My 2013 in Review, and Happy New Year 2014 to You!! :)

My 2013 in Review

It’s now the last day of the year again!! It’s now my fifth year running PE and as with previous years, I’ll be doing a review of how my 2013 went, as well as my goals for the new year.

If you don’t do year-end reviews, here’s why you should: Why I Do Year End Reviews (And 6 Important Questions To Ask Yourself in Your Review).

My End-of-Year Reviews from 2008–2012

2013 in a Snapshot

2o13 felt like one of the longest years of my life. Probably because it is in this year when I met my soulmate, got attached to him, got engaged, and went through light-years of transformation in terms of my consciousness development.

(Here’s the series that details how we met and got together if you haven’t read yet: How I Found My Soulmate in Life (seven-part series).)

Meeting him and being with him is the best thing I could have ever wished for. Thank you universe for putting us in each other’s path. :)

There were also many other things that happened this year which I’m proud of:

  1. Being featured on Soul Sistersa local documentary on inspiring women! My episode aired yesterday, on Toggle Eve channel. In case you didn’t catch it, I’m going to see if I can upload a copy to YouTube soon.
  2. Being chosen as international personal-care brand Dove as their personal-development expert in their Camera Confidence Campaign. Thank you Dove for the opportunity to touch more lives! :)
  3. More traveling: traveled to South Africa (JohannesburgCape Town), Scotland, India (Chennai), and Hong Kong, of which the first three countries are new territories for me!
  4. Conducted more PE readers meetups: Hong Kong (26 Jan),  Johannesburg (Apr 11)Cape Town (Apr 21)Singapore (Jun 23), and Edinburgh (Aug 17). It is always such a lovely and exciting experience meeting all of you; thank you so much for taking the time to come to the meetup and sharing your wisdom with everyone! :)
  5. Launched four new products to my products lineup: The Passive Income System, Blogging Success Program, Anti-Procrastination Course, and Self-Esteem Webinar.
  6. Set up Celes.TV and built it with a selection of video interviews and video tutorials. At this point of writing, I’ve over 1,256 subscribers, 45 videos, and a total video view count of 70,000 views (the most popular being the vision board video with over 8,000 views), though I hope to build this further in 2014!
  7. Being on a healthier diet and more regular exercising regime. I’ve been eating home-made salads and sandwiches more regularly than before and Ken and I’ve been exercising at least two-to-three times a week. I hope to continue this habit in 2014!
  8. Having 14 new media mentions/features, such as in Her World, Kiss92 FM, Singapore Women’s Weekly and Cosmopolitan Singapore. Thank you to all media outlets for the coverage and opportunity to contribute! :)

    Update: Just got a call from Channel News Asia to be on their show on January 6 (next Monday), to talk about new year’s resolutions for the new year. What a great way to usher in the new year! :)

Reviewing Against My 2013 Goals

As a form of accountability, I’ve pasted my 2013 goals which I wrote in my 2012 review, along with my comments in blue:

  1. Start my online video channel to help others grow and live their best lives. — Done! :) Have set up Celes.TV
  2. Continue to expand PE.
    1. Convert past courses (passive income course, blogging bootcamp) into product versions as part of expanding my passive income streams. – Done! :) Launched four products this year, based on live PE courses. 
    2. Seriously explore collaborations with large-scale platforms. IMO, this will be necessary to bring PE to the next level. – Working with Dove is my first step towards collaborating with a mainstream brand, and I’m very grateful for that. I’m also working with Lifehack.org, a major personal development portal, to write a new book to be out next year. I hope to secure more of such opportunities in 2014!
    3. Develop PE as a business, and not as a self-employed person. – I’ve been handling PE as a business, though I can do a lot more in this area! I still micro-task a lot and I need to adopting a more big-picture approach.
    4. Achieve at least six-figure income (annual) for myself and my business in 2013.  – Ack, unfortunately this is a miss. While my income is higher than last year’s and I’m earning more than my previous corporate career, it’s definitely not at the six-figure level yet. Money is not a priority in my life (which is why I barely pay attention to it in my business development) but I do see the amount I’m earning as the representation of the value I’m giving. Not to mention that money is an important tool to live a better-quality life. 
  3. Continue traveling—this time to South America, India, and South Africa, which are places I’ve never been to before. – A check for South Africa and India. I would have visited South America (my plan was to visit in July 2013) except that I met Ken and my life plans changed after that! I’ll most definitely want to visit South America in time to come!
  4. Live life as myself, in line with my vision, values, passion, and purpose. – Yes, without a doubt!

My Goals for 2014

Here are my goals for 2014:

  1. Have an amazing wedding (and honeymoon) with my husband-to-be, Ken Soh! :) Our wedding is on May 25 (less than five months to go!), 80% of our guests have been invited and confirmed, and soon I’ll be busy with the second phase of wedding preparations (selecting the flowers, doing up our wedding album, picking out my gown, etc.).
  2. Build PE’s traffic. I haven’t been as focused in this as I was when I started the blog, and I feel it’s time to go back to the roots and basics. It’s opportune that I’m now conducting a new run of the Blogging Success Program because it is giving me the chance to reflect on my own blog development plans. I hope to do this through:
    1. Outreach efforts to get new visitors, be it through my content or marketing.
    2. Better visitor-retention efforts. I need to re-look into my blog architecture as I work on this.
  3. Secure more collaborations with large-scale platforms.
  4. Build up Celes.TV. This means more great interviews and video tutorials coming your way, so stay tuned!
  5. Increase my annual income relative to 2013. I won’t be working on this goal directly; rather, I see this goal as a natural result of achieving #2 and perhaps #3 and #4.

I also hope that Ken and I will get our own home in 2014. We bade for a balance flat in November of which the results will be out next month (January), so let’s see! Even if we don’t get a flat from the bidding exercise, we’ll be looking at resale flats thereafter. When there’s a will, there’s a way!

Happy New Year 2014!!

How has your 2013 been? What are your 2014 goals moving forward? Share them in the comments section!

Hope all of you have an amazing new year’s celebration and let’s rock the new year ahead! :D Look forward to an exciting year with all of you!


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  • Madalina Sraier

    In 2013 I tried to go out of my comfort zone by building a list of First Time’s. I cut my hair short, went to a sushi restaurant, became the vicepresident of the NGO that I’m part of, got my first job, bought a laptop with my own money, and other smaller things.

    In 2014 I want to start writing and maybe try out self-publishing. I also want to focus on achieving a healthier life, not only physically, but spiritually/mentally as well. I know I can do more if I just work harder. I’m already thinking of ways in which I could get my own place, not live with rent, but actually buy a small apartment of my own. Of course, at the moment this is only a huge dream given that I don’t have any resources or an extremely well-payed job, but hey, who knows what the future may bring?

  • http://hackmyheart.com/ Calae

    My 2013 has been what I’d grade as a “B”. I actually just went ahead and answered the questions you pose in your year-end reviews, but I’ll probably take another look at it later as I’m sure I’ll have some goals I want to add. =)

    This year I managed to get and perform well at an internship, so I’m excited for the experience and the fact I’ll have another recommendation up my sleeve. I am also now going out with who I consider my best friend, Z, and I consider that an achievement even if it’s not entirely of my own doing. x) Towards the end of the year, I’ve actually gotten better at maintaining certain habits like meditating and drinking more water, so I’m grateful for that and hope it continues.

    But there’s a few big things I didn’t do, like get over my fear of driving or getting a job. Just typing them out scares me. I know I have to change how I see them, but it may be a difficult process!

    I really hope by the end of this year that I maintain my life-enhancing habits and possibly add to them, get over my fear of driving, and get a job so that I may support myself away from my family.

    • Madalina Sraier

      Having an internship added to your CV is definitely going to prove helpful in the future. I’m glad that you’re in a happy relationship, this is probably one of the most fulfilling things in one’s life :) Wish you all the best in 2014, Calae!

  • http://andrewwargo.com/blog Andrew Wargo IV (360 Minutes)

    Celes (& Ken!), happy new year! Best wishes for the bid on the flat, and for your wedding! May will be here before you know it! My year in review will post on Monday.

    • http://personalexcellence.co/ Celestine Chua

      Thank you so much Andrew!! :D Look forward to reading your year-end review!! :D

  • http://www.starsparklex.blogspot.co.uk/ Moonsparkle

    Happy New Year! I’m looking forward to reading more articles on here and hearing about the wedding. Good luck with the flat! :)

  • 家梅 李

    I might be late a bit, but, I still would like to share my happiness In 2013 :P
    I achieved only 40% of my goals, but I made 24 achievements which were not in my list of goals!!
    - I learned making steamed banana cake, chicken chop, etc.
    - I received an appreciation email from my student, which brightened up my day
    - I have 95% of passing rate for my students’ examination, which only one of them failed in the examination
    - I went for street performance of zither
    - I learned make-up
    - I learned speaking in Japanese language with foreigners through Skype

    … etc.
    And, before the end of 2013, I got a promotion in my career!!
    It was a great year to me~!!

    This year, 2014, these are my goals, in term of my career, health, interests, and the most importantly, my behavior.

    1. I’m currently enrolling a part-time postgraduate course, expected to be completed in year 2015. There are 10 subjects to be completed, and I aim for at least 7 A’s in this whole course. Currently, I have obtained 2 A’s, 5 more to go!
    2. Go for at least one street performance of zither, to gain the experience!
    3. Make a handicraft
    4. Plan for a trip
    5. Reduce my weight for 5kg (It’s not much, I know, but I failed in achieving it last year…)
    6. Fall sick for at most 2 times in a year ( I fell sick for 3 times last year >.< )
    7. Do stretching exercise everyday, for at least 10 ~ 15 minutes (Part of my healthy exercise)
    8. Draw a picture each month
    9. Save RM200 each month as traveling fund ( I made it last year, will continue for this year)
    10. Write 3 book reviews
    11. Write 3 informative blog post
    12. Be gentle while driving.
    13. Put more effort to the students who are really interested to learn
    14. Control my temper, finding a way to cool down myself as soon as possible when my temper raises.

    These are my major list of goals out of 27 goals in total. Generally, they are small goals, and not hard to be achieved. But, still, I didn't get to achieve some of the goals.
    I hope that I can achieve 80% of my goals this year!! ^^

    Jaleen :)

  • kc

    Hi Celes, what is the topic of your new book for lifehack.org? Care to share when will it be out for sale?

    • http://personalexcellence.co/ Celestine Chua

      Hi kc! It’s on productivity and there’s currently no fixed date on its launch date (as the writing is still underway). I’ll definitely be announcing it when it’s out! Thank you for your interest! :D

  • JadePenguin

    “I do see the amount I’m earning as the representation of the value I’m giving”

    But isn’t this completely ignoring the value you’re giving to people who don’t have much money, or simply choose to stick to the free content? Of course it’s hard to measure this… :)

    I like how making money isn’t your main goal and you know it’s going to happen by accomplishing the other goals :D

    • http://personalexcellence.co/ Celestine Chua

      Hey Jade, you are right! This can get into a little bit of an intellectual debate, but I have realized that on the whole, *generally*, it is true that the money is quite a good measure of the value that I’m dispensing or that is at least being received and applied by people.

      Without going into a lengthy explanation, but a simple example would be Person A who receives (and expects to receive) free advice from a credible person vs. Person B who paid to receive the exact advice from the same person. Person B will tend to get more value from this advice and apply to his/her life because he/she has somehow figured the advice will be important enough for him/her to pay money for it, whereas Person A may try to apply that advice on a very generic, weak level, but is unable to extract the highest value from that advice because the person has never figured in him/herself to pay any money for such advice.

      There are definitely exceptions to this of course and I know that many people get a lot of value from free content on the web (myself included), but the above is quite a true trend that I’ve observed in my years of my work. The answer isn’t to start charging for everything I do and to charge high prices (not at all, otherwise things would already be dramatically different at PE) but rather it’s just something for me to be mindful and aware of.

      • JadePenguin

        Ohh no, it’s not that your advice is not important enough for me to pay for it! Sorry if I ever came across this way :) Trust me, I’d gladly send you a donation if your business were to be struggling. But since you’re already so successful, me sending an extra £10 or £20 would not change your life, while say, an activist organisation would find that of much help. Or I can spend my money in a small local ethical shop (which I hear is indeed struggling) instead of buying everything at a supermarket.

        But I agree that if you’ve paid for something, you’re more likely to appreciate it and try to make the most of it. It’s like a commitment you make. And commitments are known to increase chance of action.

  • http://myconstantthought.blogspot.com/ Donetta Sifford

    2013 was a tedious, trying year for me due to mental health issues and medication changes. However, by Christmas, I was feeling better and more optimistic. Here it is February 15th and I actually haven’t set any goals for this year yet. I have in my mind, and tossed around ideas, but nothing official. I gained a lot of weight in 2013. Partly due to medication and mostly to due with lack of trying to stick to the routine I had built when I participated in your 21DHL challenge. I located my Healthy Living Guidebook and am ready to get in shape and be healthier. I was touching base here to review the challenges I have participated in. Personal Excellence has taught me so much.
    Congratulations on everything you’ve accomplished so far!! A Huge Congratulations on your upcoming wedding. I know you must be excited. Looks like you have a lot on your plate and I know you can handle each challenge thrown your way. Maybe after your honeymoon and you fall into some type of routine with work and marriage, you may feel up to hosting another 21 Day Challenge. I did participate in the 14 Days of Gratitude and am thankful I did. Just to throw this out there, I would love a 21 Day Saving Money or Paying Debts challenge. Actually, I am sorting through all the work at home listings online. I’m trying to research every opportunity and make sure it isn’t a scam to waste my time. In the meantime, I’m maintaining my blogs and participating in creative writing challenges. Hope 2014 brings you much love and happiness!! ~Netta~