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.

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Virtual Reality vs. You

Today’s world is a PR world… a world built on perception and fantasy based in our own ‘virtual reality.’

Virtual reality is the new real world experience. And what you are perceived to be is what you are… Or is it?

When we tweet “Love is what I am all about…” do we forget that we’re in an extramarital relationship or that our husband doesn’t come home to us?

Why else would we post ” With Super star ________”… when we’re backstage at an event ensuring he gets water at the right temperature or a seat at the right time!

When we photograph food or alcohol on a friday night saying “Yay Friday…” are we trying to pretend that the food and alcohol will be eaten and drunk by someone other than us despite knowing this will be yet another lonely weekend?

And all this is fine… if you know the truth. My only grouse is with those whose virtual reality has so far eclipsed their actual reality that they pretend to be the holier than thou souls ; those that can do no wrong. So full of themselves, they forget that behind the cover of the web their actual being is nothing like the one that they perceive themselves to be! Their perception is their reality and that reality is skewed. When they actually meet real people , we’re in for a shock because since we don’t see them with rose-tinted glasses…they like any one of us is flawed… but maybe even slightly more damaged. How so, you ask? Well at least we know who we really are… but them behind their PR and delusional virtual reality have forgotten who they were so long ago that they don’t ever see themselves without the tinted glasses.

So even when the world’s laughing in front of them, at them… they miss out on the joke… because they’re so busy creating a new virtue reality starring themselves!

Treat her like a lady!

Stop wishing me ‘Happy Women’s Day!’ Don’t fill your offices with balloons or give me a free cookie with a cup of coffee! Don’t give me chocolates or roses. Don’t smile at me unnecessarily or create lunches to felicitate me!

Instead treat me as an equal. Treat me with respect. Pay me the same as you would a man for the same job. Do not doubt my commitment to work because I have a family and do not doubt my commitment to my family because I work. Don’t comment on me as if I were an object. You don’t own me . You never will. I own me. Listen to me. Talk to me. Hear me. Believe in me. Fight for me. Love me.

Don’t lust for me. Don’t abuse me. Don’t hurt me. Don’t demean me. Don’t laugh at my dreams. Don’t mock my ambition. Don’t think of me as weaker. Don’t lie to me.

I may not be your sister, your wife, your mother or related to you. But I still am a woman. I am the glue in a family. I am the strength in a home. I can bear your children and raise them with love and care. I create. I nurture. I give love. I give life. I give strength.

So don’t wish me ‘Happy Women’s Day-‘ treat me the way a woman should be treated- with care and love; with respect and awe. Treat me special every day, all the time because I give you the respect of being a man… give me the respect of being a lady!

 

Relationship 201- What to do when the honeymoon period is over?

So you’ve met someone and the ‘honeymoon phase’ of the relationship is now kinda over. You disagree. You argue. He has an opinion (shocker) often different to yours (double shocker!). She stops dressing up. He’s not shaving that often. She’s stopped the heels… He’s stopped opening doors…And suddenly it seems like this isn’t going to work out any more…! I mean he/she seemed perfect till they stopped pretending and became who they are!

So how do you make it work?

How can it keep being fun/ fun-ish…?

How do you not become…(dreaded word here!) b-o-r-i-n-g!?

So as a self confessed commitment-phobe… yes I really HATED RELATIONSHIPS and most of my long ‘relationships’ lasted 3 days,4 days and one… an awful week…(I didn’t see him for 3 out of those days, so that helped!), these are my tips and tricks to keep your relationship in the ‘dating phase’ for a whole lot longer!

  1. Do a lunch date once a week… Escape from the humdrum of work/ normal life and just meet up for an hour… Once near your place of work/home and once near his… This makes the week less mundane and gives you a welcome break to spend with your partner. Have a quick meal and linger over coffee and dessert and just chat…! Take turn making the plans so it gives you something to look forward to! You’ll have a better afternoon at work after that for sure too!
  2. Dress up for dinner and go out once a week… Dress up! This is important because you can’t take your partner for granted. Don’t just dress up for the parties and the social do’s – make an effort and dress up for your partner – heels, straightened hair et all…girls and men- shave, suit up and take your lady out! Enjoy the dinner. Talk. Ask questions. Make travel plans. Laugh.
  3. Hold hands….seemingly easy…actually very hard. Hold hands when you are together. Hold hands when you fall asleep. Re-establish intimacy. HOLD HANDS.
  4. Share a hobby or a sport…OUTSIDE HOME! Go for a run! Go join a language class… Go gym together- Get out. Get out TOGETHER!
  5. Fight and finish your fights. Don’t change who you are or what you believe in. Fight for who you are. Fight about the death penalty, Lance Armstrong… whatever…. argue and then listen to each other. You fell in love with someone not because they were a clone of you…You fell in love with their differences…So listen to them.
  6. Ask about each other’s day- once in the morning where you hear all the plans. Then make a quick phone call at lunch to check on your better half and then at the end of the day ask how the day went and share. Sharing makes the other person realise that you value their opinion and also they get to hear how much you do. Talk and share!
  7. Make a few big dates… for me it’s out First Date Anniversary, Valentines Day, Wedding Anniversary, My birthday and his… and make those days super special… Take time to plan them together and make a day of it! Spa days, dinners, flowers…make the day special!
  8. Surprise each other- flowers, favourite foods, a CD… gift a gift – a no occasion ‘just because I love you’ gift. You used to do that when you dated…so don’t stop!
  9. Travel together…but most importantly PLAN THE TRAVEL together…! That’s all the excitement and so much happiness… so PLAN TOGETHER!
  10. Watch TV together and go to the movies… you may not like all his choices and he may not love all your rom-coms but watching something together , holding hands and just being… that relaxes the stress of a relationship and allows you to have opinions as a couple on silly tv shows and forgettable movies!

These are just 10 tips… there are so many more… But all I’m saying if you’ve found the right one… Don’t give up on him/ her because you think the ‘romance is over’ just change your definition of romance… The honeymoon may end but the love starts then…. And that period can be way better than the honeymoon ever was!

Have a romantic week ahead!

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!

The movie of your life! (Rules to Live By)

Rise and shine. It’s a new day. Smile. Walk. Run. Talk. Eat. Laugh. See. Do.

Don’t waste time on tears. Don’t waste time on fears. Life will happen regardless.

You may win. You will lose. You will love. You will hate. You may achieve but you must always try. Live the truth.

There will be days where you don’t want to get up. There will be days where you won’t want to sleep! There will be days that you’d love to forget and there will be those that you’ll remember every moment of.

Dream. If those dreams shatter and make some new dreams. There will be plans and they may not happen. Life has it’s own plans…It doesn’t need yours!

Save money. You will make money and you will lose money. You’ll be in debt and then you may have more than you need. Save.

Walk the road with your head held high. You may trip. You may even fall. But get up and keep walking because life is an adventure and though sometimes you are in the darkest tunnel remember there’s always a moment when you see the glorious hint of the sun!

Love. Fall in love. Rise in love. Give love. Demand love. It makes the journey of life worthwhile.

Don’t expect to love everyone and don’t expect everyone to love you.

Respect- give respect and be worthy of respect.

Inspire and be inspired! Don’t shut your mind to new experiences. Open your mind!

Eat the cupcake. Don’t spend your life on diet cause you will always see yourself as fat then! Don’t spend your life on food because you’ll miss out on other experiences then.

Have an opinion. Find one. Make one. Create one.

Laugh without a care.

Today is a great day because in the movie of your life-YOU ARE THE STAR!

Why?

 

Why is life not the way we want it to be?

There is too much to do…too little time…

Too much time…too little joy,

Too many people, too few friends,

Small beginnings, dramatic ends!

 

To wait, to see, to wander, to be,

To live, to breathe, to touch, to feel,

To cry, to hurt, to pain,to grieve,

To dream, to want, to forget, to leave.

 

Why can’t today be tomorrow and yesterday be today,

Why can’t we take back what we never did say?

Why are you here, yet so far away?

Why did it take so long for me to understand?

That life is but a charcoal sketch

It’s the colours we add that make it grand.