Sometimes the best thing you can do for ‘someone dear’ is to simply… wait.
He is one of my closest friends, and there is a development in his life that he has not shared with even his closest people. It’s not that he doesn’t want to share. He has been looking for reasons to meet me or talk to me. And often he mentions it and then he stops awkwardly or fidgets or stammers or simply changes the topic.
The interesting part is that I already know what he wants to share. So when one of my loved ones asked me “Why don’t you directly ask him about it or tell him that you already know”? I said “No, I will wait”.
So why am I waiting? The reason is a deeper one. Well! Even in our closest relationships, we protect our self-image – our perception in our own eyes vis-à-vis the other. That’s why when we want to expose our vulnerabilities, we want to do it in a way that still keeps our dignity intact. Even when we are full with emotions to the brim, we still look for the right coordinates of ‘time and place’ to share.
So I am letting him decide those coordinates, so that eventually when we will have that conversation, he won’t regret.
After all, real relationships are the ones in which we feel good even after telling something ‘not so good’ about us. Isn’t it? 🙂
Some people have a knack for finding reasons to be sad; and that too…consistently.
By virtue of the nature of my work, many people trust me with their problems and trust me for a solution. I respect that trust immensely and do my absolute best to see a problem from that person’s perspective – because only then can you visualize the perceived magnitude and feel the resultant suffering. Yes! At times, life can be really cruel and world can be a very lonely place.
However, every now and then, there are some people who simply amaze me with their ability to generate problems for themselves. And I am not talking about people going through PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) or needing psychoanalytic sittings or psychiatric interventions.
I am talking about people who are fit & fine by most standards, and still are hell bent on being in a problem. And you would be amazed to understand the underlying motives to do so! They do so for two major reasons: it feeds their egos by helping them feel a pseudo sense of self-importance and it relieves them of going through the grill of ‘sweating it out’ out there in the world.
Yup! They devise problems to…buy convenience.
Well! Why blame them? The truth is that all of us are prone to do so.
‘Letting someone reverse a car without continuously honking from behind’ also qualifies as a pious act. 🙂
For us in India, roads are an extension of our houses and our personal possessions – kids play all sort of games, teenagers walk with absolute carefreeness, young ones park their bikes in the middle and talk endlessly, and old people keep shifting their chairs right down & across following that patch of sunlight.
Our roads host everything – marriage processions, housewarming ceremonies, birthday parties, national celebrations, religious festivals, public protests, and everything under the sun. Yet alas! We can do everything on roads, except waiting for some extra seconds to accommodate someone.
Let’s someday take a road less traveled. 🙂
Biggest curse for modern human is not the desire to multitask but the ability to multitask.
As I often discuss in my sessions on social & emotional intelligence, multitasking is about sacrificing depth for width. Yes! You shouldn’t do something just because you can do it. In fact, often a greater willpower is required not in ‘doing something you can’t do’ but in ‘not doing something that you can do’. As I often tell people…“professionalism is ability to postpone pleasure”.
Anyways, so this is how the battle inside capable persons typically goes: “There are so many things that they want to do. And all of them look important. When they begin to do one thing, the thought of ‘doing the next thing’ or ‘not doing the other thing’ keeps intervening. They feel as if something is slipping out of their hands – time or opportunity. And that makes them even more restless”.
Well! Problem is not that you want everything. Problem is that you want everything together and now.
The only way to learn a new thing is to keep doing it until it becomes old. 🙂
So, why do most people fail to develop new habits?
Well! Beginning to develop a habit is thrilling! After all, you are doing something new; so you feel excitement, hope and optimism. You feel a sense of control on your destiny. You feel important. You feel liberated. You feel creative. You feel powerful. You feel… good.
But then after sometime, the newness goes away. Now, there is hardly any excitement. It’s monotony. It’s drudgery. It’s ritual. It’s repetitive. It’s routinized. And though it is still challenging, the problem is that challenge is not fresh – it’s stale. You feel…not so good.
Yes! People fail to develop new habits, not because it is tough to do so, but because it is boring to do so.
Embrace boredom, embrace change.
‘Move on’ in life, but move on as a wiser person.
There will always be people who will hurt you – sometimes unintentionally and at other times ‘intentionally’. When they do, it is natural for you to take it to heart for a while. But as time passes, you have a choice of either ‘keeping it in heart’ or ‘letting go’.
But I think there is a third alternative. You can forgive the person and not forget the learnings. Yes! You should store the factual portion of the feeling and let the feeling gradually recede. Easier said than done, but surely worth a try!
After all, it is not the person but the act that hurt you. And don’t forget that other people in your life are also perfectly capable of repeating that act. So, update the database and let it work at the backend. Ok Ok! Before you object, I should admit that yes it is difficult to analyze your own hurt by being objective.
But then…we have to learn to do so, to achieve a higher…objective.
To get ‘what’ you want, you have to first know what it is.
The reason why most people get disillusioned in the pursuit of success is because they have not really defined it. It remains a sketchy notion in their minds that keeps changing all the time. I do respect that definition is supposed to change at various stages of life or after a life-changing event; and it is also equally important to keep raising the benchmarks.
However, the definition cannot be short-term or short-lived. And it also cannot be based on a ‘socially constructed’ idea of what it is. It has to emerge from within you, and should be a manifestation of your values, talents and intrinsic desires. Call it ‘vision’, ‘mission’ or some other good-sounding word, the only criterion is that it should truly represent ‘you’.
After all…‘what you want’ should come from ‘who you are’. 🙂
It is important to travel, as it helps you dismantle the notion that ‘your world is just some relationships… a pursuit called work… and a concept called home’.
When you travel, you recognize the vastness of the world we live in…the variety of situations life can conceive…the vividness of experiences on offer…and the value of human-connect beyond one’s concentric orbits. It challenges you and introduces you to yourself in a way nothing else can. It makes you unlearn and relearn. And it helps you review your perspective and restore your sanity.
But most importantly, it also helps you miss what you are away from.
Yes! It is important to travel, as it helps you realize the truth that ‘your world is just some relationships… a pursuit called work… and a concept called home’. 🙂
People still have a heart! It’s just that now they use it selectively.
I have known this road side vendor for long. He has profile of a typical 20 something man from that humble background – dropped out of school at some point of time…got into wrong company…went through a tough patch…began working to earn livelihood…settled for something that worked.
He is man of few words, and rude to the point of being aggressive. I have often seen him fighting with the people near whose building he places his cart, or arguing with people who park vehicle in front of his cart; but have never seen him emotional or vulnerable.
Today, I saw a boy assisting him. When I enquired, he told me that the boy was deaf & dumb who didn’t have any active support. And then he said “Sir, do time khana khila doonga aur itne paise de doonga ki bigde nahin. Kisi ko to sochna padega naa!”
The difference is clear – earlier people used to use their heart when they were meant to. Now they use it when they want to or when…you deserve it.
What men should learn to understand is that when a woman smiles at them, then often it only means ‘you are interesting’ and not ‘she is interested’! 🙂
A characteristic problem with most (not all) men is that they try to read a tad too much. At times, a gesture conveying ‘I like you’ can only mean ‘I like you’ and doesn’t necessarily translate into ‘there is a spark.” or ‘would like to see you again!’ or ‘stay in touch!’ or ‘be around.’ or ‘there is more to it…’ or ‘you never know’!
And even ‘I like you’ doesn’t mean ‘I will like you forever’. It only means ‘I like you’ right now…for time being…for a specific reason…in a particular context…in the mood I am in…till I change my mind. But the issue is that such complex womanly feelings are too complicated for binary-thinking men.
And they are only too happily eager to spot an illusory thing they are searching for – a cue…a clue…a hint. What they don’t understand is that at times, it is good to simply smile back at a smile, and move on.
I know that by now, you must be asking a question – ‘How does this guy know all this’?
Well! My answer is… “Can we change the topic”! 🙂 🙂 🙂