It struck me, it is roughly a decade since I finished college. For almost a decade that I have been slaving myself working a day job and taking part in what many people call the “rat race”. I came to a realization that it has been that long, yet I feel like nothing remarkable has happened in my life. I felt like I have not aimed for nor achieved anything special that I could be proud of. In almost a decade of being a corporate employee, switching jobs and earning money, I had reached that point where I mentally asked myself: “You’ve been in this cycle for quite a while, what now?” I guess this question is one of those triggers during the “quarter-life crisis”, a phase that all of us would experience and give us the shivers and anxiety to question our value and purpose of existence.
I reached the point where it (seriously) dawned on me to think of the kind of life that I would want 5 to 10 years from now — that is me in my 30s. Priorities change, goals change. I guess that is what growing up does to you. Thus the pressure of thinking what to do to put yourself “back” on the right track and see yourself flourish and succeed. The anxiety kicks in, thinking you are wasting your time while everybody is on their way to make their lives better.
Back when I was still new to the corporate world, the only goal I have in mind is to work hard believing that doing so will get me to earn enough for all my needs and wants. It took a decade for me to realize that that belief of mine was wrong. I don’t blame myself too much about that. I grow up the trad (traditional) way. My parents subscribe to the traditional cycle of one’s life, that is, being born, grow up, go to school, finish school, work a day job, have a love life, get married, have kids and so on. For quite some time I believe and subscribe to that as well until I stumbled upon (thank you social media) some content over the Internet that gave me a light-bulb moment of “living my life my way”, “changing for the better” and “living and aiming for my own goals”.
Most of us chase success and wealth. I don’t see anything wrong with that. Yet for me, as amazing as it may look, I do not focus too much on the end-product of the process but instead, I want to see THE PROCESS — how one achieved such and what it took for one to get to that level (of success and wealth).
I am guilty of spending a huge portion of my day browsing over a lot of content on social media. Call me boring but I am a sucker for motivational and inspirational content — in whatever form — videos, articles, quotes, etc. They say it is great to have a mentor, but I could hardly find one, so instead, I resort to this kind of content to give me a different perspective of things. It also helps me to learn about the “self-made” people: Those people that made something out of starting from nothing. Some people that made my list of people to admire and emulate are Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, Jackie Chan, and Michael Jackson. Motivational content, and reading about these successful people showed me possibilities. It gives me hope and the drive that I can be successful like them too (okay, maybe not on a billionaire-trillionaire level).
It took me almost a decade to “grow up”. What I meant is to create and set a vision of what I want to do with my life; the things I want to be accomplished, the things I want to be attained. What I want to see in the “future me”. At 27 years old, I am on my baby steps towards setting my priorities (this is for real now), listing down the things I want to achieve in the next few months, days, weeks and years. I vow to not lose focus and fall prey on the peer pressure of showing off what I have now. I vow to work on things that will benefit me in the long term. I vow to value time and use it productively. I vow to be better and do what I can to achieve my version of success.