Treat life like a game of chess, says Bea Plondaya

“God gives his hardest battles to his strongest and toughest soldiers.”

Success can be achieved if one treats life the way one plays the game of chess.
“Playing chess requires focus, tactical strategy and pure mental concentration, said Blessed Bea Plondaya, a fourth year high school student of St. Joseph School Iloilo.

“The same is required in a student’s life. You need to have focus and dedication as you set your eyes on all your aspirations. Tactical strategy is as vital in taking risks and looking at the possible challenges one may encounter. Lastly, pure mental concentration in a sense that you have to use not only your heart but also your mind in making choices,” she said.

And since she practices what she preaches, Plondaya has earned the following accomplishments recently; number one most outstanding student of the Outstanding Students Circle of Iloilo(OSCI), number two in the The Outstanding Students of Iloilo Awards (TOSIA) Circle of 5 and the fourth most outstanding student of the Private Schools and School Administrators Association of the Philippines, regional level.

With peer pressure and high expectations as the topmost challenges that students face, Plondaya believes that her 4Ps will guide them.

They are: plan purposefully, prepare prayerfully, proceed positively and pursue passionately.

“We are surrounded by a lot of people - others who support and others who criticize and try to pull us down. I was taught to believe that 90% of our life is made up of unexpected circumstances but what matters is how we use the remaining 10% that solely belongs to us. It is in that 10% that we make a choice whether we follow, challenge or divert the paths pressured to us by our peers. I think we have to weigh the pros and cons before we make a choice,” says the daughter of Julius and Cheza Plondaya, both teachers.

Plondaya also has time for other things apart from her academics. She’s into dancing, reading, writing poems and plays, listening to music, using social networking sites, playing chess, directing and journalistic writing.
Interestingly, she started directing plays when she was in Grade 6.

“I dreamt of going to Julliard School of Performing Arts to major in directing. It just started when I was in Grade 5 and we had mini plays in our classrooms that I was so hooked up on it that when I was in Grade 6, I became the all-around director, props manager and script writer of the broadway musical Grease,” she said.

Then in 2011, her major break came when she wrote an original play entitled “Capture – Performing Academy” which was performed before all Josephians. It was followed by a sequel, “Capture – The Novices.”

At present, she continues to write down random scripts, she said.

Plondaya is also a budding journalist. This year, she was National Schools Press Conference qualifier for News Writing and ranked first Most Outstanding Campus Journalist of the Philippines. Last year, she was a qualifier for Sports Writing.
“I always want to make sure that I become a role model to the youth of today. I wanted ever since to make my journalistic work an instrument for the youth to be aware that the world needs people like us, vulnerable, yet steadfast in standing up for what is right, young, wild and free, yet dedicated and responsible in creating change for the betterment of oneself and others. Lastly, it is always my dream and fervent wish that as young individuals, we will have the chance to be what we can be with the guidance of responsible adults,” she said.

And whenever she is faced with a tough challenge, this motto keeps her going: “God gives his hardest battles to his strongest and toughest soldiers.” (By Kathy M. Villalon, TNT Libre, March 19, 2013)

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