Friday, November 13, 2009

Finding my Passion.

It's been a long time since I've written on this blog. Life was heavily blurred and topsy turvy for the past 1 year. There have been so many incidents, where I've had real life experiences, about things, which we usually only read in books or watch on TV soaps. The one big experience which gave a new turn to my life was my divorce. I was struggling to live since past 7 years. Finally, we broke the bond. It was very depressing at the same time very exciting. I could feel a
sense of freedom from unwanted responsibilities, freedom from forced living, freedom to think about my future afresh. I will always miss her though. We have had some amazing moments together.

In the past 6 months, I started my own brand, had to close it down, was financially broke and still managed to remain positive and move on. I realized that when I was doing well, I never thought of changing the very basics, because, everything was fine. But, when I was thrown into situations where survival was difficult, I actually had to sit and re-think about the very basics of what I'm made of, what I have been doing, what my future can hold for me. I had to adapt to changing circumstances. There were so many things, I didn't enjoy doing. I was being dragged into situational opportunities, which were not what I wanted to grab. But, it was a question of survival and I had to go with the flow. Those were the best decisions I had to take in those circumstances. But, as I walked this path of adaptation, I started to realize that I am not enjoying my life. I felt like a slave of bankruptcy. I was frustrated over time. The biggest realization was that I am not doing something which I love doing.

Since, then, I started thinking about the things which I would love to do. It took me a long time to come to conclusions about what I truly love doing. I actually made a list. Then, I started trying one thing at a time. What I've learnt is that planning and execution are two shores of a river. There would be lot of people who plan, make plans for others, but don't do much about their plans. And there are a small set of people who execute right from the day they get an idea which they love.

Experimentation comes at a cost. I didn't have much choice due to lack of resources. But, I was ready to experiment in spite of the limitations. As I jumped into my planned processes, I came across so many hurdles, to the extent that I started to realize that this is not my passion. So, I moved on to the next idea. And next. Then, finally I decided to re-visit my list of passions.

I still have a list. I love doing lot of things. A few of them can earn me money. As the saying goes "Choose a job you love and you will never have to work a day in your life" - Confucius. I want to do something extra-ordinary, something which would be scalable, something
which I can keep doing with unchanged intensity, something which excites me. I am 31 years old. I have a well set business. But, I am going to chase my passions and do what best excites me. I am not going to give up.

Whatever I do, I will do it with passion. What's your passion? Are you doing what you love to do? If yes, Congratulations. If no, then, its time to visit your passions list!

Forgot to mention - writing is one of my passions.. :)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Getting out of the addiction

I've suffered enough due to cigarette smoking. Asthma, COPD, Breathing
ailments, Stomach cramps, to name a few immediate causes of smoking.
I'd quit smoking in Jan 2007. I used the help of an ebook which was
available free on the internet. It was called Break the chains - Quit
Smoking.

My wife and I decided to part ways in Dec 2008. I was also burdened by
a financial crisis due to recession at the same time. On one stressful
evening, I was with a friend who was smoking. I thought of taking one
puff! And that was the beginning of my re-addiction. I had read in the
ebook that never ever in my life - should I pick up a cigarette. And
here I was, knowing all the facts, all the consequences - still having
a smoke. I continued smoking. One puff became 1 cigarette, then 2,
then 3, then a packet. I didn't even realize how the nicotine
addiction pulled me in.

It's been close to 7 months today. I am unable to quit smoking. I am
trying very hard, but it requires a tremendous will power. I have
almost quit. Almost, because, I am waiting for at-least 15 days to
pass by without a smoke. Only then can I call myself a non smoker.

When I don't get a cigarette, my cravings double up. My mouth becomes
dry, I feel like sipping something all the time. My entire focus is
fixed on how to get another cigarette. There's a huge split in the
mind. One part of the mind says that I badly need a cigarette, the
other part says "Don't have it!" My jaws start moving up and down, my
veins get stretched out, I feel a sense of hunger, anger, frustration.
I don't feel like talking to people. I feel like going off to sleep.
My entire body's concentration focusses on having a cigarette. I fight
with my own self, giving funny reasons and excuses about why I should
smoke just 1 cigarette.

I see it as an impossible method for anyone to quit smoking easily in
this way. It's extremely difficult. But, i want to quit. And I will. I
am just waiting for the 15 smoke free days to pass by, when i will be
a totally smoke free person.

Never ever take a cigarette in your hand again. If you get addicted,
its too difficult to quit again..!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Boredom and Anger.

I had never imagined that I could get so bored in life. I keep up with
my daily schedule of Waking up, Bathing, Going to Office, Working,
Having Tea, Driving, Coming back home, Reading, Sleeping. But, never
had I thought that I would get so much bored of doing the same things,
so much that I start getting frustrated and surround myself with all
negative thoughts.

Nothing impresses me. Music, Movies, Outings, nothing at all. I want
to do something more exciting each time. Something which I've not done
earlier.

Boredom is a serious threat in the life of a city dweller. I've seen
many people getting bored in their jobs, getting bored of driving,
getting bored of their spouses and there's nothing in the world that
can escape this giant emotion of boredom.

Considering my own activities, I am passing though so many mood
fluctuations. I am unable to give my 100% to my performance. I am all
the time busy figuring out how to save money, spend money, fighting
within myself to do or not to do certain things. Conflicts are
building up each day between what I want to do and what I am able to
do and what I actually do. I am really bored even to write this blog.
Can you believe it?

I always believe that writing about my emotions helps me to deal with
them. So, here I am, writing whatever comes up. I really like this
blogging thing. One can keep writing whatever he wants irrespective of
understanding whether someone would read it, like it or get bored of it.

We are living in an era of information. There's so much information,
that most of it may be irrelevant for most people. And still I keep
gathering it with both hands and eyes. My brain is over flooded with
Information. When I am on the road, driving my car, I see tons and
tons of information. On the billboards, on the back of other cars, on
taxis, on Auto Rickshaws* (*Economical Indian mode of transport,
something like a cab with 3 wheels), on all sides of buses, on
people's t-shirts, on lamp poles full of banners, on walls of
buildings full of posters, there's just so much information which I
have to glance at, even if I don't want to. All this causes a headache
sometimes. And it also causes more boredom, more revolt, more
suppression of anger. Anger for having to experience things which I
don't want to experience. Having to roll down my car windows to tell
the salesman that I don't need the sun flaps or that car mobile
charger, to tell the beggar that I don't have change to give him,
anger towards pedestrians scratching my car paint and walking past me,
anger towards drivers breaking traffic laws, and anger towards the
policemen who just sit and watch all this.

This post has turned out to be a very destructive one so far. First of
its kind on my blog.

But let me release it out once and for all. Do you know that I live in
a city where the State Electricity department turns off the power from
the whole city whenever they feel like and for how much ever time they
feel like? Yes. I live in Pune. The Oxford of the East. The Cultural
Capital of Maharashtra.

I was asking my girl friend the other day, how about shifting to
Dubai? She told me that India is full of opportunities. Dubai is not
so. Any other part of the world will have their own cons. But, I want
to know from people, how can I possibly be honest, value based,
peaceful and spiritual, when everything around me is imbibing me with
the concept of Bribery, Misuse of Power, Offense of law, Conveniences
of a lucky few - the selfish few, Hatred, Inhumanity, Poverty, Abuse,
Injustice, and what not. How can I live peacefully when I have to face
this world every day? Every Fucking Day. We are taught to live with
this. Taught to suppress the feelings, the emotions. We are taught to
behave like slaves and never to rise our heads up. We are taught to
live in fear. A fear of miscreants(Bhai-log), fear of poverty, fear of
competition, fear to reach our goals, fear of failures, fear of the
politicians, fear of the landlords, fear of the society, fear to lose
our spouses, fear to lose our children, fear of doing business, fear
of dreaming big, fear of the municipality, fear of unavailability of
drinking water, fear of pollution, fear of calamities, fear of
destruction. The list can go on and on. If I have to live, I have to
face these fears. I have to overcome them. Like the Mountain Dew ad
slogan "Darr ke aage jeet hai". (there's victory beyond any fear). And
that's what I have been doing all my life. Fighting. Fighting with my
fears, fighting to fulfill my ambitions. Fighting to get to the top.
Now I am bored of it.

The same problems. The same dirty solutions. The same government. The
same insane policies. I am sick of all this. I feel like taking a
vacation somewhere. But, that would be for a short while. Wherever I
go, I can't escape the reality of life. The bitter truth, that I have
to face all this one day or the other.

So, here I am, deciding to take a Sword in my hand to take charge of
the situations, to fight back, to emerge as a winner in this battle
between my emotions and the reality. I've learnt to adapt. But
adapting is not enough. I need to make a change. People need to get
together and make a difference. We deserve a Human Life. Enough of
Inhumanity. All these cooked up emotions need to be released
somewhere. They need to be channelised properly. I am searching. The
day I get an opportunity, I won't leave it. I will make a difference.
I will make my life livable. And whenever I will lose. I will read
this blog to get my energy levels back...!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Against My Will

I happened to pass through a phase in life, where, I had to do certain
things which were necessary at that time. I didn't have any option,
but to take the necessary mode of action. Given a choice, I would have
never done it. This entire incident made me think deeper about the
choices I've made in my life. I've learnt that making a choice is in
my control and the consequences which arise from those choices are
never in my control. I have to face the consequences, no matter they
are good, bad or opposite of what I wanted.

But, I was in a state of being, where I had no control over my choices
too. Because, there were no choices. I had to do what I did. And when
I realized that certain things were not what I wanted to do, I had to
struggle doing them. Suddenly this realization struck to me about how
our freedom fighters have struggled for freedom. How they got so much
strength, so much dedication and will power, to go through so much
pain. That's because they were the people who stood up and made a
choice. They did not compromise on their choice. They chose freedom
against slavery. They were not ready to do things against their will.
Freedom is such an important factor. I realized what must be the
feelings of people who are imprisoned for life, who are not allowed to
do what they want to do. I've realized that taking away Freedom from a
person is the most dreadful punishment that a man can face. It is more
horrifying than death penalty. To live life without freedom is more
difficult than death.

It is so important in life, to do the things that I want to do. I've
realized that, its really a struggle to do something when it is
against my will. It may be anything. But, when I didn't have a choice,
I had to adapt.

Adapting to demanding situations helped me to come out of the plethora
of forced choices. I realized that once I adapted to something, it no
longer looked like struggle. But, it is not always possible to adapt.
Sometimes, it becomes extremely necessary for me to stand up for my
right to freedom and choice. And, that requires tremendous guts and
bravery.

Thinking of it, I feel blessed to have the freedom of choice for most
things in life and the freedom to live without force. Because of this
incident, I've realized the value of freedom. I consider this phase of
life as a lesson learnt. Very important lesson, which has made me
understand the importance of freedom and adaptability.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Love can move mountains.

Being loved by someone is one of the greatest fulfillments in life. And to have found true love is a divine feeling. I can't much recall the night when it happened, how it happened. But she does. Oh! I was just getting carried away, wherever life took me. There was no stopping of emotions. I wanted to resist, but I've realized that logic didn't work when I was in love. Everything looked magical. There was fragrance in the air. I could completely understand all the love stories, which I didn't believe till that day. Every love song seemed more meaningful than ever. It was that night in November, when I fell in love.

I wanted to impress her, make her understand how much I love her. My entire mind and body co-operated with each other to make her realize how much I love her. She gave in. She too felt the same. I could feel the oneness which we shared. Everything was understood without speaking a word. We were in love. And suddenly I realized that I had got super powers to make her mine.

The days and nights started becoming shorter and shorter. We both didn't realize and it was time for her to go away.

Here I am, waiting for her to come back from where she is gone. Each day looks like a month. Each moment, I am missing her. I am in love and its the most amazing feeling I've ever known. I am dying to hear her voice. I've lost control on tears. I can do anything to get her back soon. I am missing her like crazy. I've become a poet, a writer. I myself can't believe the things which I am doing.

If love can move mountains, then I want to move one. I want to get her back right now.

Love - looks like the most powerful force. Love - looks like the most divine experience.

Surviving or Living?

It was a cold Monday morning. I boarded the train to Mumbai from Pune. I had an evening flight to catch for Dubai. Because of the sudden decision to leave, I couldn't book AC Chair Car tickets for the train. I had to travel by Second Class. Its a rare ocassion when I get to travel like that. And I just loved it. I believe that if you want to experience real India, you should travel by 2nd class. I was so excited to be in the D4 compartment of the Pune Mumbai Pragati Express. There were all types of people in the compartment. Some were soberly dressed, some were sleeping, some shouting, some eating, some with their families, some alone, some smoking and breaking the law, some happy, some sad. The entire compartment was filled with mixed emotions. After a while, I stood up and went towards the door. I was standing by the side of the door, looking outside. Our train was passing through the small and big towns enroute Mumbai.
 
My attention was suddenly diverted on a small basti (locality) which was visible from the now slow train. There were children playing in gutters, women washing clothes, a bald man in banyan and lunghi was resting outside his shop, reading a newspaper, with legs folded. His wife came towards him, asked him something, they smiled and then she was gone.
 
I just asked myself, will this person ever dream of traveling? Even if he does, will he ever be able to travel out of country? His work probably involves selling small grocery items, to the people of that locality. He might be earning around Rs.100 per month. His wife might be working as a maid in some house. He might have children, who are studying in school. The question which disturbed me completely is whether people like these are living or merely surviving?
 
In spite of all the poverty, they are still able to smile and pass the day happily. And some of us, who are more gifted, crib about smalles of things and remain miserable. The person here, may not even be able to travel. And I was wondering whether I would be comfortable in a 2nd class compartment.
 
I really feel very blessed today, for all that I have got and I've decided that I will never feel miserable like this. I will always remember this lesson which I've learnt in the small basti enroute Mumbai. I will always count my blessings.

Back to School

I had visited a school today for our subject + program. We are a team
of people who are part of this huge program, where we are going to
schools and conducting a few sessions on values of life for 'X' std
students.

I had gone as a partner with another speaker who took the session. For
those of you who are like me, who haven't been to a school since long
time, I would like to tell you - you should visit a school once. It's
an amazing experience.

At 7.30 am as we entered the school, I saw hundreds of students
emerging from the buses and walking in a queue toward their classes.
There was the school band, which started playing the marching drums,
and suddenly everything which was still appeared moving. The music
became faster and louder. And within 5 minutes, all students were
settled in their respective classes. The sound of the drum beats
tantalized my senses. I felt super charged up. All my laziness
disappeared. As we moved to see how many of them are playing the
drums, the loudspeaker turned on and there was a prayer, and then a
few sanskrit slokas, and then every student in the school, recited the
pledge "India is my country, all Indians are my brothers & sisters……"
and then the National Anthem. The whole atmosphere was filled with
tremendous patriotism. Everything seemed so full of life. I remembered
the good old days back at school. How uncomplicated life was then.

We went on to take the session. It was an interactive session, where
we asked the students lot of questions about what they dream to become
and how to make their dreams into reality… etc.

I was so amazed listening to their answers. Some silly, some so
intelligent, some funny, some so serious.. With each answer, I could
understand, what the child is going through and what he/she wants to
achieve in life. We taught them to improve their Self-Belief, and to
dream big. We made them take the courage to stand and share what they
felt. And everybody clapped for the child who shared.

When we finally summarized the entire session, each one of the
students shared with us what they learnt from the session. And I had
never visualized any of the answers which they gave. What I've learnt
from this experience is that "A child's mind is so pure and free from
prejudices and negativities. If good thoughts, practices and lessons
of life are taught to them throughout their childhood, they can become
Great people in future.