Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Road Less Travelled could be the Lesson of a Lifetime. So what you waiting for?

Donate stuff to feel peaceful within
  It all started with this recyle box. When one's life is filled with too many material stuff, I find it so releasing and nurturing to my soul when I donate stuff away. Stuff that I no longer use or those that holds memories you just wish it'll go away. But humans make mistakes, you can accidentally donated stuff that you still cherishes. That's what happens to me. Losing stuff helps me to readjust my inner self and to be detach to material. Somehow I decided to take a trip to the recycle centre to really find out if my missing stuff is still there.

Preparation that leads to excitement
So I tried to locate the place of this recycle centre and did some homework online about its location and how to get there. The recycle centre is located all the way at Batu 14, Kajang. My adventure spirit seems to be awakened for it is nice to break away from the usual route of life in the city and search for a place foreign to me. Finding my missing stuff is just another excuse for me to take the journey. This stuff remains a mystery here.

Be kind to other people, and others will be kind too
Like the saying in my Artiste Training Course "A guide only will appear when you are ready". On the way to the recycle centre, I managed to stumble upon my guide. And she's going to the exact location I'm after! She's a beautiful Indian girl and we talked and shared a lot about our lives. It's comforting to know her father loves her more than her mother, who apparently abandons her. All mothers are not whom they're supposed to be as seen in the media. They can be irresponsible too. When her stop arrives, I bid her goodbye.

We are all beautiful & the same
My attention was then on the teenage girls in the bus because one was wearing so much make-up, she practically looked like a lost doll! The other was wearing a tudung and tight blouse. Both of them looked beautiful and truly unique to me. To others they may look "over", but to me they are the essence of what makes us human in the first place. Hey, I fell onto the seats of the bus when the driver turned a curb and laughed at myself hysterically. I enjoy watching people and am thankful we are all unique but really are the same deep inside.

Bird shop..chirp, chirp, chirp

Chinese cemetery beside

Expect it to be harder than you imagined
The location map of the recycle centre is not really precise for interpretation. On a foreign journey like this, one needs major location points to help map out the road, like the bridge that crosses the river Sungai Langat, the police station (as seen in the map) just right before the bridge, the tiles factory and finally the recycle centre. I was expecting very early on that it's going to be an unexpectedly long journey, and it was. I had to walk quite long distances beside the main road, but truly loved every moment of it! While looking for the recycle centre, I saw an eeerie Chinese cemetery just by the roadside. The weather was cooling. Also spotted a row of abandoned housing project and a few colonial style shophouses with their interesting business operation: a birds specialty shop, car repair and mostly eateries.
Finally here, but where's my stuff?

It's not about getting what you want
Finally arrived the recycle centre, after a very long walk. Passed through the guard who was kind to show me the space where all the donated stuff are properly categorised. He then introduced me to the staff there who showed me a pile of stuff where my missing stuff is supposedly categorised in. In my heart, I knew this would be the result. But I am fine about not getting back the stuff I mistakenly donated. It could be that I didn't donate it to the recycle centre in the first place or I might have thrown it out in the rubbish bin. All is well. Knowing I have a long journey back, I hurriedly took a quick pee and immediately set to begin my journey back to the bus-stop.

You are beautiful no matter what they say
It's truly the experience you seek, not the material
The feeling of familiarity began to set in for those who are going back after they first set trail looking for a location. I am more relaxed now, for I know the road "home". I began to wonder about the lives of folks living in such a hassle-free and non-commercialised environment. They all seem very relaxed and easy-going. On the way, I found a "shortcut" through the grass, where I was able to reach the bridge crossing the Sungai Langat just slightly faster. But I'm in no hurry. On the bridge, I came across this beautiful woman standing over and looking at the river. The waters below is so calming, I just want to loiter a while and inhale the atmosphere. I loved the way she dressed, which was "awkward" to stiff city folks, but to me: she was just expressing who she truly is, without fear and worry. And that's wonderful. Salute!

Care for a cup?
A journey's end is another new journey's beginning
I always remember to reward myself after such an "adventure". There's a coffee shop at the corner of the traffic lights and bus route where I can easily spot the coming bus at a distance. So I ordered a drink and watch all the vehicles passing by, while waiting for my bus. A journey like this is invigorating and life-affirming to me because I get to use the whole of me: my mind to plan ahead this journey and heart to cushion whatever results of my discovery would be. Then I have to be aware of my surroundings so I won't miss the location. It's all very good to tread on a road less taken which sheds light to life lessons one already long knew in his heart.

The road less travelled is best began with our Artiste Training Course

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Practical Money-saving Tips for Practical Artistes

Happy like a Scrooge?
As an Artiste Training Coach, I always ask about the well-being of my students. Interestingly, a majority of my students are quite well-off. But there are some who are not. Some of them are taking on the artiste life full-time, and that's where the money issue comes in. Because as an artiste, you may or may not get a consistent income. Hopefully these few tips will help you tide those hard times.

1) Spend money (no matter how much) to get value
You might be surprised why spending money is important. Because to get money, you have to spend it! Important thing to remember is value. A lot of people likes to keep money in their bank and guard every penny sacredly like a scrooge. That is not healthy. Spend it on stuff that gives you value! If you love a specific band, then go buy their concert ticket. If you like a specific dress, go buy it because of how it makes you feel. For example, I spent a hefty sum on my pair of shoes, simply because I wear it everyday. Spending money on stuff that you can use everytime is definitely worth the value. Same as education, like our Artiste Training Course. Some of my students are smart to realise the wide practicality usage from the Artiste Training Course into their everyday lives. We even have top managers who use our course to hone on his communication skills. That's how we should define value on spending: seeing the practical usage of something purchased in the maximum areas of our lives.

Support road-side vendors - value for money
 2) Fix what is fixable
Some of us will immediately throw away stuff that is spoilt, torn or in defect. That is what we call waste. If that stuff can be fix, then fix it! For example, my expensive shoes. After wearing it for more than a year, it got torn on the soles. Instead of throwing it away and buy a new pair, I rather spend a minimal amount of money to fix it. Hey, even a poor shoe cobbler should benefit the profit of your favourite pair of shoes, not always those giant shoe corporations. Think of how you can put your money on small-time businesses too.

Put your 2 palms together -
that's how small your stomach!
 3) Food - divide your lunch for dinner too
Delicious nasi goreng - but can u save the half portion for later?

A lot of us love to eat outside, at fancy cafes or just another fast-food joint. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so eat heartily. For lunch, you could actually save some money. If you're buying outside, always eat half portion and save the other half for your dinner. Especially for aspiring artistes who are conscious of their weight, this is a good money-saving practice. Open and put the 2 palms of your hands together in an upward facing position. That's actually the size of your stomach! Notice how small it is! That's exactly how much you should eat, which is way less than what you bought outside. Usually fast-food restaurants give you more, like double this or double that. Think twice before wallowing everything in. You can simply save the other half for dinner later.

Only RM100 to travel monthly
 4) Travel - use public transport to the max
As a new aspiring artiste, you may not have the means to have a car yet. But then again, what's wrong with using public transportation? Our LRT system covers a majority of city centres, so we should all take advantage of this system. There are a few casting and production companies which are located quite near to the LRT station. Even if some don't, you could still take the train to the nearest spot and take a cab from there. Now a lot of shopping centres like Mid Valley and Ikea provide free shuttle buses at various LRT stations. So plan your journey to your casting session ahead, in order to save a few bucks.

You need to slow down your pace
5) Leisure - slow down your pace
A lot of us have different hobbies and leisure styles to occupy our free time. But there's one objective of leisure - that is to relax! Some people find relaxing very tough. The reason is due to their "fast-paced" lifestyle, which is further propagated in our media, where everything can be achieved instantly and super-fast. Dream on! There's no such a thing. All truly good artistes will learn to slow down their pace. The whole fast-pace concept is to keep everyone from thinking, and just encourages you to do stuff blindly. That way, you will spend more - on cigarettes, on alcohol, watch more TV, buy more expensive stuff and waste that you don't really need. Think about it. Leisure time can be very simple and uncomplicated. Just slow down and contemplate.

6) Health - maintain a patient and positive spirit always
So many people spend money on healthcare these days. MLMs try to sell you green this and that, junk food is getting less sugar, even the health ministry is encouraging less sugar. But to me, that is pure waste. I personally love cakes and sweet stuff. That's the pleasure of life! Everytime when I order iced milk tea, I always remind the waiter to put in more milk please! Indulging yourself in food that you love shouldn't kill you. Maintaining a patient and positive spirit is more important for your health. Patience is important because an artiste needs to wait, sometimes long periods of time, for your next project. A positive spirit should encourage you to be nice to yourself and others (when needed) and keep on working to improve yourself.

7) Investment - education and property are safer
As a business entity, Artiste Training Course needs to have a place where we can place all potential students comfortably during classes. Some students prefer the park area where we used to conduct at Taman Paramount, near the LRT, where it's open air. Variety is key in appeasing different types of students. We rented a small apartment in wangsa maju before, simple place and not too extravagant because of the reasonable price we are charging for the courses. The flat owner was kind to lease out the living room for us to conduct the classes as and when we need to, so that helps in our cost-saving in which we pass on the savings to our students. Our new place in Taman Desa Melati is much bigger and caters more to college students, therefore the price for our courses there is much much higher. As for myself, I don't live near to any of the places where we conduct the classes but they are all near the LRT stations so it's convenient for students who don't have cars to attend our classes.

Budget, budget, budget!
8) Buy what you need only
Budget is key. As an artiste, after clinching a job, tends to overspend, which is fine. Its a way to reward yourself. But there's got to be a limit. So the fundamentals apply: buy what you need. As a human being, all we really need in terms of physical are: food, a roof over our head and a job. But as artistes, budget is fundamental because jobs can be low at certain months. So budget, budget, budget! Invest in stuff that will last with you forever. And remember: love takes lesser effort than hate.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Jealousy - do you more harm than good

Since opening this blog, I received almost 10 -20 anonymous comments daily. Of course, I prefer not to publish these anonymous comments (even if they are positive comments) because they usually either wrote some celebrity's name or some cynical comment. So it's safer and easier for me to assume all anonymous comments to be non-contributive to my blog. There are also some past students I knew with some very bad attitude (you know who you are), and perhaps he or she feeling dejected or jealous of other students (or even me, God forbids) who are better than them and just post these anonymous comments thinking I will read them?

Only cowards hide under anonymity
Sorry to inform you again, I don't even have time to go thru anonymous comments, for I have so many things to do! Because to save time and focus my energy on writing helpful articles for other really sincere aspiring artistes to read, I have enabled my blog to automatically delete all the cowardly anonymous comments. Cowardly because they don't even dare to reveal their names and blog address in the first place. It's sad why so many of these so-called aspiring artistes like to post anonymous comments thinking they will get any sort of attention. And seriously, time is too precious and rare to deal with them.

Only fools be jealous of other people
There's some talents in the industry who are just plain angry or dejected over their lack of jobs. So they seek to vent out their frustration on other people. These sort of talents do not wish to learn from their mistakes and always seek shortcuts in getting what they want in the entertainment industry. They either pretend to be interested to join our course, thinking for achieving their ambition quickly. They don't realise how much hardwork, time and learning goes in before actually getting a job (like the KFC commercial I did recently). And they like to belittle other people's achievements, thinking they can do better than you. (which they aren't, or else why would they post anonymous comments, right?)

Be brave enough to reveal yourself
If you truly want to be an artiste, my advice is not to be afraid. Open up yourself and show the world who you really are. That's the fact when you are an artiste, everybody is going to know you right? So how are you going to be an artiste when you stay anonymous? If you think by posting anonymous negative comments and getting away with it, you actually don't. Your conscience will stay with you because you know YOU posted it. And worst, this negative action eats inside of you and makes you even more bitter. For the rest of us here, we don't even care because what is there to care about when you don't even bother to put a name and your blog address to identify yourself? It's really stupid and time-wasting to be jealous of other people when you should be taking actions in advancing yourself and being more transparent.

A community to share and help others
The purpose I create this blog is to unite all other aspiring artistes and other people (not in artiste line) to come together and become a community to share helpful and contributive ideas. So being brave and showing the real you is important in your next step to becoming an artiste when posting a comment. At least the people reading this blog knows who you are. Consider this blog a platform for you to be brave enough to share your thoughts and perhaps even gain some publicity for yourself as a good talent. I will not allow others to belittle your comments if they are sincere and helpful (that's why again I don't even publish comments for certain blog entries here). Unless of course, these anonymous commentators want to continue to be jealous of other people and be bitter. Don't blame me for your bitterness and jealousy. I have already told you so here.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

How to Exude Charisma Effortlessly

A real artiste will not act out charisma. He/she will exude charisma naturally. The purpose of this entry is to inform my readers here that a really good artiste is a person that is charismatic too. What is charisma? Charisma - a special personal quality or power of an individual making him/her capable of influencing or inspiring large numbers of people.

In my Artiste Training Course, I will teach this module to my aspiring students. Having charisma is essential in becoming a good artiste. To make charisma easier to grasp, basically I break it into these parts:

1)Status 2) Clothes 3) Sex 4)Age 5) Size & Posture 6)Speech 7) facial expression & non-verbal communications.

Status - either you're born in it or aspire to reach it

If you're from a financially stable family, it's easier for you to pursue the life of an artiste. Money is essential to help you tide those months when you have no work. What happen if you don't have money? Then status has to be imprinted in your mind: the way you think of yourself and how you approach this so-called life. The poor can act rich without being perceived as a gold-digger. It's very slippery to tackle status, because it's got NOTHING to do with your capability to perform as an artiste, but a lot to do with simply charisma.

Clothes - wear it like you mean it. Charismatic people knows how to use their clothes to exude themselves. For an actor, you will wear the types of clothes that fit the character you are auditioning for. For a model, simplicity is key in making your whole appearance looks "flexible" enough for any type of clothes.

Sex - male or female, we're all equals. Men will usually be more daring in expressing their "charisma" (different levels) compared to females in general for the sole purpose that men is considered more proactive. But I believe both sexes can be equally charismatic.

Age - the older you get, the better. Like wine, good tastes come with age. Don't fret if you are young, for you have more energy and time is by your side. But older, more mature talents should be able to control themselves more and more patient in any situation.

Size & Posture - truly charismatic people are aware of their body language. Actors and models should be very aware of this, for every gesture may suggest certain nuances. Size matters too, for the taller and more toned you are, people in general looks up more to you. But the smaller and more petite form are still able to exert their charisma in other less obvious ways.

Speech - essential tool in communicating complex ideas. Used wisely can generate the intended results. Best keep it polite, short and to the point.

Non-verbal communication is the most unnoticed form of exuding your charisma. Simply sit in style or gesture someone politely to allude your charisma. Making others feel easy being around you is the point.

In conclusion, all the factors above are simply just an outward manifestation of the complex nature of charisma. Charisma is something that I believe you need to feel it within you truly before anything else. Even if you lack one or more of the factors mentioned above, you can still be charismatic in your own way, provided you know which is it.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Why Everyone Should Learn Some Star Qualities

Harmony - reality or illusion?
One incident inspired me to write this entry. Lately, I got an invitation for a free trial membership for a gym club. I was suspicious very early on because the gym consultant told me that I should bring my own key and padlock for my locker. Huh? When I met her I asked "Are the gym members there rough and rowdy?" She said no.

Usually in a social area like a gym, you get to observe people. Most of the members expect to be looked at, maybe due to their own self-obsessed image of their bodies being very good (which I don't care to look except at myself). I was a gym member for 2 years before so I know the type of people. I went to the weight machine and discovered I'm over 5kg from what I previously thought my actual weight was!

My earlier question to the gym consultant was validated because on my second day, one of the members shouted madly at one of the staff, creating a high-octane scene at the main exercise area. She shouted words like penis, touching, stupid etc. To my horror, I stopped my weight training and looked. The drama is juicier than the one on TV for sure. Then it got me thinking why she acted that way.

Argue, shout, blame, headache!

To be honest, I never liked going to gyms because you can find members there who can be very superficial and one-dimensional. Perhaps the mad lady who shouted at the consultant is actually angry of the impersonal ways everyone in the gym conducted themselves,. Everyone in gym just doing their own things without really socialising with each other. So many lonely souls in the sea of people.

In my heart, I do understand the pressures of their working lives nowadays. A lot of people are doing business corruptly and underhandedly, which leads to more people being dissatisfied and disconnected with the outside world. I am thankful that I was able to experience this drama in the gym as an outsider. (believe me, I got into such drama before) But it also saddens me, because we can all be better, except maybe we don't want to try anymore.

So what went wrong? I've decided to write my next entry "How to Exude Charisma Effortlessly".