By Donna T. Darantinao
How do we measure excellence?
Is it through the words we write? The things we say? Our school and work achievements? Or perhaps it is through the praises and good words people say about us. Who really knows?
The thing about “measuring excellence”, though, is that it is ultimately subjective, therefore no single person can be its arbiter. Don’t get me wrong, getting good grades at school is still very much worthy of praise — it takes a lot of hard work after all! But from a broader perspective, excellence could mean a variety of different things. For as long as your passion not only fuels your potential but also serves as an inspiration to other people, then you have all the reasons to look straight ahead and improve yourself.
Be careful not to believe your own hype, though! Even if, say, you do become a figure of excellence, it does not necessarily mean that you have to be so smart or good at everything that you leave no room for mistakes. Try as you might, you will never be flawless (what human is?). Remember, your very mistakes molded you into the excellent person that you are or will soon be. As a fantastic quote goes:
“Excellence flows from consistent performance over time. It is rarely gained by a single action but rather through a succession of positive attitudes and actions.”
I look at the people here in HAPI and see a pool of diversified humans all working towards the same goal. We forge paths for our less-fortunate kababayans through building programs and other activities. We inspire others to stand up and be firm about our ideals. We encourage other people to be the best versions of themselves because isn’t that what we all, at least most of us, live for? Who are we if we do not want to reach the pinnacle of our individuality?
So in pursuing excellence, you must only do what you think is for the good of humanity. It doesn’t matter if you start small: when other people learn of your story, it might spark their passion just a bit. In a way, you can start a fire for the world to see.
“It takes time to create excellence,” basketball coach and player John Robert Wooden once said. “If it could be done quickly, more people would do it.”