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AK feels like Bilbo Baggins.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

The good thing about being an anonymous blogger is that I feel more comfortable to share more openly many things about myself, including what is my annual passive income from investments, for example. Anonymity gives me some protection and that gives me courage.

Over the years, I have been invited to speak at various public events or to be interviewed. Predictably, I have declined all such invitations with only one exception.

Bilbo Baggins. Source: Wikipedia.

Recently, I met a group of big hearted people who feel that many people will benefit from me sharing in person my little ideas about financial well-being and investing. Of course, my immediate response was to decline the offer. No surprises there.

However, I was so won over by what they are setting themselves up to do that I offered to them my blog which represents more than 4 years of dedication. To me, if my blog is able help fulfil the noble vision which they have, it would give me great satisfaction. Well, of course, I would still be blogging. I still enjoy it enough not to give it up yet.

They are very decent people and they think that it is not right for them to take my blog. They reasoned that it is not right to take it without fair compensation. They do not like the idea they will benefit from the arrangement but not me. This is the kind of people they are. Despite telling them that it doesn't matter to me, they refused.

Instead, they asked me to seriously consider doing greater good by inspiring people in person. I understand the argument that many people do not read blogs. I understand that many prefer people to people contact. However, there are already so many speakers and trainers who are doing a good job of inspiring people. Why me?

I am just a regular guy who works as a manager in a family controlled SME. I make a mid 4 figure salary and have 14 days of annual leave a year. I make use of common sense and try to be prudent with money. I also try to make my money work for me by investing for a second stream of income. There are many people who are like me in Singapore, I reckon.

Fear of the loss of privacy is the biggest thing that is holding me back from making a public appearance. It would also be terrible if, by making a public appearance, I cause my family to be subjected to scrutiny as well.

I told one of these friends that I feel like Bilbo Baggins and that, to me, he is Gandalf who has come knocking on my door. Should I pack up my stuff and go with him?

I am a worrier by nature and, already, I can imagine how things could go wrong in more ways than one. I wonder is this going to be worth it?

Related post:
Common but admirable people.


Kelvin said...

Hi AK!

As you know I have been following your blog since early 2011 and finally I can give you my 0.2 cents worth. Just follow your heart and although it does sound selfish, you should do what you think it's comfortable for you and not compromise on your believes and routines. I believe in all your wisdom that you will make the right choice yeah!


E H said...

Before you make a public appearance, remember to seek clearance from your company, especially if appearance fees are involved.

AK71 said...

Hi Kelvin,

Yes, I have a comfort zone which I am, well, comfortable in.

Now, my heart tells me to do it but my mind tells me not to. Hence, the struggle. -.-"

I actually think there is no "wrong" choice in this matter. Hence, a bigger struggle. =.="

AK71 said...

Hi E H,

Wow. I didn't think of that. Thanks for telling me.

Money Honey said...

For face to face "consultation", a reminder of Disclaimer is important perhaps? "The ideas expressed by me to you now should not be construed as an enticement to buy or sell the securities, commodities or assets mentioned. The accuracy or completeness of the information provided cannot be guaranteed. You should carry out independent verification of information provided. No warranty whatsoever is given and no liability whatsoever is accepted for any loss howsoever arising whether directly or indirectly as a result of actions taken based on ideas and information furnished to you now in person."

AK71 said...

Hi Money Honey,

Haha... I don't think I am being asked to be a consultant. Definitely not qualified for that but to share my ideas as a regular retail investor, maybe. :)

Solace said...

Hi AK,

I would hesitate to make a public appearance if i were you.

I guess it's the same reasons why i didn't comment much on yr facebook.

I guess privacy is something we treasured. I cannot have friends and relatives coming towards me to ask for financial advice. I cannot be responsible for them.

I believe you are comfortable with your way of life up to now and want to maintain a status quo.

If a person is truly interested to learn about financial management, one would definitely take the initiate and learn on his/her own.

Like me and several people i come across, we do not need someone to come to us to teach the importance of managing finance. If one has the will and determination to pursue the knowledge, they will get it. The resources are out there

Some people have suggested you to write a book, which i think is an excellent idea. Your blog contains lots of written information, it can be revisited anytime. I find it more precious than attending a seminar to listen to talk.

I may feel inspired for awhile after a talk, but it will fade off soon with time.

Books, blogs, website and recordings works very well for me than attending a talk/seminar.

AK71 said...

Hi Solace,

Yes, I agree with you that privacy is really priceless. I can imagine two types of people who would give up their privacy.

1. People who give up privacy to achieve fame or notoriety to make money.

2. People who don't care about privacy as they genuinely want to touch lives and help people.

I would like to help people to help themselves. I also want to keep my privacy. I want to have my cake and eat it too. :)

As for publishing a book based on my blog posts, I really don't know where to start. LOL. Do you want to try? ;p

SGYI said...

Hi AK,

The group of people must be settling up to do something really good for you to offer up your blog to them. I'm curious what they are about to do. Seems like it will make an impact in Singapore's financial education world.

AK, many people are drawn by your humble and simple way of living life. Other people rush to become famous but you're not one of them. If you happen to become famous one day, people will still know that you're humble within. The financial literacy space will be honoured to have you as a contributor towards better financial education in Singapore.

Anonymous said...

Are u appearing as AK to the people or just yourself to the people?

How come they want u to appear in person, when they are attracted to your blog but insist that your blog is not effective enough or could not reach them?

I have no idea who are are meeting with, if its just the average joes like u and me, as mentioned, working a normal life but yet to unleash their potential. My own choice, me and my own only, will be no. Of course I do not have the same level of influence or wits in investment, but if I imagine myself to have attain your level, I would say no.

But if the targeted group is people who have lost hope, and lost their confidence due to 1 setback or another, and need a real life av. Joe to tell them it is possible to pick themselves up, I would give it a try. The impact is big, and motive altruistic. But if it is the av. Joe, their potential can be unleashed in different ways.

In other ways, the bigger the focus is on finance and investment, the stronger the No, if its motivation and encouragement to a group to pick their lives in finance, the stronger the yes.

I kaypo, sorry! In fact, I am contemplating to stop blogging about finance and investment matters, and maybe even blogging as a whole, just hang around, leaving comments to irritate ppl should be fine.

:) sorry fr the long message.

Solace said...

Hi AK,

you got be kidding. I find it a hassle to set up a blog or post regularly online, don't even need to talk about writing a book lol.

Maybe, i give it a thought when i achieve financial freedom and i lead semi-retirement life. hahaha

I can help with the preface of your book during that time haha.

Cory said...

Why care what other people say or think ? Do what you are comfortable with. Is your life not theirs.

AK71 said...


This is a rather complex issue and has many factors involved although it might seem simple at first and you have pressed one of my buttons.

I have always wondered why people have to pay so much for a course on investing in stocks. I mean $3k or $4k for a 3 day course is a lot of money. I don't believe that it needs to cost so much.

Recently, a reader told me he paid $998 or $988 for a 2 days course and apparently he was simply taught stuff in Pat Dorsey's book (which costs me less than $40 to buy).

I understand that everyone has to make a living and people who teach investment skills to others full time need an income too but there is such a thing as fair remuneration, I believe.

I do feel even more upset when friends end up paying large amounts for such courses and nothing changed. I would offer to share with them what I know but they still prefer to pay for courses. So, if I were to charge for courses, they would listen? O_o

Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Little did I know the Disney song "Let it go" I posted last week was so prescient.

Mind says blend in don't stand out.

Heart says I want to be true to myself.

Have fun!

AK71 said...

Hi Mike,

Please feel free to leave comments in my blog and "irritate" me as much as you like. Of course, you are more than welcome to guest blog for ASSI. :)

Like I told SGYI, it is really a complex issue and you have raised good questions.

I believe that it is difficult to segregate people who wish to attend any event into those who have lost their way and those who simply want to learn more about investing. I think they would all be attracted to an event that is fairly priced and promises to over deliver.

My proposed participation is to show everyone, both those who are lost and those who are just starting out, how an regular guy with a regular income is able to achieve a measure of financial security through investing in stocks.

I am attracted to the vision of a value for money quality education in investing. Marginal cases will eventually enjoy subsidies (helped by those who can afford to pay). For those who really cannot afford to pay, I believe that the idea is to provide free education.

I am attracted to the bigger mission they have which is to reach those who do not have the means to help themselves. I think we need more people like this.

I was really swept away by the vision and I want to help. So, now, you can imagine why I was willing to offer my blog to them. The blog was something I started for my own enjoyment but it morphed into what it is today. It could possibly be the biggest contribution I could make, short of making a public appearance.

Now, question is although I am attracted to the vision and believe in the cause, do I want to make an appearance to help spearhead the movement? Now, my heart says 'yes' but my mind says 'no'...

AK71 said...

Hi Solace,

Thanks for the offer to preface my future book (which is unlikely to ever materialise). ;p

Well, you have raised an important point on what you are not willing to do because you find it a hassle.

I think all of us have things we are happy doing and things we find a hassle to do.

I enjoy blogging. So, I don't really find it a hassle but it could, at times, be stressful and I think you can imagine when those times are.

I enjoy reaching out to people and share ideas which could make their life better. Through my blog, I am quite comfortable doing it.

Now, it is back to the question that I have been thinking (and dreaming) about...

AK71 said...

Hi Cory,

The question is now whether I am willing to help spearhead a movement that will potentially benefit many lives or if I should just stay in my comfort zone, undisturbed.

I value the peaceful life of being an unknown, a life much like Bilbo Baggins', but at the same time I am drawn to efforts to help people. Hence, the struggle.

No one has forced anything on me. The struggle is really personal.

Maybe, I am going through mid-life crisis...

AK71 said...


Your comment came in as my reply to Mike's comment went out. Mind VS. Heart. Indeed so.

And you know what, when a friend PM me on FB, he asked me to listen to the same song you mentioned. He gave me the link:
Disney's Frozen "Let It Go" Sequence Performed by Idina Menzel

OMG. Haha... So drama. ;p

You have always been the still water runs deep type. I know and now I say. ;)

SGYI said...

Hi AK,

3k to 4k is indeed expensive. Most of the stuff taught in existing courses out there can be learnt from books like you've said. Well, I attended such courses before and paid my fair share of it. It's the idea that you can earn back your money later that intrigues people to sign up for it. People are willing to pay for it and thus the high price. Many people who went for such courses actually lost money in the stock market beforehand and they go for courses to regain their hopes.

Many of those who teach investing did say if they charge for courses, then participants would learn more. I also kept thinking if these people can be successful in investing, why do they still need to charge for courses? Can they conduct it for free?

One example to motivate you. I think one of the better person whom have conducted such courses before is the late dennis ng. I think you should have heard of him before. I did noy attend his courses before but I learnt a lot from what he shared on radio, interviews and his books. And now after he passed on, one of his students, Alvin (owner of bigfatpurse) is continuing this legacy to teach financial education. They have just started their course but I don't know how much they are charging for it. They do have free courses now and then but the seats are always taken up within 3 hours. I think if we have enough money and don't need so much anyway, why not charge cheaper for courses? Need to cover the rental of spaces and admin fees etc but 3k per person for 3 days is a bit too much? Or maybe the rental is really expensive? That I dont know.

Anyway, SGX does conduct many basic free courses and even their intermediate courses are only in hundreds. Definitely not more than $1000. I shall stop here now this comment is too long. Haha

Capricon said...

You had been sharing a lot a lot more in your blog and it had been very helpful, especially with your prompt, quality responses to comments from readers at the expense of your personal life, it is the passion that drives it. Because of the anonymity, you have " no burden" to share freely, which is great.

In my opinion, when you start it publicly, even with a very little fees, people tend to perceive you have obligations. And I am very sure you will probably overwhelmed and affecting your job eventually to the extend that you might need to go full time, is this what you want ?

I think your blog had already been so helpful as compared to value investing courses out there collecting 3-4k, even more if you want to be in the inner circle. In short, publicize your blog is good enough, touching lives, at least that is what I felt. Though I wish to learn your method of valuation in person, I respect and understand your privacy.

Anonymous said...

From what u say, I think it is better to say yes than no. But of course, your call.

Particularly, if they can reach out to non- convert, it will be great, those reading financial blog are already convert, so it make sense to make personal touches, a different playform

EY said...

Hi AK,

A yes or no decision should appeal to both mind and heart. :)

Is there a well thought out plan to reach out to the most disadvantaged? If yes, how sustainable and scalable is it?

For the rest of the business activities, i.e. catering to the average Joes, and using proceeds to support this social mission, do you want to be part of it?

Perhaps taking on the perspective of the recipients can be helpful in arriving at the decision? Are we trying to sell what we want to sell and what we think others need? Good to be mindful that peddling knowledge does not equate to solution. :)

Maybe when those fundamental questions on the effectiveness of the proposed solutions are satisfactorily answered, only then would it be worth contemplating if giving up your privacy is a good idea.

I know the 'Why' is compelling and you have bought into the vision. But the answer is in the 'How'. Once you are fully convinced, let your altruistic spirit take over your worry and fear about 'coming out of the closet'. :P

And c'mon, it's not as if you are going to be famous like Tay Ping Hui or Pierre Png! Speaking at events isn't going to turn your life topsy turvy. Have you attended seminars? How many of those speakers have left an indelible impression and you'd made him/her an idol? Well, you get what I mean.

And hey, not that I doubt your charm or charisma. Maybe, there is some basis for your worry. Beware of stalkers ya? LOL!

Chris said...

AK, I have been following your blog and no longer remain silent in my thoughts. Many of us have benefited from your unselfish sharing of knowledge. Through your blog, your personality shines through and you are truly blogging from your heart. I say do what you enjoy and follow your heart!

Ben said...


I think that you have helped a lot of people from this blog. I believe that many people have benefitted from your blog and applied some of the techniques and experiences in their road to financial freedom. If you want to maintain privacy and help people, you have achieved your objective. There is only this much you can do while maintaining the privilege of remaining annoymous.


E H said...

Sorry. This Hokkien version of Let It Go trumps.

AK71 said...


AK has a reputation, after so many years of blogging, as someone who will not pay unless it is value for money. So, if I were to be involved in any event in financial education, I will definitely try to make sure it is indeed value for money. :)

"Why not charge cheaper for courses?"

I ask that same question all the time. If we can reach out to more people and benefit more people with the knowledge we have, why not? And we can definitely do this by not charging high prices.

I understand that doing it full time, coaches need to be paid but why so much?

seefei said...

i had asked a lot of close friends to read your blog. some did and benefited. but quite a lot had asked me to read and just let them know when there is a buying opportunity. I told them it is not a trading blog but a blog where you share an investment journey with the author on stock tips and learn to invest in confident.

Well, my advice didn't go down well with these later group of people. they will prefer to go to trading/investment seminar as it is more social and has the "wow" factor.

For the friends who asked you to speak to a group of audience,i have this to say. if their event bring in audience like the later group of people who like event more than the knowledge, i rather you keep your anonymity and continue to do what you are happy with.

AK71 said...

Hi Capricon,

Thank you so much. You hit the nail on the head. Well, one of the nails, anyway. ;)

Now, I share freely what little I know and, strictly speaking, I have no obligation to do more but I do it because I feel that if I can help, why not? Of course, I do not know everything and if I make mistakes, I hope people will point them out. :)

A friend who is a veteran blogger told me that he does not envy me having to reply regularly to comments, emails and, now, messages on FB. However, I feel that if people take the effort to write to me, I should take the effort to reply. Otherwise, just stop blogging.

I definitely do not know how I might cope if the load increases. To be honest, I would like to blog full time and I have revealed this before. However, blogging in the niche that I do doesn't pay very well at all. -.-"

SnOOpy168 said...


I had often replied to those asking why I didn't turn professional with my photography skills : "It is one thing loving to cook for friends & family, it is a different thing trying to cook for a living."

Just look at reality series MasterChef & MasterChef Professional and you will see the difference. OT: I'd prefer the more friendly Australian edition.

Not everyone needs to achieve a PhD to be educated. One needs to acquire (& be constantly updated) with sufficient knowledge to be street smart.

AK71 said...

Hi Mike,

Yes, that is one of the strongest arguments for me to contribute by making an appearance. :)

So, now you know why my heart says 'yes' but, at the moment, my mind still says 'no'. -.-"

seefei said...

Adam Scott said in his latest book, "do not follow your passion" as it is a dangerous thing to do. Once your passion fizzle out, you are stranded high and dry.

go full time buoyed by passion? LOL

AK71 said...

Hi Endrene,

"And c'mon, it's not as if you are going to be famous like Tay Ping Hui or Pierre Png!"


Hmmmm.... OK. Good point. Although there is still a chance that there could be people who know me in the audience and decide to tell everyone else about my off stage life. I want my private life kept, well, private...

I like the way you put it. I have bought into the 'Why' and am I convinced by the 'How'?

Well, they have shared with me some of the ways in which they would help people although not in great detail yet.

I must, of course, say that I am not very conversant with projects or movements (whatever we want to call it) like this. If I really want to find out more, the only way is to immerse myself in it and do more. Then, I will discover over time for myself.

Otherwise, 'on paper talk soldier' is too easy. :)

The problem now is that my heart and my mind are at loggerheads. -.-"

AK71 said...

Hi Chris,

Thanks for breaking your silence. :)

Well, my heart says to do it. The problem is my mind says not to do it. -.-"

AK71 said...

Hi E H,

LOL. Yes, that is the version in SMOL's blog. SMOL never disappoints. ;p

AK71 said...

Hi Ben,

Thanks for the affirmation. :)

"There is only this much you can do while maintaining the privilege of remaining anonymous."

Yes, this is what I have been told and it is hard to disagree with it. Would I really be able to do more if I appear in person? I need to meditate on this...

AK71 said...

Hi seefei,

I disagree with Adam Scott. LOL. If I were not passionate about blogging, I would have given up a long time ago. It is very demanding in both time and effort. Of course, the day might come when my passion dries up. That is true. Then, I stop blogging, I suppose. :)

As for what kind of people the event is targeting, it is not people who want to get rich quick, definitely. However, it is hard to know what kind of people would turn up eventually. I mean we cannot help it if some such people walked in and leave the event in disgust!

"Aiyoh! Cheat my money! Stupid event!" -.-"

Thanks for spreading the word on financial freedom. You are doing good in trying to help your friends. :)

AK71 said...

Hi SnOOpy168,

Well, I am not blogging for my friends and family only. LOL.

And I would like to try blogging for a living although one look at the kind of money my blog makes tells me to stop dreaming... -.-"

Anonymous said...

Hi AK,

Since you have given me the green light to irritate you, let me do so.(be careful what you wished for)

I believed it is you mind that said yes,but your heart that said no.

You know with a different platform, you are able to reach a different group of people, and these people are really decent people with a vision that you shared.

It is your heart that refuse to step out of the comfort zone, and the fear that now there are people who can put a face to AK.

So now, let me try to convince your heart.

You like anonymity,but you can have the cake and eat it. No one is asking you to take photos with banners at the back screaming "AK as guest speaker", and have that photo splash over newspaper or television(Or is it?). Only a small number of people, (thousands perhaps?)will know who you are, if they tell their friends, all they could say is: hey AK, in actual person is blar blar.. The image is still blur.

Singapore has a population in excess of 4 million. Assume you reach out to 4 thousand people, what is the chance of meeting them?

0.1%? But multiple that by 365 days a year, chances are, you might meet some of them.

So what will or can they do when they meet you? Most probably come up to u for a little nice chat if they really benefited, that should make you feel good, not bad.

If they think you are a fraud, most probably they will just ignore you,or whisper some nasty words to their partners.

But hey, you mean no one say any nasty things about you? I have that a lot of times, but as long as I know where I stand, who cares.

As for throwing apples, eggs or shoes at you? Please, you are not George Bush who approve an invasion of Iraq without finding WMD, Shoes are reserved for him. No one throw anything at corrupt people who cheated on their wives, get sex from their pupils.

As for harassment to your family, no one ask you to give every details of your life, we shouldn't even when we are meeting with people on daily basis. Unless you decided to do a Casey and call all those who come for your seminar poor losers, I dun think you will have death threats or harassment. I dun think AK in his 3 lives will call someone a poor loser.

So for a probability of less than 0.1 % of something bad that will happen to you because you reach out to others,you chose to ignore the 50% chance of making a difference to 4000 people?

YOu are not a very good investor if you do not like this risk-reward profile of this undertaking.

OK enough of my irritation.

SGYI said...

Hi AK,

Blogging for a living is possible but not on finance and investment. The reach is just limited. Singaporeans are more interested in food, travelling, fun! Haha. Somehow finance stuff is known as boring to most young people and known as scary to older people. I wonder why people rather attend paid investment seminars than read free financial blogs? But then again even seminars out there don't attract a lot of people so maybe that's why the instructors have to charge a higher rate to cover costs. I suppose your blog has attracted more people on a daily basis than people who attended seminars?

AK71 said...

Hi Mike,

I am absolutely overwhelmed... O_o

From your first comment which advised a resounding "no", you are now pushing for a big "yes" and you do such a good job of it too! :)

Are you sure you are not a closet politician? I really think that any political party would be more than happy to have you join their ranks. ;p

I have spent much of my weekend thinking about this matter and I was entertaining the thought of doing just one event and then retreating into the shadows again.

"... for a probability of less than 0.1 % of something bad that will happen to you because you reach out to others,you chose to ignore the 50% chance of making a difference to 4000 people?"

I read this a few times... It has nothing to do with me being a bad investor or a good one. The connection is rather forced but I know what you are trying to tell me.

Thanks. :)

AK71 said...


I don't have the statistics. So, I don't know if my blog reaches out to more people than investment seminars do.

However, I like the idea that if people want to pay to attend lessons, there should be inexpensive quality offerings out there.

If we can have the an offering that has charity at its heart, we have a winner as far as I am concerned. :)

Anonymous said...

Hmm AK,

Sorry for the flip flop. Initially I thought u are just doing those motivational roadshop for ppl who want to get rich. But after reading again, t thought if the purposes is to reach out to the non-convert, then it makes sense.

U see, if u are speaking to those already interested in investment, your blog should do fine, why the need for u to do the show beside milking u for money in win-win situation.

But, if the seminar is to pitch at fiancial literacy, I which u play a part, u might be making speeches to people who never bother about such things, hence would not have ever read your blogs.

Granted, u mentioned u have no idea who will participate, but given that they have a system of those able to pay for those unable, or even free for some, j guess its some Non-profits NGO aiming for self- sustaining programme. For that, I would like to play a part of ever opportunity come knocking.

Hey, dun make me sound like I flip words like flip roti- Prata lei.. Every bit of info will influence decision making ma.

Also, occupation hazard la, I always need to do a sale pitch to motivate people. But I mean what I say truthfully. So both yes and no under different circumstances is really how I feel.

Anyway, nice to have such a good conversation with someone who I didn't even know.

Hope u see more light than stars... My "clients" usually see stars than lights haha

AK71 said...

Hi Mike,

I know for a fact that they want to price an upcoming event so cheaply that I worried if it is going to be enough to cover costs. In fact, I told them it was too cheap and they had to charge a bit more but make sure they add even more value.

They primarily want to target people who are going to join the work force soon and I think that makes a lot of sense. I think you can see why. :)

They worry that these people might be priced out if they were to charge a higher price. I told them that they should practise tiered pricing.

Students show their matriculation cards and they will get a big discount. These students will still get the same value as people who pay the full price! Good idea, if I do say so myself.

Free education will come one day but not in the beginning as the organisation is still a baby. This is my belief. I have the feeling that they want to do it sooner than later but it would be a shame if the venture failed because of a lack of funds.

They are talented and big hearted people who are willing to sacrifice many things to make their vision a reality but they will still need fair compensation.

Finally, yes, the idea of making speeches to people who have never thought about financial freedom or to people who have thought about it but would like some guidance is very appealing to me. This is what I would like to do with my blog but with limited success, I am sure.

I would be very happy if I could inspire many more people. Just have to convince myself that a loss of privacy might not be that big a thing...

Wealth Journey said...

After reading thru' so many comments and AK's reply, my conclusion is AK wants to do it.

He is just scared to step out of the comfort zone.

Uh.. am i stating the obvious?

Does anyone think they can influence AK to step forward or step back? :)

AK71 said...

Hi WJ,

You hardly comment and when you do, it is like lightning and thunder! :D

Yes, I want to do it! My heart tells me to do it! LOL.

However, my mind tells me not to because the loss of privacy might not be worth it. -.-"

Recruit Ong said...

Unless u intend to make some kind of a second career out of it, otherwise why go public? more cons and troubles than pros.

flyingchicken said...

I suppose there is no more need for others to voice their opinions here.

From your replies, I can see you already decided to give up your privacy. As a silent reader of your blog since 2010, I hope this new hobby will not eat into the frequency of your blog posting. Like what Solace mentioned, blog postings can be referred back like a book and has much more value then conducting a seminar. If your target audience are technology savvy fresh grads, I see no reason why they don't know how to access your blog and spend some time reading up.

Frankly, I do not like the idea of you conducting seminars. The reason is not so much about loss of privacy. It is the amount of time that require to prepare, conduct, follow up each seminar session which is more time consuming then writing a blog post and answering comments. If you take up this "new job", I think your blog quality and frequency may suffer.

My 2 cents worth of thought.

cindy tan said...

Ok...I know it sounds silly about wearing an eye mask to speak at the event ... like Batman ... :P

Seriously, if the pros outweigh the cons, just do it!


LoveLocks said...


Whenever im faced with this kind of choices.
I will ask myself . Will i regret not doing it on my deathbed? If yes i will go ahead and do it.
If not i will just let it pass.

Though saying is easier than doing, but you being AK71, i have trust in you :)

At the end, we know its not an easy decision to either accept or reject. But we will respect your decision ๐Ÿ˜€

AK71 said...

Hi Ong,

Well, I rather like the idea of being a full time blogger but it just isn't financially viable.

If something should come along that could possibly allow me to blog full time by supporting me financially, I should seriously think about it.

I don't think I am interested in a second career. Too old for another career but a full time job that I love? :)

AK71 said...

Hi flying chicken,

You have decided that I have decided. Honestly, I have not decided yet. :)

I sense that you dread how I could possibly spend a lot less time blogging if I should commit to this venture. However, I could be blogging less in future for other reasons too.

I was blogging a lot less towards the end of last year because I was feeling a little burnt out, for example.

I still feel passionate about blogging and helping people. This is why I keep at it but I think it would be unrealistic to assume that I will keep blogging the way I have been blogging in the last few years without ever stopping at some point in time. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Cindy,

Haha.. Some friends have suggested that. What about a brown paper bag? ;)

Nah, I think it would be insincere. If I should decide to go ahead with this, I should do it sincerely.

However, appearing as Zorro is quite appealing too. Thanks. ;p

AK71 said...

Hi Lovelocks,

Jimmy, right? Been a while since you commented. I hope I got your name right. :)

I could possibly regret not doing this but I wouldn't know, really. It could turn out to be a disaster and, then, it would have had been better not to do it. LOL.

There is really no way of knowing but I know where you are coming from. Thank you. :)

AhJohn said...

Hi AK, I think the decision is very simple. If it will make you giving up blogging in future (for whatever reason), that should not be a good idea. Be yourself! It difficult to build a well-received blog and gather some great minds.

AK71 said...

Hi Ah John,

Haha.. I got you worried too. My apologies. :)

I was just trying to make flying chicken imagine a time when AK might no longer be blogging and I could think of many reasons why this might come true. I wasn't specifically referring to this new adventure that has come knocking on my door. ;)

Actually, if I should accept this new adventure, chances are that the quality of my blog would improve as I would have access to more resources and brilliant analytical minds on the team. I might also feel less burnt out. :)

Well, there are pros and cons, for sure. This is a big decision for me, as you can tell by now.

Recruit Ong said...

"If something should come along that could possibly allow me to blog full time by supporting me financially, I should seriously think about it."

hi Ak, if being a full time blogger gives u financial viability, treat it as a bonus is how i see it... the income stream cannot fight with your current passive income leh.

"I don't think I am interested in a second career. Too old for another career but a full time job that I love? :)"

a full time job that u love is also a career liao leh, no meh? ;)

i think hor the moment u go public it will be a massive change... it also affect the objectivity & perception of the blog content, whether u like it or not...
bcos in my mind i will see conflict of interest bcos the existence of the blog now has a financial motive behind it...
but thats me a chao keng recruit who think too much hehe

nb got money to make just take it! hahaha

Tien Song Chuan said...

Hey , set up your own fund management business la. That way you will earn even more! I will be your first customer.

AK71 said...

Hi Ong,

Perhaps, it has to do with me being a business manager and how I feel that every business unit has to be self sustaining. If a business unit is bleeding the company, it should get the chop.

Now, I do not look at blogging as a business. It is a hobby but one that has felt like a second full time job for a while now. ;)

If I should look at blogging as a business, then, without a doubt, it should have been chopped a long time ago since I am not being compensated adequately.

My passive income from investing in the stock market is another business unit. Any good capital allocator would not take earnings from this business unit to support another business unit that is not viable. LOL.

When you said career, I was thinking about those people climbing the corporate ladder. Career to me sounds like that. Pardon me if I am mistaken. -.-"

One thing I am sure of, if I should take the plunge and go with 'Gandalf' eventually, I would be taking a big pay cut. I won't be making more money...

If I should take the plunge, there would definitely be new content in my blog related to the activities I would be involved in. So, in that respect, the blog would be different but I do not see why people should think of it negatively.

I am still me and I will continue to share what I believe is value for money and I will continue to urge readers to be charitable if we have the ability to help.

If a movement or event does not resonate with me, chances are I would not be a part of it. :)

AK71 said...

Hi Tien,

A private equity fund is possible, I guess, but I won't be the one managing it. Brilliant analytical minds required for this. My mind is a little dull. :(

Singapore Man of Leisure said...

The man, his son, and their mule.

Bilbo, you're the only one with skin in the game ;)

Flipping through my wardrobe. Hmm.. What shall I wear today?

Leather? Chain-mail, or Plate armour?

Oh silly me!

Non can compare to your small shirt of Mithril, Bilbo Baggins!

AK71 said...


You very good but what do I have that is the equivalent of Bilbo's Mithril shirt, I would like to know. -.-"

Recruit Ong said...

"One thing I am sure of, if I should take the plunge and go with 'Gandalf' eventually, I would be taking a big pay cut. I won't be making more money..."

if not making more money from your stable day job then why do it leh? other then u will be enjoying it more than the day job...

if u have clearance from your current job, why not do both? small incremental steps n see how it goes... and then can stop if u feel unsure.

"If I should take the plunge, there would definitely be new content in my blog related to the activities I would be involved in. So, in that respect, the blog would be different but I do not see why people should think of it negatively."

oh wat i mean is i recall reading some post on some paid seminar... i mean in my mind i thinking u probably get some small cut for "promoting" the event... this is wat i mean by conflict of interest... sorrie lah i dun mean to imply anything negative hor. :(

anyway i say take the money and just do it hahahaha

coconut said...

AK, may i correct you, your mind tells you to gives a try but your heart tells you not to.

i will always try to follow my heart instead of my mind.

what say you.

AK71 said...

Hi Ong,

If I truly enjoy a job, I don't mind taking a pay cut but there is a minimum amount that I would need in order to get by.

As for making some money promoting events, yes, it has happened before. However, very few know that I have turned down offers before as well.

Only very recently, I just declined an offer to promote an investment seminar and to write 3 blog posts to promote it in my blog. The fee was $1,300. Stupid of me, right? ;)

Right now, however, I am more concerned about privacy issues. Definitely not as easy as take the money and just do it. :)

AK71 said...

Hi coconut,

That is what Mike thinks. I still think that my heart says to do it and my mind (the rational one) says not to do it.

So, what now? ;)

Singapore Man of Leisure said...


Exactly! You have to check your wardrobe yourself ;)

Surely you are not going adventuring wearing typical Singaporean weekend bermuda, T-shirt, and slippers?

And I am assuming you are not going dragon slaying with a toothpick?

I better stop! I beginning to sound like woman...


AK71 said...


You are talking to someone who still has clothes from his secondary school days and who has not bought any new clothes in at least 5 years. -.-"

OK, I recently bought some socks from Giordano. I wonder if they are made of Mithril. Hmmm...

coconut said...

i not sure about you AK, but as far as i'm concern, doing things close to the heart i will have less regrets whatever the outcomes is.

thats not the case if i follow my mind where its interfere and get influence by external events. i have much regret later.

so i usually follow my heart.

Recruit Ong said...

"Right now, however, I am more concerned about privacy issues. Definitely not as easy as take the money and just do it. :) "

ooohhhh... like dat i know u wont do it liao.... bcos privacy & the consequences of losing it cannot be measured by money value... :(
then again may be u just feel this way today..
who knows next week or tmr when u wake up u may feel privacy is no longer an issue... hehee

AK71 said...

Hi coconut,

Haven't you had instances when you followed your heart in things you really wanted to do when your mind said 'no' only to have things turned out the way just like your mind said they could?

Recruit Ong said...

Coconut: "i not sure about you AK, but as far as i'm concern, doing things close to the heart i will have less regrets whatever the outcomes is.

thats not the case if i follow my mind where its interfere and get influence by external events. i have much regret later.

so i usually follow my heart."

dun mind me... i think hor the difference between the mind and the heart is the mind deals with reality and its consequences, whereas the heart deals with feelings and the consequences of those feelings...
usually consequences from reality is harder to deal with leh...

coconut said...

teaching, or should i put it sharing with others especially the less experience one is what in your heart cos you are loving it. you done a excelence execelence job!

you now have an option to bring it to another level, thats your call, its still close to your heart. nothing to regret/worry about. you can always come back to where you are right now.

coconut said...

good point AK! many times! it happen countless times in trading too.

as long as i have no regrets, i'm ok with what i do.

AK71 said...

Hi Ong,

Yes, you have hit the nail on the head. It is a question of whether I am willing to compromise on my privacy to do this. :)

How to put a price tag on privacy? It is priceless.

Usually, I would not even consider doing this for any amount of money. Money, we can always make but privacy once lost, cannot be regained.

Privacy will always be precious to me. I don't think I will wake up tomorrow or next week and think otherwise.

If I am able to do more good by giving up something precious to me, I should do it but am I that noble? I want to be noble but should I be noble? -.-"

AK71 said...

Hi coconut,

You have reached a higher level in ZEN than I have. I get your point. Thank you. :)

veronika said...

Your deeds can be noble
You can remain private & anonymous.

Consider creating a proxy.
Wear a mask and go online with Skype and interact with your audience.

AK71 said...

Hi Veronika,

I actually thought of that too. Haha... :)

I wonder if there is any need to prove to the audience that the person on the screen is actually AK.

A reader recently mentioned to me that since I am anonymous and very few know who I am, what's there to stop someone from impersonating me one day and conning people? That got me a bit worried. -.-"

INVS 2.0 said...

You have the exact same personality as me, except that occasionally I would show off some of my achievements to my long-term haters that they were wrong about me (regarding me failing in life). Haha.

We both also stammer abit and introvertic to certain extent. And I do worry alot of things, even unfounded ones. :)

AK71 said...

Hi INVS 2.0,

I don't know if we have exactly the same personality but we could be quite similar. :)

I can be quite the extrovert with the right people, actually, although I have no trouble spending quality time with myself. In fact, I rather enjoy that. :)

William Tay said...

if more and more young people just focus on investing , then who create jobs for the majority of the people in our society ?

AK71 said...

Hi William,

I echo what Warrant Buffett says about investing for a second stream of income. Unless we are born with a silver spoon, I think it is hard to do it as our only source of income. :)

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