Have you heard that Travel Massive was just launched in Manila? Yep, 2 weeks ago and I’m lucky enough I was able to attend the event organized by my friend Lois of wearesolesisters.com and co. Not only that, I’m honored to share a short story of my journey from routine to life or as they call it “ROCK BOTTOM.” Allow me to share with those who wasnt able to attend the event what I shared two weeks ago at Travel Massive Manila.
Here’s the full manuscript (of course, sometimes I did spontaneous jokes), I also embedded the slide show I prepared:
“Hi! First lemme say congrats to Ian, Lois and the team who made this possible! Cheers to something massive happening right now in Manila.
Ako po pala si James Betia. Shameless plug first: Twitter: @journeyingjames – (konti na lang po ang lamang ni Anne Curtis sa akin sa twitter); Facebook: /journeyingjamesFB- don’t like it if you easily get excited with traveling to off-the-beaten paths; and Blog: www.journeyingjames.com - Warning: someone wrote me and said that “my blog is like kissing someone you really love, its very addicting.” Might make you journeyingjames-junkie?
Okay, I only have 5mins to share my journey from ROUTINE to LIFE- ROCK BOTTOM. Who among here has 8-5 job (day jobs, night-shift- security guards, balut vendor, tagasara ng bars, bouncers, or in between)? -I feel you :) For a second, can you close your eyes and think of the thing you like most. A dream? Like traveling the world, or putting up a coffee shop or becoming a dive instructor or a professional surfer. Everyone has a dream, right? ‘Coz if you don’t have you are a nightmare.
I was a P.E. Teacher & a Guidance Counselor (we call it Prefect of Discipline in our school). I am at work from 7am to 6pm.
Take a bath.
I woke up one day and found myself worrying about my age. Yes, I was not getting any younger and I wasn’t fulfilling my dream. Life has become a routine. STUCK. DRAGGING MYSELF TO WORK. :( I feel sorry for myself- it was ROCK BOTTOM. I wonder if I can still call it LIFE.
There needs to be change and I don’t expect that be given by boss, parents or colleague. I should stand up, run and chase that dream. That day, it was NOW or NEVER. I didn’t pursue it without a plan, far from it. I was planning to reorder my LIFE, I was reflecting on what I love most (traveling and inspiring the young people) when I run, praying that somehow my life would echo into eternity.
So come April of 2009, I finished my contract. It was a taste of FREEDOM!!! Not that I hate my job before, I actually had fun but I guess I’m happier and more fulfilled with what I’m doing now.
Enjoy! Enjoy! Party like a ROCKSTAR! until…. I hit ROCK BOTTOM again. My savings almost depleted. The last cheque came then after some months of being unemployed I began to feel my poverty. It was the time where I focused on my DREAM again.
Money left- Php4,000. PASSION: TRAVELING. Now what we can do with Php 4,000 and Traveling?
I looked for my old Philippine map, the map that was hanging beside my bed when I was still in college. I pinned it where I can always see it. Day in, day out it was a reminder, a goal, a target. I used my Php4,000 to invest on travel and motivated myself to blog my adventure. I checked on my balance and if I remember it right, it was less than Php4,000.00 Yep, I was that poor. That was my last money, no nothing more. So I thought about my dream and how to pursue it. I have to do it now or never. I should try, my last money would be spent while I stay home anyway. So I posed myself a challenge- 14 Days Solo Backpacking Challenge.
After that, I was broke but was satisfied of my accomplishment. From the beginning of the planning until I write my blogs about it I felt LIFE. I was living my life again. I was not doing my regular routine, I was spontaneous, happy, talk, dark, handsome
and hot. Hahaha! I was pursuing my dream, I BECAME ME.
It was the start of something AWESOME but my pocket is bleeding I was on the rocks for almost a year I used the rocks as stepping stone… So I began to love writing, blogging and I thought it would be great to pitch my adventure to magazines. I joined blogging contest and worked hard to be noticed (kapalan ng mukha, collab, PTB, CS, etc) I was freelancing as a blogger, runner, inspirational speaker, seller, trader, and jack of all trades. I changed my lifestyle too- for almost a year, I didn’t buy something for myself. I sacrificed, cut my credit card.
After a year, funds started to come gigs started coming! I was featured on TV for the first time Because I was doing what I love doing, I felt no pressure. I was smiling. Ads and projects fund my travels. Opportunities came too, lots of and I continued to find of ways to improve and up the ante until I finally reached one of my dreams- to travel the whole Philippines. And that is what JourneyingJames is most known for: ISANGDAAN: The Most Epic Travel Challenge in the Philippines!
I wanted to stay true to my dream so during this travels of mine I tried to encourage friends and readers to join me in my little cause:
GIVE and SHARE and MAKE a DIFFERENCE: SHOESHARING Project at Bais City, Negros Oriental
I end with a story from Sorsogon: Leaving a Legacy in Gubat, Sorsogon
All this we did because we believe that, “TRAVELERS will CHANGE the WORLD”
Prezi Slide Show:
To: TRAVEL MASSIVE MNL: MARAMING SALAMAT PO! SA UULITIN!”
— — — end of talk — — —
It was nice to meet fellow travelers during the event, new friends and some readers. Sorry for the photos o this post, narcissistic lang.
Special thanks to Hayahay Club for the support and cheers! I ♥ YOU ALL!
PS. I wore my new uniform during this event which says, “TRAVELERS WILL CHANGE THE WORLD.”
A lot of people are asking about it. Finally we will start production. If you are interested to get one for yourself and another for your friend, please give me a note or comment on this Facebook Note: Travelers Will Change The World Shirt This is a limited edition- only 50pcs. will be available. Get one now!
Shirt design: White dri-fit shirt with sublimated design of ‘TRAVELERS WILL CHANGE THE WORLD.’ Perfect for ourdoor activities because its quick dry.
Sizing: We follow the Asian sizing chart. I wear Medium.