I’ve always been the overachiever who spent more time in the library than with friends. Despite my honor-student lifestyle, I gained some loyal friends, but I know I missed out on a lot of opportunities to get to know other people and form strong bonds.
For this year, I’ve been thinking about what my main goal will be. At first, I thought I’d concentrate on developing my leadership skills or getting validation as a writer, but when my friend invited me to the debut of her sisters, I suddenly was struck with a new realization–it’s not achievements that truly matter in life, it’s people, the people you get to know in this life, the people who teach you valuable lessons that books cannot, the people you get to love in this life, and the people who love you back because they truly know who you are. Top of the list would be family, then friends, then officemates, then industry friends, and also my career network.
I am making this my main goal because there have been countless times that I promised myself that I would spend more time with family and friends. Yet something perpetually got in the way–they were then my obsessive need to study for a test or do my homework, and now that I have a job, it is the resented insecurity-compelled desire to work and keep working hard till I miserably die with office-approved achievements.
When I am on my deathbed, I will not be thinking “oh how I wish I spent one more hour in the office”, but I’ll be thinking. “I wish I spent one more hour with the people I love.” When my grandmother died, I was hit and am still reeling from immense regret for every hour that I didn’t spend with her, and it brings me to tears every time I realize that I can keep on making this same mistake just because I am so unnecessarily driven to prove myself or to be successful.
This is not to say that I’m going to throw away my career. Of course I want to be a great writer. I don’t want to go to the other extreme and never fulfill my dreams because I keep sacrificing my time for people. What I want is a work-life balance, and since I have a natural tendency to work, I have to give greater effort to protecting my life.
Bonding with officemates, industry friends, and my career network will also help me in my job. I really hate sucking up to people, but there’s one friend who presented it in a different light. She said, “I don’t understand why people don’t want to socialize, making friends is fun!” Another friend told me, “Socializing is 30% of the job!” Although I’m not as debilitatingly shy as I was before, I do experience this feeling of shame whenever I feel like I’m doing something that’s like “sumisipsip”. My mom said that I should see it as “opening my heart to people”. Maybe that’s it. Am I afraid of trusting people? Of letting them in my life? Is it that but disguised as an aversion to sucking up? I also hate greeting people. I just hate it. I don’t know why. Maybe I should reflect on this to figure out where this whole issue came from.
Ok concrete resolutions: when people invite me to get togethers I should show up and I shouldn’t make excuses or be lazy, organize get togethers and stop resenting the leadership/organizer role that has been thrust upon me, call up or go out with a friend once a week, go on an outing with my cousins, and greet people in the office.
- Life Plans Progress Report
- 10 Basic Affirmations
- 100 Things that I’m Thankful For
- 11 Happiness Commandments
- All the Quotes I Love
- Choosing the Non-itchy Dress
- Ja Quote: When Hard Work Becomes Easy
- Lessons from Ms. Luque
- My Greatest Achievement is Breaking out From My Shyness
- My Life Plans As of Right Now
- Pregnant Pause
- That Isn’t Success
- To Shift or Not to Shift
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Note: For some entries in this blog, a few names and details have been deliberately and willingly changed by the author. This is a personal decision made by the author for specific reasons known to her and is not an endorsement for censorship.