We humans love to do stuff, but we do them for a specific reason. What we do and how we do it depends on the “why”, Why?
They say that you have to know your why, your “why” is going to push you through the hard times. When you feel like quitting and giving up you have to remember why you’re doing what you’re doing.
So why am I still up awake while half the world on my side is sleeping? Let me share with you my “Why”.
BECAUSE I WANT TO HONOR GOD WITH MY LIFE
I’ve accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. He’d shown me that someone can love me so much even when I don’t see myself as a loveable person. He believed in me even when I didn’t believe in myself anymore. He showed me that I was worth it. That in Him I can be the best that I can be.
He lovingly guided me in putting up a company called Potatocodes Inc. a 100% Filipino owned tech company and he is our CEO.
The first reason is that God gave me this work to do. I will not waste the precious time He’s given me on earth, I will use my talents and cultivate it to help others and spread His good news. The good news is that no matter what you’ve done, where you are right now in life Jesus loves you!
Through Him I can be the best programmer I can be. That’s a fact! I don’t care if you were a drug addict, you can excel in anything you want! Be a master carrot-cake-chef! Through God you can be the best you can be!
PARA SA AKING BAYAN
I grew up in the Philippines; most of my countrymen see themselves as the hero of their own story. From the Taho vendors, cheerful jeepney drivers to the kids jumping of the bridge towards the flowing river, you would see the sparkle in their eyes. You can see everyone living their own legend. Everyone is the main character.
I’ve seen ordinary people work hard day and night like living heroes to provide for their families or reach their dreams. I’ve seen my countrymen and their potential for greatness.
I love my country but with all the hate going on around us, everyone seems stuck at some point. We don’t seem to know where to direct all that passion and potential that God had given us. I’ve seen my people come up with brilliant ideas and achieve wonderful and amazing things. Why then? Why can’t we somehow rise as a nation?
I guess that’s because we all look to someone else for the answer. We wait for them first to fix their stuff first before we fix ours… I remember how my parents reacted when the condominium committee ordered everyone to utilize one parking spot only. My tatay and nanay would say “Sila muna!” (I imagine everyone else saying the same ) In the end nothing was improved.
I’m sure someone else is slaving away studying medicine trying to find the cure for cancer, or that young scientist trying to find alternative sources of energy. I believe we can do this! If I can push on and be amazing at what I do, if I don’t give up, then I give everyone the freedom to do the same, everyone would realize that it’s just a matter of pushing forward.
Like everyone else, I want to see this country changed but I want to start with myself. I’m just going to give my all in creating websites, then mobile apps and later on drone programs and virtual reality research! I want to show my countrymen that we can be amazing in something. We can be the best if we put our hearts into it.
PEACE AND LOVE
Over the years my family grew.
From my original family,
to brothers and sisters I’ve met along the way,
friends, random strangers, interns, classmates and clients all the people I’ve loved.
They believed in me and shared precious moments that made me who I am today. I just want to give my best for those wonderful times. The happy moments with them, I believe, is worth fighting for. I want to be able to provide for them the best version of me.
This is why I’m slaving away in front of my trusty Intel-core-four-year-old but still code-worthy i3 powered desktop. I’d like to stop watching others and what they would do. I’ll just do the job that God gave me and for now I guess that’s giving all my heart and strength to creating wonderful websites (and writing cheesy articles like this one).
I know I have a long way to go, I still have truckloads to learn, and it’s not going to be easy, It’s going to be waaay friggin haaard! But because I know why I’m coding websites at 3:00am in the morning then I will face that sunrise sipping coffee and eating code.
And that is why! How about you, why are you doing what you’re doing? I’d love to hear your why in the comments section below!
Some people find reading books boring. When I was younger (di pa naman ako matanda) I really didn’t like to read. I thought it was boring. Something only nerds will understand. Then, the long vacation of summer 2014 came. There was a 3-month vacation because of the academic calendar shift.
One day, I saw my mom’s books and tried to read it. To my surprise it was good. I really got into it. The first book I read was Beyond Talent by John Maxwell. It talks about molding your character and doing your best to reach your ceiling. After that, reading has become my hobby. I read books every time I get a chance.
There are a lot of lessons I learned from the books I read. As of now, here are the things I learned:
1. Encourage and inspire one another
“Everyone has the potential to become an encourager. You don’t have to be rich. You don’t have to be a genius. You don’t have to have it all together. All you have to do is care about people and initiate.” – John Maxwell
Encouraging and inspiring people is a noble job. You don’t get paid for it. You do it because you know it can change the world. Changing people’s perspective is not that easy. Turning those negative thoughts into positive ones is a hard task to do. Also, you need to walk the talk. You can’t expect someone to believe in you if he doesn’t see it in you. To be a person of influence, you must be a person of integrity. Let us also not forget that a motivated and inspired person performs at a high level. Imagine if all of us have the right mindset, we can really change the world. Making people motivated will result into a better Earth.
2. See things beyond our capabilities
“You were designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness.” –Zig Ziglar
I’m pretty sure that no matter how good you are, you still think that there are a lot of things beyond your capabilities. We tend to limit ourselves when things get tough. Eric Thomas once said, “When you want to succeed as bad you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful”. Have you tried pushing yourself to the limit? If not, then burn that midnight oil! Greatness is the product of passion, patience, toughness, and belief. You can do anything if you believe and work hard for it.
3. You are unique and you are God’s masterpiece
“Constantly remind yourself that you are a masterpiece and you have a role to play in creating the overall masterpiece God intended the world to be” – Marianne Mencias
We are all different from one another. That guy who smokes the cigarette in the street is different from you. The cashier at SM is also different from you. We each have our own unique set of skills. Just like in basketball, you can’t create a team with five point guards on your starting lineup. You will need a point guard, a shooting guard, a small forward, a power forward, and the center. All of our difference will cover up each other’s weakness. The world is created like a puzzle, and we are the pieces to create that masterpiece.
4. “Imagination mo ang limit”
“If you can dream it, then you can achieve it. You will get all you want in life if you help enough other people get what they want.” –Zig Ziglar
I believe that you need to have a dream for yourself. You have dream to be a successful person in the future. God gave us those visions for us to work on it. Dream high, it won’t hurt you. Use your imagination to envision greatness in you. Use it as your motivation, your inspiration and the engine that will drive you to peak performance. NBA Superstar Kyrie Irving, as a kid once dreamed playing in the NBA. Now look at him, he’s not just your average basketball player, he became one of the best point guard in the league. See how a dream could turn into a reality? Don’t limit your dream, as the old saying goes “Imagination mo ang limit!”.
5. There is always a potential for us to be great
“Your potential is really up to you. It doesn’t matter what others might think. It doesn’t matter where you came from. It doesn’t even matter what you might have believed about yourself at a previous time. It’s about what lies within you and whether you can bring it.”
– John Maxwell
Look at the mirror: Do you see that guy to be a world-changer? If not, then you’re wrong. Every one of us has the talent to inspire, lead and create change in society. More than your known skills, there is still something yet to discover within us that could be a useful tool to achieve the best life. Whether you come from a poor family or might have been sick for a long time there is still something great inside you. Maybe you don’t know yet what is it but I believe you have what it takes to be the best version of you. Remember what I said in the first part, you are God’s masterpiece!
6. Highly favored and blessed!
“Start your day with faith and expectancy, and then go out anticipating good things. Expect circumstances to change in your favor. Expect people to go out their way to help you. Expect to be at the right place at the right time.”- Joel Osteen
From the moment you wake up, what do you anticipate? Is it having a bad day with bad weather and a bad day at the school or office? Or is it having a “better than good” day filled with joy, fulfillment and love? If you think about the former, then it’s time for you to change that attitude. Expect things to go on your favor, our thoughts are like magnets. Whatever we anticipate, it might happen. Have you seen a successful person who thinks of himself as a weak guy that can’t do anything? Of course those guys look forward to a great days. So let’s all put our faith in the Lord for He will do great things for us.
“Saan ka papasok ng OJT pre? Ayos ba diyan sa OJT mo? Haha” Those were the everyday messages in my Facebook account before I started my internship. It was already June 8, which is the official start date for internship when I found the company I will work at. I never looked for a company that will accept me as an intern. But God gave me that opportunity to me to work at Potatocodes.
I’m not really good technically in terms of programming and coding – all of my friends know that. Honestly I don’t even like it. It makes me puke every time I see someone coding. Seeing my co-interns coding makes it even worse. I have no idea what they are doing, when there is a task, I always ask them until I produce something. It was so hard and I could not imagine doing it every day for the rest of my life. I’m like Kokey here on Earth. At a different dimension that I will never understand.
Days have passed. Tasks keep filling up, like raindrops pouring over me. I did not know that those raindrops were actually blessings from the sky.
“The Lord will fight for you, you need to be still.” Exodus 14:14
Those tasks led me to question myself and ask God for answers.
Every morning I would go to office early. Work starts at 8am, and I would be there around 6:30am (naks, earlybird). As I would wait for my co-interns and leader, I would read a lot books about life, passion, purpose. I always asked myself ”Ano bang gusto kong gawin ko sa buhay ko?” These books helped me find signs about what would I like to do with my future.
One day, my mentor asked me “Nageenjoy ka ba sa ginagawa mo?” I told him “Di po masyado, para po kasing iba ung gusto kong gawin sa buhay”. After that conversation, he supported me as an individual and he put me in a place where I would find what I wanted and would be able to grow professionally. I tried different things- from coding to management and marketing, and even writing articles here at Ideastalk.
I realized that in order for us to know what we really like we must try different things. Sometimes God will give us duties that we don’t like, and for a while we’re down and anxious but as he says in 1 Peter 5:7 “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” God will never leave us. He is always there to guide us.
Slowly, I started to enjoy my internship. Day after day, I started to feel the rush of excitement as I faced new challenges.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:8-9
At first I thought I was the worst one on our team. The one who wouldn’t have a good future. The one who will never succeed. But I was wrong. All of us have our own talents, passions, and own destiny. For God’s ways are better than our ways. His plan for us is better than our plan. And now, I’m starting to find the joy that I really want for me to continue my career.
Life gives us options. Do you want to be satisfied? Or do you want a life of regrets? It is up to us. If we choose to be satisfied, then we should do what we love to do. This will set us on the path to succeed. If you like a life of full of regrets (I guess no one will choose this) then do those things that you don’t like and it will kill you slowly. Benjamin Franklin once said,
“Some people die at 25 and aren’t buried until 75”.
Being happy is a choice. Honor God in everything that you do, and success will find its way.
Do you see yourself as a successful person? Can you imagine that the weakest guy in your class could be the next Manny Pacquiao of our generation? Have you ever imagined living a life full of hope and love? Well, don’t limit yourself to reach your potential. Each one of us has the capacity to change the world but first we must change ourselves, beginning with the way we think.
“Your potential is really up to you.” Says John Maxwell. “It doesn’t matter what others might think. It doesn’t matter where you came from. It doesn’t even matter what you might have believed about yourself at a previous time in your life. It’s about what lies within you and whether you can bring it out” Whatever happened to you in the past don’t let it dictate your future, use it as a fuel to ignite the fire within you.
Earlier this morning, my friend was bragging about his grades to me. I found it weird because he showed me his grade for his summer class. I teased him and told him that he is a Dean’s Lister because he got a semestral average of 1.393. After that conversation, I was struck by his all-out optimism. Yes, it’s true that he failed that subject during the last semester that’s why he took it this summer but he never let his past failure be the limitations of his potential, instead he did his best.
There are a lot of people in this world that will encourage you. Maybe it’s your family, friends, or even girlfriend (kung meron man peace . ) But one thing is for sure, no matter how many times they tell you “kaya mo yan”, “sus, basic lang yan eh”, “stay strong idol”, it will always be on YOU. If you believe that you can, you will! Lack of belief will hinder your talent and potential to grow. Belief in yourself will activate the talent in you. It’s the law of attraction. Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve.
Don’t let your current circumstance destroy you, you can always change your attitude about it. Stuck in the traffic? Use it as a time to appreciate how beautiful our country is. Getting sweaty because of the weather? Use it to burn your fats! You can always change your perspective about life. God gave us talents, different talents. The world is like a puzzle. Maybe your talent is the missing piece to make this world better. Step up and rise to the challenge maybe one day you’ll be next President of the Philippines. Remember, it’s impossible to grow without changing.
On my way home one late afternoon, I was riding the MRT, when I saw an older woman sobbing in the corner. We passed through one station… then another, and another, and she still wasn’t stopping. I was shocked that she couldn’t stop crying. I kept stealing glances at her, but she was too distressed to notice. I could see her face was wet with tears, and I could hear her sobbing. She kept gasping for breath, as if she was drowning in her own agony. We were both lost in our thoughts. Her sobbing visibly made the other passengers uncomfortable. I could see them shifting and squirming, avoiding eye contact with the women and pretending that she wasn’t there – that she wasn’t crying. For everyone else this was just another commute home from work.
When a baby cries in public, it’s not a big deal to anyone because babies cry all the time. That is normal. But when adults cry, why does it seem so embarrassing – shameful even? I myself have shed some tears while in public, but I have to admit that it makes me feel so embarrassed when it happens to me. Aside from my troubles, I wonder what people are thinking of me. Are they judging me? Would they rather not see me?
As a college student far away far home, I find that every day is filled with new experiences and stories. Isn’t that what everyone’s life is like? We see old friends, laugh over TV shows, and suffer heartbreaks and loss. Our days are filled with many different emotions – highs and lows, good and bad. Yet in public, we keep quiet. People frown and scowl when someone is talking too loudly. It’s considered normal not to show emotion when we’re around others.
That woman crying on the train made the other passengers uncomfortable because of her sadness, but we need to understand that she must cry sometimes. We would simply prefer that she didn’t cry around us. It is not that we don’t have to accept people crying in public, but what we can ask is why seeing someone show emotion unsettles and upsets us. What would it cost for us to reach out and break that wall that divides us? Maybe we’re too shy. Maybe we don’t know how to help. Maybe we are scared to be judged.
But aren’t we all human beings? We all experience things. We all feel things. And at the end of the day, it should be okay to just be a person – to feel sad and to feel weak, to be happy and to be strong not just in the privacy of our inner lives, but in public as well. We need other people. We need those who feel the same way and even those who don’t. The philosopher, Aristotle, said, “Man is by nature a social animal.” Because at the end of it all, the one thing that makes us fully human is the other person across us.
“The root of joy is gratefulness…It is not joy that makes us grateful; it is gratitude that makes us joyful.” – David Steindl-Rast
Each and every one of us go about our lives day in and day out, seeking the things that we think can make us happy. We watch movies, go on food trips, hang out with friends, and work to earn money – all in pursuit of the ever elusive thing that we call happiness. But the secret to happiness is much simpler than all of that. The Benedictine monk, David Steindl-Rast, captures this succinctly and truthfully in his Ted Talk when he talks about the relationship between happiness and gratitude.
He says, “Gratefulness is the key to a happy life that we hold in our hands, because if we are not grateful, then no matter how much we have we will not be happy – because we will always want to have something else or something more.”
This may seem like a simple idea, but it is radical at its core, because we tend to think that gratitude follows from being happy. If I have money, food, or friends then all these things will make me happy. So I can only be grateful once I have the things that I am happy about. But that is putting the cart before the horse. In order to be truly happy, we first need to learn how to be grateful.
There’s a simple practice that takes a little of your time and basically no money that can help with this. It’s called the five-minute journal. You can check out the website at http://www.fiveminutejournal.com/, but all you really need to get started are a pen, a piece of paper.
Every morning, once you wake up and get out of bed – the first thing you do is grab your pen and paper and write:
(a) Three things that you are grateful for;
(b) Three things that would make today great, and;
(c) Two affirmations about yourself.
Every night at the end of the day, take your pen and paper again and write:
(a) Three amazing things that happened today; and
(b) How could today have been better?
This habit allows you step back, even just for five minutes. It will help you to be grateful for the things you have experienced throughout your day, who you are as a person and why you are amazing. Moreover, it allows you to look forward – to continue to grow and improve. It strikes that balance between accepting yourself and striving greater and bigger things. Get into the habit of being grateful, and see how it can make you a happier and healthier person.