WHEN WORK DOESN’T WORK

When

The other day, I was talking to a friend. She is building her own company from scratch and things aren’t looking too good. She is toiling away day and night to fix issues as and when they crop up. She has the support of a few trusted colleagues. Together, they are trying to turn their dreams into reality. As time passes by, things look even more bleak. They dodn’t know what they are doing wrong, they’ve tried everything (Yes ! Everything they possibly could).

My first instinct is to motivate my friend by saying something positive. Something along these lines :

Making mistakes means that you’re trying” &

If you don’t give up on getting there then you are not on the wrong road.”

But I don’t. It sounds cliched to my own ears and I am pretty sure she’s heard it all before. Many people must have tried to “help” her before me by saying :

Don’t give up” ,

Try, try and try again until you succeed

Rome wasn’t built in a day” or

Success is 99% perspiration and 1% inspiration.”

She must have been given countless pep talks, read all the positive quotes there are and then some. She is passionate, inspired and very meticulous with her plans. She sets time-bound goals and makes sure she achieves them. She doesn’t need anybody
to tell her to work harder, she already is ! The problem is that it isn’t working !

Haven’t we all been in a situation where no matter how hard we tried, no matter how much we sacrificed or how much energy we spent to achieve something, we still didn’t ?

We gave it our best, but apparently our best wasn’t good enough !
Does the fact that we didn’t triumph necessarily mean that we were half-hearted ? Does it point to the fact that we could have done something “more”?

Is it possible that the real reason was an external factor
beyond our control or sheer luck ? This makes me wonder, are there times WHEN WORK SIMPLY DOES NOT WORK ?

Times when the amount of our efforts are irrelevant ?
Times when the situation is not in our control ?

Times when our success is dependent on a host of factors, often not in our hands ?

Perhaps there are. Maybe when someone fails, we shouldn’t jump to the conclusion that their efforts were lacking. Maybe we should try to understand their situation first and then decide whether our “help” is actually helpful ! We should be open-minded about there being unforseeable circumstances or hurdles that simply cannot be overcome.

Perhaps there are also instances where failure is not so bad. Maybe failure is a harsh word that seeks to diminish our efforts. Maybe it isn’t failure at all ! Maybe when our carefully laid-out plans fall through despite our best efforts, we should stop blaming ourselves. Maybe we should grow and learn from the experience and walk along one step at a time – always moving forward. After all, don’t they always say :

If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.

 

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#UnpopularOpinion : IN DEFENSE OF CYNICISM

A is sitting in a bar. B comes over with a drink and offers it to A along with a compliment. Its possible that A is so good looking that B is smitten and wants to initiate a conversation. Perhaps … Continue reading

WHAT #SexAndTheCity TAUGHT ME

This is the second post in the SATC series. Read the first one – 10 Poignant Questions Raised by Carrie Bradshaw in #SexAndTheCity here.

1. Best friends = Soul-mates

When Charlotte York observed, “Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates and guys are just people to have fun with.” it opened up a whole new world of thought. Partners may come and go but your friends stay with you through thick and thin, so it is only natural that we accord the coveted “Soulmate” status to them !

Soulmates

Source : rebloggy.com via Giphy

2. You DON’T have to succumb under societal pressure with respect to marriage/ children

Society never ceases trying to make everyone adhere to what they think is “right”. The right age to get married, the right time to have kids, the right number of kids and so on and so forth. But it is high time we do only what’s right for us. Case in point – Miranda had a baby (and raised him) with Steve but didn’t marry him until she was certain he was “the one” and that’s what she wanted to do. She didn’t let the fear of “what people might say/ think” affect her life-changing decision.

Friends

Source 90S90S90S.TUMBLR.COM via Giphy

3. Marriages are hard work

After the big fat wedding, with the princessy dress and the enchanting venue comes the hard part. Every (Yes ! each and every single one) marriage has issues / problems that the couple has to work through. Even Carrie and Mr.Big’s marriage hit a rough patch.

Wedding

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4. WALK-IN CLOSETS = WHAT DREAMS ARE MADE OF

If you love designer labels, shoes and a dose of retail therapy every now and then, you should definitely work hard and save enough to get yourself a walk-in closet.

Manolo Blahnik

Source http://www.thefrisky.com via Giphy 

5. It’s alright to frankly discuss sex

With people you are close to ofcourse ! Your friends and even your partner. It should not be considered shameful or wrong. Having said that, this does NOT mean that lewd/ obscene comments should be encouraged. Healthy and meaningful discussions about sex help inform, educate and ward against STDs and unwanted pregnancy.

Yes

Source : theodysseyonline.com via Giphy

6. Every relationship has problems

Everyone has issues. Trust issues, Communication issues, Over-Spending, Possessiveness, Jealousy, Anger-management issues etc. Since each one of us is flawed, so are our relationships !

Hard

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10 POIGNANT QUESTIONS RAISED BY CARRIE BRADSHAW IN #SexAndTheCity

Carrie

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Carrie Bradshaw. The three things that come to mind when we hear this name –

Shoes. Shoes. And more Shoes.

Ok seriously, setting aside Carrie’s love for Manolo Blahniks, her walk-in closet choc-a-block with fashionable clothes and the faults in her personality (no one is perfect) ; she wondered about relationships and sex. Her musings were often given the form of questions in her column “Sex and the City”. Some of them were really powerful, some have boggled us for ages, some with no apparent answers and some we’ve all asked more than once.

Here’s 10 of them that touched a chord with us and made us ponder. Not that we’re any closer to finding answers than she ever was. If you loved #SexAndTheCity as much as we did, read on !

(Disclaimer – We are no experts, we do not claim to have answers or insights into the mysterious world of relationships.)

 1. “In a city like New York, with its infinite possibilities, has monogamy become too much to expect?”

In this day and age, is it possible for a couple to stay true to each other throughout their lives ? Esther Perel explores in her book “Mating in Captivity: Sex, Lies and Domestic Bliss” that desire, excitement, mystery slowly wane and give way to security, reliability and safety. So, can we keep the spark in our relationships alive? Can we prevent our partners from looking for excitement outside the relationship ? What if someone does not believe in monogamy, if for them polygamy is perfectly natural and acceptable ? Does everyone expect monogamy or does it differ from person to person ?

2. “Is cheating like the proverbial tree in the forest? That it doesn’t exist if there’s no one around to catch you?”

For most people, infidelity is a sign of betrayal. The lying, sneaking, hiding is often more painful than the actual act of cheating. On the other side of the scale, some believe that its alright as long as your partner doesn’t know about it. Is ignorance bliss ? Relationship expert Esther Perel urges us to “rethink infidelity”. Is it inevitable ?

3. “In a city as cynical as New York, is it still possible to believe in love at first sight?” 

Is love at first sight a figment of our imagination ? Something that exists only in romance novels, fairy tales and movies or we just too cynical to see it ? Have the harsh realities of the modern world sapped our beliefs ?

4. “Can you be friends with an ex?”

They say that you cannot be friends with an ex. That after everything you’ve been through, you can’t possibly go back to the way it was before. There are too many memories, feelings, emotions that prevent you being on decent terms with an ex. But is that always the case ? Doesn’t time heal all ? Is it not possible for us to look beyond the failure of our relationship and cherish the bond of friendship ?

5. “Inside every confident, driven, single woman, is there a delicate, fragile princess just waiting to be saved? Was Charlotte right? Do women just wanna be rescued?” 

Are all women damsels in distress, waiting for their knight in shining armour ? Is their independence just a façade? If yes, is this the result of societal conditioning where women are constantly told that they need a man to “complete” them? Have all the fairy-tales and romance filled films subconsciously ingrained the “happily ever after” syndrome in women across the globe?

6. “To be in a couple, do you have to put your single self on a shelf?”

When you are in a relationship, you share a lot of things with your partner/ spouse – you share your feelings, your dreams and future, often even your home. Does this mean you have to stay joined at the hip at all times? Is there a line where your shared life ends and your private life starts? If a partner wants some “alone time” to pursue his /her interests or meet friends outside of his/ her relationship, is that too much to ask? Is someone in a relationship allowed to keep certain things to himself/ herself or is it a given that he/ she must tell the partner absolutely everything? Is it reasonable to expect your partner to share everything with you or is a little bit of mystery actually good in the long run?

7. “When will waiting for the one be done?”

The One. The belief that there is someone out there who is PERFECT for you. So you try to find this person. Some are lucky while some are still looking. Some have created a warped image of the one and are comparing everyone they meet to that image and its impossible standards. The bar has been raised too high, which inevitably leads them to let go off perfectly good potential partners just because they aren’t “the one”.

8. “When it comes to life and love, why do we believe our worst reviews ?”

When we receive compliments, we generally thank the person in question for complimenting us. Sometimes though, we don’t believe them. Their compliment might just be out of politeness or kindness we think. Maybe they have an ulterior motive which is why they are buttering us up. When someone says something negative about us or criticizes us however, we’re hurt. It is like a bolt to our hearts. Is what they said true, we wonder. Even if uttered by someone we don’t like, we stop and consider it. We ask our friends/ family if they think the same, wanting to reassure ourselves. Why do we not give the same consideration to our best reviews?

9. “Soul mates: reality or torture device?”

Soul mate. The person who is meant for you, who you will meet in serendipitous circumstances and fall irrevocably in love with. Are they just in our minds, to make us feel better about the world, to make us feel less lonely ? Does this belief do more harm than good when try as we might we are unable to find our Soul mate? What of people who try to mould their partners into their idea of a perfect match?

10. You tell us by leaving a comment below. Which of Carrie’s questions made you ponder ?

This is the first post in the SATC series. Read the second one – What #SexAndTheCity Taught Me here.

YOU KNOW YOU ARE AN ARMCHAIR TRAVELLER WHEN…

1. Travelogues turn you on

Travelogue

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Be it in the form of books, magazines, feature films, television shows or documentaries.  Pouring over pages after pages of travel related articles, sitting glued to your chair while watching a travel based show or listening to someone recount their adventurous travel tales excites you, entices you and makes you happy.

2. Researching a new place is your forte

Compass

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Discovering snippets of information on a town’s history, its art and culture, monuments or
tourist attractions is an immensely satisfying and rewarding experience. You would happily burn the midnight oil studying about a faraway land from the comfort of your own home.

3. Discussing different cities / cultures is your favourite pastime

Globe

GIF Courtesy – gifgifs

Exchanging information on rituals, beliefs, food, laws etc with other like-minded
people keeps you going. If you meet someone well-travelled, you pick their brains about their journey, what they saw and what they experienced.

4. You know as much about a place as a local resident

Confused Tourist

GIF Courtesy – gifgifs

You might not remember the last time you actually packed your bags and hopped onto  a bus / train / airplane, but you probably know more than an average tourist who  just visits the popular ‘touristy haunts’ and does not feel the need to explore, take in the
very essence of an area.

Actual travel may be limited to wishful thinking for you, but in no way means that you are unaware of the world around you. You might be an armchair traveller by choice, due to restricted time / resources or any other personal / professional reason but you know your lust for anything travel related isn’t lesser than anyone else.