August 5, 2021

13 thoughts on “Know yourself and define your own success!

  1. When we have live long enough and when we look back at ourselves and those around us, most of the outcomes are rarely random.

  2. Hi Rolf,

    Hahaha, you are a very good sport! I asked the questions without seeking an answers, it's just a way to let myself think also. I fully agree with you that a question is just a starting point to find out, to explore and to discuss. It's not about who gets the right answer. For that, I salute you for your attempt to take up the hard questions and answer them as fully as you did here. Well done!

    I find myself nodding as I scrolled down, until the last part about being fooled by randomness. Not sure if you misunderstand me, but I'm not saying that success is all based on luck. It's the part where we find ourselves narrating a series of things that we did, and each falling into place to lead us to a desired result that irks me. I admire strength of character, and agree that training all day long and being disciplined to do things to improve ourselves will eventually lead to success. But the sequence of events might be all haywired. Steve Jobs took up a class of calligraphy, without knowing why and without thinking it'll eventually create the beautiful typography of apple computers. He just did it. I'm quite sure he didn't have a great plan and he is doing a sequence of steps to reach that big plan. He just took what feels right, and forge his way towards the end goal with whatever he brings along in his baggage.

    But when we explain our success, we suddenly narrate it in such a rational story. The truth is, sometimes we succeed, and we don't know why. We just succeed and suddenly we're the happy winners of a lottery. Perhaps the hardwork played a part, but i'm sure there are times where we worked like crazy without seeing even an ounce of success. So what gives?

    I don't know. But I do know that to experience more success, we should be open minded and try out different things. It's always the people outside your group of friends that brings in revolutionary ideas and new business to you.

    To me, to be reminded of being a fool of randomness, is a call to be also the lottery winner of randomness. By going out of our usual pathway, and through reflections, we might hit something we never will if we continue our usual way.

    That, I think, is the spirit of the book and the spirit of Black swan by Nassim Taleb.

    1. Rolf,


      Next time someone feedback my comment long, I'll refer them to this post.

      I think this is the longest reply to rhetorical questions 😉

    2. Hi LP,

      Hahaha. I felt that the questions are good and led me thinking HARD. So instead, I decided to use it as an excuse to write myself a post on it.

      Engineer-trained Singaporeans all very obedient. Got questions CONFIRM must have answers!

      I think u probably remember I agreed on the Fool by Randomness part. We discussed before and that is why I was attracted to the book recommended by u.

      Yeah I think I misunderstood u earlier, that's when I felt strange that u can't possibly don't understand that success is not entire random.

      The hokkien song do make some sense "30% fate 70% effort!" And yes plus gut feel and just do it!

      Thanks LP.

    3. Hi Jared,

      hahaha… classic example of not only think too much and talk too much also… hahaha…

      That's why we are still young, you know! I don't believe when I am 60, I still write this long!

      CW – can vouch? Ooops not yet 60!

  3. Hi Rolf

    Wow mind boggling post and interactions you had there with LP!!!

    How do you know it's the highest point if not looking on hindsight? Who is to say that you are successful when your journey of life is not ended yet? Who are these people who commented and bragged so much about themselves? 😀

    1. Hi B,

      Hahaha…. interactions create thinking. Yes, the finishing line is not yet there! Save the best for last.

      But frankly highest or lowest is difficult to tell unless you look back. But we should be able to identify our high and low points on a more current basis, which to me is sufficient to help us tide out most (not all) storms.

  4. Hi Rolf

    Good conversation you have with LP here. Frankly, in another 60 years or so, most of us will be gone. Live your best life and don't look back.

    1. Hi FD,

      Thanks. Don't look back cannot identify the highest point. Haha….. but I agree to what you said. Highest or lowest is not important at all sometimes….. living the best of life is.

  5. Mental strength is everything. You just remind me of Stephen Hawking.
    And you are right, "Chiang se Lau de Lat"
    So is investing in the stock market needs a lot of mental strength.

    1. Hi temperament,

      Yeah you and CW are old gingers! Mental strength sometimes also being developed through great difficulties.

      Thanks for introducing Stephen Hawking. Something new I learn from blogging again.

      In 2006 Hawking posed an open question on the Internet: "In a world that is in chaos politically, socially and environmentally, how can the human race sustain another 100 years?", later clarifying: "I don’t know the answer. That is why I asked the question, to get people to think about it, and to be aware of the dangers we now face."

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