Making excuses

It is better to offer no excuse than a bad one. – George Washington

I came across this quote today and it made me smile. I realised that I’m a firm believer in this. It’s ok to make excuses and it’s ok to even bullshit once in a while. But when people can see right through it, it’s best not to do it at all.

After working for more than 10 years, more often than not, I can tell when someone is trying bullshit their way out of something. Some people still use the lamest excuses and think they’re smart enough to get away with it. They might as well just say “my dog ate my homework!”

I’ve learned never to use a dumb excuse with someone who’s been around the block. Sometimes it’s best just to say sorry and tell them that you’ll get it done. Why bother trying to outsmart someone who’s probably already used every excuse there is in the book. When people do it with me, and I know I can’t call them on it, I just smile. I know somewhere down the line someone will call them on it, so why make it my problem.

Making excuses is a sign of immaturity, owning up to something takes courage.

Filofax Pocket – There’s a first time for everything 

*Warning: somewhat picture heavy post*

Ok so one of things I’ve been struggling with is the weight of my bag. My neck and back problems seemed to be coming back and they were definitely not pleasant when I had it in the past. So I did some downsizing and lightened the load. I did a post about it here.

One of the things I did was to move into a Pocket Filofax vs the Personal. I bought a Pocket Chameleon in black way back in 2013 but never successfully used it as a daily planner. I did use it to keep blog notes, book lists, quotes etc. So this time I thought let me give it a try.

I love the Chameleon. You can see how beautifully it still shines even after 6 years.


I decided not to use a major diary but instead used printable monthly inserts from Ray Blake ( Please check out his awesome website for free printable inserts in all shapes and sizes.

I printed them out on this lovely A4 pad I had from Paperchase. I printed them in a way that the calendar is on the plain side while I can write notes on the patterned side.


Finally I kept the bunch of notepaper and didn’t do much else. The notepaper is a mix of Filofax and Paperchase. I’ve kept the colourful ones on purpose so I can have different sections and find my note paper easily. I have my daily work task in a Levenger Circa Junior (something I’m trying for the first time).

I love that the Chameleon has a full length pocket at the back so I can stuff even A4 sized paper.

I’ve kept it simple. Now let’s see if this work.

Not all posts are created equal

Here’s a question…. What do you do when you know you’re writing a crappy post? 

Some days are off days but you still feel like writing anyway. You have no idea what you’re writing…. Just a bunch of thoughts strung together and some stuff about how you’re feeling, may be. But you know there’s just no point to the post.

So what do you do?

Well sometimes I think I just keep writing with the hope that I’m making some sense. Other times I’ll save it as a draft and come back and read it later. Some of those drafts definitely end up in the trash. But other times, I find ways to improve on what I was trying to say. I guess it’s a good system of filtering ideas. 

Do you just power through thinking it will head somewhere better in the end or just trash it? 

Lighten the load

Last week I woke up with this ache in my shoulder and an ugly pain in my arm. It’s not a new thing. I experienced this a few years ago as well. It had gotten really bad at the time and the doc did an MRI and concluded that I needed to stop lifting heavy things. I realized that I wasn’t really lifting anything new heavy but carrying my bag around was enough.

Since then I reduced the amount of load I carried but somehow over the last few months, I’ve fallen back into my old ways. Last weekend was the last straw that broke my back. (Pun intended). I was in so much pain!!

So that’s it. I’ve decided to minimize. I read somewhere that you shouldn’t carry more than 10% of your body weight. I’ve decided to make it 8%.

I could take the easy way out, carry a smaller bag or a non-leather bag. But that doesn’t work for me. I love tote bags and it’s taken me a long time to build the collection I have.  No way am I letting go of them. So then then the obvious choice is to empty out my bag.

First I made list of items and then I converted them into slim and light versions.

  1. The Filofax: I was carrying around Personal Malden. I keep a monthly calendar some bits of info and notepaper. I downsized to a Filofax Pocket size. I’ve never been able to use a pocket size before but I’m determined to make it work.
  2. The Make up bag: Seriously, I never touch up my make during the day. I never even really wear make up. The only thing I wear is eye liner. So I took everything else out. I kept an eye liner pen, one lipstick (Clinique chubby stick) and really tiny tube of sunscreen.
  3. Pens: I was carrying around several pens, pencils, highlighters. Took them all out. Left with one pen and one Sharpie.
  4. Wallet: Last but not least, the heaviest thing in my bag. I wish I could say it’s because there’s always a lot of cash…lol! It’s not the case. Old receipts, old cards, business cards, loyalty cards and a whole bunch of coins. Everything went out. I can’t bring myself to throw away my wallet, it’s a love leather continental, so for now emptying it as much as possible is my best bet.
  5. Book: These days I’m carrying around my study books. But even that, I’ve decided to leave the actual book at home and only carry the e-versions on my phone. If I feel I may be going somewhere to read, I may carry it.

So there you have it… no iPad, no receipts, no bulky stuff… nothing that I can live without.  Now, I just hope, I can keep it that way.