I could have given up blogging if the idea of coming up a new blogging organization didn't pop out in our crazy and unpredictable minds. I could have missed out a lot of wonderful, life-changing opportunities - in strengthening genuine friendships, developing new ones, hurdling challenges and roadblocks, and finally letting go and closing cycles.

Six brave incorporators. Proud to be one!
I could have slipped the chance of having an avenue for growth that was way far better than what I thought was my comfort zone. I could have compromised my growth because I was too afraid.

Too afraid to make a different choice because the future was something I wasn't prepared for. Too hesitant to build something new because the environment I was immersed at that moment made me always doubt my capacity.

But then, some risks are really worth taking.

Because just when we think that things are falling apart, little did we know that things are actually falling into place.

Being a part of the Davao Digital Influencers, Inc., did not only become a new venue to hone my skills, or re-ignited my passion for writing at great lengths, but it continuously shaped me in bringing out the best of my character.

Being a part of this blogging group did not only add people in my growing list of social circles, but finding an extended breed of family I can always call home. And I have always been grateful for the moments that go beyond just attending events and doing promotions, and for the people who are always ready to call me out when I'm misbehaving just because they genuinely care for me.

More importantly, a new environment brought in a new perspective - my paradigm on influence now goes beyond popularity or going viral, or the number of followers or likes in social media, but as a means of creating a positive impact on people and making the social media a better place than when I entered it.

Because I believe that this interest in writing accompanied with the opportunity of influence did not come accidentally but on purpose, and if I have such as a gift from God, I also have the sole responsibility to use it to inspire rather than insult, encourage rather than humiliate, and to respond with compassion instead of condemnation. 

After all, what I shout out in my own little space on this side of the web speaks more of me, not of others, and if there's a legacy I'd like to leave in this world, I will always choose to be remembered as someone who build others up rather than destroy them - that for me is what influence is truly about.

Teaching Ati kids during our Azalea Boracay media tour. 

While I have not seen radical improvements in my blogging career for the past year as I thought so, I am more thankful how it moulded the more important things in life - my perspective and character, and that for me, matter more than anything else. Much love and gratitude to my fellow Davao Digital Influencers, Inc. for fueling my passion and for always reminding me of the real value of influence. 

Much love and appreciation also to our generous sponsors and partners, most especially as we celebrate our first anniversary:

Platinum: Smart Communications, Inc., AirAsia, FWD Life Philippines
Gold: PLDT Home Silver: Jolly Canned Fruits and Vegetables
Bronze: Abreeza Ayala Mall
Benefactors: Lachi's Sans Rival Atbp., Cecil's Snack Inn & Restaurant, Seda Abreeza Hotel, Marco Polo Davao, Park Inn by Radisson Hotel Davao, M Magazine.

In a span of one year, never did I regret making such decision nor did I long to be where I was, because certainly, where I am right now is where I am meant to be.

Happy Anniversary, #TEAMDDI!

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