Big decisions require bigger sacrifices…

3 01 2010

AN EXPATRIATE PROFESSIONAL friend texted me a while ago about the passing of his elder and only brother today. This friend had already planned since late last year to go on his annual leave back in his home country at the end of this month. He’s entitled to two weeks leave.

Now he’s probably having a sleepless night trying to decide on whether to go or not to go back home ASAP to help out with the funeral since he’s the only man left in his family. His father had died when he was still very young. His mother is too old to take care of things and his wife is helplessly dependent on him in almost everything.

But being a foreign staff under a short-term contract, it would be quite difficult for him to apply for an emergency leave due to his heavy workload around this time of year. My sincere sympathy for my friend.

Well, if I were in his shoes, I’d probably spend the whole morning tomorrow negotiating with his superior and employer to advance his holidays instead of taking it end of the month. That would be an ideal win-win solution for both parties. Of course, I’m not the boss to decide. For all you know, his boss may have the kindest of hearts to let him go on compassionate leave for a few days, at least. A big decision for either parties to make because a lot of issues are at stake.

Another professional guy called me up right after the SMS of bad news from my friend who just lost his brother. This other professional phoned to inform me of the biggest decision in anyone’s life i.e. finally calling it quits from a steady stable job with great monthly salary and fringe benefits, to be his own boss. I simply responded with the word that automatically comes to my mind — ALHAMDULLILLAH (all praises and thanks be to Allah)– the moment he broke the official news to me directly from his own mouth. I’m thinking now what I should have said to him was CONGRATULATIONS! Anyway, I’m seeing him tomorrow morning so I’ll just congratulate him then, Insya Allah (God Willing).

Most people would shirk it off or worse still jeer at such a decision to resign from one’s ‘comfort zone’ especially coming from someone who’s already holding a senior position in the Government Civil Service or Brunei Shell Companies (about the only two most prestigious employers in the Abode of Peace). Some ‘helpful’ critics would even call him/her a fool for quitting his/her good job!

For the individuals who’ve made such a huge decision, it’s something that they must have thought out thoroughly and something that is worth sacrificing for or even dying for, for that matter. I mean it could even be termed as a life and death situation. You’re talking about one of the most important decisions involving critical matters which affect not only that individual’s own life but also his/her immediate family members’ lives who could be depending on him/her, particularly the children’s future. 😦

But you know what, everybody else is entitled to his/her opinion just as this professional is entitled to make up his own mind about what’s best for him from here on. Why should I congratulate him for resigning?

Why the heck not? He’s taken a brave, bold decision not just anybody would dare do. Call him a big risk-taker, a foolish man, a self-centered guy, what you will… to me, he deserves all the best congratulations! πŸ˜‰

People would despise such a decision with cynicism at full throttle. But let me ask those people about the worst case scenario: What if he hadn’t quit and carried on working as a well-paid civil servant or a Brunei Shell staff and suddenly BOOM! He got fired for some unethical HR issues or corruption or what have you… Hey, there’s no denying the fact that these things happen and quite a number of people have experienced or are experiencing such bitter taste of life, no matter what level or high office you hold.

My point is by quitting while you’re at the top of your profession or career with your integrity still intact, that’s the best time to go, man! Yeah, way to go, bro! πŸ™‚

Besides, he must have worked it all out to his own satisfaction. Having made such a decision, I’m pretty sure anyone in his right frame of mind has done his homework or at least is confident enough to survive in life… It most certainly takes a lot of courage to arrive at such an important decision. And it’s a choice he (and not other people) has to live with for the rest of his life. Whether he’ll be successful or not is a different matter altogether because success shouldn’t be measured by monetary or materialistic gains alone. A successful man is one who keeps on trying and who walks tall even after a big fall. Period.

Talking about satisfaction, this classic Rolling Stones’ hit tune with forever young Mick Jagger’s unmistakable vocals and stage performance: “Can’t Get No Satisfaction” is a good interlude music to suss out…

Another young bloke I know was ‘King of the day’ (“Raja Sehari“) today when he got married in his early 20s (25 if I’m not mistaken, which is indeed the right age for a man to tie the knot). Again, this is one of the biggest decisions which can be painstakingly difficult to take. I take my hats off to this newly-wed young groom and CONGRATULATIONS are in order!

May Allah bless all the newly-wedded Bruneian couples last year and this new year… AMIN! πŸ˜‰





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