Why does it Hurt so bad?

So I’ve realised it takes a village to build you up and make you feel confident but it’s often just the one person that can bring that confidence crashing down! And that’s just sad…

What the tens, hundreds or millions say about you can be shattered by one thoughtless comment or one mean remark. It’s like that little devil inside of us barely needs a drop of water to take on a monstrous form and take us over completely.

And that’s why the trolls succeed so much. I used to visit a client ever so often and despite me being at my best; I’d watch how every compliment would be followed by a quick jibe, a passing thoughtless remark or just something plain mean. I noticed it a few times but I think it really came to a head when my team asked me what was wrong with them? I honestly didn’t know. Every time they made a comment it hurt but I tried to push it aside as much as I could and eventually knew when the comment would come , so played a song in my head to dull their words!

But then the husband came up with an insightful reason (no I wasn’t bribed to compliment him :)) they did this.He said that often people chose to use hurtful words to cover up what was happening in their lives. When they chose to criticise how I looked or that I spoke with an accent- it was often a reflection of them not being happy with what they looked like or how they spoke. And when I started really listening to what they were saying I saw all their deep rooted personal issues- marriage problems, body image issues, blatant racism and insecurities. And now I have realised that perhaps that’s the way to deal with trolls.

Everyone is on a journey. When they lash out, it’s more about what’s happening with them not with you. And when you re-teach yourself to think like that the hurt is less and you too are equally careful about how you speak.

P.s. (Palat says)-: Every person I meet I try and learn something from… even the worst people you meet have something they can teach you. Learn.

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The Relationship Saga

And in a world more connected than ever, most people find themselves more disconnected than they have ever been. We can connect on WhatsApp, Social media, the phone- all the time and yet in this fast paced world though we’re always seeming to be connected we’re often more alone than we have ever been.

This was the discussion a girl friend of mine and I had for more than a few hours this week. And it wasn’t even the first time I had heard this complaint. It was far too often, from far too many people for this to be a coincidence.

Connection requires work. Connection requires commitment and Connection requires both parties to keep at it!

And when I felt the same way a few years ago.. I set out to make a Commitment Cheat Sheet… to help me keep and nurture relationships that meant something to me…

So here’s a peak-:

  1. Make a list of just the closest friends (CFs) you’d like to have in you life and make sure you call or meet them once every 2 weeks at least.
  2. Do Date night. Even if you’ve been with your husband for tons of years…date him, reconnect. The only thing constant is change- so both of you will keep changing. Get to know the new him.
  3. Be social. Get out at least once a week with one set of your CFs so you can do a face to face reconnect.
  4. Laugh more. Play games rather than watch TV. Connect, talk and have fun with your friends. TV is a wonderful medium for stories but real stories happen only when you actually participate in them. Be a part of your own life story not a spectator.
  5. Put a schedule together which forces you to challenge yourself to connect. Make it a routine, till it becomes a habit.
  6. Find common hobbies/ activities. I hate the morning walk… or actually hate getting up at 5 am… but the plus is I get a leisurely coffee chat with the uncrabby husband (he’s a morning sparrow, I am not) and a walk where we find tons of puppies and lots to chat about.
  7. Be present. Your CFs have something major happening in their life/ they aren’t well- check up, be present- care.
  8. Don’t look at your phone during dinners/ events. Respect the person/people you are with.
  9. Give yourself a break. All relationships change. Some change so much they become unrecognisable. Try as hard as you can, but remember sometime you need to let go. Reward yourself when you try. Don’t berate yourself.

Relationships are hard and connections even harder. In a world of a few billion- you just need a handful of connections but even those take work. Remember, it may look easy from watching a good relationship but both people work very hard with many off days to make that work. Instagram and Facebook stories are just that- stories. They are not reality.

P.s. (Palat says)-: At the end of the day, all the fame and money make for comfortable beds and homes but homes are only homes when you can fill them with people you love.

F.R.I.E.N.D.S

I was never good at making friends. As gregarious and out going that I seem, most of it is a facade and those who know me know I am actually quite conscious of how I am viewed, worried about being judged by you and fiercely private about my thoughts and fears. Trust doesn’t come easily to me.

I started working at 16 and then became even more wary of ‘friends.’ They became transactional relationships. FRIENDS was a great concept on TV but for me that was it- fictional and a comedy- something that could not truly exist..

And then I changed.

Over the last few years I have started seeing people as different versions of me- each flawed, insecure, with their own set of fears, but just trying like I am to make the best of each day. And as I started seeing people for more than their Facebook profile/ status – I learnt that people could become more than humans who wandered in an out of your life- they could in fact become friends.

Now I’d love to give myself full credit for this realisation but in the spirit of honesty I must credit the husband , ever so little, for looking at my many flaws and loving them. When he peeled the many onion layers I had protecting me, and showed me that flaws aren’t all bad… I realised I could do the same for others.

Of course every so often you get a rotten , smelly onion- but I guess that’s the risk you take when you try to connect.

And in a world where we have more Facebook and Insta connections than real friends, I think you owe it to yourself to look for actual connections. Hate someone, love someone- but have some emotion for them!

P.s.. (Palat says)-: Connect. Offline.

Life’s not fair

Life’s not fair- a complaint that plagues even the most optimistic of us. And you’re right. It’s the friend who you thought would pick up the phone when you needed them or the pitch that was stolen by the lazy incompetent colleague who pretended the idea was his or just being surrounded by sloth, carelessness and general apathy when you give all that you have for a person , an idea or a moment.

I have realised that you can’t control others and their attitude. All you can control is how you choose to deal with them. I have often been heartbroken when I care about someone- (friend or colleague) deeply and they let me down by not caring the same amount or believing in us the way I do. And now over the years I slowly am getting over it.

I have always been the one giving 100% to relationships – work or personal that I care about. But that too is my choice. Much like waves, some of the water stays and some it goes back- people often come in to our life for a reason. When the reason is fulfilled , most will go away. Those that you are left with are those that have more to give you and more to learn from you and those that leave have served their purpose and you theirs.

You can’t stop caring, turning up or giving your cent percent to life because every so often you will get the opportunity you’ve been dreaming of, meet the person you were destined to meet and live the life you absolutely deserve. The bumps on the way only make you realise how good the goods are and appreciate those moments so much more.

My grandfather always said life was full of ups and downs – how boring life would be if it were one straight line. Compare that to a heart monitor and you realise that he’s right… the ups and downs make the journey. Without that, using the same example, we’re quite literally dead !

P.s. (Palat says)-: Pitching season is the longest, toughest, hardest and most exhilarating season! On one hand Mondays are the best and most exciting – on the other TGIF!

Will you Be My Valentine?

I love love. I love being loved. I love the whole feeling of love and I love to love! If there’s one day that means the world to me – it’s Valentines Day!

Over the years I have heard the cynics say ‘well love can happen on any day.’ And here’s the thing I agree. But if it can happen on any day the why can’t it happen on Valentines Day too!

By that notion- each of us could celebrate the new year on any day and several religions do and yet December 31st is celebrated as the New Year’s Eve and we wish each other and party and enjoy the happiness that envelops us as the new year approaches!

So on Valentines , it’s cupcakes in the office and a few more for those I love. It’s flowers and more everywhere I look and I always try to have a few surprises for my embarrassed better (?) half. This year I had a serenader serenade the husband in the middle of the office, as he blushed a shot shade of pink! The serenader sang well. The pink looked perfect for the occasion !

And I get that one day isn’t enough to show you care or that this may be a Hallmark holiday but I think if I can make a lil more effort on one day it’s better than not making any effort at all or just sliding along by saying that we don’t need to show we care.

Life has to be full of moments and days like these allow you to think those moments through a little more.

In a world of hate, and I say this having read about the horrific , cowardly attack in Kashmir; is it so bad to try and fill others’ lives with love?

In a world of anger, stress, hunger and sadness- even if you don’t have your lobster-can’t you spread love to a person around you? A friend, a relative, a loved one, a colleague or just someone you feel needs it?

And if there’s one day that can glorify a powerful positive feeling like love- shouldn’t we all enjoy it!

If I were given my way- there’d be a Valentines Day every month!

P.s. (Palat says)-: A long week of pitching some incredible characters in beautiful stories …On wards to next week and let’s make Magic!

Don’t just Turn Up!

The last week was a medley of emotions for me… At first I had the Low- MS Lows are a little tough for me not because of Multiple sclerosis but because I find it difficult to get out of the funk. Add to that the miserable diet and crazy exercise routine continued. But what really got me is the fact that in life- most people just turned up for life and let it happen. They didn’t actually SHOW UP!

Now here’s the difference- turning up is what we do. We turn up to school, turn up to our job, turn up to parties or social engagements- but showing up- that’s totally different! Showing up is recognising you are there and going on and making a difference! It’s about making sure the day is better than when you came in… It’s about challenging yourself to do more, be more and really and truly enjoying and being present in the moment!

Sure, we can get through most of life on autopilot by just turning up. But who wants to go through moments, years and decades not having actually been or tried to have been the best version of themselves.

My chat at work was all about that- I have a team that I hope I can inspire, lead and learn from that I hope will all be able to look back at each day and feel that they made a difference or that they achieved something- anything. I hope that they enjoy each day for the uniqueness it brings and remember that every day brings opportunity and is a gift that they cannot get back—ever.

Once I started spring cleaning those who just were turning up as opposed to showing up- my mood changed cos you can’t allow the drifters to dictate your mood; you have to allow those that are present to. They deserve that and you deserve that too! The husband thinks that sometimes I expect too much from those in my life- but I believe that it’s my life and surely I can work to make it the best version of my life it can be! And so I will be there and present for this who are there and present for me.

We can’t ‘Groundhog Day’ our life. And to truly enjoy the every moment – surround yourself with people who also choose to be present- not just there but to be active and present in your life!

P.s. (Palat says)-:Don’t let people speed date your life- they must be present in your life and you in theirs. Don’t look at a day as something that must end- look at it as something you must be present for.

The Devil Inside

The Devil gets a bad rep from us all the time… whenever we are thinking of something bad to do we’re consistently blaming it on the red man on our shoulder with horns not realising that there is no red man on our shoulder… and that there voice goading us on is just our own!

That’s the thing with bad habits and broken resolutions… we can make as many excuses as we like but eventually it’s up to us to hold ourselves accountable for our own actions.

To make a change, any change, we have to start with being accountable to continue keeping on the path of change.

I have never been a 5 am girl. Late night work, late snacks, long evenings… that’s always been my thing. But in my effort to get fitter, feel better over the last 6 months it’s been a 5 am wake up call and 2 hrs of exercise.

Needless to say there have been so many excuses not to wake up and so many complaints from my joints, my body and my brain. But there’s been just one excuse to get up- better health= better me!

A friend called up in December and rued… every night had been long nights- he was just not feeling fit any more! Can’t run. Just so exhausted – he needed a drink every night to crash. Didn’t I? It had been a hectic few months for me and excuses to stop my routine and pretend that giving in to bad habits was temporary and something ‘I had no choice in.’ But the truth of life is – we always have a choice. More often than not one choice is much easier and offers little or no effort- to give in to your weaknesses, to pamper your cravings, to feed the beast- but the more difficult choice is usually to do the right thing- the thing the inner voice inside us constantly pushes and who we try to drown out with our bad habits. And though that voice goes softer and softer but it never truly goes away…

So I held strong in December and I keep holding strong though on certain days I have to say my resolve is weak. I’d like to sleep in, I want cake and I could do with a definite break in my God awful exercise routine- but then again I make a conscious choice , albeit a difficult one- Will the Devil be my slave ? Or would I rather be a slave to him?

And truth be told- I’m nobody’s slave!

P.s. (Palat says)-: The Devil’s not an evil man with red horns.. more often than not it’s the face in the mirror staring right at us ! I’m gonna keep my inner Devil reserved for costume parties and Halloween!