Learn to chill

I have recently realized that I am in a position that when something breaks, I alone can fix it and when I find myself ill-equipped or unready for the challenge, I panic. Sometimes to the point of a heart attack - well- almost - but not quite.

I don't know why I expect so much of myself. I don't know why I am hard so hard myself. Maybe I just want to be able to achieve some things in this world and I want it too quickly, too much, too fast?

Now I'm just feeling lost. Like there's too much on my plate and I don't know where too start. Last year I started simplifying my life, got rid of some stuff I thought would weight me down but in the process, I started acquiring knowledge I thought would help me get to my next level. But then, they all sort of got mixed together and jumbled out - to the point that it's getting more complicated than simple. So much for minimalism.  Jack of all trades, master of none.

I'm seriously considering taking a break from my business and just focus on learning. But I will lose my clients in the process. Or maybe that's not the way to go. I should learn to collaborate with others. Maybe I should just focus on what thing at a time. I am after all just human and not superhuman. Everything is just overwhelming right now and my focus is all over the place.

I should learn to stop and chill. Meditate. Take time to think this through. Breathe.


Ole Ole!

So I just finished watching Elizabeth Gilbert on TED Talks. And it reminded me that I used to write. And that prompted me to pick up my laptop and just type tonight. Because something peculiar happened this weekend that I need to face and talk about. And examine why it happened.

It was Saturday, and I had a whole list of things to do.

I make websites. And I have this project that requires me to learn a lot of things that I don't have time to learn. Anyway, I was experimenting on doing something which has not worked for about a month and I know I'm missing something and I can't find it. Anyway, I was working on a website, and did something to prepare the site for back-up. After a click, the screen went white which it was not supposed to do. But it did. And I felt fear envelope me and panic set it.

So I stood up and tried to psych myself that it was alright, that it will come back, that the server was just processing something and it will be normal in awhile. I then realized that my hands were shaking and I was panicking. I don't know if it's age or stress or pressure. But I got really afraid of what it was doing to me. Hands shaking, palm sweating, almost-had-a-heart-attack episode - that was just wrong.

After awhile, the site came back. And I was right, the server was processing and it just needed a bit of time. But it bothered me a lot. So I took a break and watched Train to Busan - and I screamed my fear out.

I knew I just need to take time to study about the thing that had happened. That the panic episode was unnecessary had I only read that some websites do that depending on size of data. That I need to practice doing it again and again so that when it happens again, I will not kill myself by hyperventilating. That it will not kill me if the worse happens.

"Every pursuit, every passion, comes with a shit sandwich" - Elizabeth Gilbert. She said that if you get a sandwich while doing the thing you love, and you still want to do it and you feel better doing it than not doing it - then just eat the fucking shit sandwich.

So that panic attack - that hands shaking, palm sweating, almost-had-a-heart-attack episode - was my great shit sandwich this weekend.

And yeah, I still want to make websites. So F*cking Shit! This shit sandwich is horrible but I'm eating the whole damn thing.

P.S. Re: creativity, it helps that this great thing that I do, this thing that helps people somehow, that makes it convenient for other people to get data they need, it does not come from me. So I shout Allah, Allah, Allah! God God God! Ole Ole Ole!


45 Random Lessons @ 45

In keeping up with tradition, let'e celebrate life.

Eternally grateful Lord. Salamat gid.
  1. I make my own happiness.
  2. I am stubborn, and crazy and I like it.
  3. I am braver than I believe, stronger than I seem, smarter than I think (A.A. Milne)
  4. Balance is the zen of all bad habits
  5. Create! Para sa ekonomiya at para sa sarili.
  6. Ideals and principles are guides, not rules.
  7. If you want to explore creativity, break your own rules.
  8. The world owes you absolutely nothing ... but ...
  9. Ask the world and the world will conspire to help you get it
  10. Thinking that life will be better in the future is a waste of time. Live now.
  11. Save the world because you can.
  12. Trying to look good limits my life
  13. It is never too late or too early to be whoever you want to be.
  14. The God I believe in is all good. Take your negativity elsewhere.
  15. Do what you love and you never have to walk a day in your life.
  16. Complaining is silly; either act or forget.
  17. No one can tell me I can't do it except me.
  18. "Plant your own garden. Decorate your own soul. Instead of waiting for someone to bring in the flowers."
  19. Money does not make me happy.
  20. Material things are best enjoyed in small doses.
  21. Don't work hard, work smart
  22. Before anything else, ask the right questions.
  23. Do not stop questioning. Ask questions until there are no more questions to ask
  24. Solve the root of the problem and you will have solved the minor ones too.
  25. Love is not a feeling of emotions but a decision of the will.
  26. Love consumes. Like pain, it demands to be felt.
  27. I don't need many friends. I just need the few true ones.
  28. Family is important.
  29. If you're born near a holiday like Christmas, people will forget your birthday. So it's either you sulk and count the people who forget. Or call them to celebrate your limitless blessings. It took me 30 years to learn that.
  30. Trust is like swimming. The only way to learn is to get into the water.
  31. You don't drown by falling in the water. You drown if you stay there.
  32. Not being truthful works against me.
  33. Helping other people help me
  34. Everything I do always come back to me
  35. Respect is earned, not demanded
  36. I eventually take things for granted over time.
  37. Travelling is therapeutic and gives a new perspective for life and creativity.
  38. I need people and will have to constantly learn to ask for help.
  39. Counting my blessings is my best weapon against despair.
  40. Assuming is stifling and mother of all mistakes.
  41. Writing keeps me grounded
  42. Acceptance and humility is the first step to changing what you hate about yourself.
  43. Teach. Impart knowledge. You will learn.
  44. If you can't be smart, be funny.
  45. "Never take life too seriously. You will never get out of it alive." (from Bugs Bunny I think)


Marching to a different DO-rum

So I'm quitting school again. My 5th college. My sisters will be furious. I waste money and that's an awful truth. My last three colleges were paid by me - they were not a total waste. I did pick up a few things here and there. Accounting skills for one. And I can now understand shorthand.  

But hear me out - or rather, let me talk coz I'm practicing my speech to those who would be furious - my sisters most likely. 

When I got to college, I didn't know what I wanted to do. So I took up accounting. I liked it but it was just another course. I later discovered that I really don't want to work. I want to DO - to use my skills on work I would love to do everyday. Very few people have that kind of luxury. Most of them are rich enough to be allowed that luxury. I didn't ... at first.

The year I told my mom I quit school, I started working at odd jobs with computers. I finally got a paid job and I was taught Excel - it was easy and the ease of learning it was a revelation for me. I learned to organized data and realized that I've been doing just that at a younger age, on notebooks - lists and expanded lists.

When I got to government work I was pretty good with computers. Then I attended an HTML seminar. I think that totally cleared any  doubt what I wanted to DO. No schools were offering courses on IT then except STI and I was pretty busy making ends meet to even consider school. I was handling expenses when my mom got sick and handled it awhile longer after she died so school was no longer an option. So I learned everything I wanted to learn on the internet. 

I got pretty good and started a small business on my free time - making artwork, logos, print designs eventually, websites. It was the scariest yet the most fulfilling work I've ever done. And I knew this is what I wanted to DO.

I have recently been promoted and my boss encouraged me to finish school because the next position in my line of work will require a degree. I was also in the position where I can now afford to get myself to school but the courses I wanted had steep tuition. On the encouragement of my co-workers and family, I decided to settle to just getting a diploma - cheap, easy - any diploma. So I enrolled.

I am on my 1st semester of my 5th college, to be exact, just after my first exams, when this school offered online IT degree courses. It was a new program, so new that nobody I knew heard about it. Tuition was steep but they allow students to take a few online classes at a time in a trimester enrollment. It will probably take me a lot longer than the current school. But I will surely have computer subjects every effing trimester.

I don't want any other line of work except with computers. I'm not good with people but I know how to handle code - I love handling code. They just hired another IT guy in the office so that makes it 7 guys below me - four of them IT graduates. I'm now at the highest position I will ever be as an undergrad in an IT position and I'm now handling web design because no one else had the experience or the know-how in my division. Even with a degree in a different course, I will probably fare well when I go head to head with any of these guys in web design - but will my current course teach me how to be a better programmer? Probably not. It will probably make me a better division head - and I don't want to be a division head. I have a very specific goal. Think Mike Rowe.

It makes no sense to me to take a course that will make me better at something I do not want to do. It might take me 10 years to graduate but don't great artists suffer for their craft? I will never get rich but that was never what I wanted to be. I just want to be happy ... and to DO things I am passionate about. And if it things don't work out in my current job, I will still be working as a web designer and doing programming jobs on the side.

If that makes me an idiot - well, I'd rather be a happy idiot than a ho-hum graduate. I am where I should be doing what I should DO.


Wok is relative

It's important to me that I love my work. If I can't be rich enough to bask in the sun 24/7, the best thing I can do is enjoy what I do and get paid for it.

Although I make excuses not to go somewhere else to relax because of work, it does not necessarily mean that work is all I do. I do go out with friends, I do take vacations, I do work that I hate and I do work that I love to hate.

I am very much aware that there should be a balance in work and play. But just because you don't see me in facebook basking in the sun, it doesn't mean I'm not getting that balance.

Mini-breaks can be reading a book, watching a movie, coffee or drinks or desserts with friends, or just enjoying time with family at home or somewhere else. All that to me is as enjoyable as dancing in the streets, frolicking in the pool or just enjoying the view. There are different levels of bliss of course. A good balance to me means more smiles than frowns in a day. That to me is a good day.

Chances are, if you don't hear from me, it's probably because I'm having a mini-break or maybe immensely happy with my work ... or play.

And if you do see me in facebook, it's probably because I'm in-between mini-breaks :)


General Motors

My sister and I have decided to try out the General Motors Diet. Mainly because we definitely need a weight loss program because we are obese and bordering on the unhealthy - no, scratch that - we are unhealthy. And since we don't seem to be attracted to the Zumba trend - which is quite strange because we love dancing - we decided to try this one out and see where it takes us a week from now.

So ... I started on papaya this morning.

I have very little self- restraint when it comes to food but I was thinking that if I can't show a little self-control on food for one week - then I'm probably hopeless. But I'm pretty determined to prove to myself that I'm not entirely hopeless. I'm always a possibility. At least I tell myself that haha.

So let's wait and see. Will keep you posted. No hunger pangs yet.


Life is sooo peculiar

So I've been thinking ...

Am I going way over my head by taking new complicated jobs? Or maybe I should take the risk and learn something in the process? I actually looove doing this. It's new and exciting and so much to see and learn. It's quite a challenge. But it scares the hell out of me.

What was that movie about change? That when you see change happening, your heart beats faster, adrenalin starts pumping and everything around you goes on alert mode. Because it's expecting, it's waiting for something to explode, go wrong or maybe that magical moment, when everything goes right as planned! Because as much as change is the most life threatening experience you'll ever encounter, it's also probably the most exhilarating event that you will remember most when you grow old.

So here I am again. Rationalizing fear. Justifying. Pushing myself to take a leap when I'm most at my most logical and safe being.

I can't be satisfied. Life is too big of an adventure to just say, "I'm okay here. Let me stay here. Don't bother me here." There's a rebel inside me somewhere ... a Darna. Right now I can't see her. But hell, I'd like her to show her ugly head and kiss tomorrow goodbye. Co'z life is too short.

I need to have a little faith in me. And some courage would not hurt a bit.

Carpe diem.