Sunday is usually my “rest day”. See what I did there?
I sleep in and try to take the morning slow. Drink tea or coffee, watch video clips of The IT Crowd, clean the house and hang the laundry outside.
While having my coffee and catching up on my social life, I came across this career advice post of Foundr Magazine.
“Best career advice that I can give: Don’t ever attach yourself to a person, a place, a company, an organisation or a project. Attach yourself to a mission, a calling, a purpose ONLY. That’s how you keep your power and your peace. It’s worked pretty well for me thus far.” -Erica Williams Simon
And true enough! I couldn’t agree more. I realised that every time I attached myself to any of the mentioned above, I ended up disappointed.
I will use the term MISSION here because I am not a fan of finding your purpose. I believe that you are not doing what you are “meant to do”, you are doing it because it is your CHOICE.
You cheated? It was your choice.
You went to med school? It was your choice.
You plagiarised? It was your choice.
You slept all day? It was your choice.
Don’t be obsessed too much with finding your purpose, because you will only make this as an excuse why you are doing what you are doing. Make a decision and stand by it. OWN IT.
Let’s unwrap them one by one.
1. Don’t attach yourself to a person
This can be any person in your life. A romantic relationship, a friendship, your boss, your parents, siblings, relatives, anyone really who is considered a homo sapiens.
In my experience, many people in my life (personal and professional) slowed my growth. I am not saying to stop caring about relationships in your life. I am saying that you have to know when those so-called relationships aren’t serving your mission.
There are people who are in your circle but they aren’t helping you become a better version of yourself. Some people aren’t really there because they care, they actually don’t! Let’s accept the fact that nosy bastards and spoiled brats exist.
If you aren’t happy in your relationship or marriage, allow yourself to move on. If you are killing each other emotionally, don’t get abusive. Give each other the freedom. Don’t stay for the sake of nostalgia, the children, money, status etc. Well I can get a hit on this because I have no kids, and I am sorry in advance. My point being is, if the relationship becomes unhealthy and you are not making each other happy, cut to the chase and solve your problems like an adult. If it’s not working, don’t force it. Prioritise yourself, because it’s only you in the end.
The people who want to be in your life will stay and will make an effort. And you should do the same.
Quality over quantity. People come and go. Create meaningful relationships but leave something for yourself. Allow yourself to heal first before you can help others.
2. Don’t attach yourself to a place
My mother is Tagalog and my father is Visaya. I had the privilege to enjoy both worlds. But a little disclaimer: I am not the most articulate “bisaya” out there because I grew up with my mother and her family.
Every time we moved places, I became a different person because I was exposed to different perspectives and values.
And every time I travel, I fall in love with the city. Each place we live or be a transient to will teach us a lesson.
If you grew up, say, in Davao, it doesn’t mean you should stay there forever.
When my mother died in 2015, I was really having a hard time moving on. It was so painful whenever I saw places we used to go out and eat. I told myself maybe it’s time to relocate so I can see a different point of view.
And yes, removing myself from the place where there are so many memories of my mother helped me move on and start again.
3. Don’t attach yourself to a company
This can be difficult to some especially in the Philippines where employment is hard. And tenurity is the most sought-after status.
The longest I stayed in a corporate was 1 year and a few months. And that’s it, I don’t want it anymore. I made friends but I moved on. I didn’t have the clarity that time because I was 21 years old but I can feel that it’s not for me.
I was thankful to my employers for sending me to Shanghai, China for a training but I told myself if I stay longer in this company only because they paid for my training, I won’t be effective anymore. I left and the company grew even better without me.
The company will continue to move on even without you. Don’t be too full of yourself. To be honest, they don’t care. Yes, they will care a bit but it’s BAU (Business As Usual) for them. Get this: There are a lot of people queuing for the position who can do better than you.
4. Don’t attach yourself to an organisation or a project
It’s the same thing with the company but this is more personal but still, same same same. A project or a job can be fleeting like some of your relationships, it’s just a spur of the moment.
Margaret, so where to attach?
Hah! Don’t get so attached if you can.
But if it can’t be helped, ATTACH YOURSELF TO A MISSION.
Why? I will share based on my experience.
When I decided to carve my own path in the digital world, I created a strong WHY. I want to make a change in this world, in my own ways. I don’t want to be famous or a pop star, that type of impact. I want to be lowkey but I want to make a dent in this world. I want people to realise that even if they didn’t become doctors, lawyers or engineers etc like what their parents hoped they’d become, they can still be powerful and successful. And success is relative only when we choose to see it as such. For me this is success. Because I believe I was better than who I was yesterday and I have more freedom now.
This has been my mission. “To let people realise that they have the potential to be someone who they wanted to be if only they would allow themselves to experiment and put their stakes on the ground.”
Be the creator of your own fate. Because the best thing to predict your future is to CREATE IT.
And know that while you are at it, you will get a lot of NAYSAYERS and HATERS. Let them be. You will never please everyone. And it’s not your goal to please people, focus on the mission. Focus on the heart.
Article and Design is based on a mission to transform 1 Million Filipinos to becoming a highly-paid, creative, and globally competitive Filipino freelancer [aka Super Freelancer] or a business owner.
If you are a Filipino or can understand the Filipino language, wherever you are in the world, you can join our mission.
And I always go back to this whenever I feel so tired, mentally exhausted and I want to give up. And there were many times that I want to give up because as I’ve said, some people don’t care. Sometimes they always want to take and take something from you until you are spent. So don’t get too attached to people, attach yourself to your mission.
I am sharing this mission and if I can’t make it in my lifetime, at least I have shared this to you now and you can pass this on and pay it forward.
Don’t be too afraid to make mistakes and look at your painful experiences and learn from it. Continue to be a lifelong learner and keep your heads down at your mission.
Above all, stay grounded my friends.
My mother and I during her 57th birthday. She was a person with a mission and she never wavered.