I met with a few friends from engineering college a couple of days back. We had a great chat and caught up. I was meeting two of them for the first time after college, more than thirteen years later! One of them had undergone a heart transplant a few months after passing out of college. I was intrigued by his story. Here was a real fighter!
Vinay, one of those at the dinner mentioned how he thought that guy and I were really inspirations to him and how both of us looked at life in a very different way. We looked at the big picture and were not bothered by the little problems in life. He asked us if that was true. I nodded hesitantly. I wasn't so sure! It wouldn't of course, be politically correct to say it was not true. We are supposed to be really strong people. We were supposed to be the courageous ones. We couldn't care less about the petty things in life. Right?
I am really not too sure!
I thought about that on and off over the last couple of days. I realized that, at least in my case, that was not completely true. I still bother about the small things in life. I still worry about what others would think if I did this or that. It was much worse until a few years back however. I was constantly doing things others expected me to do. I had set certain standards for myself and I was constantly trying to measure up to them. Even though I was not enjoying it. Just because people expected me to live up to them.
Then I had dinner with Chetan, my best friend, my guru, my bro. I can hardly forget that day. At the bar in Taj Banjara. I was sipping a mocktail and Chetan, a beer. I told him about how suffocated I felt living this life. And then he told me those words. The words that changed my life. "Kamal", he said, "live your life like you are the center of the universe. And as if everyone else is revolving around you." He gave me an explanation too on what that actually meant.
I thought hard about this after and it made so much sense. Why was I constantly seeking approval from others? I must 'get a life', so to speak!
I was a changed man.