The Hungry Ghost Month may be around the corner but that does not mean you should leave everything to chance. Here are the tried and tested ways to expel negative energy and invite good ones.
By Khalil Adis
Have you ever stepped into a home and get a creepy and uneasy feeling that you are being watched?
That was exactly how I felt when I once stayed at a friend's place many years ago.
This ghost story happened to me sometime in 2009 when I was covering the Malaysian property market and trying to save on hotel costs.
Located in Sentul, I recall his apartment looked rather run down.
I also remember that it was surrounded by many temples and crematoriums.
Although I felt uneasy, I decided to take on his invitation.
It turned out to be a decision I would regret.
At close to midnight, I kept hearing noises of furniture being dragged in the hall.
I did not think much about this as I thought my friend was busy cleaning.
Then at 3 am, during my sleep, I was attacked by an entity that looked like a black mist.
I could not move and was paralysed by fear.
When I eventually managed to break free, I immediately packed my bags and then stayed up till the break of dawn before leaving the house.
I subsequently texted my friend that I had left, thanked him for his hospitality and related to him about what had happened.
To my horror, he replied that he was not at home.
To cut the story short, I have since exercised precaution especially when I am travelling.
Whether you believe in the supernatural or not, there are some remedies that you can apply to remove negative energy from your home.
This is especially so if the house has been vacant for some time.
#1: Spring clean your home
Regardless of your faith, it is a good idea to conduct a cleansing prayer before moving into your home.
This is especially so if your house had been vacant for some time or if you had bought a home with a particular history (such as a scene of a violent crime).
A cleansing prayer sets the intention that you are now the rightful owner of the property and to expel any unwanted negative energy.
A regular cleaning schedule should also follow to remove dust to keep your home spick and span.
By regularly cleaning your home, it will help to keep the energy in your home clean, positive and uplifted.
#2: Ensure plenty of natural light and ventilation
I recall interviewing Singapore's well-known ghostbuster and this was among his sage advice.
According to him, a home that has plenty of natural light and ventilation attracts good energy while repelling dark ones.
So keep your windows open to let fresh air and sunshine in.
Avoid buying a home that is not exposed to sunlight as they attract dark energy.â
Hoarding is becoming particularly prevalent in Singapore among the elderly, particularly those living in small HDB flats.
Hoarding is a mental disorder that not only negatively impacts the hoarderâs immediate family memberâs quality of life but it makes their home dark and depressing.
Besides, it attracts pests and poses as fire hazards.
If you have too many things at home, then it is time to declutter.
Not only does decluttering makes your home look instantly liveable, but it also helps to break up accumulated energy.
So throw away things that you no longer need to invite fresh energy to your home.
#4: Throw away dead plants
If you have plants at home or regularly buy fresh flowers, be sure to throw away those that are already dead.
This is because such plants negatively impact your environment while preventing fresh, new, energy from coming in.
If you really must have plants, then consider low maintenance plants like money tree.
Smudging involves the burning of herbs to remove negative energy and to clear the energy field.
Also referred to as space clearing, smudging is usually done before moving to a new home, after a gathering or after a particularly negative event at home such as an argument.
White sage works best and is very popular.
Click here for a range of Space clearing smudge sticks
The dreaded R-word is something we will have to talk about as Singapore’s economy has slowed down considerably.
By Khalil Adis
You have probably heard it.
The ongoing trade war is impacting our economy.
Figures from the Ministry of Trade and Industry last week confirmed this showing that Singapore’s economy grew by 0.1 per cent in the second quarter of 2019.
This is much slower than the 1.1 per cent growth in the previous quarter.
It was also the city-state’s lowest growth in a decade.
Additionally, the latest data from Singapore’s trade agency Enterprise Singapore showed that Singapore’s exports fell 17.3 per cent in June in both electronic and non-electronic exports.
This marked the fourth straight month of year-on-year decline.
While we may bemoan about the state of the economy, we can also use it as an opportunity to improve ourselves.
Here are the three ways to recession-proof your job:
#1: Invest in yourself
We often speak about investing in stocks, shares, unit trusts and properties but rarely ever do we invest in ourselves.
When I talk about investing in yourself I am referring to constantly upgrading our skills to stay relevant with the changing market.
With the advent of technology and apps, our world has changed by leaps and bounds.
Disruption is the order of the day.
From Grab to Airbnb, they are disrupting traditional businesses and if we do not keep up, we risk becoming obsolete.
For example, I used to write 2,000-word articles but I realised that consumers do not have time to digest everything.
With social media, they want news in bite-sized nuggets that are easy to understand.
As such, I had to read up on what makes an article ‘clickable’ and constantly rewrite my headline to make it catchy.
One such ‘unicorn’ article was a story that I wrote for iProperty Malaysia. It turned out to be the number one story in Malaysia last year!
Likewise, in your chosen field, you will need to react to changing consumer trends.
For example, if you are in marketing, you might want to understand how to use social media like Facebook and Instagram to plug your products to consumers.
This could mean curating interesting content, videos and photos with a call-to-action button to get more leads.
The library is a good start as it offers a vast array of books to do some research.
Also, you can use your SkillsFuture credit to sign up for courses.
For a full list of course, click here
#2: Have multiple income streams
Let's face it - retrenchments are on the rise.
Instead of worrying and being unprepared if you will be axed, why not have a back-up plan just in case?
Don’t just depend on your salary for your income.
Instead, use it to develop other revenue streams.
For example, you could consider opening a bank account that offers attractive interest rates.
DBS has a Multiplier Account that pays your interest when you use it to bank in your salary, pay your mortgages and manage your expenses.
You might also consider investing in Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) which you can buy direct from your local banks like DBS and OCBC.
Typically REITs invest in various properties such as shopping malls, industrial properties and so on.
REITs are paid every quarterly or every six months with an average return of around 6 per cent.
That’s better than putting your money in your bank account.
However, do read up on the various REITs in the market before you invest.
#3: Start an online business
Starting a business does not necessarily have to be capital intensive.
Online business is one such example.
Online shopping is the way to go as consumers now preferring to buy things online rather than in the store.
If you haven’t already noticed, some well-known retailers on Orchard Road have already rolled down their shutters due to high rental and operating costs.
This makes e-shopping a viable market provided you have the right products.
To set up an online store will require you to buy a domain where you can design the website on your own such as via Wix or Weebly.
This will set you back at around less than US$100 annually.
An independent analysis from yours truly