Today, I was in the church service, and pastor shared about what causes discouragements. And interestingly he mentioned about Singaporean lifestyle.. we seem to work so much, then when we go for vacation, we never really rested.. but our minds are still working. And before we realise, we are back home to work again.
I pondered for a while about our lifestyle as Singaporeans, and compared to my experience with my recent trips in Seychelles. Singaporeans are definitely hardworking, driven and often too demanding.. yes, we can be perfectionists. Our environment, and the way we are brought up in this island has made us to be this way. We are always striving for excellence, and tolerated little for any standards lower than that. But the long term result is : we become kiasu (behaviour that expresses fear of losing), impatient and often we become less gracious... which I have begun to see more and more as I worked in this industry.
I was just comparing the clients I have served these past 7 years. We have a good pool of expatriates, foreigners, as well as Singaporean clients. And among all, the weddings that guests really enjoyed and are spontaneous tend to be the former i.e. expat and foreigners' weddings, or when one of the couple is a non-Singaporean. In the past I often wondered why those weddings are generally more fun to be in, and more interesting to plan.. and today I concluded some observations :
1) Singaporeans have failed to see that wedding is a celebration, not a showcase. It is not all about how well the wedding looks, but rather how great the wedding is felt. When the host learns to let go and enjoy, the guests' emotions are influenced as well. We often hear parents say I want the guests to feel good.. but often I wish to remind them feeling good is a community effort, when you choose to feel good, the people around you will somehow be rubbed on to feel likewise)
2) Singaporeans, pls do not be so conscious. I always love the sight of guests jumping onto the dance floor and dance, party and have fun. But it is hard to see that from a traditional Singaporean wedding esp it is held in Singapore. I could still remember I did a Bali wedding for a group of Singaporeans aunties and uncles.. and my bride was surprised that her relatives danced so much in Bali, something she has never seen when she was with them in Singapore. Why is this so? We care too much what people say about us, and allow that subtle voices to prevent us from being true to ourselves.
Breakaway self-consciousness.. and you will start to enjoy the freedom to being true, being yourself. It's ok to laugh over yourself, you are what you think you are. So stop becoming what people think you are, but learn to accept yourself, and be true.
3) A perfect wedding doesn't mean a perfect rating score. What makes a perfect wedding? I often asked. Is it all about 100 points for good service, good food, 100 points for a beautiful gown, beautiful bride, it is all about 10o points for impressive aesthetic setup etc etc..??? NO NO NO.. it's not abt scoring 100 points. We are not taking exams, we are creating and capturing moments.
Every moment is personal, sacred and subjective. What one envisions a perfect wedding is not the same from another. So instead of worrying whether you can score the perfect score for your wedding from all your guests, learn to be live in that perfect moment you have desired of.. when you are happily married, when you enjoy every minute with your loved ones, when you dance your heart out and have a good time..
I have so much stories to share with many couples.. and esp to Singaporean couples. I am proud to be a Singaporean, don't get me wrong, and I am a true breed Singaporean as well.. but having worked in this industry for long, and having travelled so much, I have come to a conclusion : learn to enjoy every moment you live in, learn to let go, and learn to experience the pleasant surprises God has created for each of us.
And for Singaporeans esp, let's learn to be gracious, when there is grace, there is true beauty..something can be planned, something is God's given. And life is perceived all together differently when you see thru the eyes of graciousness.