This is a post by a girl Dea Gendyna
Let me drag you to the thoughts you think you won’t understand about people experiencing AIESEC. If some of you think this is a kind of strategy from me to urge people to apply higher role and you get pretty sick about it, then forget it. Close this note.
This note is irrelevant for you. Neither, you are thirsty enough to be open to new perspective and understand people’s story. This note is for those who want to know why I’ve been staying in AIESEC for almost 2 years after my graduation (I graduated in Mid 2011). Or even why some people stay in AIESEC even after their age passed 30 years old. X)
I feel like I want to write this note since there is someone, was about to challenge herself to take an opportunity in AIESEC, but instead, she said, “Im still kind of doubting if I will apply. Therefore I was wondering what was your reason to apply? Because you are already some times in AIESEC.”
From that question, I didn’t rushly answer. I was in silence a bit to think how long I have been in AIESEC.
I’ve been in AIESEC since 2008, and this year is going to be my 5th year in AIESEC. I’m going to stay in AIESEC at least till mid 2014 as I have been elected for a new role in the beginning 2013.
In that exact moment, I just realized, how crazy I have been so far.
In the middle of doubt of friends, family, parents, of what I am doing here, I keep being bold for what I want to do and what I believe in.
At that exact moment, I just realized, how amazed I am to myself for these past 5 years.
Do you think it’s easy to be this far?
NO! BIG NO!
When I entered AIESEC, I was a very active, introverted, super sensitive, and professional person. I was so uptight and I don’t like staying so long with people I was not close with.
In 2007 I worked for a lot of projects and events (outside AIESEC). Once I enter AIESEC, I was so disappointed. I compared: AIESEC is a lot worse than the one I worked on the other organization” together. I found AIESEC is just a bunch of people who want “to be happy”, and Somehow this happiness is translated only with togetherness, hangouts, parties by some people.
I started to see that AIESEC wasn’t really my place. At that time I feel no one is professional, AIESEC way is a myth, and people are too hedonist that I can’t afford the togetherness anymore. I don’t come from a rich family. My parents are working as normal governmental employee. I live only with my monthly money (including all the rents and utilities) while at the same time, I have to use my money to make my project successful. At the same time, I’m idealistic, I can’t ask for more money while I know the condition of my family.
Do you think staying in this project is easy?
NO! BIG NO!
It wasn’t easy for me to express what I was disappointed from. Then, in the end I just ran away and was called as loss member. Specifically for this, running away is VERY EASY.
A year after, what people know, I became LC VP Finance right after being a loss member.
I know, after being a loss member, many people in AIESEC hated me. They see me as a betrayal, weakling, or egoistic person for running away and leave my project team alone. I even lost a best friend for doing that. That’s the biggest sadness for me that time. He said, it’s hard for them for me to surrender. I accepted that.
Now, see this:
When no one liked me, when people distrusted me, when I didn’t know anyone in AIESEC that time, when no one supported me, do you think it’s easy to keep moving and submit your application as an Executive Board of the entity who doesn’t like, trust, or even know you?
NO! BIG NO!
People see me with bad social character and track record, but instead, I was selected. I was very surprised to be honest.
I have to thank to my LCP that time Soraya Medina Amrina Rosadha (Momon) for trusting me, despite of the distrust of everyone in my entity. The thing that made me respect her so much (despite of her human flaws :p) is that the moment when she gave me feedback
“I don’t know you. I know it’s risky but I simply trust you. I believe in the goodness of people. I know people can change, and so do they. They can change this entity. Please put trust on me too, to be your leader.”
From a single determination and bravery, who knows you may change yourself forever?
This is a moment that has change myself completely.
“Believe in the goodness of people”.
That time, I felt so involved and understood. This woman, made everything easier for me.
Next, actually, I was about to apply as MCVP Project in New Zealand, I had meetings, filling the booklet, and was ready to submit (around January 2011), but it turned out things went wrong, I couldn’t follow the selection process because I had an internship in one company for my final thesis for a month. That moment, I secretly felt so de-motivated. Because being MCVP International was in my career path.
Specifically for this experience, deciding to cancel this opportunity is easy. VERY easy.
But a month later, I just realized, “How can an internship stop me from achieving my dream?” I realized, I just missed that opportunity without even trying harder. I could have asked 1 day off, borrowed a stronger modem, and did the selection. But I didn’t do it simply because I didn’t think I can do the selection when I was equipped with my thesis, internship, LCVP works, or other stuff outside AIESEC. I thought, that I have that limit. While in fact, I was the only person who defined the limit. It was stupid.
I was waiting for the next round, unfortunately, the position was closed already.
It was a huge regret for me.
One day, I talked to Momon, how my brain kept saying, “Ends it now”, while my heart said, “Not Yet”. I also shared how I really cared of my parents so bad thus their opinion will always matter the most for my decision. I was in a huge doubt within some months. However, I didn’t want to fall in the same hole. I didn’t want to limit myself of social paradigm: fear of the small salary, fear of not getting job because it will be too late for me, the fact that my parents didn’t believe in my choice, the possibility that being an MC is a huge waste of time for my future.
Till one day, I just realized. All the answers are within yourself. I was trying to be honest to myself, forcing myself to answer which one I prefer deep deep deep down inside. What does your heart believe in. I thought, “I believe I shouldn’t end it now.”
And next, I tried to imagine, “if I were a limitless human, a superhero, the one who has strong determination, is it still possible for me to be in MC, but at the same contributing financially to my family, getting a higher position than most of my friends after I finish this XP, and prove the world that this isn’t going to be a wrong decision?”
“Well, off course I can.”
By that moment, I booked a transport to go back to Lampung (where my parents lived) and talked to them, explained them how things will work for my future, how determined I am, and how I will really regret this if I COULDN’T EVEN TRY.
More less, I told them, “I believe in a concept of God. He will give the best for our future. If this decision isn’t the best, he will simply fail me. What I need are trust and support, not a permission, cause without these from them I can’t proceed, and this is exactly the life I want experience.”
Surprisingly My Dad agreed right at the moment, and so did my mom. She even hugged me, surprised with the moment she saw me the first time showing a very big determination of what I wanted to do. The most valuable was when we were having Maghrib prayer together, we had prayer time specifically for this. I felt so supported right from that time. I finished the application, videos, and everything within a week. Everything was so easy when you know exactly what your value in life is.
If wealth is your main focus now, then this organization doesn’t suit you anymore. This organization has never been an alternative for your personal money, but your valuable experience. Don’t compare these experiences with money. Compare it with time and probability.
This is just a little story I can share to give a perspective that, whatever you want to do in life, hold on your idealism and value. Stick with it. The world will support as long as you have determination.
Just imagine that you are limitless. You will find all the answers you need.
I am not rich nor very wealthy. I’m not a cry baby asking every penny to get support for these experiences. But people are willing to invest on you; your ideas and your determination for what you believe in. So dedicate yourself to your value and idealism.
Use the fact that you are the youth. You have the power to change!
You can affect the society instead of letting the society affects you.
It’s just a matter of your own choice.
So choose your path wisely. 🙂