Random thoughts in a busy life

Sunday, January 04, 2009

Happy New Year

Finally 2009 arrives. In the last few days, I spent quite sometime to figure out my progress in 08 and what should I plan to achieve in 09.

Let's review 08 first.

  • Financially I am doing OK for 08. Although I could do better. The whole market is down about 40% and I am the same.
  • I did not make much progress about my addiction. That is the single most influential thing in my life which I would like to fix.
  • Career-wise I made some progress but still need a lot of energy and attention
  • Part-time job or venture does not work well for 08. And it is time to re-consider these for 09.
  • Family life is not good, but it is not bad either.
  • Face some health related issues, and that is something I should work on for 09.
Ok, it is time to look forward to 09.
  • Stick to the investment plan and make sure all the investment goals are met.
  • Tame the addiction and reduce the frequency at least.
  • Stick with the career path and rise to the top of your potential.
  • Keep an eye on the family life and stay calm, stay focus and stay cool. Do not expect much from it though
  • Take a fresh look at part-time job and ventures. It is time to find your passion and your potential.
  • It is time to stay healthy and fix whatever issues I have.
  • Keep on reading books and expand your knowledge.
2009 is a new start for me. I am reading Dan Miller's book, "No More Mondays" and I feel I am inspired by it. I believe things will be getting better and better for me.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Returned from Xi'an

I had a real vacation back to China last week. When I mean real vacation, I went back to Xi'an along and spent 4.5 days without worrying about anything in the world. That is a real vacation, the last time I did this was about 6 years ago when I visited BJ.

Before writing this post, I read my previous post since it is a major post for me after a few years of absence. I think I should update all these points accordingly:

  • One of the key person in my group moved out. Maybe he is bored and would like to try something new. Maybe he feels the ceiling in our group. Anyhow that gives me the perfect opportunity to succeed his role and make myself the most influential person in our group. I talked to my manager right after I came back from vacation. It is time to carry out my career plan and seize the opportunity within this company. I should focus on my work and spend as much time and energy on it to make sure I will be the person in charge.
  • Nothing much changed for personal life. I decided not to give her the answer she needs if the interview schedule arrives. Let's see what will happen afterwards.
  • I still cough and feel shortness breath sometime. That is really not a good sign. I should be more careful about this.
  • The recent market turmoil gives a strong buy signal. I should be disciplined to invest more in this environment. That is what I plan to do in the next few months and years. I have a feeling that the market will bounce back in a few years and now is the best time to put more money in the market.
  • Xi'an vacation tells me something important. If you have enough money, you can do a lot of things differently. That is my goal.
Until next time.

Sunday, September 21, 2008


It is time to re-evaluate everything.

From career, personal life, investment to the future, pretty much everything needs re-evaluation. I have put this off for too long. Now it is the time.

First thing first, let's talk about work, career. I am approaching 40 years mark. That is a milestone for me. I should be able to achieve something and make my career path clear before I hit this milestone. Before 30 years mark, I am still exploring with different environments, different companies. That is explainable. But from year 30 to 40, I should be able to find myself a path. If there is something worth trying, then it is time to try it out. There are only 3 years time left before I hit this mark, 3 years, or 1000 days, to be exactly. I have 1000 days to figure out what I want to be in the rest of my life time.

Good thing is that I finally have a manager in my title, Technical Project Manager. But in reality, there is nothing special about it. I do not think my salary will increase anyhow in the near future unless I have re-defined my role and involvement in the company. In the next one year or half, things will be changed rapidly in my company. So besides doing my job well and very well, I should do the followings:

  • Prepare for the unseen. Update the resume and polish it. Prepare to look for new opportunities.
  • Pay special attention to the Chinese market development. If there is opportunity, volunteer to go back to China to establish this market.
  • Take control of your project and your team and make sure your position in the team is solid.
It is still too early to tell what will exactly happen in one year. But it does not matter that much if I can prepare myself for everything.

In this tough world, if I do not have a good job, nothing else can be realized. So that is my first and top priority.

Secondly, let's talk about life, or personal life or married life. Things are in a mess right now. Or at least that is what I feel about it. I am not sure where this will eventually lead to but frankly I do not care much about it anyway.

After filing for divorce and struggle for about 2 years, the case is withdrawn. But that does not mean our relationship is improved. I hope to show her some of my kindness by helping her with the GC application. But as the matter of fact, she is not showing much kindness to me as the return. Sometime I am not sure whether I am pushing her over the fine line. I am in a dilemma, if she does cross the line, then I can still cancel the GC. But if she does not, there is no guarantee that she will not cross the line in the future. The only one I care about is my son, I hope he can grow up to be a happy and normal kid. I do not want to impact his life with my selfish decisions.

Recent visit to Xi'an confirmed the popular saying about China. And I understand and feel why so many people want to go back to China after they have established themselves in the states. And as one of my ultimate goal, I am thinking about chances to go back to China seriously. If there is such opportunity, I will go for it no matter what she thinks.

We are not a normal married couple. We do not eat together, we do not sleep together, and we do not have much talk together either. And I do not think the normal marriage life should look like this. If this is not fixable, sooner or later, our marriage will break apart. And I am ready for that.

After return from Xi'an, my mode cannot be adjusted back. My feeling is getting stronger and stronger about Xi'an. That is the emotional part. Reality is that I should focus on my career and look for opportunities to go back. Maybe I am thirsty for love for so long. I am not sure.

Third thing is about personal health. Recently I feel bad about my health. Most of the time in the morning after wake up, I feel shortness in breath and chest congestion. Originally I thought it was either cold or something to do with smoking. I have smoked 10 packs of cigareets in 3 months time frame. That is definitely too much smoke for me. As I am approaching the 40 years mark, I should look after myself more and more. Remember I still have long life left to run.

Now the fourth thing, investment, finance, real-estate. All these things are related. I do not think in the near future, I will purchase any real-estate in the states. I just have too much burden on my shoulders. That is also the reason I am considering real-estate in SH market. It can be my living place if I go back to China in the near future, and it can be a good time to start investing in SH housing market since it was down quite much in the last time.

As of investment, I do not think I have put as much money as I like into either stock market or IRA. I should plan these aggressively since I do not need money short time for the housing. If she really get the labor card, I will not wait for more than 2 months before spliting the living expense in half. We will see.

Some final thoughts about time management. Compared with 1 or 2 years back when my son is small, I have much more time now in my hands. That does not mean I have sufficient time to play online games, watch TV drama series, or browse Internet endlessly. It is really the time to think hard about your 1000 days plan and try your best to achieve it.

Calm down, this is not the end of the world. Although sometime I do feel that I lost my destination, but it is time to regroup and refocus.


Sunday, August 14, 2005

plan, objective and self-management

I turned on the music and put on the headset. Every single note flew into my heart... What a wonderful experience! I have not got chance and time to listen to music for a long long time.

My baby was born on April 22. I was busy as crazy. Almost everything was changed after he was born. Recent changes in my work. It is a crazy ride.

Busy I can handle it. I remember one of my friend's wife said one thing sometime back. She said it does not matter much how much load you have in your time. You will survive it OK. What really kills you if your mode or your feeling or your inner self. If your inner self is not happy, then sooner or later you will feel the pain.

I really can feel her words. So that is the reason that I should learn to cope with my mode and my feelings.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

4E and 1P from Jack Welch

Today I read one book from Jack Welch, the legendary CEO of GE. He mentioned his formula to pick up candidates from the list.

That is 4E and 1P.

* Energy towards your work
* Energize your co-worker or your team member
* Edge, learn to react and make decision quick
* Execute. Carry on with your plan and execute
* Passion. Carry passion about your work and your career.

That is very interesting advice as I am in the process of changing my job/career. I am no longer a fresh graduate out of college. I need to take time to think about my career path and future more seriously. I cannot be a software developer for the rest of my life.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Take one bite at a time

Recently I am preparing for a career move. I went through quite a few interviews. There are quite a few on-site interviews. But the result is not that promising. So I started wondering whether I am sellable at current market. After sometime I realize that it is the time for me to work on my current skill sets.

The next question is whick skill set comes first?

Take one bite at a time. That is the advice I got from one job searching website. Basically you should focus on the near term objectives. Finish them one by one, then by no time you will reach your final goal. Of course, your new term objective should contribute to your long time objective.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Don't die wondering...

This is the motto from Alicia Molik, the Australian open Quarter finalist. She defeated Venus Williams but lost to Davenport in the Semi.

I like this motto very much. It clearly states her attitude. I should have this attitude as well if I really really really want to try something and succeed.