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Summer is Over

It's now the fall here down under and the weather has started to turn to the cooler side. Every day since the start of April the temperature has been dropping steadily during the day, the nights are getting longer, the clocks have adjusted, and now we're heading into a new season. Coming from the Philippines where there's no real season to speak of, I think having actual seasons is a welcome change. Having distinct transitions help with reflecting, remembering what has happened in the past few months, and looking forward to the future.

Much has happened since I last wrote my thoughts down. Here's a list of things I can remember distinctly that I'd like to share:


  • We've moved house. This is the third unit we've moved into and we're now back to getting ample space to move around and grow into. I liked the cozy feel of the last unit we've lived in but I definitely welcome space.
  • Our church has celebrated its 8th year anniversary. The celebration service went well and was a very memorable one.
  • I celebrated my second year as a Googler. It has been a good two years and I look forward to more years to come in great company.
I can probably write more about these things but I'd rather write more about things I've learned in this past season. There were a few firsts for me that I took a lot out of. There's a number of general areas that I'd like to write about: Health, Community, and Career.

Health

I stuck with a gym and training plan with a personal trainer for the good part of two months. It was great fun and I've learned a lot. I've also gotten great results. My waist has shrunk and my clothes are looser which I'm taking as a win. I feel stronger and fitter -- definitely been more active and more energetic.

Another thing that has been going good for me is getting regular sleep. Being able to get at least 7 hours of sleep has been doing me good. I also get better productivity at work because of this -- but more on that later on.

One thing I did learn the hard way is that detox is a very powerful weapon. It has helped me reset my system a number of times and allowed me to enjoy food in times when I'm not on detox. Cutting down on calories in general and improved hydration gets my system to a better place to be able to start getting back on a healthy track, or to achieve a specific goal. I'm on my carbo loading cycle and just about ready to get back into my long distance running routines. Nothing is better than getting my metabolism up and going after a carbo loading cycle, because this is when I can push harder and get more mileage.

Community

There's a number of lessons here for me. The first and biggest lesson for me is in the very real costs of building and maintaining relationships. In a very busy lifestyle, one that involves focusing on productivity and results, investing in building long term relationships should be done consciously. Nothing comes free and being consistent and regular about building lasting relationships means real hard work.

Regular service in church and fellowship with like minded people helps. What helps more is actually working on friendships and sharing experiences together. Bowling, footy games, dinner dates, and sleepovers all become much more enjoyable with friends.

I've also picked a new hobby which is also good for casual interaction with more people at work: pool. Not the kind that you swim in, the game involving a table, balls, stick, and some chalk. I'm catching up on my 8-ball playing skills (I remember being better when I was younger) but it's allowed me to get to know more people at the office. It helps that a lot of people at Google Sydney actually like playing pool too and have the patience to play with a relative newbie like me.

Career

Two years in absolute terms is not a long time. In relative terms, it is -- in an industry where quarters are the unit of measure, eight consecutive quarters is two full cycles. Interest rates calculated per-annum means I've already had compounded returns had I put money in at the start. It also means that I'm no longer new. It may also suggest that I'm relatively an old-timer in the company.

The more I think about it the more I'm convinced that I'm blessed to be working at Google. I'm also convinced how much I love working at Google and that I'm hoping more people can get the same chances I've been given.

I'm excited about the possibilities of years ahead in Google and in Australia. Being able to make a tangible impact in millions of people's lives through the work you do is very rewarding. I'm definitely looking forward to the many things I'd like to be able to do to continue making a difference personally and as part of an amazing company.

Onwards

So the next three months will be focused on getting settled, executing on plans, and settings sights on the next level. Season transitions are always a good time to reassess where you are and where you're going. I look forward to this season being as amazing -- and potentially be more amazing -- than the last one.

Thanks for reading.

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