nine lives.

I write this, because I think it’s important:

There is a fatal flaw in our general belief in that what we are formally trained in is what we will end up doing for the rest of our lives. More specifically, what we decided at seventeen – mostly because we needed to make a decision to make sure we don’t fall behind on this path called Life: Education – will define the rest of our lives yet lived, irrespective what we think and feel about it.

It’s such a fatal, mental flaw that eventually, if we don’t nip it in the bud early on, will eat up our insides because we forget that we are dynamic beings capable of change and growth — we are, each of us, a cat with nine lives, sometimes even a phoenix that rises from the ashes with every hardship faced. 

And whoever said an engineer is only an engineer; a lawyer is just one who walks and talks law et cetera? Fuck people who tell you that. No, I take that back. Good for them — God bless them for having found their calling and sticking to them come snow or thunderstorm because after all, the world needs more grounded shakers and movers like them, but not everyone is wired the same way. What’s most important, I think, is to become Something first. Become something. Then fill in the details as you go along because after all, what you wanted at fifteen is unlikely what you still want at twenty-five, and who you are at twenty-five is probably not who you still are at forty. 

You can grow to like what you do professionally; you can end up hating it but still be able to do it for a living; you can decide early on, halfway through, or even when you’re far out enough that this isn’t something that you want to do anymore. Just the same, you can at some point suddenly have the pieces click and come together: this isn’t a mistake. You can also put on many hats, sometimes polarizing from each other, and do so at different points in your life — they need not overlap.

My point is: we are dynamic beings, each of us is a mythical cat and phoenix.

Don’t sell yourself short. Don’t let passion alone overtake you, but be careful not to let it die out without a worthwhile fight either. In the same vein, don’t look down on practical decisions that were made in the face of reality. Ultimately, don’t trap yourself in this fatal, mental flaw of all-or-nothing; this-or-that; forever-is-today. Good things take time, and most of the time even better things take a bucketload of hardships and tonnes of seemingly irrelevant experiences, good and bad, to materialize. We are all dynamic beings capable of change, but with a limited viewpoint — you may be able to see the horizon from where you’re standing, but what about the surrounding details? Did you know that the hills are green with acres of lush, wildflower fields? Did you, could you have known that there’s a clear water stream at the foot of the hill?

My point is: become someone – something – first. Then fill in the details as you go along.

What you wanted at fifteen is unlikely what you still want at twenty-five. Likewise, who you are at twenty-five is not who you’ll be at forty. What you need to focus on is who you are now. What you do in each moment matters most.

Just promise me you’d do yourself a favor: honor your gift of life. Become worthwhile.

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Chimney Rock Trail, Point Reyes, CA (Winter 2015)
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