Otobiografi Sebuah Cangkir

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A cup of milkPasangan itu memutuskan bertamasya ke Inggris untuk merayakan ulang tahun perkawinan mereka yang ke-25. Keduanya menyukai barang antik, khususnya cangkir. Dan begitulah, mereka memasuki toko demi toko untuk menambah koleksi cangkir antik mereka. Dan, ada sebuah cangkir yang sangat menarik perhatian sang nyonya. Cangkir yang sangat cantik.

“Engkau pasti tak tahu” tiba tiba cangkir di tangannya itu berbisik. “Dulunya aku sama sekali bukan cangkir …”

Agak terkejut dan gugup dia, tapi si nyonya diam saja, ingin mendengar apa yang akan dikatakan cangkir itu lebih lanjut.

“Dulunya warnaku merah. Merahnya tanah liat. Lalu Dia yang empunya aku mengambilku, menggulungku, menepuk-nepuk dan memukulku berulang-ulang sampai aku berteriak, ‘Lepaskan aku, lepaskan aku,’ tetapi Dia hanya tersenyum dan berkata: ‘Tahankan dulu, tahankan dulu, belum waktunya; engkau akan berguna pastinya.”

“Lalu Dia memindahkan aku ke sebuah meja putar. Dengan kakinya tiba tiba dia memutar meja itu dengan amat kencang, terus, terus dan terus sampai aku merasa pusing. ‘Hentikan, hentikan, hentikan!’ aku berteriak, tapi Dia hanya memandangiku dan berkata: ‘Tahankan dulu, tahankan dulu, belum waktunya; engkau akan berguna pastinya.”

“Akhirnya terbuka juga pintu oven yang panas itu. Aku diletakkannya pada sebuah rak. Aku mulai merasa nyaman dan dingin. Tapi baru saja merasakan ademnya udara, aku diangkatnya, Dia menyikatku dengan keras, lalu dicatnya dan dilukisnya seluruh tubuhku. Bau cat itu sungguh tak enak. Aku seakan tercekik. ‘Hentikan!’ teriakku. Kali ini aku menangis. Tapi dia masih dengan tenangnya memandangiku dan berkata: ‘Tahankan dulu, tahankan dulu, belum waktunya; engkau akan berguna pastinya.”

“Dia lalu mengangkatku lagi. Kukira dia sudah selesai, tapi ternyata belum. Malahan kini dia memasukkan aku ke dalam oven yang lain dan, ya ampun, kali ini bahkan dua kali lebih panas dari oven sebelumnya. Dalam hati aku sudah ingin menyerah saja dan melupakan semuanya: selamat tinggal dunia!

Tetapi mengingat tujuan Nya yang ingin membuat aku menjadi barang yang berguna, aku pasrah saja dan bertahan terus. Kupikir, adalah indah kalau hidupku menjadi berkat bagi sesama, menjadi anugrah bagi dunia. Pikiran itu membuatku bertambah kuat.

Tiba-tiba pintu oven dibuka. Dia mengangkatku dan meletakkan aku di rak yang bersih. Lalu Dia mengambil cermin dan berkata, ‘Sekarang lihatlah dirimu.’ Di kaca aku melihat sesuatu yang indah. ‘Ah, itu pasti bukan aku. Tak mungkin itu aku. Betapa indahnya. Akukah itu. Aku jadi cantik sekali sekarang.”

“Lalu Dia menimang-nimang aku sekali lagi dan berkata, ‘Ingatlah. Aku tahu bagaimana sakitnya digulung, dipukul, dibakar, digosok dan ditempa, tetapi Aku tak pernah meninggalkanmu hingga engkau menjadi yang sebaik-baiknya akhirnya. Kini engkau telah menjadi dirimu yang ada di pikiran Ku sejak Aku mulai membentukmu dahulu.”

 

Learning point:

Mengenali diri sendiri serta memahami bahwa setiap situasi yang kita hadapi ditujukan untuk menghebatkan diri agar menjadi pribadi terbaik.

Diadopsi dari buku “Kafe Etos” oleh Jansen Sinamo, hal. 98-100.

Kisah Wazir dan Sultan

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Sultan

“Win through your actions, never through argument”

Dahulu, ada seorang Wazir (penasihat) yang terkenal setia dan bijaksana melayani Sultan-nya. Wazir tersebut tidak pernah mengeluhkan pekerjaannya dan selalu melalukan yang terbaik bagi Sultan. Sang Sultan pun mempercayakan hal-hal yang penting kepada Wazir. Sayangnya, ia memiliki beberapa musuh di kerajaan yang iri hati terhadap loyalitasnya pada Sultan.

Musuh-musuhnya bersekongkol memfitnah Wazir dengan menyatakan bahwa Wazir tidak loyal terhadap Sultan.

Sultan yang terpengaruh kemudian memanggil Wazir kehadapannya untuk diadili. Sultan memutuskan hukuman mati bagi Wazir atas tuduhan pengkhianatan. Sebagai hukumannya, Wazir akan dilahap anjing-anjing ganas yang siap memangsanya.

Anehnya, Wazir memutuskan untuk tidak mengajukan satu gugatan pun atas putusan Sang Sultan. Namun, Wazir hanya menyampaikan permintaan terakhir sebelum ia dieksekusi. Ia meminta waktu 10 hari agar dapat mencari penjaga anaknya setelah ia dieksekusi. Dia juga berjanji tidak akan melarikan diri.

Sang Sultan mengabulkan permintaan terakhir tersebut.

Sesampainya di rumah, Wazir langsung mengambil sekantong emas yang dia simpan bertahun-tahun lamanya dan langsung kembali ke istana. Disana, ia bertemu dengan penjaga anjing dan menanyakan apakah ia dapat membeli anjing-anjing tersebut. Penjaga anjing tidak dapat menolak tawaran tersebut dan menyerahkan sekawanan anjing ganas pada Wazir.

Selama 10 hari, Wazir merawat dan menjaga anjing-anjing tersebut dengan sangat baik. Ia menghabiskan sebagian besar waktunya untuk memperhatikan mereka. Bahkan keluarganya sempat terheran-heran dengan perilakunya.

Setelah 10 hari, tibalah saatnya eksekusi akan dilaksanakan. Sang Wazir terlihat tenang menunggu eksekusinya. Ia diikat dan dimasukkan ke tempat dimana ia akan diserang anjing ganas. Semua orang termasuk Sultan terkejut menyaksikan apa yang terjadi di hadapannya. Anjing-anjing tersebut tidak menyerang Wazir, sebaliknya malah bermain-main dan menyalak kegirangan karena bertemu majikannya.

Sultan masih kebingungan dengan apa yang baru saja ia lihat. Sultan kemudian meminta agar Wazir dibawa ke hadapannya untuk menjelaskan apa yang sudah terjadi. Sang Wazir menyampaikan pada Sultan bahwa dia hanya melakukan hal yang sederhana. Dia menunjukkan belas kasih, dedikasi dan kesabaran pada anjing-anjing tersebut dalam waktu 10 hari. Hal yang sama, bahkan lebih, juga sudah ia tunjukkan pada Sultan selama 30 tahun melayani Sultan beserta keluarga kerajaan. Sayangnya, kesetiaannya dibalas dengan hukuman mati hanya dikarenakan mendengar fitnah dari musuh-musuhnya.

Sultan pun menyadari kesalahan yang telah ia lakukan. Ia langsung membebaskan Wazir dan memberinya pakaian yang sangat bagus. Sultan juga menyerahkan orang-orang yang sudah mencoba merusak reputasi Wazir. Wazir memaafkan orang yang telah memfitnah dirinya dan memperlakukan mereka dengan baik.

 

Learning point:

Put them into commentary boxes, will you? 🙂

 

Diadopsi dari “The 48 Laws of Power” by Robert Greene

 

You are what you think

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Art by Leo Tabibzadegan

Watch your thoughts, they become words.

Watch your words, they become actions.

Watch your actions, they come habits.

Watch your habits, they become your character.

Watch your character, it becomes your destiny.

Steve Jobs: Stay hungry, stay foolish

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steve-jobsSteve Jobs, the founder of Apple and Pixar, is the man behind the phenomenal products namely iPhone and iPad. World was amazed when he presented a revolutionary modification to mobile phone and tablet. He died in 56 years old after a troubling healthy condition for years. Nevertheless, people will always remember him because of his persistent and great contribution to people’s life.

Through this article, I’d like to share his commencement speech delivered in Stanford University in 2005. There are three points in this article that could be useful for people to think about their life. Personally, I think the speech is really powerful.

“You’ve got to find what you love, don’t settle”, Steve Jobs.

Excerpts:

I am honored to be with you today at your commencement from one of the finest universities in the world. I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I’ve ever gotten to a college graduation. Today I want to tell you three stories from my life. That’s it. No big deal. Just three stories.

The first story is about connecting the dots.

I dropped out of Reed College after the first 6 months, but then stayed around as a drop-in for another 18 months or so before I really quit. So why did I drop out?

It started before I was born. My biological mother was a young, unwed college graduate student, and she decided to put me up for adoption. She felt very strongly that I should be adopted by college graduates, so everything was all set for me to be adopted at birth by a lawyer and his wife. Except that when I popped out they decided at the last minute that they really wanted a girl. So my parents, who were on a waiting list, got a call in the middle of the night asking: “We have an unexpected baby boy; do you want him?” They said: “Of course.” My biological mother later found out that my mother had never graduated from college and that my father had never graduated from high school. She refused to sign the final adoption papers. She only relented a few months later when my parents promised that I would someday go to college.

And 17 years later I did go to college. But I naively chose a college that was almost as expensive as Stanford, and all of my working-class parents’ savings were being spent on my college tuition. After six months, I couldn’t see the value in it. I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life and no idea how college was going to help me figure it out. And here I was spending all of the money my parents had saved their entire life. So I decided to drop out and trust that it would all work out OK. It was pretty scary at the time, but looking back it was one of the best decisions I ever made. The minute I dropped out I could stop taking the required classes that didn’t interest me, and begin dropping in on the ones that looked interesting.

It wasn’t all romantic. I didn’t have a dorm room, so I slept on the floor in friends’ rooms, I returned coke bottles for the 5¢ deposits to buy food with, and I would walk the 7 miles across town every Sunday night to get one good meal a week at the Hare Krishna temple. I loved it. And much of what I stumbled into by following my curiosity and intuition turned out to be priceless later on. Let me give you one example:

Reed College at that time offered perhaps the best calligraphy instruction in the country. Throughout the campus every poster, every label on every drawer, was beautifully hand calligraphed. Because I had dropped out and didn’t have to take the normal classes, I decided to take a calligraphy class to learn how to do this. I learned about serif and san serif typefaces, about varying the amount of space between different letter combinations, about what makes great typography great. It was beautiful, historical, artistically subtle in a way that science can’t capture, and I found it fascinating.

None of this had even a hope of any practical application in my life. But ten years later, when we were designing the first Macintosh computer, it all came back to me. And we designed it all into the Mac. It was the first computer with beautiful typography. If I had never dropped in on that single course in college, the Mac would have never had multiple typefaces or proportionally spaced fonts. And since Windows just copied the Mac, it’s likely that no personal computer would have them. If I had never dropped out, I would have never dropped in on this calligraphy class, and personal computers might not have the wonderful typography that they do. Of course it was impossible to connect the dots looking forward when I was in college. But it was very, very clear looking backwards ten years later.

Again, you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

My second story is about love and loss.

I was lucky — I found what I loved to do early in life. Woz and I started Apple in my parents garage when I was 20. We worked hard, and in 10 years Apple had grown from just the two of us in a garage into a $2 billion company with over 4000 employees. We had just released our finest creation — the Macintosh — a year earlier, and I had just turned 30. And then I got fired. How can you get fired from a company you started? Well, as Apple grew we hired someone who I thought was very talented to run the company with me, and for the first year or so things went well. But then our visions of the future began to diverge and eventually we had a falling out. When we did, our Board of Directors sided with him. So at 30 I was out. And very publicly out. What had been the focus of my entire adult life was gone, and it was devastating.

I really didn’t know what to do for a few months. I felt that I had let the previous generation of entrepreneurs down – that I had dropped the baton as it was being passed to me. I met with David Packard and Bob Noyce and tried to apologize for screwing up so badly. I was a very public failure, and I even thought about running away from the valley. But something slowly began to dawn on me — I still loved what I did. The turn of events at Apple had not changed that one bit. I had been rejected, but I was still in love. And so I decided to start over.

I didn’t see it then, but it turned out that getting fired from Apple was the best thing that could have ever happened to me. The heaviness of being successful was replaced by the lightness of being a beginner again, less sure about everything. It freed me to enter one of the most creative periods of my life.

During the next five years, I started a company named NeXT, another company named Pixar, and fell in love with an amazing woman who would become my wife. Pixar went on to create the worlds first computer animated feature film, Toy Story, and is now the most successful animation studio in the world. In a remarkable turn of events, Apple bought NeXT, I returned to Apple, and the technology we developed at NeXT is at the heart of Apple’s current renaissance. And Laurene and I have a wonderful family together.

I’m pretty sure none of this would have happened if I hadn’t been fired from Apple. It was awful tasting medicine, but I guess the patient needed it. Sometimes life hits you in the head with a brick. Don’t lose faith. I’m convinced that the only thing that kept me going was that I loved what I did. You’ve got to find what you love. And that is as true for your work as it is for your lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking until you find it. Don’t settle.

My third story is about death.

When I was 17, I read a quote that went something like: “If you live each day as if it was your last, someday you’ll most certainly be right.” It made an impression on me, and since then, for the past 33 years, I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.

Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.

About a year ago I was diagnosed with cancer. I had a scan at 7:30 in the morning, and it clearly showed a tumor on my pancreas. I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. The doctors told me this was almost certainly a type of cancer that is incurable, and that I should expect to live no longer than three to six months. My doctor advised me to go home and get my affairs in order, which is doctor’s code for prepare to die. It means to try to tell your kids everything you thought you’d have the next 10 years to tell them in just a few months. It means to make sure everything is buttoned up so that it will be as easy as possible for your family. It means to say your goodbyes.

I lived with that diagnosis all day. Later that evening I had a biopsy, where they stuck an endoscope down my throat, through my stomach and into my intestines, put a needle into my pancreas and got a few cells from the tumor. I was sedated, but my wife, who was there, told me that when they viewed the cells under a microscope the doctors started crying because it turned out to be a very rare form of pancreatic cancer that is curable with surgery. I had the surgery and I’m fine now.

This was the closest I’ve been to facing death, and I hope it’s the closest I get for a few more decades. Having lived through it, I can now say this to you with a bit more certainty than when death was a useful but purely intellectual concept:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

When I was young, there was an amazing publication called The Whole Earth Catalog, which was one of the bibles of my generation. It was created by a fellow named Stewart Brand not far from here in Menlo Park, and he brought it to life with his poetic touch. This was in the late 1960’s, before personal computers and desktop publishing, so it was all made with typewriters, scissors, and polaroid cameras. It was sort of like Google in paperback form, 35 years before Google came along: it was idealistic, and overflowing with neat tools and great notions.

Stewart and his team put out several issues of The Whole Earth Catalog, and then when it had run its course, they put out a final issue. It was the mid-1970s, and I was your age. On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: “Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.” It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you.

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

Thank you all very much.

All about winning

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ImageSeems to be a winner is in everyone’s interest in any sports games, especially in the competitive atmosphere ones. 

Actually, I have realized since my childhood that sports games are not on the top list of my favorite activities because of its competitiveness. I’m not in favor of being a loser or a winner, neither of them since I believe that the gene of a winner is not in me. I am just an ordinary person who has an ordinary life. I don’t have any confidence to be a winner. In addition, I don’t like any competition at all till now. Not to blame anyone in this case. 

Currently, I am pushing myself to be an active member of badminton club in my company. We practice regularly every Tuesday in a badminton hall, only 5-10 minutes away from the office. From the badminton games, I learn a lot on how to cope with my problem of being a loser and put my self firmly to face the fact that I’m not a good player yet. Many session I’ve been through and always lost on those games. Then I chose to be a referee. From this position, I could see how a good player plays on the field. I learned a lot. Since then, I practiced their way of playing in badminton. Sometimes I won, sometimes I lost. But what I learn from badminton is not about winning or losing; it is about not quitting. I believe in not quitting is the basic different between winning and losing. Consequently, I have to put more strength in continues learning process to be a better player, not to be a winner. In my humble opinion, being a winner is just a bonus of upgrading my skills in playing badminton. Even though I can’t be a winner, I just need to know that I’ve been a better player from days to days.

When I’m contemplating of my point of view of the games, I’m looking back to my past. I’m feeling so lucky for having a chance to live my life even though not to the fullest yet. Fortunately, I could grab a chance to be top three of the best graduate from university, secure a rare opportunity to go overseas and have a privilege to be a teacher in a remote area for a year. In those three cases, I have never been thinking of competition is about winning or losing. It’s just about showing my best and believe in myself that I deserve those chances, not because I want to be a winner who’s going to beat others.

Kisah tentang 3 Coke

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Coke by artistAda 3 kaleng Coke (coca cola) yang diproduksi di pabrik yang sama di Jawa Barat. Ketika tiba harinya, sebuah truk datang ke pabrik tersebut, mengangkut kaleng-kaleng coke menuju beragam tempat yang berbeda untuk pendistribusian.

Pemberhentian pertama adalah Indomaret. Kaleng coke pertama diturunkan di sini. Kaleng itu dipajang di rak bersama dengan kaleng coke lainnya yang diberi harga Rp.4.000,-

Pemberhentian kedua adalah pusat perbelanjaan PVJ. Di sana, kaleng kedua diturunkan. Kaleng tersebut ditempatkan di dalam kulkas supaya dingin dan kemudian dijual dengan harga Rp.7.500,-

Pemberhentian terakhir adalah Hotel Hilton Bandung sebuah hotel bintang 5 yang sangat mewah. Kaleng coca cola ketiga diturunkan di sana. Kaleng ini tidak ditempatkan di rak atau di dalam kulkas. Kaleng ini hanya akan dikeluarkan jika ada pesanan dari pelanggan. Dan ketika ada yang pesan, kaleng ini dikeluarkan bersama dengan gelas kristal berisi es batu cube block. Semua disajikan di atas baki dan pelayan hotel akan membuka kaleng coke itu, menuangkannya ke dalam gelas dan dengan sopan menyajikannya ke pelanggan. Harganya adalah Rp. 40.000,-

Sekarang, pertanyaannya adalah : Mengapa ketiga kaleng coke tersebut memiliki harga yang berbeda satu dengan yang lainnya padahal diproduksi dari pabrik yang sama di Jawa Barat, diantar dengan truk yang sama dan bahkan coke tersebut memiliki rasa dan aroma yang sama?

Jawabannya terletak pada lingkungan tempat mereka berada. Lingkungan mereka lah yang mencerminkan seberapa tinggi harga mereka.

Apabila Anda berada di lingkungan yang bisa mengeluarkan terbaik dari diri anda, maka Anda akan menjadi cemerlang. Tapi bila Anda berada di lingkungan yang meng-kerdil- kan diri Anda, maka Anda akan menjadi kerdil.

Orang yang sama, bakat yang sama, kemampuan yang sama + lingkungan yang berbeda = NILAI YANG BERBEDA.

Dengan demikian, pilihlah pekerjaan yang memiliki lingkungan kerja yang dapat memberikan kesempatan besar bagi kita untuk mengembangkan diri dan berkontribusi bagi orang lain.