Remember, you are hard on yourself, because you know you are able to do it

This week, a friend of mine posted a link to a really interesting blog posting on Facebook, regarding New Year’s resolutions.

http://hyperboleandahalf.blogspot.ca/2010/06/this-is-why-ill-never-be-adult.html

Daiba Ferris WheelThis really summed up quite a bit of the on-going dilemma of how I (and probably numerous other people) can’t achieve my new years resolutions and how that puts me through a guilt cycle that pains us right up to 11:59pm on December 31st, when I am able finally reset my pain meter to start that cycle all over again for the next year.

Last year was probably the worst of the past few years, as I was probably really half-assed about setting my goals. That really put me in a downward spiral, being hard on myself for not pushing myself harder to not achieve what I wanted.

This is a serious note to myself, but also to others who may think the same as me, we are that hard on ourselves, because we know we can do it. Setting goals and aspirations for ourselves is the first step to greatness, but the steps that follow after that are just as important. For some, this is natural and maybe common sense and a daily routine, but for me and for many other’s out there, it’s a daily struggle to keep ourselves on the track that we want to go in while we are swarmed by the tides of daily routine.

This year, although I haven’t finished setting all of my goals, this is the process I’m following:

  1. I thought about what I want to do and where I want to be in 5-10 years. Even though you may not have an answer to this, I know that I do not want to stay put for the next year. I am still hungry to learn, and I still have so much to gain from the things I have not yet experienced in life. Everyone is at a different stage in their lives, and if you are not the type of person who is able to quit their jobs today, leave your family, pack up your bags to live as a Tibetan monk, then its probably worth while to sit back and think about what you want.
  2. I started setting goals for myself that I want to achieve up to the next 0.25-5 years. Not all of our goals should be for the next year. Set short-term wins as well as milestones towards long-term goals to keep yourself motivated. If you aren’t either willing to take action on it immediately, or to plan out the steps you need to achieve your goal, is it really worth setting up as a goal?
  3. I prioritised my goals. There is no way in the 24 hours and 365 days we have in our life, that we can do everything we want to do. Of all of the daily things that are happening in your life, what are the things that you really want to do? Remember, given that these are personal goals, we are not obliged to do anything. Everything is something we want to do, and not need to do. The more you pile on to do at the same time, the more likely that you set yourself up to procrastinate.
  4. I scheduled my goals taking into mind that I actually have a life. You probably have work, friends and maybe family that probably take up, more than 1/3 to 1/2 of your 24 hours. On top of this, I also have work dinners or just work, that can get me home anywhere between 11pm to 2 am. We may be able to control these things, but in reality, we can’t get around it, and there’s no need to pressure yourself to accomplish your goals sacrificing other things that are precious to you.
  5. Prioritize your goals, but more importantly, prioritize the things that are important in your life today and tomorrow. Going along with the previous point, in order to know how to schedule around our lives, we need to prioritize what is important to us, personally, professionally and financially. There are times we need a break, just sit back and relax, and collect our thoughts. Having this buffer gives us time to reflect and room to catch up. Other times, we need to be stringent on money, and be cheap. Whatever the case, we need to know what’s important at that time, and make sure we adjust accordingly.
  6. New Year’s Resolutions shouldn’t be set just once a year. Like any project, we should set our goals, and set up a way to track our goals, and realign ourselves if we aren’t on track. I’ve used different tools over the years, but this year I really thought about how I can integrate work and my personal life using the cloud again, since I side track for the second half of the year last year on using the cloud. Using Evernote, Nozbe and Google, I’ve started to tie everything together again to remind me of the things I should be thinking about and want to do.

I’ll probably track my progress on my blog this year, let’s see how that goes for 2015. First I’ve got to get everything down.

How do you track your resolutions and goals? How is it working for you and what kind of results have you gotten?

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What?! 2015 already?

Ebisu Showa Atmosphere 1WHOW?! It’s 2015 already! Talk about one year ending quickly. There were ups and downs, despite probably not accomplishing even 75% of what I was setting myself to do for the year end, I did end up doing many things I hadn’t planned for myself.

Key highlights and upsides from 2014 were:

  • Getting married in Hawaii to my long time girlfriend Tomoko
  • Bought my first place, in Tokyo
  • Changed jobs yet again, and moved down to Nagoya by myself  coinciding with my move to the new place (confusing isn’t it?)
  • Despite not setting any goals for myself, I was able to go to the gym once a week to maintain my general health

Reflections and downsides from 2014:

  • I made little effort to save on top of the general investments I was doing, an with buying a new place, moving to Nagoya by myself and the yen getting weaker, there were significant burdens on my bank account that I didn’t really compensate for
  • I was unable to maintain a steady to-do list to maintain the things I needed to accomplish, and even more so, not maintain a digital way of managing my work
  • I wanted to have something to show for my growth this year, but I have nothing to show in terms of results
201402 - Oahu TourIn 2015…
There’s still so much I want to do. I need to connect with myself and find ways so that I am making myself do the things I want to do consistently.  Maybe staying in Nagoya for one week and then coming home takes away from doing hobbies, but I think I will be able to stay persistent with the things I want to do.
First thing is first, time to make my goals for 2015…
Here’s some pictures of Hawaii and Ebisu

 

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How are you planning to accomplish your resolutions for this year?

Another year quickly flew by. 2013 was a really fast year, especially after I finished school.  Although after I finished the MBA, I got my PMP, completed my certificate at Temple for my outstanding continuing education courses and started getting back into photography, but I feel like I’m not accomplishing enough.

I know that 2014 will be a huge year for me personally (with more information to come).  However, life can’t be a big year because I know there’s going to be events coming.  I need to continue to make milestones for myself, otherwise I won’t be able to propel myself  forward.

Moving forward without a tangible goal is a weakness I have in many aspects of my life.  One such aspect of this includes my blogging.  I’ve tried a few times to blog at a more regular frequency, but I end up forgetting or feel that I have to have something more consistent to write about.

Well, here’s a stop to that.  It doesn’t have to be a big post, but I’ve developed new ways to remind me this year to remind me to blog.  Maybe I can blog about that next time.

This isn’t the most exciting blog this time around, but here is to the start of 2014, and getting a start toward it, even though it’s not fully defined for me yet.

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Using the “Cloud” @ Home

Tokyo Fireworks

How many of you use an application that is connected to the “cloud” in one way or another?

After getting popular in the second half of the 2000’s, there’s been a huge boom of cloud services offered on the professional side, such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Google Apps.  When I was taking my MBA, we used Google Docs (now referred to as Google Drive) to share documents with each other, and I used Dropbox and Google Docs to store a lot of documentation I have.

In my work though, I haven’t been able to use the cloud as thoroughly as I wished I could have been using it.  The healthcare industry deals with a lot of confidential data (such as internal clinical trials) and patient data, so much of the data is kept on company servers which may be found in the local country or in databases found across the world.  Due to this, applications like Evernote, Dropbox and Google Apps are not conventionally found in the work place, and the most modern applications found are things like Sharepoint.  If you looked at it from a pure IT standpoint, it probably puts us ages behind large company’s like Amazon, Google or Salesforce.com.

That being said, it hasn’t stopped me from using the cloud for my own personal use.  I spend time thinking about what kinds of applications are out there that can make my life easier and transferable.  What I mean by easier and transferable is:

  • Between the 3 PCs (PC for work, and 2 Mac’s at home), 2 iPads (one for work and one for personal use), 2 iPhones (one for work and one for personal use) and my iPod, how can I streamline the data I have between them; and
  • Having the same information, no matter where I am, as long as I have the internet.

And at the moment, and this could change in the future, I’ve landed myself into using a few cloud based applications that help me connect myself anywhere I go:

  • Evernote (and software connecting through it);
  • Amazon’s Kindle and Audible, and;
  • iCloud (this one is more indirectly).

This wasn’t an overnight transition, but a migration done through trial and error over the years.  When I was in my undergrad, I had the luxury to be able to spend time on open-source or more “accessible” means of software solutions.  I would spend time finding the great piece of software beyond my needs, and spent the time connecting or transferring the files from one software to another.  But as time went on, I came to Japan, and I found that I had less time to do the things I used to do, because I wanted to spend time doing other hobbies or spend time doing things that were more in line with the goals I wanted to accomplish.

In the last four years, I have spent time trying to find methods to maximise my time doing the things I want to do, and less time in setting up for the things I want to do.  Below is the high level transition I’ve made over the years to get to where I am today.

  1. I started focusing myself on goals, no matter how small.  Some of you know, some of you don’t, but I wasn’t very goal oriented before.  I just did… or didn’t do things.  They had no purpose and it was easy for me to get out of the mode and get bored.  I stopped doing this.  I started doing small things like going to classes, and this in turn connected to getting a certificate.  Putting aside money was for paying off debt before, but now it’s become for retirement and making large purchases.  Getting my MBA was so I can accelerate my career.  This blog, was to keep track of the milestones or things I’m doing in my life.
  2. I stopped investing a large amount of my time playing video games.  Having an Xbox 360 or Wii at the time required a large investment of time, and I stopped investing in it, as only playing for luxury and not for competitive purposes didn’t add any value to the goals I had in mind.  Playing games to take my mind off things for the immediate future is good, but I think a large investment of time in video games leaves nothing tangible in the end.  This was, and still is the biggest deterrent for me to play games and the reason why I only spend a small fraction of my time playing them.
  3. After 20 years of using Windows (Windows 3.1, 95, 98, 2000, ME, 2003, Vista, 7), I made the transfer to Mac.  After I stopped playing video games, I needed less customisation with my system, and I just needed a system that worked and was easy to use.  Making the initial investment to learn the specifics was a bit of hassle, but if I have any trouble, I can look it up online, and I didn’t need to use any custom or specific hardware beyond web browsers, Microsoft Office and Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop, which is all available on the Mac.
  4. I started to use Apple products.  I streamlined the experience I had between my iPhone and Mac and then transitioned into using the iPad for school and some work, and this helped me to use similar formats using an existing base of applications with very little troubleshooting or compatibility between the hardware I was using.  It’s a repeat from the the point above, but I wanted to just “do” it, and not actually spend time setting myself up to get there.  Using iCloud has helped me to transfer information between the hardware seamlessly, and saved me cost since I can transfer applications between my iPhone and iPad.  This seems like it’s a given since we use it everyday, but it wasn’t so long ago that we had to pay per license (or still do with products like Microsoft Office).
  5. I stopped buying books because I no longer needed to.  I had initially purchased a Kindle 3 a few years back, but after I got the iPad (the purchase was not solely for this purpose) I could use the Kindle application across all my devices including my PCs.  Having a book is nice, but it takes up space and I can’t always carry around a book, where as I always have my phone on me.
  6. The introduction of Audible and audiobooks.  A good friend of mine told me he listened to audiobooks when he exercised.  He probably goes through 3 or 4 books a week so reading another book at the gym was not an issue, but I read maybe 1, 2 at most 3 books in a month.  That’s when I discovered Audible.  It syncs the book I’m reading on Kindle and let’s me pick up wherever I left off, vice versa. (I mentioned this in my previous blog).  This has saved me a tremendous amount of work, and also allowed me to use a lot of time that I would conventionally be only able to do one thing and let me multitask like during my commute or the times I’m exercising.
  7. Using Evernote has also been a tremendous life changer for me.  It’s given me a way to organise ALL of the information I have around me.  Since today’s blog is getting long enough as is, I’ll be devoting another piece just to going paperless, but it’s allowed me to do just that.  I still use conventional pen and notebook (and I love my Moleskine) to take meeting notes and write out my to-do list.  I purposely don’t use Evernote as a to-do list at this time since I’m haven’t disciplined myself to the point that I can use the cloud to be able to consistently monitor my notes so that I can come back to it and refresh it.  I jot down my groceries, store recipes from online, put in maps, personal notes I take down on my iPad, blog ideas… anything and everything.  But I think it’s been a sensational motivator to get my life rolling at a new pace.  There’s a ton more I want to write on Evernote, but I’ll save that for next time as this is getting long enough as it is.

If you have actually read up to here, thank you for sticking with me to get to this point.  I actually didn’t think I would have this much to write about how I have set myself up for the cloud and how I’ve been using it, but you can see, that the very few applications I have have impacted me greatly.  I’m sure that this will continue to change as the world becomes more and more connected over the next 20-30 years, and hopefully we are not cut off from power like in the TV series, “Revolution”.

If anyone else has experiences with how they’ve used the cloud, or even found efficiencies in their lives, I would love to hear your stories, so please share.

 

 

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The Power of One Percent (1%)

I was lucky this week to be able to catch up with a few former colleagues at a dinner in central Tokyo. One of these people made a comment that night, that I felt that I had to write about and share.

Apparently it was something that he had heard this from someone else as well, but nonetheless, with some simple math, it was something I felt was worth sharing.

So, here goes…

How much is 1% of a day?

1% of 1 day
= (1%) x (1day) x (24hours/day) x (60minutes/hour)
= (1%) x (1440minutes/day)
=14.4minutes/day

Now in small numbers, 1% doesn’t really seem like a big number.  But what if you spent 1% of your time doing something you love to better yourself, or to learn something new or build upon the knowledge you have.  We’ve all probably heard somewhere in our lives that “the little things add up”.

Doing 1% a day, for an entire year
=(1%) x 365days
=365%days or 365% growth

Basically, by spending just 15 minutes a day doing something consistently, you have potential to get more than 3.5 times better at it in a year.  But of course, if you put in no effort at all, the math becomes really simple.

Doing 1% a day, for no days at all
=(1%) x 0days
= 0% growth or nada
(Something times 0 is always 0)

It’s been something I had been consciously aware of for the last year or so, but had never really put it into words or equation, and it dawned on me that when the math was there, that it all made sense, and it made even more sense to continue to keep on doing what I do now because the math is there to support it.

What do I do to get my daily dose of learning?  We all probably read books sometimes in our spare time, but I usually do it on my commute.  I don’t pull out a book, but I usually pull out my iPhone or iPad to read on my Kindle app.  However, I had a 5-10 minute commute from my door until I get into the station, and another 10 minute walk from the station to work in the morning.  I have been optimising this time by using Audible, or audiobooks (which syncs with the Kindle app so that it picks up the book where I last left off listening to, or vice versa), and the extra 10-20 minutes (one way) I get in addition to the commute really helps me to get me pumped for the day or cooled down for the evening.

Learning doesn’t have to be in huge chunks.  Doing it when we can will get us to places.

 

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Getting Back on Track for 2014

We are fast approaching the end of 2013.  I can’t believe 10 months have gone by since we started the year.  It’s been an extremely eventful year with memories galore.

Do you remember if you had set goals or resolutions for yourself at the beginning of the year?  How well did you come along with them?

About three years ago, I had started setting goals for myself as a measure of how much I achieved or … did not.  I looked back on the goals I set for myself for 2011 and noticed that I had achieved a lot of my professional goals, or at least was on track to achieve many of them.  While for my personal goals… I think I only achieved about half of it.

2011 was a big year for me.  I changed jobs and started working a lot of overtime, and I was taking my MBA at the same time.  A lot of my focus was on professional and educational goals.  This carried on throughout 2012, where most of my life was put on hold.  In 2013, I changed jobs, finished my MBA, got my PMP and am on my way to finishing off a certificate that I had outstanding before I started the MBA.  That clears up about half of my debt I had to myself, so I’ll need to start focusing on myself more.

I started working out again this year, so I’m getting into much more shape, but I’ve been working on getting more muscle and not really losing fat.  What that means in normal language is that my pants don’t fit.  All the new pants I had bought at the beginning of this year do not fit and I am on a mass rush to reduce my pant size back to what it was at the beginning of the year.

I’m going to get myself back on track for 2014.  More time for my personal life, and more dedication to getting a balanced life.

So here’s to  getting prepped for 2014.
Daibosatsu Stream

 

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Life… after the MBA

It’s been almost three weeks since my graduation from the MBA. One of my class mates was saying that post-MBA, many people go off and start their own company’s because they feel there’s an empty void after cramming ourselves with school along side work.

I must admit, I am definitely feeling the void. I’ve been trying to map out what I wanted to do after the MBA, and to some degree, I can see myself obtaining the goals I set for myself.  But I feel that I won’t have that same “sense of urgency” I had when I was going to the MBA.  In two years, I myself may not have changed in terms of who I am, but what I have experienced has changed my perspective on how I interpret the word “busy” or “fulfilment”.

I do have a sense of fulfilment now with a piece of paper indicating that I completed two years of school in Japan at an American University, with honours (sorry… going from a engineer who was scraping by in school to an honours student was quite an achievement for me). But the part that is missing, is the Saturday’s.

What Saturday’s meant…

Saturday’s… meant time away from family, friends and significant others for two years.  It meant one less day off during a 50-80 hour week.  It meant there was collateral damage to our week by spending anywhere from 10-20 hours on homework.  It meant that for a person like me who can only focus on three things at once (of which two are filled up with work and personal hygiene) and dislikes doing things when I can’t devote my full time to things, that I would have almost zero time for hobby’s.  It meant getting up early on Saturday mornings to sit in class from 9am-6pm.

But it also meant that I got to make new friends, and spend my Saturday’s with people who shared a sense of value for work, culture and a balance in life.  It meant I got to be around people who understood that we could strive to do better, despite being in a land away from our first home.  I got to speak English, after a week of only Japanese at work, in a way where I didn’t have to filter myself.  And I got to be with people who could put up with my unfiltered (and sometimes uncensored) questions from the back row (my rocking chair by the fire place in the class for two years).  We shot ideas at each other, challenged each other, and in the end, always came out with presentations that never failed to impress.

Oh how I miss thee… the MBA

So it’s not school itself I miss.  It’s the atmosphere that our class had (which I feel that every class uniquely creates every year) which I can not replace in my life now.  I am making a list to continue to challenge myself, and continue to goto school to try to get the “high” that I had been receiving for the last two years.  But it’s not enough…

What I want to do most right now, and what I feel is missing… getting a sense masochism through a challenge that I am putting myself through and being able to share that challenge with others.

And so, this is how I will start the new chapter of my life.  As Steve Jobs had borrowed a quote from his younger days, I will borrow that quote from him.  “Stay hungry, stay foolish.”  That is where I am today and will be the today of years going forward.

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And so I return… with a degree!

Feel the Rainbow

Dear my friends,

I’ve been away from the blogging scene for too long…  It has been an eventful last couple of years, and I felt that not writing for the last couple of years has suppressed something inside me that I was wanting to let out.  Well, I no longer have excuses, and here is my return to the blogging scene.  I do intend to write more going forward, and make sure that I set out new goals for myself, and update the internet on what’s been happening in my life, but there is something I must write about.

The MBA is done!

Two years, sixteen courses, and probably hundreds of hours on Skype later, I am finished my MBA.  This is the single most significant reason why I had been offline from my blog for so long, and it was worth it in so many ways.

Firstly, I have to thank everyone who supported me in doing this.  The loved one’s, the friends, the classmates, the colleagues, everyone who took either a hold on my life, or supported me every step of the way in order for me to finish this chapter of my life, I couldn’t have done it without you.  You are the reason why I was able to overcome the milestone in my life.  My classmates, you helped me along for so much of the way, and I feel that you contributed so much in opening my eyes to bring me to a high level of understanding, so thank you for that.

To give you a run through of my two years in the MBA in a nutshell, it was hard.  To be honest, compared to engineering, the topics which were covered were not as difficult, but the challenge came in balancing work, personal life (which was pretty much non-existent), education and sleep.  If had a normal “60”hour-week like every Japanese business man, I would probably be able to manage, but having more work, and less sleep, really took away from the quality of the work.

Another thing which really helped me get through the two years, and I’ve already mentioned part of this above, is the class.  I don’t know how it is in other classes, but I had a great class (understatement).  They gave me the freedom to express my thoughts, while encouraging an environment that was not confrontational.  We supported each other well, and respected each others strengths and weaknesses.  Before I entered the MBA, so many people had written that going to class was a chance to network.  My class, was this, and then some.  It wasn’t networking, but a place to make friends-for-life.  It was one of the most encouraging part of my week, to go to school, a place where I could share my thoughts and feelings after wrenching up mixed feelings during the week, and have a sense of comfort knowing that everyone else had gone through similar hardships and difficulties.  I cannot express my gratitude with my words toward my class for being there for me every step of the way, and it is with great sadness that I will not be able to share my Saturday’s with these people anymore.

I want to keep this blog brief.  There is more to write and express, but this is just the beginning of the new chapter, and I wanted it to start with a thanks to everybody.

 

 

 

 

 

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A New Frontier

Tomorrow, I start the next chapter in my professional career in Japan.

Things went by so smoothly and so quickly, with my focus on the direction I want to go in, that I didn’t actually take time to absorb how vast the change from “what I was doing” to “what I will be doing” was.

In Japan, often times, coworkers and colleagues have a gathering called “Soubetsu-kai” to see off people who are departing from the company (regardless of the reason).  This event literally means a gathering for the departing.  I had a chance to have quite a few “Soubetsu-kai” with my past colleagues, some which have known my right from my first day, and I was able to reflect on how much I have changed, and what I was actually doing for the past four years in Japan.  I realized that I had gained probably very little in terms of professional knowledge compared to what others would pick up in four years on their job; but I was given so much experience to go from a naive, stubborn, over confident and confused fresh grad to a ambitious young adult who has a lot of value towards the work he does, and the changes he wants to make to in the industry.

I turned 27 last month (June 23rd for those interested), and to be honest, I don’t think I have ever felt younger in my life.  I think that age as a number means very little.  Youth is about if you have the drive to make yourself better.  With age, we may lose our physical ability to lift ourselves every morning, but our minds have the potential to grow younger with every  neuron of information absorbed.  We have the potential to interconnect that information with past knowledge and experiences to create new ideas and understandings.  These new ideas and understandings are what can contribute to our “youthful” thinking.  It’s just up to us to exercise it.

Tomorrow, I step into a new world.  I was given a chance to be where I was four years ago, with everything I have gained during that time.  A chance that I know many would die to have. Balancing this with school and my private life will be extremely difficult, but I plan to succeed!  Everything contributes to success.

Wish me luck!

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Long time no write


A NICE CHANGE

It’s been almost a month since I wrote my last post.  This was not a time lapse I wanted to happen, but I felt I needed it.  It wasn’t a break from writing, but it was more of an investment for myself; a time to re-learn what I needed to do next in life, and how to handle my personal conflicts, which I felt were exploding radically beyond my physical and emotional limits.  I felt this week, that it was time to start writing again, and with the series of events which have been happening, I can get back on track with my writing which has been on and off the past couple of months.

First and foremost, I want to start with the big news.  I GOT A NEW JOB!

I spent only nine months in my new department.  However, without this opportunity, I would probably not have been able to put my foot in the door with my new position, so I am grateful for the opportunity.  Some quick facts about me and my company until now.

  • 4 Years = 48 Months
  • 5 Official Managerial Changes, 3 Different Team Leads
  • 8 Teams
  • 1 Promotion (by title, not responsibility nor money)
  • 2 Overseas business trips
  • 3 Job Descriptions

EXPLAINING THE CHANGE

We spend eight hours a day, plus another hour to two hours commuting to work on weekdays.  We do this, so that on the weekend, we are given the privilege to do the things we “want” to do.  By balancing our goals that we have in our private lives with work, an equilibrium is created from the money that we make so that we can pursue our interests.  These goals outside of work can vary widely, from habitual shopping sprees, paying off loans from accumulated debts, to supporting a family etc.  However, what do you do, when work starts to conflict with the goals that you have?  What do you do, when the place you spend the most time of your life at, threatens the very essence of who you are, and what you want to accomplish?  Each person has a different answer to this question, and I honestly do believe that there is no one-size-fits all solution, but I want to share how I saw my world, how people were able to influence me, and how I was able to find a solution for myself.

Over the four years, I felt myself deteriorating.  I know I didn’t have it nearly as bad as other people, but I could feel a cold winter breeze making the trees bare within myself.  I had been losing my motivation at work, and in turn, my attitude toward other aspects which I held dear in my life.  I could not find the motivation to go to the gym, and set arbitrary goals for myself, or could I find the spark to capture the everyday beauty in life that surrounded me with writing or with my camera.  I had to squeeze every bit of effort to write and speak positively.  What was I actually doing which made me feel so bad?  The deep root cause of this extends way back to when I first entered the company, but that’s going to take way too much time to explain so I will cut right to the chase.  I found myself coming to Japan to utilize skills which I felt were unique to me and a small population in Japan, and those skills were going unused in the current position I was doing, and would go unused for at least another year to year and a half.  I was angry at my manager and my company for getting my hopes up, for had I known that there was no plan for me to be where I wanted to be, I would not moved into my team in the first place.  I felt betrayed and trapped… there was a long winding road to where I wanted to get to, and I saw that path, but I had lost sight of the first step  in front of me.  There was a short darkness to the path I needed to be on, and I didn’t know if taking a step into that darkness would be the right one or a long road that would divert me from my course, or a pit which I would not be able to climb out of.  (I know I’m repeating myself from my last blog, but it’s been a month, so give me  a little leeway).

I was in the express lane of blame, and I would weave my way to the front of traffic to try to cut off the person who was at the core of the jam.  It didn’t matter how much congestion there was, I knew that if I didn’t blame someone, I wouldn’t feel justified in how I was feeling.  But I realized that this blame was a big problem, and I had to stop pointing my finger at others for what I was feeling inside.

Just as I was feeling this way, I decided to visit one of my colleagues at work, a true life inspiration.  I don’t want to go into the details here as a lot of it is personal to him, but he has been physically and mentally put through undeniable hardships, and still has come through it maximizing every opportunity there is for him, and thinking positively about life as a whole.  (Thanks GK)  He had recommended me a book (one of many he had read), called “Leadership and Self Decption:  Getting out of the Box”.  I’m not going to promote the book, but what it helped me do was to analyze why I was blaming other people, and how I can take opportunities and evaluate them better so that I am more in control of how I am thinking and approaching things.  Whenever I saw a problem with how I saw a person, it was not them that was making me feel uneasy, but it was me who was seeing a problem in them.

So this brought me back full circle to my work, my goals and my problems.

I was/am working toward my goals and aspirations in my career and life.  My aspirations went far beyond the work I was doing in my company.  The current work or management could not give me what I wanted to achieve  and help me to grow to where I want to be over the next few years, including a culture to develop my career in a company, speak English and use my bi-cultural abilities as well as become more of a central role for a company in Japan.  The fact that I had these goals and was not on target with them, was not the company’s responsibility, but strictly my own.  I set my goals, and I was moving toward them, and if I couldn’t meet my goals here, I had to step up the game and go to a place where I could do it.

I was fortunate to meet a Korean person who was trilingual in Japanese, Korean and English, who saw potential in me, and gave me a chance to meet with some of the people in his company.  I was instantly impressed.  I initially didn’t have intentions of joining that company, since the industry was slightly different from my own, but found myself sold by this Korean person who I had known for all of 45 minutes, and the culture which he was trying to build in the company.  After meeting my would-be manager and a young Portugese director, I had no doubt that I wanted this position and could learn an astounding amount from these people… and after 2 hours of second and third interviews, and a fifteen minute wait, I was once again impressed by the company, when they offered me a position.  The decision making position was so fast, that I was blown out of my mind.

The timing of this, when my colleague offered me simple advice to change my life, I changed my perspective and had a paradigm shift; and to add to this, the series of interviews within this company was impecable.  Life works in funny ways.  But it is now time to close this chapter of my life, and look to new beginnings.

It’s been a month since my last blog post, and I think I’ve written a months worth already.  Stay tuned for other topics in my life which I will be writing about.

 

 

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