Business in Indonesia

12th – 14th January 2014: I flew to Bandung to meet a group of underground marketers. When I arrived, I didn’t know what to expect as I knew only one of the members in their band. For one, I didn’t know the weather here was so cold! Regret not bringing my jacket or any thick clothing.

What followed later was a crazy 2 days with these guys. The word ‘underground’ is overused and jaded in the Internet Marketing scene but these guys are truly the definition of underground (hence the blurred out faces).

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I got checked into a 4 star hotel here on the treat of one of these guys (thanks a lot! Will do the same for you when you come to Malaysia).

Anyways, one of the guys in this photo makes an average $50,000 a month and growing, and his teacher banked in $300,000 during the holiday season just a month ago. I also got to meet their ‘fledgling students’ who make anywhere from $1K a week to even $1K a day.

And get this: these folks are one-man online marketers, not conventional business owners with showy office premises and a massive team to impress (though they do work as a team of their own).

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I also visited the most successful person in their group at his own residence, where all his students and even employees work at his place.

While I have sworn under oath not to reveal their secrets, what these guys – and more not shown in the pic – have accomplished are feats that put many self-proclaimed Internet marketing experts and ‘seminar teachers’ to shame, and I had to fly over and meet them to believe it. It was both eye opening and humbling experience learning from these unsuspecting giants.

15th January. Now I am in Jakarta. Dee Ferdinand had arranged for me to speak at his Inner Talk event at the DBS Tower, this being the fourth time they are holding the event already.

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The event is sponsored as part of Global Entrepreneurship Program Indonesia (GEPI) with the aim of growing and training more entrepreneurs in the country. It’s akin to being an incubator hub.

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So I delivered my 45 minute keynote presentation to the audience, and by extension some more time due to the late arrival of the second speaker.

I was slowly recovering not long ago but my case of nausea worsened again while I’m here, so the 45 minutes seemed longer and torturing! I survived on several packets of Fisherman’s Friend and downed countless bottles of lemon.

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How I pulled it off is still beyond me, but I crashed on the hotel bed by the time I got back.

And that brings me to the here and now. I’m typing this from my hotel room. For the next two more days I will be at Calibre Works to brief Dee’s people on how to carry out the next product launch we are working on together.

I’m glad I got done deal with that talk, however it made me seriously think about how I am going to carry on some more talks and seminars if my health is constantly threatened by nausea.

On the 18th, I will be flying to Singapore before I go back to Malaysia.

Evening Tuition Class?

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Calvin Woon and Patricia Lin‘s first time in KL! I drove them over to meet the other entrepreneurs in the city and the casual meet up turned into an ‘evening tuition class’, joined by best-selling author on Gold & Silver investment Jonathan Quek and Youth Entrepreneur Icon Michael Teoh. An enriching evening indeed with great company and an awesome learning experience!

Happy New Year 2014!

1. My continued effort to train at the gym got stopped by the all-too-familiar nausea feel again. The last two trainings lasted only about half an hour each instead of the usual hour long session, which means I didn’t complete them. It was embarrassing. I wasn’t lifting heavy yet I felt I was going to black out and throw up.

2. Since then, I had went back to Johor to rest at mom’s place and hopefully recuperate. The nausea feeling stayed with me for more than a month. I visited the doctor that mom recommended but I felt it was a rip-off and unnecessary. The doctor suggested I take a blood test – I already did that last year, and the results came back with nothing unusual. I also had a camera slipped through my nose and the doctor found nothing unusual in my throat either. RM400 and 2 days later and I found out nothing about the cause of the nausea, which still remains a mystery to me. It’s not serious – it’s ANNOYING.

3. So I have to be extra careful with the food I take now. It sucks that I have to be this cautious with my health while I am still in my twenties. The nausea feel is also putting a dent on my social life, and that’s why I haven’t met any of my friends for more than a month now. I wouldn’t want to keep excusing myself away when I feel like vomiting.

4. While I’ve started to feel better and less nausea since last weekend, I am still not too sure about it. Will try gymming again later this week and cross my fingers that my body is up for the punishment again.

5. I will be leaving for Indonesia on the 12th through 18th January. Will be in Bandung to meet some underground affiliate marketers, and then in Jakarta to deliver a short presentation at the Calibre Works office owned by my Indonesian friends Dee Ferdinand and Padro Widjaja. I better not start feeling dizzy with nausea on stage!

Hong Kong Revisited

I didn’t think I’d come back to Hong Kong again. Not so soon, that is. This is where I stayed this time.

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Yeah, this is some ghetto alright. I’ve played video games and watched films where they have settings in the dirty suburbs of Hong Kong (think Sleeping Dogs, Pacific Rim, Call of Duty: Black Ops, etc.) – and I never imagined it more horrible to live in one.

My friend Nick booked us a hostel to stay in the short notice, and my friends and I spent 3 nights living in what I would rate as the worst hotel / hostel I’ve stayed ever.

The room is very small and claustrophobic. The walkways are creepy as hell I bet this is where games like Silent Hill and Resident Evil drew their inspiration from. The toilet door is flimsy and the towels… damned towels always disappear! The military compound I stayed in Palembang a while back is a luxury in comparison.

It’s unfortunate that we couldn’t secure the same hotel I stayed in months earlier due to the holiday season and the short notice – no thanks to Nick’s poor planning! (In a twist of irony, Nick arrived one day later and spent his birthday in the same shit hole as us LOL)

So what brought me to Hong Kong again so soon? New batch of friends want to do their shopping spree this time. And while we were at it, might as well sample some of the food here. 🙂

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We also managed to ‘self invite’ our way into Redwolf Airsoft (my second time here) even though it is in their policy not to entertain walk-in visitors. Their impressive armory of airsoft guns always make my mouth water. 😛
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We spent the last night with our Hong Kong friends Leo, Sasa, Kit, and Ah Chi eating a prosperous dinner, sampled some nice desserts (their cold red bean soup is the best!) and ended the night with an amazing (also spooky experience) of CQB airsoft in abandoned school 🙂

This time’s trip to Hong Kong is just as rushed as the first one. If I come back again, I will definitely want to visit other places – I’m bored of Mongkok and Nathan Road already!
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Month #32: Once A Week Gym Training

qls-fitnessNot good. First, I was plagued with Internet problems at home that forced me to work from Starbucks or friends’ homes and offices since May. For all the time spent on driving to and fro these places, it ate into my time to train my regular 3 times a week schedule at the gym.

While Internet speed improved miraculously two months ago, it was already time I hit the seminar and workshop circuit which demanded even more of my time. Thus my gym training had been reduced to a frequency of just once a week or less.

Now that my 3 day workshops are done with, I am now gradually resuming my training at the gym starting with two times a week.

However there is an upside to it: the lesser training frequency bought me time to gain the much needed weight that I had been losing all these while (since I am poor at weight gaining).

The most important thing right now is not to discontinue the training that I had started in May 2011, as I promised myself to keep this ongoing.

I had seen how the Yonif Raiders trained while I was staying in their camp in Palembang. The Green Mountain Rangers team training together outside of their regular Sunday airsoft game also motivates me. There is no reason to slack. After all, I have all the time in the world to sleep after I am dead. 🙂