Okay, so before I can tell you why I began this website, you have to understand where I'm coming from.
In my 23 years of life, I have lived in 8 different places, in 4 different countries (Bahrain, UAE, Singapore and India, to be specific). I'll talk about that in detail in another post. Basically, I've always been on the move. While this prospect may seem exciting to many of you (and it is, for the most part), it comes with its own set of challenges.
The biggest one I feel, is that I've always been trying to fit in. I discovered quite early on, that in order to make friends in every new school I attended, it was best to try and fit in as much as possible, fly under the radar and not be too polarizing as a person. The fact that my mom was a teacher in most of the schools I studied in, also meant that I couldn't be too adventurous at school.
All these influences throughout my formative years meant that I became very uncomfortable with doing anything different, diverging from the crowd, or displeasing those around me in any way. Those of you who can relate, know that this kind of living makes you feel stuffy.
(An interesting upside to this whole situation however, was that I had to develop a wide range of interests to blend in with the kinds of people I came across. From Technology, to Sports (Cricket, F1, Football, Basketball), to Music (everything from Indian Classical to Western Classical, Jazz, Funk and Progressive Rock), to Automobiles, Aviation, Movies (I’ve watched almost all of the IMDB top 200 list) and even Rubik’s Cubes! More recently, I’ve also gotten really interested in Theology, Apologetics, Worldviews, Personal Finance and Stand-up Comedy. Though my knowledge of these topics vary greatly, I am confident that we can have a pretty long conversation about almost anything! Okay back, to the story..)
Because I was moving around a lot, I kept myself from getting too close to people. I didn't feel it was a worthwhile exercise because I'd have to move again in a few years and restart the entire process anyway. It was easier to have friends and keep them at a distance. It also seemed better to just keep my views, opinions and vulnerabilities to myself, lest I be judged, made fun of or left friendless.
This worked well for me, till I moved to a hostel for the first time in my 11th standard (for entrance coaching of course!). For the first time in my life, I was able to have heart-to-heart conversations with people, and guess what, it felt real. And nice. I gave this a go again at NIT Calicut, where I did my engineering, and the result was the same. Speaking your mind, without the fear of judgement felt really good. It was almost cathartic, I must clarify, however, that these stunts were performed within the confines of private conversations with friends, but that in itself felt like a big step. I knew that this was something I wanted to be doing on a more regular basis. More importantly, I felt like my ideas were different and worth sharing. I didn't have to be ashamed- if I didn't stand up for myself, nobody would.
Another antagonist in this story, is my inner critic: a voice so strong and powerful, it has kept me from sharing many of my creations over the years. I am no perfectionist- I don't obsess over the flaws in myself or my work. But unfortunately, I care A LOT about what others will think about the mistakes and errors I make. The classic LKK (Log Kya Kahenge) Syndrome. Over the years, many pages of writing and hours of music videos and covers have fallen prey to this internal assassin.
And you know what? I've had enough. I've realised that people really don't care. We're all too busy worrying about ourselves and our own problems, to be concerned about how bad someone's else's work is.
Recently, I was trying to remember a classmate from school, and I couldn’t quite remember his name. It led me to wonder if the people I’ve met over the years actually remember me. Was I forgotten just like I forgot this classmate? What was I remembered by? Who was I remembered as? I needed to do something about this.
And so, we arrive at this blog. Two semesters into my MBA at NMIMS Mumbai, two questions I have learned to ask myself before any venture are, ”Will this add value to my life?” and “Am I adding value to someone’s life?”. If I can add value to at least one reader's life, I think this blog will have served its purpose. And so, with that aim, I plan to keep writing for the considerable future, about reflections and learnings from my life and my interests. I hope to be articulate, fearless and true to myself, and I'd like to know what you think.
So till the next post, keep shining and keep growing! Ciao!