How to be independent?

As parents, one of my prayers for our children is that they will grow into independent people. At the most fundamental level, independent people are able to care for their food, clothing, accommodation, and travel [4], collectively termed as 衣食住行, which are the basic necessities of lives and termed as the physiological need by Abraham Maslow.

I also pray that they will be emotionally and financially independent, and have independence of mind, time and location. The more independent a person is, the happier s/he feels! The only person that will always be with you is you.

Financial independence means having the wealth to sustain the lifestyle that we choose, for example the minimalist lifestyle. “Don’t let mass media distort our views of how to live. The path to financial independence lies in discipline, hard work and frugality.20160625

Independence of time and location means having control of how we spend our time and where our location is, respectively.

To think independently,

  1. accept ourselves, our personality, opinions, preferences, and decisions.
  2. apply #pandaTFBH to protect ourselves from the opinions/judgments of other people.
  3. believe that the Universe has a good plan for us.
  4. believe in ourselves and our decisions, event though our decisions may be unconventional or non-conforming to current expectations.
  5. be self-motivated and self-actualizing. Just do it and achieve!
  6. create our own life stories, be the best you can be: the best student, the best athlete, the best artist, the best father/mother, the best professional, the best hero/heroine you can be. Plan your day (week, month, and year), as I taught Little Prince through his most favorite page from the Let’s Play story book, “At the end of a busy day, it’s good to be alone and think about tomorrow.”

Undeniably, working at someone else’s organization/company often means that we have to follow their rules, unless one is a valuable personnel with a bargaining power, for example Marissa Mayer who could convert her office into a nursery but made Yahoo employees to bid farewell to their flexible working location.

We are grateful that between 2015 and 2016, Honey Panda enjoyed independence of time and location, as long as he delivers results to his company.


On 20160719, Little Prince, Little Princess and I had a day trip. We took MRT to Toa Payoh, and from there we boarded one of the longest bus rides in Singapore, i.e. bus 143 from Toa Payoh to Jurong East.

While Little Prince was looking forward to riding a green double decker bus of Tower Transit for the first time, we boarded a white double decker bus and saw few green double decker buses of route 143 on the opposite direction. At least, the friendly driver who drove safely wore a green jacket. I am grateful for this experience [1], as we have encountered impatient drivers. We also succeeded to secure the front seats at the upper deck, Little Prince’s favorite spot.

Since 20160719 was the first time for us to ride bus 143 from the start to the end, we felt the pleasure of a traveler. It will be a pain to ride for such a long journey if one has to commute for studying/working twice a day.

Little Prince enjoyed his ride greatly, and felt asleep after Chinatown. During his almost one hour nap, I did a sightseeing and reflected on our lives as I forgot bringing my earpiece for listening to my cherished mentors. Some landed properties along West Coast have private swimming pools and I saw a property with three cars parked inside.

In competitive places like Hong Kong, Shanghai, or Singapore, I greatly appreciate (i) the independence of not having to work fixed hours in Summer 2016, (ii) the freedom to have a day out with our children during weekdays and not to fight for resources (bus seats, playgrounds, restaurant seats) with other people, and (iii) the constant income. Dear Universe, thank you very much for being generous and kind to us! While I enjoy and respect working, I aspire doing meaningful work, to earn a living for my family, to serve my clients/customers, and to realize my greater potentials.

How can I have more such a relaxing day-out with our children, while earning at least current or higher income in the near future?

  1. ora et labora
  2. use the power of subconscious mind
  3. consider alternatives and think outside of the box to be the crème de la crème
  4. #pandaMnemonic LACY : learn + adapt + create + yield (contribute)

Our arrival at Jurong East was the beginning of a fun day of playing, eating, and learning [2]. Visiting the crowded Jurong East also made me feel more grateful for the less smokers in our neighborhood areas. Honestly, pregnant women like me dislike and try to avoid smokers, but I sometimes pray that they would stop one day for the sake of their health and loved ones.

At Jurong East, we saw the train ride that costs $6/ride. Though I may pay for Little Prince to ride on it, accompanied by his great grandmother or grandparents [3], I told Little Prince that $6 is expensive for such a ride. We had a better (longer) ride on the double decker bus 143, I only paid around $1.9. Little Prince was contented for sitting on the immobile train (while there was no customer), and allowing me to capture few photos of him. However, I could feel a feeling of envy in him, when he saw the moving train. It’s an opportunity for him to learn dealing with envy and use it as a positive driving force.

[1] I am also grateful for this experience showing that I can be a super Mom: a heavily pregnant woman in her trimester carrying her toddler up and down a double decker bus. However, I have done my homework and researched on the route of 143, boarded at the initial stop and alighted at the last stop, so the bus driver would wait for us.

[2] see 20160719_itinerary.png

[3] My maternal grandfather passed away while I was toddler. I did not remember him, because we were living in another city, but I could tell from the photographs that he loved me greatly.

[4] grep “20161018 lesson” ref2016/*.txt

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