Human Rights and Human Lives

Many Filipinos, some of them highly educated, applauded the president when he said that his concern is not human rights but human lives.

Sorry, but this is illogical.

He is not alone. Many of our legislators and government officials who applauded him during his third SONA betrayed the intentions of this illogical thinking through their actions.

Remember, my dear readers, that during the SONA of the President, some of the provinces in the Philippines were under the state of calamity. But there was no mention of this in the SONA. Also, our congressmen were more interested in replacing the Speaker of the House than easing the human lives of our kababayans. No one told us about how they plan to promote human lives of our kababayans. Two days after the SONA, they were still talking about who should be House Speaker, Deputy Speakers, and the legitimate minority.

Why They Believed that Human Lives Are More Important that Human Rights

Remember how the Hutus murdered 800,000 Tutsis  in Rwanda? Or the Klu Klux Klan who believed that the lives of a white man is more important that the colored ones. You must have also heard of the Rohingya Genocide.

These people have the same mindset as those Filipino politicians (and their die-hard supporters) who believe that the lives of the poor Filipino rumored to have been using drugs aren’t important.

They believe that their lives are more important than others.

They think they are just defending themselves from “possible” criminals. They were just protecting their families from who those who might one day rape their daughters or kill their sons.

More than twenty thousand Filipinos, most of them you and I didn’t know, who were just a number in a statistics in the President’s War on Drugs, had been killed. Ninety nine percent of these crimes are still classified as “deaths under investigation”.

DUIs speak of either the inefficiency of our government to solve crimes and promote peace and order–  or its  efficiency to commit crimes and sow terror.

Peoples of the world have progressed with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. But some people are left behind. For example, there are Filipinos who don’t value the lives of the poorest of the poor.

Because very few fight for the human rights of the poor, they are easily disposed. Drug Lords have the protection of politicians. Many believe that they have easy access to those who are in power, with those who dine with the President.

But I can see that there is a growing number of people who are now speaking in behalf of those who are afraid.

Change is coming.

We need humane change.

We cannot progress as a nation unless we change our hearts.

Every human life is sacred and every Filipino’s human rights must be protected.

Foremost of this human rights is the right to life.

You and I must do something, in our own capacity as parents, to teach our children about the value of life and the respect of human rights.

You and I must do something, in our own capacity as professionals, to educate others about the importance of the respect for human rights so we can protect and promote human lives.

You and I, as Filipinos, must show in our thoughts and deeds, that we value human rights.


Don’t Hug the Ball

Okay, there are times that you really need to hug the ball.  You want to call a time out.

But for most of us, we tend to hug the ball too much and for too long.

Your ball (your life or whatever dreams you have in life) must keep on moving.  I realized that one reason why I am not able to get the most in life is because I am hugging the ball for too long.

I must keep it moving towards the goal. I can dribble it myself…or I must pass it to someone. But I must keep the ball moving. And I too must move along with it.

This is very simple I know. And we just have to keep it simple.

Pass the ball.

Jef Menguin

P.S. I have started a new blog series in called TIPS. Visit the site. There might be something that can inspire you to move today.


Follow your passion.

Does you compass always points to north?

There are two kinds of compasses in this life. The first compass is believed to be pointing its needle to magnetic north. Society believes when you received this kind of compass, you’ll be able to navigate life.

It is easy to believe this,  at first glance, because it seems everyone believe rely on this compass.

Society introduced this kind of compass to us in our family, in schools, in churches, by mentors, and by leaders we believed and followed.

At second glance, however, when you compare all of these compasses given to us by the society, you’ll soon discover that the needles point to different norths. There are times, the north of one compass is directly opposite to others.

Now, the  second kind of  compass I was telling you is that compass you must have seen in a movie. The other compass is like that of Captain Sparrow. The compass appears to be useless for most people. It does not show you north.

It’s up to you now, Jack. This compass points towards what you want most. Never betray it. ―Morgan to Jack Sparrow

It points to what you want most in life. It points to your passion. It points to what you love.

And I am thinking. What compasses am I holding today? Which one must I use?

I will follow my passion. I will do what I love most. I will be the person that I want to be. I will follow that which will make me most valuable. I will go there where I can be happy. I will go where my heart is.

My friends, which compass are you going to use today?



Does a new experience frighten you?

Seth Godin hit the nail on its head: having an experience for the first time is frightening.

I am sure that I know what I am going to do.  I have figured out my marketing and service delivery strategies. I have tested the ideas so many times in my head. If I had the right people, there was no way we could fail.

But I do not know the future.

And I don’t know who are the people I am going to work with in this new project I have to handle for a company that I was once a president.  I will be leading a new team and I  know only one of them. All the other seven members exist only in my imagination.

I imagined these people to be action-oriented, with high level of business acumen, creative, and who will not stop until we win. Unfortunately, I never had these kind of team members before.

Either most people are excellent during interviews — or I am not good at finding really great talents. I have read many books on behavioral interviewing. But reading books doesn’t really give you the same experience as interviewing few people most of whom are not the persons you wish you had.

This is why a new experience frightens me — though having a new experience is the one thing that excites me most.

I have led  many teams. I have helped many leaders improve their teams. But handling a new team is always a new experience — and each new experience is not something you can put in an old box. That’s not how it works.

Yes, a new experience frightens me. But a new experience also excites me. And what keeps me moving is that my excitement for the future is greater that whatever fear I have. And this excitement is not because I have positive mental attitude.

Dreams come true only when we accept and create new experiences. It is okay to be frightened as long as you keep moving forward.


Powerful Beyond Measure

Do you sometimes feel that you are inadequate, that you are not good enough?

I will talk about that today. But before I speak, let me share with you this poem from Marianne Williamson

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.  It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous?

Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.

As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

My biggest challenge as a leader is not to find the best people, but to help people bring out the best in them. Leaders are salespersons. They must sell greatness hidden in the very people they serve.

Many people do not embrace their greatness. They measure themselves based on their past mediocre and inadequate performances. And what is their excuse? They have meager amount of talent. They aren’t good enough because they don’t have enough.

And that is not true. Some of us aren’t “good enough” because we gave more attention to our limitations that we neglected the use of our powers.

It is in discovering and embracing one talent that will lead us to another…and the use of newly found talents will lead us to some more.

And when we discover it in ourselves, we shall also discover it in others.

That’s because we will start to recognize it easily having recognized it in ourselves. It is like having your eyes closed for very long, believing that you were blind, and now that you have opened them you start seeing beauty and wonders you have not imagined nor thought about before.

You are not inadequate. You have powers. And when you use those powers you will become powerful beyond measure.

Have a great powerful day my friend.


Live your legend.

Personal development isn’t just about learning new skills and mindset. It is not only about getting better and better everyday.

We pursue personal development so we can live our own legend today. We are writing the chapters in the book we call life.

Everyday is a chance to tell a story to the people who matter to me most. It is a chance to be an inspiration to people whose lives we touch everyday.

Everyday is an adventure. And everyday can be our last. Live your legend today.

Jef Menguin