Success starts with a dream. The few articles and inspirational books I’ve read more often than not attribute success to a dream. Having dreams and a clear vision of what they want to achieve are observed as common denominators of successful people. Authors claimed that people who have a clear vision of themselves become guided. In effect, they direct all their efforts and hardships to the achievement of that dream. Successful people imbibe the dream and make each day as a path to that dream.
I am not the person described in any of those self help and inspirational books. If such claim is the only requisite for success, then I don’t see myself even a close candidate.
When I was a kid, I love to draw and design things. I was even a member of the school’s Art Club. My dream was to become a Fashion or an Interior Designer. I even compiled my best drawings to a folder that become my first ever work portfolio.
I don’t know how I lost interest in Art and Crafts. When I was in my last year in Elementary School, I joined the Writers Club that produces the Filipino version of our school’s newsletter. I was suddenly into writing. Days before I graduated from Elementary, our class adviser asked us to write a thank you letter to our parents. I wrote a letter for my Nanay and made a promise that I will study hard and become a journalist someday. This was the point in my life when I fell in love with writing.
During my High School years, I was at lost. I struggled in school and lost the interest to write. I love writing but I felt that the field was not for me. I had classmates whose writing talents was way better and won them awards for the school. I never excelled in subjects that required us to write. I received only passing rates in book reports and compositions in our Literature and English classes.
When I reached my senior year in High School, I don’t know what course to pursue. I don’t have a concrete dream of what I want to be. I applied for AB Journalism in the few universities I tried but for some reason, I didn’t pursue the course. I was about to enroll for a degree in Banking and Finance but my elder cousin discouraged me. I don’t know how but some forces led me to choose Economics. Without any idea of what career opportunities that await a graduate of Economics, I ended up entering the course.
During my first years in college, I found classmates who were just forced to enroll the course. Most of them wanted to pursue Accountancy but the strict course requirements and quota hindered them. In effect, they landed to Economics, a not so populated course in the university.
Despite the negative thoughts that surround me, I never gave up my course. I never allowed myself to be spoiled by those rotten tomatoes. I was determined to graduate in four years. With this in mind and the support of my parents, I finished my course in time. My path to Economics was definitely not a picture perfect success story. But for some reason, I think fate intentionally led me to this field. It never came to my mind that my course will provide me the opportunity to revive my passion to write.
My Practicum Professor taught us that our course expects graduates who are well versed in research and report writing. Our professor instructed us to look for a company that provides on-the-job-training in research. And I have to thank him for emphasizing to us the role of research in Economics. Research was the light that brought me to the home that thrives my passion to write.
I initially wanted to teach after graduation but my alma mater refused my application. I was advised to pursue graduate studies. Teaching was out of my list and I told myself that I will only land on a job that provides me the opportunity to research. After five months of job search, I was successfully employed as a Researcher.
My first months as a Researcher was my learning and adjustment stage. It was a blessing that I was trained under the tutelage of a strict boss. I learned and relearned writing. I learned the basics and real practices of writing researches. I was also challenged to improve myself. My boss gave me the opportunity to write my own researches and even present them to the management and community of employees. I have fears and doubts about myself but at the end of the day, I realized that it was a challenge to grow. I was forced to swim in the vast ocean. I learned and devised my own techniques on how to reach the other side of the shore.
Sadly, I am now missing those days. I long for the days when I am given my own research project and have the liberty to spend months to a year for that one great output. At that time, most of the studies I made evolved on labor and employment. One of my colleagues even told me that I might become a labor consultant because of my constant exposure in this area. I love the idea of not becoming a consultant but a researcher who is well versed in labor and employment vs. education issues. I wasn’t aware that I was developing my own niche of specialization. And honestly, I felt respect, dignity, and love in what I’m doing. I was happy and satisfied with my job. There were problems and hindrances along the way, but my passion shielded me from all the threats of dissatisfaction. I wasn’t receiving any form or signs of promotion but I never felt even a thought of leaving the company.
Painful changes came and years after, I found myself in the blackhole of people who lives to work for payday. The work I love to do was gradually taken away. I was a Researcher only by the merit of the job title. I became unwell and unhealthy. I became a sad person. I pitied myself. I lost weight and after some time regained it the unhealthy way.
Up to this point, I still can’t say that I am well. I continuously gain weight because of excessive depression eating. I don’t get enough sleep because I tire myself worrying and anticipating things that are way far to happen. I want to return to my simply happy and healthy state. I know the only antidote for my ailment is to reignite the passion and happiness that were lost. But the thing is I don’t know how will I be able to light up the flame that was blown away. Someone, something and some compelling force should take place to revive the person in high passion and spirits, who used to thrive in me.