Saturday, June 14, 2014

GOTCHA, MY LOVE: COMPARING THE PROCESS OF FINDING YOUR SPECIAL SOMEONE AND CONDUCTING SCHOLARLY RESEARCH


(This is a repost of an entry that I wrote two days ago while I'm waiting for the rain to stop.)

I've been working for a few hours now in a nearby Cafe. As you all know I'm (kinda! *thunder*) busy doing my dissertation, trying to save the world (as if!). Thank goodness so far my sanity is in tact. And for the past 300 minutes, I've been drafting my paper for presentation in a conference in Melbourne. Literature review here and there. Synthesizing my notes. And basically brainstorming alone (what an isolating experience! hahaha!). Suddenly I've felt the urge to write a creative piece (I am taking the opportunity to write a creative piece as part of my let's bust the stress campaign!). I don't know if it's really creative but what I will write is about comparing finding your special someone and doing "scholarly" research. Whether you are in a relationship, in a chaotic relationship, in a soon-to-be-single status, or simply finding your special someone, I hope you will be able to appreciate (or fall in love) with my entry entitled "Gotcha, My Love: Comparing the process of finding your special someone and conducting scholarly research.

If you're all set to fall in love while conducting research then here we go!


I've been trained as a researcher since highschool. It was in my Filipino and English class in highschool that I produced my "typewritten" final research projects (yeah, we used typewriter back then!). Of course research didn't stop in highschool. In the jungle of UP where I took my Bachelors and Masters, I further developed my research skills. Eventually after realizing that I want to do more research and be as mobile as possible (or shall we say move and settle in another country), I pushed through with my PhD. Basically my PhD research stems from my experiences as an OFW. So how did I come up with this blog entry? Simple. I am currently in love. And I am inspired (more). And I finally found the special person in my life. His name  is Guy. Yes, after 31 years of moving around countries and living a busy life, I've found love and more inspiration in Melbourne. *giggles* And honestly, I do wish and plan to settle in the land down undah with my special someone.

Before I begin sharing my insights about love, let me talk about conducting research. If you're a working professional, a highschool student or in college, I understand that you know how to conduct research. You did your thesis so you know about research. But as a refresher let me share with you the basic sections in research.

In research, the most important part is the research question or the statement of the problem. The question or the statement of the problem is the reason why you conduct research, to find find answers and confront intersecting nuances or differences. Then you have the literature review. This is the portion wherein you refer to previous scholarly works and where you find gaps. Your research is basically a contribution in the gaps of research that you identify. Once you identify the gaps and the problem you are trying to solve, you start collecting data. You use a methodology. It is either quantitative or qualitative in approach. If you choose qualitative (which is my specialization), you embark on in-depth interviews, field notes, participant observation, or ethnography. If you choose qualitative, you refer to statistical methods. Data analysis comes after coding. After analysing your data, you come up with your findings, and eventually the conclusion. After completing all sections of your research, you are now ready to work and present a summary of your research called abstract.

So how is research similar with finding your special someone? Let's try to connect. I will try. Let's see.

To try to find your special someone is like an engaging  (tedious at times) research. You, yes you, research or find your special someone. Basically the questions, "where, when and how will I find my love?" After putting that question in your mind, you ask your friends (seek their help or they set you on a date! lol). It is like literature review. You learn from their experience, either on the happy (healthy) and devastating (fatal) aspect of being in a relationship. As soon you get to know your friends' relationship situations - past or present - you get to learn which areas of being in a relationship should be done, or on a preliminary stage of finding your special one, you get an idea how to jumpstart your quest of meeting people and building encounters. After your "literature review" with your friends, you think about your methodology. On a quantitative approach, you collect and select (lol!). On a qualitative approach, you simply engage with one person, get to know that person, and immerse yourself with that person. In short, you go on an in-depth "dating". In an in-depth dating, you conduct "date observation", you do "field notes" on assessing if your date is fit for you, and on a long term arrangement, you engage "ethnographically". An ethnographic approach is where you visit the house of your date, you meet your date's family and friends, and there's "deep hanging out" to assess your "date" in its natural "habitat". After engaging with your "date" as a "data", you start analyzing, questioning or confronting the advantages and disadvantages. After deep reflections, you're ready to make your final decision or conclusion: "to be with this person". In conclusion,  if you say yes to that person, then that person is now you're special someone and the quest for finding one is OVAH! Once you get into a relationship you become part of the literature of love and relationships. You become a "love scholar" in a particular experience with your "finding my special someone" research. The summary of your research will be placed in your abstract. See? smart processes and approaches can be applied in the abstract aspect of love! 

So how did I find my special someone? Just like you I've made it through the wilderness (sounds like a song!). I've been exposed to different data (dates!). Through a compare and contrast approach (so much reflections and visualization), I've been hurt. I've been disappointed. And I've been rewarded (with my special someone's coming! Wohoo!).I've also learned from the experiences of my friends (they're a source of an enriching literature review). But at the end of the day, the analysis and final decision (conclusion) will come from you, your engagement with your data (date!lol), and your longitudinal* (long term) research process and development. See? research can be applied in real life and in making us smart in our decisions to be with someone. But of course, to be in a relationship is not only about "being in a relationship for the sake of being in a relationship", but it is about working as a "construction worker" (Guy, 2014) because individuals in a relationship are called (and obliged too?) to build, strengthen and sustain a committed relationship and not a "relation-shit".

It takes blood and tears to succeed in research - sleepless nights, writing, research, revising, and lots of revising. It is the same with finding your special someone. You may become desperate or vulnerable but at least "lessen" the risk of falling for the wrong person at a complicated timing. So before you embark on being with someone, be mindful with the process of "getting to know" your special someone and employing an array of "research" methods as mentioned above. Listen to your friends' advice too for they're your literature review (lol) and you will find "gaps" that you can explore or experiment. #InLoveEh!

Oh by the way, there is an "Introduction" part in research. That's where you say, I'm SINGLE and ready to MINGLE. Enjoy finding your special someone.

Yours truly,
(signed, sealed & delivered)
Earvs Cabalquinto, PhD (Feeling?)
Doctor of/in Love (Lol!)

* Longitutidal is a correlational research that involves repeated observations of the same variables over long periods of time.

4 comments:

  1. Nice...I remember my Thesis days.

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  2. Replies
    1. Yeah ganda ng blog... interesting. Thanks for sharing.
      Keep it up.

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    2. Thank you for reading and for your comment! =)

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