Around a year back I bought a Fitbit for my wife which unfortunately was not as appealing to her as it was to me. It got left behind in the cupboard more often than I would like to. So, one fine day, I decided to use it for myself. I had been contemplating on going out for daily walks for quite sometime, but hadn’t started it yet. Using the Fitbit as motivation, I decided to get my lazy ass off the bed everyday morning. But, walks to me were a way of connecting to nature than mere physical exercise. So, my eyes fell on the ‘police line’, rife with greenery, right beside my apartment.
It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.
I don’t believe in new year resolutions. But, I do believe in reflecting. I opened my diary, to see how the year went by. 2016 was a challenging year. If I could use two words to describe this year they would be – stress & anxiety. There was a lot I wished didn’t happen. But, I’ve learnt a lot too. We already ‘know’ a lot on how to deal with life. But, we don’t understand them until we are actually ready. And, nothing readies us like a few knocks (or blows) to the head. Lessons that I take with me into the new year:
What do you do when you are afraid all the time? When you feel the world out there is waiting to get you? When you feel, people are rooting for your failure? When you have to cope up with failed dreams, dreams that laugh at your face, taunting you? When the person in you is constantly berating you? What do you do when all you can do is stand by and watch your confidence plummet and anxiety & stress increase? What do you do when you have to handle all this internally and yet show up to work with a smile on your face, ’cause you have continue to make a living? when you have to laugh with your family in order not to worry them?
If you want security, you’d have to forgo passion.
If you want passion, you’d have to forgo security.
If you want to tuck your child-in at night, read stories to them while sleeping, you’d have to let go working late nights at work.
If you want career development which entails working a lot, you’d have to forgo personal time.
If you want to buy the latest gadget, you’ll have nothing in your savings.
If you want savings, you won’t have the latest gadget.
If you are ambitious, always looking at the next mountain to scale, you’ll never be content.
If you are content, you’ll never look at the next mountain to climb.
Life is all about trade offs. You cannot have it all and no matter what we choose there’ll be regrets. And, the path we choose determines how our life ultimately turns out to be.
What is a book? Is it the printed matter found on the pages? Is it a collection of sheets bound by a cover? Is it an idea frozen in time? Or is it, an idea with a personality of its own?
Probably the format & idea of books hasn’t changed much since the mass popularity and proliferation of printing press after Gutenberg, till the advent of eBooks. Digitization is affecting the book industry as much as it has affected all the other things it touched. Like music, we are now left wondering, if it is the song/book that matters (aka a file) or is the experience of walking to a music/book store, browsing through the cover art, holding the record/book in hand, probably listening to a song or two/reading a page or two, that give music/books a personality that have endeared them to us. Or am I just a hopeless romantic hanging on to an outdated idea?
Last week I went to Varanasi and Gaya on a pilgrimage. Few thoughts from the trip.
Of the 10 people in the compartment, all of them are into their cell phones. No one looking out of the window or reading a magazine. No wonder I did not see a book cart on the platform.
One passenger started a philosophical discourse not bothered if he has an audience or not. Some people start talking assuming other people want to listen. They never think otherwise. Thank god for earphones.
Another, thought, if he can survive in this world, can’t I find a corner?