The Farce that was #MeToo

And so the farce of #MeToo ended in a whimper. And we can be feminists about this and say , ‘well at least stories were told.’.. but to be realists- what good did that do any way?!

Stories were told, sordid details shared and every newspaper (even the serious ones) became gossip rags proudly sharing salacious details. We had news reports dissecting the who said what’s and when stuff happened and companies , film houses and advertising agencies proudly denouncing men who were caught up for their lecherous moves and unforgivable behaviour towards women.

We enjoyed the headlines we made by denouncing the creeps and we enjoyed the ‘stand that we took’ and the praise it seemed to garner us. We became proud supporting our women and we assured them that this would never ever be tolerated again.

And then overnight, we forgot it. It became inconvenient when the headlines changed and politics and other world issues took centre stage, It became a non-issue when we weren’t being applauded for just being a non lecherous creepy human being. It just became unimportant again.

And the creeps went back to work. Some were never even fired or let go of. It seems like it was difficult to expect a higher standard of human decency from people. Cases were dropped because creeps filed counter cases with more goons threatening the victim and she faced even more harassment. It was bad enough to be tabloid news fodder but to be openly shamed on social media and to have your case being discussed, distorted and destroyed by people who didn’t even know you was something the victims dealt with because for the first time they felt they had a voice and that even with all the noise, the people, the right people cared and were listening.

But then it hit home truly, when support was withdrawn; when law enforcers chose to humiliate rather than help and when quite literally their personal story became yesterday’s garbage.

I guess asking for change might have been too much. But may be we could have done more than just completely turn away from them. I guess it doesn’t mean anything unless it happens to you.

But when it does will anyone support you?

Trust me- after this – I wouldn’t ask you to hold your breath.

I knew that we were becoming shallow. I knew that women and women’s rights in India were never a priority but right now I have to say ,I am well and truly disappointed.

I guess #MeToo, your #TimesUp đŸ˜¦

P.s.(Palat says)-: We need to be better. Not just because we owe it to humanity but because we owe it to ourselves.

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The Exhaustion of Being

justbreathe

 

So over a dinner with friends the other evening, it seemed like everyone was suffering the same malady… ‘I’m exhausted!’… ‘Done by 9!’….’Cant’t get out! Don’t even want to!’

The problem, we realised was not age… (despite the snickering yawns) or our jobs even…. it was just mental fatigue and the aversion to just do anything after the very long days we were all working.

A movie, a dinner, friends… were just more work… no fun!

When did ‘stress’ replace the word ‘life’?

When did ‘monday blues’ become ‘everyday woes’?

Between traveling in the city, impossible deadlines and the non-stop desire to keep moving life just became one long never ending day.

Stop. Sleep. Breathe. The world won’t fall off its axis without you.

I had a great night’s sleep last night and woke up to a perfectly brilliant morning where nothing was more or less stressful then the night before… The world hadn’t stop turning and life was a little easier thanks to the fact that I was in better humour!

 

 

A Little Respect!

We’re pushed around. We’re passed over. We change who we are, change what we want to be. And we blame everyone around us for the situations we are in. Bad marriages, bad jobs, bad family lives…

Take a second. Why do we allow ourselves to be bullied? When people disrespect us or our time or our wants, why do we gloss over it? Why do we pretend it doesn’t matter? Why do we make excuses for them? ‘They meant to be here,’ or ‘ You know so and so… he’s always late’… or ‘It doesn’t matter, it’s not a big deal!’

How is respect not a big deal? How is self respect NOT a big deal!

You DON’T NEED to be pushed around. You DON’T NEED to CHANGE if YOU DON’T WANT TO. And you DON’T NEED to be STOOD UP.

Take a stance. People won’t like you less if you tell them that you won’t be pushed around/ won’t wait around for them incessantly / won’t allow to be glossed over for a promotion again- IN FACT they’ll respect you more! And more importantly you’ll respect you more

I’m not saying you shouldn’t change for the person you love or allow yourself to be pushed around by your kids or your friends– but the call should be YOURS and you should NEVER be in ANY RELATIONSHIP where there is NO RESPECT.

Respect is the founding stone for any good, solid and strong relationship. Be with a woman/ man you respect and who respects you back. Don’t be pushed around/ bullied / made to feel inferior. Don’t pretend it doesn’t matter. Don’t be bullied. And don’t make excuses.

And as you walk away from the people who don’t respect you… watch how you automatically attract those that will đŸ™‚

 

No time? Why?

‘ I have no time,’ a constant complaint from all of us.

‘I can’t believe where the day /week/ month / year went!’

It went. And you were there. But you weren’t actually present. We’re always so busy. But busy achieving what? We spend less time with family and friends. We are divided between duties at office. We don’t even focus when we’re driving…we’re too busy returning  or making calls.

With all this ‘work’ we are doing why is the only result exhaustion and unfulfillment ? Because we’re never actually concentrating on the moment….we are each too busy thinking about the moments that just passed or the moments ahead and we’re never actually focusing on the moment we’re in.

We’re all born different – to different strata, in different countries, with different economic and social backgrounds… but time is the one thing that unites us. We all get the same amount of time in a day and it’s what we do with it that can change our lives. We have the same time to work, to relax, to fall in love, to dream, to work, to live,to stress, to worry. Time is constant and time is changing and that is the one common thread that binds us all.

Instead of running to keep up with time… let’s give it a little more respect.

  1. Schedule your day. It’s not about starting at 9 am or 9:30 am… it’ about what you have to do. Prioritise. Finish. And then leave. Don’t wait incessantly to check on facebook or wait because society/boss dictates you must wait till 7/8 at work. Work should be judged by how much you do in the day not by how long you spend eating/ tweeting/faffing at your desk. If we become a more goal/result oriented work culture as opposed to a time oriented work culture- we’ll achieve more. Work till you finish….. 4 p.m. or 10 p.m. Schedule your day well and FINISH MORE.
  2. Plan your time with family. Phone’s on silent., coffee breaks, take up a sport…. time with family is precious. You will never get it back again.
  3. Take the time to relax and don’t judge yourself. If you need an hour break every day….TAKE IT! Enjoy yourself. you’ll end up charged and ready to take on the world again…else you’ll just end up burnt out.
  4. Take a few minutes every day to do nothing. In Palo Alto in the tech companies there were meditation rooms, sleep rooms and quick break rooms…sometimes you need about 5/10 minutes every 3 hours or so to do…NOTHING.
  5. When you are driving just drive. When you are watching a movie, watch it and when you are sundaying- relax. Don’t do 3 things at one time…it’s not multitasking…it’s not even single tasking…no task is completed well and nothing is achieved and you usually have to start all over again.

Make every second count. Don’t rush thru life or rush thru your day. We each have enough time… let’s just take it!

INNW

 

Fear ≠ Change

Fear-: to be afraid or to be apprehensive

When we are little we fear almost nothing. We find fire funny. We play with strays. We roll in the mud. We twist our parents ( big and fearful to others) around our little , tiny fingers and we don’t know defeat. We ask like we deserve something and we expect good things to happen to us- cos we are good, little people! And then as the years go by- we fear the ghosts under our bed, the shadows in a lane, the teacher who always shouts, the bully who hits us and fear takes over. We understand fear and we avoid confrontation because we are fearful of the result. And then later we start fearing leaving home, changing school, changing city, changing boyfriend, changing job and suddenly we equate fear with change!

There is no point fearing change because if there is any constant it is this- CHANGE IS CONSTANT and if you fear change then FEAR WILL BE CONSTANT TOO!

Every few years, whether it is my Geminian madness or my own crazy ambition- I have changed. From movies, to starting a company, to starting two companies, to teaching,to producing, to directing and now to expanding my own company.

Balancing Act Productions

Yes, Balancing Act Productions is expanding. From doing theatre and small amounts of Corporate events and workshops we will now take on more corporate work, off-sites, presentations, workshops, launches, opening, weddings, birthdays and events! I love events and I love the technical precision with which I’ve always run mine and I’d like to do more, plan to do more…WILL DO MORE!

A new team is setting up, new clients will be met…life will change and it’s terrifying !

But I’m going to equate fear with excitement and with the promise of starting something amazing… so wish me luck as I embark on yet another journey!

2013- start something new! (Check!)

P.s.-: Balancing Act Productions is expanding our Event management section and we are HIRING! Email info@balancingactproductions.com NOW!

26/11- Moving forward

I had written another post for today and was about to post it when I felt i should write about something that’s been so important to me for the last 4 years.

4 years ago today our city was besieged by terror attacks and for the first time in my life-I was scared, unsure of tomorrow and afraid to step outside. I didn’t sleep for days and when I did, I dreamt of blood, gore, screaming and fear. With the help of my friend Mr. Sivanandan and my encouraging husband – I set about to interview survivors and their families. I needed to find something positive from all the death,destruction and sorrow of that mindless massacre.

And every year , we’ve been going to different continents and telling people about our stories, our survivors, our heroes-names you’ve never heard of, people you’d pass by on the street but people who showed exemplary courage in the face of senseless rage and irrational hate and survived those 48 hours. Every year I’ve re-interviewed a few, re-assessed where they are and asked them how they feel and kept in touch. And telling the stories made a difference- not just to those we told it to…but to each one of us and giving the proceeds away made us feel that we were in some way, able to help contribute to a change.

Men and women died that night protecting one another. People survived using skills they didn’t know they had, calling on bravery they didn’t know they possessed. And we went on. We should have learnt from them. We can still learn.

Instead of inculcating fear, we must learn to live- not to just survive and go but to understand and to appreciate the value of life- yours and the people around you. We must focus on the moment and have faith in ourselves and in others because help can come from the most unexpected sources and it’s never hard to just do good and be nice.

We were all chosen to survive because of those who gave up their lives instead. But life is about making positive changes and trying to make your life count and the only way we can do that is making every moment of our lives make a difference – to ourselves, to those around us.

It’s 26/11 again now…and it’s four years later. Ask yourself- Have you made a change? If you haven’t… it’s not too late…! Next year- same time- I’ll check in!

26/11- Never Forget!

Take a Chance on Change!

To start over…something must end. To say hello… sometimes we have to say goodbye.To laugh again…sometimes we need to have cried!

Divya Palat 

It’s so hard when things are over when we just keep holding on! I realised this when I produced my first set of shows and the run was complete and as everyone was about to go on stage , I was bawling in the bathroom not willing to let go. Since then ,it’s been 10 years and it’s still hard; but the public display of tears has significantly reduced and I’m learning to let go of incredible shows, amazing experiences and new found family to make way for even more incredible moments!

A lot of my girl friends are the same with relationships. Trapped with bad boyfriends, terrible husbands, abusive relationships- they aren’t even having a great time- but they’re scared of letting go- what if there’s nothing amazing in store for them next? What if this is as good as it gets? A friend of mine stayed with his cheating boy friend just because she was too afraid to actually go out and find someone again. “It’s too hard,” she told me ..”to start over!”

But even if we’re unwilling to change, scared to let go and holding on with all we’ve got- Life is way faster, smarter and trickier than all of us! Sometimes despite all our ‘clingy’ efforts , we’re going to have to change, have to let go, have to start over! And maybe the new is scary but may be it’s what we needed all along.

A perfect planner, I hated to lose control till I got sick and then paralysed and then suddenly had to allow nurses, doctors and family control of my choices, my life, my body! Suddenly in a moment, all that I was clinging to- my ridiculous plans, my naive thoughts on my career progress and my life ambitions had to be re-thought, re assessed and restarted overnight! And when you stop fearing the future and embrace the change then suddenly Life is an adventure and you can be part of an incredible journey. Had I resisted change, Balancing Act Productions (my company) would not be in it’s tenth year , I would not be married to my soulmate and best friend, and I’d never have walked again.

Sometimes Change makes all the right choices you were just too scared to make! Sometimes Change gets it right!

Trust!