I looked this quote up a few minutes ago. It was posted back in March 2009, and got virtually no notice. So one of those “sides of the brain” of mine (I don’t know the right from the left, or so I have been told) says to me, “why write about this again, Dave, they obviously didn’t like it then?” The other half, the side of my brain that is the patron saint of lost causes, says, “This isn’t about popularity, and you aren’t a politician. People need to hear this message, no matter what their nationality, no matter were they live, and no matter what their thoughts about living in the Philippines.”
The “lost cause” side won out, so here comes dose number two. I am indebted for this introductory quote to a lady name of Naomi Dunford. Naomi lives in Canada and she has her head screwed on straight when it comes to getting down to the nitty-gritty of things and realizing who we, as citizens of the world, really are, as opposed to the mere shell of what we ought to be that has become accepted as our station in life.
Remember what I posted a couple days ago with the line, “Remember who you are, and act accordingly.” Did you think that was religious in nature? Far from it my friends, far from it. The truths inside that line of thought transcend any of the various labeled filing cabinets of religious dogma we spend our energy arguing about, believe me.
Disclaimer. Naomi sells things. I don’t sell any of her products, although I suspect they are good. This is not an affiliate (commission-type) link. I make nothing from it, and you don’t have to sign up for anything or buy anything just to learn who you really are.
Take a Hummer full of average self-made millionaires. Strand them in the desert. Strip them of their money. Take away everything they own. Rob them of their connections, their networks, their families.
Ten to one they’re millionaires again in less than five years.
Can you be a millionaire in five years?
As it stands right now, probably not. So what is it that’s different about John Q. Millionaire? Why can he take his kids to Euro Disney and you can’t?
Because he depends on himself and the rest of the world depends on, well, the rest of the world.
We used to be self-reliant.
For 40,000 years of human history, we depended on ourselves. We were part of a small network of people who helped each other out, but mainly we fixed our own clothes, cooked our own meals and traded our own chickens to make our way in this world.
We were Jacks of all trades. When our roof broke, we didn’t hope we had money left on our Visa to pay a specialist to come out and fix it — we cut down a tree and went up the ladder. If the wheat crop was poor, we always had the cows. Wife took in some sewing work, husband ploughed the fields. If one thing went wrong, we didn’t cross our fingers and pray the big man down the lane would waltz in to take care of us.
Sometime around the industrial revolution, we gave the responsibility of feeding our families to a bunch of old guys in suits that cost more than our car. Or horse, as the case may have been.
Rich people came in and, as part of an income diversification strategy, decided to build some factories. We started to specialize. We became widget stampers, widget joiners, widget movers. Our self-identity became one of what we did to which widgets for eight or 10 or 12 hours a day.
Western culture became one of efficiency. How could we do it faster? How could we make it easier? How could we work it cheaper?
Then, on April Fools’ Day, 1913, Henry Ford added a conveyor belt to the whole process and generalism went to hell.
Flash forward 95 years and we live in a world of 10-page job descriptions that itemize exactly what we do — and more importantly, what we don’t do. We put cute little comic strips in our cubicles that scream “Not my department”. We do the same thing, every day, for years at a time. Optimally, we do our one thing and one thing only more efficiently than any other person in town.
And in order to ensure we have time for all of this efficiency, we have outsourced the rest of our lives to other specialists. Specialists grow our food and make our clothes and educate our children while we go be specialists for someone else.
We believed we were making things easier. Instead we were handing over every tiny scrap of personal power we had left. …
If any of you reading this are agonizing over a job (or lack of one), or losing sleep over paying bills, or worried over the decision about moving to the Philippines or not moving to the Philippines, or earning a living in the Philippines or going abroad to earn a living … give your self a huge Christmas present that will not add one penny to your credit card bill … stop agonizing.
You have the power to decide what you truly want to do and make it happen. You don’t need the government to give you permission, you don’t need some insurance company to tell you that you can or can not, you aren’t “powerless” because you have children still in school or a house that won’t sell, or a pension plan that won’t send your annuity overseas, or a car lease you can’t break, or (my God the excuses I have heard over the years … and every excuse a justification not to make a decision, not a ‘reason’ at all). Decide what is right for you, and then do it. It is just that simple … and it is extremely liberating I will tell you that from personal experience.
Now, after over 1,000 words, what has this got to do with my title, “What I learned so far this Christmas”? Plenty. I’ve been talking with a number of US-based folks who are here visiting for Christmas, and boy have I gotten an earful about why they want to be here full-time (now or in the future) and many of the utterly, totally bogus reasons that are holding them back. In case you may have gotten the idea that I hate Fox News, you are absolutely correct. Throw off your chains, my countrymen, life is far, far better than the current propoganda would have you believe.
I could go on 😉 (no surprise, eh?), but long posts are great for search engines, but lousy for readers to read, so I will continue this tomorrow. In the meantime, if you chose to come back, be ready for a pop quiz (here’s the questions in advance,so you can prepare to boost your GPA on the sly) …don’t say I never gave you nothing:
- Do you want to retire in the Philippines?
- Do you want to move to the Philippines and earn a living here?
- Are you undecided about either of those first two questions?
- Are you searching for a job in the Philippines?
- What is the single, most insurmountable obstacle that is holding you back, right now. today?
Now that we have some interesting questions, Tune in tomorrow and we’ll see if there is any chance of answers that match up.