What to Do If You’re Stuck in a Job You Hate

We’ve all been there—stuck in a job that feels like a never-ending grind. A friend of mine has been thinking about quitting for ages but hesitates due to the high cost of living and family commitments. It’s tough to stay in a job you dislike just to stay afloat financially. I’ve been in that position too.

But you do have options. Here are some tips to handle it:


Take a step back and list what aspects of your job you can control versus what you cannot. This might include seeking help from your co-worker or making the most of your downtime. Knowing your limits can help you make better decisions.


Remember, your job is just one part of your life. Engaging in hobbies, spending time with friends, or volunteering can offer fulfillment and lessen the pressure on your job to provide all your emotional needs. Many find that pursuing outside interests brings a renewed sense of purpose. Try pickleball or visit local museums!


Assess both the positive and negative aspects of your job. While the drawbacks might be obvious, do not forget to consider the benefits—such as a steady paycheck, a structured day, workplace friendships, or a sense of contribution. For the negatives, think about possible solutions, either on your own or with your company’s help.


Say that you’ve weighed your options and things in your current company are still grim. Sometimes, a change of environment can refresh your outlook. Be open to exploring new professional fields or industries. Even if you’re not ready to leave your current job, learning about different settings can help you understand what you truly want.


Worrying about a potential pay cut when changing jobs is common. However, a new role might offer better compensation or benefits. Salary can depend on various factors like industry, location, and your skills. If increasing your income is a priority, it’s often achievable with the right strategy.


If your job is negatively impacting your health or happiness, it may be time to plan a transition. Start networking, update your resume, and think about your next career move. Even if you do not land a new job immediately, laying the groundwork can set you up for success. In the meantime, focus on your well-being and stay connected with friends.

Image Credits: unsplash.com

Being stuck in a job you hate does not have to be your only option. By understanding your situation, weighing your choices, and taking proactive steps, you can move towards a more fulfilling career. Remember, you have the power to create a path that aligns with your needs, goals, and well-being.

Sources: 1 & 2


Why Renting is the New Home Ownership in Singapore

With skyrocketing property prices and evolving lifestyles, more Singaporeans are finding renting to be a practical and often better choice. Here’s why renting is becoming the new home ownership in the Lion City.


Renting offers the freedom to move easily, whether for job opportunities, lifestyle changes, or personal preferences.

For instance, my friend, a marketing executive, recently secured a job in a different part of the city. As a renter, she could effortlessly relocate closer to her new workplace in Raffles Place, avoiding the hassle and cost of selling a property. This move significantly reduced her commute, giving her more time for herself and the things she cares about.


Owning a home in Singapore requires substantial financial commitments, from hefty down payments to long-term mortgage repayments. According to the PropertyGuru Singapore Consumer Sentiment Study H2 2022, younger Singaporeans (aged 22 to 29) are increasingly turning to renting due to insufficient savings for property purchases. This is not surprising, given that young, unmarried Singaporeans face restrictions in the HDB market. These restrictions include the need to apply as a couple or family unit, or wait until they turn 35.

Property costs can be overwhelming, but renting allows for better cash flow management. Without the need for a large initial payout, individuals can invest in their businesses, save more, or enjoy experiences that enhance their lives.


Owning property involves more than just the purchase price. Maintenance, repairs, and renovations can accumulate costs over time. Moreover, property values may depreciate.

On the other hand, renters are free from these additional expenses since landlords usually handle property upkeep. This leads to significant savings and less financial stress.


Renting can provide access to prime locations that might be unaffordable or unavailable to buy. Living close to the city center, with its vibrant lifestyle and convenient amenities, often comes with a high price tag for buyers. Renters, however, can enjoy these benefits without the long-term financial burden of a mortgage.


For many young professionals and expatriates, renting suits their lifestyle better. The flexibility to move closer to work, live in trendy neighborhoods, or enjoy various amenities often outweighs the traditional desire for home ownership. Renting supports a lifestyle that values convenience over long-term financial commitments.

For instance, my cousins, who are avid travelers, leave home once or twice a month. They can easily spend a month exploring Europe since they aren’t tied down by home ownership and its maintenance.


The property market in Singapore can be unpredictable, influenced by economic conditions, government policies, and global events. Renting provides a cushion against market volatility, as renters are not directly affected by property value fluctuations. This stability is particularly appealing in uncertain economic times.


While home ownership has long been seen as a cornerstone of financial security, the trend in Singapore is shifting. Renting is increasingly recognized as a practical, flexible, and financially sound alternative.

Image Credits: unsplash.com

As the saying goes, home is where the heart is – and for many, that heart is happier and freer in a rented space.

Sources: 1,2, & 3


Why Is It So Difficult To Save Money?

As I looked at my balance, I was overwhelmed by how fast my salary had disappeared. I’m not the only one! Many of us handle daily expenses and unexpected costs one day at a time, especially those living paycheck to paycheck. With the high cost of living, unnecessary purchases, and unforeseen expenses, why is it so challenging to save money? Here are some key reasons:


Debt can be a major obstacle to saving money. The desire to pay off debt rather than save is strong, especially with revolving debt like credit cards. Interest rates on these accounts can fluctuate, often increasing the amount owed.

For example, the average interest rate on credit cards in Singapore is around 25% per annum. Consolidating debt with a low- or no-interest card or taking out a lower-interest personal loan can help ease this burden.


Social pressures can lead to overspending. Maybe friends invite you to an expensive restaurant, and you go along, only to split a hefty bill. Or perhaps you use a bonus to buy a status watch to fit in with big-spender pals. I recall a colleague who stole money from the company just to maintain face in their religious community.

If you find yourself overspending with friends, consider more affordable activities like museum-hopping, hiking, or local events. These are simple ways to save money while still enjoying time with friends.


Your earnings need to cover your expenses, but sometimes unexpected costs outpace your paycheck. Keeping a budget helps track spending and identify areas for adjustment. For example, if your rent increases by 12%, you’ll need to find the extra money. In such cases, a side hustle might be beneficial.


Shopping excessively doesn’t necessarily mean always filling your online cart. It could mean not being strategic about your spending. I’m guilty of this, especially since I prefer designer makeup and skincare for my sensitive skin. For instance, daily trips to a grocery store are more expensive than bi-weekly bulk shopping trips.

Making lists, tracking prices, and using coupons and cashback offers can help save money and even make the process enjoyable.


Saving money is challenging if you don’t have a compelling reason. You might be overly focused on the present or unsure about future goals. Creating a savings plan starts with asking yourself where you want to be financially in the next 5 to 10 years and what you need to do to have “enough” money.


Many people debate whether the rising cost of living is as bad as it seems, but most Singaporeans have felt the pinch in recent years. Inflation affects housing, utilities, and groceries, and wages haven’t kept up.


Saving for the future isn’t a natural human instinct. Our brains struggle to think about the future in concrete terms. However, we can either trick our minds into better future planning or make saving money automatic. Behavioral economist and Nobel Prize winner Richard Thaler suggests, “If you want to help people accomplish some goal, make it easy.”

Image Credits: unsplash.com

By understanding the reasons why you need to save and making mindful adjustments, saving money can become more achievable.

Sources: 1,2, & 3


Expensive Expat Living: Singapore Takes 2nd Spot in Asia’s Costliest Cities

Living in Asia as an expat offers dynamic urban landscapes and a rich cultural blend, making it an enticing prospect. Yet, this allure comes at a price. According to recent studies, several Asian cities rank among the world’s most expensive places for expatriates.

In a 2023 study by ECA International, cities like Hong Kong, Singapore, Seoul, Tokyo, and Shanghai made it to the top 10 global rankings for expat living costs. The rising cost of living, driven by high rental prices, inflation, and strong currencies, propels these cities up the ranks.

Image Credits: unsplash.com


Singapore, renowned for its efficient infrastructure, safety, and quality of life, has seen a significant increase in expatriate living costs. The Lion City now ranks as the second most expensive city globally for expats. According to ECA International, soaring rental costs play a crucial role in this rise, making it increasingly challenging for expats to find affordable housing.


While Singapore’s ascent is remarkable, it’s not alone in experiencing a surge in living costs. According to the Mercer Cost of Living Survey for 2024, here are the most expensive cities for expats in Asia:

1. Hong Kong – This city frequently tops the list due to overwhelming housing prices and a competitive job market, yet it continues to attract international businesses and expats alike.

2. Singapore – Rapidly rising rental costs place Singapore as the second most expensive city globally for expats.

3. Shanghai – As a global financial hub, Shanghai has seen significant increases in housing expenses, cementing its status as one of Asia’s costliest cities.

4. Seoul – Known for its tech-savvy lifestyle and vibrant culture, Seoul demands a high price, particularly in housing and education.

5. Tokyo – With its blend of tradition and modernity, Tokyo’s high living costs are driven by pricey real estate and high standards of living.

Image Credits: unsplash.com


As Asia evolves into a hub for international business and lifestyle, understanding the financial landscape is crucial for prospective expatriates. High living costs in cities like Singapore offer world-class amenities and cultural experiences. Yet, balancing luxury and expenses is tricky. It will take time to navigate these financial pressures while enjoying the unique city living.

Sources: 1, 2, & 3


Sneaky Tricks Restaurants Use to Increase Your Bill

Dining out in Singapore is an experience that blends a diverse culinary scene with sophisticated ambiance. However, have you ever wondered why you sometimes end up spending more than you planned? Well, restaurants are masters of subtle psychological and environmental techniques designed to encourage you to indulge.

Here are some clever tricks they use to make you open your wallet wider.


Menus in Singaporean restaurants are often carefully crafted to guide your choices and increase spending. High-margin items are highlighted with pictures, bold fonts, or boxes around them to grab your attention. Expensive items are strategically placed next to moderately priced ones to make the latter seem more reasonable.

Image Credits: unsplash.com

Fewer choices can actually increase your likelihood of ordering high-profit items. When overwhelmed with too many options, diners tend to choose the familiar or highlighted options.


The environment in which you dine significantly impacts how much you spend. Soft lighting and mellow music create a relaxing atmosphere, making diners more likely to order additional courses or drinks. Larger tables and comfortable seating can encourage longer stays and more orders. Conversely, smaller tables can make you feel cramped, potentially leading you to leave sooner and spend less.


Restaurants often employ portion control tricks to maximize profit. Waitstaff are trained to suggest larger portions or additional sides, often making these suggestions sound like deals you can’t refuse. Smaller portions on larger plates can make the dish seem more luxurious and justify a higher price.


Prices are rarely rounded off, and there’s a reason for that! A dish priced at S$9.99 instead of S$10.00 makes it appear cheaper, even though the difference is negligible. This tactic, known as charm pricing, is widely used because it effectively tricks your brain into perceiving a better deal.


Where you sit can also influence your spending. Window seats and central locations are prime spots often reserved for larger groups or those ordering more, subtly encouraging you to spend more to “earn” the better view. Positioning the bar where it’s highly visible and accessible encourages diners to start with drinks, increasing the overall bill.


Creating a sense of urgency can drive spending. Limited-time offers and seasonal dishes create a FOMO, prompting you to order these items before they disappear. Moreover, bundling items together at a slight discount encourages you to spend more than you might have planned. Not to mention, happy hour specials and exclusive deals also contribute significantly to this effect.


The power of suggestion is another subtle but effective strategy. Highlighting “chef’s specials” or “most popular” dishes can guide your choices, leading you to order higher-margin items. Personal recommendations from friendly waitstaff can be hard to resist, especially if they are trained to suggest higher-profit items.

Image Credits: unsplash.com

Understanding how restaurants influence your spending can help you make more mindful choices while still enjoying the rich culinary experiences the country has to offer. Remember, being aware of these tricks doesn’t mean you can’t indulge; it just means you’re doing so on your own terms!