There’s going to be a 30% increase in the price of water and as a nation we find ourselves complaining. The complaining itself is not surprising as it’s something that has become a favourite national pastime.
The point of contention was this particular line “In response, Ms Indranee said that it all comes back to how people can increase their incomes, and how the revenue that comes into the household can be increased so “all the other things” can be managed.”
The speaker was Senior Minister of State of Finance, Indranee Rajah, in an interview on 938 Live. The uproar on social media poured in shortly after. If you haven’t had the chance to read the comments, let me just sum it up for you: MP talks smack again and is not worth her pay.
I’m no fan of politics and I have no cosy affiliations with the PAP. This article explores the topic of increasing your income to, at least, match the cost of living.
Here’s where I come in. This topic is very close to my heart. When the going gets tough, you can either whine about it or you could rise to the challenge.
Rising cost of living, inflation, depression, unaffordability, are perennial complaints. My dad talks about it, people my age talk about it, and I’m pretty darn sure by the time my kid comes of age to start paying his own bills, prices of resale flats in Pasir Ris will cross the million dollar mark, and he’s going to be talking about it. But that’s really part and parcel of life.
What have we been taught all our lives? Exams are hard, so study harder. Jobs are hard to get, so take the next step and upgrade yourselves. Want to find love but not getting the attention you want? Clean yourself up and shape up. So, why is this topic about increasing your salary to match the rising cost a big deal? What were you expecting?
We don’t need an MP to tell us this. We should already know this very clearly and if we hadn’t already done it maybe it’s time we should start looking at how we can increase our income to beat the rising cost. If the financial analysts and the people who are paid to forecast our economic climate are to believed, the 30% increase in water price is the least of our concern.
BUT I am not without empathy. To say “lets get more money” is easy when you aren’t working a minimal wage job in a company that intends to pay you as little as possible, keep you perpetually in poverty, so that you are powerless to leave. I feel you.
That’s where the real problem lies – Salary is not matching cost of living and people are unhappy. Understandably so, because salaried workers don’t have the time nor the skillset that allow them to earn beyond their day jobs; and for a highly paid government servant, who is supposed to speak out for the people, dropping lines like that will of course get you some less-than-friendly backlash.
I’m no politician and I’ve got real solid practical, grounded advice that you can use.
First, let’s look at the facts:
Fact 1: The problems are NOT going to change or go away.
Fact 2: Unless YOU change, the problems will persist.
Fact 3: If your job doesn’t give you an annual pay increment that surpasses inflation, you’re going to be poor all your life.
Fact 4: No one is going to help you. The financial aids are not handouts, and those that are, are meant for the extremely poor. You middle income peeps are the new poor that no one cares about.
Fact 5: You’re still going to whine about next increase in pricing whatever that may be.
Fact 6: You need another source of income if the current one is not within your control. Have you heard that the government is giving you 500 bucks to pay for courses to upgrade your skills? Have you used it yet? When’s the last time you picked up a new skill either for hobby or for work?
Fact 7: No one gives a shit about your complaints. Apparently 70% of those have voted against you in the last election. So…. What’s it gonna be, hombre? Die whining clutching your keyboard or make a change, today?
These are some practical steps that should help you break out of your minimal wage cycle.
Step 1. Reassess your skillsets. What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing?
Step 2. Convert some of your free time into productive money-making time. It doesn’t have to be much. Earning even 300 dollars more a month giving tuition or swimming lessons is worth something.
Step 3. Convert negative mindset into positive ones. Channel the time spent on complaining into looking for opportunities. Nobody likes to work with a whiner. So take that time to go network. Talk to people. Spread your name around. There is NO guarantee of success BUT whatever you do is better than being a keyboard warrior. Unless getting Facebook LIKEs gets you paid.
Step 4. Find like-minded people who can help you. Talk to me. Talk to someone positive. Talk to an old friend who is doing better than you. Put ego aside and tell someone you need help. A friend of mine told me this: “you got to let your friends be your friends. Don’t be afraid to ask. You will know who your friends are.” His name is Chester. He is a brilliant writer; go buy his books.
Step 5. See the change. Enjoy the change. Thank me later.
I’m here for you. I’m not your enemy. I don’t get paid for writing this. PAP is not going to give me a commendation letter either. I spent the last hour hammering this out because I want to see my fellow Singaporeans growing stronger together and not sit idly by in hopes for life to hand them a lucky break. Who’s with me?
Your friendly neighbourhood beer drinking kaki,
Eugene Tay | The Alpha Mind