A year and a half ago, his life was different than it is right now. He had got caught up with his job. Life had changed, he didn’t meet his friends as much as he used to, didn’t have most of his classmates’ numbers anymore. He didn’t remember the last time he chilled out with them over a pint of beer. To cut the long story short, a year and a half ago, he graduated. Now, sitting by the window, drinking coffee, he forced himself to look at a piece of paper that resembled the one which comes in an advertisement for an insurance policy or some bank. Like almost any graduate, he had made a list when he was out of college. As he read his list now, this is what really went on in his head:
- Get a job in an MNC (so that everyone is pleased, viz. mum, dad, uncle, aunty, grandma, grandpa, my nosey neighbour, the milkman, the newspaper guy, the cable guy and so on.)
- Complete my Masters (Read: slog again for CAT/GRE/GATE/GMAT and a host of other exams.)
- Repay the loan after that (Did you really think getting a Masters would be cheap?!)
- Buy your own house (Like there is any chance in hell this is going to be possible! Unless you have struck gold or inherited a lot of money, this isn’t going to be an easy job. For further details you can read the Times Property supplement for the ongoing property rates in Mumbai.)
- Buy your own car (This one is tricky. Well, buying your car shouldn’t be a problem but someone should agree to pay for the sky-rocketing fuel prices for you.)
- Be a good son and get married (You know what I am getting at, don’t you? It is when the subtle hints at a cousins’ wedding turn into outright interrogation. It is then that your mother’s radar goes up and you have to oblige by putting up a profile on numerous matrimony sites without so much as a protest.)
He stared at this list for a few minutes, before picking up a pen and a paper. He didn’t scrap it, but started writing an add-on list; a list that he could latch on to the existing one. So here it goes:
- Don’t bother about what the society thinks They will have something to say no matter where you land. So, as long as you aren’t harming anyone, it is okay to go your own way. Don’t let people’s judgements and prejudices hold you back
- Stay in touch with your childhood friends They were your friends when Whatsapp wasn’t around to hold you people together. No matter what you think, you will be surprised at how well they still know you. Go give them a call today. I am sure it will make their day! And yours too!
- Do at least one thing that you love It could be anything, painting, reading, cycling, running, singing or a host of other activities. You could pick up a sport for the weekend or join a nature’s club. An evening out, watching plays or concerts could be your thing. Or a volunteering session at one of the NGO’s might do the trick. Explore your options and discover what gives you a kick
- Take Vacations Rejuvenate your body and soul. Relieve yourself from all that built-up stress and let the steam blow off. Switch off from work and take time off to explore a new place once a year. Travel alone once in a while for that much needed sense of independence as well
- When you are in Rome, speak as the Romans do Learn a new language, especially if you plan on going to a place where you don’t know the local language. In this way, you tend to gain more insight into their culture. Plus I am sure the locals will be delighted to know that you are trying!
Last on the list, but extremely important:
- Say Cheese! Sense of humor is definitely the new sexy. Smile and laugh as often as you can. It not only adds to your beauty and charm but also lifts your spirit. So do good deeds; smile and give a reason for people around you to smile!
This is a list of things he wants to follow, do you have one? If not, then make an add-on list. A list that will help you fly above the mundane activities of life.