A journey to remember

Ever since I decided to start my own business, I’ve received numerous unexpected supports from my families, colleagues, and friends.

The ones who repost my ads to their social media without being asked.

The ones who help me to find potential sellers (one of them even told me that she was willing to work with me without being paid!).

The ones who help me to get affordable spending to support my business (I managed to get special price to help me to ignite my start-up!).

The ones who voluntarily pose as the models for my website’s portfolio (they even trust us to handle their prewedding photoshoot!).

The ones who offer me financial supports, from a zero interest loan to capital funding.

And the ones who simply support me to fight my own doubts! This kind of moral support is always heartwarming to me. They keep telling me that I can go far with this business, they share the same excitement with me, they simply believe in me even a lot more than I believe in myself!

I often look back and I wonder, “What did I do so well in the past that made me deserve any of this?”

If you; all the people who help me out, read this, then let me tell you this: you guys are awesome! Even just a simple encouragement actually means a lot to me. Building a start-up is hard, and you guys have really made it feel easier for me to go down this road. It’s going to be harder and harder, but thanks to all of you, I finally believe that someday, it can be sooner or later, I’ll eventually get there (insyaallah and amiin to this!).

There are some moments when I nearly lost my faith in humanity, but then I have this one moment that makes me believe that good people do still exist. Alhamdulillah 🙂


Tomorrow, I’m going to have the first photoshoot for my start-up; thelenstory.com. The photographers will be the first three of my marketplace sellers; we help each other to build a portfolio for our website. It’s going to be an indoor photoshoot for 5 categories at one shot! Pre-wedding, baby & kids, graduation, family, and beauty portraiture.

In the past one week, I’ve been super busy to prepare all the photoshoot details! The concept, wardrobe, rundown, hunting for MUA and all the props I need! The only big spending I did this whole month was only for the props. I bought some clothes, accessories, aprons, I even bought a very big teddy bear! Hunting for this big bear was quite a story.

Initially I was planning to buy from Teddy House but the nearest store was a bit far from my place. I told my friends about that plan and they suggested me to go to Gembrong market instead. They said that the items were pretty much the same but the prices were significantly cheaper. I am actually not a big fan of traditional market; the aisle is narrow, the space is open air (and therefore it’s hot!), and I still have to bargain just to get the best price from the merchants. But well… I don’t have million dollars USD to fund my start-up and a bit of saving here and there would definitely help!

So there I decided to give Gembrong market a try. My friends gave me some tips: bargain as much as you can, go around the market to compare the price, and don’t wear nice and fancy clothes so that they won’t charge you expensive price for your items. That sounded like a plan to me so that I decided to wear just a simple outfit with almost no make-up on my face.

My outfit was just fine, except this one stupid mistake I did: I still kept my heels on. I’m 171 CM with 7 CM heels and it made me have to bow when I walked through the aisle so that I could keep my head safe from the toys hung on the ceilings. The market was also longer that I saw from outside and wearing heels on uneven ground could also be very challenging. My sister laughed seeing my struggle and she said, “I’m amazed that you’re willing to enter that market!”

Well the truth is that I enjoyed my visit to Gembrong market. Apart from all the downsides, they indeed sell varieties of nice toys both for boys and girls. My nephew really loves this market too. There’s only one thing that made me feel disappointed in my first time to Gembrong: the merchants somehow still offered me overrated price.

Back in Gembrong market, I almost bought a bear priced around IDR 500k. It was fluffy and the size was just right. I still wanted to look for a cuter doll so I walked away and left the market empty handed. I entered Basura mall; right next to Gembrong, hoping that maybe I could find something in that mall. And I was right. I found a toy store in Basura and they also sold the exactly same doll I saw in Gembrong. And did you know? The price in that mall was only IDR 300k!

I managed to find a cute doll I wanted in Basura but I was still unhappy with the size. I needed a doll with height more than one meter and the doll I had was around 20 CM shorter. I told myself that I should find a way to either make it work, or to buy another doll online and ask the seller to send it using Gojek (same day delivery).

I already had some plans running on my head.

Maybe I should change the pose so that I can work with this shorter bear.

Maybe I should order from Tokopedia today so that the doll will arrive tomorrow noon.

But then the universe brought me to an even better plan!

On our way home, I asked my brother not to take a freeway hoping that we can find something along the way. And then my sister replied, “If I’m not mistaken, there is this one nice store close to your high school.”

I tried to recall and she was right; there is one store selling dolls in Gamprit area. My sister checked on Google Map and we were only 2 KM away from that store! Initially I doubted I would find something nice in that area, but right when my car arrived on the parking lot, I instantly changed my mind. I could see the exact doll I was looking for displayed by their windows! I walked so fast to that store, and the first question I asked, “How much does that cost?”

Not only one doll, but also I found a couple more of big and cute dolls in that Gamprit store! It took me around 30 minutes until I ended up buying the first doll I pointed out when I arrived. Before I left the store, I told them that I would definitely come back if I needed something else. They have a high quality product and apparently, they are local company who produce their items in Malang factory. As a fellow Indonesian entrepreneur, I’m so proud that we have more and more capable local players in Indonesia!

Running my own business has really made me do the things I never did before. I had to walk out of my comfort zone to do the things that I usually avoid. But apparently, doing the unknown can be a lot of fun! This doll hunting is just one small stories, I still have a few other big stories to tell, but I’ll keep that for next time.

Now I really need to go back to work just to make sure that all are good for tomorrow’s shoot. Wish me luck!

Bulan September tahun ini benar-benar bikin gue ngerasa excited! Bakalan capek, tapi capek dalam artian yang positif!

Ini agenda lengkapnya!

1 September: Idul Adha. Senang meskipun tahun ini keuangan gue sedang sangat ketat, gue bersyukur masih bisa berpartisipasi. Senang juga karena jadi dapat long weekend dan kerja cuma 4 hari aja, hehehehehe.

2 September: The first ever The Lens Story photo session! Tujuannya memang hanya untuk membangun portfolio, tapi gue tetap senang! Peran gue? Director merangkap stylist merangkap model, hehehehe.

5-8 September: Lazada Summit di Bangkok. Kerja kantoran cuma sehari aja! Big yaay! 😀

9-12 September: Bali trip with my friends! Udah kebayang akan banyak foto baru buat dipajang di Instagram gue, hehehehe.

17 September: the second photoshoot for The Lens Story portfolio 😉

21-22 September: Lazada finance team outing trip. Excited karena tahun ini panitianya tim gue sendiri! I just know that we’re gonna rock it!

See? September this year is gonna be awesome!

Awalnya, minggu ini benar-benar minggu yang melelahkan. Ngebut bikin report bulanan karena akan ada business trip 3 hari di Bali, berangkat ke Bali dalam keadaan belum tidur (I was awake for more than 24 hours!), sampai harus menahan kantuk selama workshop berlangsung di Bali.

Awalnya workshop itu terasa membosankan buat gue, tapi lama kelamaan gue mulai enjoy! Ada juga hal-hal menyenangkan lainnya di akhir minggu yang membuat gue puas banget dengan satu minggu yang gue lewati.

Ini daftar lengkapnya!

  1. Ketemu sama teman-teman baru dari ventures lain (Lazada di negara lain). Bangga rasanya saat tahu tim gue di Indonesia sudah dua-tiga langkah lebih maju dibanding tim Finance di negara lainnya!
  2. Workshop break selama dua jam dan kita curi-curi waktu buat spa bareng! Pergi spa bareng tim FP&A dari negara lain sambil cerita banyak soal hobi kita masing-masing. Meskipun hasil mani pedi-nya mengecewakan, gue tetap senang!
  3. Mbak-mbak di spa (tiga orang sekaligus) mengira umur gue masih 21-23 tahun saja doong. It’s so flattering, hehehehe;
  4. The foot massages were so good! Pas banget ngilangin capek dan pegal di kaki gue ini. Sayang pewarnaan kuteksnya benar-benar berantakan;
  5. Kumpul bareng di pinggir kolam renang hotel sambil curhat soal beban pekerjaan masing-masing. Ternyata semua orang dari negara yang berbeda-beda punya “penderitaan” yang sama dengan tim gue. Good to know that I’m not the only one!
  6. Pergi shopping bareng adek gue, beli kelengkapan wardrobe untuk photoshoot The Lens Story yang pertama kalinya!
  7. Rapihin alis lalu mampir ke nail salon buat memperbaiki hasil meni-pedi di Bali yang kacau balau itu. And I really my new nail colors! They’re gonna look stunning in the photoshoot next week!

I have a lot of plans for September and I know it’s going to be a lot of fun! September, bring it on!

Setelah nonton Kung Fu Panda untuk ke sekian kalinya, saya jadi menyadari ada beberapa pelajaran yang bisa kita terapkan dalam dunia kerja, baik itu dari sudut pandang atasan maupun sudut pandang bawahan.

Apa saja?

Sebagai atasan….

  1. Jangan mudah menyerah saat mengembangkan bawahan di kantor. Tidak semua orang mempunyai learning curve yang sama cepatnya. Jika kita sebagai atasan sudah menyerah, mereka sebagai bawahan juga akan menyerah pada dirinya sendiri. Po tidak akan mau meneruskan latihannya jika bukan karena Shifu yang terus berusaha melatih anak didiknya itu!
  2. Believe in your team, even in their darkest times! Pada dasarnya, semua orang memiliki kebutuhan akan rasa dipercaya oleh orang-orang yang mereka anggap penting (dalam dunia kerja, atasan adalah salah satunya). Kepercayaan kita sebagai atasan dapat membantu mereka untuk bangkit dari masa-masa sulit dalam perjalanan karier mereka;
  3. Pelajari motivasi masing-masing orang dan kembangkan mereka dengan cara yang paling sesuai untuk mereka. Tidak ada yang namanya one size fits all dalam dunia kerja. Ingat adegan di mana Shifu melatih Po menggunakan makanan? Motivasi Po adalah makanan, sesuatu yang belum tentu sama penting untuk lima anak didik Shifu yang lainnya;
  4. Jangan membuat bawahan merasa “not good enough”. Ketika seseorang merasa bahwa upaya terbaik mereka tidak pernah cukup baik untuk atasannya, mereka akan lebih memilih untuk pergi dan mencari tempat lain yang membuat mereka merasa masih memiliki peluang untuk level up. Terkadang, bersikap keras dan tegas memang diperlukan, tapi jangan sampai kelewatan. Jika kita masih ingin mempertahankan mereka dalam tim, maka jangan sampai membuat mereka merasa kehilangan masa depan karier-nya bersama kita; dan
  5. Jangan sampai kita bablas membesarkan seorang “monster”. Terkadang, rasa bangga yang berlebihan terhadap bawahan bisa membuat mereka menjadi sombong. Membuat mereka menjadi lupa untuk bersikap rendah hati. Tujuan karier mereka jadi hanya materi dan jabatan semata (sama seperti Tai Lung yang terobsesi mendapatkan Dragon Scroll). Terlalu banyak pujian bisa membuat mereka tidak mau menerima kritik sekalipun kritik itu baik untuk mereka. Ingat selalu satu hal ini: atasan yang gelap mata akan menciptakan bawahan yang juga gelap mata.

Sebagai bawahan…

  1. Jangan takut untuk bermimpi besar. Banyak orang yang terlalu minder terhadap dirinya sendiri. Hanya untuk bermimpi pun mesti pakai embel-embel “harus tahu diri”. Seolah hanya orang besar yang boleh punya mimpi besar! Bermimpilah seperti Po si anak tukang mie yang akhirnya jadi Kung Fu master!
  2. Cari atasan yang bisa kita percaya sebagai role model. Penting untuk kita mendapatkan atasan yang dapat menjadi role model dalam perjalanan karier kita. Saat kita sudah menemukannya, maka kita harus percaya bahwa segala yang dia lakukan adalah untuk kebaikan diri kita, termasuk segala tuntutan dan kritikan yang dia berikan untuk kita! Cara seorang atasan mengembangkan anak buahnya tidak selalu manis dan membahagiakan, ibarat menelan pil pahit yang sebetulnya baik untuk diri kita ini;
  3. Jangan terlalu santai dalam menjalani karier. Orang yang terlihat selalu santai cenderung sulit mendapatkan kepercayaan rekan kerjanya, terutama atasannya. Selalu bercanda dan memasang silly face hanya selalu lucu untuk pergaulan sehari-hari saja. Selalu bertingkat demikian dalam dunia kerja dapat membuat orang lain mempertanyakan komitmen kita sebagai seorang pekerja;
  4. Jangan pernah terlalu lelah, apalagi terlalu malas, untuk terus bekerja keras. Tidak ada kesuksesan yang mudah untuk dicapai, itu sebabnya, atasan akan lebih memilih untuk mengembangkan orang-orang yang mempunyai kesadaran diri untuk bekerja keras dalam membangun karier-nya sendiri; dan
  5. Salah satu pelajaran terbesar yang ingin disampaikan Kung Fu Panda adalah untuk percaya pada diri sendiri. Akan percuma saja atasan punya kepercayaan besar pada diri kita jika kita justru tidak bisa mempercayai diri kita sendiri. Seperti isi movie quote-nya Kung Fu Panda: “To make something special, you only have to believe that is special,” dan “There is no secret ingredient, it’s just you.”

Finally, meskipun saya bilang ada hal-hal yang dapat kita pelajari dari Kung Fu Panda, tetap ada satu hal yang tidak boleh kita percaya dari jalan cerita film kartun ini.

Apa persisnya?

Jangan percaya bahwa kita bisa menjadi “master” dalam suatu hal hanya dalam waktu yang singkat saja. Seringkali, meskipun kita sudah berusaha sangat-sangat keras, tetap dibutuhkan waktu yang cukup atau bahkan sangat lama untuk kita bisa sampai di tujuan.

Kung Fu Panda tetap hanya film kartun, dan kenyataannya, tidak ada orang yang bisa jadi ahli Kung Fu hanya setelah berlatih selama beberapa minggu saja 😉


I was upset last night. I’ve started to do some free advertising (Instagram, Facebook, Path) to recruit sellers for my online marketplace and I’ve announced that the sellers can find us at hunters@thelenstory.com.

I was so excited that the website was underway and I was getting closer to my biggest dream, excited with the tremendous supports given by my families, friends, and even my colleagues in my current employer (yeah, I’m still working for someone else’s corporate too), until my sister in law texted me and she said that her friend could not send e-mail to that mailing group!

I instantly knew that I made mistake on the permission setting and I thought that I could easily fix it. I logged in to my domain administration account but then I was confused.

What did I do wrong?

What should I do to fix this?

So there I googled to search for some clues and it was super annoying that the given guideline was no longer matching with the latest version of the mailing service I use! I clicked here and there, I finally found the setting I was looking for!

The first trial, I told myself, “Oh well, this is easy.” I logged in to my personal Yahoo mail account and sent a testing e-mail to that mailing group… but it bounced back!

I googled again… it appeared that there was one separated setting that I should change. I changed it and sent a second trial e-mail… and it bounced back again! I rechecked everything, one by one, until I realized I missed clicking one button!

Alright, here we go… the third trial… and the e-mail didn’t bounce back to my Yahoo mail! I finally nailed it! But… wait. The e-mail was sent from my Yahoo mail, but I can’t seem to find it in my thelenstory.com inbox!

I refreshed my browser, over and over again, but still, the e-mail was not coming!

At this point, I was super upset to myself. If the same thing happens in my corporate job, I can just text IT Helpdesk and they will fix it right away. This kind of issue may never ever happen in my corporate job anyway. I can ask IT team to prepare the mailing group and they will get it done with no issue like this in the first place!

Can’t you see? My current corporate job is actually comforting!

Have a connection problem? Go to IT team.

Have a legal confusion? Consult with Legal team.

Tax administration? Let the Finance team handles everything (you have no idea how irritating it could be!).

Running out of money? Send e-mail to your HQ or regional office asking (or a bit of begging) for more funding, hehehehe.

But seriously, running a business is like “running” from your comfort zone. Unless you are very well funded, building a new company will push you to learn all the little things at work. You will have to roll up your sleeves even higher than your old corporate job!

Back to my group e-mail problem… how did it end? I finally realized that I hadn’t registered myself as the member of that mailing group! That’s why I didn’t receive the e-mail in my inbox, hehehe.

Having said that my old corporate job was comforting, running my own business is way more challenging to me. Yes it makes me have to touch the ground, but if you see it from another perspective, it actually makes me learn a lot of new things about building a company from the scratch. Until someday, this little scratch; this start-up, is going to be my very own corporate job.

Beberapa bulan belakangan ini, sejak gue mulai sering mengalami capek tanpa sebab, gue memutuskan untuk mengatasi masalah tidur gue. Baru tidur jam 1-2 pagi itu bukan kebiasaan yang menyehatkan! Dan bukan cuma soal tidur lebih awal, tapi juga soal tidur lelap yang berkualitas.

Setelah beberapa kali percobaan, akhirnya gue menemukan 10 tips untuk tidur yang lebih berkualitas:

  1. Bersihkan make-up, cuci muka, dan mandi. Selarut apapun sampai rumah, tetap harus mandi jika ingin tidur lebih nyenyak;
  2. Cari bantal dan selimut yang terasa paling nyaman buat kita. Coba beli bantal bulu angsa; ini nyaman banget kalo buat gue;
  3. Tempat tidur harus dalam keadaan bersih DAN rapih. Singkirkan barang-barang yang tidak perlu dari atas kasur. Kurangi juga jumlah boneka atau bantal kecil yang hanya membuat ruang gerak kita jadi lebih sempit;
  4. Matikan TV. Suara-suara yang mengejutkan dari tayangan TV bisa membangunkan kita di tengah malam. Lakukan hal yang sama dengan ponsel. Jangan biarkan notifikasi dari ponsel menganggu tidur lelap kita;
  5. Suhu ruangan harus tepat buat kita. Badan yang menekuk di bawah selimut atau tangan dan kaki yang bolak-balik dikeluarkan dari dalam selimut itu pertanda suhu ruangan belum sesuai. Sibuk mengatur posisi selimut juga bisa bikin tidur jadi tidak nyenyak! Jangan malas ambil remote AC dan sesuaikan temperaturnya!
  6. Jangan lakukan hal-hal yang yang terasa seru buat kita. Contoh, jangan nonton drama Korea kesukaan, jangan baca buku bagus, atau dalam kasus gue, jangan sibuk mengurusi bisnis pribadi sebelum tidur. Ini cuma bikin kita penasaran sehingga akan terus terjaga sampai larut malam;
  7. Jangan tidur dengan membawa beban pikiran yang berlebihan. Cari teman curhat yang bisa dipercaya. Mungkin tidak akan langsung dapat solusinya, tapi setidaknya, beban bisa berkurang dan tidur bisa lebih nyenyak!
  8. Saat mengalami mimpi yang terlalu menakutkan, atau saat mengalami sleep paralysis, cobalah untuk mengingat kenangan indah dalam hidup kita. Gue pernah coba dan ini betulan bisa mengeluarkan kita dari mimpi buruk itu!
  9. Biasakan tidur teratur. Sekarang gue sedang berusaha untuk tidur sebelum jam 12. Jika sudah terbiasa tidur jam 11 misalnya, maka kita akan mulai mengantuk dengan sendirinya tiap kali sudah masuk jam 11 malam; dan
  10. Biasakan juga bangun teratur. Ini paling susah, tapi harus diusahakan! Paksakan bangun di jam yang sama, ini perlahan-lahan akan membantu kita untuk bisa tidur di jam yang juga sama setiap harinya.

Punya tips tambahan lainnya? Let me know!

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The beauty of diversity. I'm glad that I met them along my career path at Lazada. Just a little help like this could mean everything to me and The Lens Story. Many thanks! ❤️
📷: @thelenstory 👚: @adidaswomen 👕: @nike 
#friends #friendshipgoals #diversity #photography #photooftheday #canon #snapseed #thelenstory Find someone who loves you properly.
The one who never intentionally let you wait for him.
The one who never makes you have to wonder how he truly feels about you.
The one who will definitely catch you and hold you tight as you fall for him.
The one who gives you all he has to be a better man, to fix what goes wrong, to fight for you and to never let you go.
You are too old for another Mr. Wrong, reward yourself with the right one.
Love yourself enough to leave your past, you deserve better.
📷: @thelenstory
💄: @yuficarolin.mua
👗: @calla.atelier
👠: @charleskeithofficial 
#love #life #quote #photography #photooftheday #thelenstory I'm not perfect. I make mistakes. I do the things I'm not proud of. I give up, sometimes. I hurt people, mostly the ones that I actually care about. I have a lot of flaws, but at least, I'm trying hard to be a better person. I'm no saint nor angel, but I'm not a pure evil either. I'm simply a human who is trying to be the very best that I can be. I'll never stop learning, until my very last breath.
📷 @thelenstory
💄 @yuficarolin.mua
👗 @calla.atelier
👠 @charleskeithofficial
#photooftheday #beauty #photography #quote #thelenstory

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About Me

What my blog is all about? It's all about my life; my very own fairy tale, that I would love to share. This is my story, my ups and downs, it's a journey to remember.