A Life With No Shortcuts

I grew up being exposed to people and instances where looking for the quickest, shortest solution was normal. It was always about “kaya yan” and “hanapan ng paraan” even if all odds were stacked against the situation. On one hand, this was good because it taught me to find creative and alternative ways of doing things and to thrive in very tough conditions. On the other hand, it also did not allow me to appreciate the process and to learn from the steps that needed to be taken to achieve the objective. A key point in my life happened and it made me realise that a life of shortcuts will eventually catch up on you. This was when I decided that from here on, in all that I will do and strive for, I will always do the right thing and be mindful of the process to get there.

I see this at work, especially now that I am embarking on something new, scary and exciting all rolled into one. I think I have finally found work that does not feel like work but something that I can truly see myself in. But this is not accidental. I believe that my various experiences have prepared me for this challenge. This is a very comforting and reassuring feeling, especially to many of us who have been searching for a vocation that truly matters. All the things that we go through is not wasted but is just part of the journey to find ourselves in the work that we do. And just like in all the roles I have taken on, I start once again as a newbie, trying to figure out things as I go along. What is different this time is I am really starting something, building it from ground zero and assembling the blocks to make this project come to life. It is also more apparent that I do not know a lot of things but that there are steps that I can take to learn more. I am just blessed to have mentors and idols who are generous with their resources, time and guidance, people who have gone out of their way to make sure that we are up to speed so we can go full steam ahead. These individuals have made being successful look so easy but from them I learned that there is no such thing as an overnight success. It is a process of constantly trying, of continuous iteration and of choosing purposefully.

I see this also in my running training. I have always been passionate about my running but I realized that if I wanted to be the best runner that I could possibly be, I really have to put in the hard work needed and be comfortable with speed. This is not easy since I have always been a steady eddie, intimidated by fast runners. I have also not followed a strict program for my running since I have never trained for a race that required me to finish at a certain time. But this time the goal is crystal- finish the London Marathon at a target time of 3:35 so I can use this race as my Boston Qualifier (BQ). So I have followed my program as much as I can and welcomed my coach’s constant reminder that I am not pushing hard enough. If this is what it takes to get there then I have to embrace the process. For me, there is no other way.

I also see this in my family life. I have just recently shared that finding time to be with your partner is very important. You can’t just expect that your relationship will be rosy and happy if you do not put in the time to nurture it. Same is true with the kids. Our children are creatures of routine and they have set ways of doing things. From them I learned that to get to a desired outcome, I have to take specific steps to get there. Take for instance sleep time. The ritual starts with bath, then brush teeth, then write a letter (I write a letter/journal for each of them every night), each one reads their letter (I read to Katy), read a funny book and make it sillier, read Katy’s book, read Julian’s book, drink milk, close light, touch mommy’s elbow and belly button. Whew. But this process has proven to be successful in getting them to sleep at a specific time. Crazy things happen when this is not followed, let’s not get into that.

So live a life with no shortcuts, find your purpose and live fully. Have great day!

Enroute Sahara2

As cliche’ as it sounds, revel in the journey and not just have your eye on the destination. Taken enroute to the Sahara. We took a lot of stops to just enjoy the trip, allowing ourselves to be amazed by the scenery. Throwback to 2008 🙂

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