Budget Update: May 2019
Budget Update: May 2019
An okay month, budget-wise. Things slow down due to fasting season, less events and meetups than usual. That gave me more time to spend on online courses.
The one I’m enlisted in now, Dream Job course by Ramit Sethi, has a component forcing me to identify and list down my mental barriers, or negative beliefs that stop me from achieving whatever it is that I want to achieve.
After taking some time to think about it, I came up with 6 mental barriers that I personally have:
- Fear in managing a team. This has kept me as a solopreneur all this while, a one-person team. I realise that while I can grow fast, I can’t grow far without hiring people.
- Hard to get out of scarcity mindset. It’s not as bad as before, but my default is still to save money rather than earn money.
- Need to improve my presentation & speech skills. It can be better. It can always be better.
- Stingy with higher-cost self-development tools and courses. Self-explanatory.
- Don’t like working with VIPs or bigshots. So I prefer not having them as clients, despite the big paychecks. I’m okay with this barrier actually.
- Uncomfortable with outbound sales. I guess the solution for this is to be really, really good with inbound sales.
‘Fixing’ myself will be a process, hopefully a fun and fulfilling one. I just want to be the best version of myself, you know? After talking to some friends, a few suggested going to Toastmasters meetups to improve on #3.
If anyone has more suggestions on how I can improve my presentation skills, I’m all ears 🙂 Been getting more speaking and presenting gigs nowadays. I just want to do a good job and be worth people’s time.
Yay of the Month:
- Booked flights to Perth for a family trip in August! Managed to get RM800 return flight tickets, which is pretty good for a non-AirAsia flight. Yay can’t wait to pamper my parents.
- Crypto is bullish again yaaay
- Watched ‘Talking Money‘, an observational documentary by Sebastian Winkels and screened during the Freedom Film Festival. This was the first time conversations and power dynamics at the bank is recorded in this way (see the trailer below). At the end of the screening, during the Q&A session, I asked Sebastian about what he learned from the interactions. He said that customers tend to talk too much, explain themselves too much, offer too much personal information. We feel the need to talk through the silence, but sometimes this is used against us. Good point – banks do their best to portray a friendly image, but sometimes we forget they are profit-focused institutions, too.
TALKING MONEY – Official Trailer (2019) from solo:film on Vimeo.
- I like trying out different digital marketing hacks, and one of them worked particularly well in May 2019. I managed to grow my Ringgit Oh Ringgit Facebook page by… 1.4k. From 6.2k likes to 7.6k likes in one month, as of writing time. Ask me how 😉
- In other digital marketing updates, I also started offering a lead magnet (a downloadable freebie) to grow my mailing list. That’s working as well – it’s growing around 2.5x the usual rate. I made it using Designrr, a marketing tech tool which helps you to easily turn existing content into other formats.
- Read 3 books. Becoming Hannah: A Personal Journey by YB Hannah Yeoh (very inspiring! I cried a few times), Disrupted: Ludicrous Misadventures in the Tech Start-Up Bubble by Dan Lyons (laugh-out-loud behind the scenes of Hubspot, an inbound marketing and sales startup) and Bridget Jones: The Edge of Reason by Helen Fielding (I prefer the movie)
- Attended SJ+ Youth Forum’s event ‘Clickbait: The Changing Face of Today’s News’ to learn about the use and ethics of clickbait in journalism. Nandini from SAYS couldn’t make it, but it was informational nonetheless.
- Started a decluttering challenge! I aim to get rid of 30 things in 30 days from my home. Got the inspiration from other bloggers, thought it’s a good idea to do it myself. It’s Day 7 as of writing time, so far so good. I’ve donated, sold and threw out a few items.
Nay of the Month:
- Delayed the writing contest announcement for Money Stories from Malaysians: Volume 2. Facing some mental barriers – for some reason, I fear no one will join this time around. It’s an irrational fear yet it’s still a fear. Need to work on overcoming it.
- Had to pay RM25 x 2 credit card service tax. I tried to call them hoping they’d waive it, but no dice. Ah at least I tried.
- RM480 for monthly groceries is a reduction from the previous month, but still too high for my taste.
- I am obsessed with this one bag from The Weekend Edit. It’s so pretty, God so pretty. Obviously they installed Pixel in their website because the ads keep popping up in my Facebook and Instagram, reminding me to buy it. Usually, when I want something expensive that I don’t technically need, I will force myself to wait. If I still remember it after a few months, then I allow myself to make the purchase. It’s a good strategy because 99% of the time I’ll forget it anyway. But this one. I have a feeling I’ll keep remembering it. But I don’t need it, I already have enough bags. But it’s so pretty. This mental dilemma is driving me nuts.
- Another live plant died, so I bought a damn fake plant.
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After multiple attempts to keep a damn plant alive on this shelf and failing because the damn cats keep knocking them down, I’ve finally decided to buy a damn fake plant . Cost: RM9.90 for the plastic palm leaves from Kaison. Wasted: approx RM100 between 3 or 4 live plants . #igiveup #kaison #kaisonmalaysia #lifewithcats #dekomalaysia #dekorumahmalaysia #malaysiahomedecor
Things to Look Forward to:
RayaEnd of fasting month. Not particularly excited for Raya to be completely honest. It’s just, meh.
- I might… go to Estonia in June? I applied for a journalist programme that I saw from a random Twitter post, and suddenly informed I got it? Nothing’s confirmed yet so far, but if yes, wow. It’s fully-sponsored too!
- I’m one of the speakers at People Power forum, as part of the Popular Bookstore-organised Bookfest Malaysia 2019 event. Come see me 🙂 More info at https://bit.ly/bfmted19
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I’m one of the speakers at @popularmalaysia ‘s People Power talk. Come see me 😊 More info at https://bit.ly/bfmted19 Registration fee: RM10 (includes entry tix to BookFest Malaysia 2019) Date: 8 June 2019 (Sat) Time: 11.00am – 1.30pm Venue: Hall 5, Hospitality Lounge 5 Speakers: Suraya Zainudin – Enterpreneur, Speaker and Consultant M. Krishnamoorthy – Author, Professor and Trainer Ching Lee Hwa – Author, Master Trainer and Coach #bookfestmalaysia #bookfestmalaysia2019 #popularbookstore #tedxkl #trainasia #malaysians #malaysia #KLCC #kualalumpur #bookloversmalaysia
Selamat Hari Raya, Maaf Zahir Batin. Please drop a prayer for my late grandmother, Hajah Kamariah binti Sidek. This is our first Raya without her, and we miss her very much.
To read about my past monthly budget update, click here. Graphs are taken from my expense-tracking app Money Lover (how expense tracking works)
Condolences on your grandmother’s passing, I hope the festivities will be kind to you.
For #3, speaking and presentation, have you considered practising through video recordings and podcasting? You don’t have to put them up online, but it’d be good for you to reflect.
I also find following standup comedians and/or tedtalks to be pretty good ways to pick up presentation skills. Especially if it’s the “I have a script and don’t need to veer too sharply from it” kind of presso.
I might do video recordings or podcasts just for practising, that’s not a bad idea at all. Thanks for the tips!
What app are you using to record down your expenses?
An early Selamat hari raya wish to you.
I use an app called Money Lover. Here’s my writeup on expense tracking and tools you can use http://ringgitohringgit.com/expense-tracking/
Thanks! Happy holidays to you too
Hi Suraya, I hope I am not too late to wish you selamat hari raya. 🙂
Just wondering, are you still using Yoodo? Do you have any other internet subscription like unifi etc.? Thanks!
Hi Wan! Of course not. Selamat Hari Raya to you too!
I’m still using Yoodo, yes 🙂 Not that keen to be locked into a contract under unifi. I use about 30-40GB per month, more than enough usually.
(My Yoodo invite code is zwbai7716 btw hehe get RM20 if you use it)