Friday 14 August 2015

More than Meets the Eye

Excerpts from the diary of a friend; posted with permission.

It’s been about 4 years since I last left my hometown together with my teenage life. I just missed those days, it seemed forever. If I kind of think about it, I wished it is forever. Back then, I never worried on anything, life was a breeze not like today. Yes diary, 4 years; whatever has happened to my life nowadays is of the unexpected.

The phone call, that call changed my life forever. I knew that it is something urgent; calls were unexpected unless something really important has happened. But the last one shaped my life into what it is today.
Diary, I knew from the start that the time will come that I would end up in the position that I have right now, but I never thought of it to be too soon. It may have been because of the abrupt changes that made me feel so unready. Hmmph, not only was I unready that time but everything… almost all decisions that I made for the firm were a complete mess.

This day diary, I am just so bored that upon gazing on the other buildings through the glass window, I thought of taking a peek at the struggles we’ve had since I first managed the family’s business. I kept on reading through your pages, especially during the time that I first set foot here in Toronto. As I read through you, diary, I reminisced everything. All seemed to be a big joke, seeing all the things I’ve written during those times, I can’t even believe that I’ve written such a thing. It was so… barbaric. The pressures were really unbearable that time, I think it’s the same thing that led me to act so childish.

I kept on reading your pages, especially during those months that I was in deep six; it seemed that I blame it all to my school. I intensively studied the theories, did the home works that were expected of me, and learnt the things that I need to know. However, during those times I was intrigued as to why things didn’t go well. I definitely missed something, something that I really needed in order for me to tackle the problems that I am facing.

Having thought of these things diary, it made me want to know that “something” which I lack. I disregarded all the meetings that day and extended my self-imposed deadlines, I was determined to discover it. The first question that I asked myself was; “Why can’t I handle it?” Realizing that the question is too broad, I listed down the specific things that I weren’t able to cope up and look into what’s common amongst it. It took me about an hour, 2 cups of coffee and some gum to shout out “eureka!” for my problem.

The more I found myself discovering the truth about the problem that bothered me; I realized that it wasn’t the school. It was my entire fault. My memory serves me right, back during those days, I encountered the same problems, and however, I failed to work it out on my own. More of it, I purposively evaded it. Why solve it if you can let your father’s influence solve the issue itself? I pondered on this issue over and over again, my head starts to consider the “what if’s” and the “what could’ve been”. It was through this that I’ve realized that school is more than the theories that we learn, it is also coupled with character building. The pressures that I’m going through right now may have been easier if only I’ve learnt how to handle them on my own as a student. I may not have aggravated conflicts regarding petty issues made by my detractors if only I learnt how to utilize diplomacy against my critics at school. It would have been easy for me to accept suggestions and compliments coming from others if only I’ve emancipated myself from arrogance and embraced humility. True that I have missed so many things just because I’ve thought that school is all about being the best and getting high grades. I was fooled by myself into thinking that it was all I needed in order to prepare me towards the realities of life. Falsely assured that I have it all when in fact, my first day at our firm also became my initiation for learning the things I’ve missed. Diary, it is all clear to me now, school is not just learning the “what is” from “what isn’t”, it greatly involves character building… one that could have prepared me for the troubled times I’ve experienced 2 years ago if only I fully attended the student that should have been in me. School… is truly more than what meets the eye.

--- Among the different journals that I have with me, I am sure that this one better relates to our theme of financial independence. We need education not simply to inform us of things but also to mold us in a way that we are well equipped with the challenges that life has to offer. If you have to ask me as to how this relates to saving… well I realized that making mistakes in business is costly, I could have prevented them all if only I’ve experienced making those mistakes at school, learnt from it, and avoid repeating the same mistakes again. Nice little hideout you have here!

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