Technically October isn’t over, and there is still a big event in the pipeline – but I need to recognize the achievements I have made already – just so I don’t lose my mind! There is the saying to push your limits and grow- I really think October was that for me.
While my “grind report” for the month will be historically low – the amount of networking and learning I have done has been off the charts.
##Started Off With Wife’s Hometown
Went to see my wife’s hometown family for the second time, ever. The first time was when we got married in October 2013. Three years later and things are pretty much the same there. It was a bit cold and the family was really warm. Biggest difference is we have 2 kids to take with us now. And her dad, our kid’s grandfather, has been such a blessing.
For me, I was a bit stressed out there – I don’t feel to “fit in” too much and it was such a packed house my “western” habits were squeezed with overloaded bathrooms, bedrooms, and living space. The whole personal space differences between China and the West was highlighted here. Wendy told me also that Chinese family and friends expect guests to try their homes as if it was their own. That means, don’t expect the family to find blankets for you or explain where things are in the house. You instead need to fish through everything and “make yourself at home” on your own. Not sure if others can relate to that here.
##Then From Cold North China to Hot Thailand
After the approximate week for National holiday in hometown, I flew down to Shenzhen, spent a night in an empty house. That was a strange mind-blowing night as I am used to having crying babies, in-laws, and wife around. Woke up a few times deep in the night expecting to see my family around.
Early morning rush to the Hong Kong International Airport to fly out to Thailand. DCBKK conference was red hot – jam packed with meetups, networking, and overwhelming amounts of learning. I mean, that is what I knew I was signing up for, and love it.
On top of this, am also doing the “normal work” I do. The merger with Unipro just happened on Oct 1 and Ray and I have been working out how to streamline our client base and making a CRM for the HK agency work.
Really proud of my ability to keep the operations flowing for the most part while in an intense morning til night week long conference.
##Immediate Flight To Hong Kong For Global Sources Summit
And then to Global Sources – on Monday – the next day after the closing party. And here is where things started to burst at the seams for me – I criss-crossed flights and missed my return ticket to hong kong. Nightmare! I didn’t want to miss the panel session I was hosting so rushed to the airport on the other side of Bangkok and bought a last minute flight (5 minutes before the 45 minute take off cut off time). Totally crazy and so happy I was able to get that flight. Yet I ran as fast as I could to the summit and came with 10 minutes left on the panel. Luke, my partner at Enterchina.co was able to substitute for me and we made it all work.
Spent a few days in Hong Kong and attended the summit for networking and to make up for missing my panel. I was still flustered – and a typhoon passed through on Tuesday- so somehow between the shuttle bus from Tsim Sha Tsui to the Asia World Expo my wallet fell out of my pocket. I think it was because the pants I bought (last minute at the airport mall) were too tight on me and squeezed out in my bus seat. After trying to back track as much as I could, I had to suck it up and realize I was not getting it back. Re-ordered my credit cards and APEC card. Guess it was not as bad as losing my passport so I just need to think positive.
##Testing My Endurance
The flight mixup, missing my panel, and then losing the wallet was a real of my tolerance. I was not upset at anyone else but myself. Yet at the same time I am doing so many things at the same time that this was bound to happen. I have read a lot of China business books, one being “Mr China” and he shares how he did have a breakdown at one point. I have to say, this was a time when I was consciously thinking this is when I can also have a breakdown. Things bursting at the seams, going faster than I can keep up with.
Yet, I have to credit my habit of meditating to keeping my mind in control. Clear my head, keep things in perspective. That is how I believe I didn’t totally break down when I felt the world was falling from under me.
##Typhoon Helped Save Me
Then there was the HaiMa typhoon that hit on Friday Oct 21 – canceling our China ecommerce via Hong Kong event (www.globalfromasia.com/hktrip). I have to say, someone up there was watching out for me. I was completely overextended – and while my wife Wendy was helping to organize it – a ton of the operations pressure was on me. Therefore, having a natural disaster coming to push me to postpone it until Friday Nov 18 was a blessing in disguise. So fortunate there.
##Guangzhou Canton Fair + Enter China
The day after the Typhoon, Saturday October 22, we had the Enter China Canton Fair meetup. This was our first Canton Fair meetup since taking over the Enter China business, and Luke and Rico – my business partners in that business – really stepped it up and did a great job.
Sharing a didi da che car w/ Andy Church and Maurice, it was an action packed Saturday event. I was so excited to see a bunch of the attendees came because of my Global From Asia email newsletter, podcasts, and blog posts. That is what I am really working towards – building an online system to drive great people together and making money from my home office. To write, create content, and connect people while my kids are playing in the room next door – that is the dream. And it is coming true.
The Enter China event was a success, and I was able to sneak out in the evening and have Sunday to spend with the family.
##Now It’s Monday Morning – Back to Work
Typing this up in my morning writing session on a Monday. The challenges, as much as I may sound like I am complaining – I enjoy the hustle. I enjoy being overworked. I enjoy learning, networking, and biting off more than I can chew.
But by having this blog, and my own personal journal – helps me vent a bit.
October 2016 has been another milestone. Have been able to “survive” it as much as I could. I knew when I was outlining these plans in September it would be a challenge – maybe I’m getting older – or maybe it was just more than I have ever done in a month.
Oh, and later this week is DCxHongKong (dchongkong.com) – so the month isn’t over. That is a way for me to give back to the Dynamite Circle community and have those members traveling through Hong Kong able to have a community and event to attend. Plan to do that yearly as well.