Dead Man Walking?


image by Anand HS

Do you have a life outside your profession? If no, then go get a life! I find that for most people (in fact for the majority) their *ONLY* identity is their JOB! Take away their jobs from them and they are floating nobodys. Pretty much like the penis to a male – take it away and you have destroyed his masculinity – the very essence of being a Man! (Well I could not think of a more ‘full of punch’ analogy – if anyone of you comes up with one, then do leave a comment.)
The majority of the workforce (as of this writing, my focus is on Indian workforce!) does not have a life outside office! They live to work – wake up in the morning; come to work; return home in the evening; go to sleep! And then do the same over and over again the whole week, unenthusiastically and with total indifference. During this ordeal they eagerly wait for that magical panacea – ‘THE WEEKEND’ and when it does come around, most just sleep it away! It is an extremely pitiable condition.
I have tried to analyze why most people are the way they are. Let us accept this – a culture, we are lethargic. There is an ‘all pervading’ *chalta hai* attitude which has eaten away the vibrancy of people in general. It is my strong belief and recommendation that if you want to have zest and zeal in your life, then you need to cultivate, atleast TWO areas of interest, which are COMPLETELY UNRELATED to your professional work. If two sounds too ambitious, then start out with one. But ensure that the one area of interest does not take you anywhere close to your work. I keep insisting on this “unrelated to work” deal because, most people find the work they do, absolutely boring. And that boredom is so deep rooted that it has killed all interest in trying something new!
Take a quick quiz. If you find yourself answering yes to any of these then It’s about time to take control of your life (did you read that?? “take control of YOUR life” – unfortunately most of us have forgotten all about it – in fact as I write this, I am reminded of the voice over in the Tata Safari TV Commercial; “Slavery is not dead, we have just stopped recognizing it.”):
  • Do you feel that your work week is a drag?
  • Do you frequently get the ‘nothing can be done’ feeling, about most things?
  • Do you think you have a ‘purposeless’ existence?
  • Have you given up exercise because you could not keep up with the routine?
  • You just don’t know what to do on a weekend off?
  • Do you have ready-made excuses if someone suggests, you need to get organized/start working out/etc.,etc.,etc.
In fact, did you ever actually realize, that “NOBODY” is stopping you from doing what you want.

Let me share a personal experience here. I have been working out since 1992. But after I began my professional life, there have been periods where I have slacked off and then got back (sometimes with a degree of difficulty too). Recently I had slacked off again and was finding it difficult to get back in to the routine. But I was determined and got into a habit. Here’s what I did – Click Here To Read More:
1. I have begun to keep a weekly log of the activities which I WANT to do (i.e. Workout; Work on my Studies; Wash the Car, etc.) and put one check mark on each day that I do the activity and a cross for the day I do not. The goal is to eventually (over a period of 4-5 weeks), reduce the cross marks and have more check marks on that sheet of paper.
2. I wake up every day at 5:00 AM (my wife lovingly asks me – ‘तुम आदमी हो, या भूत?’ {are you human or a ghost?}); make a cup of hot tea for myself, use the bathroom and then by 5:35, I am ready for my morning jog (on the days that I dont go for jogging, I do some strength training workouts at home. Read More about my workout); I am back by 6:05 AM, help myself to another cup of tea and then get ready to get to work.
3. I am in the profession of IT-Support, so although I cannot ‘set-aside’ time at my office, in the strictest sense, I usually try to do so. And here’s my verdict – Mornings are the best times for the seriously-brainy stuff and post lunch is best suited for the routine type of work. I usually do my browsing blogs and other interesting sites, which I share with my mailing list, around noon or just after lunch. And yes, here’s an interesting tip: I don’t browse the WORLD-WIDE-WEB at large! I use a feed reader. Most good sites have feeds, which can be accessed via a reader such as the Google Reader. This way, you don’t have to visit the sites again and again. The Reader is like a world wide inbox of websites. Whenever there is new content on one of the sites, that you have subscribed, it shows up in the reader.
The above are small little changes to lifestyle but they have definitely left me with a good feeling about the way I am spending my life.

I would love to know if you have similar experiences to share. Maybe a new perspective.

And of course, like always, both bouquets and brickbats are welcome!

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Suresh GP says:

    Dear Anand,

    An other Interesting blog that drives me crazy…wondering..why this happens…

    I bet most of the so called Professionals will be interested in this converation and I am not an exception.

    The first and foremost question I ask myself is

    What do you expect from Life?

    Work is just one component but the Sweet Little Life has been embedded with different components/flavours/dimensions which only “YOU” could identify/realize and make it happen

    Second Question:

    Are we clear that Being Busy does not mean productive..Most of the times we have been conditioned to be busy that we cannot imagine being quite/still even for a minute without doing anything….

    Third Question:

    Do you have friends/groups/fraternity who have different views/thoughts/ideas but have mutual respect and agree to disagree in opinion?

    Answering the three questions above without any compulsion,candidly has helped me enjoy the sweet little things the wonderful Life could bring everyday…

    Last but not the least, 15 minutes of reflection quietly gives a deep meaning of the lifestyle/priorities/goals to maintain the necessary Work -Life Balance…

    I have just brought some thoughts to it… I intend to nurture the wonderful thoughts and meaninful insights to live life to the fullest…

    Thanks Anand>>> For the Instigating thought… Would look to your space more…

    “If you could create a difference to the quality of people`s life you have lived a life worth living far…..”

    Cheers

  2. Maayaavi says:

    Anand…..

    Identity ek MAAYA hai…its inside US ;-)))

    I believe a MAN is more than his job …his identity is not limited to his job / activites / hobbies / PENIS…in-fact at some places PEN-IS mightier than sword ;-)))

    Once you start labeling you are putting a boundary ….so….MAN would be a sum of his consciouness and that his personality is fluid !!!

    I agree with each word about routine / monotonous / prof life. But per my observation …many ppl get so comfortable in routine life that they gain a false sense of security in doing same things over and over and thinking venturing into new things is like shooting oneself in foot !!!

    Finally , LIFE is what you make of IT …..its an individual PROPOSITION….

    As a man thinketh in his heart …so is HE !!!

    Cheers
    Maayaavi !

  3. Anand says:

    Thanks A ton Suresh/Maayavi.

    Your comments are helping in bring out newer dimensions to the initial thought that I put forth.

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