My struggling time ... 2005
Morning ... I was clearing some stack of papers and found this piece of notice ... from DBKK.
Oh boy ... the rush of emotion inside me, seeing this piece of 'old' paper which I still dearly keeping it.
The year was 2005 ... Christmas time, end of 2005 to be precise. I was married ... my wife is expecting a baby-boy ... and my pockets were empty!! Totally broke ... with debts all over. I have to survive with my mere salary of RM3k plus (was still with Inti Sabah ... but moved to Ins. Sinaran in 2006 for better salary and tuition purposes) ...
I started to goreng-keropok in 2005. I started as I got to know my Sabah's bro-in-law (my wife's sis hubby) who is a food-ingredients distributor. So ... he sells the raw keropok (from Kelantan) to me and I started to goreng to sell to shops and ... yes, pasar-malam. The 2005 Christmas Carnival ... at Gaya Street was a good experience ... full with sweat ... pain ... and tears.
I did not stop even a single day ... everyday will be goreng-goreng ... but I was NOT in stock-marker yet. I got myself a INTI colleague as partner. Another one joined me then ... 3 of us, trying to build the biz from stretch without ANY knowledge!! Sheer determination ... and looking back, it is kinda SILLY. Haha ... but, it is a very good painful experience, mind you.
Today ... if you are in KK, drop-by the popular Gaya Street. For me, I will be sure to go over ... buy items from these street-vendors. They put-up the stalls ... for few hours to earn a living. If you are one of them ... you will understand.
WHY am I going into goreng-keropok biz?
Look ... I was broke, zero knowledge in finances and zero knowledge in biz. I started to read about RDPD ... on moving out of Employee-quadrant(I was a teacher since I graduated ... nothing wrong with that ... just that I was financially-idiot) ... and giving more tuition to be in S-quadrant.
Business? What is that? Creating a system ... so that we could grow it and let others work for us!! How naïve I was ... so simple? Really?
It was tough ... really tough ... to start with. With zero capital, zero knowledge ... and NO ONE helping much, I braved myself to START. JUST DO IT mentality. Haha ... really shy to write more on my stupidity back then. I started to read about doing-biz ... and self-help to change my FINANCIAL MINDSET.
They said ... it is ALL in the mind. Partially true ... as without the right mindset, one will NOT start anyway.
But ... they did not tell us about EXTREME hardwork, failures ... insults by others ... they didn't put in real painful stories for many to FEEL how difficult and tough it is to be in biz ... and stock-markets too. More on the pain of stock-markets stories by me ... one day.
I will post those few pictures taken during those time ... I do have a simple digital-camera to record some of events ... and it is be 'emotional' for me to view them ...
I sat there ... recalling how I struggled, spent days preparing for the set-up of stalls. I bought generator, a large umbrella ... tables and containers. This small keropok-biz ended in 2008 when I was into market-crash ... and lost all my strength to carry-on by myself. The stock-market crash in 2008 punished a newbie like me... being in markets and lost 70% of my small capitals. My biz-partners left me in 2006, actually ... as I was too determined to work hard whereas ... well, they are not as hungry.
I was living to the quote "BE FOOLISH. BE HUNGRY" ... I did not stay hungry ... but I think I m still stay foolish. Thanks Steve Job for that quote. I was not aware of who Steve Job was back in 2006, ok? I knew NO ONE .. not even Warren Buffett ... only the few books I could afford to buy and read.
Bought a book during sales ... Steve Job's quotes ... for my collection (of books). I will look through these books when I retired.
Perhaps ... to listen to this clip again.
Anyway .. the year was 2005 ... so, it is 11 years since I started to JUST DO IT and taken steps to move into FINANCIAL FREEDOM. I am not financially free YET (waiting for that crash) .. but recalling back 2005, it is making me emotional.
I was full with emotions just now when I started this post ... the PAIN I went through in 2005 could never be able to describe in words or just a post here. It could be seen as FOOLISH to go into keropok-biz as I was still teaching MATHS in college ... but hey, at times ... when we are desperate, we will do whatever it takes to CHANGE ourselves, right?
Never look down on those pasar-malam stalls vendors ... they might be small, at least they earn a living to feed their kids. I was there ... I will always remember. I was different as I was so-called educated and still have a teaching-job!! If I do not have a full-time job, PERHAPS ... I could be more successful ... as I will have to push myself to be biz-man ... and learn the ups-downs of the culture, strategies and hard-work. My networks would be my platform to expand ... I will never know.
I QUIT my 2005 keropok-venture ... deep in pain. I cried, of coz. I failed to keep my partners and one of them, Daniel Tan no longer a friend. I lost a friend, indeed. I was too hungry back then.
I lost my capital ... and years of hardwork. I sold the umbrella, generators etc etc to recoup some losses. It was a total loss of everything ... EXCEPT experiences of hardwork, being foolish ... and determined.
From 2005 to 2008, I spent my waking hours to goreng-keropok. Packing ... drive my small kancil to sell to shops and bowling alleys(during nights til midnights!). I went to Institute Sinaran ... teaching A-level Math in 2006 ... and tuition classes picking-up, and I slowly reduced my hours in the failing biz ...
My aunt SK consoled me ... and said perhaps that is not the biz meant for me. I m good with my Math and pens ... not pans ... and I should move on to search for my strength!!
A wake up call in 2008 when ... against many who advised me in 2007, not to go into stock-market(too risky) ... I lost so much in 2008. My financial situation was so bad ... that the PAIN of surviving was really un-bearable!!
What makes me think I could pull myself up again ... I do not have the rights to talk about biz anymore to anyone as ... many will remind me of my failures and those critics will be glad to remind us of our pain.
If 2005 I struggled to start ... failed in 2006 ... started to be in stock-market in end-2007, failed in 2008 ... I do not see the light ... the days were very very heavy. End of month is a struggle to pay the bills (tho much smaller back then compared to my current, crazy!)
Today I could look back ... but the pain is still there, to be honest.
I am still struggling ... just on different level, different environment ... different situation. I will be patient now ... as I have used 10 years plus to build my foundation in FINANCIAL MINDSET. It is that loooong ... 10years ... and I could say that I just started to see some light ...
Thanks for reading ... I lost my plot as I m rushing out for my lunch.
coffee-date : 4pm today, I have another date with a very experienced trader. So glad he agreed to meet me to share experiences.
e-meeting tonight 9pm : book-sharing on Ho Kok Mun's book. Everyone is welcomed and the link will be sent to
Actually, I will prefer e-meeting to tell more of my "Gaya Street" stories. Haha.
Have a nice Sunday.