On Defining Goals – Am I losing Clarity?

This morning, I was watching the interview of David Letterman of Tina Fey on Netflix. Tina Fey is someone I look up to. What she does is not easy, and clearly, you need to be smart to create funny and (yet) deep comedy sketches that would serve a purpose. I would say that it would take me leaps and bounds before I could accomplish what she has accomplished. This is most definitely true also for the other entrepreneurs that I look up to. Looking at their lives, it seems so unfathomable to accomplish what they have accomplished.

So, i’ll just go back to my own little shell and strive to accomplish what I can accomplish. Looking at my life, and basing it on my own standards, I think I have done quite well for myself. I have a life that I love, businesses that give me the feeling of fulfilment and of course, a family that I love being with every single day.

This weekend, I was tasked by the CEO (coincidentally my husband; we are all tasked to come up with this) to come up with my life/career goals for the next 5 years. As I stared at my laptop and while trying to create columns to prettify my presentation, I couldn’t think of anything to place inside the table I created. I don’t know why I’m having such a hard time. I usually just dash away and write goals for myself like crazy.

All I could think of were two things — one is to save up for Zeeka’s tuition fee for next year and the other was to pay off my credit card debt. Both of these things were certainly goals, but they weren’t goals for myself. Well, okay, obviously these are responsibilities that I had, but it bothered me why I couldn’t think of goals that were specifically for myself.

I used to be so sure of what I wanted 3, 5 or 10 years from now. Now, I feel that I just want to get by and survive the year.

It may be because now, I’m more mature. MAYBE. I know that success doesn’t come overnight or even in a year. Success for me is doing small things that lead up to small changes that lead to bigger responsibilities that lead to a higher purpose.

I always wanted to help people create their own businesses. I always wanted to help people realize their full potential and be happy with how their life and careers or businesses are going. And based on personal experience, it takes time for this to happen. We (all including me) just have to be patient. Going back to my purpose of helping, that will take even a longer time for me to achieve.

And in terms of success, I don’t even know how to define that for me. My personal definition of success is happiness. So since this is my definition of success, can I write down continue to be happy as a personal goal? The businesswoman inside of me is urging me to write more SMART goals. Specific – how do I become more specific when it comes to happiness? Measurable – do we have levels of happiness? Actionable – Yes, I think this is actionable! Being happy is a choice. Realistic – it is! Time Bound – I need to constantly choose to be happy every single day!

I apologize for rambling. But I’m not sure if I should create more goals for myself. Or is it okay to be content with this kind of life that I have? Is being happy everyday an “enough” goal? 🙂

How about you? Are you clear with what your goals are?

Here’s Why Trumpet Playshop is the Best Summer Workshop for Kids

It’s summertime! Now that’s school’s officially over, moms like me are on the lookout for the best summer workshop for their kids.

Happily swimming in the pool

*Throwback to when Zeeka was a baby!!! 🙂

Summer workshops like arts and crafts, sports clinics, and music lessons are a great way for kids to explore their talents and skills while on break from school. It also helps develop kids’ resilience and confidence. And most of all, it improves their social skills and teaches them to learn life skills while gaining friends and having fun.

My little Zeeka is a natural in front of cameras. She loves singing and dancing, and her playful nature makes her so adorable. She even has her own Youtube channel and Facebook page where shoe does all things like review toys and tries mommy’s make up every once in a while.

Check out Zeeka singing here.

So every time summer comes, I try to expose her to different experiences to hone her talents, especially in performance arts.

And what better way to spend the summer than exploring her talents with Trumpets Playshop!

Trumpets Playshop was born as a product of TRUMPETS INC, the Philippine’s first Christian Theater company that has brought us beloved musicals like Joseph the Dreamer, The Little Mermaid, The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe, First Name, and The Bluebird of Happiness to name a few.

Led by Theater King, Audie Gemora, and business maverick Butch Jimenez, Trumpets Playshop aims to be TRUMPET INCs educational arm. Since 1993, Playshop has proven to be a home that kids of all ages return to each summer to discover and explore their talents in performing arts.

In twenty-five years, Trumpets Playshop has produced graduates that have made their marks in the local and international entertainment industry. These include teen icons Sam Concepcion and MTV VJ Tippy Dos Santos, and Asian pop superstars Christian Bautista and Karylle.

London’s West End has also seen the quality of Playshop alumni with talents such as Christine Allado who currently plays Peggy in ‘Hamilton’ and formerly Vanessa in ‘In The Height’. We also have two alumnae who played ‘Kim’ currently working alongside fellow Playshopper Red Concepcion, playing the role of ‘Engineer’ in the world-renowned musical, Miss Saigon.

Trumpets Playhouse also prides itself on their leaders and faculty who are now seen as leaders in the theater industry. Directors such as Jaime del Mundo and Freddie Santos, writers like Luna Inocian, Musical Directors like Rony Fortich, and choreographers like PJ Rebullida once called Playshop their homes and continues to be stalwarts of the institution.

To celebrate its 25th year, Trumpets Playshop decided to come full circle as it gathers all generations of Playshoppers. This year, they will be #ResoundingTrumpets and bringing back the old and celebrating the new with their upcoming workshops.

Trumpets Playshop will be conducting Children’s Theater for children 4-6 years old, and Children’s Musical Theater for kids 7-12 years old.

Teens aged 13 years old and above can also explore their talents and be guided by Trumpet’s brilliant staff and faculty with the Musical Theater Class.

Want to step it up a notch? Trumpets Playshop also has other classes you can enroll your kids into.

PLAYSHOP CREW

Toddler’s Hip-hop (4-6 years old) and Streetdance for Kids (7-12 years old with Dan Cabrera of Dance Royalties

Basic and Intermediate Hip Hop for Teens with Mike Arda of the A-Team (13 years and above)

PLAYSHOP POWER

Modeling led by Ms. Patty Betita and Public Speaking and Hosting by Ms. Kata Inocencio.

Because it’s their silver anniversary, Trumpets is also offering PLAYSHOP PREMIUM, where students will get acting lessons from renowned Theater Director, Jamie Del Mundo and audition techniques from the King of Theater himself, Mr. Audie Gemora.

Playshop will also be reviving one of its first classes, Sing and Dance, and introducing a new class for Mobile Photography alongside it.

Class begins on April 16 at three locations near you: The Shangri La Plaza Mall, Kidz City at SM Aura and at the Alabang Town Center.

Missed the registration? Onsite enrollment is also available.

So what are you waiting for? Sign up now and give your kids an awesome summer workshop experience they will never forget. Who knows, they might be part of Trumpet Inc.’s next production!

For class schedules, you may visit https://goo.gl/mcXHDF or call 901-4364, 818-1111 loc 254 or 0917-586- 4177.

Don’t forget to like and follow, and share TRUMPETS PLAYSHOP on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more updates and promos this summer.

See you there!

Childhood Depression and What You Can Do to Help

Two years ago, I wrote an article about depression and entrepreneurship. Looking back, nothing much has changed. Every now and then, I still get bouts of depression because of the challenges I face. But somehow it’s comforting to know that I’m not alone in this struggle.

Depression is a leading cause of ill health and disability in many countries all over the world. It is the most common mental health problem worldwide, with an estimated 300 million people suffering from it. Without the proper assistance, depression can lead to more complications, and ultimately death by suicide. In fact, suicide was the second leading cause of death among 15 to 29-year-olds around the world in 2015.

We Filipinos rarely talk about mental health and depression. Often, we brush it aside as just a ‘phase’ or a ‘feeling’. But in recent studies, approximately 3.3 Million Filipinos suffer from anxiety and depressive disorders. And only one in three cases usually asks for professional help.

But what’s most alarming is, depression in children seem to be increasing in number too. Children as young ten and twelve years old have been noted to die by suicide.

Unlike depression in adults, it can be difficult to spot in children and teenagers. So here are some telltale signs that your child is suffering from depression according to Psychology Today:

  • Frequent vague, nonspecific physical complaints such as headaches, muscle aches, stomach aches, or tiredness
  • Frequent absence from school or poor performance in school
  • Talk of or efforts to run away from home
  • Outbursts of shouting, complaining, unexplained irritability, or crying
  • Being bored
  • Lack of interest in playing with friends
  • Alcohol or substance abuse
  • Social isolation, poor communication
  • Fear of death
  • Extreme sensitivity to rejection or failure
  • Increased irritability, anger, or hostility
  • Reckless behavior
  • Difficulty with relationships

There are many factors that may cause depression. Research shows that it might likely result from a combination of genetic, biochemical, environmental, and psychological factors.

Some types of depression run in families. Trauma, loss of a loved one, difficult relationships and other stressful situations can also trigger depressive episodes. And other depressive episodes can also happen without any outside factors triggering it.

But the good thing is, depression is a treatable disorder even in the most extreme cases.And getting the right treatment starts with seeing the right doctor. The earlier the treatment can begin, the better and more effective it will be. It can also prevent the episodes from recurring.

Awareness is crucial in providing help and support for both the child and the family. And acknowledging the illness also demystifies and removes the stigma around it.

It’s also vital to surround yourself with the right support groups to help you through the darkest times.

To help alleviate the cases of depression in the country, Globe Telecoms created Hopeline 2919, a 24/7 toll-free suicide prevention hotline in 2012.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=773671016154757&id=171854589669739

The goal is to assist and support callers in crisis due to depression or suicide issues. It also provides support for callers who are not necessarily in immediate crisis but may need help to prevent it from occurring or escalating.

In its first year alone, Hopeline 2919 has received 14,000 calls relating to depression, suicidal thoughts, and relationship problems.

It’s awesome that Globe has Hopeline 2919, a campaign that hopes to remove the stigma that surrounds depression. Through the helpline, Globe Telecom continues to support the Department of Health’s goal in promoting mental health awareness in the Philippines.

As parents, we have a huge responsibility and opportunity to ensure our children’s emotional state. That’s why we need to watch out for telltale signs of depression before it gets worse.

With that said, I’d like to ask for your help in sharing this post on social media to help spread the awareness about mental health and depression. Share it with moms, dads, and anyone who needs help.

Because all lives matter.

#SeeYouTomorrow #HOPELINE2919

3 Ways to Make the Most Out of Summer with your Child

My baby is going to big school next year. I can’t believe how fast time flies. It was just a few blinks ago that I held her in my arms, and could carry her with just one arm. It also seems like it was just yesterday when she took her first step and said her first word. I also remember the time when she still smelled like a baby. haha! Now, she stinks after playing and I have to have her use Bambini cologne so she still smells good. Currently, i’m looking at this list of school supplies to buy for big school. BIG SCHOOL! Can you believe it?

I remember buying school supplies to be a lot of fun. I always had cute and great stuff at the beginning of the school year. My mom would put a lot of effort into choosing stuff, labeling things and packing things for me. Now, it’s my turn and I know that I’ll be enjoying doing all of these for Zeeka.

But enough about things that will happen in a few months. We still have summer to enjoy and we need to make the most out of summer!

So here are the three ways that I think we could make the most out of summer with our children:

EXPLORE AND GET LOST TOGETHER

Last week, I wanted to go jogging. I haven’t had time to exercise for the past month, because of the tons of things that I needed to do. When I was about to go out the door, I saw my daughter standing in front of me, all ready as she donned her “I’m-going-out-with-you-and-you-can’t-do-anything-about-it” look. I had no choice but to tell her to stand up straight so I could rub on some insect repellant and of course, her Bambini cologne (so she would still smell nice) and to grab her bike and follow me.

Bambini Sunny Playtime for awesome sunny day activities!

To tell you honestly, at first, I didn’t want to bring her because I was on “game-on” mode for working out. But during our little exploration outdoors, I had fun. I was feeling a little bit sentimental, too, since my little baby was now a little lady, and she could actually follow my pace. She was also asking about birds, the differences of trees, etc. We also sang together; we like the same songs, by the way.

This is why, this summer, go out with your child and get lost together!

SAVE AND SPEND PRECIOUS TIME AT NIGHT TOGETHER!

My daughter has a hard time sleeping early. So to help her sleep, we oftentimes go to bed early, rub a little bit of Bambini Starry Lullaby, and take turns in telling stories.

Perfect for sleep-time!

This summer, since she doesn’t really need to wake up early, we may step up the notch a bit and level-up our night time activities! We were thinking of having an evening picnic. Another idea is to make cups of chocolate and play boardgames for kids!

This is a plan that makes me excited for Summer!

ENJOY UNPLANNED THINGS TOGETHER

The reason why I love Summer is that there is no rush in doing anything with your child. As a mom, (I don’t you if you feel the same way, too), I feel like I have to be up a certain hour to do certain things for my child at a certain time. Everything feels so rushed. I feel like I/WE never get to chill and relax on the couch together.

There was one time last week when we found ourselves (my daughter and I) snuggling on the couch and doing our own stuff. I was watching Netflix and she was on her IPAD. Then out of the blue, she said, I love that mommy and I are alone together. Sniff… sniff! I realized the same thing, too. We hardly spend this kind of moment together, when we are both not in a hurry to get somewhere.

So Summer is the perfect time to chill and enjoy NOT planning!

Which reminds me, Bambini’s hashtag is #EnjoyLifesLittleSurprises 🙂 This summer, I hope that you find the joy with your little one in life’s little surprises.

 

 

 

 

 

Bounce Philippines – For Fit and Healthy Kids and Adults!

It’s so nice to be a kid in this day and age! There are a lot of cool things that you can do. One of the new cool things that you can do is to visit a trampoline park. The most impressive trampoline park that I have seen is a new on called Bounce! It is located at Las Piñas beside SM South Mall. Why is it impressive? This trampoline park is a huge expanse of 1,225 square meters of pure fun. The person who brought this here is British Founder, Mr. Mark Hogsden.

Inside Bounce, there are 18 activities that you can do! Don’t worry! You don’t need to be really fit to try it out. Upon entering, you can buy the socks that you will need. I love the neon colored socks that they have! There are

If you have a toddler, they have a kiddie playground where they can climb and slide into child-friendly structures.

If you’re competitive, you can have a battle beam match with your bff and see who can stay on the beam longer.

My daughter enjoyed playing in the Dodgeball area. She had fun throwing balls at me! hahaha! She also loved the basketball area, but it was still too high for her. There was also an are where she could try wall climbing, while not having to worry about falling (since you’d practically fall into a pit of foam! haha!).

Check out our video of what we did inside Bounce Philippines!

Bounce Philippines is also a great venue for team building! There is a relay that you can do that will make you feel like a ninja!

On Friday and Saturday evenings, you can celebrate and try out the Bounce boards, boxing bags, and LED bubble balls during glow-in-the-dark DJ nights!

When you’re tired, you can rest and have some snacks and a few drinks at Bounce’s fully air-conditioned party lounge and café.

If you are interested to try out Bounce, here are the rates!

My daughter had  so much fun that she wants us to book Bounce for her next birthday celebration. I highly recommend this place for family gatherings, corporate events, team building activities, etc. Bounce will soon release an annual membership package and a loyalty card that’ll provide amazing experiences at discounted rates and affordable prices all year round.

Bounce is open Mondays to Thursdays from 11 am to 9 pm, Fridays from 11 am to 10 pm, Saturdays from 9 am to 10 pm, and Sundays and holidays from 9 am to 9 pm. You can find them at the Ground Level of South Tower (right beside SM Southmall) on Zapote Road, Las Piñas.

For inquiries or reservations, call Bounce Philippines at 0949-3578357, 0927-9442860, or 0995-1490285 or email them at hello@bounce.com.ph. You can also visit their website at http://bounce.com.ph and follow Bounce on Facebook and Instagram @bouncephilippines for instant updates and special promos.

How Not to Overspend when Going to the Grocery

My husband and I avoid going to the grocery when we’re hungry. We notice that we tend to by a lot more than what we need. Also, I love going to the grocery to relieve stress? I don’t know, but for some reason, wandering in the aisles and discovering new products are stress relievers. I tend to overspend when I go to the grocery. So for today, I’ve listed down tips on how not to overspend when going to the grocery. This is because I also need to follow these rules for myself.

1. Don’t go to the grocery on an empty stomach.

When you feel hungry, everything looks appetizing. You’re bound to find everything delicious and you’ll end up grabbing “yummy” things that you see (which will be almost everything in the store).

2. Include in the list only necessary items to buy.

Another tip on how not to overspend when going to the grocery, is that before shopping, sit down first and list down the necessary items that you intend to buy. Check for used up or empty items in your refrigerator, bathroom and stock room. Take note that the list should only include the essentials, not the unnecessary ones. Only buy what’s specifically written in the list. Resist the impulse to get items based on what you feel at the moment (which is soooo hard to do, btw!)

3. At the grocery, don’t be deceived by promos!

There will be lots and lots of promotional items and marketing tactics (like bundling of things together to appear cheaper or to make the product seem more valuable), so be smart about it! If an item is bundled with a tumbler, think first. Do you really want the tumbler? Fine, if you were really intending to get that same product which so happened to have the tumbler. I fell into this trap and now, I have 6 or 7 tumblers that I don’t use (A big No-No for people who are following the KonMari Method which I am sincerely trying to do). My point is, think if you really really need that other item.

4. Calculate how much you can save if you buy bundled or bigger items.

I’m not saying all promotions are bad. If you are thinking of buying a bigger bottle of shampoo than a smaller one, calculate how you much you can save from it. Factor in your usage. You might be splurging if a smaller bottle is already enough in a month than a bigger one. For bundled items, make sure to calculate that it’s really cheaper. Some stores just lure you to buy 2 items in one go.

5. Set a time limit.

Do you know how it is in school when the teacher asks you to pass your test papers because time is up. Do that for grocery shopping. This will force you to go through your list first then later wander around IF you have enough time.

6. Pay using your paper bills – not with your credit cards.

You might not be aware of your daily expenditures if you use your cards instantly. Try to pay using your cash because it makes you realize how much money you are losing from your wallet. Ang sakit! (It hurts to see less money inside your wallet).

Let’s not set ourselves up for financial struggles in the future. If we can avoid financial pain and overspending, let’s avoid it! A life without worry is what we want for ourselves. We can sleep well at night and we can live a longer, happy life… and it all starts in the little adjustments that we make in the grocery.

 

 

Motherhood: How Not to Freak Out When You have a Newborn Baby

Last January, there were a lot of times when I freaked out when my daughter’s temperature would rise. She is more prone to having convulsions, since she already had one episode last December 2017. This is the reason why I am so hands-on when it comes to her health and nutrition. I  guess being a mom means having a lot of times when you freak out, because you don’t know what the #3!! is happening! I know that I am constantly learning new mommy tips and tricks as my daughter gets older. One thing that I am thankful for are the other mommies who have given me advice during times when I would freak out. So as a sign of gratitude, I am also sharing my tips on How Not to Freak Out When You have a Newborn Baby!

What to expect!

I remember feeling happy and excited to see my baby while waiting in the delivery room. After 9 months, you’re finally seeing your newborn baby — that human being that you grew inside your belly! It sounds unbelievably amazing, right? But, let’s face it! I’m sure your are also feeling a little bit of fear and anxiety on how to handle a baby properly. This is your first time as a mom, and you don’t want to make a mistake. I was like that! I wanted things to be perfect! haha! Many first-time mothers are anxious on how to breastfeed, bathe and calm their newborn babies. Today, I’m sharing an overview of things that I did and some ways on how not to freak out when you have a newborn baby. Knowledge is power!

How to breastfeed?

Place your baby’s body towards your breast. As soon as he opens his mouth, let him suck your nipple. His mouth should also cover the areola area aside from the nipple. Hold your breast for support. Be patient as this would require some practice to successfully nurse him. To be honest with you, my nipples hurt like crazy during the first week. But eventually, she (baby) got it right and we manage to pull through our challenge! You can breastfeed him/her as frequent as possible for more milk to be produced. The more demand there is, the more your body will create supply. So when I had my baby, I would feed as often as possible (since I knew I wasn’t gifted in producing a lot of milk). Target on nursing him for 8-12 times in a day.

How to bathe your newborn?

During the first month, it’s fine to only give sponge baths. The real bath can be given after the umbilical cord falls off. This usually happens on the third week. When giving him a bath, prepare first the things that you need near you. These are baby wash, towel and wash cloth. When you wash his body, focus on one area first. Try to work from head to toe. One hand should be on your baby and the other hand to wash him up. As soon as you’re finished, lift him/her up from his armpits. Place the baby on a towel and then wrap this around him/her.

Zeeka’s Bath Time!

How to calm your baby when crying?
Your newborn might be crying because of hunger or he/she is irritated with his wet diapers, or just feeling bored. He can make you frantic with his non-stop crying. Before rushing him to the hospital, you might want to try to comfort him by patting him on the back, swinging or carrying him on his side. If those don’t work, he might just be asking for some silence to doze off and finally fall asleep. My daughter always slept in the car! Cars are amazing for that moment when you don’t know what to do. Just drive around!

Baby Zeeka not feeling well… on the way to the Pedia

How to carry the Baby?

Guess what? We never used a stroller when our daughter was an infant. She hated all the strollers that we purchased. My tip is, just buy the stroller when the baby is there so they can test it out. We made a mistake by buying (because we were excited!) and being super ready even before the baby was born. A nice and super functional item that we bought (but test our first) are baby carriers. My carrier was like a belt with a seat. I would just carry the baby while she’s sitting. That seat acted like extra pair of hands! It was so cool!

So there! These are just some tips that I’d like to share with you so that you don’t panic. Believe me, everything will be okay! 🙂 I used to think of the worst situations, but then I finally accepted that I beat myself too much when things (uncontrollable) go wrong.  So the best advice that I can give is stay calm and don’t freak out, event if you have no clue on what’s happening. When you’re calm, you have presence of mind, and you’ll be able to think  things through.

Do you have things on your How Not to Freak Out When You have a Newborn Baby list? I’d love to hear more about what you have on your list! Share it with the other parents or expecting parents who are reading this. Comment on the comment section below 🙂

 

 

3 Ted Talks Videos that will Help You Start the Year Right

I’ve created my start the year right spreadsheets. I’ve installed applications that will help me track my progress this year. Now, what I actually need is little dose of inspiration. Being stuck in the hospital for four days has given me time to go through different videos. I particularly love browsing through Ted Talks videos.

If you want to start the year right, then spare some time to hear these three TED talks. Kare Anderson, Sarah Lewis and Susan Colantuono have good pieces of advice for you. Their talks will empower you to think greater, be bolder and reach the top of your career this year.

1. Be an opportunity maker by Kare Anderson

Kare Anderson is a writer who grew up with chronic shyness. Her talk discussed how she overcame it through a shift of mindset. She encouraged everyone to re-imagine the world where one can create opportunity for themselves and others. She said that it can happen through connecting with others and seeing their better side. After that, learn to trust each other. By being with people who share a common interest, serendipitous things can happen. You can create bigger projects or be hired in a new job.

2. Embrace the near win by Sarah Lewis

Sarah Lewis is an art historian. It is in working in the Museum of Modern Art that her view about success and creativity changed. It’s when one painter shared her story of how she threw away a painting that didn’t meet her standards. Only to find out that her neighbor find its beauty and kept it. It was then Lewis realized the importance of “near wins”. You must continue to strive to be good in your craft before you can experience success. As she said it, “mastery is in the reaching, not the arriving.”

3. The career advice you probably didn’t get by Susan Colantuono

Susan Colantuono is the CEO of the organization which she founded, the Leading Women. Her talk discussed about the missing career advice women should know to reach the top as much as men do. She said that women are advised to be more assertive and better in promoting themselves. They didn’t know business, strategic and financial knowledge are more essential to a company. They should know how to identify risks, provide appropriate business and financial recommendations to move the company forward.

What are your favorite Start the Year Right videos? Hope you can share it with us.