This I Believe…

Annoyingly fidgeting with my pen, nervously glancing at the clock, obliviously avoiding the teacher’s lecture, I watched the last ten minutes of class pass by–­­wasted. Often times I gave up in the last ten minutes of class, thinking of other things or desiring to get out of class early. As a matter of fact, I spent most of my spare time thinking of food, staring at a certain spot, dreaming about something irrelevant, or just sleeping.Whether I was in the subway, bus, or at home at the dinner table, I never put any value in the extra ten minutes in my life. Now, I believe that a mere ten minute of hard work bears much fruit.

“Try practicing for ten minutes extra every day. I have heard that an average human being displays their highest concentration in ‘ten minutes’. I guarantee you’ll start seeing results,” she said. Ever since I was young, I wanted to join the Worship band in my church as a keyboardist. However, I lacked skills in reading chords without any notes and improvising the melodies for different songs. Driven by my dream to join the band, I listened to my teacher by practicing for thirty minutes a day instead of my usual twenty minutes. Day after day, I passionately printed new chord sheets and practiced those songs for exactly thirty minutes. I did not waste a minute thinking or wondering; I stuck to my word and, sometimes, even closed my eyes, memorizing all the chords.

After about two months of spending ten extra minutes practicing the piano, I found myself in front of the Worship band leader, anxiously waiting for him to give me the audition piece. When he handed the song sheet to me, I read the four repeated letters, D, G, C, D in my head. I placed my shaky hands on the keyboard and took a deep breath. As I started playing the song, I was miraculously surprised at myself; I was playing a completely new piece of music smoothly and melodically. After finishing my audition, while the last note was still ringing in my ear, the band leader said, “wow, I never saw someone use the chords in such a creative way.” Just like that, he invited me to join the band and to this day, I persistently play the keyboard every Sunday morning.

Realizing that my piano teacher’s tip really worked, I decided to commit to another ten-minute project. Every night, at 10:00 PM, I turn on the computer and open a video called “Ten Minute Abs.” I wanted to lose weight especially in my stomach area and also firm up my muscles. Instead of wasting time watching TV, I spent ten minutes doing intense ab workouts. I am proud to say that over the past two months, I have lost two kilograms, fitting into jeans that were too tight for me.

Ten minutes, if used wisely, can become a good habit. Ten minutes, if built up consistently, can be the seed to many accomplishments. Simply reading for ten minutes in the bus, one can finish a novel. Talking to a friend for ten minutes, one can build a great relationship. Now I know the significance of ten minutes. When my classmates start packing up with the thought of, ‘only ten more minutes of class left’, I pay attention very carefully, absorbing every word the teacher says. I believe that ten minutes of investment every day can change my life.




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