Why are you unhappy? – The reason is you and not you!

My friend called me during lunch to deliver the happy news of his promotion and a staggering 100% variable pay for his outstanding performance at work. Naturally, he was elated and couldn’t resist discussing the exotic vacation that he would plan, his dream car that he would buy and so on. I asked for a grand party and he readily agreed.

Few hours later, I receive a call again from him, canning the party, vacation and the car. “Wait, what? Why brother. What happened?” I asked. Apparently, one of his colleagues had received a promotion and a 150% variable pay. My friend could still plan that vacation and the car with the amount of pay he had received but suddenly the inclination to do that was gone. Just because somebody else had received something better, something more than him which was eating him away from inside.

This instance highlights what is happening with most of us. I was and still am a victim. Is this a new phenomenon? No, it used to happen with the older generations as well but has been highly aggravated because of we being the ‘Twitter for breakfast, Facebook for lunch and Instagram for dinner’ generation.

I am usually contented until I come across someone or something and start the futile, foolish and fuck all (yeah, I am really angry!) exercise of comparing myself.

If I travel to Bali, then there would be someone Taking a pill in Ibiza.

If I run a mile in 7.40 minutes, then there would be a 9 to 5- working-Usain Bolt with a 5.45.

If I have 1K followers on Instagram, there would be a friend having a 3K.

If I go out on 3 dates in a month, there would be someone spending a gala time with more dates than that. So you see, I can instigate my inferior complexity by almost anything silly. Sounds sick but it’s not only me, it’s you, you and yes, you as well.

Why are you unhappy? – The reason is you and not you!

Why I say the reason is you – because you are letting these irrelevant thoughts make you feel little in front of others.

And why not you – because it is not your inability to do a certain thing better than others which is responsible for this deep sense of unhappiness. My friend was extremely joyous with his appraisal numbers which meant he did work according to his expectation. He regrets knowing the numbers of his colleague. Now, what’s the outcome if we don’t discuss the solution to this nasty problem. I remember a very popular quote on human mind by John Milton “The mind is its own place and in itself, can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven.” And as they say, “It’s all in your mind”.  So the solution is to control our mind which isn’t easy.  This is a post that I had written on my Facebook wall when I had faced a similar instance turning my joys to sorrows which is quite relevant in this context –

Habit of comparison + Intention to bring about a positive change = Level of greatness

Look at the positive side of everyone. Look at what makes you appreciate someone and bring about that positive change. Or if that isn’t happening, as Tom Bilyeu says “Competing against others can be awesome in short bursts, but if you focus your attention outward for too long it will rob you of all of your joy, for there is always someone better. If, however, you compete against yourself, you can only win. Every time you beat your previous best you have just grown more powerful – all of your energies are on improvement instead of jealousy. And over the long run, that’s how you become great”.


Careless childhood or frantic youth? – My answer to the unanswerable

I see this post on my Instagram feed and immediately sends it to my brother. Being an over thinker, I am really made to think that those days were the best. No worries, no insecurities and everything taken care of by my parents.  My brother who looks at everything in life through a practical eye writes back “Yeah bro, I so miss those days. Remember, we used to go to school on bicycles and got chased by a dog who sat in the till the conclusion of the morning assembly. Lol. But the things are still good, just the pattern has changed. LYL because YOLO :P”. I goggled the ‘LYL’, the exercise which made me feel like a 50 years old uncle when I am at the peak of my Jawani. By the way, LYL stands for ‘Live Your Life’ in the mindfucking – constantly changing – urban dictionary – of the coolest kids ever.

It hit me hard. He had given an open ended yet precise answer to my forward drenched in the syrup of emotions and it somehow made sense. Within a fraction of seconds, I am on Instagram and start writing:

Love is a complicated subject. But this complicated subject finds solution in doing the smallest of things for each other.

No phase of the life is better that the other. How you make most of it determines which one will contribute largest to the dreams that you want to achieve. Its futile to get into a comparison and ruin the current. I have been an observer of many conversations in which people hold only one regret – “Vo bhi kya din the yaar. Life ke lag gaye he ab to”. Have I also done that? Yes, and I usually cover it saying, “This quarter life crisis, no”.

My past time before writing this blog was to crib about how I so miss my dear childhood. I would call up my brother or meet my friends and just talk about the past – that how reckless our school days were, that we needed not to fuck our minds with taxes, investments and relationships. Then on one call (possibly after tired of the same shit that bled his ears for a long time), my brother turned my mind towards the paucity of funds that we had to pursue our hobbies, the small fights my parents had, those dreaded exams which made me go to the loo thrice in the morning, when I couldn’t bowl a single ball properly, constant nagging by my classmates on being short, school mates laughing on my small bicycle, teachers scolding me for wearing dirty school uniform or loose socks and the list goes on.

Fast forward now – I have a 7-figure annual salary, can travel to the destinations I want, buy good clothes and live a life of a relatively good financial status in India.

So the universal truth that ‘Nothing comes perfect in life’ applies here too. Our childhood was fun but not bountiful and our youth has its own share of pros and cons. So, the mantra to live a life of no regrets is to channelize energy towards the good and live to the fullest rather than losing sleep over matters that may not last another dawn.

Do you remember the pain of playing cricket barefoot or cherish these memories of your childhood buddies? See, I said this – sorrows last for a brief period while you are enduring them but the memories of happiness get engraved for the lifetime. After all, LYL because YOLO!!

Truth and Talisman by Tejan – A treasure of Ponder over Pot ideas

Nothing in this world is black or white. Everything is grey. When I used to believe in Talisman, life hit me hard with reality. And when I was obsessed with being practical, wonders happened, reinstilling my faith in magic
   -  Tejan
Nothing in this world is black or white. Everything is grey. When I used to believe in Talisman, life hit me hard with reality. And when I was obsessed with being practical, wonders happened, reinstilling my faith in magic
– Tejan

I sometimes abruptly wake up at night to a dream in which it is dark I and am drowning in the sea. Also, today, I envy while at the same time look up to a person who is playing guitar and singing songs, leaving the audience spellbound. When I was in school, I had lot of time and energy to enroll in a swimming or a guitar class but considered it to be a waste of money and would fear that it would distract me from studies because all I knew then was that studies would lead me to a life full of happiness (happiness at that time was loads of money for me). When I was studying for Chartered Accountancy, I started reading Economic Times. Whenever I would come across any new appointments of any board member in a company, I was tempted to check whether he was a CA. Then I would imagine myself achieving the same feat without even thinking once what else is required to be professionally successful, apart from that coveted qualification.

Was it stupid on my part to think that way? No, because with the resources and guidance that I had, it was almost impossible to have a broadened thought process. Yes, because I never cared to find a mentor who could help me understand what it takes to lead a happy life – is it just money or a combination of various factors – a caring partner, loving parents, few besties who are always by your side, a burning desire to pursue your passion or bring about a change in the world. I have this rock solid feeling that there are people like me who reciprocate this feeling. But this doesn’t make us unhappy. We are learning, and this process of self-improvement might be delayed but has not stopped and we are enjoying every second of this journey.

So, I receive calls from parents of my juniors from school or college for career advice that I can offer. Frequently, my colleagues and friends discuss with me their career plans. Sometimes, close friends even share about what is going wrong in their relationships. Does it mean that this world has run out of decent education, career or relationship counselors (because for a matter of fact, I haven’t done anything extraordinary in my life except for affording a rented apartment in Andheri, taking a rick everyday to work and losing money in stock markets and still go partying every Friday, lol).  It is just that it is more comfortable and assuring to hear from a person who has practically and literally treaded the same path or who has seen things happening so close that mirrors his/her actual life circumstances.

And here I conclude that I would be more interested in listening to an advice from a person who has walked the same road, has dealt with life situations insanely like me; it is not necessary that he/she completed that journey and have achieved a legendary status; he can still be walking that path and doing it right. That is where I need my advice to come from because I seriously don’t give a single fuck to how BTS became the No 1 Boy Band in the world but if you tell me how did Jungkook learn those exceptional dancing skills or Jimin train to sing high notes or RM/ Suga write those heart melting lyrics, I am all ears!!

“I would tell myself these two words: ‘Don’t worry.’ I was petrified all the time — scared I couldn’t find a decent job, worried I’d never be able to save money, scared that I would always be living in my childhood room, unsure if I’d ever be able to buy a house, a car, or even the cool new thing that everyone was talking about. Sure, it’s okay to worry, Mr. 25-year-old self, but don’t let it take over your life — I promise you’ll regret it.” –Matthew Jussim

So now what? We must deal with those small everyday steps that someone in the coming generation would call a giant leap of faith. The beauty of those small steps is that you take those, you don’t see any value accretion instantly but after few years when you evaluate, you see how far you have come.

Let me come to the point – in this series of blogposts you will find everything and anything (ehhh!) – a book summary (not of the Fifty Shades of Grey kinds), narration of one of my daydreams, an advice on professional growth, a soul touching conversation with someone (just soul guys!) , a travel experience (I mean Goa here!), a jibe on human behavior or a thought in the solitary environment of my bathroom. The common thread that will bind these diverse experiences is that each will have some learning to offer. So GET SET GO for this exciting journey of fun and learning!!