Hoping into Bus No. 620 from Shivaji Stadium one busy weekday, I could see so many people all around. All, a part of faceless, identity less crowd, which makes Delhi a Metropolitan city, a city of immigrants. Most of them if not all have come from small cities with big dreams, aspirations. But how many could realize their dreams, well…that is a million dollar question.
From middleclass, to lower income group, all running, scattered everywhere, for livelihood. But is it all life has to offer, “earning livelihood”.
It makes me think; actually I have a hyper active left brain, which is why I always keep thinking. That day also I was forced to look at these tired faces and I started thinking…
Each face has a story to tell. A story unheard, untold. A lady standing, looking worried may be waiting for her bus for a log long time. May be her mother is sick and she really has to rush home but she can’t afford an auto-rickshaw, that will upset her tightly arranged monthly budget which includes her EMI’s, child’s school fees, her own expenses, etc. There stands another man, staring at nothing at all, ogling at thin girls who walk past him wearing sandals worth 150/- and jeans from Jan path. Under the shade of a tree stands another man, looking worried just like the others, may be he got late to his office, probably he has a nagging wife and a grown up daughter who is not getting married.
People after people, man and women, brushing shoulders, unaware of each other’s presence, such close a presence that if their brain stops working for a second, they would all collide into each other. A brain, which does not stop thinking for a second. It keeps ticking second by second, preparing you for the daily grind of life.
Each soul has a story to tell, each soul an island in itself. Each soul has lost touch with his own self because 24 by 7 he is busy running around, earning for a livelihood.
But is it really worth it?
We spend 12 years in school, study hard. Why? So that we get admission in the prestigious University of Delhi. Why? So that we can get good jobs? Why? To earn a livelihood. Why? To have great careers. Why? So that one-day we become Vice President of this billion-dollar company. Why? Well, either because we actually want it, or, because we have been designed to want it, or, may be we ourselves don’t know if we want it or not however, since everyone wants it so we also want it, or, because our families want us to be there.
Why? So that they can boast, feel proud. So that we can boast of our achievements and create an impression on others. But Why? Because, it shows that we are worth something.
Come to think of it. The question that I want to ask each of you is, why on earth are we all doing the same thing? At least most of us. Even if we don’t want to.
We would join MBA, MBBS, and Engineering, keep slogging, and keep cribbing. Then one day we land up in good companies with great money. But we still are unhappy, we still complain. We still look out for more hefty pay packages, higher designations. Then one day we grow old and look back and say, “when I was small, I wanted to be a cricketer. When I was small I wanted to be a soldier”, etc. Then why did not you become a cricketer? Why did not you realize or at least tried to realize your dreams? After all, you get just one life to live. Out of which you already have spent 60 years doing something, which others wanted you to do.
I may not be making sense to most of you but I make complete sense to myself. And I say this because I have had 1st hand experience. I wasted 13 years of my life because of a wrong choice, doing things, which someone else wanted me to do. In the ball game I ended up making myself unhappy. I cannot go back but at least I have realized the importance of youth, time and being happy.
Yes. Being happy is what we all aspire to achieve. All of us are struggling just to be happy and content. So that we have better quality of life, higher standards of living, material gains, what ever you might call it. We are doing all of this just for one purpose: – which is happiness.
However, we actually have forgotten the true essence of happiness. It’s not a goal that we have to achieve. It’s a state of mind, which we have to live in by consciously choosing it.
My friend and my parents are always concerned whenever I take a break from my work. And the funniest part is they are more concerned than I am. And I fail to understand their reason for worry. All right, I keep taking breaks from my work; I keep changing my streams, because I get bored quickly. I realize I may not become “The Vice President” of a billion dollar company. But the fact remains, I don’t aspire to become one. My key to happiness is simplicity. If I get bored I will look for alternatives. I may even become a primary school teacher if that gives me happiness. The goal is “happiness” and not a career with the world’s greatest Fortune 500 companies. After all life is not about earning a livelihood. It’s about being happy and passionate about living and doing things, which you always wanted.
Life is not about spending 60 years and then looking back and saying to your grand children, “ I wanted to become a painter but had to become a clerk, so now I want you to become a painter and realize my dreams”. The grand child becomes this famous painter and spend another 60 years pf his life and tells to his grand child, “ I wanted to become a film star but my grand pa wanted me to become a painter so I want you to become a film star”. And the cycle goes on….
I think that explains to some extent why our parents have big dreams and why we end up becoming something we never actually wanted to become.
I have taken most of my decision on my own. Most of them have been mistakes but then I have learnt from them. And at the end of it my regrets and my rewards are my own. I don’t have to share my credit with any one nor do I play blame game for my mistakes.
I handled VP level escalations for a leading telecom company. I was solely responsible for taking care of real estate accounts for world’s biggest companies while I was working with the world’s 3rd largest real estate company. Earned 50,000 US dollars in the last fiscal year for my company and for the Indian Government. Independently responsible for handling 180 locations across the globe for a big insurance company and could have made major difference in their audit sheets with change in few cents. That is my achievement and I am happy about it.
I am again looking for a complete change of career path. Just to seek my own happiness. I made a difference in a company and again the quest to make a difference in something else is there.
I could have chosen to stick with the same company for years and earned big money, big designations, but that would not have given me any happiness.
Life after all is living the way you want it, with quality so that when you look back you see your grandchildren showing your picture to his best friend and saying, this is my grand pa and he always wanted to climb the Mount Everest and he climbed it”.
What do you think about this?