The Fourth Industrial Revolution: It seems a scary type of being as we look at it from the lens of a third world country like the Philippines, where I came from. Are we there yet as a country? In some ways, yes. But in more ways, no. We are the top texting capital of the world, so that would make us belong to the 4th industrial revolution. Right? We have upgraded our systems so that we can also use Gcash when we pay even when we buy from a sari-sari store. So, it makes us attuned with technology. Right? But do not forget, that our dear farmers are still using the carabaos and the wooden plows in the fields. Do not forget that some of our fellow citizens still do not have their own toilets. Do not forget that some of our fellow citizens do not even have an FB account. Yes, true. We may feel that we are technologically advanced already but there are many of our fellow citizens who are still searching for food in the heap of garbage at the Payatas grounds and elsewhere.
We belong to the third world. Yes, we may feel disenfranchised and marginalized from the world view. But no, we may see it from a positive perspective; as an opportunity to build from our strengths.
What do we have that other countries may not have? We should look at it that way. We cannot be disheartened with the fact of being a poor country. We cannot be frustrated that we do not belong to the upper rich countries of this world. We must look from within and see what our country can offer. We are our country. So, what can we offer? What can you offer?
What do you have that others do not have? Looking from a personal view point, what do you have? What are your strengths? This is the way to survive in this fast-changing world.
The fourth industrial revolution is characterized by speed of breakthroughs. The physical, digital, and biological structures have converged to disrupt our ways of doing things. Production of goods, raising and growing cattle and the like, the making of medicines, 3D printing, the new phase of distribution of goods, and such others have become significantly improved from before. Speed!
Thanks to technological and digital advances, the world has become narrower not smaller. Narrower because the gap between those who have much versus those who have little has widened.
Communication has become a commodity and more and more people have access to data and information. Transparency has become a shout-out because people now are becoming more aware of the impact of events and things to their lives. People care! People matter!
So, for the youth of this age of 4th industrial revolution, how would you respond?
If you were on a dance floor with many people and you want to be noticed, how do you think should you dance along with the music? Would you dance as the way the others are dancing? Would you just sway yourself around? No, right?
- If you want to get noticed, surely, before coming to the dance floor, you would have prepared an authentic dress – something not superfluous or extravagant that you could not afford, but something that stands out. Stand out!
- If you want to get noticed, would you dance in the corner while lowering your head and cowardly hide? Surely not. If you want to get noticed, you will dance at the center of the dance floor because you are confident that you have practiced your authentic dance steps. You will stand tall because you believe in yourself. Stand tall!
- If you want to get noticed, would you dance by making others uncomfortable with you? Surely not! You will want them to like the way you dance. Right? Gravitate to people!
Standing out. It would take a lot of planning to stand out. You have to think about your end-goal. What is it that you want to achieve? How will you do this? What are the steps that you need to do to accomplish your goal? What are the resources that you need? More importantly, assess and evaluate where you are now. What do you need to get to where you want?
Standing tall. It would take a lot of discipline, determination, diplomacy, and diligence (4Ds) to get to where you want to be. Nothing happens just by waiting for grace to jump on you. You have to strive for that goal. You must be ready to bear and face challenges. You must be ready to accept failures. You must be ready to rise after every fall. You must be ready to tell yourself, “I will not give up!”
Gravitating to people. It takes a lot of courage to get affirmation from others. But this world is about relationships and connectivity. No man is an island. You cannot be great when you feel that others are not as good as you. Self-esteem and humility would tell you that many others are better than you. But you sustain your self-resolution and self-commitment to your plan; you are born unique and never less. So, to make other people like you or whatever you are doing, you have to like them first and respect what they are doing, too. RESPECT for others is very important. It is the most basic Christian value that you must clothe yourself with. Reach out when you need help. Do not be timid. Do not be shy to ask for help. It is okay to let others know that you are in want. Who is not? It is okay to fail. Who has not? It is alright to make mistakes. Who has been correct all the time? Just stand up and let others lift you up. No one can be by himself. We are born to be with people. Gravitate.
This 4th industrial revolution may be predominantly driven by divergence of all technologies; yet, one thing remains: PEOPLE CULTURE. People with good values, people who believe in themselves, people who respect others would still be the most important factors at work, in the community, and in the family. These things remain because these are the basics of our humanity. We are after all uniquely human and no AI, no technology, no biotechnology, nothing can take that away from us. We are born with body, mind, heart, and soul. No one else has that but man.
Be proud that you are a Filipino. Be proud that you are the youth of today. Be proud of your community. Be proud of your family. Be proud of who you are. Stand out. Stand tall. Gravitate to people.