Monday, April 18, 2016

O is for old

I celebrated my 36th birthday last week. It's not one of the landmark ages, such as 30 or 50 or 60, but somehow lately I've been feeling older (of course) and also a little wiser. I have spent most of my years feeling either young and foolish, or old and foolish, so it's a surprise to myself that I'm feeling old and wise for a change. Life is so unpredictable that one cannot simply wait to be 90 before sharing pearls of wisdom picked up along the years. Obviously, I'm not qualified to give gyaan such as 'read a lot of books' and 'never forget sunscreen' when I don't even follow them myself (*gasp*), but there are some things that the years have taught me or those that I strive for, which are worth sharing.

So here is all the gyaan I have for you 'young people' (aka anyone who is 35 and under):

1. Get fit. No, seriously. It will pay off in the long run. The later you start, the harder it will be. One of the age-related things that I'm slightly proud of is my fitness level. I'm fitter at 36 than I was at 30. However, I don't meet my own fitness standards yet, so there is work to be done still. Which is a good thing. Makes me get off my ass and on the cross-trainer.

2. Money is not a bad thing, but don't let your life revolve around it. I quit my first job after three months as I couldn't bear the thought of living my life as an engineer. After months of struggling, I finally found my calling. However, I had gone from a sizeable monthly salary as an engineer to almost a third as an editorial assistant, aka the person whose main job was to photocopy stuff. It took me years to crawl my way up before I reached that figure again, but not for a second did I ever regret the money lost. I was just so happy to be finally happy that the money didn't matter. Similarly, when Xena was born, I quit my job as a manager to be home for her. For several years, I earned a sad fraction of my old salary, holding the honourable title of 'freelance editor / starving writer'. But I honestly believe that it was the most worthwhile thing I've ever done for my kid. I can earn back the lost money later, but if I miss her childhood, I can't earn that back.

3. Don't invest any more time and effort in bad/selfish friendships than you already have. Life is too short for constant negativity. And though a 'katti forever' might sound like something only children indulge in, sometimes it's better than holding constant grudges, especially if you don't communicate about them.

4. You can try to put yourself in another's shoes, but it will never be the same as them being in their own shoes. So stop judging. I'm still struggling with that. For instance, I've never had any patience for people who complain about having no time to do what they want to do, but I'm making an effort to stop ranting about the ranters.

5. Be civil to everyone. Even those you intensely dislike. No matter how they treat you or talk behind your back, you must maintain your level. (My dad used to say this all the time when I was a kid, but only in adulthood have I realised the stark truth in his words.)

6. If you can forgive, forgive. If you can forget, forget. You have to do at least one of them to be able to move on. By the act of forgiving, you release the other person of the burden. By the act of forgetting, you release yourself of the burden. If you can do both all the time, well... prabhu, aapke charan kahan hain?

7. Spend time with your kids. Listen to them. They have a lot to say now, and they won't later.

8. Family is family. Nothing else has your back the way family does. And that includes the in-laws.

9. Learn from mistakes, but harbour no regrets. They do nothing but pull you down.

10. Peace of mind is tops. Nothing is worth losing your peace of mind.


Vijay said...

Beautiful ten commandments. I will try to follow. Now I am 44.

Prathima said...

Aapke charan kahan hain? ;-)

Bubblegum.... said...

I am going to pin it on my wall. Okay, First I need to get a Pin-able wall or the soft board. Oh wait, won't it be too ugly for the classy wall I am trying to build? Hell ,NO. :)

My 28th birth day discovery this is! :)

R said...

love these!

Nikita said...

Really good ones!thanks

Prithi Shetty said...

On my 35th Birthay I had this very clear thought/feeling that now I am "Elder" and I no longer need anyone's approval or affirmation. Everything I do, think or decide from onwards will be correct and with zero self-doubt. So far its working alright :)

Very good list. I endorse all 10 of them.

Happy Birthday to you !

Arun said...

5. & 10. combine to "Never give anyone a piece of your mind!"

Arun said...

Is there a Bollywood song for each of these points?
E.g., #6:
bhuli hui yaadein, mujhe itanaa naa sataao
ab chain se rahane do, mere paas na aao

or maybe not. :(

Dew said...

An enlightening post, very nice ! BTW you do not look 36 :)

Sayesha said...

Thank you. :)


Sadha sukhi raho, putri! :D

Thanks. :)

Thanks. :)

Thank you. :)

LOL! That's a good idea for the marathon next year. :P

Thank you! :D I hope you're not going by the blog header picture because that was taken in 2007. :/