Monthly Archives: April 2010

My Recent Jakarta Trip

It has been more than 1 week since I've updated my blog.

A lot of things that I want to share. But today, let me just first start by sharing with you about my recent trip back to Jakarta.


I went back to Indonesia to conduct training to one of the biggest property developer in Indonesia. It was actually held at 'Puncak'. It is about 2.5 hours drive from Jakarta




puncak 2



puncak 3


puncak 4



One thing that I love about Jakarta is definitely the FOOD ! Normally when I went back to my hometown, Jakarta, I surely gain at least 1 or 2 kg. I simply can't resist the temptation of eating so many nice and delicious Indonesian Food. Here's some of them


food 1


food 2


Food 3


If anyone of you intend to go to Jakarta. I recommend you to go and visit. It's actually a nearby small restaurant near my place, but it is very niceeee !!! :)


See you in my next post !

The Rule of 10,000 hours

Many people asked me, what are some traits that a person must have in order for them to achieve their success. Normally during interview I share with them 3 most important traits (at least these are the 3 most important things that I looked for in a candidates before they can work together with me in my organization)

1. Hardworking
2. Discipline
3. Teachable


Today I want to talk more about the first one, i.e. Hardworking.

I’m a person who have a strong believe that there are no short cut to success. If you want to be successful, you need to be prepared not only to work hard, but to work really really hard. 


"There is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs !"





Recently I came to know about the rule of 10,000 hours.
In his new book, Malcolm Gladwell, said that “The best way to achieve international stardom is to spend 10,000 hours honing your skills” 


The greatest athletes, entrepreneurs, musicians and scientists emerge only after spending at least three hours a day for a decade mastering their chosen field. Ability, according to Gladwell, is just one factor in success. Work ethic, luck, a strong support base and even being born in the right year play a far larger role.


Just as the Beatles rose to fame with the explosion of pop culture in the 1960s, so Bill Gates’s fascination with the ASR-33 Teletype that he used at school in 1968 placed a shy boy on track to become one of the world’s richest men.


“No one – not rock stars, not professional athletes, not software billionaires and not even geniuses – ever makes it alone,” writes Gladwell in Outliers: The Story of Success. His new book argues that there is no such thing as a “self-made man”. Instead, the years spent intensively focused on their area of expertise place the world’s most successful people above their peers.


What’s really interesting about this 10,000-hour rule is that it applies virtually everywhere. You can’t become a chess grand master unless you spend 10,000 hours on practice. The tennis prodigy who starts playing at six is playing in Wimbledon at 16 or 17  like Boris Becker. The classical musician who starts playing the violin at four is debuting at Carnegie Hall at 15 or so.


The obsessive approach is particularly evident in sporting icons. Jonny Wilkinson, the rugby player, Tiger Woods, the golfer, and the Williams sisters in tennis have all trained relentlessly since they were children. Much of Britain’s Olympic success is down to a combination of natural ability and sheer dedication. Victoria Pendleton’s emphatic gold in the women’s sprint cycling in Beijing came only after humiliating defeat in Athens four years ago. After training for four hours a day, six days a week the 27-year-old finally reaped the rewards. Rebecca Adlington, the 19-year-old swimmer who won two gold medals at the Beijing Games, has put in an estimated 8,840 hours of training since the age of 12. Bill Furniss, her coach, said: “When I first saw her, what stood out was the fact that she was so willing to take the pain and make sacrifices.”


Such dedication is also apparent in musicians. Maxim Vengerov, 34, is one of the world’s greatest violinists. He was born in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk and, after being given a miniature fiddle at the age of four, displayed outstanding aptitude.
His talent was matched by an immense work ethic. He practised seven hours a day, giving his first recital at the age of five and winning his first international prize at 15. Vengerov said: “My mother would get home at 8pm, cook dinner and then teach me the violin until four in the morning. As a four-year-old boy it was torture. But I became a violinist within two years.”



My 10,000 Hours

So when I first knew about this rule from Elim Chew, one very successful Entrepreneur, the first thing that I did was to do amental calculation. When I first started my career in sales, many people have doubt in me whether I will make it, because I have no sales skills or even communication skills at all. But I was willing to work very hard. My investment at that time was my time and energy. So if I calculated the amount of work that I did, literally talking to people non-stop 14 hours a day, 7 days a week for a period of 1.5 years. I’ve actually clocked a total of 7,665 hrs.  And true enough, by doing so, I became expert in my field, and that year I’ve broken industry record and featured in Straits Times.


I have proven that the 10,000 hour rules really applies.


So, I’ve done mine, and in fact I’m still doing it for many different aspects in my life right now.
What about you? Have you clocked in your 10,000 hours?



Learning Lessons from the game that I played 9 years ago

When I posted my previous blog entry @ MyPaper blog about How I first met Adam Khoo, the next day I received this comment from one very special person




Reading those comments really bring back old memories of when I was still in University. And it amazed me to realised that I was really a hardworking person.



I remembered participating in the Cashflow competition. It was back in year 2001. Eventhough it was just a simple competition, but I really took it very seriously. The competition was actually meant for the Business and Finance students. But eventhough I studied Engineering and I knew nothing about Financial stuff, I still thought that I have an equal chance of winning if I just put my time and effort to focus and learn it, and that's why I signed up.


So that was exactly what I did. I did a lot of research, getting as much information as I could just to make sure that I could have the chance to win the competition. And that has helped me to pass the SemiFinal Round. I was so excited ! While preparing for the Final, I thought that I should change my strategy. I thought I couldn't just do the normal thing that I did previously (read forum, learn from other people, etc) but I must also practice and get familiar with the real game as much as possible.  So Alva (my boyfriend then, who is currently my husband) and I looked around for  people who have the boardgame and see whether we can practice together. At that time, not many people owned it (because it was still new, and it also cost like $300), but we managed to find one person who has it: Donna. Unfortunately, Donna stayed very far from NTU. She stayed at Bukit Timah area. Eventhough the travelling time took us 3hrs plus, we did it anyway. So after school, we travelled to her place and practice there until late at night.

(Thank you Donna! for your generousity in helping us at that time) :) 




You might be thinking "Wow! so much effort put just for a simple school competition?"

Yes we did ! But that whole journey really taught me many important lessons. Yes, our group won the 1st prize during the competition, but that's really not the most important thing. I've learned that whatever we want to achieve, as long as we believe, committed and focus, we can achieve it. There are so many resources that we can always tap into, but first we must be humble enough to be willing to learn and go all the way out. We must be willing to put in the effort and the hardwork. And that winning moment, again re-affirm my belief that success is achievable.


 It might just be a simple game, but how I react and view it is the same thing on how I live in the real life. Every single opportunity (whether it is big or small) that I have at that time was something that I really treasured and gave the best I could.  And interestingly that simple concept has brought me to be where I am right now.

Bryan De Silva in Merry Riana Show (part 1/4)

When Merry Riana met Adam Khoo

In the beginning of this year, I knew that 2010 is gonna be a breakthrough year for me. True enough, so far, the past 3.5 months have been really awesome. Never ending opportunities and blessings keep on coming my way.


The MyPaper Executive Look 2010 event has just ended, but there are so many other events that are lined up for me. Below
is another one that I'm definitely looking forward to.


I was actually very grateful and honored when my good friend, Adam Khoo, invited me to be one of the main speaker for his MEGA Event – Wealth Academy Expo, this coming 22 – 23 May 2010. Definitely very happy because he is one person that I look up to.



The first time I got to know about Adam was 9 years ago. I was on the MRT when I saw this article that captured my interest.


millionaireat26-adam khoo


Wow! He looked like just an ordinary guy, and he was so young, and yet he made his millions at the age of 26? I was very curious. I then read thru that he was doing training, and paid $1,000 per hour. At that year I was actually in the midst of doing my industrial attachment, and I was paid $750/mth (which is already considered above average, because my other friends normally only get around $500-$600) and I told myself “This guys get more in just 1 hour compare to what I get in 1 month?”


So when I knew that a few months later he was going to come to NTU to give a talk, I was so excited. I sit at the first row together with a few friends of mine, including my husband (at that time we were still dating). And throughout that 45 minutes when Adam shared his experiences, I just couldn’t take my eyes of him. Hahahaha..  I’m not sure whether at that time he noticed that there was this ‘fat’ foreigner girl (I was quite overweight back then) who was literally ‘staring’ at him. (Adam, if you are currently reading this, you might be laughing right now, but it is a true story!)


After that event, it again re-affirmed my belief that success belongs to everyone, regardless of age, nationality, race, and gender. If he can do it, why can’t I?


True enough, 5 years after that, I’ve achieved my 1st million too, just like him. And what is so amazing is at that same year, in 2006, he called and asked me whether I’m willing to be interviewed by him for his audio program. (He has this audio program where he interviewed the best person from many different fields, so for sales, he chose me).  Of course I said YES ! :)  And that’s the beginning of many other collaborations that we did together. AMAZING, right? (I think that ‘staring’ moment a few years back really worked – Law of attraction) hahaha…


That’s why I am really looking forward to be able to share the same platform with him during his Wealth Academy Expo event. I believe it’s gonna be AWESOME ! And if you are coming, you can do as what I did to Adam many years back. You can ‘stare’ at me and Adam too… who knows few years down the road you might be able to share your story, just like I am right now :)


Here’s the details about the event.


 wealth expo 2010


You can also read this blogpost that was written by Adam:

When I was aged 13+, I had the good fortune to learn two powerful lessons from a group of mentors that would forever change my life and contribute to the immense wealth and success that I enjoy today.


Lesson 1: Success Does Not Happen By Chance…But By Choice


The first lesson I learnt was that success does NOT happen by chance (unless you are one of the lucky few who are born rich). If you continue to live your life one day at a time, doing what everyone does, doing things the way you have always done them, DON’T EXPECT to wake up 5-10 years from now and find yourself highly successful and wealthy.


If you want to be rich and successful anytime in the future, you have to make that choice and commitment RIGHT NOW. Once you decide to be rich and successful, you will tend to make very different choices in your life. You will start to think differently and behave differently. For example, you will start to open your mind to learn new things (e.g. investing, financial planning, business).


You will start to take different actions. Instead of watching TV the whole night, you will start to surf financial websites and read about stock investments. Instead of reading FHM magazine and the sports section of the newspaper, you will start to Fortune Magazine and The Money Section. You will start to discuss different topics and hang around different kids of people. Instead of gossiping and chit chatting about trivia, you will start to talk about business ideas, economics, business ideas etc..


Instead of just doing your minimum at work, you will start to take initiative and do alot more than expected. What will all this do? It will start to move you towards wealth and success and it will only be a matter of time before you begin to see your life change positively. You will start to become more confident, more motivated. You will start to get promoted faster, see your business profits increase and your wealth multiply.


Lesson 2: Success Can Be Learnt.


The second lesson I learnt is that Success is a learnable topic. You CAN learn how to be successful. The best place to learn how to be successful in any given area is to study and model those who have already achieved the goal that you want. By learning from those who have already found the way, you greatly cut short your learning curve and accelerate your results much faster than the average person.


The reason I have been so successful at making money, business, leadership, making friends, relationships, public speaking etc… is because I have constantly sought out and learnt from gurus such as Anthony Robbins, Dale Carnegie, Brad Sugars, Warren Buffett, Donald Trump, Jay Abraham, Michael Gerber etc…


Do you realize what all the experts I learnt from had in common? They were all foreigners to a Singaporean Chinese like me. The challenge was that at the time, they were no Asian experts I could model and learn from. So, as much as the lessons these experts could teach me was powerful, I had to constantly find ways to adapt what they taught to the Asian environment. For example, I had to adapt Warren Buffett’s investing strategies to the Singapore stock market, which doesn’t work quite the same way as the US market. I spent years finding ways to adapt Jay Abraham and Michael Gerbers great business strategies to the Asian business landscape, which is again so different.


If you are a local Singaporean or an Asian (Malaysian, Indonesian, Thai, Vietnamese etc…) for that matter, then I have great news for you. You have a once in lifetime education opportunity that I never had in the past. You have the opportunity to meet and learn from a group of Asian self-made millionaires in a two-day Wealth Expo to be held in Singapore from 22 to the 23 of May 2010. I have managed to get all these inspiring role models to come down and share their knowledge and experiences because they are all close friends of mine. Some of them, I have known for over 10 years!


What makes it exciting is that they have all created tremendous wealth and success starting from nothing. and they have done it in very different ways. Some of them made their fortune in the sales industry while another made his fortune trading in the Forex markets. Some of them have achieved their success at a very young age (before 30), while some having become millionaires after the age of 40. Some of them have first class honours degrees from top universities while others dropped out of secondary school.


Collectively, they prove that ANYONE can achieve tremendous wealth and success, provided they follow the two powerful principles I talked about. #1: Decide and make the commitment that you want to be successful. #2. Be willing to learn and model the success strategies of those of have already succeeded. Of course, there is the third ingredient, which is to take MASSIVE and CONSISTENT ACTION. After all, there can be no sustainable results without hard work.


Let me introduce just a few of my friends who will be at the Singapore Wealth Expo to you…



Merry Riana


I first met Merry 9 years ago when I gave a talk at the Nanyang Technological University Singapore. She was a 19-year old student engineering undergraduate at the time. Merry’s background and rise to success is truly inspiring. Merry was born to a humble family in Jakarta, Indonesia. During the racial riots of 1998, Merry’s parents feared for her safety and sent her to Singapore to continue her studies.


She studied hard and managed to qualify for a $40,000 study loan to the local university. Besides her study loan, she had hardly enough money for personal expenses. She had less than $10 a week to get by on. She skipped meals, ate instant noodles and wouldn’t even think of shopping or watching movies like her peers. Driven by a strong desire to give a better life to herself and her family, she joined the insurance sales industry upon graduation.


She said that when she heard me speak at her university, she became really inspired to become a self made millionaire herself. She was thinking, ‘if Adam can do it, why not I?’ So she studied NLP and modeled some of the most successful sales people in the industry. Her results were astounding. Despite having no family in Singapore, hardly any friends outside of university and a weak command of English at the time, she closed over $500,000 in sales in the first year and was awarded ‘Top New Advisor’ award by Prudential. She earned over $250,000 in income in that first year and paid off her study loans.



Strait Times horizontal



By the age of 26, she was featured in the Sunday Times for Making her First Million at Age 26! Since then, she has started her own company and is now a successful entrepreneur of a multi-million dollar financial services company (Merry Riana Organization). Come and learn how you too can overcome tremendous odds and build your fortune in sales and business.


You can read more about her at 


To read more about the event, visit:

The Grand Final of MyPaper Executive Look 2010

This is like a flashback
This is like a dream
This is like all the things you can fit inside a memory

 (Flashback – CALVIN HARRIS)

That song kept playing in my head like 20-30 times today :)
Ever since I managed to find that song on yourtube yesterday I can’t get it out of my head. I just simply LOVE the song.
(it was actually the theme song of our MyPaper Executive Look 2010 catwalk)

And indeed it is really like a flashback. Everything that just happened recently is really like a dream.

So here it is, capturing the moments of MyPaper Executive Look 2010 Grand Finals at VivoCity last Friday, 730pm.

Final 1

Final 2

Final 3

Final 4

Final 5

Final 6

Final 7

Final 8

Final 9

Final 10

My deepest gratitude to all my friends who have supported me ever since day one. Faithfully voting for me everyday, and coming down to the Grand Final to cheer for me.

There were actually more than 30 of my family members, friends, colleagues,  ex-colleagues, facebook-friends, networks, seminar participants,and many others who came down to support. Even my fellow friend from FEMALE 50 GORGEOUS PEOPLE 2009 also came down for me. THANK YOU ALL :)  

All of your efforts and thousands of votes have made us won the Readers’ Choice Award 2010.

I thank God for making this a reality for me. And I thank God for bringing all of you into my life.

The Merry Riana Show – featuring Bryan De Silva (Razor TV)

I’m sure many of you have watched the Razor TV interview of the MyPaper Executive Look 2010 Contestants. It was very nicely done.


Well, I actually got a little surprise for you… What I’m about to show you is actually a video of me interviewing one of the Razor TV presenter, Bryan De Silva ! :)  Isn’t this cool??  :)


I called it “The Merry Riana Show”.  This is actually a small project that I started last year.




One of the reasons why I’m where I am today is because I have the attitude of always wanting to learn more. I learn from books, seminars, school of hard-knocks, and many more. Most of all, I am grateful to have the privilege of being able to learn from many successful people that I know. 


So last year, I had this crazy idea, I've decided to interview successful and inspirational people that I know from various walk of lives to share their experiences, so that you will benefit too.


So far I’m very honored to have conducted Audio Interviews with prominent people like

- Adam Khoo (Singapore's No. 1 Motivational Speaker)
- Elim Chew (Founder of fashion retail shop '77th Street')
- Irene Ang (Actress, playing as Rosie in 'PCK Pte Ltd')
- Aaron Tan (Movie Director, of the TV series 'R.E.M.')
- Jasmine Tye (Singapore Idol, Top 3 Finalists)
- Sylvester Sim (Singapore Idol, Top 2 Finalists)

And many more…


So I really hope you all will benefit from my interview with Bryan De Silva  :)


There are a total of 4 parts of the video.. but for today, I’ll just only upload the last part. Will definitely write more about it and also post the rest of the segment in my later post.


So, sit back, relax, and ENJOY !  :)
(just click on the photo below)


The Merry Riana Show - Bryan De Silva

My Life Purpose

First of all, I just want to wish HAPPY EASTER to those of you who celebrate.


Today, I thought of just writing a little message about what I felt today, in this special Easter day.
Early this morning, I received message from one of my facebook friends. He wrote this quote to me

"The joyful news that He is risen does not change the contemporary world. Still before us lie work, discipline, sacrifice. But the fact of Easter gives us the spiritual power to do the work, accept the discipline, and make the sacrifice."


Which I think is very true. At least in my personal capacity, there is always spiritual power that motivates me and gives me a reason to keep doing what I’m doing despite the many obstacles and challenges that I’m facing.


When I went to Easter Service today, my pastor shared this very interesting story
This story is about an athlete named Eric Liddell, a great missionary and Olympic champion. A lot of people admire this man because he was an incredible athlete, and because of the way he held so strongly to what he believed to be right.


eric liddell

“When I run, I feel God’s presence,” are the words of the young athlete called Eric Liddell.
Eric was born in China to missionary parents on January 16, 1942. In his early childhood years, the Liddell family moved from China to Scotland, and then later to London, England. Eric’s outstanding skills for running began when he was still in his teens. At sixteen, his time of 10.2 seconds broke his school record for the 100-yard race. Although running was his favorite of all sports, he also enjoyed being the captain of his school’s rugby and cricket teams. Even though he always beat everyone else in sports, the praise never went to his head. This young man always remained humble, and never became overly proud. He knew that his accomplishments were the result of a lot of hard work. When he was twenty-two, he tried out for the Olympics and made it onto the British team.


One of the reasons why Eric Liddell is an extraordinary hero is because he refused to run on a Sunday. When he heard that the first Olympic 100 meter race was to be held on this day, he boldly said, “I’m not running.” He believed that this day was special, and he never had run on a Sunday before. So instead of being on the track that Sunday with all of the other racers, Eric was at church. His country called him a traitor, and it seemed like the world had turned its back on him, but Eric held onto his beliefs; even to the point when the Prince of Wales begged him to change his mind! Eric’s resolution not to run was so strong that he turned down the Prince’s pleadings, as well as his country’s.

Although it seemed that Eric had let Britain down, he showed what he could do in the next competition. In the 400 meter race, Eric beat the runner-up by an amazing fifteen meters! He won the Olympic gold and the world record for the race. Later, although he was now a famous celebrity, Eric decided to return to his family who had moved back to China. There he became a missionary to the Chinese people.


This man was a hero because he was not afraid to stand up for what he believed was right. Eric also showed perseverance in always trying to do his best till the very end. I think that these are some of the characteristics that make a person a true hero.


The message that I want to share with all of you today is this: I know many times I keep emphasizing that for anyone to succeed, they need to find a strong WHY. They need to have a strong reason on why they want to achieve what they want to achieve. And I believe I find out the strongest reason when I know my life purpose. The moment I knew what is the main reason I’m being put here on earth, I never lost my motivation ever again.


“The purpose of my life is to be significant as God’s living miracle, enjoying every moment and pieces of my miraculous life with my loved ones and testifying my blessed life story to the world as a gift of love for myself and others.”

     – Merry Riana –


How did I get my hair REDKEN-ize :)

Today I came to office, and the first thing that people noticed about me was my hair :)

yeah.. on Sunday, I went to KENARIS to get my hair 'REDKEN-ize'

kenaris wheelock


Thanks to MyPaper, Kenaris and also Redken who have sponsored us to go for a treatment to prepare us for MyPaper Executive Look Finals this Friday :)


redken kenaris




I reached there at 12.30pm and left at 4pm.
If you are wondering what did they do to my hair? Well.. continue reading my blogpost.



hair 1




Just a little bit of information. Kenaris is actually owned by 2 person, Ken & Aris  :) I got a privilige to meet both of them personally last Sunday, and I was so happy that Ken is the one who was going to 'REDKEN-ize' my hair. Being an Entrepreneur myself, I'm always curious to find out how do other entrepreneus started their business. So during my hair treatment, I actually had a little chat with Ken. He shared with me that he started in this industry since he was 19 years old. (that was 29 years ago. WOW !  And he opened KENARIS together with Aris in year 2002. And so far most of the business come from satisfied – regular customers and their referral.



hair 2



hair 3



hair 4



hair 5



hair 6



hair 9



Hair 10


Thank you Ken, Thank you MyPaper, Thank you Redken and Thank you Kenaris !

I'm now ready to go for the Finals and shine :) hahaha.. see you all there this Friday :)

Singapore needs more women to step up

Yesterday I was so excited to know that I would meet Minister Mrs. Lim Hwee Hua at the forum on Women's Leadership Role in the New World.  Indeed it was really my pleasure to be one of the panelists, sharing my experiences and my views on this topic.

The event was actually featured in the news (and I’m so happy that they mentioned my name).








The panel also discussed challenges that women face in the business world and what could be done to address them.


Minister Mrs. Lim Hwee Hua said that in today society, both men and women have equal chance to get education, information and opportunity to excel. I totally agree with that since I am the real life example of a person who has benefited from it. During the forum I also shared my experiences of being a Woman Entrepreneur. And I think being a woman has its own advantages



1. Women can multi-task

We can juggle many tasks at the same time and still produce excellent results. We can talk on the phone, open and read our email at the same time.


2. Women have good inter-personal skills.

We can connect with people more easily. We are good in networking and creating support group. This will eventually help the business.


3. Women are good in branding and marketing themselves

We are natural marketers. When we are so passionate and enthusiastic about a certain thing or what we do, we just do not stop talking about it.



Having said that of course there are still challenges that women face. Mrs. Lim said that one of the biggest challenges that women have today is still the ability to juggle between career and family. She also advised that no matter how busy we are, women should always set aside a time for themselves too. It is important, because if you don’t have a sense of fulfillment in your life, you won’t be able to bring out your best, and therefore it will affect all other aspects of your life, i.e. family, work, etc.


That is indeed very true.  And I’m very blessed also to be able to have that in my life.


Here are some photos of  the event:


women forum


With 2 other panelists, Genecia Luo and Sophia Pang


power women



Also, I got a chance to present my book to Minister Mrs. Lim Hwee Hua.


token of appreciation



And lastly, photo with the organizer, Kenny :)


with kenny



In the midst of writing this blog, I happen to noticed that CNA did a coverage on this event. So I quickly took my camera, and recorded it. Here's the link for you to watch (click on the picture).


cna merry