A Lesson at Cairnhill

A Lesson at Cairnhill

After my accident, I have actually been really out of touch with my real estate gig. Probably not just that, but also because being an agent I'd to be out and about constantly and right now due to the mobility issues I'd decided to take a break and focus on recovery instead.

So this is one of the first few times that I'd left home but not for medical purposes (like physio/follow up). It was refreshing to meet my team members, no doubt and also a huge thank you to my childhood buddy (since we kinda grew up together), for fetching me over! It was in fact a chore to even walk at this point.

I got off the car, and a gush of fresh air hits me. I really haven't been out for a long time. The greeneries, the signage that stood and guard the Cairnhill 16 showflat greeted me with pride. I looked around, and saw some of my team members scattered across the drop off point; and boy we're all dressed up. Please forgive my shorts if you see this and thank you for making an exception for me.

It literally felt like prom night, a sea of nostalgia flooded me. My team members felt like distant friends that I'd never thought I'll see again and a tinge of awkwardness surged up my sleeves. At some point, I was standing awkwardly with my crutches as I do some b-roll for my Instagram story.

We then got the meet Mr Chia, the developer/boss of TSky. Who welcomed us generously like our home. "Mi Casa Su Casa" was the vibe I'd gotten as we're all greeted with an array of finger food, from satay to some good ol' chang kee together with beer, and soft drinks. It felt a lot more like an informal casual sharing session instead of the serious locker room talk with our coach during time outs.

The purpose of this post isn't to share anything about the development or to sell anything. In fact, the major takeaway for me on that very day is nothing commercial but a more personal development side. And that got me writing about it.

He mentioned some stuff that made me take mental notes of, such as being genuinely caring and also helpful to people, which makes a lot of sense. As much as it sounds like textbook answers people aren't always that aware and thoughtful about giving value. And this would be something that I'll constantly tell myself if I'm "slacking" off in creating content/backlogging my writing. In the current modern world where things could arrive at a click of a finger, we are wired to take more than give. And it is definitely nice to be a giver for a change.

He shared that there are the 3 things in his opinion that I feel resonated very strongly with me as a takeaway. About how we could look at ourselves/our life as a ship and these are the 3 key things that we should have.

1) The Ballast: The Balance
I'm going to be embedding some photos in here to help illustrate, but the Ballast essentially is something that helped to balance the ship in the water. I went to find out how the Ballast work, and it's like a tank that water would be let in and out constantly to balance the ship. They are the people who keep us balanced, to keep us in check, the ones who would love us for who we are. They could be our loved ones, the people we account to, but the list goes on.

As funny as it sounds I wrote something on friendship audits that made me felt that it goes well with this. Like a Ballast, we should constantly review the people we let in and "out". Are we eventually letting in the right people? With a great balance system, you'll be sure to be able to brave the most fearsome storm and come back with stories to tell.

2) The Rudder: The Direction (or Goal)
Needless to say, what's good if we don't have a direction to go? Woz won't have to know how far he could have gone without Jobs back in the day. To have the direction, a goal or a vision is important not just to the ship but to the captain and yours truly. It is paramount to set goals, be it big or small, to start out with a step, to take the leap to simply, begin. And for that to happen we need a direction.

The rudder is in fact a very technical term, but it is actually the PRIMARY instrument to steer a vehicle of such. Don't let its size fool you, but such a small instrument could turn more than just heads. This also help tells the fact that each and every action starts from something small. Be it a good habit, a goal, or simply a change in you that you'll like to see.

3) The Engine: The Power
I see power as more than just power, the engine itself not just gives us the motivation to go on, but also the strength to power actions. They are the muscles to our goal. I also see consistency. Like how we have to be constantly powered. Like a light bulb or like a vehicle in general. You could go 100km/h but you won't get to 100km if you can't keep up for an hour. Constant work is key; you get the drift... right? Consistency comes when we keep our engine "running", by greasing the gears constantly, by feeding the engine the right "things", consuming the right food, the right media, to keep us mentally and physically well.

You don't have to be the fastest engine in the world, you just have to keep your engine running. Of course, don't ever stop for a refuel if you need a break or any sort! The last thing you would want is you getting burnouts.


Perhaps it's been a long time since I'd been "gaining" insights", or meeting people. My past few months are filled with nothing but painful memories and thoughts of getting better. It literally felt like I'm moving up Maslow's Hierarchy of needs now, but it is indeed really nice to feel that I'm growing by the days.

To be able to learn from such a titan of a figure in the Real Estate industry sure opened my eyes for me. That also got me digging deeper into who I am, what I enjoy doing and how do I go from there. And with this, I'll like to end off with a quote that he's bestowed to me in our Q&A session.

"You'll never know if you can dance until you're at the dance floor"
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