Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Life Changes, Life Takes You to Places

Daily life is unstoppable. Moreover, it is also unpredictable and fast changing. About a year and a half ago, I can never tell what my life would be during that period of time. At that time I was unemployed, finishing my thesis, and trying to do some freelance jobs just to survive. I thought that I'd simply finish my master degree and try my luck by going seriously at the freelance business market. I couldn't think of working a full time job for a big company or even marriage. The only thing I have in mind is that those things will come after a few years.

But then, in a matter of months, everything started to change. Yes, I did finish my master degree in time. But then, 2 days from my thesis defense, I got a call from a big company setting up a job interview. The company is a big 4 consulting firm and is very capable in the field of governance consulting, the field of my dreams. A few days afterwards I did the interview and 4 days from there I was hired as a senior consultant. Things were since then moving rapidly, I got assigned at big clients and I got married in less than six months after I started working. Then here I am, one and a half years from that point of time. A consultant at a big company, a married man with a charming little baby girl and I don’t know where life will take me for the next one and a half year from now.

Another story of how fast life changes comes from a former colleague of mine. We called him "Bang Udin". Bang Udin was a very senior worker at the company I work for. At that time he has been working for the company for over 14 years. But then issues started to appear and he was forced to resign from the company. He was depressed but he goes on with life, in the mean time also struggling to make himself a certified public accountant. A couple of months after he resigned, I met him at a food court near a client I was assigned. He was working at a 2nd level public accountant firm nearby. He said he's on his way to become a partner in the firm because he was already a certified public accountant at that time. That was the last time I saw him for months. Life goes on of course.

About 2 months ago, the company I work for won a very big project at a national airline. A lot of people, best personnel I should say, were assigned to the project. But everyone was shocked during the kick-off meeting of the project. The meeting was opened and the general manager of the accounting department was supposed to address the meeting. And then, it was Bang Udin, the person that the company forced to resign, that addressed the meeting. And I'd say that he's a big hearted man. He still is the same person we all know. No heart feelings whatsoever. Strictly professional. The group leader that forced him to resign is now a client that has to serve him. But then there he was still being nice to that person that gave him quite a headache back in time. And that was the story of Bang Udin.

What can we learn from both stories? A few things actually.
First, you can plan your future but life is always the deciding factor. Sometimes you'd think you be something else but instead you become the opposite. Don’t be too hard on yourself when you don’t become as what you have planned earlier. Life takes mysterious turns and you will be able to understand the purpose only when you are thankful of where ever life takes you to. You can’t take the full driving control. You can only plan the trip.

Second, be nice to people. You don’t know what that person will be in a couple of months. He can be someone that has control over you or perhaps someone else with more power. If that person is nice like the case of Bang Udin, he will not have the feeling of vengeance. But if the person is someone vengeful, then you'll be in deep trouble. Treat others equally and treat them the way you want to be treated. I know it sounded cliché, but hey, I think it's true.

Third, be grateful for whatever you get in life. Some say that life's like a wheel, or perhaps like a box of chocolate and I'd say that those words are true. You don’t know what you'll get. Sometimes you're down, and sometimes you're up. And foremost, it can all happen in a short period of time. When you're grateful, it will be easier for you to look at the skies and survive the tough times when you're down in the ground. Being grateful will also keep your feet in the ground when you're flying high in the skies. It gives you more balance in life. So be grateful in everything you experience.

Bottom line, life is mysterious and it changes fast. It can change a homeless into a rich person and a rich person into a homeless. So, plan your life but remember that the biggest deciding factor is life itself. And remember that everyone is created equally. Therefore, you have to treat everyone with equal respect, just as you want to be respected by others.

May the mysterious ways bring you a wonderful experience and may all of you can be grateful in every single moment you experience.

-E-

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