15: You are in your own ‘time zone’

A friend forwarded this message today, and it instantly lifted my mood and took away some of my anxiety. I am sharing it verbatim below.

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Hope you are all enjoying in your own ‘time zone’. You will ask, what is this time zone? This is a very important factor in one’s life and life moves in this very factor. In order to understand more, read the message below:

Kenya is 2 hrs ahead of Nigeria, but it does not mean that Nigeria is slow, or that Kenya is fast. Both countries are working based on their own “Time Zone.”

Someone is still single while someone got married. Someone after marriage waited for 10 yrs before having a child, there is another who had a baby within a year of marriage.

Someone graduated at the age of 22, yet waited 5 years before securing a good job; and there is another who graduated at 27 and secured employment immediately !

Someone became CEO at 25 and died at 50 while another became a CEO at 50 and lived to 90 years.

Everyone works based on his or her ‘Time Zone’.

People can have things worked out only according to their pace, working in their own “time zone”.

Your colleagues, friends and even younger ones might “seem” to go ahead of you.
May be some might “seem” behind you.

Don’t envy them or mock them, it’s their ‘Time Zone’
You are in yours!

Hold on, be strong, and stay true to yourself and make your life happy and full of aspirations, goals and pursuits. All things shall work together for your good. You’re not late … You are not early … you’re very much on time! Because you are in your own ‘Time Zone’. Best wishes

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13: Letting go

The most difficult part of losing something, a person, a dream or a memory, is to surrender and accept things for what they are. You see the person, the dream or the memory fading away, and all you want in that instance is to hold tight. But, the more you try the more you fall apart and sink deeper in the pain. It’s like riding a roller coaster or trying to survive in a quicksand. You have to be able to give up and let go, in order to survive. The person, the dream, and the memory may be precious to you, and you might feel that you won’t be able to live without them. They might be the best thing that happened to you, and gave the desire to live. But their value is not absolute, it’s all relative to you. The value of a person, a dream or a memory cannot be more than life itself, your life. You have to lose control first, in order to gain it back. For when you let life nurture and flow like a river, many new people will enter your world, that lost dream will make its way for another, the faded memory will be replaced by a more vivid one. You have to believe in the possibilities that life has to offer.

Imagine yourself in a train journey, the first destination might have been amazing but don’t get stuck there. If we stay in one place for long enough, we become obsolete. Allow yourself the chance to explore many more destinations in your life. Give yourself the chance to get back on your journey and who knows you might end up at the same places where you started.

12: Should we use the word ‘love’ sparingly?

I have always had a great fondness for people. People bring out my best spirit (and sometimes my worst). I love the kindness, tenacity, and spirit of people, I love their talent and zeal for life. I find something to love in everyone I know; and when I say ‘love’, I actually mean love. My heart swells with joy and I am struck with admiration and respect for them. I never hesitate to tell people when I love something about them. Very often, people are unaware about their own qualities and I like to remind them that they are special. A lot of people have difficulty believing it when they hear their own praise. It’s because they don’t believe those things about themselves and they struggle to figure if I am being genuine in my praise or merely trying to flatter them.

All this changed when I first fell in ‘love’. The experience was so overwhelming for me, that I started questioning every other time I used the word love in my life. The feelings of joy and other emotions associated with it were so intense, that everything else seemed bland and not worthy of that label. It was the kind of selfless love which makes you cherish everything about the person, the good and the bad, and prompts you to be a better version of yourself. I decided then that I would not use the word ‘love’ for anyone, unless I come close to experiencing similar emotions. In doing so, I was also trying to ensure that, that one particular love remained special. I wanted to give that relationship its rightful place in my life, the highest one, so I demoted every other one in my life. I would proudly say, I love only a few people in my life also meaning my love is rare, cherish it. But, reality does not always play out as we like and things do not always remain the same, so when the dust settled on the ‘one love’, I found myself at a place where I felt that I wouldn’t ever be capable of producing love for anyone else. Everything from here on would just be a game of charade and pretence.

But, I was wrong. All this while, it was I who was stopping myself from finding joy in the world and people. The world never ceased to exist and be beautiful, it was I who was looking the other way. The moment I let myself fall freely in love with anybody and everybody, I gradually started to fall in love with the world again. I thought I had just one heart to give to the person who deserved it the most. It turns out, I had a thousand more from where the first one came from. The more I give it away, the more I feel complete.

9: Unconventional love stories

Every love story is special, but what makes some stories worth telling and not others? The greatest love stories show us our own potential for unconditional love, through others. The greatest love stories are also the ones which show us that love is nothing but supreme sacrifice. When a person is ready to sacrifice their happiness for the sake of someone else, the seed for a great love story is laid out. How often does that happen in the real world? Not a lot, which is why we have only few stories worth sharing. In most cases, love is used as a romanticized term for an arrangement. We ‘love’ somebody when we decide to be there for them, in return for them being there for us. We provide emotional and physical support in return for the same. If either parties falter, we move on to a new arrangement. That is why people say ‘love’ is work, you need to put in as much effort as your job. In contrast, real love may have nothing to do with romance. Every day I fall in love with someone, a little bit. I don’t even know them and may never see them again, but that love leaves it joyous imprint on me.

Unconventional love stories are my favorite kind of love stories. That’s because the characters cannot usually provide what is naturally expected from them. In the absence of expectations, unconditional love flourishes. A guy who stops pursuing his crush for a mentally challenged girl who loves him unconditionally; the man who devotes his entire life looking after and saving the life of a boy whose mother he deeply loved, the girl who prioritizes her sick brother over her own romantic needs. These are all some of the beautiful tales that history has told us which shows the human capacity for unconditional love and sacrifice. There is an old Indian couplet, which translates us, Do not love like the birds, which fly away when the lake dries; Love like the fishes, who die when the lake dries. Contrary to what you may be thinking, this is not an advertisement for self-destructive love but only illustrates that the transformative power of love which changes you (for the better or worse) when that love ceases to exist.

When we all love unconditionally, we are taken care of by each other. But what happens when you love people unconditionally but remain unloved throughout your life? Is that a risk worth taking or should we just resort to mutual living arrangements a.k.a relationships. That’s a choice which everyone makes in their lives at some point of time. The greatest love stories remind us in our mundane lives, that if we choose to open our hearts to the fullest without being afraid of the consequences, that will be a story worth reading, a thousand times over.