I read this article and was amused yet disturbed by the implications.
According to a survey by AXA, affluent Singaporeans are the most pessimistic in Asia when it comes to their future as compared to their counterparts in China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand. However, Singaporeans are also the least affected by the economic downturn as compared to the respondents from the rest of the countries.
The cautionary rhetoric spewing from local dailies has given this grey doomsday hue to almost every aspect of life. I know the employers love dangling these drippy dismalities to shut the traps of anyone who expresses dissent or possibilities of labour explotiation. I know the bank customers are getting aggressive, apparently to the point of bringing a chopper to wave at the manager if industry rumours serve correctly. I know of so many people who have switched motivational gears from raring -to go ambitious” to slumpy, shruggy just-don’t-retrench-me-can.
I just wonder if all this may be excessive. I remember what CK told me, how in HK, life still seems pretty as-per-normal. It’s only when he got back here that he felt the despair and paranoia of the situation.
I guess this is just reflective of the worrywart kiasi culture that has given us the drive to be workaholics and got the economy running these past few decades. However, this culture is SO NOT suitable for surviving a recession. Just perpetuating this panic cycle further through the media, the office gossip machine, the vicious online blame-everyone-but-ourselves-for-this-mess is really toxic.
I kind of like how Khaw Boon Wan (go Sembawang!) told people to use this time to start exercising more. At least this is constructive and will give a nice punching bag outlet! I am not so hot about the going for retraining bit as I’ve been for TOO MANY useless courses to know what a waste of time and resources this can be and only makes one even more bored and sian with life (and the hellish e-mail load to clear post-training).
I think this is the time for (sincere) Oprah-wannabes, (talented) folksy singers with happy songs and (nice) gym instructors to come to the forefront and give Singaporeans a bunch of reasons to have smiley faces.
Jaton, my happy Pinoy bro, any other ideas?
I am no peppy Disney gal, but I will endeavour to write more Whee! category-type posts in the meantime. For sanity’s sake, if anything else.