Since 2014, I started to create a theme for every new year resolution I have. 2014 was #happier2014, and 2015 was #stronger2015. A new year is here, and I will call this year #juicy2016.
A little different than past years, there is no -er in 2016. These past years, it’s all about improving myself. To be happier, or stronger. But recently, I received a wake up call that I should be more productive, and that time to focus on improving is over.
It does not mean I stopped improving myself. Learning and improving is something we need to do until the day we are dead. I just shifted the focus a bit to being more productive.
Juicy come from the word juice, the extracted part of a fruit. I consider myself as a fruit, and 2016 is time for me to produce juices that can be consumed by the world.
According to dictionary.com, Juicy also means “very profitable, very interesting, and very appealing”. Those are what I wanted 2016 to be : profitable, interesting, and appealing. I wanted my businesses to be more profitable, and my works to become interesting and appealing.
The big goal : to produce savings worth at least IDR xx in 2016.
Notes : Sorry, I censored the number!
Which also means IDR xx on average each month. Breaking down the xx :
- xx from Coffeelogue.
- xx from Tentu Creative.
- ± xx monthly expenses.
- Extra income from other businesses as a bonus.
My main source of income is from Coffeelogue. I do design solutions to get extra income. More or less, I need in total about xx web design clients in one year, while making sure Coffeelogue runs well.
Meanwhile, I need plans to find clients. I can’t rely on my network only. I need to broaden my network.
Also, if possible, I want to franchise Coffeelogue, or even better : to open a new branch for Coffeelogue.
How to achieve the big goal
- Broaden my network.
Join communities. Attend conferences and seminars. Increase my presence in Coffeelogue.
- Advertise, online and offline.
Use channels such as Kaskus. Advertise on Coffeelogue. Find another channel to advertise, if possible, freely.
- Be healthy.
I can not achieve my goals if I ain’t healthy. I need to be fit all the time.
- Learn new skills.
Create mobile app. Talk to more people. Ask more questions.
- Be more responsive.
Do not afraid to take calls. Do not afraid to communicate with people. Do not wait to response text messages or whatsapp.
- Blog more.
Blogposts attract traffic to website, which increases my exposure and leads to more clients.
- Create more art.
Designing things makes me happy, and that’s what I should do on my free time. It improves my creativity, adds to my portfolio, and keeps me mentally healthy.
The create 100 things challenge
I am joining a challenge by Justin Jackson, called the create 100 things challenge. Basically he asked people to make 2016 the year of creating, and to challenge ourselves to create a lot more than past years. 100 is a number he set for himself and everyone is free to decide their own numbers.
I created a worksheet to help me track myself in this challenge. Below is the worksheet :
I separate things I create by 5 Grade. A is for the most complex project such as an app, and E is the simplest project such as a blogpost or instagram post.
I have to admit, this challenge really inspires me to be creative and to work harder.
#Juicy2016 Self improvement checklist
- Daily devotion every single day.
- Exercise / Go to gym at least 3 times a week.
- Read and finish 10 books a year.
- At least one blogpost per week.
- Design one artwork per two weeks.
- Do not eat after 10pm.
Fingers crossed for an amazing year. Wish me luck and good luck for all your resolutions! And dear friends and families, please do remind me to always focus and keep my life on track. Thank you and God bless!
Ysteven in category Me, My Ego, and My Thoughts.
After a successful #happier2014, I entered 2015 with huge hopes and spirit. I imagined it will be a great year for me, with me overcoming my mental health problems. Unfortunately, I was wrong.
Yes, 2015 has it’s ups and downs. I am happy and thankful for all of them : The ups are so awesome, and the downs are full of lessons.
The ups were the progress of Coffeelogue. I reached my revenue target, and it’s performance is better than what I expected. I managed to go on some unforgettable holiday trip. I managed to get into interesting projects.
The downs were my health problems. I still can’t be 100% free from my mental health problems, and that leads to some failed projects, which I really am sad about. It crushes my spirit. I feel like back in 2014, where I got relieved from my job because of my health problems, and spend some months in nothingness.
Back in college – and even in high school – I was capable of producing great things : website, graphic design, apps, etc. I managed to finish a lot of projects from various clients. It feels good to be able to do that. I feel like awesome. What’s driving me is the fear of being mediocre. I want to be a superstar, not a mediocre person. But since 2013 – 2015, where my health problems are worsened, I struggled even to be mediocre.
Those struggles does not stop me from achieving my goals and dreams. After some time off from projects to relieve myself from depression and bad mental health, I managed to start doing projects again in November, and I finished it. It gives me confidence that I can finish things, and that I can produce great things.
That’s why 2016 is the year for me to prove the doubters wrong. I will show the world the Yohanes Steven I used to be : full of spirit, able to work hard and produce great things. I failed to do so in almost all 2015, but the momentum is there in late 2015, and I am going to use that momentum to make 2016 an amazing year.
Now, I am ready for #Juicy2016.
Ysteven in category Me, My Ego, and My Thoughts.
I’ve been wanting to write about this for a long time, and after last night’s quality conversation with my friends about life in 2014, I decided it’s time to put all the thoughts into this writing.
In the turnover of 2013 into 2014, I set a goal for 2014 called #happier2014. I wanted 2014 to be happier than 2013, which has been full of sorrow for me. In truth, 2014 was a magical roller coaster ride. I’ve hit the major downs, and in the end I’ve hit the major ups as well.
The life changing events.
Early in the year, no matter how much determined I was to make this year better, I still found this life as a never-ending struggle. I struggled to get into my feet, and I got stuck with my health problems.
My mental health conditions continue to get the better of me. I constantly collapse in the office, and sometimes I even get out of control, scream like a baby, and hitting myself in the head. This has been going since in the middle of 2013, and it’s not stopping in 2014.
Those conditions forced me to leave my job. I was the director of an IT consultant company, and the security in my office won’t even let me come there because I could disturb the others with my conditions. I have no choice but to leave my job and employees, which is both something I really love.
The months of nothingness.
In the following 6 months after leaving my job, I got stuck in nothingness. I basically has no job, and the only job description I have in my head is : To get better. The worst part of it? I have no idea how to get better.
I don’t even know what’s going on with me. I don’t know if it’s a devil inside of me, and I should go to the priest to cure me. I don’t know if it’s a mental health problems, and I should go to the psychiatrist to cure me. I have no idea, and by the way, I’ve tried both and it’s not working.
So, for a few months, I was just enjoying my daily life : Start the day by delivering my sister to her office, work on my dreams without any progress, and en the day picking up my sister from her office. That goes on and on for months.
It seems fun, having nothing to think about. But it’s not. It’s one of the worst moment of my life. Because instead of having nothing to think about, I constantly think about how foolish and weak I am, and how unworthy I am to live. I even started to think about killing myself, and have enjoyed hurting my hands with keys and nailclippers.
God works in magical way
In those days of nothingness, I spent a lot of time dreaming. I dreamed of how my coffee shop should be. I dreamed of what my life would be in the future. I dreamed of how I should treat my customers if I have my own coffee shop.
I always thought those dreams are meaningless, until the Eureka! moment arrived : I can make my dreams come true!
Why did I always thought my dreams are meaningless? Because I thought having a coffee shop needs billions of dollars, and I will never afford it. I always thought I don’t have the ability to run a coffee shop in me. I doubted myself, and I doubted that God can make a miracle.
Until the moment arrives. After my therapist appointment, I accompanied my mom to her doctor in Jln. Raden Saleh, Cikini. Because the queue line was very long, I decided to take a walk by myself around the area. It was then that I see a small coffee shop, decorated in simple white. It was Ya Kun Kaya Toast. I see how small and minimalist it is, that I realized that I don’t need billions to have a coffee shop.
So I got inspired and began rewriting the business plan for my coffee shop, the one I already wrote years ago. I redo everything and came up with a more feasible one : IDR 400.000.000 and 20 months of payback period. I think I can find a loan if it’s IDR 400.000.000, at least from my big family, so I presented the business plan to them.
They agreed to help, seeing my awful conditions of nothingness and glad I’ve found back my passion. I started to find a space for my coffee shop, and the struggling continues. I couldn’t find a good one in my budget. When I found a nice spot, it was far over my budget, and when I found one inside my budget, it was not good.
Then a moment, of which I believed was a miracle, came to me in a flash. There is a spot near my house available for rented! It was a nice spot, and it was inside my budget. More over, it was really near from my house, and it will be easier to manage. I could also use my house as a warehouse for stocks!
Negotiation begins, and with the grace of God, I finally settled for a nice price. Price I can afford, in a spot I love.
So the fun thing began : Pre-opening of the coffee shop. I started by writing down a long list of items to prepare for my coffee shop, and spent the months ahead buying them and checking down the long to do list, one by one.
It was full of ups and downs. A lot of frustrating moments happens in the pre-opening, and I still collapsed from time to time. But something is different right now : I believed that things will get better. And no words can explain how important that is.
I was glad I got a chance for a holiday before I opened my coffee shop. Just like the other family holiday for me, most of the places we visit are caves of Mary and churches to pray at. I was so glad I have this journey, for I could pray for strength and surrender my future to God.
The happiest day of my life
15 August came. Coffeelogue is officially opened, and it was the happiest day of my life.
Coffeelogue was fully-packed with around 50 person, which come from my lovely family, my friends, my neighbours, and friends of my family.
It happens just the way I dreamed of : people I love the most are there around me, and I can make them happy by serving them, providing them with food and beverages, and sharing my joy with them.
So I wrote a note of why it’s the happiest day of my life. And it’s not just because my dreams came true. It’s because I couldn’t think of any bad thing could happen. I believed only good thing will happen, and I was not worry about anything. It will be on my next post in the blog : Lessons I learned from the happiest day of my life.
There are also a lot of amazing moments worth to mention in 2014 :
- I got to travel to a lot of amazing places in Central Java and Jogjakarta.
- I got to speak at an entrepreneurship seminar at UNIKA Atma Jaya.
- I got to host a small New Year Eve party at Coffeelogue.
And so those are the highlights of my life in 2014. I will also write about my plans for #STRONGER2015. I hope this sharing can be helpful to others, and if you have anything you want to ask or share with me, don’t worry to contact me.
Ysteven in category Me, My Ego, and My Thoughts.
This post was written on easter 2014.
Today, I want to tell a story about my belief.
I was born on a Catholic family. A very strict Catholic family, which sometimes frustrates me. It frustrates me how strict they are to rules and regulations in Catholic Church.
Sometimes, this frustration led me to anger at Jesus. I am disappointed seeing people so strict to the rule that they do not care about what matters : what people feels.
As I grow older, I understood their strictness. Although I disagree with them, I practiced them. Secretly, I even became one of them with my disappointment towards a friend of mine who disobey the Catholic rule.
But as a Catholic, there are a some things outside the Catholic rule that I believe in.
I believe that there is heaven for everyone, not only for Christians. A Christian friend of mine openly attack me for this belief, and that makes me mad. I believe that Lord is too kind to let someone off from heaven just because he is not a Christian. I think that if “Lord” really only let Christians inside heaven, I will not believe in Him.
I believe that people believe what they want to believe, and I believe no one should be forced to believe in something. People should respect each other believe. No one should force religion and belief to others.
But that story of what I believe in is not what I really want to tell right now.
Yesterday, my bipolar disorder attack me. I suddenly feel like my head wants to explode in anxiety, thinking how little I have achieve in this life compared to another people. Unfortunately, I lost the battle and I can’t go to church on Good Friday.
Earlier today, while watching a movie in cinema, I feel sick. I feel the same attack as yesterday. Thank God, I win the battle today. I didn’t collapse and I can celebrate Easter Vigil by going to the church.
What makes me win today is the new belief I got, which was inspired from last Thursday’s White Thursday mass at Theresia Church. At the mass, the Pastor told me about how Eucharist have the power of transformation : to transform hate into love, sadness into joy. I believe that I am going to be better if I attend the church instead of collapsing at home. I believe I will be transformed after tonight’s mass, and I will have new power and joy.
And today I am the witness of Eucharist’s power of transformation. Even before going to the church, I already feel the excitement of how all my anxiety and sorrow will be transformed into joy, blessings, and hope.
I don’t want to talk a lot about how Euchaist have that power of transformation, for I am not a preacher. I only tell stories of my experience. But if you asked me what I believe in, the transformation power comes through the communion, where I receives the body of christ as a symbol of union with Jesus.
For everything I have, it was from the Lord. Through Eucharist, Jesus gives me happiness, joy, and freed me from anxiety.
So… If Eucharist have that big of power, the question remains : So if you are not in Church, you can’t talk to God?
Of course not. I believe that Eucharist is a celebration of the union between me with God. Underline the word “celebration”. I believe that God is very good and caring for us, that He is here all the time, not only on Eucharist. He is our best friend, helper, and saviour. It’s just that sometimes, we need to celebrate things with our best friend, for the friendship to grow.
This is what I believe. If what you believe is different, it’s okay… Because I believe God wanted us to love one another, no matter what we believe in.
Ysteven in category Me, My Ego, and My Thoughts.
I am currently reading “One small step can change your life”, which is also known as The Kaizen Way by Robert Maurer. In the second chapter of the book, Robert tips us about the benefit of asking small questions.
Basically, Robert talk about how questions forced our brain to work, and when our brain work, we unconciously become motivated to do things.
I think it makes sense. These small questions, such as “What is the color of the car beside you when you park this morning”, can be a good exercise for our brain. And just like our body, a well exercised brain perform better.
Not only in this book, my uncle also once told me about the importance of brain training via small questions. He would ask me a lot of small question, such as “Where do you think the car in front would go? To the left or to the right?”
Now I understand why.
Ysteven in category Me, My Ego, and My Thoughts.
Three months has passed since my life started crumbling down. Three months has passed since my mental health condition took everything away from me : my career, my master degree, my relationships with colleague and friends.
At first, I thought losing it all was easy. I thought it means I am finally free from all the stress I couldn’t handle on my career back then. I thought I finally got the chance to do anything I want, to pursue my passion and my dreams. Three months later, I realize I was wrong. It was not easy at all. Losing it all crushed me inside and out.
It took away my confidence. I began to think that I am destined to failure, like I have done so.
It took away my spirit. My health condition took away my courage to meet or communicate people, resulting in a lonely and depressed me.
It took away my passion. I get used to feeling depressed that I forget how to feel happy and passionate.
And the most dangerous of all, it took away my will to live. At the lowest point, I even prayed to God to take away my life.
But this is not the end. This is not the end at all.
Nowadays, I feel better than I used to. Even though I still have some problems, I rarely hear sounds in my head, which has been huge problems in the last year or so. I began to get better control of my mind and my body, although sometimes I still lose it.
But I am positive. I will get better. I will get stronger. I need to get better and stronger.
Here are a few things that keeps me positive and keeps my fighting spirit alive :
First. I am very grateful for the blessings that I have, which has descended from heaven in the form of endless support from family and friends. When I spent days lying uselessly in bed, I got families that brings me food and drinks. When I feel depressed, I got friends that cheer me up and put a smile in my dull face. I want to repay their kindness and I will not let their efforts be in vain.
Second. I have dreams. It’s time to reignite those dreams. Even though I have to start from the bottom again, even though I have experienced failure, even though I have lost a lot of time and effort previously, I have to rise up and start pursuing those dreams. For it was our dreams that makes us special.
Third, and the most important of all, is God.
Ysteven in category Business.
I recently read this article saying that no business last forever. The article talks about “The Innovator’s Dillema”, in which Clayton Christensen talks about how a big company get too dependent on their cash-cow products and services, making them less innovative.
In the article, Facebook is said to be pivot-ing to another business concept and becoming a Bank instead. The explanation is very make sense that it is kinda creepy to hear.
The article inspired me to think, how we often become scared to start a business because we don’t think it is big enough. The fact is, if a successful business such as facebook needs innovation in business model, what about the not-so-successful?
The idea was to start. Start doing business, and we will meet customers, ideas will popped up, and we can always innovate our business model.
Always be open minded, it is crucial.