Big Dreams in Stuffy Small Rooms.

How many times have big dreams sprung up in your head and all you can see is a tunnel vision with the goal at the end? Slowly though, the dream disappears and life gets back to being what it was, and stuck where it was. What stops the dream from moving to the next step? 

Big dreams need room to breathe. We imagine our big massive dreams in small closed quarters under the comfort of our familiar lives. Our dreams can’t fit there. It needs pomp, splendour and fireworks! What it needs is our strong will and acceptance to change. 

Big dreams will change our life. It can rock our boat, topple us over and run the very boat over us. But we need to trust it, even in the bleakest hour. Trust it to guide us the right way, navigate us to the wizard of oz. 

Leap of faith, silver linings, light at the end of the tunnel, all for a reason and so much more of these positive quotes will appear in our heads, cuz, oh boy, we are so going to need them! 

It’s only then you will start realising, the dream was not the goal at all. The goal was set to inspire a hidden goal.. Give life a purpose.. And with purpose comes the will to live.. And with the will to live.. You will pursue happiness in every possible way. 

Dreams are not set for others.. Dreams are not set for yourself too. Dreams are tools we create to make us feel our lives are worthwhile. Having a dream makes you feel life is a miracle. However, the journey towards it makes you realise that you, my dear, are the miracle. 

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10 ways to be more caring (towards what really matters) 

There is a reason why many people come across as cold. It’s usually because their care has been misused. Manipulation is now an accepted skill set and being thick skinned is how one can survive people and life. I won’t say I did not get carried away by this wave. It seemed to work quite well and hey, not getting hurt really helped. However, it manifested into something deeper and morbid, which I sadly noticed late. I stopped caring, period. 

Nothing moved me. Closer to home, friends who really needed me, family that reached out to me and generally people I met on an everyday basis through work did not touch me in any way either. I skimmed through stories like a robot, getting back to whatever I was doing gladly once it was over. I was suspicious of NGOs and service people. I continued to be polite, but that was an empty shell. 

I may have pulled on the same way without realising for a long time except that I suddenly saw that nothing really makes me happy anymore. I used to call myself an optimist, but that’s gone. I developed this weary sense towards life, waiting drudgingly for the end. And frankly, it is too darn boring!

So now, I have decided to come midway. I am going to care, but about things that I feel matter. I made this quick check list for myself-

1. I will feed a need, not an ego– Many a times people need you, which you can sense even if they don’t ask you. I’m going to attempt being there for them. Then there are people who want you to be there because they said so. So no, I’ll skip that. 

2. Read– I can’t force myself to care. That’s not a natural state right now. But I can read what is happening everywhere. I’ll research, follow up and keep myself updated with the various causes that need human compassion. And hopefully, one day, I will yield.

3. Inspiration– I will find out what other people do. Common people, celebrities, politicians anyone. With the internal motivation dead, I need to seek external motivation. 

4. Local causes– plant a tree drives, dog shelters, farmers market, schools etc. I will now push myself to lend a hand. 

5. Listen– one thing that has  taken a real beating are my listening skills. I will make a grand attempt to put myself in others shoes. 

6. Spirituality– where ever I can find it. Yoga, worship place, home- read about the cosmos and understand the significance of a human life in this universe. Will try to seek the bigger picture.

7. Travel– this should actually come higher on the list. I will make it a point to travel as much as I can. Expand one’s mind and humble the soul. 

8. Laugh– I will laugh as much as I can. Look at the lighter side, appreciate humour and crinkle the eyes more often! 

9. Be patient– this is the tough part. It’s so easy to be indifferent. But I will owe it to myself to hold on till it changes me and I realise the big picture. After that, it simply wouldn’t matter. 

10. Influence– this will take long, but hopefully one day I can make a substantial difference which will make this journey worthwhile.

Wish me Luck 🙂 

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Search and rescue

Matter to mull over. Very beautifully written.

candidkay

My mother, when she was dying, said to me, “There are no wrong answers, Kris.”

She was speaking from the vantage point of someone who has nothing left to lose. Someone with the luxury of looking back on a life filled with worry about making the right choices and realizing, in the end, most of those choices become irrelevant.

I was torn between staying at her bedside and going back to Chicago to take care of my kids. I felt I did not have a choice. My kids needed me. I was the glue in our household. But my mother needed me also.

Recently, I was worrying about the right job, the right parenting, the right financial and life decisions. As I’m sure many of you do. Few of us are immune to trying to game the system for the best results.

choices, options, alternativesIn most situations, you can stay put until…

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The day the house fell silent.

 It was nothing actually. A little itching in the throat, which I have experienced before. The onset of a deadly cold. Started taking precautions like hot water, turning down cold beverages, cutting down on oilyfood (yeah right!). I was expecting a nasty cold that was going to strip me off all my dignity in publicBut it turned out to be much more

 

I get up in the morning with a huge cotton ball stuffed down my throat. Felt like that anyways. I dragged myself out of bed and went through the chores of boring routine. The bell rang and it was the cleaning lady to take out the garbage. Realized there was some good food I can give and I ran in to get it. Handed it over and started telling her what it was. Would have gone smoothly if only she had heard me. And she did not because they never left me. I had no voice! I looked shockedshe looked amused. She wished me a speedy recovery and left. I closed the door, still in shock. Tried to talk 3-4 times in front of the mirror but they were just some alien codes, which even I didn’t understand!!!! It was an attack of laryngitis. 

 

I was determined. Nothing can stop me from talking. Not even physical strangulation of vocal cords. So I headedout to school and with heroic willcroaked signals for people to follow. Only that they didn’t. And I had to repeat everything straining my voice further. I had to cancel my classes that day for obvious reasons and sit as undeterred and dignified as possible carrying out my non-talking work. 

 

That’s when I realizedI needed to talk! It was killing me to not express my opinions, pin point when details were missed, share ideas… it was horrifying! I just burst out and spoke and spoke and spoke. Rather, made noises and more noises. And I was at peace. But a lot more throat pain. 

After I reached home I had a con call with friends (have no idea why, haven’t done that in ages when I could actually speak to be understood.), spoke non stop at home about how difficult it was for me to speak, spoke about news, politics, polar bears, everything. I could not stop. Finally it was time to sleep and my throat ached like a fracture. 

 

It suddenly dawned on me, what if I sound like this forever? To make it worse I remembered my help telling me I sounded ten years older with this voice. I panicked. I quickly googled home remedies and did everything in the list. I slept fervently praying for my original voice.

 

It was the same the next dayActually, it was worse. Now I was really scared. I googled again and realized I had ignored one important point. Voice rest. Not to talk. I had to SHUT UP. And that was easier said than done. 

 

I again went to school, but this time I was different. I really shut up. Only spoke when really necessary. I let people help me, talk in behalf of me. I had to cancel lessons again but did not feel like I had failed. I sat quietly finishing my work, and realized, nothing was wrong or different. I came home and made no calls, messaged people who had called me to inform them of my condition. Did not complain, did not whine, did not small talk. Spoke only when it was extremely required, after careful weighing in my mind. 

 

I still haven’t got my voice back completely, but I have been healed from the need to be constantly acknowledged and heard. I have started thinking more, for my own good rather than just to showcase it to the gallery. It took an illness to reveal another one that was hiding. 

 

I cannot wait to get my voice back though! 

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Will you be my Chamak Chalo? Anyone?

I hate, and please note all the frustration, anger and helpless surrender in that single word, yes hate running on the treadmill. Because when you step onto the treadmill, clocks and watches get readjusted to ‘hell on earth’ time zone. One minute on good old earth is exactly, with no exaggeration, a micro second on the treadmill. But with negligible metabolism, laugh till you cry kind of stamina and ‘exactly proportional to the hate for the treadmill is the love for food’ phenomena, I sadly am eternally in an on and off relationship with that stupid stupid running in the same place moron.

With that settled and no backing out I have to create my little solace in the timeframe of each lifetime I spend on the treadmill (separate time zone, remember?). Started off with day dreaming. It really makes time fly for me so it could work in this scenario too right? Na na na, totally wrong. Day dreaming is a specific software only for wasting precious time. Like, for example, you have a presentation to prepare in the next one hour. It will slip in, take over you for the next forty minutes and leave exactly when it’s just the right time to waste the rest in panic. Ohhhh yea, they are bedfellows. But, if you try calling out it’s name thrice to really hypnotize you in the time of need, well, it doesn’t appear. You end up looking at the ticker continuously and believe you me; it stares back at you with the exact same number, continuously.

Day Dreaming out, what next? Aha counting numbers! Like with sheep and stuff!! Didn’t work. About a 1000 of them had jumped over the fence and entered for ‘America’s next top model’ but here on my ticker, not a freaking one minute thirty seconds had passed.

Then, finally I fell back on music. Like every gym, my gym has music too. But wait, isn’t there a separate rack of CDs which state- ‘Buy one CD with 10 songs in it and you never ever have to buy a CD ever again’. Yes, there is a rack in that name and yes all gyms definitely buy their CDs from there. Including mine. (And they are perplexed why people bunk, jeez.) So that music was out of question. Then started taking my Ipod to the gym. I am sure many of you out there are spweoofing me off right now saying- ‘God, what was that whole around the world story for when she got an Ipod’ but wait, there is a reason why that was not my first choice. One, because, it always managed to be low battery right then, exactly when just I was stepping out to the gym. No seriously, no excuse. When I had that totally kiddie proofed, the second problem was how I was distracted with the popping out earphones right in between my Olympic run. And then another super traumatic problem. Changing of songs. Not having the song which you really want to listen to at that very moment and not any of the other 500 in the play list would do. The list can go on, but now I have to get to the part which will relate to the headline. Yes, finally.

I have now made a playlist of about 15 songs. They get added and subtracted on a fairly regular basis but more or less that’s the number. And what genre are those 15 songs? Bollywood! No no, not those retro classics, they are absolutely nothing compared to the recent popular ones! Let me explain better, please. They call in my evasive friend Day Dream. And both of them weave a story where I am the protagonist of alllll the songs and there are flowers, super close ups of my electric smile, hair flying, a replay of Aishwarya Rai running in the last scene of Devdas (Oh come on, you got to be kidding me if you havn’t!) my dancing eyes, rich gorgeous lehengas adorning the super thin me….. aaaah see the link? Gym, dance, beauty, awesome figure…. love it when I have a precise logical conclusion!!
And so this has worked for me so far on the ridiculous treadmill (Still can’t get over the foolishness of running in the same place though and saying “oh I ran 5kms”. God!). That is, on the days I haven’t bunked. I must crank over this one in a whole separate blog entry.

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This post has made great impact on me to a point of being inspirational. Worth sharing amongst all women folk especially if you are anywhere like me…a sick sick hoarder and living in a delusional hope of getting thinner 😦

into mind

SONY DSC

Traditionally, spring cleaning was meant to rid a house of its wintery layer and prepare it for spring. I don’t own a house, but I do own a closet, and the principle is the same: you can’t put your new spring clothes into a jam-packed closet full of knits, tights and other cold-weather items, right?

Along with a seasonal turnover, now is a good time to do a general big edit and purge your closet of everything that’s only wasting space. I have to confess, I love the editing process. I think my wardrobe should be a reflection of my style and my aesthetic judgment. Every item that I don’t really like or that just doesn’t look good on me, is tainting that reflection a little bit, and throwing it out feels like a detox.

Once you detoxified your closet, you might be left with a lot less clothes, but at…

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The trip that would never end- Where it all started.

We had been talking about it atleast for 6 months and that’s the part I remember. I am sure the first mention would go back to a long time ago in the midst of a couple of drinks and happy smiles. But the way two of us are and the way everyone can vouch for, nobody really believed we would do it. “This would be just one of their fancies spoken for the heck of it and action taken for none.” Frankly, we agree to that. We really did not believe we would do it. Before you trip over any wild imaginations running naked and free let me come to the anti-climax- it was all just about a trip. Wait, heck no- The trip that would significantly celebrate our being together for a whole one year. Married. Aah, now makes sense?
Well, so we did go ahead and between all those doubts and huff offs managed to book our tickets, place to stay when we would land and yes that’s about it. No other plans. All to be decided on the go. Backpacking. We were ecstatic about the 10 days ahead in a new place, new people and the most important day of a year amongst complete, absolute strangers on a strange land. It felt good. It would be just us for each other, no matter how the trip shapes up, no matter how the circumstances would turn out to be. Didn’t seem to be a bad deal at all.  So we spent time with our owns for little pre anniversary celebrations, collected our gear, packed and unpacked a few times till we got it right and eagerly counted our days to leave for… Oh, did I mention Vietnam?

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