Monday, January 27, 2014

Glimpse of the Past : Relevant to this day

Once upon a time, I wrote in my website (which is free! - an article that is still significant to me and perhaps to everyone to this day. I wrote this during a time when I had a misunderstanding with my family. It was not a jab towards them but it was more of a reminder to myself that we all deserve to be happy.

I'd like to share it to you..

We are the architect of our lives

Posted by Kareen Grace on January 15, 2013 at 9:15 PM Comments comments (1)    

I once posted in my facebook status that "If I cannot be anything you need, I cannot be anything you want". I want to somehow explain or elaborate on this. This fact just came to me in the midst of an emotional struggle with one of the most important persons in my life.

Each of us has our own principles, views, and beliefs in life. Yes, we do ask for comments or advises from people we trust to somehow help us in coming up with better (sometimes, less evil) decisions. But at the end of the day, we come up with decisions that greatly reflects what we believe, what we stand for, what we strongly feel about. Those decisions may not always be favorable and agreeable to the people around us and to the people who love us. But it is our decision. If anything goes wrong or if in the end, we realize it was a wrong turn, nobody will fall for it but yourself. Unless you base all your decisions to what other people may feel, may think, and may say. Of course, it is a given that we must not harm other people and that we should live harmoniously with the world. But when it comes to your own happiness, will you let others decide for you?

Our family only wants the best for us, yes. Our family does not want to see us struggle, yes. They do not want to see us harmed or hurt, yes. Simply because they love us. But I don't think influencing our decisions about the major areas in our lives goes with it. This is not about being self-centered or being rebellious. This is not about proving that you are your own person. This is about asserting your right to happiness. And our family is supposed to be the first persons to support us. They may view things differently but they should still be there for you no matter what your choices are. For as long as you do not destroy yourself, for as long as you do not harm others, for as long as you do not waste your life, your family must be able to respect your decisions.

Perhaps, they see things on a different perspective. And we should understand that. We should respect that. They have valid reasons to be concern about how we manage our affairs. But I don't think it is right to be greatly influenced by it to the point that you will lead a life they want you to have but not the life you want to live. If they want to change you and the way you see things, and you will allow them to do it, you might as well be imprisoned. You will become a remote-controlled (but completely capable of thinking) fellow. You will never be happy. You will never be free. And it is a very awful situation to be in. Unless you're still a teenager, I think your family has a valid reason to guide you to the right path.  I think teenagers are misguided by what they see around them nowadays but that's a different story.

My point is, as adult, we should be able to decide for ourselves without having to seek for the approval of our family. Because at the end of the day, what's at stake is our happiness. We should freely create our lives. we should be the architect of our own lives. We should be the one to define our lives. Not other people. Not anyone.Too cliche' but it rings truth.
And our family should never turn their backs on us if we choose to do so.
In my case, they never will.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Online Status: How Influential is it?

The world at present times is, arguably, attached to social networking sites. Most people can't stand not checking their accounts on a daily basis. Others even make a living for it. Among the most famous social networking sites are Twitter, Instagram, and of course, Facebook. There are also other sites that allows for virtual "social interaction" such as gmail chat, yahoo chat, youtube, and yes, even gaming sites like LOL (League of Legends), among others.

It can no longer be denied that the internet technology has enveloped the world at the fastest pace possible. One is no longer "connected" without it. Businesses, in order to march apace with the technological development, have to up their marketing efforts online to "belong" and to remain relevant. And especially, to gather more patronage.

Of course, what I am saying here is a known fact although I cannot firmly say that these observations have scientific or statistical back up. I am merely stating the fact before my eyes.

So anyway, I am not about to devout this blog to discussing how technology plays in each of our lives. That is beyond my brain cells can weave since I am no expert. But I will be stating here my observations on how these sites, particulary FACEBOOK reveal much of ourselves and how we are as a person and as members of our ever dynamic society.

Well, I'm sure you love to post facebook statuses. "Status" as far as I know, is supposed to be the expression of our current state of mind or the written expression of our current thoughts. Most often, this facebook service serves as the avenue of most people to tell their facebook friends what occupies their time, what they are doing, who they are with, etc. Facebook also allows the users to post photo statuses which I really think encouraged the "selfie" revolution.

These statuses, most of the time, elicit heartwarming feelings, laugh, fear, and even annoying feeling within me. I am not sure if you feel the same but there are several statuses that really irk me. Although, of course, it is not up to me what other people want to post on their personal space. Afterall, it's really personal and to be technical about it, it's protected by the free speech clause of the Philippine Constitution or the universal freedom of expression. However, there are things that I strongly think that we should not post since it might work to our disadvantage.

To make it simpler, I will be enumerating, in no particular order, all these types of statutes that really grind my gears and why they do so.

1. FOOD PHOTOS. Okay, it might be too shallow for me to be annoyed by statuses flooded with mouth-watering food but what the heck, it really does. Online community termed it "food pornography". It irritates me because it doesn't help me resist my urge to eat. It even escalates my desire. Of course, apart from that reason, there is this crappy and famous reason that not all people have the capacity to eat the food you eat and you should be sensitive enough not to flaunt your lavish food spending when others can barely eat three times a day.

2. SELFIES. I am not really irked by anyone posting selfies. It's the "in" thing now. What irritates me is when the post becomes TOO FREQUENT, like on a daily basis. Come on. How many times do we need to see your pretty face, your sexy body, your gorgeous get-up in a day or week? We get it. 

3. OOTD (Outfit of the Day). Unless you are a fashion icon or a celebrity endorsing clothing lines, will you please stop posting what you wear everyday? Well, I guess it is acceptable for you to do so when you really look gorgeous. Whatever.

4. PERSONAL QUARRELS. It is of no major concern to us whether you are angry at your boyfriend, friends, or family. I think it is TOO PERSONAL to share the details of your quarrels with anybody. Most especially, it becomes too "scandalous" when you tag the person you are angry with. Aside from the fact that it won't help solve the problem (it might even deepen it), it will also be very difficult for you to reconcile. It might even breed extreme hatred. Words can kill relationships that could still be saved if you control yourself and not inform your facebook friends how angry you are with the other party and how "stupid" they are. Worst case scenario, you might be held liable for slander or libel. That would really suck.

5. REJOICING BECAUSE OF THE MISFORTUNES OF OTHERS. It is the height of human insensitivity when people post something that rejoices for the misfortunes of other people. You cannot just say that "they deserve" what they are going through because you certainly don't know shit about what they really are going through and nobody deserves nor loves to be under a very unfortunate situation. You would not want to hear other people saying that they are happy about your bad situation, right?

6. FALSE NEWS. You should refrain from posting news that are unverified because this might cause panic, public outrage, or public disorder. You cannot just post without personal knowledge or unverified information as critical as "there is a tsunami warning" or "there is a bomb somewhere that is about to explode" when there is really none. Leave that to the experts or to the proper agencies to announce. Unless you are a reporter, I think you may do so as a call of duty BUT of course, it must be a verified report otherwise, it will be a breach of responsible journalism.

7. SCANDALOUS PHOTOS OR GROSS PICTURES. Really? I don't think I need to explain why this is included in my list.

8. SEX VIDEOS OR PORNOGRAPHIC VIDEOS. Obviously, Facebook is not the proper venue for you to reveal your sexual perversion or your sexual tendencies. There are people who cannot tolerate these materials because it is repugnant to their sense of morality. If you are posting these kind of videos to humiliate a person, beware because we already have a law that punishes acts relating to making and disseminating sex videos online. 

9. SPREADING GOSSIPS. Never use your facebook accounts to spread negative gossips. Even if it were true, you are not authorized to spread them. Learn to value and understand the 'It's-none-of-your-business" concept. You got time for that? It really is a waste of time to talk about other people's personal affairs. Better talk about ideas or good deeds or any positive thing. The world might become better because of you.

10. GRAMMAR. I cannot personally claim that my grammar is perfect. There are some errors in my sentence construction or the appropriateness of terminologies I use. But I can say that I am coherent. Please be more conscious on how you construct your sentences. You will become a laughing stock to your friends if you post something only you can understand. Although, that takes some nerve and a little over confidence but please, if you cannot really say it properly, "mag tagalog ka na lang"..or "mag bisaya na lang ka..". You know what I'm saying?

At the end of the day, it is still your decision whatever you want other people to know about you through your social networking accounts. But regardless of the fad or the craze and regardless of the evolution of social interaction as we know it in the midst of internet age, we should remain responsible and accountable for all our deeds. We should maintain that high standard of morality in all our dealings. We should retain the values that our parents taught us and instilled upon us. Your attitude online will really reflect your character and your personality. People will judge you by how you manage and carry yourself online.

Employers now are marching apace with the technology and are now considering your online behavior in determining whether you will fit their requirements and whether you deserve to be part of their organization.

Truly, the virtual world plays a big role in our lives now. Even the number of "likes" in your posts becomes your validation that you belong and that you are accepted. It has become one of the affirmations that you have many friends and that there are numerous people who like you. Admit it or not, the facebook "likes" boost your confidence that you are significant to the lives of others. Gone are the days where we FREQUENTLY meet our friends face to face and talk the real talk not just through online messages or "comments" or "likes" or "shares".

Social Networking sites are good tools in order for us to remain connected with our friends and families especially those who are living far from us. It even assist us in doing or performing our business transactions. But we should put a certain limit to it. Lahat ng sobra ay masama.