Agnes, a hands-on Singaporean mother, shares with us the lessons she has learned while growing up, and what she hopes to pass on and inspire in to her son.
#1 DARE TO DREAM
As a kid, I used to dream of flying unicorns and living in a life-sized dollhouse. As a teenager, I used to spend many hours in lectures dreaming about the student leader from the school debate team. A classmate who used to sit next to me in lecture would catch me in my “drifting-away-in-la-la-land” mode. She would gesture with her pen and pretended to burst my dream bubble. THE dream guy ended up as my first boyfriend in school!
As a working adult, I was retrenched after having spent nearly half a decade in a boutique wealth management firm. But, this ended up with me landing my dream job in a top-tier foreign private bank. Big or small, your dreams belong to you (solely) – pursue them courageously to make them a reality!
#2 READ, READ, and READ MORE
One of my favorite play-pretend activities as a kid was ‘The Library’. We would gather any books available at our grandmother’s home and cut pieces of papers to paste on the books as borrowing slips. We even had a date stamp with an ink pad and took turns to be the librarian. We would spend hours devouring the contents in the borrowed books. “Knowledge is never wasted.” It is absolutely cool to be a bookworm!
#3 “NEVER BE AFRAID TO GET YOUR HANDS DIRTY”
An ex-colleague entrepreneur involved in start-ups used to share that this was his top criteria when interviewing and selecting a candidate. I used to nod in agreement, but never quite understood the importance of it and the magnitude of its bearings, up until I tried my hand in an actual start-up project. With limited resources, you learn faster with the willingness to get your hands dirty. Along the way, you will discover many newfound strengths, and the biggest beneficiary is truly yourself!
#4 TRUST YOUR OWN INSTINCTS
Albert Einstein had a saying “The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.” I encourage my 8 year old son to trust his instincts – after all his instincts will accompany him in major crossroads he will face in the future.
#5 STAY CURIOUS
I still wonder why my sweet and sour pork turns out to be inconsistent every time I cook it. I remain in the pursuit of finding the secret formula to do it. Curiosity does not kill the cat – it opens up a whole new world. Go in the pursuit of answers every time you get pinched by the curious bug.
Contributing Writer (Agnes Siau)
A proud mother of one. A dreamer till this age.
I started to cook only at the age of 35, simply because my curiosity in cooking was not piqued till my later stage in life.
My accompanying life motto has been Sun Tzu’s “Minimum Effort, Maximum Result”.