Why I Write ...

Purely as a form of expression to the emotions that run riot in my life at different junctures. This blog has seen several title revisions that also reflect the state of being and evolution I am constantly in. If one were to remain stagnant in hope of never changing their temporal present, one will awaken someday to much regret. Life is about living, evolving and adapting to the constant changes all around us.

My spot on the web is essentially a journey along with my monologue ramblings of my coherent mind accompanied by the incoherent thing called life. Read me if you like ... if you don't it is not the end of the world. I am at the very least a believer in humility lifts us further than pride.

Happy trails

20 April 2009

Service Unto Others ... Apr 20, 2009

I've taken a long sabbatical from many things I'd enjoyed doing in my youth.  Some of it was as an unspoken response to the ex's disapproval lest I unwittingly outshine him in public.  Most often it is because even though I might be passionate about something, I found it hard to be doing something in the company of others who were merely there because it made them feel indispensable.

The one important thing people must realise when embarking into the arena of service unto others is that the service we do is not about how many pats on the back we might get from others around or the number of awards one might be conferred via one's so call service.

This is a voluntary giving of one's time, talents and efforts.  But from what I have noticed from long before, the front liners of most associations or groups, most are there for the glamour of being seen rubbing shoulders with dignitaries or politicians.  Jostling to be in the pictures taken by the media and such self indulgent satisfaction from seeing their faces in the news.

I mean yes we should not judge the motives of those who give their time.  But time and again, I have seen those who really deserve all the accolades and awards continue to do as their calling in the shadows.  The real hands on service is rendered by these few.  The rest are there at the peak of the media and attention seeking strut and pose and give rhetorical speeches (quite like our politicians).  The real heros are forgotten and often in the shadows.

My distancing from all aspects of social service or volunteer works came to a halt.  Not because I lost my heart or caring nature, but I found that try as I might to ignore all the politicking and one upmanship, it eventually sapped you of your passion to help.  I take my hat off to those who stick in there, in the shadows making significant change and leaving their mark .... because their hearts and souls were in their work 200%. 

One of the basic fundamentals of offering one's time and service is that the recipients are often extremely clued in as to who is the glam seeker and who is genuine.  One cannot fake one's heart.  We can train ourselves to portray a caring personality, but small gestures are telling.  I too can read very quickly the fakes from the real deals. 

Being in the company of so many inspiring people, I have learnt too how to reach out to people.  In my own little way, I am sometimes I am their "BEFRIENDER" line.   It has often struck me as strange that people can open themselves to me.  But I have told, my sincerity in listening to them makes them feel they can trust me. 

I find that very complimentary.  I learn from each of their experiences, I use the experiences of others as examples when listening or advising and I do feel like I helped if it means the other person can feel better from their sharing with me.

One thing I never do is enter something I feel I cannot contribute to or commit to.  In the recent years, I have often turned down invitations to be a part of programs that I would readily jumped into in the past.  Because time is of the essence and I have so little of it.  What time I have, I've to juggle it somewhat between work and my girls.

I feel the time has come to return to doing things I feel fulfill me.  And recently I have said yes to some invitations because I feel I can contribute.  I may not have a string of letters behind my name proclaiming to be the best in my field but I am an ever evolving student in the University of Life - this is one school you never graduate from until the day they commit your mortal remains to ashes.

And in a few short meetings, I have come to acknowledge that old habits die hard.  I cannot bring myself to be a fake.  If I jump in, I jump in whole, if not I remain outside doing my own little acts of service when I can - because to me my conscience being clear at the end of each day knowing I did what I did to the best of my abilities and to the sincerest of intentions. 

Because someone once told me, never put conditions or expectations, do so because you want to.  It's a harder done than said sorta piece of advice, but when you learn (which I am) to live by this simple principle, things start to look a whole lot better ...

So if you're thinking to volunteer, as much as volunteers are welcomed everywhere because of the short of hands, please first analyse your reasons as to why you want to volunteer.  If you think there's a stairway to heaven easily built, then perhaps this is not where you ought to be.  Most of the causes you volunteer and give service to, they need people with good open hearts not those with self promoting agendas.

Perhaps if our politicians learnt this, they might begin to serve the people in their capacity much better too ... but alas this is Malaysia ... everything is but a sandiwara and a wayang kulit.

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