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On Meta-Commitment

Me and My Artwork, an accomplishment I never dared to commit to before out of fear and laziness

Me and My Artwork, an accomplishment I achieved through commitment. I almost never dared to commit to before out of fear, doubt, and laziness. Voila! A little push and I discovered a new talent!

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back– Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way.” – W. N. Murray

Every one of us is on the way to surpass what we are at the moment. As soon as we envision what we could become, we are often plagued by the challenges we may come across. It pesters and stains our enthusiasm. A cloud of uncertainty and doubt looms inside our mind and oversees our decision making. It makes us feel comfort in the present just because we feel vulnerable and uncompromising. It is cowardly to lose the fight just because it is uncomfortable. On the other hand, it is honorable to keep on going despite turbulent circumstances.

Challenges we encounter act as a measure or gauge of our maturity. It is a reminder of how far we have come. The more complex our problems, the prouder we must be for we have reached another level in our development. Without challenges, our small steps will remain small and we will not be able to take big leaps. We will be likely to contain ourselves in the four walls of our idealism. We will not know the realities that we might encounter and discount the fact that it is better to face adversity now than later in our journey.

It is also common for us to delay matter to another day. Without noticing it, we can accumulate a heap of delays and time is eventually wasted. By dealing with problems head on, we will realize that we can gain the right knowledge and right experience. We become resourceful and creative. The next time we encounter a similar problem, we can pat ourselves on the back and take comfort knowing what to do now. Let us compel ourselves to engage in a process of learning and relearning.

Conscientious repetition then translates into habit. It takes 21 days to build a habit. Imagine sacrificing just a few moments everyday in exchange of a better future. It is awkward and annoying at first, but as long as consistency and focus are maintained, wisdom and momentum are developed. It becomes engrained in our routine and for a long while we cannot live without it. A special meaning is attached and a hunger to create becomes second.

Commitment builds a good foundation. We may encounter difficulties and self-doubt in the first few tries. Like learning to ride a bike, we can encounter bruises and scratches. But if we think about it, time heals all wounds and we become wiser. It is bad to commit and retreat from endeavors just to realize we have built only small mounds of sand castles. Why not transform that meager heap of soil and work endlessly into a fortified stone tower?

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Roland Andre Malic is a creative writer and blogger who took writing and speech courses in TalkShop, under the mentorship of Sheila Viesca, CEO and Director of Communication. Still finding out his niche in life, he is on the way to self-discovery by traversing creative ventures, a step at a time, which include writing and blogging. He also finds joy in watching mind-boggling films, reading about art and history, and exploring musicians and artists from eclectic genres.

Success through Inspiring

Radiate like a Light Bulb

Radiate like a Light Bulb

“He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often, and loved much;

Who has enjoyed the trust of pure women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children;

Who has filled his niche and accomplished his task;

Who has never lacked appreciation of Earth’s beauty or failed to express it;

Who has left the world better than he found it,

Whether an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul;

Who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had;

Whose life was an inspiration;

Whose memory a benediction.”

– Bessie Anderson Stanley

Each of us has a different definition of success. Some define it based on their good grades, some attribute it to their career, some consider it as their influence or power, while some equate it with philanthropy, and so on. From what I observe, there is a common ground in our views of success. It is a sense of fulfillment. But then I ask, “How about a successful life?” I think, ultimately, that a life well lived makes you want to say “I have no regrets and I can die right now.” Success is not defined by achievements. It is marked by the appreciation of where we are right now and where we will be going to.

If we define success as a goal, it can become heartbreaking because of rigid expectations. What we view ourselves to be might be different from what would come. It is important to live today rather than project into the future too much. We need to look at the positive side of everything. There is always an inspiration or a simple lesson in every petty thing we encounter. We can meet a stranger, experience a feeling or catch another’s story. We can even find goodness in our own faults. Do not take mistakes for granted because, if not for those, you would not have learned to do things better.

With all the stresses in life, it takes a few muscles to lift a heavy load – smile. Aside from the forceful self induction of happiness chemicals, it brightens up your perspective. Thank yourself for being alive! You are alive for a reason – use your enthusiasm and cunning to help mankind. Smiles are contagious and it is self-assuring when you are aware that you made others happy even for a bit of a second.

As long as circumstances allow, we must act our best and give our all in everything we do. We must commit our greatest efforts in our endeavors all the time and achieve to be a source of inspiration. Nothing supersedes more than passion. No matter how simple and seemingly boring your job is, do it with pride. No one will ever threaten or belittle you – all the more will they be amazed by you. You are one of the shining little light bulbs in a universe of darkness. If one spark can light a dark room, imagine a few more of you.

A successful life is not measurable by tangible or egotistical achievements. For me, success is achieved when there is a complete cycle of greatness, inward and outward flow of inspiration in a person. We must do our best in harnessing kindness, enthusiasm, and passion in all that we do so we feel purposeful, connected, and fulfilled.

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Roland Andre Malic is a creative writer and blogger who took writing and speech courses in TalkShop, under the mentorship of Sheila Viesca, CEO and Director of Communication. Still finding out his niche in life, he is on the way to self-discovery by traversing creative ventures, a step at a time, which include writing and blogging. He also finds joy in watching mind-boggling films, reading about art and history, and exploring musicians and artists from eclectic genres.

Captain Phillips (2013): An Amateur’s Reaction

Captain Phillips (2013)

Directed by: Paul Greengrass

Written by:  Billy Ray, based on the novel by Richard Phillips

Starring Tom Hanks,  Barkhad Abdi

Slight spoilers ahead….

Usually, I don’t prefer to watch movies like this (a slightly strong statement to put it in to words: I was coerced to watch it) but, as I spent more time to digest the movie, the story-telling surprised me into liking it. I think that an effective movie does not just tell one message. It conveys a message with different angles to look at to probably generate a lot of thought and emotion. It is clear that what the creators of the movie Captain Phillips (2013) aimed is to dramatize the survival story of Captain Richard Phillips, the title character played by the amazing  actor Tom Hanks, and his crew under the terror of pirates, played by amazingly superb, previously unknown actors (Barkhad Abdi, Barkhad Abdirahman, Faysal Ahmed, and Mahat M. Ali).

The message I got from this movie is how Captain Phillips got in touch with the humanity of the men despite the terrifying, traumatic, and nearly fatal situations they had put him (especially him) and his crew through.

This movie left me losing the faith in people (including myself) because of the way we prejudice the who we meet everyday. We never dared to ask the reasons why people do the things they do, whether the question of morality is present or not, and fail to put ourselves in the position of others that we automatically see things in extremes: good or bad. For instance, this movie explained why the pirates do what they do: they NEED money because opportunities to obtain money the righteous way in their current social and geographical position do not exist. People resort to extreme actions just to gain what is not accessible to them and because of the lack of opportunities, like education of jobs, they have a limited point of view to appreciate what needs to be appreciated, which makes them go on to participate in heinous crimes instead .

I never thought that a movie like this would let me generate deep thoughts. From this, I hope that we become more open and understanding toward the people we mingle with everyday. Once we empathize with the people we meet, there will be wider distribution of understanding, knowledge, and opportunities for all and create a more harmonious society.

This is a good film. Watch it.

Realization for the week: I’d never learned to embrace feeling good. I always harbored so much negativity, I’d always thought it is my defining quality. When I actually deserve to feel good, I’d always worry about the genuineness, the longevity, and the worthiness of the sense of accomplishment and happiness. I have to start embracing that feeling and leave all of the anxiety and self-shaming behind because that is the whole point of striving hard and transforming for the better.

Standing Out Seems Uncomfortably Wrong but Totally Okay

Standing out yet isolated and lonesome. Really?

Standing out yet isolated and lonesome. Really?

“I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.” 

–  Robert Frost’s famous poem, The Road Not Taken

I often ask myself why I feel like a fish out of water most of the time. There is disconnection from most people in my age group. I have wisdom and disposition way beyond my years and I feel iffy about it. The interests that I partake seem to be of no importance to others. Then, after I searching deep within me for answers, I came to realize something. There is nothing wrong with being different. There is no need to be like everyone else. It is one of the tools we need to spark change.

I need to remind myself that people are different from each other. Each has his own quirks and idiosyncrasies. People are gifted in certain ways. Some have things that you want but you don’t have. The same goes vice versa: you have something that other people do not have. I just need to figure out what I am good at and just stick to it. In the long run, this something will become my specialty and defining quality.

I still have to find a community that supports me. It may be true that the five people we spend our time with most are the ones who influence us. I have to be selective of my friends. It is quite harsh but effective. I need to veer away from people who drain my energy and positive attitude. I want good role models who achieve and give back. I need a group which prioritizes hard-work, passion and happiness. This is a move that can bring me into great heights of success and fulfillment.

Ultimately, I must never lose the sense of myself. It is easy to be caught up by the rushing waves and then let destiny decide. But doing so depletes my power over me. Only in being true to my decisions will I be free and certain of where I think I am heading. I will get hold of the wheel and steer it to the right direction. I am worthy of having been given a life and having a sense of individuality. Having the clarity of mind will make me think for myself and not just follow what society imposes.

At the end of the day, it is no use changing myself just to please people who do not care about me. I just have to let my personality shine through and I don’t have to worry anymore. Given the unconventionality I possess, I just need focus on the things that are important to me. The ones who will stay will be there to support me. Once I have a sturdy platform, I can truly make a stance, do what I want without self-doubt, and eventually affect a difference.

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Roland Andre Malic is a creative writer and blogger who took writing and speech courses in TalkShop, under the mentorship of Sheila Viesca, TalkShop’s CEO and Director of Communication. Still finding out his niche in life, he is on the way to self-discovery by traversing creative ventures, a step at a time, which include writing and blogging. He also finds joy in watching mind-boggling films, reading about art and history, and exploring musicians and artists from eclectic genres.

Worthwhile Anticipation

Shadowed by Waiting?

Shadowed by Waiting?

“Have patience with everything that remains unsolved in your heart. Try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books written in a foreign language. Do not now look for the answers. They cannot now be given to you because you could not live them. It is a question of experiencing everything. At present you need to live the question. Perhaps you will gradually, without even noticing it, find yourself experiencing the answer, some distant day.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

Sometimes we feel as if everything seems to be not working despite all our best intentions and positive efforts. We often question whether what we are doing is worth it. At worst, we might end up quitting because there is no indication that what we are doing is right. There is no instructor to give us three stars for a job well done or an alarm that would warn when we are about to tread the wrong path. We are left to be blindfolded reaching out into uncertainty for something to hold on to. It is a painfully long wait. However, patience is the key to a worthwhile anticipation.

Patience lessens the stress. Impatience is brought about by expectations not met. In a way, being annoyed pulls us down instead of lifting me up. We must accept that events do not favor us all the time so we must take everything in as it should be. If we stay within the lines of strict ideals, we will not welcome sudden chances of opportunities. These may open new pathways for us or broaden our field of scope. They will present a lateral growth in perspective and possibilities.

Once the inevitability of uncertainty is accepted, maintaining patience can also mean maintaining a state of mind ready for positivity and productivity. Worry just creates a spiral of expectation and disappointment. I say we must set aside the one that upsets us and do something else just to take a breather. Find an activity that fosters a different kind of thinking process. Go for a hike, swim a mile, read a novel, eat a cookie. Travel to India, volunteer in a non-profit organization or play in a band. Rest your mind and reclaim energy from another source. Once we resume, we will have fresh pair of eyes and brain for revitalized and stress-free decision making.

After pampering ourselves, we must go back and focus. The purpose of distraction is to replenish our source of inspiration and not a permanent escape. Maybe the blockages we encounter are just interrupted adrenaline rushes. We must not forget what we are striving for. Even though we need a good break we are still responsible for our work.

It is understandable to be painfully waiting for the end of our suffering and sacrifice. It is important to sometimes lower our standards and welcome uncertainty. This way we do not become stringent and rigid on ourselves. When times get rough, we can distance ourselves for a while and look at it as a whole picture. Only then will we fully realize how far we have come and it is not worth giving it up. It will take time but it is going to be worthwhile and gratifying.

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Roland Andre Malic is a creative writer and blogger who took writing and speech courses in TalkShop, under the mentoring of Sheila Viesca, CEO and Director of Communication. Still finding out his niche in life, he is on the way to self-discovery by traversing creative ventures, a step at a time, which include writing and blogging. He also finds joy in watching mind-boggling films, reading about art and history, and exploring musicians and artists from eclectic genres.