Why I’d say NO to unnecessary KUMUSTAHAN

When you were in college, talking to your high school classmates appeared to be something you’d always look forward to. It was a pure bliss and the “kumustahan” (catch-up) was genuine. So when I graduated, got employed, and got unemployed, I’d still go for that mini-reunion. Why not right? I honestly thought it was completely alright and healthy. Although I was unemployed, I did convince myself that it was not something to be ashamed of knowing that it was my choice. I even concluded that Life Is How We See It and we shouldn’t bother ourselves by comparing each other’s life. But then again, those were just my thoughts that time.

I had certain realizations after our last talk. I had this one classmate who implicitly compared our lives. She did emphasize how someone who was not an achiever in high school happened to have a job (I was an honor student). Inadvertent or not, it was completely annoying. I didn’t know we do need to compare. Besides, we’re still young and we have a long way to go. It is too early for that shitty comparisons (if that’s even necessary).

I guess this story is not new to the most of us. You might have that one “friend” who has a habit of pressuring you. Dear, you have to do something about it. You don’t need such people in your life. As an adult, you should know the essence of avoiding stressors. Keep your circle smaller. Cut connections to those people who want you to be insecure of yourself. Strengthen your relationship to those who lift you up and understand the idea of life’s timing.

Let them wonder what’s going on with your life. And if ever they try to reach you out, it wouldn’t hurt to say NO to unnecessary kumustahan.

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2017 Take Aways

To say that 2017 was tough would be an understatement. I admit that I owe myself apologies and promises. But no matter how crazy the past year was, the important things are the lessons it taught us. Here are my 2017 take aways:

  1. It’s okay to be lost.

    Being lost doesn’t mean you’re going nowhere. You don’t need to have your life figured out already. Maybe the uncertain path you’re taking now ends to a better place where you really should be.

  2. Don’t be afraid to choose happiness.

    It’s completely alright to give up small things than to live unhappily every freaking day. You have to let go of things that make you feel worse. You deserve better. I learned this after giving up my previous job. No regrets!

  3. Don’t be hard on yourself.

    It’s like saying “do not compare yourself to others”. Others’ opportunities are not yours. There are things that are meant only FOR YOU. Stop torturing yourself by thinking you’re being left behind. You must appreciate yourself for choosing to live.

  4. Avoid toxic people.

    These include those who make you feel less of a person. No one should make you feel bad about yourself. Moreover, distance yourself from people who jokingly shame you even on social media. They don’t worth your time.

  5. Appreciate people who never leave.

    Thank those persons you can count on even you’re on your weakest point and your life is screwed up. They are your TREASURE.

  6. You don’t need other people’s validation.

    The only validation you need is the one coming from you. You don’t need everyone’s approval. The way they think is beyond our control. You don’t exist to please people.

  7. It isn’t your job to explain yourself.

    As long as you don’t harm anyone, just ignore them. People who care about you are those who matters. If you want to do something, go for it! If not now, when? Nevermind your doubters.

  8. It is alright to be different.

    I know it is scary from time to time. It is comfortable for some not to be noticeable and just blend in. But sometimes we have to get out of the norms. Even if your friends are getting the job you all expected to have, do not be frightened to change path. It’s okay to start from zero than end up faking it.

  9. God listens.

    We must admit that not every second our friends are within our reach. They also have their own matters to handle. With God, you don’t have to wait for such availability. He is the one who never gets tired of listening.

  10. Never get tired of dreaming.

    Do not lose hope. Even if it looks like the end of your journey, you have to get up and continue walking. You might not know what the future awaits you, but your dreams will keep you moving.

New year is a new beginning. I hope everyone will look forward to this year with excitement and optimism. Happy New Year! ❤

Focus On Your Own Success

We always have that one friend who seems to have a better job than us. We always have that one former classmate who has a good career compared to us. We always have that one colleague who travels often without the thought of getting broke. Then you ask yourself,”When can I be the better one?”

Looking at other people’s lives makes you forget your own goal. You are always occupied with the thought of them getting the most out of their lives. Well in fact, you do have a different opportunity in store for you. It is a cliché thing to say,”Do not compare yourself to others”. Yet we need to be reminded every now and then.

We often forget that each of us is chasing various things. If your friend dreams to be a model and becomes one, then you should be happy knowing someone dear to you gets the success she wants. You wouldn’t know how she worked hard to achieve her goal. Therefore you should not expect to get the same opportunity for things you do not pursue.

If your friend is living her dreams, so what? That’s HER DREAMS. NOT YOURS. 
You don’t have to feel sorry for yourself. You have your own dream to pursue, may it be small or big, that’s where you should focus on.

Life Is How We See It

Life has a way of showing us light. Eventhough we think life won’t get any better, bad days will be gone eventually. In the most unexpected moment.

I am unemployed for about five months now. I must admit that I never had a back-up plan after quitting.I’d just go with whatever happens that time. I did not apply to another school.I did not even attempt on taking my Master’s degree. It was like the end of my story. No progress at all. Those were the worst days and months of my life. It also didn’t help that my college friends looked so happy, content and have their lives figured out.

I was lost. I felt alone even in a crowded place. As I walked, thoughts were flooding in my mind and I was trying not to tear up. I couldn’t even find words that would be enough to describe how I felt. Sadness would be an understatement.

Until I got to reconnect with my High School friends. It was just a normal talk where we tried catching up with each other’s lives.That was when as if someone slapped me the truth. It was just me. It was just me who kept on pressuring myself. It was just me who thought they were judging me. It was just me who assumed that there was a competition. Only me. 

After how many months, I am now finally breathing. Inhaling all the positive vibes and exhaling all the negative thoughts. My employment status is still the same, but I am not the same person anymore. If there is one thing I have learned from this experience, it is to stop pressuring yourself to figure out everything in your life because sometimes God can do it for you.

First Sight

My hand against my chest felt how my heart beat fast. I was singing the national anthem but my eyes focused on him near the flag. My knees became like a jelly that I couldn’t stand straight. It was an exciting moment… the two of us with the invisible crowd. 

That morning was the beginning of our story that has never started.

HAPPINESS: A Matter Of Choice

​It’s been almost two months since I left my first teaching job. I must admit there were times when I asked myself if leaving was a good choice. For some, this may be a bad decision. Who’s in the right mind to leave a good paying job? Maybe I am crazy. I am crazy enough to throw everything away.

Even though I still don’t have a work now, I feel free from the feeling of emptiness that took away the hope I had. In this period of my life, I have come to realize the importance of everything that surrounds me. My friends are constantly telling me that I will get through this. They even suggested things that I might do for a while. 

As what I have said in my previous blog, I still want to pursue teaching. In fact I am waiting for the update on my teaching application in Japan. There is no assurance that I will land a job in Japan but I want to stay positive about it. Maybe if I get to teach motivated and appreciative students this time, I will have more confidence and initiative to become better. If I get the teaching position in Japan, I will not only have a job but will also fulfill my dream of living abroad. If I don’t, maybe it is what God has planned for me.

Maybe leaving my previous job is not the best decision I’ve made so far but I am quite sure that it is something that I won’t regret doing. We should never deprive ourselves the happiness that we think we deserve. It is not so bad to choose happiness for once.

Perspective

​The past few weeks for me have been tough. I am always occupied with random thoughts and I cannot even focus on what’s ahead of me. I hate my job, I doubt myself a lot, and the list will be endless. I have this strong desire to escape from my life and start a new one. There are times when I find myself crying and hoping for a new environment. Sometimes I wish that I am a different person.

It is difficult growing up without knowing what you want in life. It is not true that we can be anyone we want to be, but it is true that we can be anyone we pursue to be. In my case, I pursue teaching and I became a teacher. But do I really want it? Yes, I might say that I hate my job, but I don’t entirely hate everything about it. Whenever I try to look back, there were times when I was in cloud nine. There were times when I felt happy with my job. But are those reasons enough for me to stay? No. More than anything else, I think I deserve better. When it comes to compensation I could not complain anymore, because I am well-paid. It is just that sometimes money won’t make you stay. The whole system suffocates me and now is the time to breathe. 

Being lost on track for the past few weeks made me realize that I don’t hate teaching at all. Maybe I abhor the education system that we have. I won’t give up on teaching, but this is not the place where I can be at my best. So I must leave.