“Go go! Just go for it!” he shouted at the top of his voice and he came running from behind, passed me and sprint off forward.

He wasn’t anyone who I know, just someone who is taking the Individual Physical Proficiency Test (IPPT) with me. He chose to cheered on even though I’m sure he is freaking tired. It was infectious.

I reciprocated. I widen my steps and took my best attempt to sprint towards to finish line too, completing my 2.4km run station just behind him, getting my first ever Gold standard!

It was a goal I had for previous years but as I never did achieve it, I drop it out of my New Year Resolution for the past two years. Getting a knack that I could do this this time, I committed for a goal to gold just six weeks before!

As I proudly showed my comrades, who are relaxing at the stadium stand with their fruit juice, the number “5” chip which I got from the run (which meant that I came in 5th out of the cohort of 35 odd), fellow comrade AC chirped in:

At this age, you still can accomplish a Gold, you know that when you believe, you can do anything. Really.

Well, I guess I can. Thank you both of you for your motivation during the run and the after thoughts inspiration. I’ll remember this dearly.


Never Flagging in Adversity

I was not the easiest person to work with – full of skepticism and negativity. Most of my high school classmates would avoid me. I was in huge internal struggles. Depressed. Despair about life. It was so dark that I there was actually a blank in my memory of a few of those moments, which I knew there was extreme pain but I couldn’t remember the details of it…


The Navy has been a very important part of my life journey. I am extremely fortunate to be working under a dedicated group of passionate officers who accepted me for who I was, who saw my flair and nurture my creativity, who mended the broken me together.

To begin with, I was part of the army who didn’t want to let me go. Yet, I’m always treated as part of the Navy family. My commanding officer did not have to do this out of his busy schedule because I’m really a nobody but he made two calls to the personnel department to ask to keep me with the Navy family.

I am no sailor, but the officers who were under him took very good care of me too. They offered me their friendship and taught me the traditions of the seas anyway, a lot going far back into the Age of Discovery. I fondly remembered the many nights working through projects with them. The many bowling sessions we gone for. The really generous affirmation they have given me about my work and my artistry.

I also saw through a dark moment – RSS Courageous. I remembered the skies poured its wrath at us, soaking every hair and every skin on that sombre day which the military funeral took place. All soaked and cold, our hearts strung in a common heavy beat as the procession drove passed us.

Through fair winds and against rough seas, this journey had built my courage and my confidence to live on and gave me a chance to redeem myself. It is for this reason, I always feel very much indebted to the Navy and will forever be grateful to be given a chance to be a part of this great family.

Journal, Leadership in Action

Getting Priorities Right: Observing Leadership in Action

I’m currently in the middle of my 12-day service back with the Navy. (For non-Singaporean visitors to my blog, you can read more about Singapore’s conscription process right here.)

I’m pretty sure that a lot of people may disagree but I thought everything has gone rather smoothly, even though the Company Sergeant Major, the Company Quartermaster and his trusty sidekick are not around with us this time.

Taking over the main coordination work was the (at first I though he would be) reluctant but (in the end) he gave it his all Operation Specialist. Obviously, he was a lot more slower in gathering the stores compared to the experienced Company Quartermaster but the process I thought was generally smooth.

There was a small “little hiccup” though as he started counting the number of pliers and wire-cutters he had just drawn from the store, where he was solemnly reminded by the officer not to do the counting himself but to continue his coordination work with him.

In a “crisis” mode, I thought I might have done the same as him. It was just a solemn reminder to me as well that getting priorities right is crucial, which in his case, he can entrust the counting to another person who can do the same thing, while continue on the coordination work which he was the only one who could do it.

But still, not a bad attempt for a person doing major logistics work for the first time. I’m quite impressed actually. 🙂