Sunday, February 25, 2018

The Road Ahead: Setting A Goal and Getting Started

Often it's hard to get things done when everything seems to be just a plan or a goal to be set in the future. Yes, there are times when we are preoccupied with thoughts about what to happen in the distant future, but all we do is keep rehearsing until it becomes polished or perfect. However, no matter how refined our thoughts may be, something will only happen with our goals if it's just a thoughtform with necessary action. For years, this has been the reality for most people who are dreamers, setting a plan but only acting on it once everything is perfect. A certain perfection would mean no room for failure, and everything must be smooth sailing.

Whether our intention is directed towards personal development, such as developing our self-esteem to finally quit the corporate job and become a freelance professional, such thing brings excitement through a vivid imagination. A dreamed reality is hard to distinguish from a real-life achievement, though the latter is the most real and not just pure fantasy. Just like an absolute dream when we thought that it had happened already. The moment we wake up seems natural and not a dream state. A Deja Vu, or whatever we call it, a dream will remain a dream, and action will become a reality.

For some, learning to drive and owning a car is a dream. It's not just a luxury but a necessity in everyday living. Since childhood, we have been dreaming of driving even the fanciest car. Anyway, it's just a dream, but we have yet to realize that it's a simple dream that can make a reality. Through perseverance, we have worked on this goal, and there will come a time when we have achieved it. Owning our dream car has become a reality; for others, it's a fantasy, but that is now their reality. As a Sales Consultant, helping people acquire their dream car is my goal, and once they have owned it and driven for the first time, it brings a certain level of happiness and excitement to discover the road ahead. It's the imagination of reaching a desired destination that brings us joy that no matter how tough the journey, we still have the courage to finish the trip.

Another thing is about the journey to entrepreneurship, when some may have planted in their thoughts that someday, they'll run their own business and manage their own people who will help them achieve personal goals. It takes years of endless planning, but action must be taken to start owning it. It's not merely based on fear alone; it's not about lack of knowledge but about the lack of courage and perseverance. How about pursuing post-graduate studies? Do you aspire to get ahead in the corporate world? That's just 2 yrs, and you'll have an advanced degree deserved to get promoted and eventually raise in salary. So many dreamed realities will remain in a state of inertia unless acted through force. That's a law, and the universe tells you otherwise.

Even simple goals have remained as a thought form. Is it the goal to achieve physical fitness? Going to the gym and getting rid of some unwanted cellulite? How about hiking and mountain climbing? Was it last year that you promised to climb a mountain before the year ended? What happened? Simple goals, yet so hard to start. I may be like that, or you may be like that somehow. That's my story, and you have your own story to tell. I always remember a famous quotation: "The best thing to get ahead is to get started," and that must be true. It gives us the courage to make a brand-new start. Not to live based on fear and anxiety, but living a life of power and mighty.

When is the right time for it to happen? In the future? When exactly? Well, there's no perfect time but to act now. I've written something about The Power of Now: Being Aware and Present and about the present awareness and consciousness of relevant events in our lives. Similar to our goals, we have to stop chasing perfection and instead enjoy the journey along the way and correct things as it goes... the journey goes on, and setting a goal is just a single step, but getting started is when we get ahead in life beyond our wildest dreams and aspirations.

© 2018 Del Cusay

Friday, February 16, 2018

Celebrating Chinese New Year 2018: Prosperity and Abundance

Chinese culture and tradition were preserved by the Chinese-Filipino living in the Philippines for several generations, and they have continued to influence Filipinos in many ways.

Our lifestyle, which includes food, clothing, belief system, and even modern technology, is embraced and valued. We are always delighted by the colorful sights and architectural designs and entertained by classical musical instruments. These are some of the influences we've adapted for centuries and will continue to exist for generations. 

Chinese tradition is worthy of preservation since they show us how to love our culture, show respect to older people and share blessings with others.

It was in 2013 when I first experienced the Chinese new year in Binondo. The street was less crowded than at the celebration in 2018, yet people enjoyed the scenes and the Chinese cultural presentation. Celebrating the Chinese New Year 2013: A New Beginning is worth reminiscing about since it awakened my curiosity and fascination with Chinese history and culture and their massive influence on Filipino culture. Today, Binondo is a great cultural hub and an important economic center in Manila. 

The district is vibrant and creates nostalgia as the world's oldest Chinatown. Centuries of cultural and economic ties have formed great friendships and closer relationships. There's a particular bond that unites us, and by embracing each other's culture and beliefs, we're leaving a legacy to future generations of the lasting friendships we have formed through the years. 

The video above; click the arrow to view

Celebrating Chinese New Year 2017: An Auspicious Celebration was about optimism and higher hopes of what will happen or a prediction of fate. Truly a magnificent celebration becomes surreal, and it does a beautiful thing about present and future living. The forecast has become magical with the Chinese zodiac, bringing a wondrous surprise. Being hopeful to the highest degree attracts opportunities, which was a reality in 2017. Something extraordinary happened, and another chapter has opened, which is bigger and brighter. 

2018 was also welcomed, with hopes and aspirations for a more abundant and prosperous life. We have been dreaming of a comfortable and simple life dedicated to service. No matter what influences we have embraced, still, we are Filipino in words, deeds, and thoughts. 

We will continue to be more optimistic about what is unknown and not live in fear but dare to face the challenges with perseverance and a positive attitude. Like the Tsinoy or the Chinese-Filipino, they have succeeded because of their mindset of abundance, having enough, and always asking for more to share what they have. 

Prosperity is about receiving and acknowledging the blessings coming into our lives and taking a part of it to give back and become a blessing to others in need.

May 2018 give you a meaningful life, a prosperous and abundant life, and dreams coming true in the years to come. 

© 2018 Del Cusay

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Never Chase For Happiness: You can Create it

Some people say that to be happy, we must be successful at what we do; we have to reach for our dreams, our destiny, and not the imagined reality. That sounds true to some, but happiness starts to ignite from within. It is not to be chased, and it is never a destination. It may be a journey we create that, even at the crossroads, we still find that little spark of happiness.

There was a guy who was never content with his present life. He finds his world as dull and unexciting. Full of doubts and negativity, he always finds happiness in the presence of a group of friends and is dependent on them. He is not entirely in control and tends to worry in the absence of his friends, whom he considers his own family. He has a lifestyle others couldn't afford and feels happy to have friends with the same personality and lifestyle. The guy wanted to win his friends by bragging about the new things he owned, and that makes him happy when he is praised or idolized. It's a narcissistic personality that is too expensive for someone to possess. He has to compete with others wherever he goes and wants to stay caught up. He can be happy if in the presence of friends but can't motivate himself. He has to chase happiness from others to get comfortable and secure and feel down when alone.

Happiness is something we create and is not entirely dependent on other's opinions of us. There is happiness in solitude, even more than in the presence of a group or team. Happiness comes from the security of oneself and the confidence to own a personal battle. Wherever we go, we find happiness from even meaningful small things. Indeed, we create our own reality, and we can always survive a journey of a thousand miles if we can rely on ourselves. Happiness comes from within and is projected onto others. We create a wave of happiness that is contagious, and that improves our feelings and intrapersonal relationships. Happiness is everywhere, but it can be found first, not from afar or a specific type of person or a group. When we recognize our soulful desires, our heart feels joyful, leading to the eternal happiness we deserve.

© 2018 Del Cusay

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Pasinaya 2018: Love for the Philippine Arts

As a Filipinos, we always must uphold loyalty and patriotism to our country. When we were conquered by foreign invaders, we adopted their ways; language, arts, music, culture, and tradition. For hundreds of years until now, we have had these influences on our lifestyle, our way of living. We have embraced colonialism and slowly neglected our original identity of being Filipino. Although we are considered to be of mixed races by blood, our identity will still be the soul of our nation, and as One Filipino, we will take pride in our culture wherever we are and in whatever we do.

However, today, we must preserve our culture through the arts. The latest generation of Filipinos would have to appreciate the richness of the Philippine culture and pass it on to the next generation. Culture and tradition should never stop; they must continue to exist and evolve, but not obliterate. Hence, we can genuinely preserve it in literal form and in our minds and hearts. 

To appreciate and preserve our culture through the arts, the Cultural Center of the Philippines has been celebrating its annual Pasinaya Festival, which means to 'inaugurate' or 'opening' something grand and festive. The Pasinaya festival, in its 14th year, is gaining much-deserved attention from those who love arts and culture. It is a 2-day festival dubbed "Palihan at Palabas" where art lovers can enjoy workshops on various arts like dancing, singing, acting, writing, and theatrical performances. This is followed by a great showcase of artistic talents and renditions before thousands of viewers who appreciates and loves art. 

This is my 4th year experiencing the Pasinaya Festival, which never fails to amuse and entertain. Being Filipino is a great feeling to see performers from different art genres from other parts of the country. The viewers continue to grow yearly and are joyful with the presentations they may not have seen before. Ancient Filipinos' elegance, graciousness, and glamour only show some refinement in their way of living. So today, in our time, we glimpse how modern Filipinos can take us back to the early days when life seemed simple.

The CCP Resident companies are always in the spotlight. The classical pieces of the Philippine Philharmonic Orchestra; The modern parts of the UST Philharmonic Orchestra;  the gracefulness of Ballet Philippines and Tanghalang Pilipino and the Bayanihan Folk Dance Company and other performing groups have shared their timeless pieces that are indeed a product of class and elegance.

Last year's Pasinaya 2017: Arts for Peace was a great experience, and the viewers were moved by the years' theme when Filipinos can be united through arts despite the unending conflicts. Skills for peace are significant in years to come as we battle to achieve everlasting peace and harmony. While on this year, 2018, is a calling to show our deepest love for the arts to revive our pure sense of patriotism.

Cultural preservation and fascination through arts will go a long way if we are united and show deeper love and loyalty to our national identity. Pasinaya Festival will be one of the greatest gifts we could offer future generations as they reflect deeply on who they are and what they can show and contribute to the world. This is just the beginning of igniting our artistic abilities to prove ourselves and show the world that we are Filipinos with a soulful desire and the greatest love for our nation through cultural appreciation and rendition. 

© 2018 Del Cusay