Frugality and Spirituality – How the Two are Related

buddhas birthday
Celebrate Vesak Day by being frugal.

Today, Buddhists will celebrate Vesak Day. Gratitude, mindfulness, humility, and frugality are all virtues of Buddhism. One could even argue that these virtues exist in some form in nearly all religions. On this Vesak Day, I am reminded that being frugal is not just for the sole purpose of saving money. A deeper, and somewhat more profound reason to be frugal is spiritual, ecological, and maybe even ethical. (more…)

Free MRT Travel for Early Risers Extended for Another Year

singapore mrt train
Travel early to travel for free (and it’s less crowded too!)

Early risers who have been enjoying free travel to the 18 designated MRT stations before 7:45am will continue to enjoy free fares for another year (till 23 June 2015). Those who tap out between 7:45am and 8am will also continue to get a 50 cent discount to these 18 stations. And to really help encourage you to shift your morning commute, for the next 3 Fridays (16, 23, & 30 May), Ya Kun Kaya Toast will be giving out free breakfast vouchers worth $4.60. (more…)

5 Meaningful (and inexpensive) Gifts for Mother’s Day

personalized notes in a jar
These gifts are not just inexpensive; they are priceless!

Being a good, responsible, and dedicated mother is perhaps one of the hardest jobs in the world. There are no off days or sick days. You get no salary, no benefits package, and the working conditions and hours can be insane. But the role does come with huge upside potential – a lifetime of purpose, memories, rewards, personal growth, and meaning. So why would I “cheapen” this by opting for an inexpensive Mother’s Day gift? (more…)

When Does a Job Becomes Exploitative?

help wanted ad
An employer-employee relationship should be fair, equitable, and consensual for both parties.

Jobs give us a source of income, a sense of security, a structure to our day, a means of networking and social connections, and an identity. But since all things come with a price, it is important to sometimes reflect on what we are exchanging for these career benefits. More importantly, we need to ask ourselves if the exchange is (or continues to be) fair, meaningful, and consensual. Often a relationship, particularly an employer-employee relationship, starts out as fair, meaningful, and consensual for both parties. But over time, can morph into a lopsided or even exploitative relationship. In fact, this happens very naturally and very commonly in a capitalistic society. Though it does not need to be this way as there are many businesses that practice “conscious capitalism”. (more…)

5 Ways to Protect Yourself as an Employee

Don't leave it up to your employer to protect you from exploitation.
Don’t leave it up to your employer to protect you from exploitation.

In this year’s May Day Rally, NTUC Chief Lim Swee Say said that employers “need to make better use of every worker, and treat every worker better”. He also told employees to not take the tight labour market for granted. May Day (a.k.a. International Workers’ Day) began as a movement of employees seeking better working conditions, hours, and protection from their employers. This was at a time when many employers exploited their employees, often forcing them to work very long hours (12+) in dangerous working conditions. (more…)

Rent Your Clothing – Wear Today, Gone Tomorrow

Why buy when you can rent?

There are certain things that a person should consider buying second-hand or borrowing. These include clothing for one-off events, such as weddings and other special occasions. And clothing meant for a particular (but limited) purpose, such as maternity wear and winter sports gear. It is a well-known fact that 80% of the clothes in our closets hardly ever get worn. And children’s clothing, particularly for newborns and infants, are often only worn a few times before they are discarded. So it makes no sense to buy these items new. (more…)

Movie Tickets for $7 or Less in Singapore

cheap theatre tickets
Use this chart to find the best cinema deals.

As ticket prices for some cinemas have recently increased, more and more people are trying to find good deals. Finding the cheapest option can be quite confusing since each cinema chain has different pricing tiers, promotions, and terms. If you want to get a good deal ($7 and under), I’ve created this easy-to-use chart that summarises all the current promotions. The prices on the chart are valid for all of 2014, unless otherwise specified. (more…)