Tag Archive: life


What is SUCCESS?

But even before this question, a rather intriguing question passed my mind

What if I am already successful, but I don’t know it?

 

I have been basically torturing myself from the last one month or so regarding the issue of success. I was beating myself up, berating myself and criticizing myself in the meanest ways possible! At the basis of this was comparison to other people whom I perceive to be “successful”. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you’ll know that I am a full-time musician. And for artists and musicians, success is even more hard to define. Would I call Justin Bieber/Lady Gaga successful? I don’t know. I don’t look up to them and so I actually I don’t care if they failed or not. But I’d say Sting is very successful. Not because of the money or the glamour, but because he does exactly what he wants to do, sings his own songs all around the world. That for me is success. Doing exactly what you want to do and getting paid for it! But everyone can’t be Sting. For example, do you think Sting’s guitar tech or his sound engineer go home and cry because they’ve failed to be on stage with a bass guitar singing a song they’ve written? NO! Because I’m sure they’re pretty satisfied being on Sting’s team and doing exactly what they gain satisfaction from…mixing sound, tuning his guitars etc.

I just thought of all this. From the time I picked up the guitar for the first time when I was 16, I knew that I wanted to play guitar all the time, make music, sing and have fun. And you know what? I’m doing JUST THAT. Isn’t that success? I think it IS! I have been so busy driving myself paranoid because I am not yet on my way to becoming Sting-like, that I haven’t had a moment to acknowledge my success. I am already successful! I have enough money right now that I can sit throughout the day reading books and watching movies and then going out for leisure walks, working out, practising different styles of music on my guitar, buy new equipment etc. That IS success!

Now I am not saying that I am satisfied and that I don’t want anymore money or exciting opportunities to play and perform. But that will happen joyfully only after I’ve fully acknowledged my first successful milestone: Surviving successfully as an independent musician. And I’ve done pretty well upto here…including releasing my debut music album last year.

I have always been relatively shy considering that I am a performer, an artist. I am not flashy or flamboyant even in my daily life. I’m not loud or attention-seeking in conversation- it’s just who I am. And as of today I feel that I won’t feel too bad if I don’t develop showman-ship like some of my idols or my contemporaries. That would be like going against the grain of who I am as a person. I am all for learning and growing and imbibing desirable qualities, but I feel foolish even to imagine being a loud, extroverted performer. From this point on, I have a few dreams and ideas about my future life which truly make me happy. And being ridiculously famous isn’t one of them. I have had the great fortune of being closely connected with a lot of high-achieving, super-famous individuals and friends. One of them gave me a very interesting and intelligent definition of fame. He said that fame only indicates how many people approve or disapprove of you. That’s it. There’s nothing beyond it. It makes so much sense. So for any kind of artists, it’s even more pertinent. Talking of Sting, I recently discovered that not everyone like him! It was shocking to find forums on the internet actually dissing him and his music. So basically a certain number of people dislike him+certain number of people like him=Sting’s fame. Approval+Disapproval. Likes+Dislikes. And I after realizing this, I am not getting along famously with idea of fame πŸ™‚

I have anyway always composed, sung and played what I like. I almost never listen to people when it comes to musical or artistic choices. I can’t be any other way because this way makes me immensely happy. To listen to my own songs exactly the way I wanted them to sound is an unmatched feeling and so, I don’t think I will be affected much by the opinions of listeners.

I’d rather be true to my calling, true to my adventure, making pots and pots of money, travel around the world, soaking in culture, forging friendships, read a lot, attend performances, wake up at noon if I feel like it, build my body, acquire new skills and be happy in my personal life. That will be success for me. But success is not one event or one day or one situation…it’s an ongoing thing. It’s a process. Although I do realize now that I CANNOT get to success from a feeling of failure. Success leads to success. I’ve only failed in being successful at something that I didn’t want to be successful at to begin with! I am okay with that!

So what’s YOUR idea of success?

 

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The Art of Letting Go

I have been subjecting myself regularly to a lot of psychological experiments these days. Most of these experiments include adopting a certain belief and then observing how I feel and respond to it and then drawing my conclusions based on my observations.

The act of “letting go” as been a sort of challenge for me over the years especially in romantic relationships and even articles as well written as THIS ONE written by Marc and Angel, does not help sometimes to actually let go. We’ve all been there. The longest time I’ve taken to get over this one person from my past has been FOUR YEARS!!! That’s an awfully long time and I realized that it’s very difficult to get over a person who has especially made you very very happy. And I knew that I was doing everything to get over them sincerely but it anyway took as long as it did. Last night just before I drifted to sleep, an epiphany happened. And I smiled because I KNEW that I had hit upon the answer to the question “So how do you get over someone?” Here’s how:

  1. Understand that one person cannot fulfill all your emotional needs Β  No matter how hard they try, it’s not always possible. But at the same time, there has to be something to stay back in a relationship. If most of your emotional needs are being ignored/trampled upon, it’s time to move away.
  2. Just because you’ve spent years with a person, doesn’t mean it will work out Insistence that it SHOULD work has never worked! I know that it sometimes feels like a colossal waste of time and energy to run behind something that was never meant to be. But trust this: Walking away is cutting your losses in some cases. Don’t spend yourself completely in the hope of a miracle. Miracles happen because of our beliefs, not insistence.
  3. You’re responsible for how you handle situationsΒ  I know this is a cliche! In fact when going through a break-up, I always want to punch that friend who throws this line at me. But fortunately it’s true! I just realized why it’s tough for us to let go. We want this person to miss us. You know what that actually means? That we want to be valued. Let’s admit that it’s initially difficult to imagine this love of our life being happy with someone else. You know why? It’s because we want to be loved as well. For all the feelings that come up in the way of letting a relationship go, there’s an underlying reason for it. It’s hardly about the object of affection. It’s about YOU. You want to be cherished and the sudden vacuum that this person’s departure creates is a little unsettling. Do you know why we feel jealous? It’s because we want attention. The only difference is that the attention, love, affection etc that one needs is now going to come from someone else in the future and not THIS ONE person around whom our life was revolving till a few days back. Hang in there!
  4. Fortify yourselfΒ  When the mind refuses to work, work your body. Do a couple of squats. Move. If you want the best, you have to be your best. You cannot expect a sexy lingerie model to think you’re hot if you haven’t worked on getting rid of your belly gut. Ain’t happening! I’m not being shallow, this is just to draw a point. There’s an unmistakable charm and air of effortless confidence about a man or woman who’s self-made. BE IT! Build your fortune- that”ll be a story that people would want to listen to. Build your body- people will respect you and ask you for advice. Build your personality- people will ask you what you do differently! Don’t be that person who passively waits for the right person to come along. Invest time in yourself to be the right person who everybody’s looking for. Start today!
  5. It’s a processΒ No matter how hard you try, it’s not going to be over in a day. The mind goes through it’s own motions-sometimes wildly so. When you can’t take it anymore, it’s okay to cry. And no, you’re not bipolar if you’re laughing at a typical “people falling” videos on YouTube. Clench your teeth and go through it. It gets better. But it takes its time. Don’t rush it. One thing that helped me was changing my cologne. I went out and bought myself a new Ferragamo cologne when I was going through the letting go process. It helps dissociate at least one sense organ from your past. And it is said that the sense of smell is the most strongly associated with memories. If everything seems impossible, try this step today.

Be proud of yourself even to think that you want to let go and let things be as they are. Be proud of yourself to think that you deserve dignity and you’re willing to give yourself that. Be proud that you value your precious life. You’re already special. All this pain that you’re currently going through, will serve as inspiration for someone else. I have gone through more break-ups than I count on one hand(no kidding) and if I can get up again and look forward to the future, so can you! πŸ˜€

universe

I always always know when something amazing is about to happen. It sounds a bit strange since we’re only used to hearing how we know beforehand when something terrible is about to happen. But really, I always know about wonderful news. It may be because I do something very specific and ritualistic everytime I feel like I am stuck in a place or emotion where I’d rather NOT be. In that sense, yesterday was the last straw. I wasted my whole day sulking and terrifying myself about various aspects about my seemingly difficult life. I felt utter hopelessness in people and humanity, listless about love and relationships, insecure about my talents, afraid of what all these thoughts would do to my health. It was a terrible day which I had brought upon myself and I couldn’t get out of it. But then I got up from the bed in a swift motion and shouted “ENOUGH” at my innocent bedroom walls. I don’t know what magic that word ‘enough’ had or perhaps physically moving into a standing posture did it, but something in me changed. It was like a warrior woke up from his slumber. It was then that I decided to take things into my own hands and change whatever was gnawing into my heart. I closed the blinds, put on lights and music and started talking to myself about what was bothering me. I was asking myself questions out loud, “So now what are you going to do about it?!” and then I would answer myself, “I know that the only effective way is to do things within my control and let go of the rest. But it’s hard. Very hard.” Then consoled myself, “I know. I of all people know that it is hard. But how long can you waste time like this? You have things to do, wonderful things to achieve! Go after them now.”

I started feeling better. It was like someone with my highest good and utmost love in mind was talking directly to me, wanting to help me out of this deep hole that I’d dug myself. And then something miraculous happened. I started laughing. Alone. Laughing at the things that were hurting me, holding me down! I mean LAUGHING! It was funny and a bit scary because I really thought I was losing my mind. Then I laughed and cried a little simultaneously and then…BOOM! Clarity dawned.

I sat down and wrote in my book where I usually pen down poetry and compositions. I wrote this:”I have decided that I have finished sulking. That’s the good news. There’s no bad news. From now on slowly and steadily I will start renewing my life, start rethinking goals and work toward them. Fitness, music, wealth, money, love, my philosophy…everything anew. I knew I would be tired of crying very soon.”

And the Universe responded in less than ten minutes with an amazing opportunity for my career! Then in the morning I got a call for work which is to be done tomorrow. The Universe wants to pay me in cash and kind! And this is how I know when something awesome is about to happen to me. Every time I have taken even a small step in the right direction, the Universe has responded with such signs to tell me that I am heading the correct way. Every single time.

I recommend the self-induced laughter therapy very strongly. Whatever it is that will make one feel even a little better is good enough! It feels crazy at first. But hey, it’s not as bat-shit crazy like sulking! So, go for it!

Wishlist 2013

These are wishes, not horses; aptly so.Β  This is what I expect from life in 2013:

  1. More wealth
  2. More health
  3. More conversations
  4. More memories
  5. More friends
  6. More travel
  7. More music
  8. More dreams
  9. More heart
  10. More honesty
  11. More integrity
  12. More generosity
  13. More togetherness
  14. More courage
  15. More companionship
  16. More meaning
  17. More laughter
  18. More dance
  19. More hand-holding
  20. More hugs
  21. More liberty
  22. More freedom
  23. More independence
  24. More offline
  25. More sunrises
  26. More mountains
  27. More lakes
  28. More trees
  29. More beauty
  30. More growth
  31. More learning
  32. More knowledge
  33. More compositions
  34. More poetry
  35. More satisfaction
  36. More bliss
  37. More blessings
  38. More selflessness
  39. More moments
  40. More communication
  41. More deliciousness
  42. More fragrance
  43. More security
  44. More fun
  45. More muscle
  46. More inspiration
  47. More anticipation
  48. More surprises
  49. More room
  50. More LOVE!

Creating is beautiful!

So! Apparently I am a carpenter now. One fine morning I realised that I was not feeling all that fine. I knew that I really wanted to distract myself constructively from some very bothersome thoughts. I drew up my options and one of them was this: buying an electric drill. As usual I put that on the backburner and went about doing things I had procrastinated for long: getting my car-insurance renewed etc. And as luck would have it, the car insurance dude’s office was right beside a nice-looking hardware store. I went inside and five minutes later I was the owner of this:

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And after putting up a few wall-frames, key hangers and mirrors on the wall I felt I was ready to make bigger things happen. So I dismantled a huge entertainment unit last night, pulled out plywood that would make good shelves etc. and started to work. I needed a bedside table. I found these:

IMG_2749

And soon(after 2 hours) it was done! Check it out:

IMG_2752

Pretty neat forΒ  a totally untrained carpenter, eh? I think so too!

I am incredibly happy with myself right now. And I think that’s all that matters anyway. I can’t thank the Universe enough for blessing me with unbounded creativity!

Time to go out and buy some cute things to keep on my side-table πŸ˜€

I have finally decided what my 3rd 30-day challenge is going to be.

For the next 30 days starting today, I will learn one new technique about Ableton Live 8 and fully know to apply it.

Ableton Live is a superb production/recording/performance music software and I know in my heart that I want to master it. But like many other things, I knew I was avoiding doing it because of self-limiting beliefs. Since I have been a guitarist and a singer-songwriter, I have thought myself more capable of working with an “acoustic heart” and that electronic music wouldn’t come naturally to me. Hence I want to see what gains in knowledge happen at the end of 30 days πŸ™‚

So again, like with the principles of fitness everything happens incrementally and so will this; one step at a time.

At the onset, I apologize for my extended absence from blogging daily. Good news is that my 30-day challenge was successfully completed. Now working out is a habit and I can safely say that I can’t live without it πŸ™‚

There were a couple of unexpected hurdles along the way to the 30 days. For one, I was hit by a massive common cold attack that took some time to recover. But what I did during the time when I couldn’t get my body to exercise was, I ate healthy. And very very consciously.

I can already see changes in my body and I am very inspired because of that! Also, I took swimming classes. I have only attended 2 till now. But considering that I am awfully scared of swimming pools, this was a giant step for me. So hoping to continue that without making excuses!

Now I understand why they say that working out can change your life! There are so many hidden lessons in this whole process of working out towards fitness. Since the changes in the body happen so incrementally, you know for sure that one week of exercise is not going to get you to your desired goal. Hence patience becomes necessary. Eating the elephant piece by piece comes next. So planning follows. Sore muscles are evidence of changes taking place inside the body even if you can’t see it on the surface as yet. Faith in the goal, no matter how impossible, comes automatically. Also, personally I noticed that I wouldn’t push my body enough when I worked out earlier. But now I am driven more because I know I am making lifestyle changes, painstakingly planning my meals, avoiding falling to temptation to eat pizza etc. And I eat more consciously because I know that I am really giving each work out my 100%. So this diet and exercise motivation is now feeding off each other, which is great!

What I mean is, that exercise has now made it clear to me that with every goal in life, it has to be done in a similar way: one piece at a time, with faith, patience and confidence that it’s going to happen even if I can’t see “how” just as yet. I think, if I HAD to choose a religion, it would be Fitness πŸ˜€ Because it’s makes you an awesome person!

Now I am really feeling lost without a 30-day challenge. Any ideas on what it should be?

 

Day 2 Morning Run

Woohooo!!! I woke up at 5.40 AM <insert *APPLAUSE*>, read for a while while sipping chai and was out of the house at 6.35 AM while chewing on 3 almonds on my way.

Today I clocked 2KM which I think is awesome for just the second day. Let’s wait and see what my shins think. Ironically I kept wishing I was lighter so that I could run better!

The morning run provides such specimen that are totally unavailable on the evening run. For instance, plenty of humans were walking with their arms rotating in a propellor-like motion; as if they were trying to take off from the ground! Anyway I felt relatively smarter than ALL of them since I was only trying to run, not fly.

Coming up next, a review of my new running shoes from Nike. Stay tuned!

30 day challenge no. 2

I was looking for some ideas to start my next 30-day challenge after the resounding success of my first one which was to stay off Twitter. I read a list of ideas but none of them were inspiring enough. So I have decided to walk for 30 mins daily for the next 30 days. I have no excuses to not do it. I have bought myself excellent running shoes. And that’s it. Walking anyway doesn’t need any other equipment other than an iron will!

So, there. I’ve declared it. Come hell or high water, I shall walk! \m/

What’s up

Well pretty much everything is looking up! And just when I think that things couldn’t get any better, they DO!

Even though my resolve of writing a blog-post daily lost steam somewhere after the 4th day, I have managed to achieve a LOT else! A personal victory has been being off Twitter for 30 days straight. It’s especially important to me because I was heavily addicted to Twitter to the point of being worried about myself.

Then in this 30-day challenge I released my debut album to a very good reception! I got promoted with my album cover on one of the biggest international apparel and footwear brands’ official page too! I hadn’t planned for all this in detail. But I guess this is my biggest lesson: I made space in my life for the things that are important to me and the Universe paid back with such rich dividends.

What I am currently experiencing is INVINCIBILITY and a feeling of being un-hurtable. It’s a pretty awesome feeling also because it’s sustained over many days πŸ™‚

Of course there are many personal challenges in front of my eyes right now but I know that one very important thing is off my bucket-list, which is my music album. You can get a sneak preview over here πŸ˜€