Sunday, March 15, 2015

thought process;

i was reading an article on channel news asia the other day about five curveball questions that some people have been asked in job interviews and it talked about how companies say that there is no right answer and that they just want to see what your thought process is. 
thought process. i've been thinking a lot about that and why that is important. 
a person's thought process really helps you to understand why a person chooses to do things the way he/she does. 
a lot of times at work, you'll find that there are a lot of people who have a totally different working style from you. 
sometimes those working styles are hard to work with but you still have to learn to work with them.
these working styles are not wrong; just different from what you are used to.
at times like these, it really helps when i understand the person's thought process because then it really helps me to accept the way they do things more easily. 

in today's world where every aspect of our lives are so exposed on social media, while it's good cause technology allows us to share our lives with our family and friends who are far away from us, at the same time, i feel like it makes us more judgmental people in general.
i was chatting with a friend back in january and i asked her why she doesn't have facebook and she said cause once she's on facebook it increases her chances of judging people. so true.

so today i decided to blog about some of the common misconceptions that people may have about me and my thought process with regards to these things.

1. i must be very rich because i traveled back to singapore twice in the past three months
at the end of last year, i somehow found myself with quite a number of vacation days left and my family and i kept talking about taking a trip somewhere instead of just me going to singapore and them coming here (singapore and the u.s. are not really family vacation places if you know what i mean) so i took the opportunity to book a ticket to go to korea but since i'm on a work visa, i had to go back to singapore to get my visa stamped in my passport first (thus the extra trip to singapore). 
you could say, since it was so troublesome, you could have just chosen to stay in the United States and travel to another city using your vacation days (i have to use my vacation days because they don't carry it over to the next year if you don't use them all).
but honestly, would you like to spend christmas away from your family alone in a foreign country? having my family come here to spend christmas wasn't an option because of work schedules and what not and so i was willing to fork out the money on my end to make the trip because family is important to me. 

as to why i went back home again just two months after my last trip, this is because i always take an annual trip back to singapore during chinese new year which is usually in february.
if you know me well, you'll know that i love my culture and that chinese new year is my favorite holiday out of the whole year/all the holidays. 
chinese new year is to me what christmas is to everyone else here. 
yes, i could have chosen not to go back during chinese new year this year since i just barely went back to singapore in december, but chinese new year is very important to me because of the family ties that are strengthened during chinese new year.
during chinese new year, we get together with our extended families for reunion dinners and gatherings and we also give our new year greetings of health, prosperity, etc. to people who are older than us whom we respect. 
there are many chinese traditions that we follow during this time and it's just such a precious time to me that i was not willing to give that up (especially since i had to give up celebrating it with my family for many years while i was in school since it was right in the middle of the semester).
for me, family bonding is worth the price tag that comes with it.
it doesn't mean that i'm rich. it simply means that i'm willing to invest my money in the things that are important to me even if it means that i have less money for other things. 

2. somewhat related to #1, i must be very rich and have a lot of vacation days because when i'm not traveling home, i'm traveling to other places like los angeles, vegas, new york city, etc.
i'm in my 20s and i'm not married. that means that the money i earn is used for my own expenses/kept for savings. 
i do not have a family that i need to take care of living expenses for or am not tied down by anything. if on the weekend i want to just take off, there really isn't anything that's holding me back.
for me, now is the best time to be taking those travels and to enjoy and explore all i want now because when i'm married and have kids, it's going to be much harder to do those things. 
there's so much to explore in this world and so why not. trips are expensive but you gain experiences and learn things you could never put a price tag on.

also, there's something about living abroad that contributes to this jet-setter in me. if my family lived here, i would be content to just chill at home with them all weekend and it wouldn't matter. 
but i live far far away from my family and so for me, my adventures help fill that little emptiness in my heart.
when i was younger, friends were a big priority for me so i was fine being here just studying and then playing with my friends on the weekend.
but as i mentioned, family is my sole priority now that i'm older and so some weekends i seriously don't even have the motivation to want to arrange stuff with my friends and would therefore rather take off and go explore new cities. 
and as you can tell, i usually do weekend trips so there's no need for a lot of vacation days. 

3. i am extremely proud/rude/unfriendly/intimidating
friendships over the years have really worn me out. 
when you're younger, your only priority is to be as sociable as possible and to make as many friends as possible.
i have to admit that i'm not very sociable at all now. i go to church and i seriously don't know many people. because #1, i go to church for church/to worship and grow spiritually and #2, as bad as this sounds, i have my solid groups of friends and don't really need more.
friendships and working hard at friendships have made me so jaded over the years that i feel like i'm at a point where i know who my good friends are and focus on treating them well. 
i'm the kind of person who is nice to people who have proven to be true friends. 
i can be overly generous (sometimes to the point where people feel bad because i give so much) but that's just the way i am. 
and i guess it's because of how overly giving i am that friendships wear me out faster and so i can only focus on the ones that have proven to be solid ones? i really cannot handle flaky friends and a lot of times, new acquaintances can be that way a lot. 
because of my experiences over the year, my tolerance for flakiness is very low now and so once i sense flakiness, i'm out. 
i think it also comes back to the point again that family has become my #1 priority and so making new friends really isn't a big priority in my mind. 

4. i love the united states since i live and work here right now and therefore, i never want to move back to singapore
recently, quite a lot of people have been asking me if i eventually want to move back to singapore for good. i guess it's been coming up more since now i have a sibling that lives back home in singapore and one here compared to all of them living here. 
and it always surprises me when people respond in a surprised tone, "you want to move back to singapore eventually?"
why is that such an abstract concept to grasp?
i know for some people, the united states is the best country in the world and therefore, who would want to leave after living here?
however, i think it's important to point out that singapore is equally as great and so maybe that's why i don't see why it's surprising that i want to go back to singapore eventually.
and actually, even if singapore is a poor country and life here in the united states is better, it's not surprising if a person would choose to go back to the place they originated from because that's where their roots are.
for a lot of us, our roots and where our family is are both very important to us. 
if you were an american living in a foreign country, wouldn't you say the same? that you would want to move back to the united states eventually? i think it's the same concept. 
not everyone who comes here necessarily wants to find a way to live here forever. 

5. i dress to impress others
i've heard this question countless times, "why are you dressed so nice/all dressed up? where are you going?"
i think that because i always seem overdressed, it may look like i'm dressing to try to impress/attract the opposite sex or others in general.
in actual fact, i just really like nice clothes a lot haha. 
i take a lot of pride in what i'm wearing haha. t-shirt and jeans has never been my look even in college haha. 
i honestly don't really care what other people think about my outfit haha. as long as i think it looks put together well (colors match, etc.), i couldn't care less if you think it looks awful haha. 
also, dressing well is a way i show respect for the people i'm meeting.
if i dress sloppily, it means that not much effort or thought was put into it and i feel like that just means i didn't think it was worth my time to look presentable in your sight (okay, there are some exceptions where you were simply too busy - reason accepted). 
so yes, one shouldn't think too much about my clothes haha. i just like fashion and being fashionable hahaha. 

okay, i think that's about enough for the day. 
i could go on about other misconceptions like "i am super independent and successful and therefore, i don't have any fears/worries" etc. but you get the idea.
do you feel like you understand the way my brain works a little more now and where my priorities are?
the next time you're prepared to judge other people (trust me, i judge other people all the time too and am trying to be better too), try to think about their thought process and you'll find that if you understand why people do things the way they do because of the way their thought process works, it makes it easier for you to understand their point of view/decisions they make and not judge. 
enjoy what's left of the weekend/sunday night and have a good week ahead!

some happy photos of my weekend to lighten things up since this post was kind of heavy haha:
singaporean gatherings always have the best food 
henry was nice and quiet and playing by himself after he finished his dinner 
"so as i was saying"
"hmm, should i be interested?" 
 "oh my, what are those?"
 "no really, what are they?" (starting to panic a little haha)
 happy birthday jess!
king henry actually cooperated in this photo 
fooling around while king henry was fussing hahaha

xoxo,
C

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