I went for vaccination today. At first, I was nervous and feeling nauseous. Later on, I felt good. All the time I had to say, “whatever happens I am an adult I can handle this”. It seems quite funny the situation but then there was this sensation going on my left hand growing gradually to ultimate pain.
Life doesn’t stand still and various stuff was going on in every sphere of my life. It was all just one part of it. So, when I went to the center and I saw remains of someone who was massively nauseated. Yeah, I am talking about the vomit. Instead of this intimidating me, I was quite certain of myself as I was going on with, “whatever happens I am an adult I can handle this”. I felt that a simple affirmation can build in you such confidence and belief in yourself and is highly effective.
I learned today that with all the criticisms I have for myself for not doing this or that, I spoke few words of encouragement and it felt great. We expect someone to encourage us, but we can do the same for ourselves.
Let’s talk positively today with ourself and I want you to encourage or motivate yourself no matter in what situation you are. A simple affirmation would do.
I wonder what true happiness means. Is it love/career/family/passion or some kind of stimulation? I thought about it a lot and felt ultimately there is nothing enough to satisfy human mind. You can say you are happy (more likely without worry) but how truly happy you are?
A realization dawned on me, what if true happiness is not something individual? What if it is felt in a group? Try to remember the day where you felt great. I can assure you that somewhere at some place it was because of the people who stood next to you.
Now, think about the ultimate happiness quotient. If there are people starving, dealing with financial problems or worse mental problems, what we can do to help them? Can only helping solve the problem? It won’t.
You are a person. Take some people under you. Respect them, make them happy and sponsor them. If they are complicated, uncomplicate them. You must know when to stand firm and when to let go of people. When not to let them effect you in anyway.
Imagine if everyone of us takes some people under our guidance. Will it be a better world or will you be truly happy?
We often hear people say to have a broader perspective in life, be it an interview or a piece of general unsolicited advice. What confuses me more is how to have a broader perspective when you cannot predict the future.
Isn’t our whole life a trial and error method?
How many of us agree that we have all the time and resources to do the trial and error method ( and without depression, emotional or financial distress)?
Not many of us,
even millionaires have their own problems while making decisions because life does not give you a broader perspective, it is presented to you in chunks.
This chunk of time, what you are gonna do define you, and also this is all you have, not in past and not in the future. Then what is this drama and illusion of a broader perspective in life?
I thought about it and a few things came to my mind. Let’s bust some myths about it.
It may give you a clear idea of what you want in life, which is a whole another level of confusion as at this point of time you might be geared up for a particular thing, and then at another time, it would be another thing. By gearing up, I mean being motivated or inspired.
Successful people already have a broader clear perspective of their life. Now this is a myth, I will quote Steve Jobs here “you can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backward. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.”
All motivational gurus tell people to think ahead and believe to be present with their dreams. It sounds so magical, yet it is an illusion. This certainly is an illusion and life is not that simple that you can mold it up in any way you want and everything around you would be sorted. Life has different dimensions, it is just not limited to personality and career. No one knows what stands ahead of us, so it is better to give living a chance and whole figuring life out before the first step a thumbs down.
Another broader perspective entry-level interview question: Where do you want to see yourself after 5/10 years? I don’t understand when the education is not in accordance with the job profile, how would a candidate answer such a question. For example, a good actor may not know what entails and how the acting company works throughout but a star kid might know and even though they suck at acting there is a higher chance that they might ace the interview.
I love going through a broader perspective and imagining things perfectly. I think many people do it. What amazes me is that society has this prejudice towards the people who failed at the projection they showed to them. It puts so much pressure on them and the creative instincts stop working and the mind runs for the safe side, the path already taken by millions.
“The old path of success. “
So, before cursing yourself for failing to have a good broader perspective remember “you have to connect the dots looking backward, not forward”.
Perfection requires a lot of time, not just time but also energy to work consistently upon something. How can you be sure then that the work you are doing is worth seeking perfection? There are many ways people seek perfection, let’s dive into each perception and see if you belong to one or not.
The one who does not know what needs to be prioritized and hence give their best in every work they do. Although this sounds so meditative and mostly positive in reality it messes many things up. Our life is not that simple to handle each task perfectly. Without prioritizing, our brain would tend to seek the easiest one first and get tired doing the less important tasks. To be worn out doing nothing meaningful is the main disappointing “quality” of this kind of perfection. I belong to this one.
The one who has an idea of perfection and they seek it without considering the reality of the situation. Suppose, you are preparing for an exam and there is a whole lot of syllabus in front of you. Meticulously you go through the syllabus and not considering what are the important questions that could be asked in the exam. Even after completing the syllabus, a student may not know the necessary knowledge for the exam. The simple reason is our brain is not hardwired to remember a lot of information (Unless you cram like a parrot) and it is quite unhealthy to put a lot of things in there and at last, remembering nothing especially after you are done with the exam. What is the use of the knowledge gained during your session? No wonder, we feel crippled while applying the knowledge we learned.
People who take pride in being a perfectionist. It may happen in workspaces and while in the interview, the candidate says they are perfectionists. The candidates mostly meant they will make sure that whatever task they are given to perform they will do it to the best of their abilities and hence the result would surely be perfect. Thus, perfection becomes here an abstract term, because that surety is changeable depending on the responsibilities bestowed upon you, the nature of the work, or even perhaps the influence of the co-workers.
The list to make everything to be perfect would certainly be huge. I like it being in a place where I can enjoy working and will learn a lot. I envision something where people can make a meaningful relationship in workspaces and work together towards a creative goal. To invent and be part of something big yet effective. Effective in changing the lives of the people for good. The work would be gradually upgraded and the people go on to the next level while clearing the previous levels with dedication, hard work, and compliance by the rules, not just by corruption. The relation between the team leader and the employees is human, not degrading.
Is man really a civilized being? The horrors of their doing to another human being or even to a child is insurmountable. Never a day passes without the news of some women or a child being raped, molested and put on to horrifying deaths. I am afraid that it will be so regular, one day people will say it is just a daily affair. One cannot go out of the house without being anxious. The molesters or abusers, brings such deaths that they seem like getting some kind of grotesque pleasure from it. Let’s evaluate some reasons, why are they happening and what is the root cause of it. It is my personal opinion which I am enlisting here.
Since time immemorial, men used to go out and do work and women used to tend children and do household work. Naturally, more power of the outside world are in the hands of men. When women and children started going out to work or school respectively, things changed a lot. Now they are in the social world and very new to it. The people who came before them are mostly men and they have obviously more understanding of the outside world than them. There comes the negative side of their power, abuse of the power.
DISMISSING IT AS THE WAR OF THE SEXES
Very casually, harassment is shushed and put it to end. I don’t think there is a single women in India who has not been harrassed in their lives. (Men are like this) It includes the men who are innocent and actually more human. It leads to poor judement by women because of the worst lot. It is definitely more than the war of the sexes, it is violence not only physically but also emotionally and mentally. One has to live with it (if dead, burnt down ofcourse to rid the evidence). There is so many incidents like Nirbhaya case, which is yelling that it is defintely not the war of sexes, it is a psychological and social issue.
The existence of women can be seen in lawful papers now. Thanks to our predecessor humans who marked in it. Otherwise, there was no space for it and the women and children were one’s own personal affairs. Men are entitled to not only everything now but also their women and children. That entitlement we call marriage is still in practice. It is not love, it is entitlement that you belong to him now. It has become an important affair in order to live in this structured society. Law has changed (in India), after some horrifying incidents, still it is not much effective. We need better laws to uproot this problem and need some greater fear in the minds of people who think they can get away with anything. A country cannot be void of crime, but it isn’t necessary that it should be full of it.
Why bringing in more people to this country when living conditions of the existing ones are miserable? Can you give birth to a daughter and think that she will be safe here or think that she can be whatever she dreams of? No. So much population and such poverty that people are doing anything to survive. There is a whole lot of stress on them and then the fine line of sanity and insanity blurs. People being jobless, struck with malnutrition, living miserably is an everyday sight.
There are men being harrased and bullied. Not just a female child but a male child also has faced abuse. Not just the women but also third gender, who faces everything in silence. The more crimes are done on women and in grotesque state, so they are being focused here. Don’t think about protecting the women and children, think about making a world where they can walk freely and can feel that they belong here, just like you. Be human.
The basic definition of freedom is ‘we can do what we want to do’. This term is used in a very broad way. Many use it to show a sign that there is some kind of dependence they have or they are slave of some institute or government, in a negative way. A postive term used in a negative way, basically to show what you do not want in your life. What we do want in life is another complex question with multiple answers. It makes me think, is there a collective definition of it? An absolute freedom. When we see the term ‘absolutely free’, there are so many things that come into play, individually and socially and to attain it becomes impossible. I believe it is impossible to believe on the concept of ‘absolute freedom’. Let’s see the most believed things which make us feel bounded or confined in some way.
Are we absolutely free, when we have a family to be with? Family has their own expectations for you and their desires. It has their own effect on you and you feel bounded to obey them in order to not feel alone. To atleast feel that there is a group of people who are willing to be there if there is some kind of problem in our life. It is a certain thing and we love it. So we reciprocate accordingly and hence there is less freedom when we are influenced by someone. The people who has an influence on you since your childhood, will have more affect on you than the people who you just met. Freedom is a choice people say, so we have to leave family for it?
You are expected to be obedient in every way, still you must know how to form your own opinion. Now, that’s a tough call. If you are way too obedient to soemone, then your opinion will be mostly found in the trash can. If they ever took your opinion, then you cannot rely on them that they will credit you for it. Here, one is total slave, you don’t hit a kid but you slave a kid and try to fit a child in fixed environment. The other thing about school is, there is very less practical benefit of whatever is taught there (Indian schools specially). You are out of the school, all your dreams and desires crushed. Now what? Where to go? After so much subjugation from school, family and other external factors, will you still form an opinion and do something of your own? (perhaps, go to the university and take a course with no practical output)
We can find a whole bunch of people here, who has different views towards your life. They might not know anything about you, most of the people don’t want to know your struggles or desires, just wanted you to validate their opinions. (yes, you are right my friend. I will follow your advice.) That friend or a person will feel a sense of importance, for a short time there, it will be worth having it. Nobody wants to be a pushover, but everyone gets influenced someway by the words of others.
Dangling money to your mouth? Come here now and do this. With money all our freedom goes away, we are not a human anymore, we are a person of importance. There comes the jealous factor, he/she has more than me and the better livelihood factor (We need this). Expecting you to be working 8 hours everyday is a norm and one has to do it in order to survive. Really? We need a job in order to survive or to earn as much as we can fullfill our desires and live comfortably. There is a huge difference, we are sold something and it happens to be something else. We believe we are good and there is nothing to be ashamed of slaving and fulfil our desires, makes us selfish and just self sufficient. We want more and more, which don’t fulfil us more. Almost no social value to it.
These things we cannot escape. In today’s times, it is also social media. We are influenced by thousands of things in a day. (Now form your own opion and work towards it, it is indeed tough.) Another thing to be absolutely free is to live like a hermit, which is also out of the question, as you are bounded by strict rules.
While we live normal lives and going through daily struggle, we are okay. Aren’t we? We don’t want to be wild and do random things which might threaten our fellow humans. We all agreed on government,school, jobs together. We are somehow okay with this boundations. Therefore, we can conclude by saying that we are okay being less free. There is no absolute freedom.
When you come to think of being happy, one finds that being happy is a state of mind. Just as sadness, it occupies your mind wholly. Sometimes we are happy in absurd situation and think ourselves to be wicked and other times we feel sad in a happy situation, thus feels depressed. Being human, is indeed a difficult task. When I think of the source of happiness, I come across a few set of things which are sought after by most of the public to attain happiness. Let us go through it one by one (keeping in mind I am in my late twenties, yet to have kids) and see if you can add something to it;
When we usually talk to people about happiness, first thing that comes in mind is nature. One sees the beauty of something which is untouched by humans and one feels awe towards it. Nature gives us fresh air (I am talking lots of oxygen for our brain), a sight to see and a hope to live. We love what we see and then come back to our beloved city with pollution and population. It is irony here, you want happiness and then you stay away from it. It is just like a drug, you are away from it for a while and when you get the dose of it (BOOM!). It’s amazing. It is true that for city people to live in nature is tough. It is boring, there is no materialism, no desire, nothing…just plain simple life to live. Being human, with a curious mind, I wonder how one with an active mind is going to survive there. An active mind, usually doesn’t settle up with mundane lifestyle. It needs assuarance, confidence boost and rewards to feel better. There comes our next source of happiness.
2. SENSE OF ACHIEVEMENT
Where can I start? It occupies most of our lives. Am I a good daughter/wife/mother? Yes, you are. Thank you, now I feel better. Another episode: I have completed a task which consumed most of my time and attained nothing meaningful from it, on a personal level. Everyone: You have done a great job, thank you for it. (Gives you a meagre party and boost up your ego). Now you are in cloud nine and it is the feeling you can have with trading your time of life. It is one of the best feelings to have, some kind of achievement makes life more interesting.
You found happiness in it? I am certainly amazed. In my own opinion, it is not the meditation which made you happy, it is the nonsense which you face on daily basis and you didn’t face it as you were meditating. When one focuses on a singular task (which is quite difficult for our generation, thanks to technology), it involves you such that it creates more truth about that task and hence more clarity. Our brain loves clarity, as most of the things in life is not clear. When our brain gets a simple clarity even for few things, it feels happy. This sense of false clarity, we get from mediation. Better focus yourself on quantum physics for more answers on the universe, rather than focusing on nothing. I am not against meditation as a practice, I would rather say meditate on better things.
4. SLAVING YOUR SENSES
Food, sex, pleasurable activities, relaxing, going on a vacay, spa etc etc. The list is endless… for short term happiness ofcourse. You spend time in this and then you feel great and now you are ready to face life for a while. Then again one wants to rejuvenate oneself thus indulging on pleasure and the cycle goes on. People are getting smarter, intervening these activities and using social media to earn livelihood. I wonder if it has the same effect, when you do it too much.
I dare to say exercise here! Some kind of sports or something which boost up the endorphins, relaxes the mind. It actually takes a whole lot of convincing to exercise in the first place (city dwellers) and when you complete it, there is obviously hormones acting up or stuff but also a sense of achievement that your body is better than before. And then, we are back to desk on our laptop or with our gadgets and stuff. Thank Lord! We exercised today.
People say, they get assurance from above that someone is watching on them. When they are in trouble, He acts up. This assurance is enough for many people to put off their anxiety aside and feel they are a part of group (again sense of achievement). Therefore, they are happy. We drift apart with each other while becoming a complete individual. We want people and yet we don’t want them around us. We get older and we find ourselves alone, now we want some kind of assurance that everything is going to be good. That assurance is God.
I can go on detail and list up many things. It is just a overview of things. This post is not a how-to post. It is just a critical view towards a state of mind, which sells commercially and which influences most of the incidents in our life. It is so vague and yet people hold on to it, maybe it is much clearer for our brain to handle those hundreds of feelings we feel in a day by categorizing into a term called “happiness” (way simpler version: when things are going according to you).