GRATITUDE FOR GOOD
A Blog by Gratitude Alliance
by Ayen dela Torre
Confucius said that if you choose a job you love, you never have to work a day in your life. But as we know, discovering your life’s purpose entails a lot of work. You can do what you love now only to find out that you want to do something different tomorrow. Even with a college degree and “real world” experiences under your belt, you can still have no clue what it is exactly that you want to do.
Fresh out of college, I was offered a promising job in one of the top multinational companies in my country. I accepted the offer and for almost two years, I was happy with the pay, the people and the plan they had for me. But something was missing; I wasn’t sure about my purpose.
I applied for an international scholarship on a whim and I was chosen. I was then confronted with the choice: staying with my comfortable career vs. trying out a unique experience that could potentially be a once in a lifetime opportunity. I chose the latter. I quit my job and booked a ticket to study at International People’s College in Denmark, supposed to be the happiest country on earth.
My choice led me to experience things I never thought I would. I made friends with 60 amazing human beings from 31 countries from the ages of 18 to 69. We were living, partying and learning under one roof. We didn’t have exams or grades but we discovered important things about ourselves, the world and life in general.
Being at IPC gave me the time and space to rediscover things that I am good at and things that I’m passionate about. I was singing on stage, taking photos of strangers and building my own NGO ideas using scratches of brown paper. It can be argued that some of these lessons were not useful to my resume but I was relearning what makes me happy. And that counts a lot in my book.
Instead of constantly searching for who I’m supposed to be, I gave myself a break. Although it wasn’t planned, it turned out to be just what I needed. After IPC, I promised myself that I would follow my passions, even if it’s not considered conventional or what is expected of me.
I pursued my love for film production, from patting faces with oil films to eventually taking photographs in the field. I exposed myself to community building by tagging along to my parents’ work. And I discovered Global Gratitude Alliance. I knew instantly that I wanted to become a part of this community.
Working for Global Gratitude Alliance allows me to combine my passion for writing and my advocacy towards social change. I love that the organization builds on partnerships rather than just providing charity. It understands that every individual is different and that there are needs that go beyond the physical necessities such as the need for trauma healing. The people in this community give with gratitude in their hearts, empowering women and children to transform their own lives and the lives of their communities. I am absolutely thrilled to give my own contribution to the cause.
By most standards of success, I clearly haven’t made it yet. But I’m putting myself out there, enjoying the ride and starting to define for myself what it means to do what you love. I have a lot of things to be grateful for.