Becoming By Michelle Obama

PC: Vimeo.com

Am I good enough? Yes, I am.
Are we good enough? Yes, we are.

The journey of an average middle-class young girl from the South Side of Chicago to becoming the First Lady of the United States of America (FLOTUS), Michelle Obama has outlined her story in the most intricate way possible.

When we flip through the pages of a book, some stories will inspire you, bring out the best in you, make you feel a part of their journey and, above all, give you hope to live the best version of YOU.

‘Becoming’ chronicles the experiences that have shaped her. The readers are welcome into her world with unnerving honesty and animated wit.   

Michelle – the girl

What happens when a young South Side Chicago girl battles the odds of being the one of ‘colour’ and pushes ahead? The outcome is one of that will lead the reader to be in awe of Michelle Robinson, who later became Michelle Obama.

Right from a young age, Michelle was taught a sense of self-confidence and belief in making her own decisions. This ultimately became the crux of her journey ahead.

Michelle – the ambitious girl

From working in the top firms of Chicago to charting her course through a series of non-profits, Michelle saw the world from a different perspective, her perspective. But she never let her ‘colour’ of skin define who she was.

Her ways to manage her demanding work schedule coupled with being present for her daughters at all times, she has beautifully showcased the struggles that almost all working women go through.

PC: Barack Obama Presidential Library

 Michelle – the FLOTUS

As the First Lady of the United States, Michelle Obama created the most comprehensive and welcoming White House in the history of its presidencies. While establishing herself as a powerful promoter of woman’s rights and the girls in the U.S., and around the globe, she dramatically changed the way families lead their lives, making them a healthier and more active. Standing with her husband, Barack Obama, as he led the U.S. through the most harrowing moments, she has shown us that there is a silver lining behind every cloud.

Their journey together comes as the assimilation of ideas, passion, the grit to do the right thing and just being focused on whatever you believe. From dealing with the nuances of having a public life to politics to being a highly ambitious career-oriented woman to raising two amazing daughters and all the work that goes on, there is something for everyone to take back from this book.

‘Becoming’ touches you and helps you to reason your aspirations, drives you to achieve what you thought was impossible and helps you get a perspective of the immense opportunities that lie ahead.

My key takeaways-

  • Every journey has its difficulties. It is up to you to make the best of the situation in front of you.
  • You can be anything you want to be, only if you have the grit to achieve it.
  • No journey is complete without the support of your friends, family and close associates. These are the people who get you going even in the toughest times.

This memoir showcases all these emotions and much more.

Warm, wise and visionary, Becoming is a passionate account of a woman of depth and substance; one who has defied all expectations and deftly risen beyond those expectations.

A story that inspires us to do the same.

Irrationally Passionate – My Turnaround from Rebel to Entrepreneur by Jason Kothari

PC: Amazon.in

BOOK REVIEW

Title: Irrationally Passionate- My Turnaround from Rebel to Entrepreneur
Author: Jason Kothari
Length: 269 pages
Format: Kindle Edition (also available in hardcover)
Publisher: HarperCollins (11th March 2020)
Rating: 5/5

While still pursuing his studies in Wharton University, Jason Kothari put together money from family and friends to salvage his childhood favourite comic book company, Valiant Entertainment. From saving the company from bankruptcy to making it to the top 3 comic book companies, after Marvel and DC, he transformed the landscape of Valiant. The company was later sold for $100 million.

Jason is known as a ‘Turnaround Leader’ because of his innate ability to turn the landscape of any business around. By transforming distressed companies such as Housing.com, FreeCharge and SnapDeal, Jason helped them save billions of dollars over a short period of time. His association with technology titans such as SoftBank and real estate conglomerate Emaar prove to be vital in their functioning today, who have invested billions of dollars in India.

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Irrationally Passionate reveals the very intriguing journey, an autobiography, of Jason from being a rebel and a train-wrecked kid to transforming into a successful business leader, who went on to become one of the top paid executives in India while only in his 30s.

It is not a typical rags to riches story but one that outlines his journey through methodical approach, passion about doing things, continuous learning and remaining focused throughout.

From learning sales at a tender age of 8 to becoming an assistant to Jackie Chan in Hong Kong at the age of 15, to learning strategy and teamwork from champion Muay Thai fighters in Thailand, to tackling huge set-backs in personal and professional life, to becoming a CEO early in his life, and many such stories are a true inspiration to every young mind beginning to make a fresh start.

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Jason’s inspiring journey across businesses, countries and companies has something for everyone to takeaway. From students to entrepreneurs to corporate CEOs to even parents of students, there is a lesson that can be derived from every stage of his life.

Irrationally Passionate is a highly personal, witty, authentic and complete account of a young entrepreneurs journey. Power packed with personal advice, professional failures and successes, and deep philosophical impacts, it will force readers to open their mind and reflect on how they observe life, work, family and spirituality by giving them a fresh outlook.

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His tone is not authoritative but communicative. His language and writing style is ‘casual’ and ‘informal’ yet ‘informative’ and ‘engaging’, making it interesting and easy to follow. Jason Kothari takes the subject of ‘Entrepreneurship’ and ‘Life Philosophies’ and relates it aptly through his life story and very clearly outlines the learning from each phase.

The chapters of the book are conversant in nature and seem to speak with us in many ways. ‘Not every seed is meant to bloom a forest’ or ‘Nothing worthwhile comes easy’, etc. are crisp reflections of the essence of the story.

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If you are looking for something to string the pearls in your mind, looking for inspiration to start a new venture or just about anything new or experimental, this book will give you valuable insights that you need.

The story play in the book makes you visualize the journey as if it’s your own and immerse you into the situation effectively.

HAPPY READING!

Mental Health Is Real And Here To Stay

A subject that used to get a lot of high eyebrows and something that not many were comfortable speaking about- Mental Health and Well-being.

We are so deeply engrossed in our lives that we often forget to check upon our basic necessity- Our Own Well-being.

It is mental health week and it is probably time to start asking ourselves the right questions and owning up to our own thoughts. It is probably time to pay a little attention to what our mind is going through…

~~~~~~~~

Twins within

A homemaker with a perfectly poised exterior and a great personality is often mistaken to have everything she ever wanted. A perfect husband, a perfect life, not too much to worry and kids who are a delight to be around with. No one, for once, thinks about the anxiety she goes through to keep up to that poised exterior and a perfectly benevolent life.

She is said to be the nurturer and giver of the family that she so dearly tends to, but we often forget to acknowledge the work that she puts in everyday, without being paid or without being thanked in many ways.

But there comes a point in her life that she has given so much that there is nothing more to give. She has pretended so hard that there is nothing more to show. She has been a person to lean on for everyone for so long that she is probably tired of that pedestal.

~~~~~~~~~

An ambitious woman who has taken the corporate world by storm is probably sitting somewhere lonely in her head, not knowing whether this is what she wants. She has a seemingly great life, with a great job, a damn cool position in the company, a hefty salary package to take care of her luxuries and probably an amazingly supportive family (including kids and hubby and the works) to back her.

Yet there is a string of loneliness that is seen hidden behind all the charisma and ambition. Not once do her family or friends actually ask her ‘are you doing alright?’ ‘are you really happy?’ ‘I hope you are doing fine’.

Just because she chooses not to show her vulnerability, does not mean she is not. She could probably be sitting right next to you, yet lost in her own realm of thoughts. She could be as anxious as anxious could be and not know it or show it.

The eternal battle…

~~~~~~~

An amazingly charismatic guy who has everything he needs; right from a family to money and everything in between. He is the kind of person you could count on during times of happiness and duress. He is that anchor to the sinking ship that may have rocked somebody during their life.

But what if his ship is slowly sinking and no one ever stopped to notice. What if he had a thousand emotions hidden deep inside and no one once asked him ‘hey man, are you doing alright?’

He was taught to not emote as it will show his weakness and he grew up seeing people around him do the same thing. He may not have consciously acted upon his emotions, but he started hiding facts from himself, that only he could understand. He was probably given a hug by his parents or his wife or girlfriend and told ‘you are a strong person’ ‘you can handle anything’.

But for once, probably, that is not what he wanted to hear. He simply wanted to hear ‘it is okay to not know everything and it is okay to not handle everything alone’ ‘we are here for you’ ‘you will not be alone’ ‘it is okay to not be a strong person and just be yourself’ ‘it is okay to stop lying to yourself’.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels.com
They may never show it …

I am alone in a crowded room full of people I love and who love me back.

Ankita Ahuja (Original)

~~~~~~~~

Mental Health has always been a precariously handled topic for centuries now. Although we have evolved with time and technology has taken a precedence over our lives, we have simply learnt to fool ourselves along the way.

Yes Mental Health is real and it is here to stay.

We have lost touch with ourselves and forgotten to tell us ‘It is Okay to be Me’. Our levels of expectations and expectations from others is nothing but a bottomless pit of illusions and forced decisions.

What can we do about it?

Learn to accept it.

~~~~~~~~~

Listen to yourself

It is not everyday that you get to introspect and have a conversation with yourself. But probably it is important to do everyday. Mental well-being is the most underrated topic of discussion and everyone seems fine to runaway from it.

But just sit down, listen to your thoughts, hear yourself, talk to yourself and journal about yourself to get a closer look at what may be bothering you or that missing piece of the puzzle called ‘YOU’.

Confidante

We have started becoming so private in our life that we prefer to not face the elephant in the room. It may just be standing in front of us and staring at us with its white long trunk, but we choose to ignore its presence.

Let’s take the bull by its horns (or in this case your mind by its presence) and learn to talk to your confidante. It can be anybody you want it to be. It may or may not be your best friend or even your parent or even your partner. It may be someone you just met and instantly knew you could relate with them.

Confide in your confidante and speak about your feelings loudly so that you can start addressing the first problem- Speaking about the problem itself.

Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

Seek Professional Help If Needed

My observation with most people around me has been that they very mention of a ‘therapist’ or ‘professional psychologist’ sends them into a frenzy and gives them the jitters.

It is never too late to address the fact that you may not be feeling right. You may not know that you have anxiety or stress or are slowly sinking into depression, but then you always have the signs staring right at you, all the time.

You may be suffering from postpartum depression (which is very common in first time mothers) and you may not know what is happening to you.

Any feeling of indifference to yourself or your thoughts needs to be addressed and it is always better to seek professional help than to delay the process of ‘Self-Healing’.

Let Go

It is not the easiest of things to do, especially in today’s tumultuous time and age, but it is important to let go every once in a while. It is OKAY just do things the way you want to and not bow down to societal pressure or even your own set standard of pressure.

It is OKAY to not be available to anyone but yourself and not feel guilty about it. It is OKAY to indulge in what you want to do and not what everyone expects you to do. It OKAY and More that OKAY to just be YOURSELF.

~~~~~~~

Photo by fotografierende on Pexels.com

Let Just Start By Saying ‘I Am Here For You’.

Mental Health and Well-being is extremely important for both men and women. Any sign of mental anxiety should not be ignored and if you feel that there is something wrong, please open your heart and say it loud ‘I Need Help’.

We cannot be there for everyone all the time and we cannot be there for everything all the time. But we sure can take our Mental well-being into our own hands and get a chance to lead a happy life.

We all need to talk. And We need to do it Now.

I hide my fears behind my tears. I put on a happy face because the show must go on. But I am the only one who knows what is happening within.

I Need Someone to Help Me Get Through This.

Ankita Ahuja (original)

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A Mother’s Run Down on E-Classes During This Dreadful Lock-down.

Nothing is permanent, everything has to change and evolve. We have been evolving and will continue to do so. Change is the only constant reality in our life.

– Ankita Ahuja (Original)

When the dreaded lock-down began in March, there was a lot of speculation around the future of education. While all things were running awry through lack of clarity from any party (government or non-government) there were a few of us (MOMs) who were mostly wondering how will the kids get their education? Where will they study? How will they study? What is the next step?

And lo behold! The solution of holding extensive e-classes came in light.

While the parents cribbed and puckered around the idea of having such classes, the kids had absolutely no clue what was going on. All they understood was, ‘you have to get up early in the morning and attend your classes for 3 hours everyday.’

While everything said and done, the kids couldn’t have been more excited to attend e-classes. And why not! They just needed to brush their teeth, sit in their PJs in front of the laptop or mobile, and their classes are on!

Wow! What a dream.

No uniforms.
No waking up to catch the bus.
No Tension for the kids (as per them) at all.

While the parents did wonder whether this would actually be feasible and would it work? The schools ensured that there was a certain coordination from every person in their school team.

From moms who are teachers to the IT staff who are moms, and moms who are moms to their kids at home, and in general all the moms everywhere 😍

While I do lay emphasis on the ‘Moms’ of the world, I honestly do not want to miss out on the fathers as well ( 😉 ) … {But that’s a story that can be churned out some other time 🤪}

Get in line

While the world sleeps every morning, moms still wake up early in the morning to get their house chores done before the household awakes. She is trying to get her house in order, before the e-classes begin, so that she can be around when her kids need her.

So please get in line and stop judging if she does not have a spic house.

CW + HW

The definition of Classwork and Homework suddenly underwent a change. While the classes lasted for about 3 hours, the kids and moms, were putting in more effort to get the books completed on time. Moms were not only getting their classwork completed with proper sections, indexes, cover pages and definitions, but also trying to understand where the homework was being uploaded and how it was being done.

It took a while to get in line, but yea I guess moms did a swell job and did manage to swoop in to get it alright. Somehow I think the kids got a little smarter and simply passed on the baton to us moms by silently telling us – ‘Go Figure’ . 🤷🏻‍♀️

Teachers Woes

Why do I mention teachers?

Duh! Teachers are moms too! And I think none of them ever had the most pleasant time teaching online.

While we were cribbing about connectivity and the course going too fast or the work to be completed is simply too much, the teachers were slogging their rear side to just get the entire course and curriculum in place.

With innovative and interactive slides and presentations to ensuring that children participate in the discussions to maintaining a decorum teaching kids online and constantly being patient (Patience! Yes a Very Big Uncontrollable White Elephant in the Room), these teachers have absolutely been a stellar support to every school.

We may not always appreciate the efforts that these ‘Moms who are Teachers‘ put in, but they have a tough nut to crack when it comes to managing their household and their kids studies and successfully running online classes everyday. 🦹‍♀️ “Cape of Faith”

The Kids Father

While there may be many or a few who are equal contributors in the house, not every household goes through this or gets this privilege. While moms are struggling to get their children to just ‘sit and concentrate’ on their e-classes without playing mobile games, the fathers of these kids can conveniently say ‘we do not want to interfere in your method of teaching’ and they simply back-off. 👩🏻‍⚖️

Oh please! Grow up and check the damn connection at least. Or is that also the ‘moms‘ responsibility alone. So if you can get your office work done, the least you could do is contribute by checking upon the kids if they need help in anyway or if they are facing a problem, while the moms get some work done around the house. Duh!!🤦‍♀️

Of Webinars and Competitions

Now if you thought there was anything missing from these e-classes, you were so wrong. The schools also covered up the rest of the time with some or the other webinar or competition, just to keep the kids “Engaged” .

Oh come on! Like really! Do they need to truly so engaged?

At the end of the day, We moms often end up forgetting what we were actually supposed to get done- Classwork or Homework or prepare for an ‘Online competition’. (enlighten us please 🤔)

Despite of all the long reminders on whiteboards and charts and timetables, we still forget where to begin and where to end.

The end is never really there… It is a prolonged misconception of the beginning.

-Ankita Ahuja (Original)

Last but not the least ... Not in the very least...

Cook Cook Cook

All moms everywhere are turning into home bakers on a show in Zumbo’s Desserts‘ or Masterchefs part of of a critical opinion from Vikas Khanna on Masterchef India-2 🤨, but in this case, the dreaded husband, in-law or kid. 🧐

So while the e-classes are meant to make her kid all intelligent and tech-savvy (which they are in their own ways), she is really trying to make the most of the time she can get to understand the work that needs to be completed.

While we Moms really try to figure what this Lock-down 1.0, 2.0, 3.0 and 4.0 has done for us, well we can only say one thing-

There is a bleak light at the end of the tunnel before we actually pass out 🙄

Prodding a Freelancer

When I started writing, nearly 6 years ago, I had no idea what this field had in store for me. Freelancing was becoming a big part of the gig economy and there were quite a few, as compared to thousands today, who were trying to make a mark in this world.

Prior to this journey, I had no clue as to the job of a Freelancer. I had probably heard about it off and on, but never really paid too much heed to it. It was only after the journey ensued that the world of freelancing started becoming more and more clearer every day.

It was all a jumble of words. Assignments given. Tasks completed. Payment received. 

There was absolutely nothing more that I could think of as a novice writer. I was more interested in getting back to full-time work, however, family commitments posed a big challenge for me to even take that step.
Although freelancing has been a journey of many glorious ups and downs (yes glorious downs as well!), but at the end it was all about what I could take away from it all.

So before you actually prod a freelancer, and I mean any category of freelancers, please heed my advice…

  • They are not doing it because they have nothing else to do! They are doing it because it is challenging enough for them to take it up.
  • They are doing it because many may have had to give up full-time careers to actually pursue working and not leave the world in all its’ glory, high and dry. (yeah! understand the pun attached.)
  • They are people who love to write, photograph, paint, market, and so on, because it gives them immense joy in presenting their thoughts, standing and emotions through their work, but are also careful when it comes to creating that perfect piece of art for their clients.
  • They are people who may like to sit at the other end of the screen and act as silent ‘Helpers’ to companies, clients, big/small enterprises in making their business stand out. These freelancers come from all corners of the world and love interacting with like-minded people.
  • They are not a ‘lost group of people’ who have to earn an extra buck to make ends meet! They truly enjoy doing what they do, and no one has the right to meddle in their business.
  • They respect every individual because of the type of clients or ‘colorful people’ that they have virtually come across while doing their work.
  • They have immense knowledge on a variety of subjects and topics, that probably a lay-man can only visually comprehend if he/she is a keen observer. There is a lot of reading, understanding, researching and looking up webmasters/dictionaries involved to create a good piece of content worthy of the client and his/her business. This holds true to every profession that has a freelancer attached to it, and not only writing.
  • They evolve EVERY DAY because of the tremendous effort that they put in while doing their work with precision.
  • They upskill EVERY DAY because they know that competition is stiff and it is truly ‘Survival of the Wordiest/Smartest’ that will help them remain in front of prospective clients.
  • They charge variable amounts, because of the experience and skill they carry, along with the innate ability to relate to every topic with ease. Money is very important, however, for most freelancers, quality supersedes everything else.
  • They work at odd hours to make sure that their work is never compromised in quality.
  • They AIM to make themselves better, along with contributing a little more to make this world a better place. (You will be surprised to know how many unknown people have helped each other in their freelancing careers.)

So, before ‘Prodding a Freelancer’ do take a look inside and ask yourself, ‘Are you truly happy in doing what you are doing?’ or ‘Am I learning anything new?’

Taking a jibe at freelancers just because they choose to work from home or at their flexible timings, does not give anyone the right to plunge them with comments.

The job of a Freelancer is far more challenging than that of a regular person, because of the level of intricacies involved in delivering every piece and creating something more unique than the other. Learning everything on their own to become better in their respective fields, sets them apart from a lot of regular peers.

Juggling Roles Of A Woman

Every Woman is a ‘Wonder Woman’, until triggered…

Ankita

There is a role that women play that not everyone is equipped to handle. Women are known to multitask every day of their lives, making every moment count.

By being a wife, a daughter, a mother, a freelancer/full-time workaholic, a daughter-in-law, a sister-in-law, a friend, an adviser, a boss, a manager, a homemaker and much more, women create the most drastic impact on the lives of everyone surrounding her.

She known as a super-woman, not allowed to get tired, to get bogged down by mundane tasks, or simply a person who just keeps everything in place. How tough is it to be a woman?

Well, the answer is quite simple- Incomparable! 

Women form the most integral part of a family, without whom survival would just be survival, nothing more. She is the pillar of strength to her daughter, a compadre/lover to her spouse/partner, the lifeline of her family and anything else that someone wants her to be! But are her efforts rewarded?

The juggling roles of a woman have far reaching effects on everyone around her.

She is the umbilical cord that nurtures her infants, turning them into able human beings. Her role is crucial for the survival of an entire human race! If not women, no one would be standing here today!

Yet, we misconstrue her abilities, her intentions, her power, her emotions and above everything else, just ‘Her’. She is often not given the due credit that she deserves. She is considered to be just a simple ‘housewife’ or a ‘wife’ or ‘just a mother looking after her kids’ without having any knowledge about how the world functions.

If this was true, You and I wouldn’t be penning down thoughts and words that matter so much, would we?

She loves the role of a juggler, one who can make everyone laugh and cry at the same time. She loves to ‘handle’ everything on her own because she knows her might is much bigger than anyone else’s. She can breach the thoughts closest to her, making her an asset to have. Yet, she is simply considered a ‘woman’.

The juggling roles of a woman are difficult to comprehend, yet most visible in their effects. She is that string of life that weaves everything together.

She is that jewel everyone wants in their crown, but not many acknowledge her presence.

She can be many things, yet she is a ‘Woman’ . A Woman who knows her might all too well, yet ‘chooses’ to keep everything grounded, to maintain a balance in life.

Next time you fail to acknowledge a ‘Woman’, remember ‘She’ is the reason you are ‘here’ and ‘She‘ is the reason you ‘may not’ have been here too…

Go up to your mom and tell her how much she means to you, sneak up on your partner to tell her she means the world to you, acknowledge your boss by telling how precious her guidance is, or simply leave a gentle Thank You note to ‘Women’ you know, or creating an impact that no one else would be able to do…

Socially Stimulated OR Masked For Life!

Geet has a beautiful life. A loving family and loads of friends. Her wishes are fulfilled in the most surprising ways and she has nothing to complain.

Every time Geet takes to social media, she has posts flaunting her beauty, her travel escapades, her socializing, her family and even her pooch! Perfect. Isn’t it?

I rate this as a person who is ‘Socially Stimulated‘ to share her experiences through different social media accounts. Whether it is Facebook or Instagram or Twitter, there is something for every one of her followers to regale and go ‘ahhh….’

But, there is something drastically worrisome. She is ‘too perfect to be true’, she has the most perfect life, her posts are emotionally connected and she knows how to trigger a response. A great marketer, I must say!

She is addicted to social media and the ‘Likes’ or ‘Comments’ she receives.

Her addiction is stimulated by her peers, her relatives, her colleagues, and everything around her. She craves for attention from social media, often ignoring her precious life around.

However, she is slowly slipping into depression and no one even takes notice! She is ‘Masked for Life’.

She cannot accept less number of likes and always tries to find ways to keep her audience engaged, even if it means posting something absolutely measly.

My thoughts were completely stirred by a short movie that I happened to watch on Netflix- NOSEDIVE.

This particular movie actually, aptly, captures the way we all are ‘Slaves to Social Media’ and breaks down what it does to us. We live under constant pressure to prove ourselves in front of all people, we have to be polite to people, even if we do not want to be; we are under constant SCRUTINY for our actions and emotions, we are not free to express ourselves and WE ultimately break down in the most horrific way possible.

This addiction often stems from a daunting desire to prove ourselves in front of our peers and the world- ‘how perfect my life is’.

Perfection is a Myth and We are its’ Stimulants!

-Ankita
-Ankita

We may have come across such individuals, even our friends, who indulge in such addiction, without even realizing it. They often forget to take notice of all the beautiful things around them, just so that they can tell the world about every little detail about their life.

People take interest, of course, they do! People are more interested in what others do, than what they do themselves. This is a reality, and a very pressing one too.

What does this do to us? It makes us slaves of social media, where we seek happiness in others worldly posts, rather than our simple life.

Being Social Stimulated is a good thing, only if it-

  • Stimulates us to think positively.
  • Does not pressurize us to feel negative about OURSELVES.
  • Does not sow the seed of comparison in our mind.
  • Helps us to achieve our goals.
  • Builds a positive mindset that will help in our life and career.
  • Makes room for creativity.

If you think you are slowly steering towards being ‘Masked for Life‘, it is time to put a brake on ‘showcasing your reel life’ and ‘paying attention to your real life’.

You Are Dispensable

Don’t like the way the title starts? I am sure there is a lot crossing your mind at this moment, and the one thing that is prominently standing out is- Am I Dispensable?

We live in an increasingly active Gig Economy, with cutthroat competition everywhere. Whether it is your kid winning an award at school or an employee not being recognized for his/her contribution; everything around you boils down to one thing- Can I truly be replaced? Is everything around so superfluous, making it nothing less than a bubble waiting to be burst?

Well, this is a reality that is quite hard-hitting, but a fact.

Ashok loved his work too much. His dedication and analytical skills made him an asset to the organization. The CEO, Mr Ramakrishnan, loved the way this fellow conducted everything around him, with precision.
He loved his enthusiasm, his timely delivery, his passion for his work and a true attribute as a leader.

Having contributed around 10 years in the organization, Ashok was considered to be an asset and in a ‘safe-zone’ by most of his peers and top management. But, was this reality or a dream?

Ashok had worked very hard to get to the level he was at. He did sacrifice his personal life, his personal time, his time with Himself, to get to where he was today.

Remember there are no free lunches in this world, and Ashok had strived too hard to get to the place he wanted to be. Or did he?

Today, after almost a decade in the organization, Ashok did something that he would not usually do. He Took A Long Leave. Why did he do that? What was wrong? Why is Ashok on a holiday? Is everything alright with him? All these questions crossed everyone’s mind and no one quite understood the reason behind it.

Ashok was slipping into Depression, and no one ever got a hint about it. 

Why did this happen?

He worked too hard to get here. He did not give himself any time to breathe or enjoy the small things in life. His work-life balance was completely off the charts. He did not have a companion to go back to at the end of the day. His parents stayed really far away. And this, my friend, had started taking a toll on him after 10 years.

He had started slipping in tasks. His delivery was good but not as great as it used to be. There was an indispensable bar he had set for himself, and it was difficult to get there all the time.

This was getting noticed by his CEO, Mr Ramakrishnan, the top management, and they were getting really worried about the company’s deliverable. They had already started looking out for a “Suitable Replacement” for Ashok, someone with his skill sets.

Ashok was dispensable after all! But, he did not build a back up during his course of time.

We all live in a similar coherently stressful environment every day. There are many of us who think that we are indispensable. It is time to stop thinking in this manner and start doing something about it.

Build a hobby, take some time off, meet new people, join social groups, build a community around you, get a companion, and most importantly ‘Build Another Source Of Passive Income’.

You may find it ridiculous at the off-set, however, taking a step in this direction will start to make your life a tad bit exciting and secure.

Build on your passion.

If you love to play music, ,start teaching it, or performing it.

If you love to read, start a book reading community. Contribute at your close libraries and shelters around to keep this passion going.

If you love to Write, get down to it! Start by blogging on different online platforms, build your own blog or website, become a guest contributor on different online publications; start building a back up.

We are all dispensable as employees, as best students, as freelancers, as influencers, or as anything you do. But, the key to change this in your hands.

No one can change YOU. YOU are the only one who cannot dispense YOU. So build on your personal brand, start talking to people and make an alternate career to help you become a little more Indispensable to many.

Redundant Memories- Every Mind Has A Story To Tell

R

A Mind is but Memories in every state of confusion… Influenced by factors out of reach of a human mind…

Of redundant televised series
To crumpling mindsets
To feeble outcasts
Set to jeopardize a steady stance

Of mass shootings
To criminally insane human beings
To guns galore
Of terrible facsimile tragedies

Of progressive countries
Inhibiting regressive behavior
To blinded entities of enraged aberration
To mimicking human life through Artificial intelligence

The thoughts that capture the mind endlessly…

Of breaking stereotypes
To harboring maligning
The languishing soul is all so much
Nothing but a mere weapon of choice

Thoughts created to harm others
To make the world a better place
To create a sizzle and a crackle
To remove the ennui of today!

There is nothing called Perfection
But to remove the very thought
Is cruel and degenerate
In every way possible…

Nothing called perfection, it is just an illusion, that’s why every Stone is Different in a Pyramid of Deception!

My Sweet Cupcakes

Today, both my daughters had this amazing idea to bake cupcakes. Not that we don’t buy them off the bakery counter, however, this time they wanted to bake one for themselves (and also indulge in a little sweetness from the bakery).

They finally convinced me, after weeks of persuasion and a long haul, to gather the ingredients and get them the cupcake moulds to start the process. Instead of using ‘all-purpose flour’, we substituted it with ‘wheat flour’ (a little health never killed anybody ehh.. 😉 ). We go the ‘chocolate powder’, ‘salted butter’, ‘eggs’, ‘vanilla essence’, ‘walnuts’, ‘baking powder’ and ‘baking soda’. Now tell me doesn’t it sound all yummy and tempting to actually bake it yourself??

We sieved all the dry ingredients and gave the wet ones a nice whisk with a hand-beater. Everything was moving perfectly well and looked absolutely delicious. (If the unbaked ingredients look so yummy, you can only image how the end result would be, isn’t it?)

We put it in the microwave and baked it for hardly 10 mins and.. Viola.. the cupcakes were baked to perfection. We let them cool down and waited till we could at least try one of them… After a while, we all took the cupcakes and sat down for a hearty sweet feast. One bite and we realized that something was amiss. We could not quite figure out what. Another one got out taste buds closer to realize that we had burnt the cupcakes a little from the inside. Why did this happen? We followed the steps to the ‘T’.

********* Moment of Truth***********

After a deep analysis, my daughter concluded that we may have left the microwave for 2 minutes extra. So, rather than baking it for 8 minutes, we actually baked it for 10 minutes!

************ Cake Measures*************

Life is quite similar to that of a cupcake. We take all the right ingredients and bake it in the oven called life, only to realize that we may have forgotten some crucial element along the way.

Just like the slightly burnt cupcake, we tend to overdo things that may hurt a loved one, cause strife to an unknown person and leave us with a burnt taste in our mouth. We cannot always have a perfect life, ’cause frankly, ‘Perfection’ is an Utopia that everyone dreams of having, but no one can have it. Accept things the way they are and try to make them better, rather than constantly battling against it.

Our lives are also made of these small ingredients that comprise of love, laughter, sadness, richness, poverty, grief, greed, jealousy, selflessness, humility and everything in between..  Just like by missing one ingredient, our recipe can change its taste; similarly, we cannot always dream of having or leading a perfect life. We will face our “Moments of Truth” every now and then, but that does not mean you give up your ‘Cupcake’ forever. It means you learn from it, face it, battle it, and conquer it.

Don’t let one sour moment, ruin your sweetness forever. Life cannot always be a bed of roses, (even roses have thorns). Take some time out and think- does this particular aspect give me happiness? Or would I be better off, if I could let it all go? How do I channelize my thoughts so that I do not let any negativity affect me? Which is the better way to live- being content with what I have or by complaining continuously about what I don’t have?

*************Food for thought********

cupcakes

Baking a cupcake is easy, but leading a life full of every moment is quite difficult. We tend to lose ourselves because of our half-baked ‘cupcake’, but why let it stop you from baking more? You will face difficult situations in life, face unnecessary illogical banter from closed ones and even from friends, but does that mean you keep thinking about it or take peace by letting it all go…

Make your cupcakes sweeter by adding a little ‘YOU’ to your mould. You will be surprised how it actually turns out to be. Neglecting yourself a journey called Life will leave you with a thousand heartbreaks. But, making use of one moment to bring ‘Yourself’ and ‘Your loved ones’ a moment of happiness, will change your life forever.

My Sweet Cupcakes...

Set goals- happiness goals, to take joy in small pleasures of life. Life is just toooo amazing to let it go waste…. Enjoy it! Live it! Be One with it!

************** The End ***********