Author: My 15 Hour Work Week

The Art Of The Good Life #2: The Fine Art Of Correction

I vaguely remember drawing up some grand plans 10 years ago. I think it probably included a career as a high-flying civil servant, a lovely/capable wife along with two beautiful kids (preferably a boy and a girl) plus staying in a condominium with a continental drive readily accessible in the car park. Except for the wife part, the rest have not been on point. And 22 year old me definitely did not make any plans to become a full-time tutor or adopt an online persona as Mr 15HWW. Things just “happened along the way”. In this chapter, author Rolf...

Read More

Portfolio Update: April 2018

With decent income and very manageable expenses recently, we were able to inject close to $5k to the portfolio. But unfortunately, the portfolio did not rise by that much. Even after a couple of very good days in the market, the portfolio still took a small hit due to the poor performance of a couple of stocks. The appreciating SGD is also a drag on the foreign holdings. I am still ambivalent towards the direction of the market since I have enough invested and also have abit of cash to take advantage of any weaknesses in the market. Overall...

Read More

The Art Of The Good Life #1: Mental Accounting

About a few weeks ago, I decided to take an evening jog to Punggol East and indulge myself in some Popeye’s chicken after the run. I stuffed two $10 notes in preparation for the sinful meal. However, after the run and meal, when I cycled back and reached home, I realised that I only had coins left in my pocket. The other $10 note was missing. I probably accidentally dropped the other note when I was digging into my pocket to pay the cashier. (Er hem…  btw the Mrs doesn’t know about this incident) So how do you think you would...

Read More

The Art Of The Good Life: Overview

This is a book that I finished reading last week and I do highly recommend it. The highest compliment I can give? It will add on to my collection of about 10-15 non-fiction books that deserves to be re-read and internalised. I read “Poor Charlie’s Almanack” two years ago. The biggest take-away from Charlie Munger is the importance of building mental models to make better decisions in life. And I think this book by Rolf Dobelli comes closest to being a usable text book to achieve that. It’s written with the layman in mind, easy to digest and comprises...

Read More

Ruminations On Blogging

I haven’t been blogging that often in the past few months. If not for the typical monthly expenses and portfolio updates, the blog would have gone AWOL during this period. Blogging is another typical activity that is simple, but not easy. Seriously, all it takes is time. If you sit down in front of a laptop with a blank screen, it’s likely that you would have typed out some thoughts or reflections by the end of an hour or two. The difficulty is doing it constantly, with many other things in life competing for the same use of that...

Read More

Expenses Update: March 2018

It has probably taken months, (if not a couple of years), but we have finally settled down into a “consume home-cooked food” by default routine. It helped that some of our favourite go-to places have either removed their set lunch menus or raised prices. This meant that spending a little bit of time cooking at home and packing our meals became the best proposition on most weekdays. This had a big impact on our expenses as we only spent about $3,100 in March. Let’s hope we also see some positive side effects on our waistlines a few months down...

Read More

Portfolio Update: March 2018

The volatility that I talked about last month has appeared to be a non-event on hindsight. The STI has since climbed back to above 3,500 and is just a few percentage points away from this year’s high. Perhaps just like this recent article (which tells us to pay less attention to news and yet be more informed), we should also pay less attention to the market and just continue to save and invest for a better future. Most likely, after a decade or two, you would have built up some serious wealth by then. And yes, with the injection of...

Read More

2017 Expenses: Summary And Reflections

For some people, tabulating expenses can be a nightmare scenario. Be it the hassle of recording, the shock at finding out how much your healthcare insurance have increased or the guilt at finding out how much you had spent on lottery. But not so for the 15HWW household. We have been publishing monthly expenses updates on this blog since August 2013. That’s 54 times consecutively. They are the main reasons why I have been able to consistently write every month. They are a hassle to look back on, though. So a couple of weeks ago, I exported all of...

Read More

Thoughts On The Elimination Of Full Riders For Health Insurance

Variations of this piece of news flooded my Facebook Feed last night. Coincidentally, I am halfway through Taleb’s latest book: Skin In The Game and there’s plenty of interesting applications I can make to this issue. 1. There is a high price to pay for certainty  Personally, both the Mrs and I are not really affected as we are not part of the 29% who are on full-riders. We are covered by NTUC’s Enhanced Income Shield with an additional rider that reduces our co-insurance to 10% and cap hospitalisation expenses to $3,000 a year. A limit of $3,000 of out-of-pocket...

Read More

Expenses Update: February 2018

Finally, a month when I might be able to associate the word “frugal” with our expenses without feeling too sheepish. Even though there was CNY to contend with, it was balanced out by the relatively short month. We spent about $3,500 and we finally managed to reduce some expenses with regards to eating out, especially at restaurants. Let’s see if we can keep this up in March. Eating Out: $432.20 Hawker ($183.20) – This is a short month and I dare say after a couple of years of adjustment, we will be cutting down on “eating out for the sake of...

Read More

Portfolio Update: February 2018

We saw a little bit of volatility at the start of this month. In fact, within a couple of days, our overall portfolio was down by more than $10,000 at one point in time. This episode is a good reminder to myself that market movements are not within my control. I only have autonomy over my own actions. There’s only 3 things I can do in the stock market. Buy, sell or do nothing. In a falling market, I prefer to narrow the choice to 2 to simplify decision-making. Either do nothing or buy some stocks. And yes, most...

Read More

Expenses Update: January 2018

This is probably another frivolous spending month. We spent more than $4,800 in January and besides a bigger than usual restaurant allocation, there were quite a few one-offs like a trip to the dentist and aircon servicing. Well, the higher expenditure is nothing surprising since the Mrs’ birthday falls on January and we are also getting ready for CNY. Moreover, we also celebrated our 10th dating anniversary! Omg, I feel so old.  Since this is a new year, I have made some changes to this expenses reporting front. Besides adding some photos to make it more interesting, it will...

Read More

Profit From Macroeconomic Trends

After several years attempting to prospect companies, I finally recognised that this is not something I intrinsically enjoy. Getting to know how a company really functions is interesting enough but I would rather use my time to read other stuff like geopolitics or even fiction rather than detect potential corporate issues lurking in those dreary annual or quarterly reports. Potential Of Macroeconomic Trends On the other hand, I am more interested in how I can profit from macroeconomic trends. Imagine if I had known 5 years ago that the US was going to recover/grow really well and had invested in...

Read More

My Way Of Paying It Forward

My Own Experience (A Leap Of Faith) It’s been 3.5 years since I left my cushy, well-paying first job in the government service. With nothing concrete lined up then, it was a step into the unknown. A leap of faith. On hindsight, I took a huge risk. But well, I was deeply unhappy with my lifestyle and drastic action was necessary. These days, I count my blessings that things have turned out rather well as a full-time freelancer/self-employed. So I was filled with nostalgia when I came across these posts (here and here) by Jes recently. With a toddler in...

Read More

Portfolio Update: January 2018

Similar to 2017, it’s a terrific start to the year for the markets. Month-on-month, the portfolio managed to increase by $10,000 and the value of the portfolio is now at $438,000. With work gearing up, we managed to inject $2,000 to the portfolio. This also means that the organic gains total $8,000 this month. In fact, all three sub-portfolios registered gains! Even though my stocks are still under-performing the index, I am definitely not complaining. Let’s see how long this bullish sentiment lasts. Overall Portfolio (Value: $438,000) 1. 15HWW Permanent PortfolioIt’s quite incredible that all three of STI ETF, Berk...

Read More

Like us on Facebook

Follow us on Twitter