Monday, May 28, 2018

The art of letting go and 7 reasons to do it

It does not take a lot of strength to carry on. It takes a lot of strength to let go.

It is a very good saying. I used to have it as the footnote of all my electronic mails at one point.
The reason I had it there was not to tell people but to tell myself to apply it. 

I have always been able to see myself in a very objective manner. I pride myself on it. I can tell when I am being a brat. Or over emotional. Or really nice. I can give you a list of both my flaws as well as my good points. And one big flaw I had - I had trouble letting go. Didn't matter what. 

Reason: I used to associate letting go with failure. The moment I stop something I had started, it meant I have failed. I have been unable to carry on something I started. The passion I had when I started it has fizzled out.

When I used to let go, I felt like I have backed out of a promise. It could be anything. A diet. Working out. A course. The idea of starting something and then not finishing it seems to reflect on me. On my ability to stick to my goals. Fickle minded and weak even. I judge me.

Today, I seem to have learned to disassociate the two. Sometimes it is alright to believe that you can change your goals. To let go of things you do not want anymore. I wanted to be many things growing up. Teacher. Mother. Writer. IPS Officer. The officer bit obviously was shot down immediately. But I have managed the other three. I have two wonderful children. I work as a writer. I teach part-time as and when I can. I let go of what I realized was not my cup of tea. I have left jobs that did not do me any good. That did not work out for me. I looked for better opportunities without being judgmental. 

I read this very nice definition of commitment. The ability to do something when the passion you had when you make the promise to do it fizzles out. It is OK to say that you are not so passionate about something you were about at one point. But do not hold on for the sake of it. That will definitely hurt. 

You know the classic example. Hold a glad of water in your hand for a minute and you won't feel anything. Hold it for an hour and you will hurt. But how do you know know what to let go? Where do you draw the line between being smart and being tenacious? 

7 reasons to let go

  1. Too much negativity 
  2. It only brings unhappiness
  3. You have changed 
  4. The past is still not the past 
  5. It just does not work anymore
  6. Pointless to pursue 
  7. There is something else 

Letting go can be the best thing you have done for yourself. Holding onto something that does not do you any good can simply weigh you down. Like that innocent looking but very heavy glass of water. 

In the end, three things matter: How much you loved, how gently you lived and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

The art of not regretting

I don't know why but I tend to see regret as a bad thing. I mean it is really alright to regret, isn't it? Not all of us get it right the very first time. Not all of us are happy about our decisions. Especially those that do not end well. So when something does not go our way, we end up saying, 'dang I should not have done it'. The more you think it, the more you start hating yourself for it. It is like staying on the gas stove longer. Till you literally burn.

It is human tendency to justify an error. An error noticed only in hindsight. An error that was made but with good intentions. But then the road to hell they say is also paved with good intentions, isn't it?
I am no different. As in, not all of the calls I have made in life are.. well how do I put it.. successful.  Some people I have trusted have walked out. Some ideas have fallen apart. Money lost. Time wasted. You get the picture.
In my world, regret is more negative than anything else. Involves blame-game for a bad outcome. Almost similar to blaming someone else for a choice you made or a call you took. The what-if games are never-ending. What if I had not fallen in love. What if I had studied better. What if ... You see what I mean.
I actively try to avoid regret because it leads to more pain. It means carrying the burden of the decision and its consequence on your shoulder for the rest of your life. I really do not want to deal with it that much. I'd rather look at it as something I did and it didn't pan out and so yes, I wanna move on.
Most people take regret quite badly. Regret for many turns into self-sympathy. Drowning in sorrow. Mellowing in the sad victim state. Fairly self-destructive.
Unless you are one of the few who can use this energy to do something better and right the next time, regret can suck the life out of you.
I want to be proud of the choices that I make, good or bad. When I wonder what else would I have done if I could go back in time, I strangely do not see myself doing anything else. I have this thing inbuilt in me to see the best of what has happened in a very strong way, I guess.
This regret has turned out to become a bad disease that takes up most of the mind space. It could go two ways though. One - the person turns out to make better decisions having learned from their mistakes. Or another - not taking any more life-changing decisions and turning into a paranoid nut.
The place I am today is because of the choices I have made, good or bad. People I have met, crazy or normal (whatever that is). Even if I remove certain elements, I might not have made so much progress as I have today. 

Call it a defense mechanism. Or silver lining.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Being A Mom

I am going to start 2018 with a blog on what the lives of many moms are like.  A mom is supposed to be smart. Wise. Know it all. She is supposed to have all the answers to all the questions raised in front of her. Have the solutions to all the problems. Must not have a hair out of place. Not lose their cool. Behave like they have ten heads, twenty pairs of hands and the speed of Flash to go around sorting things out.

Well, to be honest, I have always wanted children. The idea of having a family means having children yes? And when you are growing up and you read all these fairy tale books about happily ever after. I am not going to talk about finding the love of your life, getting married and all. I am talking about what happens after that. You have children together, raise wonderful young adults and continue to live happily ever after.

So I assumed kids were very important for this happily ever after. And I do not regret it one bit. My children are a big part of who I am today and most moves I make in life are made keeping them in mind. I say most, not all. There is a part of me that needs to live for me. That wants to do stuff making sure that I give myself that space. This space is vital for me and them.

For me, it is to clear my head. There is so much clutter that this precious little me-time gives me a break and I can make fairly sane decisions. So that I do not jump to conclusions too often. I make unbiased decisions and I am mostly in a good mood.

If I am in a good mood, the kids are happy. Hence the mommy-needs-her-alone-time works marvellously for them as well.

So, while being a mom is not easy, it can be made easier. I have learnt in time that it is alright to be a little selfish. To do what I love. To make the kids watch some television so that I can read a book or catch up with an old friend on the phone. To make them play on their own so that I can do something on my own.

While some may gasp wondering how I could let the kids watch TV so that I concentrate on my life, there are a few would understand this mentality. Sometimes it is really alright to not have to devote all your time for the kids. I mean, don’t you think that the kids would also want some time on their own? Would they not appreciate some quality time doing something ‘non-productive’?

Being a mom is not about being perfect. It is about being able to let go. To be normal. To just be.