One step at a time

It was 10 pm on the 1st of April. I was walking towards my hostel alone. Suddenly, I heard a woman screaming. For a few moments, I froze and was scared to death. But then, soon I realized it was my phone ringing and there on the screen flashed ‘Bhootni’ calling. Somewhere at the back of my mind, I knew this wasn’t real, but the stakes were too high and I wasn’t ready to die. So reflexively, I silenced my phone and ran like I had never run before. As I neared my hostel and few mortal beings came to sight, I slowed down and taking deep breaths started to walk. The phone rang again and this time I was pumped with courage, as I knew it in my heart that with people around ‘Bhootni’ could do me no harm. I answered and heard a familiar voice on the other side. It was my classmate calling to inform me that I got selected for the job interview we had the other day. Of course, I didn’t believe her then. I wasn’t gonna fall for two back-to-back pranks on the same night. The next day, after I twice confirmed that indeed I did get the job – I was all HAPPY, EAGER, EXCITED and CURIOUS. I’m sure you can understand how I felt. The naïve, innocent feeling of happiness when securing your first job, and how the happiness is doubled when it’s your apparent dream job.

This lasted for a while but started to wear off soon after work began. Few months down the line still putting up the happy face but shook from within. Doubts started to creep inside the mind. Seriously? No one told me this. Am I in the right place? Was this really in the job description? And then I remembered how I got this job in the first place. A screaming woman and Bhootni calling,  maybe that was a sign I should not have ignored. Well, I still had all those positive emotions but they got toned down a bit.

But then you know I got any answers to the many questions running through my mind and so I moved on. Kept on doing what I was supposed to. Waking up, going to work, repeating the cycle. Reminding myself that I had landed a wonderful opportunity and should be grateful for it. Good money, beautiful city, rich learnings, etc. You know rationalizing everything.

Eventually, I started making excuses. I actually had my favourites that I would employ over and over again. But making excuses didn’t change my situation. I was simply refusing to take responsibility for my own life and how it was turning out. The regular ones were I’m overworked, I’m underworked, too many people work here, my manager sucks/ doesn’t leave me alone/ won’t help me, I don’t have time for anything, prices are too high, clients won’t call me back, people lie, I need a vacation, I should have done my own thing, I’m tired, I’m sick, I’m bored, etc. etc. I had to really reach deep into the recess of my mind to recall all the complaining I used to do. How many of these have you used? You should go back and circle every statement you’ve ever heard come out of your mind. It was pretty later I realized that nothing happens to you, it happens because of you. There were times I was furious, even more than the Hulk. I blamed everyone else for my irritation, frustration, etc. it was much later that I realized and accepted the fact that nothing happens to you, things happen because of you.

Late on I even got tired of frowning also all the time. So I started sulking. Living from weekend to weekend. Drinking more, smoking more, eating junk. Avoiding friends and family. Drained of all energy. I even started going for Bollywood movies on a regular basis. And so it happened that one Friday I was watching Houseful 3 in the mall. By the middle of the movie, I had my moment of realization. I realized I have reached the low point of my life. I was actually enjoying a movie I would normally never watch. This is what has become of me. This might be sounding so silly to you guys but it’s not just love, but other things too that happen in mysterious ways.

So what do I do? Firstly, I stopped taking everything so seriously. Well, I’m not the only one in the world with problems, right? Every problem is universal in some way or the other. We are all taught to be reasonable and logical. Being unreasonable requires that you act without rational consideration and not in accordance with practical realities. So why not be unreasonable? I stopped giving a damn! And I left my job in the process.

The biggest reason we feel scarred from within is that we don’t know what we want out of life. What do we love to do? Ninety-seven percent of the people among the 7.6 billion currently occupying the earth do not know what they actually want to do. That’s a lot of people. After spending quite a while contemplating, stressing, whining I knew it was time to accept. It’s okay not to know. It’s okay not to have a plan laid out for you. I started little by little. Over the last few months, I discovered many new things about myself. I realized I like photography, so I clicked beautiful pictures (well, I think they are beautiful) and posted on Instagram and saw a whole new world out there. I travelled a lot and realized this is something I like too. I compiled my travel stories and started posting on my blog. Then I started writing articles and poems as well and realized I liked blogging too. I joined Toastmasters and realized how nervous I was speaking in public so I started working on that too. I became VP PR of the club and every week I am tasked with making posters and promoting across various platforms and I realized I liked making posters too. Recently I took out my oil colours shoved back in the cupboard and started making a canvas painting after 6 years and realized how much I was in love with painting too. I started reading books again which I had completely abandoned while I was working. I learnt cooking from my mom and a few weeks earlier my friend Anjali taught me to make the world’s best Veg Manchurian.

So while other people told me I made a grave mistake by leaving my job, I respectfully disagreed. Because I would never have read more, painted more, travelled more or blogged at all if I hadn’t had the courage to make that one big decision in my life. I am in no way suggesting that anyone should quit their jobs. I am simply saying that you might not know definitely the goal of your life but you can always take one step at a time.


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Image Courtesy: Google Images

10 Comments Add yours

  1. Very inspiring post today! I’ve been binge-reading WordPress blogs and I am so glad I came upon this writing. Brave and honest, great writing technique. I love it. I hope you could also try to follow my blog page, if you don’t mind. He he. Cheers! 😊👏

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Beautiful and gripping

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Neha Sakuja says:

      Thank you. Much appreciated 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Anjali Roy says:

    Awesome

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Nirant Gurav says:

    Very inspiring & nicely arranged too👏✔️💯

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Neha Sakuja says:

      Thank you Nirant! Much appreciated!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Nirant Gurav says:

        Pleasure always 😉🎀

        Like

  5. A great story Neha! It’s amazing how deep down, we often know what we need to do to be happy. But because that goes against what is considered to be ‘common sense’ we deny our feelings, and so end up being miserable.

    Liked by 1 person

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