The Death of ‘Pwede Na’ and ‘Gaya-Gaya’

Screenshot 2014-07-09 15.32.46The Entrepreneurial and Artistic Landscape of Manila in 2014


“Pwede na” is a Filipino phrase commonly used to denote mediocrity or a mentality that bare minimum compliance is enough.

“Gaya-gaya” is a Filipino word defined as a copycat or someone with no originality.


My father always told me there were three kinds of people in this world:

People who make things happen

People who watch things happen

And worst of all, people who don’t even know what happened

In my twenty-three years of existence, I’ve spent a huge chunk of it living in passivity and escapism. Unfortunately, I was what my father dreaded — I was the worst of the three. The difficult part was being reminded every moment possible that I used to be the best of the three.

But you see the world got to me and I cowered in fear — I refused to stand out in fear of disappointing or not living up to my potential.

Only up until I flunked out of law school did I realize that I had no idea what to do with my life nor did I have an introspective compass or a heart song to sing or lead the way. Reality finally hit and I realized I was extremely off tangent. What big ambition and drive I thought I had reserved for ’that moment’ was nowhere in sight and my tank was running on empty. My ultimate goal and dream of becoming one of Time 100’s Most Influential People was a pipe dream and I had no idea how to get from Point A to Point B.

Don’t get too far ahead of yourself, this isn’t a success story (at least not yet).

This is a story of progress and an op-ed combined — taking it one step at a time in the ripest age possible for innovation and creativity in a city prime for reinvention.


Manila, in my opinion, at 2014 has become a lucrative economic hub for entrepreneurs and artists. It is evident in the large-scale patronage and support of new concepts and out of the box ideas. I mean, look at our food, travel and lifestyle industry at present — we’ve come a long way from copying Big Brother and we’ve started to become original, quirky and unique with what we have to offer our fellow Filipinos like The Henryhotel, Manila Pop-up, Outbreak Manila, The Girl + The Bull, and the multitudes of cafe concepts spread all over opening left and right.

I’d want to acknowledge the fact that social media has played a huge part in this — its presence has wildly upgraded the ordinary Filipino standards to an international and global scale. This has had good and bad effects; good in a sense that it opened up a whole lot more doors for consumers and entrepreneurs; and bad in a sense that this has forced sub par and ‘pwede na’ competition to either catch up or get left behind.

Gone are the days when we compared what we had to our neighbor next door or what ‘pasalubong’ we received from our Tito’s and Tita’s abroad. Remember when Krispy Kreme used to arrive stale and cold from the plane ride home? Now, we’re comparing ourselves to neighboring countries: a neighbor’s customized car in Germany; a neighbor’s film in New Mexico; or a new neighbor’s app in Silicon Valley. In this Information Age, we know everything we need to know by the second — heck, even when we don’t want to know anymore.

The points of comparison between international and local offerings aren’t as vast as they used to be. I remember wanting to travel to the US because they had H&M, Forever 21, and a whole lot of other brands that are here in the Philippines now. But shopping abroad is no longer prestigious because of the growth of online shopping and local availability. Even the clamor for well-made films is gaining traction, everyone’s starting to finally see what a joke the Metro Manila Film Festival is and it has paved a way for films like On The Job or Ang Nawawala to take flight.

We’ve started to close the gap and created a new personality for ourselves all on our own by drawing inspiration from the fusion of international and Filipino influences resulting in local application like Rappler for news, OLX for purchases, Our Awesome Planet, The Fat Kid Inside and Pepper.ph for travel and food, or Spot.ph for Pinoy pop culture and a collection of who, what, when, and where.

We no longer find comfort in depending on other countries, we now find comfort in quality products and services with a Pinoy twist. We want in on the action, we need our own versions now. The preference is changing and it’s changing to our advantage.

Now, what’s my point here?

This opportunity and this period of transition is something I desperately beg everyone in this country to take advantage of.

What I ask of you to consider is for you to pursue and work on your God-given talents and do what you love and figure out what it is you’re meant to really be doing.

Why? Because we no longer have to move to another country nor line up and beg for a cookie-cutter job at the steel gates of corporate giants. We no longer have to pay an expensive amount of money to learn or educate ourselves with the skills we want to acquire. We can make things happen on our own in our turf (and sometimes in our very own homes from our very own rooms) and reciprocally contribute to our country and ourselves.

Today, we hold the key to our own successes. Not the academic board, not the big bosses, not the government officials (okay, maybe the government officials), nor the corporations or professions we hold on to for dear life for fear of instability and uncertainty.

Now linger on that for a second and actually believe it. Isn’t that just amazing?

I’m not asking everyone to up and quit their day jobs and start gallivanting in the streets parading and executing their brilliant idea claiming they’re the Steve Jobs of the Philippines. This isn’t my call to action. If you do, the risk is smaller but the chances of you failing are still pretty high, but by all means if you have the balls and the right idea for it. March on! I’m about to do the same myself.

My point is, light the fire and start working on the ideas you tucked away in your Plan B notebook and build the skills you need to execute it because soon enough, the market will be much much more conducive for whatever niche product or idea you have in mind. It’s all about timing and opportunity.

As of the moment, I believe we’re at 40% progress in changing the landscape of jobs and businesses in the Philippines. Innovation has long started but its arduous journey has only trickled down to widespread growth maybe two or three years ago. But with the support of the education sector and various communities for creative and entrepreneurial pursuits, it seems like a good time to start.

We’re not at par with the scale of diversity and opportunity in the concrete jungle where dreams are made of, but we’re at the early stages of huge possibilities and potential backed up with open-minded support from the consumers who are now the determining factor of profitability and demand. They’re sick of factory-made concepts and their eyes will glaze over another cliche product. We’re at a point where it’s the consumers who control the product and not the other way around. The new consumer craves for personalization, diversity, flexibility, convenience and applicability to their everyday lives.

Guys, we’re starting to grow up and think for ourselves!

It’ll take years before we eventually get to that New York-level but I want you to know that it’s possible to start now. I mean, isn’t that a big relief? That your dreams aren’t as far-fetched as you thought they were? That it’s within reach or an arm length away?

The Filipino dream of every Gen-X parent for their child is to send them to an exclusive school, attend college in one of the Big Three and depending on your household you either end up on the path of a doctor, a lawyer, an engineer, a nurse, an accountant or anything that requires a professional license to practice. You either end up working here or working abroad in New York or wherever your more successful relative is. Like my mother said, these are the jobs that will save you if you were a Jew and lived in the Nazi occupation, but that’s besides the point.

This is the path to success. Correction, this was the path to success. We can’t blame our parents though, they’re just teaching us the only way they know how. Like Austin Kleon said, the writer of Steal Like An Artist, “All advice is autobiographical, they’re really just talking to themselves in the past.”

But by all means, if this is your passion in life, I salute you — but don’t stop reading because this applies to you too. These days everyone’s a multi-hyphenate. Why? Because a college degree doesn’t guarantee anything anymore, the existence of a lawyer-horticulturist; a host-singer-actress, a doctor-food blogger, a restaurateur-social media manager changes everything.

If there’s a job offering or a scholarship grant, a cookie cutter lawyer with above average grades will lose that offer to a lawyer with average grades specializing in environmental law who volunteers for Teach For The Philippines and is a social entrepreneur that focuses on renewable energy. You’re not limited to one occupation or one skill, not anymore. If you want to get ahead, it’s your combination of skills, hobbies and interest that makes you valuable commodity.

This age has brought about a new breed of workers and innovators. This is the generation that grew up instinctively knowing what quality really means, an upgraded five senses if you will of what is good and bad. We know for a fact that the ‘pwede na’ mentality will not cut it. This generation values work that they love over work that they need, passion over money, and purpose over stability. We know that it’s about results and not about intentions.

I believe in this generation’s idealism, boldness, creativity, and ingenuity. I’ve discovered and witnessed it permeate and manifest into results. A lot of the people, businesses, initiatives and organizations I look up to and admire right now are those who found their heart song and tenaciously set out and fought for it. Like A-ha Learning Center, Muni, Rags2Riches, Wanderrgirl, Mango Red, Rabbit Hole Creatives, The Better Story Project, Trade School Manila, Human Nature, Team Manila, The Circle Hostel, Flotsam and Jetsam Hostel, Co.Lab and Theo and Philo. Honestly, the list could go on and on.

What sets people apart these days is the unique set of skills you possess, the side projects you work on, the different communities you are part of, and what you can offer to the world and the community you live in.

As a late bloomer, my mission as of the moment is to find these people and to learn from them. Passionate responsible doers who believe that they can make a change and those with a sense of urgency to know that there is not a second of time to waste.

I’m betting everything on this. Manila will reign sooner than you think. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I highly doubt that.

But hey, I’m just me, a casual observer honing her skills, looking for the right people to execute her dream project with, and waiting for the right opportunity to pounce.

But I guess, my real hidden agenda here is.. is there anyone out there who agrees? Because as I bloomed into this mindset a little later than I would’ve wanted, I find myself crawling in the dark for people who think so too.

Hope I’m not alone in this.

Now, let’s make something happen.

The Charmer and The Choker

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To write is to be heard.

That’s why I do it. That’s why I need to. I can’t possibly imagine how I would’ve managed to get through life without writing.

Although I’m not sure who’s going to hear me unless I write outside the confines of my Evernote application. But then again, it’s the mere idea of laying down your thoughts. Whether it be in type, in ink and paper, in the form a video or a painting, it is more than enough to keep one sane and breathing.

But of the multitude of things I write, only a few ever really make the cut to be seen in the public eye.

Feeling ko naman ang laki ng following ko diba? Haha.


The Charmer and The Choker

I believe there is a need nestled deep and fundamentally ingrained in our core that begs to be heard, for our opinions to be considered, for our thoughts to be listened to, for our ideas to manifest right before our eyes. 

If there’s one thing I envy, it’s the people who don’t have to shout to be heard. They can just prettily whisper into the wind and command the attention of a million people just like that. In the form of talent, grit, looks, money, wit and all other forms of power and influence.

Just like the quote from the book Beautiful Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk: “Beauty is power the same way money is power the same way a gun is power.”

If there’s one thing I admit I don’t have, it’s charm. This is why I find myself magnetized to charming people. 

All the other members of my family are naturally charming, even my circle of friends all have their own distinct charm. What I admire most is the fact that they all have a certain unapologetic quality that reels people in, it’s what makes them one of a kind. It’s what makes their whispers parallel to my screams. 

I wouldn’t say I don’t have the capacity to draw people in, I have experimented with it and tinkered with what I presume I’m capable of in the last couple of years. With every passing fancy ranging from: starting a blog, submitting articles anonymously, writing short stories, scribbling poems, trying to be witty on social media or capturing attention physically, soulfully, conversationally, and sometimes even quirkily. I’ve had a couple of hits and misses here and there but I’ve never quite captured it and controlled it the way I would want to.

If people do end up reading this, I think most of them would be shocked, some might flinch, while some would probably already see what it is I’m talking about. 

But in reality, there are days when I would feel like the world was at my feet, when I could summon, convince, sell, persuade, and seduce anybody with an idea without even lifting a finger. When I can walk into a room and command everyone’s attention with a singular stare. But then are days when I choke, when I can’t even bring myself to engage in a minute’s worth of small talk, when I can’t even bear to come up with one paragraph to introduce myself, and end up disappearing into the background completely.

The annoying and frustrating bit of it is the fact that I never know if I’m going to choke. It just happens when it happens and I can’t seem to recover.

This is the source of my anxiety. 

Create: Trust Me

“Trust me.”

I looked at him with a dead stare and a fake smile and I obediently walked behind him with my head down low, twirling my pig tails with my fingers. Dragging my already big ass feet, I intently exhaled as loudly as possible with every step while I tried to catch up with his huge strides. He was used to dragging my little limp hand. Yet despite my not-so-subtle body language, he never listened nor did he allow me to back out of whatever it is he wanted me to try. 

That was always the promise. 

Just give it one shot. Just give it a try. Trust me, it’ll be worth it. 

If you don’t like it, then you don’t like it, but if you do end up liking it, then you discover something new. Give it a chance.

That was always his line, with every new lesson, opportunity, challenge, or even a roller coaster ride, new dish, walking up to a stranger and sometimes as simple as trying to see who was fast enough to hoist oneself up on a ledge. 

If there’s one thing I want to thank him for today, out of the countless everyday lessons you teach me, today I thank you for teaching me how to to live curiously and to make an effort to see everything with a new pair of eyes. Thank you for not listening to that stubborn little girl and for continuously pushing me to be better everyday. 

To the man who caught my every fall and dusted my knees off so quick that I didn’t even notice the fall, you couldn’t have done any better even if you wanted to. 

Now, as I try to conquer the world with my own two feet, I’m asking you..

“Trust me.” 

I love you, Dad. 

Happy Father’s Day!

 

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Create: I Told You So

(Mother’s Day Post)

“I told you so.”

Growing up as a know-it-all with an ego complex, I hated hearing these words. I would cringe and forcefully swallow my pride and hide it a meek smile. And the person I heard this the most from was my mother.

When I randomly moved schools at Grade 5

When I cut my hair at a barber shop

When I thought my fashion choices were cool

When I chased after a boy

When I cared what other people thought

When I was too scared to take a leap

And most especially when I was too scared to fall

And that resounding “I told you so” whether conveyed with a look, a smirk, a whisper, or an outright remark, was never absent.

But as I grew older, those opinions that I used to disdain evolved into something I craved, because if there’s something I struggled with and eventually embraced to accept, was that mothers will and almost always know best.

But for one significant moment this year, the tables have turned and there existed one big fat “I told you so” that I so longingly and proudly beared. It was that moment of recovery from a life-threatening period of pain, doubt, and confusion. I bullshit you not, throughout that time I never worried for a second. And in those moments of distress and almost giving up I would repeatedly assure her that everything was going to be okay.

A couple of weeks after, when she would ask about what happened and reflect on the miraculous recovery that it was, back in our house wearing her favorite nightdress, eating her favorite desserts, I loved and never failed to remind her over and over again..

“I told you so.”

Happy Mother’s Day, Mommy!

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Journal: On Why You Don’t Have What You Want

Screenshot 2014-04-18 19.30.37

This is for the ones who are constantly searching for answers, to the ones who don’t understand why they don’t have what they want, to those who can say that I’ve done everything I could, to those who can’t wait anymore.

Don’t rush. 

When it comes to the pursuit of anything, be patient. Wait.

You know why you don’t have what you want yet? Because you’re not ready for it. The truth of the matter is you wouldn’t know what to do with it nor know how to handle it. Think about it. Think about the moments in your life where you got what you wanted prematurely. When you rushed into something you knew weren’t ready for.

Sure, one can argue that rushing into what you’re not ready for is also a blessing in disguise. You’re forced to leave your comfort zone and through navigating your way through it do you gain experiences you never would’ve if you didn’t hit the ground running. 

But that’s a completely different situation, this is isn’t the kind of pursuit I’m talking about here.

Truly great things take time.

Whether it be a relationship, an opportunity, a business, a job, a big break, or whatever it is you’re pursuing.

Stop complaining about waiting and do something about it instead.

Use that time to learn what you have to, use that time to prepare for what you want, because one day you’ll get what it is you’re pursuing. 

You’ll get it when you’re ready for it. When you’ve gone through what you have to so that when you get it, you know how to keep it.

Trust that the difficulties and the hurdles are there for a reason, they’re not there to keep you from what you want but to make sure that only those who really want it get it, and get to keep it.

Create: Project #9 Turning Japanese

My family and I took an 8-day trip to Japan last October 2013.

I’ve been spending a lot of time editing with a lot of long overdue requested family videos and clips we’ve shot over the years.

I’ve been having a lot of fun with this and I really don’t seem to notice the hours go by (which I love).

Let’s see how far I get with this.

Please watch, enjoy and comment if you feel like it.

Journal: Happy Days Are Here Again a.k.a. Confession Time

photo 2

My contribution to the selfie city of the world

I don’t know what it is exactly, but the feeling is incredible. Clear the way people! Out of the way! I’m out of the slump!

We all have our shares of highs and lows but it’s the choice to rise above it is what counts. I’m starting to sound like a cliche greeting card or pick-me-up quote right now, but cliches are cliches for a reason.

Everyday I’m inching myself closer and closer to the “just do it” and “shipping” mentality (look it up). A little less analyzing, a little less considering, a little less doubting. I replaced that with a whole lot of why-nots, who-cares, and fuck-its. (Fuck-it’s? Lame.)

Here’s a big confession: I have this annoying thing where I don’t like people seeing me try. Failing was a given but trying was different.

What? Let me explain.

Growing up, I’ve always had beginner’s luck on my side in almost anything I’ve tried (before you start rolling your eyes at me and sarcastically commenting, read on). But because of beginner’s luck, I’ve always felt the need to succeed at anything I do on the first try, any chance of that not happening I will nonchalantly pass up on it. 

I’ve never had nitty gritty challenges and behind-the-scenes stories. I prided myself on being an open book with nothing to hide. I just succeeded effortlessly and did it with ease, poise, and arrogantly at that a.k.a. humblebrag (Community fans, you know what it is). Any mistakes, failures and signs of trying I immediately hid or tried to cover it up.

I never had rough drafts or rough edits. If it doesn’t work on the first try, it’s not something worth trying. I gave up immediately and didn’t think it was worth the effort (That is just messed up, woman).

The only failures I’ve ever publicly acknowledged is the fact that I am occasionally a klutz. Fortunately, I’ve found a way to laugh at myself, even laughing louder than my friends even.

But anything else? Taboo. Unheard of. Unspoken of. Toned down or simply dismissed. I made up stories, twisted endings and created circumstances to always come out on top. Prideful and egotistic at its peak. All the more making me vulnerable to falling and failing. A lot.

Which is why I never really formally joined contests or took up real challenges, because then they’d have to see me try. That effortlessness was put to waste, over and over again. I’ve heard the word sayang too many times to count. The talent was always there, ready to be honed, but I was too afraid to show any signs trying and failing with the things that did count. 

I was terrified.

And so I ended up here, with a lot of skeletons hidden in my closet and a looming shadow cast by the mountain of stories, mistakes, failures and rejections I’ve swept under the rug. A jack of all traits and a master of none at 23 y/o. Missed opportunities and untapped potential. That’s why keeping track of what to tell, what not to tell, and what version of the story I’ve told to certain people gets really tiring and has eventually become a subconscious chore. 

Sure, I’ve developed the great skill of evasive maneuvers, imaginative and elaborate storytelling, some mild acting and pretending, but who was I kidding? It was a road leading to self-sabotage that was only going to bite me back in the ass eventually. And it already has, repeatedly. It still is.

Only when I saw it play out, or when I saw parts of myself in other people; the way they try to make up for who they are, what they know and what they have. The way they hang on to little insignificant things, like compliments for example. Clinging and lingering on such words as the equivalent of the validation they’ve been looking for all night.

That “Ok, I’m good. I’ve said what I had to. I’m right. This is the image I project. The image I want to project. I’ve confirmed it. I’ve proved it.”

Seeing it outside of myself is very different. I witnessed how sad, lame, and pathetic it really is from another perspective. Even giving them mental flak and judging them harshly for not being secure enough or strong enough on their own, when in reality I go through the same thing everyday. I built my own trap. I built an image I was forced to keep up and maintain. 

By parading around with a false sense of security, I realized that although yes I’ve proved it to everyone else that I was unattainable, intimidating, unreachable, semi-successful, without blemish or fault, balanced on an air of perfect (you can hit me with stones later, kapal ng mukha ko, I know), I’ve become less human. Less vulnerable, less relatable and less of a person. A robot.

Except I haven’t fooled two sets of eyes whose perspective matters the most: God’s and mine.

I trapped my natural self in. My instincts, my ideas, my gut feelings, and my inner compass. In fear of being weird, not being accepted, shunned, laughed at, or simply dismissed. I muffled and suppressed the voice of the artist in me. To the point where I couldn’t summon the voice back on command anymore. I simply followed the dogma, the rat race. I categorized and boxed myself into whatever it is the world told me I was.

This is a very unhealthy way to live, think and act. It’s self-destructive.

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What Happens When I Study

(A video I made when I was a freshman law student. A day in the life of an ALS law student. No wonder I’m not in law school anymore. Throwback to my video editing skills as well)

One of the biggest failures I have not been proud to admit and even created stories about was my story at Ateneo Law School. I told people that I chose to leave, that I simply chose a different path, I chose to work, or to find myself.

But in reality *big breath* I flunked out.

Simply because of one subject.

In fact, a small part of it still haunts me to this day, and it always will. I failed because I got distracted by the wrong things and the wrong people. I relied too much on luck and sheer effortlessness. I didn’t put in the work I needed to. By far the stupidest reason ever.
For a time, I thought I wasn’t smart enough, and for a while I even convinced myself of it. But then I realized I just made unwise and poor decisions.

I had no choice but to figure everything out. It became a necessity.

That was my wake up call, that I couldn’t live life simply coasting along from day to day, without any real effort. I was, might still be a little bit, a spoiled brat (I’m trying over here).

But looking back now, that might’ve been the best thing that has ever happened to me.

It opened my eyes completely and really ripped me out of my comfort zone.

It was like a whiplash of reality. I’ve never been so depressed and pitied but I’ve also never been so motivated and tenacious, so aware of the multitude of possibilities and paths I could take, and so hellbent on figuring out what my passion is and what it is I want to do with my life.

It was like when I was 14 y/o and I found out that I needed glasses years before. I didn’t even know what I was missing out on until I put on my frames for the first time. It was only then that I had truly realized how much I missed out on. How clear and beautiful everything was. The intricate detail and tremendous landscapes that was always a bit of a blur to me. How I could finally watch movies without squinting and finally appreciate what HD really was (and that’s when I really became a movie buff).

I couldn’t forgive myself for it for a really long time, and it resulted in a kind of bitterness that just flung me from one end to the other. A period of indulgence, to say the least that didn’t entirely help me heal.

Fortunately, I overcome it day by day.

It’s a process and I know I’ll get there. And this, this public declaration which took me almost two years to uncover, sort out, admit to myself and everyone else is a huge step.

This reminds me that I’m far from the girl I was in 2012 and I’m incredibly proud of that.

Project #7 Going Solo

(One huge milestone was when I jumped ship and tried traveling alone)

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. - 2 Timothy 1:7

It is only through my complete faith in my Father that I’ve been able to learn how to get rid of this mentality. It is only through Him did I find my infinite source of security, purpose and love, and I am grateful everyday.

Of course, I don’t mean to sound preachy but there’s also a lot of things helped me out along the way and a ton of reading and learning from other people who go through similar situations. I’ve already shared a couple of things I’ve learned in my previous posts and that won’t be the end of it I assure you, but if there’s one thing I’d like you to leave with, if you even get to the end of this post, it’s this.

No matter who you are, whatever your background is, what your experiences are, and whatever circumstance you’re in. Do me a favor, I am challenging you, just for a second, to let yourself believe that you CAN do anything you want and that you CAN be whoever you want to be. 

You are not defined by what the world tells you you are. It is up to you to define yourself to the world. That is your job. To make your mark by becoming exactly who you are the way God designed you to be.

The true source of security and fearlessness is from within.

I know it sounds old and tired, even I’ve heard this too many times. But seriously, think about it for real. Let it sink in. Let the idea take over and course through your body and your mind. Let it stick, because it is the truth.

Whatever it is you want is attainable, there are no gatekeepers in the year 2014. You live in a wondrous and booming period where creativity and uniqueness is rewarded generously. 

You just to be brave enough to work hard for it. You have to be brave enough to step up to the plate. You have to be brave enough to fail publicly. You have to be brave enough to risk it. 

Truly, the only person standing in your way is yourself. 

What an irony, right? What a shame. What a waste. And one day, in its entirety, you will realize, laugh, and wonder how you ended up buying into this “not-enough” and “not-ready” mentality.

In this day and age, we don’t need permission. No one needs permission to do anything anymore. It’s an exciting time to be in for creators, inventors, ideators, doers, and makers.

There’s a lot of great ideas out there, and a lot of them have crossed your mind I’m sure. The only thing that other people have on you is that they did it. They acted on it. They shipped it. They executed it. That’s it. That’s the only thing they have at an advantage.

All we simply have to do is act on it.

Create: Project #8 A Treehouse Afternoon

To those who don’t know yet, I’ve already left the nest and I’m now living on my own.

I cannot even begin to explain how much peace of mind, focus, and joy it has brought me.

I’m an introvert by nature and I’ve always found myself needing a place to retreat and recharge. From experimenting by staying here during weekends, a 2-day vacation within in the city away from the hustle and bustle, I’ve eventually decided to move in completely.

Plus, I’m learning SO MANY things that it is downright hilarious at times because these are things I’m supposed to already know but never paid attention to, like:

  • How to get dirt off the walls
  • How to maximize storage
  • How to cook without the condominium smelling like food (instant oatmeal and slicing fruits and vegetables don’t count, I know)
  • How to brush my hair without falling stray hair scattered all over the floor
  • How to dish wash without the sink looking like a bubble bath
  •  How to use different rags for drying, wiping, and etc.
  • - DUST BUNNIES

Yes, I also realized how much of a spoiled brat I am, which is why I’ve always wanted to live on my own. It forces me to change and to grow up.

I’m bound to discover and learn a lot more things.

Although, don’t get me wrong. I miss my family a lot, I’ve now made it a point to cook lunch for my family on Sundays  (which is why I am dubbed thee “Sunday Daughter”) and visit when I can. For some odd reason we talk more often than before.

The irony.

Journal: Frustrations

Frustrations.

The fuel of all revolutionary change. The catalyst of all that is unimaginable and all that is deemed impossible. This is the requirement, a step behind the numerous attempts and the numerous failures, this is the first step towards dreams realized.

I can feel it, I can taste it, I can smell it. It’s so.. near. Tantalizing me. Teasing me. A luscious trailer of things to come. A looming air of ripe possibilities. The promise is tangible, the potential is within grasp, the vision is spectacular, yet I am always two steps behind.

Always reaching. Always searching. Always planning. Never doing.

At the precipice of all my underlying fears and nagging doubts, I want to make the giant leap, in fact I’m desperate. But what’s holding me back? What’s this invisible force field I seem to be trapped in? I feel like I’m gasping for air, looking for an invisible off switch, crawling in the dark grasping at whatever my fist can grab first.

Why?

When it seems like there’s nothing wrong on the surface. When it doesn’t even make sense. When you’ve been racking your brain for days, weeks, months, with a dozen almost-discoveries, almost-achievements and almost-opportunities. It’s so close.. too close. It’s just downright cruel.

Why do I feel like I’m still in limbo, all I feel is the weightlessness, the uncertainty, and the mind-grappling thoughts that entrap me in endless circles.

What the fuck is that?

I’m growing impatient, weary, and bogged down by the humdrum nature of everyday routines.

I don’t feel like me. I don’t even make sense anymore. I’ve haven’t had peace of mind in a long long time. Too long.

I need it back. I need her back.

I beg of you get me out of here.

Now.

Or else.

Journal: I Fall In Love Everyday (100 Days In Love)

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Today I indulge. Today we are all bestowed the universal license to be cheesy and romantic. To proclaim and take pride in the one thing that really matters.

To love, to show love, and to celebrate what you love in all its forms, shapes and sizes.

It’s as simple as that really.

But why do we make everything so complicated?

We’ve become a generation of “it’s complicated” and “in-betweens”. It’s a cruel and terrible game really and I stopped playing a long time ago (well, not so long ago, but long enough!). But that’s not the point of this post, I’m not going to rant about relationships here, there are enough blog posts and articles about that, and frankly I’m just bored with it already.

This generation has been getting a lot of flak for being the most terrified, the most non-committed, the most sigurista, the most selfish, and the most self-absorbed. But I will tell you something else, a confession of sorts. Personally, my truth? As much as I try to cover it up with sarcasm, cynicism,  harshness, emotionless and robotic, I was never fearful of falling in love.

In fact, I fall in love everyday.

I fall in love with books. I fall in love with moments. I fall in love with music. I fall in love with people. I fall in love with movies. I fall in love with small gestures. I fall in love with other people’s passions. I fall in love with destinations. I fall in love with food. I fall in love with learning. I fall in love with the process of discovery. I fall in love with my family and my friends. I fall in love with Him.

It’s pretty reckless and tactless some might say, but I don’t see anything wrong with it. Well, other than the fact that I did mistakenly idealize and romanticize everything, which I eventually learned to manage, I’ve learned to see  the difference between fantasy and reality without my rose-colored glasses, so I think I’ve got a good grip of it already.

Personally, I try to find something to fall in love with everyday. I fall in love fast and hard and that fact alone which I found out at a very early age, made me terrified, incredibly self-aware and cautious. It’s something I’ve grown to hide and feel ashamed of every once in a while.

But you know what, why should I?

How did I end up here? Backing myself into my own corner.

Fear crippled me into hiding what I love. Experiences tainted with doubt, heartbreak, confusion, rejection, failure, and uncertainty. But I think I’ve had enough of that. Pretending to be someone you’re not and denying yourself of who you really are is the biggest mistake you could ever make.

People nowadays identify with others based on what they hate, they click because they hate the same things, they despise the same people and they have the same pet peeves, which I admittedly and still presently do. But I heard something a while back that said instead of bashing what you hate you should start sharing what you love. Isn’t that beautiful?

Who cares if you like a movie that no one else does?

Who cares if you find something you like that people don’t care for?

Who cares if you love a certain person? (Disclaimer: I say this with tact, complete caution, self-worth, and common sense, okay maybe common sense, not so much. This deserves another post entirely).

Think about it, most of the things you’re inspired to try or are interested in is because you see how much that person loved or valued it. Their passion for it is what got you hooked, not their hate for it.

I’m the type of person who would rather feel a little too much than feel a little too less, but that was never really the case. It never really showed. My intentions were always good, they were always there but it never translated into action, I always thought the intention was enough. It’s something I always knew I needed to do, but it was something I never really bothered to try, and even if I did it was always half hearted or against my will. I was always a little too scared to give a 100% in anything. I can’t recall a single moment in my life where I gave my all. 

I always thought it was a little too costly, too risky and just plain stupid. Self-righteous, egotistic and prideful at its peak. But at the same time, I realized I was denying myself greatness, I was denying myself absolute joy, and by refusing to gamble with high risks I was denying myself the ultimate possibility of the high rewards that came with it.

My best friend was sharing to me lately: if you keep doing what you’ve always done, then you’ll get the same results you’ve always had. 

“In pursuit of my best self, I’ve overridden my honest self in the process, thinking that it was okay.” – Before Sunset

If this is truly a year of change. A year of wise decisions and personal visions. I don’t want to get caught up in foolish decisions. I don’t want to be blindsided anymore.  And I think going all out for something you love, for something you’re passionate for, may it be a person, a job, a skill, a goal, whatever it may be, is the wisest decision I can make. It actually might just be the best one, because looking back, the few things that I gave part of my heart to have never failed to make me grow and learn as a person, whatever the result was, good or bad, I wouldn’t have changed a thing and I treasure it to this day.

So if there’s one thing I want to leave with you today?

Start doing what you love. Start showing what you love. Start appreciating who you love. Start now. Because what better day to start than today?

Lately, there’ s been this trend of 100 Happy Days (which I think is a terrific idea!) that’s been circulating and I actually got inspired to start a similar version of that this month.

100 Days In Love.

Every day I find something to fall in love with. 

A verse. A piece of furniture. A memory. A moment. A picturesque scenery. A quote. A realization. A lesson. A conversation.

Some of which I post, some of which I’d rather keep to myself. But every day since the 1st of February I find something to love and I hope that starting today you find something to love everyday too.

Happy Valentines Day!

“At some point, you have to make a decision. Boundaries don’t keep other people out, they fence you in. Life is messy. That’s how we’re made. So you can waste your life drawing lines… or you can live your life crossing them.

But there are some lines… that are way too dangerous to cross. Here’s what I know: If you’re willing to take the chance, the view from the other side… is spectacular.” – Grey’s Anatomy