Getting To Know Myself Better with the help of Gretchen Rubin

So I decided I like reading multiple books at one time. Did I mention that nowadays non-fiction, self-enrichment, inspirational books are my cup of tea? And did I mention my love for fun quizzes? So other than Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua, I’m also currently reading The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin, who I realised is a very intelligent young woman. The following questions was a quiz she had posted on her blog The Happiness Project to help readers to reflect and get to know themselves more thoroughly.

If something is forbidden, do you want it less or more?
Most likely I would want it less, because I’m a goody-two-shoes. But if I really really have a burning desire for it, I might want it more.

Is there an area of your life where you feel out of control? Especially in control?
Oh yes. I think my time management is totally out of control. I’m addicted to Googling and doing unimportant things instead of taking care of my priorities. I know this is something I should be able to stop, but I just can’t. I also feel as if I’m very unaccomplished and lazy (which is probably the truth) and unorganized.

If you unexpectedly had a completely free afternoon, what would you do with that time?
I guess I would read, take photographs, edit pictures, Google or watch movies or videos on Youtube. And listen to music. Just relaxing things in my room with air-conditioner and the blinds drawn down.

Are you comfortable or uncomfortable in a disorderly environment?
Sometimes I feel comfortable, sometimes not. I guess it depends on my mood for that particular time.

How much time do you spend looking for things you can’t find?
A lot of precious time. If I lose something, especially something really important, I will ransack my entire house just to find it. I’ll look for this object relentlessly until it is found or declared gone.

Are you motivated by competition?
Oh yes, competition is my main motivation. Even ambition is second to this. But sometimes, competition is so stressful to me (most likely because I stress myself).

Do you find it easier to do things for other people than to do things for yourself?
Yes, definitely. If I know someone’s expectations of me or that they are expecting something good from me, I’ll put in a lot of effort to do it. But if there’s nothing to push me on except for myself, I’ll feel more lax.

Do you work constantly? Or think you should be working?
I don’t work constantly, but I constantly think I should be working.

Do you embrace rules or flout rules?
Embrace rules. Refer to point one about me being a goody-two-shoes.

Do you work well under pressure?
Yes, but then again sometimes pressure will drive me nuts.

What would your perfect day look like?
In the morning, I’ll wake up early but not too early. Have English breakfast, and spend my morning and afternoon reading, taking and editing pictures, listening to music and watching movies in my bed in my air-conditioned room.

How much TV do you watch in a week (include computer time spent watching videos, movies, YouTube)?
Hmmm… Approximately around one hour per day, some more some less, so around 8 hours a week.

Are you a morning person or a night person?
Night. I like to think myself as an owl.

What’s more satisfying to you: saving time or saving money?
Both are satisfying to me. But if I have to choose, it’s the former, because it’s more difficult for me to accomplish compared to the latter.

Do you like to be in the spotlight?
I like being in people’s attention, but I’m easily nervous. So no, I rather not be in the spotlight.

Is your life “on hold” in any aspect? Until you finish your thesis, get married, lose weight?
My life is always on hold when I have homework or examinations around the corner. The typical life of a student.

What would you do if you had more energy?
Organize my room, exercise.

If you suddenly had an extra room in your house, what would you do with it?
Turn it into a cozy corner with shelves of my books, and prints of typography and photography. There will be beanbags and sofas, and the floor will be hopefully carpeted. I will spend my time in there reading, dozing, sleeping, and reading.

What people and activities energize you? Make you feel depleted?
Normally activities that interest me energize me, and activities that is boring to me makes me feel depleted. People don’t affect my energy level. I’m immune to people. 😀 But do take note, activities that interest me or depletes me isn’t always the same as most people. My classmates think I’m weird because of my preferences.

Is it hard for you to get rid of things that you no longer need or want?
YES. I’m a hoarder, and what do hoarders do? Hoard. If I’m really determined on getting rid of things, I can manage to get rid of unimportant, useless things. But normally I’ll manage to find am excuse for every single object, and at the end of the day I got rid of nothing.

Do you get frustrated easily?
YES. I’m easily frustrated and easily provoked and almost always grumpy.

On a typical night, what time do you go to bed? How many hours of sleep do you get?
Normally I’ll sleep around 11pm, and probably get a nice seven hours of sleep.

If at the end of the year, you had accomplished one thing, what is the one accomplishment that would make the biggest difference to your happiness?
I guess it would be organizing my life and getting my life on track. Which means no clutter, good studying skills and grades, systematic and efficient life with time for relaxation and fun.

Getting To Know Myself Better with the help of Gretchen Rubin

Thoughts on Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

Happy 2013!
So if you paid attention to my blog, you’ll realize that I have updated my Books To Read list. My book genre preferences have expanded, and now I’m no longer solely interested in fiction, but also in nonfiction books such as memoirs and self-enrichment books. I have managed to surprise myself, but I’m pleased with the new selection of books.

On my list is this must-read book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua, who writes about her parents disciplining her and how she disciplines her daughters. I must admit some of her methods are a little extreme (from what I’ve heard of; I’m still on Chapter Four) but her methods and her daughters’ successes make me feel lazy and unaccomplished. Which is why, I’m going to change for the better! (Hai-yah!)
Here are some of the rules I’m setting myself to improve and discipline myself (and probably will keep adding some more throughout the days).

1) Drink at least 8 glasses of water. (This is something I lack of but is important to my well-being. Assuming that I sleep for 7 hours each day, I have 17 waking hours, which mean that I have to drink a glass every 2 hours.)

2) Follow a timetable.

3) Study everyday. (This excludes homework, and includes reading textbooks, notes and doing sums or practices.)

4) Eat healthily.

5) Exercise!

6) DO NOT PROCRASTINATE. (Uhuh, this is very important. Refer to point 2.)

7) Read for at least half an hour everyday. (Excluding newspapers)

8) Work hard and smart.

9) Play piano everyday for 30 minutes. (Scales, exam pieces before some random pieces)

10) Keep my room clutter-free and do not accumulate. For every new possession, get rid of something you don’t need. (Excludes books.)


The list will go on, but for now I’m going to stop here.


A/N on 27th April 2013: This did not happen. But I’m working on it.

Thoughts on Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother