The Story behind the Battlefield

Just an ordinary woman trying to make a living out of something that she loves.

It seems like a lifetime ago when I just started out as a bushy-tailed, bright-eyed graduate with zero work experience. I’m not ancient; that was year 2006, which may or may not be a long time ago, depending on the context as well as the individual.

The idea of stepping out into society and be part of the labour force should have been intimidating, considering that I had never worked in my entire life (no, not even part-time), but I guess I was too young and full of hope to feel any fear. Que sera, sera.

I was lucky in the sense that my job search was pretty short, and I subsequently spent about 8 months as a production control officer in a Japanese firm in the semiconductor industry. I learnt a lot from many colleagues there and I would meet people who would change my perspectives on certain issues. Albeit a mere 8 months, this experience would lay the foundation for my future work standards and expectations.

After leaving the afore-mentioned company and taking a break for about 4 months, I found myself in another Japanese firm, this time as a secretary. That was totally in name only, because the size of the company ensured that I dabbled in backend sales support, administrative duties, and human resource management (HRM), the last of which would subsequently become my favourite and (supposedly) main role in the firm.

I’m no HR expert, but due to the fact that the company was so small, I was allowed ample freedom to explore a lot of things independently. The economic downturn in 2009 also enabled me to take a HR course that lasted a year. It was an altogether enlightening experience. Whenever something happens, I believe that one always has a choice to see the events or incidents in a positive or negative light. Similarly, there is always a choice to play an active or passive role. I’m exceedingly grateful that my mentor-cum-colleague at that time encouraged and motivated me to be proactive rather than reactive.

There were also opportunities to learn 2 new computer-based systems, and because of an extremely bad kick-off with the first, I was forced to look deep into the system in an attempt to improve the efficiency of work. That was an arduous task, which likely chipped a couple of years off my life. However, when the time came for me to establish the other system, I grew to be immensely thankful for the previous experience.

It was a fruitful journey that lasted for about 4 years and 9 months. Naturally, it wasn’t all about work throughout this period, although I’m a self-confessed workaholic. Well, my energy comes in spurts; when I relax, I’m lazy to the point of being a vegetable, but when I work, I can work without meals, without baths, and without sleep.

There were family and friend issues amidst all the above, and I came to know myself much more from all these. In life, if you want to succeed in anything (according to your own terms, of course), it is first necessary to be self-aware.

I’m probably what many would call ‘opinionated’, ‘arrogant’, and all too ‘serious’. My confidant, who happens to be my sister, would probably rephrase that to become ‘have a mind of her own’, ‘self-assured’, and ‘man, you don’t know my sister if you think she’s serious. She’s an outright kook!’

In any case, the attributes above may not make me a very…comfortable companion to work with. To some people, at least. I’m amicable and sweet to people who do their jobs properly, but woe to the ones who shirk their responsibilities and are generally inefficient. They learn, all too late, that this woman not only has horns, but also claws and a tail. She’s also not afraid to use them.

It’s an exploratory phase in my life at the moment. More than dollar and cents, it’s about what I can do and how far I can take it. It’s about the challenge of going about things alone and calling the shots as well as taking full responsibility for the outcome.

It’s also about taking care of my family. Maybe not in providing for them abundantly in the financial sense in the initial stages, but in giving the oldies (read: my parents) something that they can enjoy doing while being paid fairly for their efforts.

Lastly, it’s about sharing what I love.

Shiny baubles that won’t break my bank account (or yours), or at least not all of them would. The (range of) products featured here may change in time, but they are all about beauty. Beautiful people, beautiful objects, and beautiful sentiments.

Writing. My first love, so as to speak. It goes without saying that I would include personal essays and notes here. Some of the topics that I’m passionate about include the below and are all filed under sub-categories (in italics) in ‘TALES FROM THE WARRIOR‘:

  • Tales on Preparation for the Battle – On past and present work experiences and lessons learnt from them, as well as thoughts on fair employment practices.
  • Tales on Wanderlust – My travel log.
  • Among the Ranks – Notes on leadership, politics, & power.
  • Random Musings by the Fire – Life, real and imagined and everything in between. A sanctuary for self-development.

At the end of the day, it’s not about me as an individual, but the roles I want to play and the roles I can inspire in others so that we may progress as one universal race.