyone but is especially true for expat SAHMs.

3.Β  Happy people are good people. Good people are not always happy.

4.Β  Community (really) matters.

And I’m talking about the village of support you create for yourself in the shape of friends, neighbors, your go-to hairstylist, even your favorite book store. Let’s just say this is one thing I didn’t know I missed until it was gone. Unfortunately, I still have to find a way to fix this (if there is one!).

5.Β  Never under-estimate the power of retail therapy on not-so-busy weeknights (or wherever the malls are open till 9 or 10 PM).

Much lesser people makes the whole process unhurried and, actually pleasant.

6.Β  Schedule a real change of scenery from time to time. (As in, anywhere but on this island)

Short reason: so that problems don’t seem larger than they are.

Long reason: otherwise idyllic, the sleepy atmosphere of this place (that permeates everything) can drive me nuts at times 😏

7. Dress and make yourself up for the day, even when you’re just staying home.

This includes taking a shower before 10AM otherwise, good luck with the humidity! πŸ˜„

8. Let the breadwinner earn bread the way he wants.

Everyone is just happier that way.

9. Have fun marking the passage of time.

Set goals, take on projects, schedule stuff in your calendar to look forward to, and then blog about it.

99.9% effective against the doldrums 😁

10. Break it down into bite-sized chunks.

Absolutely golden advice.

11.Β  Never run out of Re-Mag & Re-Myte supplements.

I didn’t blog about this but this has to have a spot on this list because the difference it makes is just too obvious to ignore. I have more energy, I sleep better, I am in a pleasant mood, I have better cognitive function, I even have more breast milk. When I was pregnant, I would experience those pregnancy-related swollen feet & ankles whenever I did not take these supplements.

12. Everything looks better arranged on a tray.Β 

(I absolutely love this one!)Β  I mean, seriously! Just give it a try! πŸ‘πŸ‘

πŸ’ƒπŸ’ƒπŸ’ƒ

What about you? What are some of the lessons you learned in 2017? Let me know in the comments section, bet I can learn from you too πŸ˜ƒ ❀️

Books

November Read: One Small Step Can Change Your Life

KaizenOne of the perks of being a Kindle owner is being able to download free ebooks. (I think this is where Amazon puts new and aspiring authors to test the waters, you know, before they charge for their book … But I’m just taking a wild guess here 😁).Β 

Anyhow, I’ve downloaded quite a few free ebooks in the past and find that most of them should [perhaps] just remain free. I don’t say this to be mean, I know writing takes a lot of work but, there’s something to be said for quality and talent (or real good editors & proofreaders). I just think that quality and talent deserve distinction, price be one of them.

I digress because I can’t imagine this book, authored by Clinical Psychologist Robert Maurer, would stay free for very long*. It is well-written and well-organized. I wasn’t distracted by errors in grammar and composition (which I sadly often find even in books that aren’t free), and the thought process represented by the chapters flows logically and smoothly.

But good grammar and composition is definitely not all this book has to offer. The content itself, while not something novel or ground-breaking, is gold.

“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step” ~ Tao Te Ching

Kaizen, a Japanese business philosophy of continuous improvement, is very familiar in the field of work.Β  Kaizen advocates using very small steps to improve a habit, a process or product using very small moments to inspire new products and inventions. Because it is so identified with efficiency at work, it just totally escaped me that Kaizen could also be applied to your personal and daily life.Β  (Yes, I’m looking at you flabby, post-baby body! 😠).

“Confront the difficult while it is still easy; accomplish the great task by a series of small acts.” ~ Tao Te Ching

Chances are, there’s something in your life that you want to change or improve but have been dithering on.Β  According to the author:Β  “All changes, even positive ones, are scary. Attempts to reach goals through radical or revolutionary means often fail because they heighten fear.Β  But the small steps of kaizen disarm the brain’s fear response, stimulating rational thought and creative play.”

The key idea here is how fear (of change/improvement) can be conquered by something small. The book helps the reader explore how small can be very potent through chapters on asking small questions, thinking small thoughts, taking small actions, solving small problems, bestowing small rewards, and identifying small moments.

Even problems such as pessimism can be subdued by the question: What is one thing about me (or my spouse, or my place of work) that is special?

The book ends with the chapter “Kaizen for Life”Β  and encourages the reader to hold on to the essence of Kaizen, which is an optimistic belief in our potential for continuous improvement.

Like earlier mentioned this book was an easy yet stimulating read. I love books that give pragmatic and sound advice, more so this one where the recommendations do not involve drastic actions or shelling out money. I highly recommend this πŸ™‚

In ending I’d like to share with you one of the phrases that I highlighted and which is, I think, my favorite in the entire book:

If you spend a minute or two each day writing a kind note to tuck into a loved one’s briefcase or a child’s lunchbox, you may save yourself the headache that comesΒ  when relationships grow cool from a lack of nurturance and daily care”.

Now excuse me, I gotta go give my eldest a hug πŸ™‚

 

‘* as of this blogpost, the Kindle edition is now priced at $7.23 … aww, drats! 😢