For as far as I can remember, I’ve always loved writing.
I enjoyed paragraph writing in grade school. There was always a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when I felt a paragraph was complete, when I felt every word I used was the right one. It was simultaneously art and science for me.
This love for word construction continued throughout my high school and college stints. Writing assignments wouldn’t feel like homework. I would volunteer for writing tasks across my different subjects, projects, and the clubs I belonged to.
In my first year after graduation, I taught english for a year in my alma mater and loved every minute of it.
Then I went corporate. Suddenly, my love for writing had no outlet.
I would get chances to write – typically copy for recruitment materials or job descriptions or disciplinary memos. I would get to write a lot of academic reports, too. But this wasn’t really writing for me. It was…work. There was no soul nor creativity involved.
From 1998 to 2011, I buried my writing. It became a hidden talent.
In my mind, it wasn’t really a big deal. It wasn’t practical in a sense that it didn’t put food on the table.
But I would feel a thorn on my side when I met with writers. I would feel all existential when I would read something that would resonate with me.
After my great leap and the euphoria which followed when things started to fall into place, there was a strong feeling that I should give something back.
The first medium I automatically thought of was, you guessed it…writing.
And so I wrote my first Juan Great Leap post.
It has been amazing ever since. I had reconnected with my lost love.
This reacquaintance has led to such amazing things.
This blog has been such a blessing for me. It has introduced and re-introduced me to people that are now significant parts of my life. It has broadened my horizons. It has blessed me by letting me into the entrepreneurial journeys of some extraordinary people. Though I have not made a centavo off of the blog, I have been introduced to investors and business partners by the blog. And I just cannot explain the joy I feel when someone emails to say that a particular piece has helped them. I don’t think there’s any greater joy for a writer – or any type of worker, for that matter – than when their work is appreciated.
Let me tell you about my friend Mela.
Multiple people were telling me: “Have you seen her dance? Maiiyak ka!”
I found that statement peculiar. To the point of tears? Really?
Finally, I had my chance to see her in action. In one Living Hope concert, she did a beautiful interpretative dance. Now mind you, I have no special appreciation nor eye for dancing, but there it went.
But I guess that’s what we feel when we observe someone tap into her God-given gifts and isn’t afraid of showing it to the world.
We feel awe. We feel alive. We feel inspired.
My theory? We feel God.
I feel all of us are blessed this way. We each have been blessed a “super power” of sorts, which, if we aren’t afraid of using and developing, can just MOVE people. Even to tears.
Alas, society, “practicality”, and fear can prevent us from exercising it.
I remember writing about Ope.
She was a Psychology graduate looking for “HR” work. So we hired her as an HR practitioner. Soon though, we saw that she was volunteering for all the design work that was available (and doing it for no extra pay) – brochures, websites, posters…
Quoting from my previous post:
While she would do good work with her HR-related responsibilities, her design work would always elicit oohs and ahs from everyone in the workplace. It was plain to see what her passion was.
She’s now the young CEO of Rocket Concepts – a design company.
And readers – please don’t let your college course dictate what you do in life because you need to “exercise what you learned.” We selected our courses in our teens – a time when most of us were still confused as to who we are. Follow your heart. Pray and discern.
Tapping into our hidden talents always lead to great things.
Can you paint? Act? Build things with your hands? Do you speak well? Can you counsel well? Design well? Can you cook? Design cakes? Carve wood? Write plays? Play an instrument? Speak different languages well? Teach well?
More importantly, when engaged in this hidden art of yours, does the time just pass by like the wind? Do you feel an inner joy?
In each of us, God has instilled incredibly moving, tremendous, awe-inspiring gifts.
Don’t let them be hidden under the water, away from plain sight. This not only robs you of opportunities, it also robs others from being beneficiaries.
Release the Kraken.
The opportunity cost of not doing so is incalculable.