190321 – Morning Pages

Quick and yet longish post. Mostly in response to a longish phone call with a friend about morning pages.

I woke up a minute ago. And I slept at like 3 AM. For some reason, I was not sleepy at all last night. For a large part, I couldn’t figure out why. And then it dawned onto me that I had an iced tea at around 9. And since I have been away from coffee for all these days, maybe this tea played havoc with my schedule? Maybe. Maybe not.

So, morning pages. Quite a few things to write and talk about. Lest I forget, here’s what I want to talk about. Screen Time. COVID. Chat with PM. Book2.

Let’s go.

Screen Time.
Yesterday I met someone for a walk and while talking about things, I realized that I have been spending an insane amount of time on my computer and my phone. Here’s a screenshot.

And this is down 24% from last week! I have to have to reduce this. A deeper analysis revealed that I am spending a lot of time on Chess, Twitter, and Instagram. I will probably uninstall these. I mean I anyway don’t have time and I definitely don’t want to “invest” that time on these non-value-add things. I mean they do add value. But at this stage, I have other things to work on.

So that.

Next up is COVID. The number of new cases in Mumbai is touching 3000. I am alarmed, scared, and confused. I don’t know if this is a second wave or not but now I do know that I will also get it one of these days. There are so many people that I know that got COVID in the last few days. And each of these people has been super super careful. To a point that some weren’t even stepping out. I just hope that I don’t get it. Not because I am worried that something weird would happen to me. But because I meet a million people and I don’t want to be the one spreading. I mean I will definitely be the superspreader!

This one is important. I had a longish chat with PM about various things. We talked about my first ever video on Youtube, Founder Thesis Podcast, Investor Thesis Podcast, Life, Morning Pages, and a lot more. While the others may not be relevant, lemme talk about our chat about morning pages per se. For context, PM is one of the daily readers of my pages. So what he says carries a lot of weight. He said, and I agree with each thing he said, that…

  • a, the morning pages have started to get boring. Agree.
  • b, these pages seem to paint a picture of a person that is not happy with his life (he did not use the word unhappy but he implied that). PM, correct me if I am wrong.
  • c, I need to stop with the streak. It adds no value to the reader.
  • d, I need to restart work on #book2. 😀
  • e, I can write things that are a lot more value-adding. For example, I am working on a podcast where I want to chat with investors. PM mentioned that I could write about that and showcase my thinking on that.

Lemme try and address each.
No, I don’t mean to give explanations or defend anything but lemme think out loud about each thing he mentioned.

Boring – agree. Even as a writer, I feel that my pages are getting repetitive. A simple explanation is that on a day-to-day basis, very few things change. So I don’t know what to report per se. Assuming that morning pages are supposed to be a journal. I think the original intent with which Julia created the idea of morning pages was to merely exercise your writing muscle and not create something new each day. I am not sure. I will get back to the book and figure it out. The other dimension is that I don’t really write these for anyone to consume. I mean I do post these on a public forum but these are not supposed to, lest you get feedback. That is exactly what’s happening right now. Friends are well-meaning creatures and they want you to do well and they give you feedback (negative or positive) and you shift behavior! That is what morning pages is not supposed to be. So, that.

One of his suggestions was to write more on book2 and less on journal per se. I agree. But the way I can dump my thoughs, I may not be able to write new things. But I will try. Not today. My first meeting is at 8 and then I have back to back things.

Unhappy person. This is important. Till a few years ago, I was the kinds who could find a problem with even Maryada Purushotam, Bhagwan Shree Raam. I mean his character is fairly problematic if you were to look at him objectively. The point is that I would find problems and then crib about those all the time. Most people that would interact with me would be able to see that. I was shrouded in negativity. Not negativity per se but critical. I hope you get the drift.

Once I realised that I was cribbing, ranting all the time, I worked very hard to change my personality. I became a people pleaser, I stopped voicing my opinions that could be critical, I avoided confrontations, I ceded control, I stopped questioning things that were wrong, I got aware of what I put out on public platforms. And eventually with time, started getting lot more equanimous with things. If someone did something that I did not approve of, rather than passing my opinion, I would zoom out and try to look at things from that person’s perspective. And that in itself would solve half the things. I think I have become a lot better and I want to remain that.

So there is no way I want the morning pages to postulate that I am a negative person that only rants and cribs and is struggling with things. I could write a lot more about things that I could consider happy but I think writing allows me to think better and I often need to think about things that I need to change. And these are often the things that are broken. And may be this is why the pages come across as unhappy rants. I will see if I want to change the tone or fix. Let’s see.

Next. Streaks. Well, here it is. Totally ignoring PM’s opinion.

  • Morning Pages – 97
  • #aPicADay – 78
  • 10K steps a day – 2. I actually did 19K steps!
  • OMAD – 1. Yay! In fact, the last meal was around 11 PM on 17th! If I can manage today, I would have done a 48-hour fast!
  • #noCoffee – 9
  • #noCoke – 9
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0

Thing is, if I publish things on a public medium, I feel a tad more compelled to stick to it.

#book2. I don’t know when I’d be able to start on this. But I do know and do realize that I need to get started. I have realized that I crave for nothing but respect (not fame; respect) and I can not command respect. I need to earn it. And you earn it by the virtue of your actions. And your output. And not just thoughts. The world values outputs. Not ideas. So I need to move my ass.

Value-Adding Things. I agree on this one. I can ensure that each post adds value to the reader. But then, do I need to worry about the reader with the morning pages? I am not sure. This is my space and these are my reflections and ideas and thoughts. Like I said, the reason I make these public is because I like the idea of public accountability. I do want to write things that move the mountains. But I think that’s not what the morning pages is for.

So yeah. That’s it for the day. See you tomorrow.

Over and out.

@PM, do read and lemme know what you think. I think I am better when it comes to communicating with the written word and please please please don’t hold feedback and inputs. I value each piece of input that you’ve shared with me.

060321 – Morning Pages

Update on new projects, personal board, irrational attempts at finding peace in religion, chase of fame and more. Read on.

4:42 AM. Yeah. That early. I just woke up. Eyes are still groggy. I am yet to even wash my face. I slept early last night. Actually not slept. I forced myself to sleep. There’s a lot on my head but I am not sure I want to write about it here. I know I promised to live in public but there are a few things that I am still not ready to share with the world. There are other things that I can talk about. Let’s go!

So I have decided that am going to be in Mumbai for the next three months. At least. So the Goa experiment is done for the time being. Unless I can do things from here. Not sure if that’s meaningful. Or may be I will travel there on this weekends as I stabilize things. Let’s see. For the time being, I need to get some stability in life in terms of money (not career) and that may not happen when I am in Goa. So, Mumbai.

At a new project level, I have started to work two things. I’ve been working on these for a while now but made a promise in my head over the last few days about these and then actioned baby steps on these.

  • A, An anthology film project. If there’s anyone that wants to contribute, happy to share more details. I will need to hustle like mad to get it going. Let’s see what I do. I am giving myself this year for it.
  • B, The Investor Thesis Podcast where I plan to record with investors and see what they’re up to.

More on both these in next few days.

In other news, went to one of the marquee address in Mumbai yesterday for a meeting. I was bowled over by the lavishness. This is exactly the kind of place i had hoped I would get to live in life. May be this is life’s way of showing me that acche din are around the corner? #lifeGoal

After the meeting, I walked around for a bit yesterday. And it felt good. Even though the chappal I walk in is broken and all that, I walked and it felt really nice. Now that I have decided to be here, may be I will add at least the commitment to walk in the list of things that I do? In Goa, to be honest, I didn’t really walk. Even to pick up water, I would take a scooty.

Oh, yesterday, I was so fucked in the head (about the thing that I refused to talk right at the beginning that I needed to let the steam). And there was no way to do so. I mean there’s no one who understands me or who I can talk to about. So I walked around. And took a step in the direction of being irrationally religious. It sucks. I can see myself falling down the rabbit hole and I don’t know how to stop it. I know that the concept of God and religion and a higher power is flawed and for the weaklings. But when I walked, I moved in the direction of Siddhi Vinayak. I have scoffed at religion and temples and all that all my life but for some reason, I felt compelled to walk there. I even looked up direction on maps. All this while I did not want to go there. And yet I continued to walk there. And then I reached. No, I did not go outside. No, I didn’t feel anything special. No, I was not elated. But I did walk till there. But I walked till there and then took a cab home. And I did. I think this is how people become superstitious. Weak moments make men do funny things. Let’s see if I do this again.

Yesterday, I took Krishna’s advice where he said that every time I spend any discretionary money, I must save an equivalent amount. I started already with it. Let’s see if I can continue with it.

Oh, I connected a mouse to this computer and wow, I love it! Lol.

Ok, each passing day I realize that I need to get famous. No one appreciates what you do and what your ideas amount to. But if you are famous, even your discarded napkins are useful. I know that I am not inherently talented and I thus need to work hard. And that means I need to up my creation and distribution game by multiple notches. Yeah yeah, easy thing is to work on #book2. But then I am sort of unable to even start it! Maybe just like today, I will wake up at this ungodly hour and I will dedicate these few hours to book2? But what about the time I need to deliver on three jobs that am juggling at the same time? Arrgghhh, damn these questions. Life would be far simpler if I had a rich father, rich girlfriend, or a cushy corporate naukri where I would push papers and live easier. I don’t praise myself a lot and I am not trying to compare myself to others but I think the way I have been able to cope with disappointments one after other, I am good! Lol! Vain, Mr. Garg, fucking seeking validation all the fucking time!

I also spoke to VK about random things yesterday. With her, I have actioned that idea where I want to make my personal board a little more active. She has consented to be the first member. Yay! I will add more people over the next few days. I am hoping to have about 10 people there. Each has to be honest, upfront, invested in my success, and must want to help me reach greatness. Let’s see how it goes.

So, this is about for the day. Need to get moving with work. Quite a few things on my plate. Over and out.