January 4, 2014

Clean-up

Well when there are over 75 posts, spread over 4-5 years and you look back at some of the stuff, you know a bit of it has to go. I'm both my best and worst critic. So who better to clean up the text and categorize it better and branch out a better.



And leave this blog open for the general ramblings so that whenever there's introspection, retrospection and any sort of inspection I have a ready place to look for it.

Well as Vineet was once asked
"is the chowkidar the only one person in Pilani not to have 4-5 blogs?" :D 

December 14, 2013

24

The last year has been entirely what I had imagined it would be,
  • me lashing out at things that shouldn't be tolerated, 
  • blasting a couple childhood friends who still seem to be stuck in the past, 
  • changing impressions and mindsets of people within the many gangs I've been part of  
  • trusting my instincts more and just going for it. 
  • And then emptying the baggage all through, letting people and feelings pass by..
So I had transitioned from the extremely inward looking, emotionally detached person to something more of an ambivert (the dual thing has got me big time) and becoming more and more dependent on the people closest to me. But I feel I've struck a balance now, maybe that's for a later post.

And the good things: 
  • Growth and contribution at work
  • Some timeless memories and moments of epiphany
  • Self-discovery, discovery of others and overcoming insecurities
  • Gaining maturity but not really feeling like 24; still feels like 22 although the number makes me feel grown-up! 
Well here's what I envision for the coming year: to RISE.

The idea is to squeeze in two days worth in a single day,
At the same time maintaining work life balance
More physical & mental exercise and to compete 
Achieving the untapped potential, or the visualized potential
And yes, exploring life outside office :D 
PS. This time I'm not in a hurry, want to relive every moment

Cheers,
14-12-2013

November 10, 2013

Retrospection and Nostalgia

Retrospection

I've always been a strong believer in retrospection as a teacher. The sort of retrospection where you just look back and start smiling at the many times you've told yourself, "I should just get through this one day". Maybe an exam in a subject you dreaded or making some presentation of stuff you've never understood fully. But why would anyone want to revisit the moments that scared them the most? Two polar possibilities:
  1. For some reason, you've had to continue doing the same stuff -- like a sportsperson -- but this time you've have kept it at; finally comprehending what you had missed to earlier. Most of my life I've always been in this category: of getting those late epiphanies and have also had company in a couple of friends who faced similar experiences. Or, 
  2. You've landed yourself in yet another similar situation and get that sad, depressed feeling with a sense of deja vu` trying to recollect when you felt that worse. I guess we all have our own vulnerabilities and often find ourselves in such a situation.
I say polar because, in the former situation you end up feeling good about yourself -- looking at the maturity, the learning, on facing your demons, etc. While in the latter, you feel sadder, lose more confidence and just start crumbling and giving up.

There were infinite times when I just ran to a secluded place to think and re-think and gain something out of the exercise.

Nostalgia

Another feeling that traverses a similar path in our mind is a longing for things gone by. A longing for the good times that were, a longing for school days, a longing for a loved one, and the list goes on.

  • And when is this triggered? Sights, sounds, and even smells! In fact, all the five senses.
  • How does nostalgia effect us?
    • Well, if there's not a huge change in your life -- you're living in the same city, with the same set of friends, with the same clothes -- then you'd feel happy and continue living it the same way. Not much to gain out of this. 
    • If there's a drastic change to how you've been living life, say for example, you've enrolled in the army leaving aside your profession. When you start living in the most horrifying conditions of war and realizing the fragility of life, etc. you feel happy and sad immersing yourself in nostalgia.
Differences?
The differences are immediately obvious:
  1. Nostalgia is more common, more talked about, more shared, more experienced. Whereas retrospection is something more personal -- something you can discuss only with people who know you, or know what you do, well. Retrospection is not something you just sit back, re-watch the moments go by, but you start doing something about it and in the process you learn and become better. 
  2. Nostalgic feelings come once in a while, when you meet an old friend, visit your old school or anything with an 'old' prefix.Whereas retrospection could be about something dating a year back or a decision taken in the morning or even a second before.
  3. Finally, nostalgia leaves us with both a sense of happiness and sadness, but retrospection affects us at one of the extremes. You feel the happiness of those times and yet feel sad that you are not there in that place anymore. 
Combining the two 
Since they go so closely, how about benefiting by using the two together? In no particular order as such.

Retrospection ending up in nostalgia is an important trap to avoid. We should retrospect without (always) succumbing to nostalgia, because the consequence is that every time you want to figure out what went wrong you'd get stuck like a tape at some point. And there's no real learning from it, you just have some happy-sad feelings.

But Nostalgia with Retrospection is more powerful. Not only do you recollect how things were, and soak in the emotion of it but also come out of it and start re-building yourself. And that is what the superhero thought I had once come up with was about: 
If these things can take you back in time, they can take you ahead as well.
 

September 23, 2013

How I feel

Its been almost a year when I first jotted some stuff for this post and left it at that. And I thought to myself
"A lot has taken place over the last one year. And I think there is no reason why I shouldn't be putting down what I learnt continuously and consistently over time."

Ironically, its actually been a year since I thought its been a year last time.
  1. Clarity: I have always had late realizations about some things in life but they strike so strongly that the journey, to epiphany, is my way of understanding life. But they clear so many doubts that you just start feeling a little wiser.


  2. Finding what you love- This is just so bloody important for living. Should never give up
    The soft version
    The confident version


    The hard version
  3. Get rid of some baggage: One of my close friends always kept telling me that I needn't try to be nice to everybody. Honestly, I was never trying to do that. I always sought to get myself in the right direction although I keep making mistakes. I tried to explain but the sort of impression childhood friends have about you, its difficult for them to get rid of it. But I don't see the reason to do that anymore if he/she really had to understand they would've understood long back.

  4. About relationships- I've often been told that when you tread that friendship-love boundary we tend to spoil the magic, that keeping it a guessing game is what girls like to do. But on the contrary, I met someone who didn't have such mental contortions and lived life the way I imagined it should be. We shouldn't restrict our thinking or tell ourselves that this is the limit. When you care for someone, we should let them know. And similarly, when you love someone we should let them know.

    Endorsed. 

  5. Numbing your senses- Again, self-control is not about denying your senses, its about not having the mind wander in the first place. Numbing senses or denying impulse can be detrimental in that they can rebel back too!
And this also was supposed to be post#75 on this blog. (I think it would be post#85 now :D) Need to publish out a few drafts and clean-up stuff. Now that I've cleared stuff with people who mattered, need to clean-up stuff and put forth stuff that matters. 

Cheers! :) 

September 14, 2013

Being yourself

"Be yourself" is perhaps one of the most obvious advise people would give or get. But is it really so easy to respond to every inner feeling and impulse you have and actually be yourself all the time?

To be able to fully realize ourselves and our abilities, takes time for one thing and for another it takes a lot of courage. We should not grow according to the societal settings and restrictions - we are not creepers. Rather, its important to find ourselves in the crowd and grow to our full potential just being ourselves all the way.
Like doing things which are both true and right is sometimes the most difficult thing to do; being yourself - which is both the truth and the right thing is also difficult.

Escaping the escapism of pretending to be someone else when faced with trouble and not wanting to confront a situation lest it lead to depression is one challenge.

The other thing is living with the knowledge that you have to face the situation one or the other day. Even denying your senses would cause the senses to rebel against you sooner or later.

Then there's a little peer pressure, of what the society would think; but hey its your life. Let someone else not decide what you are worth or what you should be doing. You do it serenely calmly and reach your full potential.
Of course it doesn't matter, but don't let them get away with the wrong idea. The wrong ideas spread faster. 

Just a retrospection than anything else :) that's totally me :D


September 7, 2013

WAR

WAR. I've been on a war mission the last six months of
  • trying to make people understand some problems, they found it odd why I stood up for others. 
  • unravel the mysteries behind their behavior, it was almost always about wanting to be right. 
  • telling them what's really happening, they assume what you see is what you get. 
But a war doesn't start of course start in one day, it takes a lot of time to get provoked to the ultimate step. And I guess I sort of ignited it myself a couple (or more) of years ago mainly by bottling up my feelings -- simply for the reason that there really wasn't anyone whom I could discuss the whole thing with.

WAR be it hot, cold or lukewarm tests you, throttles you and makes you doubt every single assumption and yes there's killing. It kills a lot of feelings but also blesses you with an immense deal of realizations:
  • Bottling up feelings 
    • Either they are too childish/silly to really still feel bad even though you try hard explaining about it e.g., "You didn't say thank you when I gave you the pencil during an exam."
    • Or people have long forgotten the issue and they are sometimes not even aware that such a thing has happened e.g., "I failed the exam because you gave me a blunt pencil, on purpose!"
  • Standing up for others
    • I for one am over sensitive to things that are close to me and expect that everyone is the same and that they would feel bad. Not everyone can do it, people are afraid of becoming the bad guy and why would you be afraid if you were good you would either expect people to understand their mistake or realize if you've made one.
  • Friendship needs caring
    • I never really believed this quote: "Friendship can weather most things and thrive in thin soil; but it needs a little mulch of letters and phone calls and small, silly presents every so often - just to save it from drying out completely" 
      But as time passed by, I realize its importance and why a frustrated friend is not always to be ignored. 
    • Some gospel to take away
      Those who don't understand you or who make you feel comfortable avoid them as far as possible, move on. Those who are close to you, you would always care for them and can derive happiness even just by talking to them. And those who understand you, don't hesitate, vent it all out -- because a sanity check and scheduled cleanup are always in order.
  • Last and the best, WAR itself reads: Without Any Reason
    • People from the outside, would view it that way or make some fancy assumptions as to what would have happened. 
    • People involved become so engrossed in winning over the other that they actually forget the true reason why situation started. In some cases it maybe genuinely long drawn but both the parties must be aware of it. 
Now I have people to discuss it with, share the burden along, empty the bottled up feelings vent out anger fear and frustration and then when I look back, What I see? Just an empty winding road like a cassette tape suddenly pulled out of the stereo.
(To be continued)

August 30, 2013

Everything we wanted to learn

I had come across this quote a few years back and it was one of the most inspiring things at that time. 

All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at school.These are the things I learned:
  • Share everything.
  • Play fair.
  • Don't hit people.
  • Put things back where you found them.
  • Clean up your own mess.
  • Don't take things that aren't yours.
  • Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
  • Wash your hands before you eat.
  • Flush.
  • Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
  • Live a balanced life - learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
  • Take a nap every afternoon.
  • When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
  • Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
  • Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
  • And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.
Although it was slightly against the basic philosophy of change and nowhere close to being as original as the Moral sciences we had in school, it captures life's lessons in retrospective. Its nice to carry around a list with all of the lessons you learn and modify them when you re-learn or unlearn. And always remember that we cannot roam around the world holding a static list, it has to be adaptive and perhaps shouldn't even be a list. 

And when you follow-up on all of the lessons you come up with, something as independent as this gets created.

Happy life lessons list making!

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