In my life, sometimes, I have embraced changes and the other times, I have resisted them. However, every time I had to make a critical decision, I went with my gut feelings and wherever my life took me. Sometimes, I realized about my wrong decisions only when I was experiencing consequences. However, most of the times, changes in my life opened new and exciting avenues up for me. Having lived 35 years of my life, I think I have done well and I am doing very good.
Talking about changes, yes, there were times that I resisted them. Once, I had an aggressive verbal argument with a newly appointed managing director of a company that I worked for regarding changing a company styling guideline. As a senior data visualization specialist, I believed, I should do the right thing for the company and that’s what I was fighting for. Although I still believe in what I was fighting for, I think I should have taken a different approach in that situation. I should have embraced the changes.
Even when I was growing up, I used to be very conservative. I strongly believed in Sri Lankan cultural values and Buddhist teachings. My friends never thought that I would ever leave Sri Lanka. On the day that my wife and I migrated to United States, I remember my best friend in high school said, “I never thought Chathura will ever leave Sri Lanka.” After living 5 years in a Western culture, do I still believe in Sri Lankan cultural values and Buddhist teachings? Yes, I am also embracing the freedom and values that my new resident country has offered me.
When it comes to my education and career, growing up, I wanted to become a doctor. I started my high school studies with hopes of attending medical college afterwards. During high school, life threw extremely hard challenges at me, and I admit, I failed. After high school, I started my first job as an accounts assistant at an insurance company. It didn’t take very long for me to realize that I need a change—so, I changed the company. I joined another insurance company as an accounts executive, and in less than a year, I realized accounting was not my thing.
Then came the most exciting first chapter of my life. I joined a management consulting firm as a data visualization specialist where I had more freedom to be creative. My opinions and creative ideas were given a value there, which I loved. This experience helped me to bring out the creative person hidden in me. I thoroughly enjoyed working there until THE BEST BOSS I have ever worked with left the company. Then came many changes which most of the veterans didn’t like. Luckily, I got my opportunity to start the next exciting chapter of my life—moving to the United States. However, I am still wondering, what would I do if I had to work there with those new changes? Would I embrace them or leave the company?
People say, when you move from a third-world country like Sri Lanka to a well-developed country like United States, you can get a cultural shock. Surprisingly, I embraced the changes very quickly and smoothly. I was very excited about new opportunities that were presented to me. I am a liar if I say, last 5 years in the States has been just awesome. There were extremely difficult times. However, with a great support from my wife and my good friends, I adjusted and changed my life accordingly.
After middle school, I didn’t do very well with my studies. I had a point to prove to myself—so, I went back to school. I challenged myself and earned my Bachelor’s Degree in Photography with a 4.0 CGPA and I was honored Summa Cum Laude and the membership of the National Honor Society, Alpha Beta Kappa. I don’t think I could’ve achieved something like this if I did not embraced changes in my life.
I have made great friends and met wonderful people along the way of my life. I met all of them because I embraced changes. I believe, a life without changes is boring and not successful. My parents, my wife, my siblings, my friends, relatives, and all the great people that I have met will stay in my heart forever. However, for the rest of my life, I will go wherever my life takes me, embracing changes!