taking action.

i feel better. that’s good news and i hope it continues moving in this positive direction. it’s still early if i’ll feel this way long term, but i’ll take what i can.

i don’t know how to describe my week to be honest. i think it was pretty good considering all the choices i had to make. a part of me is just relieved that i took action and that’s over, but there’s also that part where you just second guess yourself and continue to ask “is this the right decision?” that’s a lesson i need to learn. decide and realize that it can be good and bad, but you roll with it. i’ve always been a weak decision-maker. growing up, i never really had to decide for myself much. my parents decided for me most of the time. so i eventually got used to deferring it to others and just go with the flow. i really have to break that habit.

this week has been a lot of those. i decided that i want to feel better and talked it out with my doctor. i decided on what i want for my career in the next 3-4 years and it’s very exciting in a way. i feel the same way during my early 20s when i worked on my career. i’ve been skating for the past few years letting things just go with it. let others decide and go with it. now, i’m taking it on. let’s see where this leads but it’s going to be challenging and fun for sure.

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Adulting vs Millennial In me.

I am faced in a situation where my mind and my heart are not on the same page when it come to deciding. If we just based it on a cost-benefit analysis and look at the facts, the decision is so clear for Choice A overwhelmingly. However, the case of Choice B is very strong because of some sentimental and emotional aspects. They are making things tough for me to just bite the bullet and go for Choice A. The millennial in me that seeks purpose, value and impact screams Choice B, and the mid-30 year old in me that looks into the long term goals and stability is for Choice A.

This is really tearing me apart because I know the bitter pill is to go for Choice A and make the most out of it. I need to stop looking at absolutes, and look at things objectively and accept compromises. Then move forward. Easier said than done, right?

manila, manila…

After 2 years, I visited Manila once again. Going to Manila has always been stressful for me. I do not consider it as pure relaxing vacation, but a duty to maintain ties with family and friends. For this trip, the main purpose was to attend Cookie’s wedding. My schedule worked with her wedding date and it was just the right length of time to spend it in Manila. I wished I have a weekend though so I could have traveled somewhere else. It will be something I will consider in my next trip to the PH.

Some notable things that happened in this trip

  • Cookie’s wedding was beautiful! I wish the weather was less humid during the day though!
  • it was sheer luck that Trisha is also in Manila during my trip so I was able to spend some time with her and the other Dabuzz folks.
  • I was supposed to head to Baguio with the parents, but they begged off form it. It was probably for the best because my aunt passed away that Sunday. If we pushed thru with the trip, we would have headed back earlier.
  • I stayed in an AirBnB in Ortigas and a hotel in Makati during some of the days where I know I will be spending with friends and I might get home late. The two places I found were pretty good and I will most likely repeat the same thing when I visit in the future.
  • I probably gained a bit of weight and lost some muscle because of my diet and the lack of any gym workout.

NYC and Authenticity

I had an awesome time in New York. I was able to explore NYC before and after my training in Crotonville. I still cannot see my self living there because of all the chaos and expensiveness but it’s a city that has everything indeed. I still have a lot of things to do so I will definitely return here some day.

My training was so great. Even if it’s a leadership training, I learned a lot. Usually, I feel like these kinds of trainings are good for exposure and networking. However, this training really made me face things that I didn’t want to hear and learned some things new. If I can sum it up…

– my decisions are shaped by my personal values.

– my self-perception can be different with how others perceive me.

– realizing my values, strengths, emotional triggers can help me be more successful as a leader.

I feel so energized and ready to get back to work. There are concrete things that I need to face and work on and I am happy I was given the opportunity to face them and ultimate address them.

New york

I'm off to New York for my first GE Crotonville training. I decided to go on a Saturday so I can have an extra day in NYC. Irene and I will meet up on Friday after my training for more NYC exploration.

I'm very excited about this training because I know it's going to be an experience. How I will play this out is the unknown. As a natural introvert, dealing with people drains the hell out of me. This is magnified with new people because my brain goes overdrive to make sure there's no dead air, and I don't look like a loser.

Anyway, that's tomorrow until Friday. Today, I will meet up with Eric and get my Shake Shack fix. That's already a big win.

Montreal

When I left Montreal today, I was ready to go home to Cincinnati. It's not because I do not like Montreal because it's such a beautiful city. But, I never felt at home here. Maybe because I knew it was a solo vacation and I felt like a stranger in a sea of French-speaking Québécois.

Food & Sights

The trip was mostly driven by food. I would look for places to eat and hope that there's some touristy stuff do there. I think the only place that I really went out of the way was the Olympic Park where there's really nothing much to do but see a sliver of history. Two of the places were the gems of this food trip. The first was Le Robin Square, and the other was L'Avenue. Thank you Yelp for the recommendations! I also tried poutine in Poutineville but my low expectations held true. Potato dishes are not my thing. On my birthday, I almost panicked because my planned Italian place Amarone was closed for business. Boo Yelp! I tried 2 other places but they were either closed or too busy. Good thing I found one near my hostel in the Gay Village and I had linguine for dinner.

What I like about Montreal is that there are just really a few places to go to so the amount of time I spent in the city is just right. On Thursday, I walked a bit in downtown and Notre Dame until I settled at Le Robin Square. On Friday, I walked to L'Avenue for a brunch lunch. Then, I walked to Mount Royal and to the Museum of Fine Arts. I walked around downtown until I reached UQAM area for my pasta search but ended up deeper in the Gay Village. On Saturday, I had my poutine and then rode the metro to the Olympic Park area and then returned to Old Montreal. I just went out Friday and Saturday night in the Village. Friday was to check out Sky Dance Club and Saturday was just walking around St. Catherine with all the street performers! It was such a treat.

Hostel

It's my first time to stay at a hostel. Alexandrie was one of the more economical options I had in the Village. I procrastinated booking my place so I ended up here. It's not that terrible because I booked a private room where I share a bathroom. The good news is that the folks in the other room left Friday morning, and the next person in the room arrived Saturday night. So I had the place pretty much myself. My days were pretty packed so I did not really mingle much with the other hostel travelers. Would I book another stay in a hostel? If I can find a slightly more expensive hotel option, I'd go for the hotel. I'd pay extra for the comfort and security and do a proper vacation. But, it's not something I will say no to if I'm with group of friends. I think it's more fun with other people.

Solo Traveling

I have always had mixed feelings about traveling solo. I love the flexibility and being able to just control my schedule on my own, but it can also be very lonely because you cannot share the experience, or talk to someone. I'm introversion is such a pain at times because I just put on my earphones and walk around the city. I was averaging 22K steps a day so I did a ton of walking. Maybe next time, I will travel with someone.

Mental note: ask around who wants to travel with when planning vacations.