Your Tragedy Can Be Your Treasure

Have you experienced tragedies in your life? If yes, congratulations! It confirms that you are human! I wonder if you were one of those from outer space.

Tragedies come to us in different forms – mistakes, misses, rejections. They also come in varying intensity – small hurt, medium hurt, large hurt. At times, they come extra-large. Even those that are extra-small still hurt us.

But as I live my life and go through different forms and levels of tragedies, I realized that they can become treasurers. Yes, your tragedy can be your treasure.


Let me share with you three experiences that were painful to me but later led me into something precious.

First, I applied for the scholarship offered by the provincial government, I was not chosen.

I was about to enter college then and I was a bit worried where to source my education fund. My family was so helpful but we cannot deny that we were in lack. The friendly and supportive Ate Elnora shared with me the news that the provincial government is offering financial assistance to economically challenged yet deserving students.

“Apply for this. There is a big chance you will be accepted,” she said.

She helped me craft my application letter and prepare the necessary documents for the scholarship. You should have seen how impressive it was. But those did not matter anymore when I was told, “They chose the other applicant.”

I don’t mind him getting the scholarship because he also deserved it but I mind not getting one for myself. I was hurt.

Nevertheless, I had to continue with my plans and attended college. I looked for scholarship options. And because I had no choice, I just had to do my best in school so I would become an academic scholar. For several terms, I landed the Dean’s List – which means 30% off the tuition. At times, we made it as College Scholars – which means 100% off the tuition.

To someone looking for funds for school, that tragedy pushed me to study hard and find treasures in other vaults.

Second, I applied to become an accounting teacher at my Alma Mater, I was turned down.

I have passion for teaching. And people say I am skilled in it. But despite having the credentials and good professional relationship with the University where I graduated as cum laude, I did not make it.

“How could this be possible? They know my credentials. I was not just performing academically but also in leading student organizations,” I questioned why I was not accepted. But today I am thankful because after that rejection, I went back to work in Makati where I found a job in a multinational company, been a consistent top performer, and promoted as the youngest supervisor. Outside of work, I have met different prolific people who became good mentors and friends.

That tragedy led me to keep on working and find other treasures in other fields.

Third, I first delivered a seminar in a professional group in Bonifacio Global City, two of the participants said they should have invited a different speaker.

To speak professionally was just a dream then. And then came my first invitation to talk outside the group where I practice my speaking. I was so eager and excited. I prepared for it.

After the event, I requested for a copy of the evaluation. When the seemingly good evaluation came, it arrived with a sting! One said it was obvious that I was a beginner (that sounded like a pre-beginner) and another said that they should have invited a different speaker (that sounded like I had no business speaking to them at all). While only two of the forty plus participants said those, it stung! At a certain level, they were correct. Maybe I was trying to mimic someone else, I was not totally myself, and I had lots of papers in front to guide me as I go along.

But I also gave me heart and preparation for them. It was not fair. I did not understand.

However, that experience led me to push myself to prepare for every presentation I will give that I won’t have to depend on stacks of paper in front of me. That if I will present, I will be there fully present, giving my all.

To date, I have been giving talks and trainings with full heart and presence without being so dependent on any written script.

That experience of pain led me to grow in my skills and confidence. That tragedy led me to push myself hard to unearth a treasure I have to share.

What are you tragedies? What are your mistakes, misses and rejections? If you look at them, they have served in you ways you did not even expect. If you review your life events, your tragedies have become your treasures.

But how about the others? How those tragedies that do not even make sense? Even for me, there are tragedies that still don’t make sense to me. But I still believe that one day, they will make sense. They will become treasures.

If you don’t seem to see a treasure coming from them, then do something today so that your tragedy yesterday will become a treasure tomorrow. It was. It is. And it will be.


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, DTM is a speaker, trainer, and writer on personal and organizational leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit )

On Achieving the Highest Norm in Toastmasters

Staring at the blank window of my laptop, thinking of how I will turn my waiting time into a productive one, I googled “presentation tips.”

“I want to be able to present my audit findings in an effective manner,” I whispered as I clicked on the link to the article. After reading through three articles, Toastmasters was mentioned.  

chris tm

“What was that? Is that about speaking, bread toasting, or wine toasting?”

My eager fingers danced across the keyboard, pressed enter, and voila: I found the Toastmasters website ( Through its ‘Find a Club’ function, I found a club near my place that meets on a Saturday at 6pm. “This is a perfect fit to my schedule and location.”

I visited IAME & Associates Toastmasters Club. I was surprised at how friendly and accommodating they were. They greeted me with warm handshakes. (I was hoping there were fruit shakes, too! But none was served. Oh good snacks, they have!)

The meeting (a different kind of meeting) came with moving speeches, lots of laughter, and friendly and constructive evaluation. On that same night, I also delivered my first impromptu speech (called Table Topics) in Toastmasters. Boy, I was terrified but thrilled. How’s that possible? I don’t know. But I liked what I experienced.

It felt home that I had no choice but to join.

I became a Toastmaster member in 2010, month of June.

Weeks after, I excitedly (I meant, nervously) delivered my Ice Breaker speech. Thanks to the very heart-warming and helpful evaluator assigned to me. His words that night, affirmed by the VPEducation and the other members of the club, pushed me to run forward in delivering my speech projects. He started the mighty throng of evaluators that came my path whose words touched my heart and stirred my young mind to continue growing my voice, my passion, my skills in communication and leadership.

From doing all the projects in the Competent Communication manual to the advanced manuals, from Sergeant-at-Arms role to President to VP Public Relations to Area Governor positions — credit them to the persistent prodding of my mentor. As an obedient soldier, I said my yes’es to these communication and leadership projects. Oh yes, including speech contests. From winning them to learning more of what’s in store in them! Man, there was a lot I didn’t know.

Shifts in my career path brought me back home to the mountains of Benguet and to now my home club in Baguio – Pines City Toastmasters Club. There I found another supportive and nurturing environment.  


I continued running my marathon of speeches, evaluations and leadership roles in Pines City Toastmasters Club… and in the other clubs in Baguio City: Baguio Funshine, Synergy, and Baguio Ecozone Toastmasters Clubs.

Here I found great Toastmaster fellows, speech champions, dynamic speakers, and dedicated learners (both young and not so young).

Toastmasters helped me to become a speaker, trainer and author.

Seven years have passed already. There a lot more stories I can share that this article cannot contain. These stories continue to be written as they continue to unfold…

As I get busy spreading the gift of Toastmasters, helping others become better communicators and leaders, serving people to become better versions of themselves, awards and certificates come. And today, the highest norm or educational award given to Toastmasters called the Distinguished Toastmaster is bestowed to yours truly, your friend – Chris.

I am delighted because behind this certificate or title is a journey of growth of developing myself, of helping others, of honing my voice, of inspiring others, of unwrapping my gift and being of service to other people.

Yes, after seven years, I am now a Distinguished Toastmaster but the learning and service has just begun. Inside and outside of Toastmasters. I will still stay to continue learning with Toastmasters but moving more outside of Toastmasters, outside the meeting rooms, out to the community!

I continue to spread this gift of Toastmasters. Join us in Toastmasters – WHERE LEADERS ARE MADE.


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis


(Chris Dao-anis is now the VP Education of Pines City Toastmasters Club. For more info, visit If you are outside Baguio City, visit the international website at Chris is an author of three books to date. The latest one, Living Large in the Little Things, is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, you can reach him at or visit his website at You can also like his page at

Rules of Achievement

It pays to know the rule. In an exam, it pays to know the instructions.

I once had a business law professor who is very particular with the law. He was the one who hammered in my mind the legal maxim “Dura Lex Sed Lex” (The law may be harsh but it is the law).

One exam, his instruction was to use capital letters. And so I obliged. A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I. Wait, how do you write a capital letter I? I just drew a big, big line! Very easy, right? Yes, but I made a mistake. According to him, the letter “I” should be an “I” that has a head and a base.

What’s worse is that there are a lot of I’s in the answers. I failed that preliminary exam because I didn’t fully understand his rule. (I did my best to eventually pass the subject but that’s another story.)

It pays to understand rules, right? Thankfully, the three rules of achievement that I know are not that harsh. They are simple, not easy – but simple.

How? Let me share with you three simple rules: Allot, Align, Announce.



First, allot. Allot time for what you want to accomplish. We are guided by the maxim, “What gets in your calendar gets done.” So schedule it.

For example, you may already plot your projects or events in your Google calendar. You can even add reminders that will alarm you when they are about to come. Now that’s even an added benefit for your high-tech smartphone.

In Toastmasters, I would usually schedule my speeches. Last year, I scheduled my speeches according to the schedules of our club and three other clubs. Sometimes, due to changes in activities, I won’t be able to deliver on my personal schedule but that’s ok. I just have to adjust. But having them in my calendar is already a step closer to their achievement. And most of those I scheduled were done as intended.

Second, align. Your different activities do not have to contradict with each other. You can actually align them and uphold that age-old maxim, “Hit two birds with one stone.”

Let me give another example of what I do in Toastmasters, a public speaking club that is outside of my previous work as an accountant. When I served as the Area 76 Governor, I need to visit clubs in Makati and Taguig. I also need to help them go for their goals. But I also want to finish my speech projects while serving in a leadership role. What I did was to get the advanced manual called Speeches by Management – thus, aligning to my role. One project there is to deliver a status report.  So I scheduled a speech in my home club, presented the mid-year status of its Distinguished Club Program goals, and rallied them to finish strong as President’s Distinguished Club. After the meeting, I finished one speech project and I fulfilled one task as Area Governor.

Yes, there are ways on how you can align your activities and hit two or three or even four birds with one stone.

Third, announce. You’ve probably heard the concept of declaring your dreams – sharing it to your best friend, accountability partner, or to the world. When you announce it, you are making yourself accountable. And this helps you to go achieve it! You have to because you are a man and woman of your word.

Years ago, I simply told a friend that I will write a book. In my mind, I also calendared it. Before I turned 25, it happened – my first book came out in December 2013.

But what if you will miss the mark? That’s ok. In my second book, I wrote there that I was aiming to achieve the highest norm in Toastmasters called Distinguished Toastmaster in 2015. Did I make it? No, not in that year. But this year, it is coming.

Announce your goals and you will be one step closer to their achievement.

My friend, these three rules of achievement – allot, align, and announce – are very much simple but they are powerful. Apply them. Don’t be afraid to make mistake. Don’t be afraid of not having the head and the base for your letter “I.” Just go and proceed to achieve. Because in real life-life learning, there is no failure, only progress.

Soon, in that appointed time, you will achieve your goals. Because that is your nature. You are an achiever!


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis will be giving for the first time the ‘C3 Workshop: Unlock the 10 Powers to Command Your Career (and Life) Confidently’ on August 6 here in Baguio City. It will be a one-day intensive and interactive workshop that you must attend. If you are a college student, aspiring professional or young professional, check the details at You may also email or contact 0948-114-2013.)

C3 Workshop

What Do We Need To Have

These are three big questions in life: What do we aspire to be? What do we long to do? And what do we need to have (to be able to do what we long to do)?

In the previous weeks, we answered the first two questions. Today, we are going to answer the third question: What do we need to have?

I have three answers: We need to have a platform. We need to have persuasion. And we need to have purpose.


First, we need to have a platform. If we say that it is in our nature to create, we need to have a platform where we can display what we create. We need to build our stage to showcase our craft. Otherwise, that thing we created will be useless and we will not be able to contribute to the world.

The platform or stage could be a literal platform if you are a performer, a speaker, or a dancer. Platform can also be in forms of media for writers, broadcasters or journalists. It can also be anything that allows you to serve an audience, a group of customers or clients, a community.

It is in this platform where the element of confidence is necessary. Regardless of how grand a platform is, if confidence is not there, it will be useless. Hence, you and I need to develop confidence. We already have it in our core but it may have been shattered by some external factors. It is for this reason that we need to unleash that confidence once again.

Second, we need to have persuasion. We are leaders. If we long to contribute, we have no choice but to become leaders.  By now, you know that leadership is not dependent on position. As John Maxwell says, “Leadership is influence.”

If we want to further our message or contribution, we need to further our influence. Here comes the need for persuasion. You cannot influence if you cannot persuade. And I’m not speaking about those tactics that old salespeople use. No. I am referring to the essential communication skills that are necessary to relationship building, to influencing, to leading.

Third, we need to have purpose. Our journey to create, connect and contribute will become – at a certain point – be daunting. In our effort of developing our confidence and communication skills, there will be times that we might give up because it can get difficult. We will not persevere to do these things if we do not have the sense of purpose. Purpose is the key.

This is the reason why we need to look into our core to be able to command our career. And our career should be carefully selected. It has to be aligned with our core. When we do so, we will be able to maximize our impact while having that sense of meaning, of purpose. When we do so, we aim to live a life of success and significance.

That sounds so grand. Big words! Yes, they are. But they can be started in our own small ways. It is possible to have that sense of success and significance even if you have not achieved that gigantic goal that you have in your vision. You just need to connect to your core and review a bit of the basics. Basics that were forgotten.

Today, make that drive to have that platform, persuasion and purpose.


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis


PS: I will be discussing these further and tackle more essential life questions at the C3 Workshop: Command Your Career Confidently. Join us and let us Unlock the 10 Powers to Command Your Career (and Life) Confidently on August 6 here in Baguio City. It will be a one-day intensive and interactive workshop that you must attend. If you are a college student, aspiring professional or young professional, check the details at You may also email or contact 0948-114-2013.

C3 Workshop

What Do We Long To Do

Last week, we answered the question, “What do we desire to be?” And we said that we desire to be alive, to be present, and to be loving. If these are what we desire to be, then the question that we need to ask now is this, “What do we long to do?”


I have three answers: We long to create. We long to connect. And we long to contribute.

First, we long to create. It is in our nature to create. Regardless of our profession, we are creative artists. We long to carve, to craft, to create. When you stop creating, you start decaying. You don’t want that to happen, do you? Today, live that longing to create.

Sometimes you wonder why a high performer at work suddenly quits. When you ask him, he will say, “I don’t feel challenged anymore. It seems that I am not growing.” And when you ask him further, he will say, “I am not creating something new anymore. It seems that I’m done in this company. It’s time for me to create new things in a new environment.”

Your story may be different from this man but you share that longing to create. Continually create.

Second, we long to connect. They say, life is nothing without connection. It’s true. Inherent to living our life is our longing to connect. When you stop connecting, you start isolating. And when you isolate yourself, you stun your growth. And when you stop growing, you start dying. You don’t want that to happen, do you? Today, live that longing to connect.

Sometimes you wonder why a member leaves a group. There are several reasons but one of them is revealed in the answer of a woman who says, “I don’t feel like I belong. I don’t have friends here.” What she is saying is, “I don’t feel connected.”

Your story may be different from this woman but you share that longing to connect.

Third, we long to contribute. Success is not success unless it is shared. In the movie Into the Wild, it says, ‘Happiness is real only when shared.’ That is why wise people teach us to live a life of success and significance. You live a life of significance when you give, when you contribute. When you stop contributing, you start losing your sense of meaning. And when you lose your sense of meaning, you lose your longing to live. You don’t want that to happen, do you?

Sometimes you wonder why a seemingly successful person suddenly stops what he is doing, gets insane, lose all that he has, or the sad worst – kills himself. We ask, “How could he do that? He is so successful?” We wonder and we realize that those unfortunate things happen because they are not satisfying that longing to contribute. They may have gone so busy and blinded that they forgot to reconnect to that longing to be of contribution to the world or even to just one other person.

You don’t have to experience what they had experienced but you share that longing to contribute.

These are the things that we long to do. To create, to connect, and to contribute. It can be done in a great scale or small scale. It doesn’t matter. What matters is you live these longing with what you have right now, in the present. This is a big challenge for you and me. But if we are to continue living, we have to live these longings. In our own small ways.

Go live to create, connect, and contribute!

The third question: What do we need to have (to be able to do what we long to do)? We will answer this next week.


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, ACG, ALB is a speaker, trainer, and writer on personal and organizational leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit He will be conducting the first C3 Workshop: Command Your Career Confidently in Baguio City on August 6. For more details, log on to or contact 0948-114-2013.)

C3 Workshop

What Do We Desire To Be

They were speeding in the freeway until they came to a spot where the driver was caught by surprise. He had to do a maneuver. But he missed it. They came tumbling down like a rolling tin can.

In the middle of that tragic accident is a man named Brendon. Good news: he is still breathing.

He looks through that broken windshield. And just like movie rolling in rewind, he sees all his life events appearing in front of him in a fast yet seemingly slow motion. He looks at his families and his loved ones. One by one, he looks at his life. And then he realizes that this is it. This may be the last moment of his life.

A moment after, as he stands amidst a wrecked car, he realizes that at that end of our lives, when are about to face death, we will all ask these three burning questions: Did I live? Did I love? Did I matter?


Friend, this is my attempt to narrate such life-changing moment in the life of Brendon Burchard. A 19 year old kid who had a terrible break up with his girlfriend went on to change how he is living his life, how he is relating with other people, and how is serving the world. Today, he is a bestselling author, calls him “one of the most influential leaders in the field of personal growth”, and he is commonly cited as “the world’s leading high performance coach.”

I’m blessed to be learning from the man.

I take inspiration from him and what I will be sharing with you today are influenced by his teachings, combined with my own experience, observations, and learning from life’s events and encounters.

Before we are to face those three burning questions that Brendon shares, there is also this burning desire of something in our heart. It is just there. Sometimes, we do not even know what to call it. We cannot define it but we can describe it. There is this longing inside of us to do something greater, bigger, and larger than life. What is that?

This is embedded in the question: What do we desire to be?

We all can have different answers to this question. But those answers would boil down into these three: We desire to be alive. We desire to be present. We desire to be loving.

First, we desire to be alive. What does it mean to be alive? To be alive means fully alive. We are not just existing or merely surviving. We are living and thriving. We are fully alive!

That is our desire! We do not want to be like walking zombies. We do not want to be like lost souls. We do not want to be like robots or machines trying to do our routinary tasks day in and day out.

We desire to live our being human. This is our truth. We desire to be fully alive!

bantay abut

Second, we desire to be present. What does it mean to be present? To be present means to be in the moment. To be living not in the past or worried of the future. We desire to live in the now.

Some people are living in the past and worrying of what the future holds but if we go back to the core of our being, we all want to be right here, right now. We desire to be living in this moment, this present, and live this gift of life we have today!

Third, we desire to be loving. What does it mean to be loving? To be loving means to be of service to other people, to care for, to extend our life beyond our own.

This can be the love of a man or woman to his or her spouse or partner, this can be the love of a parent to a child or a child to his parent, this can be the love of a company to its customers and clients and its people, this can be the love of a leader to his organization, this can be the love of a person to the community he belongs, this can be the love of a citizen to his nation, this can be the love of a man or woman to the whole wide world.

This is translated in different versions. People say things like: I want to make a difference. I want to change the world. I want to make a dent in this universe.

It can be so grand as that but it starts with the small ones. Regardless of the size, we all have that desire to love! To serve!

So what do we desire? We desire to be alive, to be present, and to be loving. That is what we aspire. That is what we desire!

The question is not do we really desire these? The right question to ask is: Are you still connected to that desire? Do you still aspire to live that desire? Do you still push to live your truth that embodies that desire? I hope you and I are.

If this then is what we desire, the next questions to answer are: What do we long to do? And what do we need to have (to be able to do what we long to do)? We will answer these in the coming weeks.

Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, ACG, ALB is a speaker, trainer, and writer on personal and organizational leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit He is conducting the C3 Workshop on August 6 in Baguio City. For details and registration, go to  

C3 Workshop

You Are a Leader

Leadership is for everybody. That includes you. You don’t have to be a supervisor or manager before you become a leader. If you are influencing someone, you are leading. John Maxwell said, “Leadership is influence.”


Leadership does not depend on your position. Sometimes, even with a leadership position, people don’t even do their best to influence their team. But if you are in a leadership role, you better start maximizing your role and give it your best shot to be able to have that influence and impact that you wanted to have.

To have this, you and I need to receive guidance. Bestselling author Brendon Burchard, also a topnotch leader, shares his E6 of Leadership. In fact, he wrote a book about it that has been used by a lot of schools and companies. He talked about six powerful leadership practices that you and I need to imbibe and live by.


First, envision. Leaders need to envision a compelling vibrant future. The Bible says, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Brendon shares, “Where there is no vision, there is no leadership.”

Leaders need to practice envisioning. Ask questions like, “What should tomorrow be like for my team and for my life?”

Second, enlist. To be able to accomplish that vision that you have, you have to enlist your team to that vision. Take note that people support what they create. Involve your people in the ideation. Enlist them and involve them so they also will believe the dream that you have, so they will have this honest, authentic and genuine desire to that dream.

This comes with asking them questions, listening to them, and paying attention to their needs. This way, you can also adjust and align to their needs.

Third, embody. Leaders need to consistently embody their message. There should be congruence in what we dream and say. What we say we are after should align to how we are behaving. After all, we do not believe the message, we believe the messenger.

As leaders, it is also our task to champion the vision even and especially when time gets hard. As leaders, we need to stand for it.

Fourth, empower. Leaders have to empower their team. Enabling them will help build the trust for them to be able to work toward that vision that you have in the first. Equip them continually and allow them to succeed.

This is the reason why training and coaching has to be done consistently, too.

Fifth, evaluate. Evaluate the key people that are with us. Consider their contribution, their skills, and their ethics. Here are two questions that should be asked: Are we being excellent and ethical? Are we progressing?

Evaluation should be done daily, and it doesn’t have to be formal. This can be done informally. Sometimes, it is even preferred to have it informally. And in giving evaluation, it is important to give honest, immediate and constructive feedback.

Seventh, encourage. As leaders, you need to be a cheerleader for your team. Uplift them in a continual basis. Get them excited about things. Motivate them with your passion and example.

This is especially needed with teams you are working with in a long-term basis, in long-running projects. Take note that the longer the duration, the more struggle. So leaders need to consistently uplift the team. Times get tough so leaders need to get tough in inspiring and leading the team as well.

Ultimately, all these things should be done with honor, respect and love. And remember that even if you are paying your team, assume that they are volunteers. They are not captive slaves. They can bail out if they want to. Treat them as collaborators, after all, they are!

Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, ACG, ALB is a trainer and speaker on communication and personal leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit his website He will be conducting an intensive and interactive workshop for young and aspiring professionals in Baguio City. Join his C3 Workshop: Command Your Career Confidently on August 6. Check the details here.)

C3 Workshop

How to Say, I WON

At certain points in our life, we want to be able to say, “I won!” If possible, we want to be able to say it everytime. Of course, we won’t be able to do this. But we want to be able to do so in appropriate times.


Today, let us look into two ideas embedded in these two words: own and now.

OWN. You have to own your roles, responsibilities and your feelings. Don’t relinquish them to other people.

Role. Oftentimes, you are given a role that you have to own. You have to take charge. If you are given the role of a supervisor, then own the responsibility as a supervisor. If you are given the responsibility of a staff member, then own the responsibility as a staff member. Do your task. Contribute. Share your ideas.

Sometimes we lose because we don’t own our role. We try to own another role that is not ours. When we do this, we lose.

So what is your role in the company now? In your community? Own it!

Responsibility. In life, there are three circles. (I learned this from Stephen Covey.) There is the circle of concern. It is a big one that encloses all the things that you are concerned of. Within this circle is a small circle which is your circle of influence. And within this circle is a smaller circle called circle of control.

Of the things that are within your circle of control, you take charge. Plants seeds of hard work and smart work. Make the decision. Take control.

Of the things that are in your circle of influence but outside of your control, simply influence them with your words and works. Of the things that are within your circle of concern but outside of your influence, plants seeds of prayer. When you do this, you will be able to own those that you can.

Yes, work on those that you can control. Speak words of influence to those you can. And pray for those you cannot. Do not interchange these things. When you do, you will lose.

Feelings. We feel something brought about by circumstances going on around us. But nobody will ever make you feel that you feel other than you yourself. You feel the way you feel because of you, where you are coming from, your background, your orientation, your attitude, your mindset, your map. Thus, do not blame someone else if you feel something that is not good. You decide to feel that way because you choose to focus on something that is making you feel that way.

To own your feelings and take charge, be mindful of what you are focusing on. Are you focusing on the things that will bring you joy, energy, hope, faith and love? Or are you focusing on the negative that will bring you feelings of blame, despair and sadness? You don’t want to have the latter. You have to focus on the good.

How you view the outside world dictates how you feel. So nourish yourself with wonderful things, words, music, and wisdom. This will help you experience more joy and happiness.

NOW. There is magic in the now. There is a present in the present. It is the gift of chance.

Now is the moment to finally do what you need to do. Now is the time to act and do something. Now is the time to read that book. Now is the time to sing that song. Now is the time to finally put into action that plan. Now is the time to sign up to that learning event. Now is the time to join that organization that you build you up. Whatever that good thing to do is, now is the time!

Even consider the area of personal finance. Investment experts would ask, “When is the best time to invest if you haven’t been investing?” The answer is, “NOW!” Now is the time. Not yesterday. Not two years ago. Not tomorrow. Now is the time.

What is that thing that you need to do? What is that field that you want to win in?

Remember that today is the moment, the present, the gift that you need to take advantage of right now. Do it now!

What is that thing that you have been delaying?

Sometimes what chains us is the aspiration to perfection. The longing of perfection is ok. But if it is used to delay your projects, to delay your products and services, to delay your way of serving the people around you, that may be a mistaken desire to perfection. Stop trying to perfect things and start aspiring for progress. Serve now and grow in the process.

Is there a project that you need to start? Now is the time to finally take action. This way, you can also take charge. This way, you are able to own.

With these two big ideas in this two seemingly small words – own and now – you will be able to say I WON in due time. Today, make that decision. Go do it!


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, ACG, ALB is a trainer and speaker on communication and personal leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit his website Watch his daily videos: #ConfidenceCode on Get a free PDF report titled ‘7 Money Manners’ on

PS: Attend the first ever C3 Workshop in Baguio City. This is an intensive and interactive workshop for young and aspiring professionals. Click here for details.

C3 Workshop

Dreaming Has No Age

A man was sitting at the porch and watching his grandchildren playing in the park. As he sips his hot cup of coffee, he thinks about his dreams and asks himself how he can better further his plans to expand his business and give back to the community. At the age of 77, he is still dreaming for something big.

You are not too young or too old to be bold for your goals.


Don’t settle! Life is excited for you. You may be a teenager, in your 20’s, 30’s, 40’s, or even older.

One Sunday, I met with five youth leaders – Gemma who just finished her doctorate studies, Jim and Jane who are in college, Gary who is in Grade 9, and Betty who is planning to come up with an event for the youth. These five youth leaders are in varying ages – three of them are young while the two are not so young.

These five are busy with their personal lives. They are in different endeavours in different levels and in different areas. Oh yes, they also have different eyes, different styles, and different smiles. But there is a commonality in them: I sensed that they have big dreams and they are on fire with aspirations.

Gemma who has been teaching for five years did not settle. She pursued further studies and now she just got her PhD. Jim, aside from studying in school, has been active in his youth organization. He has been going around the country and abroad to help further the cause of young people. He has been to Thailand, Korea and Africa. This young man is learning and contributing a lot to his group.

Beside Jim is Jane who said she was taking up BS Chemical Engineering. I asked her, “Is being a Chemical Engineer your childhood dream?” She smiled and thought for a while. Then she replied, “Not exactly but I love Science!” Gary, who is seated next to her, was all ears and wearing a full smile. He is the amiable yet silent guy.

We asked him some questions but he did not utter a thing. But with his smile and the sparkle in his eyes, I sensed that he is thinking about something grand. He wasn’t able to articulate it at that moment but I like to believe that there is something great in him – a potential waiting to be unleashed.

At the end of the table is Betty. We turned our attention to her, “How about you?” She just said, “That’s a wonderful question… difficult to answer!” Then she blinked like a baby and fell silent. To that particular question, she did not answer a thing. But what was good about her is she exerts effort to organize an event for the welfare of the youth. Now that speaks loudly of a dream she has in her heart.

Different ages, styles and personalities do not deter someone from firing up a dream. So regardless of your age, you’ve got to reignite the fire of your dreams.

What are your dreams? What have you done to achieve them? What will you do to achieve them? Or have you stopped dreaming? Maybe, it’s time to reconsider. The past year, what have you done to fulfil your dreams?

Reassess. Evaluate your daily and weekly schedules. Do they lead you to the achievement of your dreams? If yes, congratulations! If not, get back on track.

To dream is for everyone. To the not-so-young, don’t say dreams are just for the young. To the young, don’t say that achievements are just for those of old age.

Have you heard of that old man (in his 60’s) who took the Philippine bar exams in 2014? Have you heard of the young teenage boy who spoke on the famous stage of TEDTalk? Have you heard of that man who started speaking at the age of 13 and is now a bestselling author and a widely sought-after speaker?

These people had dreams regardless of their age. Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “The time is always right to do what is right.” Jumping off from this solid statement, Jim Key (2003 World Champion in Public Speaking) went on to say, “If it’s right for us to dream as children, then it’s just as right for us to dream as adults.”

If you think you are too young or too old to start dreaming and achieving something, think again. You are not too young or too old to aspire for more. Yes, you too can dream!


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(This is an excerpt from the book Living Large in the Little Things by Chris Dao-anis. This book is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. Chris is also a trainer and speaker on communication and personal leadership. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit his website at

Wait, Who Is He Again?

Mrs. Ayala put on a party for his only son. It will be the first time he will be introducing him to his friends. During the party, the guests would approach the little boy and ask his name.

He would reply, “I’m Mrs. Ayala’s son.”

His mother, who is standing nearby, approached him and said, “Son, don’t say you are Mrs. Ayala’s son. Say, I’m James Ayala. Ok?”

Then came another guest and asked, “Aren’t you Mrs. Ayala’s son?”

The boy replied, “I thought I was. But she said I’m not.”

Just like that innocent boy, I was once a boy. And in my innocence, I once misunderstood my mother. “Once” in this sentence means “many times before.”

I’m Mrs. Dao-anis’ son. (Belated Happy Mother’s Day to my mother.) For some, that’s hard to read or spell. The other week, they wrote in my nametag “Danao-is.” It might have been worse had I used my full first name, Cristito, which some would change to Cristitutu.

For you not to give me a wrong name, you can just call me with my nickname: CHRIS. Yes, I’m Chris and I’m cool! I can only say that because you are a cool reader.

I have been writing in this blog  since 2010. You may have known me already. But today, I felt the need to reintroduce myself for you not to say, “Wait, who is he again?”

I’m Chris. And each letter of my nickname says something: C-H-R-I-S.

That’s me (3rd from left) playing gongs with my folks!

C is for CORDILLERAN. I’m a pure Cordilleran. And we don’t call ourselves Igorot (I-gorot, with the stress on the first syllable). We call ourselves, Igorot (Igu-rut, with the stress on the second syllable.) And we even say it with our thick accent with an addition at the end, “Igurut adi!” No, I’m not angry. That’s just how we enunciate it!


C also means CONTRIBUTING CREATOR (with a small c). I create books, blogs and articles. But at first, I was a selfish creator. I would write but I keep them to myself. Only after being wheedled several times to share my works did I decide to do so. In 2013, I published my first book; the second in 2014; and the third in 2016. I thank our Creator for helping me become a small creator in my own ways.

H is for HUMBLE. But they say, when you are humble, you don’t claim it. Or you are no longer humble. Since I am humble, I don’t have to mention it. Oh wait, did I just claim that I am humble? 🙂


H also means HANDSOME. Yes, I know it’s hard to imagine that but what you see is what you get. When you see me, you see my face. Handsome? Neither did I believe I am handsome until my girlfriend said so. Thank God for my supportive girlfriend. I hope she won’t wear eyeglasses to correct her vision. Or I should start teaching her to sing, “You will always be handsome in my eyes.”

R is for ROMANTIC. But before my girlfriend protests, let me change it.

R also means REPEATER. Here’s what I have learned: Repetition is the mother of skills. Since I know that I have a lot to learn in the fundamentals of public speaking, I am going for my 5th run on my Competent Communication manual in Toastmasters.

chris tm

I is for INTERESTING. Let’s leave it that way to make you interested. 🙂


I also means INTROVERT. Yes, I am. I process my thoughts inwardly. And I gain and regain energy in solitary quiet moments. (Read my other more serious articles for the explanation.)

S is for SIMPLE. Although I can go complicated sometimes, so maybe I’m not that simple. But I am! Wait, I sound complicated right now, do I?

S also means SINGLE. But taken. Not taken for granted, but taken seriously.

But seriously, S stands for SERIOUS. I was a serious writer and speaker. I was also seriously shy. But seriously, I’m not being serious here. I’m trying to learn to be funny. But seriously, yes. I realized that being funny is a serious skill. So this year, I am doing my 5th CC with a new battle cry: #SeriouslyHumorousSpeaking2017. I will try!

I hope you will journey with me and support me as we continue to support each other. Do drop by in one of our Toastmasters meetings.

Once again, I’m CHRIS. Creator. Handsome. Introvert. Repeater. Serious. In other words, I’m CHRIS and I’m cool. And I can only say that because YOU are a cool reader.

Stay tuned for more empowering articles. Til next week!


Live your life, young mind!

Chris Dao-anis

(Chris Dao-anis, CPA, ACG, ALB is a trainer and speaker on communication and personal leadership. His latest book ‘Living Large in the Little Things’ is available at Mt. Cloud Bookshop, Casa Vallejo, Upper Session Road, Baguio City. For talks and trainings, email him at or visit his website Watch his daily videos: #ConfidenceCode on Get a free PDF report titled ‘7 Money Manners’ on