The Emperor Has No Clothes – Adjusting to New World (and changes) with Rico Ngoma

Michael MicheliniBusiness, Ecommerce, Podcast0 Comments

What does that saying “The Emperor Has No Clothes” mean?

Had to look it up – but it means to me – “famous / important people” have the same problems and questions all of us have.


"This expression is used to describe a situation in which people are afraid to criticize something or someone because the perceived wisdom of the masses is that the thing or person is good or important."

It is so quiet in our community and our worlds now and I thought it was only me. I was on Rico’s Made In China podcast (check it out for sure) and we discussed how he is also feeling quiet and isolated in his circles and communities. So I thought, hey, let’s dig into that.

Many of us are feeling the same way and we need to know, we are not alone. 

Also in this podcast, we keep it AUDIO only. Old school but more personal. May do that again to be honest.

Topics Covered in this Episode

  • Intro Rico

    A regular guest on the show, and host of Made in China Podcast

  • The meaning of “The Emperor Has No Clothes”

  • Ways People Look Up to Podcast Hosts, Influencers

  • COVID gives us a “grass house” or a “brick house” test

  • Mike’s Temple Trip

  • Rico’s Unplugging

  • Chris Rock / Will Smith Opinion & Quotes

People / Companies / Resources Mentioned in this Episode

Episode Length 45:56

Thank you Rico as always for your insights.

Download Options

Show Transcript

[00:00:00] Okay, Aubrey you want to kick it off with the episode number? Hello, everyone. Welcome again, to another episode of Global from Asia podcast. Today, we’re going to have Episode 375. Welcome to the Global from Asia podcast, where the daunting process of running an international business is broken down, into straight up actionable advice.

[00:00:23] And now your host, Michael Michelini, I think there’s been exciting things happening at GFA community. We kind of trying to kind of merge the program, with GFA kids that you two have been helping a lot with, and, and there’s others behind the scenes helping with Wendy, of course, our fearless leader, helping that go.

[00:00:42] And we’re gonna try to kind of integrate that with the GFA adults or GFAVIP program and club? So I think stay tuned for more. I think we’re still just in our early stages of that integration. But we’re working. And I think, we just made a really cool new video. I think that’s pretty awesome.

[00:01:02] And they can check that out there? Agree. Very exciting times, Mike so go ahead and log on to and check out our new video there. Awesome. All right. Aubrey, how are you doing? We got some new, new people on our intro today. Yeah, I’m good to be joined with our other two members. And excited for this recording. I’m good by the way.

[00:01:28] Yeah. Lots of fun stuff happening. And Lori and Leslie, how are you?

[00:01:38] We’ve been very busy with our tasks on the team and we just got off the meeting with Ms. Wendy , actually. And, she had some great ideas to improve our program, our new project. So we will be, I and Leisle will be very, very busy in the incoming days. 

[00:02:00] Great. Yeah. And then after this, our intro today, we’ll turn off the recording and have our meeting about integrating with our GFA, you know, adults program, you know, you know, members, program and training.

[00:02:11] I think even Aubrey’s talking to a new member applicant in an hour, so it’s a lot of exciting things happening so that, you know, just so people listening or watching understand it, we’ve been really investing a lot in the GFA kids program. And converting it to a club program and integrating it with the parent parents or other members in the Global From Asia community.

[00:02:32] So it’s exciting times. All right. So let’s talk about this week’s show or Aubrey, how are you? I think you’re doing, are you guys all doing the elections next week? What’s this election thing Aubrey, you’re doing, I’m going to share. It’s national election here in the Philippines. It’s kind of, you know, frustrating because of many issues, but yeah, we’re hoping for the best. I think Monday, right?  May 9.

[00:03:03] So you’re going to go vote Lori? Huh? I’m not technically a registered voter yet. Interesting. All right. I’ll be, we’ll help you get set up. All right. So this week, this week show, you know, the title is the Emperor has No Clothes. Do you know what that means? Anybody want to make a guess? Or have you heard that before?

[00:03:30] Is it the Emperor’s New Groove? I think there might be some movies. It’s an old saying, I don’t know where I learned it, but it basically means like famous people. Like the idea of it, I think is the emperor, the emperor in the old times, it’s like the king or the leader actually fits the political discussion elections.

[00:03:51] They usually have their. Public face where they don’t have any problems. Everything is good. There are strong and powerful. There’s no problems, no issues, but they had no clothes means, you know, when they’re behind the curtain, you know, behind, off the stage, off the TV, they are normal people like, like us, right.

[00:04:12] And they have their problems and their issues and they can’t maybe hide that or, or they get exposed or, or shared. So this week’s interview is Rico. He’s another podcaster at Made in China podcasts. And he and I do a interview and discussion about, about that. You know, about a lot of times people idolize him, he goes to a bar and they know him and they, they, they think, you know, is special or different or, or, you know, Well, we’re all just normal people.

[00:04:39] So we talk about some of the vulnerabilities, especially the last couple of years with coronavirus pandemic affecting all of us. So we kind of talk about it and dive in. So it’s a, it’s a fun one. What do you think of that? Same.

[00:04:54] For me, it’s all that. Yeah. It all the bits that we’re all people, we make mistakes and not perfect. Yeah. I mean, Rico opened up in the end about some things he’s been facing. And I shared about my temple experience in November. I don’t know if Leisle was here when that happened. But I needed to take a, I needed to take a week off.

[00:05:16] This wall is thin here and the kids are banging against the wall almost literally. And I kind of get a break sometimes, especially the last couple of years. So, so that’s the interview. And then after the interview, maybe if you, anyway, he wants to share about some of, you know, I could share some more about my temple after the interview.

[00:05:37] So let’s go into the show. Okay, thank you everybody for choosing to listen to our Global from Asia podcast. We have with us, we’re saying, ah, we, we, we do these regular exchanges of interviews where Rico comes on GFA here and I go on, Made in China podcast there. So know, think we didn’t count yet, but we’re losing track at least three, four or five times.

[00:05:59] So great to have you again, Rico – Source Find Asia and Made in China podcast and friend. So how are you? So it was a pleasure man like we were talking about in the last podcast that we did, uh, for my show, not knowing how many, how many episodes we’ve done together. But like, I would say it’s at least on my side, four plus or five.

[00:06:21] Now, if you include the last one. Okay. So then how many times I’ve been on yours? It’s probably like three, four. Yeah, that’s fine as well. So we’re going into double figures, I think. Yeah. And then for me, it’s always cool because like, as I said yesterday, I was just like, I was listening to your podcasts before I started my company before in China.

[00:06:43] And, uh, I learned a lot from your podcast and there’s a lot of inspiration that I took. So I think this probably one of the reasons why I started my own podcast as well. Wow. So yeah, it’s always, like, I always try to remind myself because it can become very normalized, right? Like when you, you know, you start to work with somebody that you’ve learned from, or somebody that you maybe view as a little bit of a mentor, Good to remember that relationship.

[00:07:09] You know what I mean? Yeah. I know that in 48 Laws of power, they talk about like the, the student killing the mentor, what else? But I like, I don’t believe in that kind of stuff at all. Yeah, man. I mean, what’s that karate kid, something like that. Are we talking to him about, or a Splinter and ninja turtles?

[00:07:32] I think there’s like literally like one of the laws. Well, no, actually, maybe it’s opposite in 48 laws of power. Maybe I’m thinking about Sun Tzu where Sun Tzu talks about like the student that are becoming the master, then, you know, killing the mentor or the teacher, you know, that kind of stuff. And I know some people that actually like really go, go on those values and I’m like, This is not the 1700s.

[00:07:54] I know one man talking about old school stuff. I think we’re even entitled this show. The emperor has no clothes. And then I think the second part. Yeah, that’s another old one. That’s another, I don’t know if it’s from many of those books. But you know, I, I thought of that when we did our sh you know, I was on your show and a recording yesterday, we recorded and.

[00:08:20] You made me think of this. Like, you know, everyone’s got these social media influencer, you know, KOL, you know, but a lot of times they don’t share the real stuff and I looked up the Singh. Right. But yeah, go ahead. What do you think. Yeah. I mean, I think it’s, I mean, there’s a fear, there’s a, there’s a fear of retaliation and things like that.

[00:08:42] Like, even for me, uh, we’ve always tried to be as honest as possible about what goes on in, in Asia and China. And there’s definitely some things I would say we’ve said that. People could be offended by, uh, luckily most of our audiences abroad or they’re foreigners and 

[00:09:00] stuff. So it’s not like a big issue, but I know for a lot of the guys that are in China that are influencers and have big followings where they have both Chinese followers and, you know, foreign followers.

[00:09:12] It’s a little, it’s a very tricky situation, right? Because if you say too much, you do too much, you might end up in trouble. Um, your, your accounts might get blocked. So, you know, I have some visits from the CCP. I know. So, I mean, they do it, they do it to Hong Kong and is people like I I’ve heard. I remember there was one story about this woman that was running a shop in Hong Kong that was selling.

[00:09:40] Books that are banned in China. So a lot of, in mainland China, just for people that don’t understand the difference, Hong Kong and then mainland, and then a lot of mainlanders would go to Hong Kong and buy from that shop. Or she would deliver those books into, into mainland. And I think one day she just disappeared.

[00:09:58] I remember that editor was like, okay, what happened to her? Everybody knows, but nobody wants to talk about it. You know, fill in the blanks. Yeah. Yeah. And then, but it’s maybe in China, but I think everywhere in the world. But are you sure it’s more in the Eastern world? People don’t want to let show signs of weakness, you know, and then the way I see the emperor has no clothes part also is that it’s let me, I’ll read the quote.

[00:10:26] I found us some website, a link in the show notes, but it’s this expression is used to describe a situation in which people are afraid to criticize something or someone because perceived wisdom of the masses, is that the thing or person is good or important. Yeah. So like you’re saying, I guess I don’t really mean it for about China, but I guess even just like, you know, like you’re talking about the mentor, like in podcast hosts, like, you know, a lot of times people meet me at an event or something and they’re.

[00:10:56] Wow. So, you know, I’ve been listening or, you know, following your content and to meet you, but then they realize we all, all are like normal human beings, right. That have weaknesses and vulnerabilities. Yeah. I mean, that’s, that’s a big part of what I’ve always tried to tell people when I meet them for the first time.

[00:11:17] Cause there was one guy I met in Guangzho. It was so random. I was at like, you know, party pier. Yeah. Yeah. I go there a few times. Yeah. I forget there’s at one specific bar, but on the air or something, but yeah, I know, I know the bar you’re talking about just, I just don’t remember the name right now, but there’s another one that was like a Western team, the restaurant slush bar.

[00:11:41] And we were there and I was with a couple of my friends and just having a night out and I go to the bar and then this guy comes up to me and he’s like, Hey, can I buy you a drink? And I was like, I looked at him. Expat. And I looked at him and I was like, okay, why? I was just like, I mean, that’s nice, but like, I don’t need you to buy me a drink.

[00:12:03] And then he’s like, are you, is your name Rico? I was like, have I met this guy before? Cause I was like, I meet a lot. I used to meet a lot of people. So it’s entirely possible that I would have met him maybe like at a conference or something like that. And then I was like, yeah, he’s like, dude, you’re the reason why I moved to China.

[00:12:20] Wow. What do you mean? He’s like, I’ve been listening to your podcast for the past three years and I decided to move to China because of your podcasts and. Wait, so we’ve never actually physically met before. He’s like, no, no. I’ve like, I’ve only seen you on YouTube and listen to your podcast. And this is the first time that we actually met them.

[00:12:42] I just wanted to buy you a drink and thank you for inspiring me. And I will say I was blown away. Like I was like, okay. But at the same time, I then had a conversation with him just to tell him, like, I’m just a normal person. Like there’s nothing. You know, particularly special about me, they could, you, whatever it is that you think you can do, what I’ve done.

[00:13:04] You know, you can do it. There’s nothing again, the emperor has no has no clothes. There’s some, you know, that’s like has some special ability to do business in China, you know? Yeah, dude. Yeah. No same thing. Similar things have happened. And another point, you know, kind of just picking from what we talked about yesterday, I liked the part where we were talking about how now with this COVID and lockdowns, you know, you were saying like, Somebody said testing a brick house versus straw houses.

[00:13:34] I think what you did. Yeah. I was talking about the Chris Rock analogy that he was he’s been using in some of his interviews about COVID where he was talking about the three little pigs, uh, where it’s saying when during lockdown You learn what kind of house you’ve built. Right? So either it’s a storehouse or Woodhouse or in brick house, and we all know the story about the huff and the puff and blow the house down.

[00:14:00] So COVID is the big, bad Wolf and you are in your house and it’s not just about financial situations. Like if you’re in a straw house, easily blown down meaning from a financial standpoint, like, can you not work for two to three months and be okay, uh, can you not work for, uh, if you’re in a Woodhouse, can you not work for like three to six months to a year and be okay if you’re in a brick house, can you go three years, four years without working and still be okay.

[00:14:26] That’s that’s the financial standpoint. But it’s not just that. It’s also about like your relationship with your friends and family and all that stuff. Now you’re at home every day with your wife and kids or your girlfriend and kids, or just girlfriend. And this is like, usually you’d be leaving the house, going to office or your, your significant other will be leaving the house, going to office.

[00:14:46] Kids will be going to school. So you don’t actually spend that much time on a daily basis together. Like maybe the weekends you can do, but. You know, morning everybody’s gone and they come back in the evening, you have dinner together, and then you hang out a 

[00:15:00] little bit and then people go to bed. So now if you’re every day together, only hanging out with these people, you really tests you really test your relationships.

[00:15:09] Right? And there’s a lot of people that there’s a lot of people that have broken up during Covid. There’s a lot of people that have gotten divorced during COVID. Cause he realized like, ah, you know what? I don’t really like you. And some people are like, eh, I don’t really like my kids either. You know what I mean? So, yeah.

[00:15:27] So that was the analogy that he was talking about. I hear you, man. I mean, it’s true. I, I can’t imagine anybody listening. Hasn’t doesn’t relate to that thoughts, but I’ve been tested a lot. Yeah. I took a week at temple. I don’t know if we talked about, so you told me you were going, but you didn’t tell me after, when you came back, like what the experience was like.

[00:15:50] Before. Yeah, I’ll talk about that. But before I get into that, I mean, one that was like, I was totally really overworked. Uh, I love work. I think you know we’re,both hustlers. And there was, you know, a few different things and work, but it wasn’t just work. It was also living with my kids every day. We just moved to another apartment we moved and it is, one’s actually a little bit smaller.

[00:16:13] We’re in this like kind of smaller two bedroom. Um, So it’s like tighter and louder, you know, the walls are thinner. And that was, that was honestly, and I don’t know, I, that was part of the reason I had just moved in and it was like, that was around November. So I guess it was October, I moved here. And part of it was just a loud noise and the kids bouncing off the walls, they were at home and I said.

[00:16:39] I got to get out of here. Seriously, actually, Wendy, my wife was the one that suggested it and, but it definitely helped. So I recommend it honestly, I almost feel like I’m at a part where I’m maybe again, I don’t know, maybe, maybe, maybe once a year might be. Did you have a prasana? So the story was Wendy, you know, Wendy, my wife has practiced Buddhism, so she called up some Buddhist temples and, and convinced them to let this foreigner go there to be a volunteer.

[00:17:13] And we go there two days notice or whatever. I go there. I mean, I didn’t take anything. I didn’t even take my laptop. I think I took my Chinese phone and multiple phones took and just the Chinese, WeChat phone cause you have to scan QRs everywhere, but I wouldn’t call it. I barely brought anything. It was just like a knapsack, like not even list proper backpack, like kind of like a knapsacks drawstring bag and a couple sets of clothes.

[00:17:36] You know, one flip flops, one sneakers or something. We’d go up to this mountain. But, you know, it was a couple hours, it was in Eastern Shenzhen, I forgot the name. But we go there, you know, going up those stairs after you take, you take a bus to go to the temple in any walk up like massive, like three, four flights of stairs or whatever, big ones, and then go into the second floor of the admin office.

[00:18:01] Laowai like I do it here or whatever. And then when he’s like talking to them and there’s like some misunderstanding about me able to go there and not. You didn’t tell me that you’re bringing out of the hallway, she’s like, I, unfortunately, my Chinese is still not so good I can get by, but I didn’t really understand exactly.

[00:18:26] But. They’re just like, no, it’s not really for him. And I’m not going to want to have one was supposed to be willing. Was my Chinese language. Wasn’t good enough. They said communicate with me unless she stayed there, but she got in and then a second was I didn’t, I’m not gonna, I’m not going to be, I mean, I respect Buddhism, you know, I respect all religions, but I’m not going to say I’m a Buddhist and I’m not going to like, kind of like bow to a Buddhist statue.

[00:18:52] You know what I’m saying? Like I have my limits. I liked, I liked Buddhism as well. Actually. I want to do like a retreat where I disappear for like two months in go and be a monk. I want to do that. So the embarrassing part was we got rejected after like, I don’t know, 15, 20 minutes of bargaining and cause she’s she, I don’t know.

[00:19:14] She don’t honestly, you know, I don’t know where some of the money we go goes and some of it, I think she contributes, she does practice Buddhism and I don’t know, but she was a little bit upset, but finally. Lost face or whatever you say. You think, you think she was donating towards that temple and stuff like that.

[00:19:30] You know, she’s pretty active. All I can say is quite a bit of stuff. She does. She even goes to some of these retreats and stuff other anyway, we finally gave up and left and I’m like, it doesn’t matter if I stay in the temple, just book me a hotel near the temple, you know, as these little mountain hotels, let’s see a little really local man talking about super local, like damn, you know, whole toilet.

[00:19:53] Yeah. Squat toilet with the bed, the bed built into the wall. Cause it’s not really a bad it’s like, you know, and then like a small sliding door sliding window, you know, to the street. And, uh, I’ve only used. A squat toilet twice in my five-years in China. Wow, man. Nah, I’m a little bit, I use my, I use, I kind of use my hand on the wall, you know, I’m not, The first time.

[00:20:24] I didn’t have my technique. All the gory details. I dropped the soap in there is the shower right above it. You know, I dunno. Oh, Jesus Christ. So I thought I had a bar soap because I brought, I brought a bar of soap. So with me locally, I mean, they give you those little like packets, but basically man, I was super local, man.

[00:20:43] I, it was wild. It was one week and I just stayed at his like mountain hotel, you know, like a block away from the temple. But I had to power on my phone only to scan the stupid QR. They still make me do the QR, like, come on. Even at that temple, you’re going to enter the temple man. Like they’re super strict here everywhere.

[00:21:03] So like, you know, I got my hair cut in a park with some barber that was like in a park. No, it’s just like straight scissors. Or did you actually have like clippers. I mean, no electric. I used it. And then, yeah, it was scary. You know, they were laughing cause I was definitely the only foreigner around for a long time, you know, like, and they were getting to know me in the hood cause I was just walking around.

[00:21:32] But I think on a day, three or four, I was like, you know what? I feel like I’m getting a haircut. And I could, I kept seeing that guy at the tree in the park. So I go up to him and he’s got his, you know, he’s like this old Chinese guy that cuts hair and just chills and talks to like other old lamp, random dudes since.

[00:21:45] You know, so he sees the tree, you know what I’m talking about? Right. So you’d be walking up to the tree and they’re like, you know, like my going on, I sit down and they got the, they got the mirror like pegged in a tree trunk, and I’m sitting on a plastic chair, you know, like a stool.

[00:22:12] The craziest or the hair is normal, but then he’s Gua. I remember easily mean shave. Yeah. He shaved me with like one of those metal. You know, like a metal knife, just like a straight edge razor razor. That was scary. I mean, it kinda, you know, even cut me a little, a little bit, you know, but he, yeah, probably I probably, I probably would even trust, uh, I’m growing up my beard.

[00:22:39] If I’m on that situation, I’m going to come back looking scruffy. It was wild. Like I’m saying like the first day I, you know, I had no watch. I didn’t, you know, the phone, I only have the power. I try not to even look at Wechat. I try not to, you know, I just had to, I have to open, we tend to scan a QR, but I try my best to just cover the screen and open it, hit the plus to scan and then close and turn off.

[00:23:02] You know, I, there was a lot of hiking. I hiked, I went, so a couple of highlights. One was the first few days was really wild because. I would sleep. I just went to sleep when I was tired and I would just wake up when I wake up. Cause I had no alarm clock, you know, I didn’t know what time it was and I don’t know how much I slept for the first couple of days, but I definitely think I slept.

[00:23:24] I mean, I don’t know, but I would, it would get dark, you know, all it would do is hike and eat, you know, so, um, and that was really weird. So then I don’t drink anymore, but I would buy a Qingdao at the first couple of nights. Sometimes I couldn’t sleep because I didn’t know what time it was. And I was like, still like, kind of like, what’s that like, wired, right?

[00:23:44] Like I was like, but it wasn’t like the sauna, but I didn’t really talk to anybody, you know, but I would just basically walk didn’t know what time it was sleep. Um, it was a lot of hiking in the mountains to temple, but I didn’t really get it. Was it uncomfortable the first couple of days, but then did [00:24:00] you start to like get into it?

[00:24:01] Yeah, like I, as I did it, I started carrying like sometimes I would get, it would eat dinner. I felt like hungry. It would be like 4:00 PM and I would eat dinner and I was like, wow. It was sometimes a kind of see a clock, you know, somewhere. So I realized what time it was, but I remember one. Just like, I’m going to just drink a sing tao.

[00:24:19] I, I just bought a sing tao for like three or 4RMB and I sat at the bus station on rush hour in my light Buddhist monk stuff. Most people weren’t monks. Right? Like it’s still like kind of a city. So there’s mostly normal people and construction workers and stuff. And they’re just like seeing me sitting at a, at a bus.

[00:24:41] Yeah, I don’t think no, no, I’m just like the image, you know what I mean? The picture I look at things differently, cause they’re all rushing around and trying to get on a bus rushing here, rushing dare. And you’re just sitting there with a beer looking and there’s nothing to do, nothing to look at. Right.

[00:24:58] You’re just like looking at people and they’re just like brushing around. Yeah. I remember that a hundred percent man. Like, I mean, this isn’t comparing the same level, but like one of the highlights of my last year, like 2021 was during the national holiday. It was like a 10 day stretch. Right. I decided to go to Puerto Galera, which is like from Manila is like three hours away.

[00:25:22] You can take a car for two hours and take a a boat, uh, to the, to the island. And my girlfriend asked me one request. She was just like, can you just like, not work, you know what I mean? Like she wanted to organize stuff and everything. And she was like, cause I’m usually the one who’s like arranging everything.

[00:25:39] So I’m like on my phone and all this stuff. So she’s like, I will arrange just get off your phone and like, you know, finish whatever you need to do for work and then get off your phone. So I did that. And then the first day was a little bit strict. You know, one or two days, I was kind of still like, while I need to check my slack, I need to check my emails.

[00:26:01] And then after like two days, I was like, cause all in, you know, like, and I was super relaxed, like super chilled for the next five, six. Seven days that we were on that trip. The only thing that changes, of course, she started to freak out about the organizational stuff. So I had to then jump back into my normal mode and start to organize like, like hotels and things like that, because I’m just better at it.

[00:26:25] Like I’ve done it so much that it’s, I’m used to doing it and it doesn’t add stress to me. It just takes time. Right. So, but yeah, I can totally relate to that. Cause then when I came back to Manila, After being on the island for that period of time. And then we ended up going back to the island. I was on an island for two months, but I, when I came back to Manila, it was just like, You know, you come and you just say, you’ve seen a bunch of traffic and pollution and you’re watching people run around.

[00:26:56] And you’re just saying, I don’t know if I, I don’t know if I like this. I don’t know if this is good. I don’t know. Maybe, maybe, maybe it’s. We should have a different way of life. Yeah, dude. It’s true. I mean the other quote, I think it’s a Will Smith quote, which now you’re talking about Chris rock numberless Smith, but, uh, yeah, but I will Smith, I think is his quote that says.

[00:27:18] People work really hard to buy things that they don’t need or want to impress people they don’t like something like this. I’ve heard that. I’ve heard that before. Yeah. Will Smith can I add all of mine? So the fact that he slapped Chris rock, how do you feel about that? I mean, it’s a complicated situation. I think that he’s probably going through some stuff in his personal life, cause it was out of character.

[00:27:44] And I still think that he’s like a general, generally like a nice guy and everything. So I don’t think that his persona that he puts out into the world is fake. I think that he’s just was going through something and he snapped and he, I don’t even think it was about Chris rock necessarily. I think it was about.

[00:28:03] I mean all, you know, when sometimes when you become like the nice guy in, in public in public, just like within your friendship circle or whatever, people can start to take advantage of you. You know what I mean? Or, or they can start to think that they can get away with things because I’ll use the nice case.

[00:28:21] It’s not going to do anything, you know, so they can say things about you room, things like that or whatever. So I just think that he just was like, okay, I’m done. Like, I want to show people. I’m nice. But like, if you push me to a certain, I got my limits. Yeah. And I mean, obviously I don’t condone violence.

[00:28:39] Like I think he could have handled it differently. Yeah. But I understand where he was coming from. I feel bad for Chris Rock because to get slapped in front of hundreds of millions of people. Yeah. Like in slow motion, even a couple of Jesus Christ. And then I, what happened is I, it’s an interesting, you brought that up because my initial reaction was, I was thinking about will Smith because, you know, will Smith.

[00:29:07] If you, if you do weigh up the scales, that Will Smith is somebody that I care about more than Chris rock. Right. But I then like in the last week or so I started listening to some podcasts. I ended up coming up with this thing about brick house and reading stuff. I was listening to Chris Rock’s podcasts that he’s done in the last few years.

[00:29:27] And he’s been doing therapy and he’s been opening up about like being bullied. In school and all these things, and he’s had a lot of fucked up shit happen to him. So I felt bad for him after this because he was saying as well, like basically, you know, he’s always been like the skinny, small dude and how he got out of some, certain situations was humor.

[00:29:49] Um, and that’s probably why he became a comedian. And so like, I think for him in that moment, it’s like he got bullied in front of the world. So it’s like a, yeah, like, so I feel bad for him as well. Like I have, I’ve nothing but respect for him and how he handled it was classy man. Like, I don’t know. I don’t know if I would have handled it like that.

[00:30:11] You know? I know he just took it and just kept going. I don’t know. I mean, yeah. I would’ve expected him, you know, and the way I know Will Smith, I would’ve expected him and his wife to just get up and leave. Right. You don’t go up and hit him, but you’re just, if you just stood up in the middle, cause there were a kind of front and they just walked out.

[00:30:32] I think. Maybe he went to speak to him backstage and said, whatever the same thing is it keep my wife’s name and you can yell, but even yelling, leave, go on stage. And anyways, okay. I’m sure he regrets it. I’m sure he regrets it. And it was, it was attention. Yeah. But, yeah, I guess we’re going back to the emperor, you know, even that, I mean that maybe it has COVID, like you said, maybe he’s going for something different.

[00:30:58] Who knows. I mean, we’re all going through, but that’s, that’s, that’s another, that’s another example of the emperor wears no clothes, right? That’s another example you can say, we have Will Smith on a pedestal. We’re thinking about this guy, like it’s Will Smith. You know what I mean? And then you see him do something that’s very, very human, which is lose his mind in front of the world.

[00:31:19] And then you realize like, yeah, he’s just another dude. He’s just another regular dude exert. Yes. He has accomplished some big things in his life, but at the end of the day, it’s still human. Yeah. All right. Well, we are coming back to, you know, our, you know, Let’s think back to our listeners, you know, these entrepreneur business owners, trader people kind of like us, you know what I mean?

[00:31:41] I know a lot of people are going through a huge stress. You know, I’ve been saying this on some other episodes, but separation, luckily I’m really, even on a scale of stress and those are screaming kids on the other side of the wall. I mean, I think obviously I feel blessed I’m back with them that there were some close calls where I barely got.

[00:31:58] Into China and in other situations, but there’s a lot of people separated. There’s been, yeah. I mean, there’s been, I’ve, can’t say very directly, but there’s an indirectly suicides of friends of friends, you know, that I’ve, I guess, felt like it got so bad financially or business or friends. And like you said, divorces, you know, split ops, like, and it really goes back down to what matters, right?

[00:32:26] Hopefully doing some kind of work or career that you enjoy doing, not just doing it, you know, for the financial gains. And I hope that’s the main lesson that I hope a lot of people have taken away in this traumatic couple of years, right? Yeah. Yeah. I mean, it’s like, do you have a brick house or straw Woodhouse and take.

[00:32:49] It’s not just financial, right? It’s about your psychological health, your personal, uh, physical health, your personal relationships,your work, and every, I mean, I’ll be honest with you. Like I’m doing therapy right now. I’m doing personal therapy. Um, oh, okay. Thanks for sharing. Yeah, so like I started doing it, uh, it’s like, uh, like a month ago, a month and a half ago, I I’ve done therapy before I did it when I was in college.

[00:33:16] Cause it was the time period when I went through, I wasn’t sure if I wanted to continue with my business degree or switch to psychology. And I was like feeling guilty because my parents already spent so much money on my school fees and all that stuff. So, and then I decided to continue with business.

[00:33:35] You know, I always trying to work through those thoughts and everything. I even, I even did like some psychological evaluations and all that stuff that time period. So, I mean, for me, therapy has never been a stigma. Like it’s never been as, maybe I wouldn’t talk about it publicly or whatever, but it’s never been like something where I’m like, I’m embarrassed or anything like that.

[00:33:55] But yeah, like right now, the reason why I started doing it was partly because of this COVID stuff. Partly because I, I just turned 30. Right. I turned 30 a month ago and I’m most of the youngest in my family. And yet I have a lot of responsibility within my family. Like when I say my family, I mean, youngest kid, but I am treated sometimes like, I’m the oldest.

[00:34:23] And a lot of different ways. So I have like these responsibilities with my family. Then I have responsibilities in my personal life. And then I have responsibilities at work as the CEO of the company. So sometimes it can be a lot of pressure, man. You know what I mean? A lot of pressure. And I expect to feel that, and especially in a situation right now where I’m not getting to do a lot of the things that I used to do to alleviate pressure, which would be, you know, during the lockdowns is whatever is like, uh, I wasn’t able to go and do more time.

[00:34:51] I wasn’t able to travel. I wasn’t able, you know, all these things that would help me deal with my day-to-day stresses. It was a lot. So I was like, I’m trying to. You know, peers through these things. And some of the realizations I’ve had in therapy is that as much as I before COVID, and before I took on some of these responsibilities, I was traveling a lot in during my life.

[00:35:15] Kind of like thinking about myself more than others during this time period, drink over it. I kind of transitioned into thinking about others more than I think about myself and not taking enough time for myself. Um, And just, and then that pressure allowing the pressure to weigh on me. Um, so that’s one of the things I learned about in my therapy sessions was like, I actually have to make sure that I’m taking care of, make sure I’m giving myself my own space and time, even though I have all these responsibilities, I still have to give myself my own space and time.

[00:35:49] It’s like, it’s, it’s, it’s like, I forgot that I have to do that. If that makes sense. Yeah. Yeah, so important for sure. We, we both are workaholics. I think a lot people, I think listening to these, you know, either of our podcasts are, you know, high achievers, super, super workaholics. So learning, doing, is like, It’s, uh, it’s definitely needed.

[00:36:18] We have to schedule it because we can always work. You know, it can, there’s always going to be work. You know, I think my part actually, just the other day, somebody on my team was trying to remind me, cause they know I work like nonstop. So they’re just like take a break. It’s even a holiday. We’re recording these on a holiday, at least a Chinese holiday and you know, work in the past two days.

[00:36:39] I know. Right. It’s like a holiday, but I do think we can try to be nicer to ourselves. Right? Like we are usually are the hardest on ourselves. Probably most listeners. I, I definitely try. Like, I mean, I definitely, you know, I think yesterday when we were doing our pod, um, I talked about the reason why I got into entrepreneurship is for freedom.

[00:37:00] Right? So like, I definitely have these moments where I just say, I just say, screw it up. Like, you know, I’m going to go somewhere. Take some time off for a couple of days, even if it’s during the week or something, or I’ll go work remotely, you know, so. Got it. Yeah. Okay. I think we maybe got a rough start to wrap up a little, a little bit.

[00:37:22] I mean, this has been cool. I hope, I think as you know, I’m always trying to think of the listeners. I think the main point that we thought of this topic or is just to make sure people remember that, you know, we all have rough times, you know, even the great Rico podcast hosts and Mike. We are emperors without our clothes

[00:37:44] Sometimes, you know, like you, you just kind of shared a, you know, you some therapy, honestly, I’ve had friends really not saying in a bad way, but telling me I need it. Maybe the temple was literally, honestly, temple is kind of like a therapy. I think we all have some form of therapy that we do, but actually psychotherapy sitting down with us psychologists or therapists and just psychoanalyzing yourself.

[00:38:07] Uh, I think it’s, I think it’s important for. Yeah, I think it doesn’t matter if you were going through like a really difficult patch in your life where you’re just kind of good and coasting, whatever. Like, I think it’s as good to explore that side of yourself because there’s things that I learned about myself that I suppressed feelings or memories from 10 years ago, 15 years ago.

[00:38:28] And, you know, exploring that side of it, I was like really surprised. I was like, I don’t even remember how did I remember this one? This feeling that I’m having is this in 15 years, you know, like. Yeah, exactly. Well, you know, before we wrap up, it’s always a pleasure to have you back. I’m sure we’ll do it again soon.

[00:38:46] What you know, made in China podcast, right? With some drops from And we are launching a discord soon as well, so that will be linked up eventually. But yeah, that will be on that. Our services page, SFS, uh, dot com source Um, and then the discord link should be at the bottom of that page.

[00:39:14] Okay. Okay. I’m just typing out. There’ll be exclusive, exclusive content on the discord. Okay. Okay. Great. All right. Well, thanks as always Rico and glad we made this happen and just was a pleasure to have you on the show and being on your show. So. All right. Cheers, man. There, it went by so quickly. I know, again, we feel like we have fun, man.

[00:39:36] I’m sure your listeners got a lot out of this, you know, it’s just, we gotta be nicer to ourselves is how I think I see it, but we could have been talking for another hour. I know. Right. That’s why I’m like, man, I’m losing track of time here. All right. So that was the interview is Rico. Thank you, Rico. I think he’s been on five, four or five times on this show actually.

[00:39:55] And I’ve been on his show that many times too. So what do you, what do you ladies think of? You know, some of the points like the, maybe we could talk about the Chris rock getting slapped. Do you have an opinion or thought of that? Will Smith, a lot of people look up to Will Smith, right? Like he does seem like he’s a positive role model.

[00:40:14] Even Rico says he was like a role model to him. And it was kind of shocking to see that happen. Do you have any insights or thoughts? Well, when they say too much of anything is bad. Hm, too much of anything is bad. Right? So too much of a joke, whether you know it or not. And then they say ignorance of the law excuses, no one.

[00:40:42] Right. You don’t know it, but it’s not really a good reason to use it because what he said was he didn’t know that. Well, Smith’s wife doesn’t or is actually suffering from a disease. Oh, he said that she made it, he said, he said he didn’t know that. So he made fun of it because he just thought that he, she just wants to shave her head off.

[00:41:10] Um, yeah, I guess that makes it a little bit, if it’s true, then that does make it a little bit different. Cause yeah, if you notice somebody has a disease and you make fun of it, especially something that’s serious, it’s a. But even though I said it in an interview with Rico and, you know, I, I think if I, if it was me, I don’t know, maybe Wendy would have gone up and slapped him properly.

[00:41:36] Uh, we might have, I would have gotten up and walked out, maybe, you know, that’s I think what I would’ve done. I would’ve maybe just, I wouldn’t known him. Maybe try not to say anything, but I would have tried to just walk out, you know, and maybe of course be seen as walking out. You know, that that’s maybe how long.

[00:41:54] Of course it’s hard to know how you react, you know, but I do. Does anybody here want to share some of their. Vulnerabilities, like Rico says you, he went to, he’s going to therapy now for the last month. I didn’t, it didn’t expect him to share to, you know, I kind of set him up my temple week, uh, unplugged to, to decompress.

[00:42:15] I don’t know. You know, luckily I don’t know. I hope. We’re saying how, like, in, in, in there’s been some suicides because of COVID or there’s been divorces and, and family disruptions. I hope nothing happened for anyone here, but I don’t know. I don’t know. I just put that open. If anybody wants to add some points to our closing remarks of this show, the COVID has indeed taking a toll, um, has taken a tool and is still taking a toll on everybody right now.

[00:42:48] I’m not really sure if the new variant is in our city, because there have been reports that a New Zealander or a person from New Zealand came on a business trip here a few weeks ago. And it was said that he had the new virus, but it’s a very trying time this week because yes, national elections is on Monday and I guess we cannot afford to what you call this to have the virus sprints early.

[00:43:21] So we do not know any reports if there have been cases through right now, but the government is keeping it so low. So it’s kind of stressful. We are in the dark when it comes to, um, Contact tracing confirmed cases because of the election on Monday. God. Yeah, I think in China, a lot of this pressure has happened because it’s not really elections, but there is a big government meeting in October every four year.

[00:43:53] I believe I don’t want to be wrong, but I think as four years they have all the big shots in the government meet and talk. And that’s where they decide who will be the. Emperor for the next four years or whatever, so that it’s not elections in China as you know, but that’s when they decide. So some people think this whole pressure, all this lockdowns and stresses because of the government leadership meeting in October, because there are people that maybe want to change.

[00:44:23] There are people on the inside trying to maybe. Have different opinions of things, you know, as you can imagine, you know, so it’s dangerous to get political. I don’t want to disappear. So here you are a foreigner they’re going to say Lori, you’re like all of a sudden New Zealand, New Zealander came and brought the virus.

[00:44:45] You know, that’s how it is in China is where like these dirty foreigners that brought the virus here. I don’t want to get, I don’t want to get into it, but where did it seem to start? I mean, I noticed some people say it didn’t start in China, but I mean, as far as I can tell, it looks like it started in China.

[00:45:02] I know that the Chinese people said it started in Italy. I don’t want to get political here, but somehow it’s amazing that the virus came from foreigners in China. It’s kind of unbelievable, but that’s how it is here. So we’re like these dirty foreigners that bring viruses here. We did not know that people on the outside.

[00:45:22] Even though I’ve been here, you know, I haven’t even left. Well, I came in March, but I didn’t even leave. They think I be dangerous. I’m some foreigner that came in with the virus . I don’t want like, it’s crazy right. To get more involved in running an international business, please visit our website at

[00:45:46] That’s Also be sure to subscribe to our iTunes feed. Thanks for tuning in.

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