About three weeks ago, I drove more than 1,800 kilometers (about 1100 miles) from Vancouver, Canada to San Francisco and back for 10 days.
I wrote this blog in Ashland, Oregon. It was our 4th day driving. Here is a map picture of where we have driven.
Vancouver, Canada to Astoria Oregon (Astoria is the first town in the State of Oregon after the State of Washington via Highway 101)
Astoria, Oregon to Florence, Oregon (scenic drive by the beach)
Florence, Oregon to Ashland, Oregon (Ashland is the last major town in the State of Oregon before the State of California via Interstate 5)
If you will ask me two words to describe how are we doing at this point of our trip – SIMPLY AMAZING!
A week before we left Vancouver, I can’t help but count the time and distance that I will be driving. I was a bit uneasy because I will be driving alone. I asked myself – will I be okay? Will I fall asleep while driving? Will it be boring?
In addition, my wife and I would mull over the more important matters like leaving our sons behind, our business, our clients, our community events, and our financial obligations and so on!
When I think about these things, I could not avoid apprehensions.
But when I start thanking God and counting my blessings like;
Thank God for blessing us with two sons who are now responsible adults who can take care of themselves;
Thank God for blessing us with very good business colleagues who we can rely on if we need their help while we are away;
Thank God for blessing us with clients who trust us and never gets tired of introducing us to other people;
Thank God for blessing us with community servants who we can rely on to continue doing our work;
And most specially, we thank our God who always exceed His provisions so we can take care of our financial obligations and enjoy more of these amazing vacations and so on; life becomes exciting!
When you have an exciting life, you make each day count!
You can change many things in your life only if you can change the way you perceive things. Like a poster I saw in Oregon that says, “Don’t count the days of your life but rather make each day count.”
I have missed many opportunities in my life because I was counting the days and not making each day count.
When I was younger, I would always say these words on our way home after a fun vacation – “back to reality.”
Today, I discovered that I was not being fair to myself when I utter these words because the vacations I took are not fantasies – they are not an escape from reality. My vacations brings me good memories to inspire and empower me in the present.
I found out that when you go for a vacation to simply escape, going “back to reality” can easily consume you.
Remember, vacations are not an escape to reality – it is an experience. Your experience should make you excited everyday which helps you make each of your day count.
Yes, reality can sometimes be painful but these pains should make you a better person.
From my old blogs, I have shared many painful experiences in investing in the stock market. But even though I have bad experiences, I continue to invest in stocks because now I can say that I have matured from the pains I experienced from the past. Today, from the lessons I’ve learned, I know when to be cautious and when to be aggressive in my investments. Before I count my losses but now I make my every investment count.
So whether it’s about money or faith or simply dealing with your everyday life, for each day that comes, make it count.
By the way, do you why some people count their days?
People who count their days are the people who are trapped in a routine. If you do things routinely, you cannot help but to watch the clock ticking until it’s time to get out. They are like prisoners who counts the days until they get released.
I was able to experience this in my first job as a records clerk employee at Caritas Manila. My job was simple; if someone needs a record, I pull the file out from the filing cabinet and when someone returns it, I return it in their proper place.
Considering I’m an expert DJ at that time playing records, this is definitely not what I want to do but it puts money in my pocket to feed my single, young and free lifestyle!
Anyway, when I time-in at 8am, I would start counting the hours, the minutes and the seconds until 5pm. Apparently, some of us are doing the same thing. Thirty minutes before time-off, excitement would fill the office and everyone can’t wait to go home. The next day, the same routine happens again.
It’s a pity to know how people feel so disempowered to leave their routine simply because they think they have no way to out. Their routine has become their security – their comfort zone. For them, it is the most comfortable place to be.
But you know what, even inside a routine, you can do something special to make your day count. Let me tell you how I made my routine exciting.
During my vacant hours, I started doing some animation in my computer to promote our department. I work in the CREDIT department. It’s not credit as in accounting work. Our department do the research and analysis, computerization, automation and record keeping for Caritas Manila’s social works. I cannot remember the formal meaning of CREDIT but I do remember the bosses calling us Circle of Rational Eccentrics Doing Irrational Tasks – CREDIT (we were all wacky but we all do a job well done).
Doing work that is outside my job description made my routine exciting! I started to work as if I’m part of something bigger rather than simply being the records clerk.
Instead of counting hours, I made each day count!
And this is also my wish for you – that you may break free from any routine that you’re trapped in – to stop counting your days and start making every day count!
God is the greatest!