My Ahjussi (My Mister)

My Ahjussi (My Mister) is a tvN drama from 2018 starring Lee Sun kyun and IU that received both critical acclaim and commercial success. You can now see it on Netflix. The drama is a heart-warming story about a young woman and three middle-aged brothers struggling with life’s typical hardships. It offers 16 episodes filled with relatable situations and life lessons that we can all learn from.

The Story:

Park Dong Hoon (Lee Sun Kyun from Parasite) is a well paid building engineer around forty years of age, married to pretty lawyer Yoon Hee (Lee Ji Ah from Beethoven Virus). They have one young son whom they sent to America to school to learn English, and he is younger than ten years old (I didn’t understand that for beans!). Usually when a couple is married and in love and have a baby they want to raise it themselves, not send it half-way around the world to school! This, together with the fact that there is never any physical relationship depicted between husband and wife, not even one hug, makes one doubt that any love really exists between this married couple. We soon find out why. Dong Hoon’s wife is secretly having an affair with a senior executive at the construction company where Dong Hoon works, an executive who has always been jealous of Dong Hoon’s professional capabilities and talents. Yoon Hee tells her lover that she wants to divorce Dong Hoon and marry the executive, who is named Do Joon Young (Kim Young Min, also from Beethoven Virus), but it’s obvious to the astute audience members that this adulterous bum has no interest in ever marrying her. He’s just using her to get back at Dong Hoon for earning more respect at work than he has attained.

Dong Hoon is a member of a close knit family who all lives in the same city neighborhood, including two brothers and his aging mother Byeon Yo Soon (Ko Doo Shim from Dear My Friends and The Snow Queen) who still live together. The oldest brother, Sang Hoon (Park Ho San) is chronically unemployed and separated from his long-suffering wife Ae Ryun (Jung Young Joo). Gi Hoon (Song Sae Byeok) is the youngest brother who also has trouble finding work after he blew a chance to become a movie director. Dong Hoon hires a temp in his office named Lee Ji An (IU from Dream High ) who lives in financial and emotional distress daily, owing loan sharks a lot of money. She supports her disabled deaf and mute grandmother Bon Ae (Son Sook) who is unable to move by herself so Ji An often has to steal a grocery cart temporarily from a convenience store to wheel her around in it when she wants to go outside. Ji An is continuously harassed by a loan shark named Gwang Il (Chang Ki Yong) who obviously also has the hots for her. He regularly shows up at her apartment door and beats her up because she won’t give in to him sexually.

Despite everything going on Dong Hoon still cares about Ji An, and even assists her in getting her grandmother in a senior living situation that is government run so she doesn’t have to worry about her ailing grandmother’s physical needs anymore. Granny isn’t quite sure what is going on with Ji An and Dong Hoon but to her he is an angel. Ji An falls even more deeply in love with him, yet still seems to be carrying out her plan to destroy him at work! Talk about a troubled girl. All this time I kept hoping she would end up acting like a double agent and destroy the wicked Joon Young instead.

These two brothers decide to start a cleaning company to make money and at first they are embarrassed by their work but then they begin to succeed at it and feel more comfortable admitting what they do for a living. If you have to clean for a living at least do it well! Gi Hoon has had unresolved feelings for a young lady who used to be an actress he directed years ago, named Yoo Ra (Nara), and they meet up again when she is still struggling as an actress and it’s obvious an attraction is still there between them. He rebuffs her at first but you just know that won’t last long she’s far too pretty!

As we near the end of the story there are lots of surprises in store for the audience. Those who are hoping for Dong Hoon to finally wake up and realize how dead his marriage is, how it’s been empty for years, how he really loves Ji An instead of his wife, are going to be disappointed. In so many ways the lead male character Dong Hoon is admirable, but in many other ways he seems totally clueless about life and love and his own feelings. Often I just wanted to shake him out of his daze, so that he would start making good choices about his life, work, marriage, and feelings for Ji An. There was even a scene near the end where he just breaks down at home all alone and doesn’t even seem to understand why he is crying in the first place.

In Conclusion:

We have many Korean dramas that don’t hesitate to show physical relationships in “Noona Romances” (Older Women, Younger Men stories), so why does it suddenly matter when the male lead character is a decade or more older than the female character? In real life there are millions of December-May romances, so why not in television dramas?

This show is like its titular protagonist; both start out quiet, gloomy and unassuming, but over the course of 16 episodes, both reveal themselves to be beautiful, moving heroes who show us the power of kindness, and grace of humanity. Good writing, on point directing, and outstanding performances from the cast all come together to make My Mister an absorbing watch that feels organic, real, and raw. The OST, which is delicate, thoughtful, and ethereal in turn, is meticulously crafted and applied, and effectively lifts the watch to another level. Dark and beautiful. And at the same time, warm and beautiful. A must-see.

Reasons why Gong Yoo should be an INFJ

Grab your wine and let’s dive into this!

This write-up is prompted by a fellow fangirl @Haiku_Gongyoo on what we think is the MBTI type of our boy, South Korean Superstar Gong Yoo. The beautiful thing about him is that the first time you look at him, you’ll probably go “he is the guy girls are so mad about?” and then you see him in one of his movies/dramas/interviews and become one of those girls. He is an acquired taste that matures like a fine wine. I find him attractive for so many reasons; he is down to earth in spite of his huge stardom, portrays roles so well, knows to sing, is tall-sexy-goofy, wants to direct someday revealing his brainy side. All those qualities make him so much adorable and lovable. His eyes are something else entirely. I have watched many Korean dramas and movies but I have found my favorite in Gong Yoo after all.

I chose to not base my observations on the roles he plays because that is all make-believe and INFJs are notorious social chameleons, masking into the role they are expected to be. Irrespective of their profession, INFJs are actors of their own right, projecting themselves as what is expected of them. They hate conflicts big time and can go to great lengths to avoid them altogether. The basis of my observations are his Interviews and several Youtube videos that I will try to link below. Though I am a Human Resource professional who is a Psychology buff, I do not claim to be an authority on MBTI personality types. My interest in MBTI stems from finally understanding myself better as an INFJ and also dealing with two INFJ friends. I have ulterior motives in proving Gong Yoo as an INFJ because I respect and love him deeply and want him to be a part of my Gang. With that disclaimer out let me elaborate in layman terms why I think he is an INFJ.

You can tell he’s genuine just by watching his interviews, and his answers, damn, I’ve never seen a heartthrob as humble as Gong Yoo. And let’s not forget his shyness and his laughs! Anyways I think we need to think more objectively about this topic because the audience generally focuses too much on his looks and we fangirls want to prove that he is much more than just a pretty face. We love good stories and good performances; we are not that irrational consumers after all.

So here we go.

He is a deep thinker and works for a cause bigger than himself

The more I watch his interviews the more I fall for the actor instead of the character he played. Now I am more objective in looking at him as an actor, not as the cool characters he plays in his films. He thinks we love Kim Shin’s character but he couldn’t be more disillusioned. No Gongyooshi we do not like you because of your characters, we like you because you are like this, you are honest, you are pure, you are humble and handsome. No character of his would ever suffice his real personality. Right from lobbying for the Dogani Law to be passed to the recent donation for Corona fund, he shows social awareness and willingness to make a positive change with his stardom. We love that. Everything about him is warm, the way he smiles, talks, walks, acts, and is perceived on and off-camera.

He is not superficial

There’s something about Gong Yoo’s interviews that feel more sincere/authentic than other celebrities. He doesn’t shy away from saying things that might come off as politically incorrect: struggling with internal demons, not liking fame, the complexities of being indebted to fans but their parasitic nature, the unpleasantness of serving in the military, etc. He always tries to appreciate other people’s perspectives while asserting his own and that is commendable.

He is sensitive to the emotions of others

He apologized to fans about being brash to them years ago and the respect that he gives to his fans on a fan sign event is really commendable.  Which Superstar would oblige a fangirl by putting a ring on her finger? His co-star Jeon Do Yeon also mentioned how he cooked braised chicken on her birthday in Finland when she was tired of eating bread all the time. Such a good Husband material I tell you.

He is a Perfectionist Loner

INFJs are known to be perfectionists to the point that they tend to procrastinate. They are always criticizing themselves and those they love and hence are dissatisfied as a default mode. So, he takes commitment very seriously. His Personal trainer recently narrated how GY called to ask if it was fine if he had beef instead of chicken. He says he really admired his commitment to be a perfectionist when it comes to his roles.

Also, he comes off as a loner, preferring his own company over any other human being. Prefers fishing and chilling at Jeju Island and takes a two-year break because he was overwhelmed by working on three projects simultaneously in 2016. This may sound extreme to most but as an INFJ myself I can vouch that it was necessary for him to do so. We can only give when our cup is full and being surrounded by people drains our energy. Not because he hates people but he either absorbs people’s energies and prefers people who are mentally stimulating or someone around whom he can be comfortable.

He is complex and intense

He is someone who is loved by so many but can’t comfortably live his life like a normal person. He must feel extremely lonely and it’s sad that this is the downside of being famous. This guy has a depth that can’t be described in words. He prefers art films and has a very profound connection with his craft. One of the more intelligent actors around, Korean or otherwise and you can see that in the projects he chooses, the causes he endorses, and the way he answers questions asked to him.

Hard to get to know

I feel for him, I don’t envy his fame but I admire his tolerance and acceptance that this is his life. He says he enjoys the fame but I can’t help but wonder if he just tells himself that or if he is truly happy.  Now I know why his eyes look so sad and tired all the time. Poor thing he must feel so lonely, I hope fans respect his privacy though, so he can continue to recharge and grace us with his beauty.

Prone to depression

He has mentioned in this interview that he struggled with self-image in his 20s and I am sure he does now too but just has learned to mask it well. He seems to be a rational and sentimental person who has a lot on his mind. Gong Hye-Jin says he is a worrywart and thinks 100 times before buying a simple t-shirt. So, imagine how much he is worried about the things that really matter to him. He isn’t only worrying about disappointing his fans but also the team who works with him all these years and helped him along the way.

Protective of his privacy

He is not on Social Media and it’s tough to spot him even in this age of digitalization. From an INFJ perspective, he gets enough exposure thanks to his celebrity status and mandatory meets that he needs to conduct, he does not feel any need to socialize other than that. Also, his INFJ brain has convinced him that he is always right, so he will not bother to come online even if asked to so.

I can go on and on about my favorite Oppa but my intuition tells me he is an INFJ. Why you ask? It would be like explaining the taste of water. I can only hope someone cajoles him into taking that test and my hope/ speculation is proved. So, this man who contributes to great cause out of sheer outrage for injustice, and when asked about it, immediately says that he didn’t do it alone that it was a collective effort, that anyone else would have done the same. If this isn’t a sign of a great man, I don’t know what is.

INFJ or not, Saranghae Oppa.

What do you think?


What is depression really?

The traditional view of achievement, like the traditional view of
depression, needs overhauling. Our workplaces and our home operate
on the conventional assumption that success results from a combination of
talent and desire.

When failure occurs, it is because either talent or desire
is missing. But failure also can occur when talent and desire are present
in abundance but optimism is missing.

What if the great majority of depressions are much simpler than the
biological psychiatrists and the psychoanalysts believe?

1. What if depression is not something you are motivated to bring upon
yourself but something that just descends upon you?
2. What if depression is not an illness but a severe low’ mood?
3. What if you are not a prisoner of past conflicts in the way you react?
4. What if depression is in fact set off by present troubles?
5. What if you are not a prisoner of your genes or your brain chemistry,
6. What if depression arises from mistaken inferences ‘we make from
two Ways of Looking at Life, the tragedies and setbacks we all experience over the course of a life?
7.What if depression occurs merely when we harbor pessimistic beliefs
about the causes of our setbacks?
8. What if we can unlearn pessimism and acquire the skills of looking
at setbacks optimistically?

Also what if the traditional view of the components of success is wrong?
1. What if there is a third factor-optimism or pessimis~that matters
as much as talent or desire?
2. What if you can have all the talent and desire necessary-yet, if you
are a pessimist, still fail?
3.What if optimists do better at school, at work, and on the playing
4.What if optimism is a learned skill, one that can be permanently
5.What if we can instill this skill in our children?

What do you think? Let me know 🙂

Study Tips For Homeschooling

Source:Homeschooling by Irina Kotko

Since Lockdown everyone is at home and many School going students are forced to study at home so penning down few pointers that I think every student studying at home and their parents might benefit from:

  1. Set up a homework area. Free of distraction, well lit, with all necessary supplies handy.
  2. Set up a homework routine. When and where it gets done. Studies have clearly shown that students who establish a regular routine are better organized and, as a result, more
  3. Set homework priorities. Actually, just make the point that homework is the priority before TV, before playing Pub G, whatever.
  4. Parents should make reading a habit, for children, certainly, but also for yourselves. Kids will inevitably do what you do, not what you say (even if you say not to do what you do).
  5. Turn off the TV. Or at the very least, severely limit when and how much TV-watching is appropriate. This may be the toughest suggestion to enforce. I know. I’m the parent of a
  6. Talk to the teachers. Find out what your kids are supposed to be learning. If you don’t know the books they’re supposed to be reading, what’s expected of them in class, and how
    much homework they should be scheduling, you can’t really give them the help they need.
  7. Encourage and motivate, but don’t nag them to do their homework. It doesn’t work. The more you insist, the quicker they will tune you out.
  8. Supervise their work, but don’t fall into the trap of doing their homework. Checking (i.e., proofreading) a paper, for example, is a positive way to help your child in school. But if
    you simply put in corrections without your child learning from her mistakes, you’re not helping her at all…except in the belief that she is not responsible for her own work.
  9. Praise them when they succeed, but don’t overpraise them for mediocre work. Kids know when you’re being insincere and, again, will quickly tune you out.
  10. Convince them of reality. (This is for older students.) Okay, I’ll admit it’s almost as much of a stretch as turning off Netflix, but learning and believing that the real world will not
    care about their grades, but will measure them by what they know and what they can do, is a lesson that will save many tears (probably yours). It’s probably never too early to (carefully) let your boy or girl genius get the message that life is not fair.
  11. If you can afford it, get your kid(s) a computer and all the software they can handle. There really is no avoiding it: Your kids, whatever their ages, absolutely must be computer savvy in order to survive in and after school.
  12. Turn off the Netflix already! At least minimize it or treat it as a reward after a day’s hard work.
  13. Get wired. The Internet is the greatest invention of our age and an unbelievable tool for students of any age. It is impossible for a college student to succeed without the ability to surf online, and nearly impossible for younger students. They’ve got to be connected.
  14. Turn off Instant Messaging(Messenger, Whatsapp) while doing homework. They will attempt to convince you that they can write a term paper, do their geometry homework, and message their friends at the same time. Once upon a time, I used to think that the best study area is in front of the TV. But now I know it is the best way to not give 100% to your work or study.

So enough of Gyaan already and back to my reading session.

I-T-I-A Formula for Self Confidence

With confidence, you have won before you have started

“Self-esteem isn’t everything, it’s just that there’s nothing without it”- Gloria Steinem

Building confidence similar to bringing about any personal change. First, develop self-awareness: know yourself, acknowledge that there are aspects of yourself that you wish to change, and understand what has stopped you feeling confident so far.

Then apply the I-T-I-A Formula© (pronounced eye-tea-ah):

■ Assert your intention to be confident, and make a commitment.

■ Change your thinking. This includes changing restrictive attitudes and beliefs.

■ Use your imagination. Imagine yourself as a confident person.

■ Act as if you are already confident. The more you speak and behave confidently, the more confident you will become.

All four parts of the I-T-I-A Formula© are essential, otherwise, the change is unlikely to be permanent, or worse, nothing may change at all. If this sounds a little daunting, don’t worry, this entire concept is designed around these five elements self-awareness, intention, thinking, imagination, and acting ‘as if’. You will be introduced to them in small, practical steps to make it as easy as possible for you.

All I ask is that you apply what you learn, stick with it, and be patient. Entrenched habits don’t change overnight but you need to start somewhere.

A Bad Economy Is a Great Opportunity

Instead of fearing the waves ,we should learn to navigate through it

A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty —Winston Churchill

As we continue to face the worst economic times since the Great Depression along with the Pandemic it is only natural to be worried. Sometimes it feels like the challenging financial times are never-ending. Despite the gloom, I know that the glory days will be back soon. History and experience tell me so.

Many companies in history and smaller ones too thrived during a bad economy. For example, Microsoft, founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen, was started during a recession in 1975. During that time, unemployment was high and gas prices were through the roof due to OPEC’s decision to increase prices drastically. A few other companies founded during difficult economic times are Disney, IBM, and General Motors. Similarly, many companies already in existence have made comebacks during challenging financial periods. Perhaps the most familiar and recent example is Apple, which began its resurgence in 2001 during the dotcom bust and the effects of the September 11, 2001, tragedy. As I reflect on companies that weathered the storm, I want to remind myself that 2020 is also no different.

Despite the bad signs, I am fortunate that my youth(?!?)and temerity enables me to see the world through a positive lens. I know that hard work would pay off, no matter what the circumstances. It certainly would. In short, entrepreneurs do not allow a bad economy to hold them back from accomplishing their goals. Ironically, poor economic conditions often have the opposite effect; they motivate entrepreneurs more and propel them to success even faster.

Times are not so great as I write, but entrepreneurs ignore the zeitgeist and create positive circumstances. They roll up their sleeves and get to work, anticipating the next growth period. That’s where I want you to be: ready to grab the bull by its horns and ride.

Indeed unprecedented times call for unprecedented actions.

Writing is discipline

As you approach the task of publishing writing, accept that practically everyone strives at it. Remind yourself that writing is a “plastic art” (Smith,  1994 )

It’s been almost 10 days that I have not written anything. Not because I didn’t want to; not because I didn’t have the time but because I had a lot on my mind. I felt as if I wrote when I didn’t feel like it, I would be doing myself a big disservice. With writing, as with physical exercise, there are some who can never seem to “find the time” to do it, some who do the minimum(like me), others who make it part of the daily routine, and still others who are positively addicted to it.

Writing can be shaped to your emotions they say though I feel vulnerable to pen down. to improve as a writer one needs to put all that they go through on paper, and that somewhere amongst the thousands of outlets, there is a place where you can publish a well-conceptualized and carefully prepared manuscript.

So instead of assuming that widely published authors write with ease, realize that they are comparable to athletes who compete in the Olympics; they have trained extensively, built endurance, worked with expert coaches, and learned the rules of the game.

When the challenges of writing are under discussion, people are much more curious about possible shortcuts to fame and fortune rather than the drudgery part, just as most people are more interested in seeing the gold, silver, and bronze medals awarded to Olympians than to watch athletes’ practice sessions.

Expect that you can become a successful writer, but, as the Latin motto on the gates of the Govan Shipyard in Scotland so succinctly states,  Non sine labore , not without effort.      

Carl Jung’s “The Undiscovered Self”

In the winter of 1913, noted Psychologist Carl Jung embarked on a process of self-experimentation. He deliberately gave free rein to his fantasy thinking and carefully noted what ensued. He later called this process “Active imagination.” He wrote down these fantasies in the Black Books. These are not personal diaries, but rather the records of a self-experimentation.

When World War I broke out, Jung considered that a number of his fantasies were precognitions of this event. This led him to compose the first draft of Liber Novus, which consisted of a transcription of the main fantasies from the Black Books, together with a layer of interpretive commentaries and lyrical elaboration. Here Jung attempted to derive general psychological principles from the fantasies, as well as to understand to what extent the events portrayed in the fantasies presented, in a symbolic form, developments that were to occur in the world.

In the aftermath of World War II, with the advent of the Cold War, the erection of the Berlin Wall, and the explosion of the hydrogen bomb, Jung found himself once again confronted with “An apocalyptic age filled with images of universal destruction,” as he had been when he composed Liber Novus during World War I. Articulating there a direct linkage between what took place in the individual and in society at large, he argued that the only solution to the seemingly catastrophic developments in the world lay in the individual turning within and resolving the individual aspects of the collective conflict:

” [T] he spirit of the depths wants this struggle [the War] to be understood as a conflict in every man’s own nature.”3 In his personal confrontation, Jung’s endeavor was one of resolving the conflicts that were reflected on the world stage within himself. In 1917, he wrote, This war has pitilessly revealed to civilized man that he is still a barbarian. . .. But the psychology of the individual corresponds to the psychology of the nation. What the nation does is done also by each individual, and so long as the individual does it, the nation also does it. Only the change in the attitude of the individual is the beginning of the change in the psychology of the nation.”

Most people confuse “self-knowledge” with knowledge of their conscious ego-personalities. Anyone who has any ego-consciousness at all takes it for granted that he knows himself. But the ego knows only its own contents, not the unconscious and its contents.

People measure their self-knowledge by what the average person in their social environment knows of himself, but not by the real psychic facts which are for the most part hidden from them. In this respect the psyche behaves like the body, of whose physiological and anatomical structure the average person knows very little too. Although he lives in it and with it, most of it is totally unknown to the layman, and special scientific knowledge is needed to acquaint consciousness with what is known of the body, not to speak of all that is not known, which also exists.

What is commonly called “self-knowledge” is therefore a very limited knowledge, most of it dependent on social factors, of what goes on in the human psyche. Hence one is always coming up against the prejudice that such and such a thing does not happen “with us” or “in our family” or among our friends and acquaintances. On the other hand, one meets with equally illusory assumptions about the alleged presence of qualities which merely serve to cover up the true facts .

Carl Jung’s concepts are definitely not everyone’s cup of coffee but understanding them is definitely something that I am giving a try.

Dealing with Impatience and Uncertainty as a writer- Anewya

Yes the dream work may or may not be a bed of roses

Whatever your art form or area of expertise, you’ll have to live with this uncertainty if you ever want to get your creation out there in the world. But how do I deal with how my art is perceived?

 I am speaking on Writing(every day) here which is (not)surprisingly more difficult than I thought it would be. One nearly certain way to give up on a writing session is to allow thoughts such as, “What right do I have to speak?” or “Why am I wasting my time? I’ll never get published!” to creep in. Authors need to banish “the psychological carnivores that prey upon confidence” and have “Faith in our subject matter, faith that needed language resides in us, faith that our meaning-making through writing is worthwhile” (Romano, 2 000,  p. 30, p. 20). Successful authors have learned to stay in the moment rather than dwelling on the other things ( from as severe as a blooming pandemic to as cute as the cat wanting your attention) they might be doing instead.

Convince yourself that writing is what you are doing now and commit yourself to doing only those tasks that will support the writing effort. When the composing process is stalled or unproductive, switch to a different task. Go back and search the literature or check references, for example, rather than stare at a blinking cursor waiting for inspiration. Many people mistakenly assume that “real” writers need only write down the brilliant, perfectly worded sentences that spring to mind. However, one reason that writing is categorized as a process and a craft is that writers write (and revise) ideas into being. 

Another way of subduing impatience is to decode your optimal work habits. Relegate tasks with fewer cognitive demands (for example, answering routine student questions about assignments) to less-than-peak mental performance times and reserve writing for times when your brain feels “fresh”. Instead of setting unrealistic goals (e.g., “I’m going to write a publishable article this weekend”), set very modest objectives (e.g., “I’m going to take some notes on what I’ve read and categorize them”, “I think I’ll reread and experiment with a different organizational structure today.” or “I’m going to play around with article titles because I have to be at this boring meeting.”) 

    Cope with Time Constraints

 After I was encouraged to submit a proposal for a book on controversial issues in HR for practitioners, I contacted doctoral candidates and recent program alumni to contribute chapters. Publication was just about guaranteed and all of students and former students delivered the chapters on time and in good shape, even though all of them were busy professionals with full-time jobs. This example illustrates that time is not the issue. Every human being on the planet, no matter how accomplished, has the same 24 hour day to work with; the difference is in how that time is allocated. Consider a study of faculty in the fi eld of dentistry; the number one reason that unpublished faculty gave for failing to write was lack of time (Srinivasan, Poorni, Sujatha, & Kumar,  2014 ).

Yet if time is the only variable, are we then to assume that those who publish aren’t as busy as those unpublished?

International Yoga Day 2020

“Yoga is the perfect opportunity to be curious about who you are”Jason Crandell

“True yoga is not about the shape of your body, but the shape of your life. Yoga is not to be performed; yoga is to be lived. Yoga doesn’t care about what you have been; yoga cares about the person you are becoming. Yoga is designed for a vast and profound purpose, and for it to be truly called yoga, its essence must be embodied.” Aadil Palkhivala, Fire of Love