Eid Al Fitr 2018

Eid Mubarak to our Muslim friends!

I miss the Eid Al Fitr festival in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Communities and families usually gather to mark the start of Eid al-Fitr with a meal.

Eid Mubarak is a traditional Muslim greeting used during festivals such as Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr.

The word Eid means celebration and Mubarak translates as blessed.

Therefore, people wish each other a blessed holiday by using this greeting.

I celebrated this special day today with a thanksgiving lunch hosted by a dear friend and a brother servant whose love and passion for providing financial investment advice goes beyond earning commission but a call to mission.

Eid Al Fitr 2018

Cheers to long life! To more years of loving and serving the Lord – my dear friends from Riyadh, KSA.

Bro. Rommel Orpiada said that a good financial advisor is driven by a mission and not only by commission. Or someone who has more concern on your welfare and benefits, and of your loved ones rather than just marketing the products. He/she is someone that you can trust and has a good background and discipline, education, trainings, skills and experience. He/she can advise you on risk management and capital preservation, and can provide a financial solution personalized to your needs.

He aims to empower OFW around the globe in spending their hard earned money efficiently and effectively.

If you need any assistance, please feel free to contact Bro. Rommel for a “Let’s talk!” meeting and call him at 09176557477.


During the SFC “Relentless” 25th International Conference, I finally met Bro. Donnie Ray Aquino, a fellow member of PICPA Riyadh Toastmasters Club (PRTC), a passionate communicator, a dedicated brother in SFC and a very talented fellow OFW from Oman.

I never had a chance to mentor him in toastmaster and he was full of wit. His charisma speaks for her gift of gab – a natural charmer.

He was a prominent humoruos speaker.

He joined the famous game shows like Game Ka Na Ba and Pinoy Henyo.

Recently, he joined Tawag ng Tanghalan as one of the contenders from Mindanao. It was an uphill battle but he fought hard. He did not win but the experience taught him to never surrender.


To feel truly confident, you need to really believe you are capable. The best way to get that belief is through using your skills and talents — by learning and practicing. Bro. Donnie did that with love.

I lauded his efforts to showcase his God-given talent whenever the opportunity arised.

Bro. Donnie, thank you for being fearless. Your self-confidence was an inspiration to many.

Win or lose, we are here for you. We are looking forward to your next endeavor. All the best!

Bro. Donnie’s confidence emanates from a place of truth.

Believing in yourself is the fire starter for success of almost any measure. But how do you develop that self-confidence?

According to the Dalai Lama, it’s simple: “Love brings self-confidence. Anger brings fear.”

Self-confidence, he says, comes from generosity, from thinking and caring about others.

If you live your life with a genuine concern for the well-being of others, you will feel better about yourself, and in turn, feel more confident.

This is who Bro. Donnie is.

Full of love and kindness, a true brother and a servant of God.


I think I always had an idea of what I wanted to be when I grew up, but I sort of tweaked it along the way. I knew I wanted to work in the field of education, but like most kids, I wasn’t exactly sure where I fit in.

When I was 7 years old, I wanted to be an agriculturist. At the age of 14, I wanted to do absolutely anything for the Philippines as a lawyer. By the time I was 18 years old, I wanted to be a journalist.

When I finally did grow up, I found myself working in a dead-end office job; this lasted for most of my 20s. Who was I to complain? I was making decent money, but I felt awfully unfulfilled.

I knew that I had what it takes to actually be an educator, but I was not sure exactly how to get there. And for a moment, I thought it was too late.

Until, I was given a chance to mentor young people few years back and I am still a work in progress.

Inspiring young people

The message of the Christian gospel is that there need not be any “has-beens” in God’s kingdom. He is the Lord of mercy who specializes in restoring his wayward people from their failures and dashed hopes. And He promises to be our partner in building a meaningful life of service to Himself and others.

After many years of struggling to get to where I am, I realized some very important things that I would like to share with you:

Never give up on your dreams.

Even if you kicked them out of the way because someone told you they were impossible, they’re still your dreams; you’ve merely set them aside.

Think back and remember the dreams you once had, whether it was to go to college or to become an animal rescuer or even to travel the globe. Your dreams have never truly gone away. If you work hard enough and do all of the necessary planning, you can achieve any goal that you set.

Learn to take risks and ignore all of the “what ifs.”
When I first started college, I had enough “what ifs” to build an entire country.

What if I’m too old? What if I can’t handle students? What if going back to school will be too much of a financial burden? What if, what if, what if…

I finally had the nerve to just kick the “what ifs” off of the boat and take the plunge into the sea of dreams. You can conjure up all of the “what ifs” that your mind will allow, but that energy is better spent working toward your goals.

I’m convinced many of us are tormented by “what ifs” in our lives. “What if I’d gone to the doctor sooner?” or “What if I’d not driven that route that day?” or “What if I’d been morally stronger?”

Alas, the “what ifs” plague us, but there’s nothing we can do to alter the course of the past. No one of us, no matter how strong, is strong enough to pull back the hands of time.

‘What If’ are two words, which have great power: the power to imprison the soul or to set it free – the choice is ours to make.


Back in college, Phineas Taylor (P.T.) Barnum was the creator of the phrase, “There’s a sucker born every minute”.

He was a master of manipulation according to my public relations professor – Mr. Roel S. Ramirez.

Barnum would use the press to attract customers through false advertising but in the movie ‘The Greatest Showman’, a tenacious side of the PR guru was shown.

A zealous dreamer and a loving family man portrayed beautifully by Hugh Jackman.

This film was filled with life lessons that will give anyone and everyone the much needed reminder that “you’re in this world with talent and purpose that nobody else has” and that it’s worth it to take risks, pursue your passion, and dream.


If you’re in need of a positive boost in your life that will leave you feeling empowered and ready to face the world amidst challenges, I highly suggest you watch ‘The Greatest Showman’!

Here are my favorite seven (7) life-changing quotes from the movie compiled by the determined dreamer blog:

1. “You don’t need everyone to love you, just a few good people.” -Charity Barnum

Charity is, by far, my favorite character in the movie. She’s extremely supportive of her husband but also knows how to stick up for herself and say the hard things to him that he needs to hear. When he’s at the height of his chase for praise and recognition, she wisely (and kindly) reminds him that he doesn’t need everyone to love him. He just needs a few good people.

2. “No one ever made a difference by being like everyone else.” – P.T. Barnum

The people who have made the most difference in the world have been the ones who have dared to be different, despite being told to conform. Think of Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King Jr., Malala Yousafzai, Mahatma Gandhi, and George Orwell. Their progressive acts that went against the culture of their day are the reasons why nations have improved for the better.

The message I took from this is to be my authentic self. There’s no way I’m going to make any difference in the world if I’m not authentic to who I am and what I know is right, even if that means disappointing some people.

3. “Men suffer more from imagining too little than too much.” – P.T. Barnum

This quote encourages me to never suppress my dreams because of fear of failure. The people who dare to dream big are the ones who accomplish what seems impossible.

So, be a dreamer. Be a doer. Never be so fearful of failure that you don’t allow yourself the privilege to dream big and accomplish your goals.

4. “When you’re careless with other people, you bring ruin upon yourself.” – Jenny Lind

I have a thing against Jenny Lind. In fact, I have a thing against anyone who knows someone is in a committed relationship but continues to disrespect the relationship. I’m in no way saying that P.T. Barnum shouldn’t have taken a step back (and definitely not traveled alone with this woman!), but I don’t have much respect for her either.

That being said, she definitely had a point when she said that being careless with other people brings ruin upon yourself. I so badly wanted P.T. Barnum to genuinely care about the people he’d hired to be in his show, but unfortunately, at first, he was just using them. He was being careless with them and their feelings, which eventually led to his downfall.

The quote was an important reminder to take time to show the people I love that I genuinely care about them.

5. “The noblest art is that of making others happy.” – P.T. Barnum

Making others happy (which should involve fighting for equality, protecting children, and creating other meaningful changes) truly is the noblest art there is!

6. “I wish for happiness like this forever.” – Charity Barnum

Charity Barnum was a true example of being happy with what you have. She grew up in a wealthy home, so she could have easily longed for the finer things in life. Instead, she was grateful for the things that mattered most – her husband and children.

At the beginning of the film, each family member was sharing a wish on the makeshift gift P.T. Barnum had brought home for his eldest daughter’s birthday. Even after P.T Barnum had lost his job and things seemed to be crumbling apart, Charity’s only wish was, “for happiness like this forever.” She knew the true meaning of happiness.

7. “Father, the world is changing, and I refuse to be a part of yours.” – Phillip Carlyle

I hear things about the world being a horrible place full of evil, but I can’t help but think that most of the evil in the world is done by those who are resisting the positive changes that are being made. The Greatest Showman shines a light on a problem that’s still present today: inequality. When Phillip’s father says, “Have you any shame?” after seeing him with Anne (Phillip’s father disliked that she was a colored girl), Phillip (Zac Effron) courageously states, “Father, the world is changing, and I refuse to be a part of yours.”


For 2018, I will start to dream again.

It has been a rough ride for the past years.

The challenges made me a stronger person and it will never stop me to face life with more optimism.

I will be making my dream or vision board soon.


One of the most powerful decisions I ever made was to take responsibility for my life, instead of just letting life happen to me.

Dream (or vision) board is more powerful than you think because it actually works!

Most successful people have one; Bo Sanchez, Sha Nacino, and Jack Canfield to name a few.

A Dream Board is something that will help you focus on your goal to make your mind focus on achieving it, it is a mind exercise that’s easy to do and so achievable. But what do you really need to put on your Dream Board? Simple. The things you want to feel. Well, it’s okay to put the things that you want, material things will inevitably always be there. Feelings on the other hand needs a lot of effort to get. You can’t really buy happiness, so the more your board focuses on how you want to feel like being inspired or confident, the more it will come into reality.

1. Daydream the things you’d like to achieve this year (or next year)

You have to first visualize what you really want in life, your goals and aspirations; the things that will truly make you happy. Imagine yourself living your life with the things you want this year; the more you want it, the more you’ll be motivated to do it.

2. Collect any form of motivational pictures and words

From old magazines, or anywhere you can find motivation. Sort those out first, before you put it all together.

3. Arrange them on whatever suits you

This is where you can start making your dream board! Make a collage out of it, make it visually appealing. Just put the things that are really important to you, it’s okay to get rid some of the things you’ve cut.

4. Paste them down

Glue, tape, or anything; you have to commit with your arrangement. And also, with the things you’ve put; if you’ve included that you’ll study hard to be a Dean’s Lister, then you have to really work hard to achieve it.

5. Make it more appealing

By writing words with your own penmanship, or pictures of people that inspire you like your family and friends. Also put some crafty stuff that will make it attractive yet inspiring, so you’ll be more motivated to look at it.

6. Take time to look at it everyday

To make it easier, put it exactly where you’ll see it everyday; even if you don’t look for it. If possible, review it before you leave the house or go to sleep. If you see it, you believe it, then you achieve it. Make a stand that everything that is written on your dream board will be a reality. You don’t have to do it all at once, take things slowly. One step at a time.

Always remember, the power is not in the dream or vision board but in what we do to make our vision a reality.

Because here is the Truth:

“Vision is merely a dream without action.” ~ Joel Barker