290821 – Morning Pages

I talk about shifting, reliability, sleeping on the floor, hidden talents and games people play!

8:07. Starbucks at Khar. Here cos I have to meet someone at 9. And this is the only thing that is open where I could’ve sat and completed my morning pages in peace. I have about 45 mins to go. The place where I am supposed to meet is like a 5 minutes hop away. So that.

Yesterday was eventful. I finally moved whatever I owned to a different place. Some to SJ2’s place. And some to Paras’. When I was moving, I used the crew from the events business to help me with things. And they did a decent job. Better than what a professional packing team could’ve done, do be honest. I think I should start that, a relocation service! Lol!

So, two things from there.

A. The boys that moved the things. Most of them were around 20. I suspect one or two of those was not even 18. Yes, I did ask. While they worked as causal workers, each of those had dreams that went beyond even mine. They wanted to be film stars, politicians and all that. After the shifting was done, I got them for lunch. While chatting around, they showed me some of the work they’ve done with their not-so-fancy phones, and I was blown away by the output! These kids have literally no training in filmmaking or scripting or anything of that sort. And yet they were able to create something that I can even dream of. They had tools that I have not even heard of and they used those like I would flip weapons on Counter-Strike. Or as fast as I type. You know, from muscle memory. And cognition. It was insane to see those boys in action. I wish I had an iota of talent.

I have made a promise to self that I would work with these kids and get them to make a short film (at least) or a docu that I would produce. Of course, once I am back in Bom. Let’s see when that is. #parkedIdeas

B. Now that I have moved things, I dont have anything in the house, apart from some clothes that I need for the next few days. And some stuff that I want to carry to Delhi. I had to carry a lot more but since I am going via a train and taking stops at Ahmedabad, I may not be able to. Not important. The point is, the house is empty. With just the things that it came to me with. And I had to sleep on the floor. And it was painful. I thought people said that sleeping on the floor was good for the back. I am sore as a log. I felt as if someone has beaten me blue with hockey sticks and all. I am not rested. And I have to sleep like that till the night of the 2nd. 4 more nights. Damn. If I die because of exhaustion, it would be unfortunate.

So that.

In other news, I was supposed to record a marketing podcast with a guest. The gentleman did not show up. And I was informed about it when I checked his team, 2 minutes after the time we were supposed to record. I dont know how people can be so careless with other people’s times. If you dont commit, I understand. But once you’ve said that you’d be there, you better be. Or inform beforehand! Ok, this sounds like I am angry or something. I am not. I am merely logging it here. And then taking a lesson for myself.

Finally, I have to write this lesson I learned yesterday. I am yet to process it fully but it was important enough for me to capture it here. I may even write an SoG about it. I was seeing this conversation between Dr. Peterson and Lewis Howes. Around the 15th minute mark, they talk about games we play as individuals. And they talk about how you can and must become a person that everyone wants to play with! Play is defined as social interactions. And games as things we do as people – interact, work, entertain, play etc etc. They go on to talk about how if you can’t be the one that everyone wants to play with, you can definitely become NOT the last person that gets chosen when other people have to pick when they choose to play. And then they talk about things that you need to have to become that. In one line, the answer is, you must work to ensure that others that you play with, go back better before they interacted with you. And nothing else.

This is a little counterintuitive. I mean when you play a game, you want to win. Come out on top. Come out a winner. And that is often at the cost of others. So you are essentially getting ahead at the cost of others. The others dont get to become better. If you however put other people’s interests ahead of you, they see that they are getting better as a result of interactions with you. They would talk about it. Make more players aware of the favorable outcome. And the odds of you getting picked would, well, pick up!

Funnily, I have been doing this for a while now. And as a result, I believe most people want to include me in their teams (not as the first few choices). Most people want me to have their back. And that is valuable. I need to work hard to become the first person they think of when they want to play games.

The only thing I need to be aware of is that most people that I choose to play with, they often leave me poorer. And thus I know I dont want to engage with them in more games. And I need to better the way I select and pick people.

So that.

Guess this is about it. 1000 words already. And we are at 8:44. Less than 30 mins. See that’s the thing. I can spill out words very very fast if I know what I want to talk about. Just that I need to have a rich enough repertoire and mental faculties and world view that I have enough and more to write about. And write often.

Chalo, moving on with the day. Over and out. Here’s the streaks.

  • OMAD – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 171
  • #noCoffee – 14
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Money spent – 9122
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 261

130821 – Morning Pages

A dump of things that I spent a lot of time mulling over yesterday. I think this is what Living in Public really is!

8:28. Starbucks. Friday the 13th. I just hope this day goes ok! You know, superstition and all that.

So here are the things at the top of my head. In no order…

A. Walked 10K after ages.
Even ran a bit. Not ran. Hobbled. For about 300 meters. And then panted like a cow in Delhi’s garmi. Did half-pushups. Just need to get consistent with it. Lol. This consistency is my Achilles Heel. I am great at doing great things in spurts. But I suck when it comes to doing things for long, I suck. #sgQuirks. So, need to fix this.

After the walk, I was missing Diet Coke so much that I decided that I will break the 150-day streak and have one. And I even made my mind to get a frozen one, pour in a glass and savor the taste.

And then I did not. Yay! #win

Here’s a promise. If I reach the Base Camp in one piece, I would get a Diet Coke for myself. So let’s see.

B. Away from Bom.
It is starting to hit home that I will be away from Mumbai for some 2-3 months. I was away last year as well when I lived in Goa but I still had a house and my things were here. This time, I am moving lock, stock, and barrel. In the sense, I am putting my things in a godown and letting go of the house I have here. So, come to think of it, it’s like letting go of the city that I have come to love. For the freedom, access, opportunities, friends, love-interests, hopes, miracles, tears, sea, misal-pao, and more that Mumbai gave me.

No, I am not going away for good. I have to make it in the films business. And startups. And teaching. Lol. A million things yet again. Mumbai is where I would be.

Or maybe not. I mean if I get away from Mumbai, I would either be in Goa. Or out of India. Goa is more of a state of mind where things are slow and all that. But come to think of it, the only one thing that is keeping me back here is M. She may move on as well in the next few months. Post that, who cares where I am.

Wait. Isn’t life like that? You plan plan plan plan and more plan. For the future. And then it creeps up on you so slow that one fine day, you realize you are 38 and you are still planning for the future. What future? At 38, people retire!

C. Applied to a few jobs (I dont know why) last night on Linkedin.
In exactly the same heart-less, mind-less manner that I approach my attempts to find a relationship on dating apps.

I mean I like the idea of a gig that gives me a lot of money. I like the idea of being in a relationship that gives me joy. Not that I am dying hungry. Not that I am joyless.

Thing is, I know I want to do better than where I am. I know I need to get more stable. I know I need a companion. I know I need more than what I have. And yet, all I do is heartless, half-baked attempts at fixing things.

I dont know a way out. But that.

D. Writing.
I did not write on book2. Neither on SoG Book. Damn.

If I have decided that writing is going to be my thing, I must push myself. I must wake up each day with the intent of pushing my craft! For without that, I dont know why I exist.

E. Self-respect.
Yesterday, I got into this weird conversation with someone I care for. Even though I know that my attempts at patching things will not lead to fruition, I still tried. And as a result, I was left with heartburn.

Not cool at all. I must work to get my self-respect quotient high. I shouldn’t do these stupid things. And these have been happening with increasing frequency. Need to fix it.

Will work on this over the next few days. Need to become more stoic.


So that.
Living in Public!
A list of things on the top of my head.
A lot to fix. May be over the next few days.

Here’s streaks as I start the day.

  • OMAD – 0
  • #book2 – 0. Did not write yesterday as well. Missed for 2 days in a row.
  • #noCoke – 155
  • #noCoffee – 0. Had two. Venti. Tall. Americano.
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Money spent – 30 + 30 + 130 = 190
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 1. Finally got 10K steps in. After 2 weeks.
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 245

080821 – Morning Pages

I talk about being Indian, Neeraj Chopra’s Gold Medal, Speaking Well, Dr. Peterson and more. And some shower-thoughts and wants!

6:34. Long day ahead. Lots of work. That’s what happens when I take a break for a day or so. But then I cant complain about how I spent yesterday. It was a good day, to be honest. I met M and it is fascinating to see her grow and discover and fight for and find her place in the world. I wish I had more understanding when it comes to kids and all that. And I wish I would assert more on how kids that matter to me are brought up. Wishful thinking.

Anyhow. I just wish I had the money and time and lack of ambition to live a day yesterday often. I mean a day spent with leisure and all that. More on #echochamber.

Moving on.

I woke up a few minutes ago. Two things that I am thinking about are, 1, Neeraj Chopra’s Gold medal at Olympics 2020. And 2, this video by Dr. Peterson as soon as I woke up. In this, he talks about how misery could be a source of your inspiration. Lemme talk about these two.

I saw the Tiranga getting raised to the top and then the national anthem being played at Tokyo. It was a heartening sight. Made me think about how things and time change. And how I have changed with time. There was a time when I was as staunch and as hardened Indian as they come. I believed in our supremacy. I was blinded to the mistakes we made as a country and as a society. I would dismiss the apparent flaws in our culture. I would love the “chalta hai” way to respond to things. I would take wows to make us proud and reclaim the lost glory we’d grown up reading about. You know, before the time invaders starting plundering our “great” nation.

But then, over the last few years, something changed me. May be I became more aware. May be I got more “educated”. Maybe society became more extremist, more hardened. May be, I saw how other cultures and societies are “better”.

Somewhere, I lost the fanaticism I had for India. Of course, I remain proud and grateful that I am an Indian. I know I can’t change that about myself. But I do now think and wish and hope and pray that I could live in a different country and a different place. There are multiple reasons for this. For starters, the very meaning of freedom / independence and being an Indian is lost. We are now a country of people blinded by religious dogma and blind extremism around religion. We are now a country where we celebrate the failure of others rather than the success of self. We want to become Atam Nirbhar in conduct and yet turn a blind eye to this conduct when faced with adversity. The right to speech is being taken away. The ability to do things is being made more and more difficult by the day. We are now deeply engaged in plastering everything we have with a photo of a man in a white beard and not concerned that the history books are re-written and laws of the land are being crafted that would put even the cavemen to recede deeper into the folds of the mountains. Even the athletes that are winning the medals are being ignored and the entire nation is captivated by the one phone call congratulating these athletes and their coaches.

Anyhow. I can rant for hours if I have to but I am not as well educated or informed. I am sure there are people that will justify the actions of people. After all, we know how to defend ourselves.

Lemme move on. Saw this video.

In this one, he says, resentment could be a great teacher. I think everything I feel that life’s being unfair and I am getting a raw hand in relationships or work and things, I would do 10 push-ups. Simple. I would make my resentment a road to fitness if nothing else. And then from there on, I will do whatever it takes to sort things.

So that.

I want to talk more about this resentment as fuel for life but not today. Need to start work. I do have to talk about something worth noting though. The ability to speak well. Dr. Peterson speaks so so well. It’s not funny how many times I let my rational / thinking mind ignore what he’s saying just because he speaks so well!

Staying this ability to speak well, yesterday I got talking about some of the best orators of Hindi as a language. Ashutosh Rana (this and this) comes to mind. Then VG told me about Kumar Vishwas (this). Rahat Indori Saab (I dont even know how many to link here) has been among the best orators ever. Even this from one of those nationalistic films is a great case of someone inducing goosebumps only via the power of words.

I really wish I could speak as well as these people.

I think I can decode these. There are two things at play here.

A, the content. I mean, these are great words, great poetry that is being narrated. The words themselves are goosebumps-inducing. The stories are inspirations.

And B, as important, the way they’ve been narrated. The passion, the pauses, the clarity of tone, the breathing, the speed, and all that. Ufff!

I need to get better at it. Point me to some source. PLEASE!

So yeah. That.

Lemme end today’s post with something that I have been thinking about, over the last few days. I even wrote about it on the 4th. The book I have been editing is done. And the time slot from 8 AM to 9:30 AM is now available. Should I just assume that it’s a sign (great proses, Dr. Peterson, my misery, my want for validation, my poverty et al) and create something for myself? I mean I am definitely not a one-hit-wonder and it’s high time I get going and work on something for myself. A book, a film, a large-ish project (like a Jigsaw Puzzle, a magnum opus or something). #note2self. Lemme try and start from tomorrow, even if I am supposed to take a break for a few days in Sep.

Let’s see. What. When. If.

That’s it for the day. Here’s the streaks.

  • OMAD – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 150
  • #noCoffee – 0. Had two. Tall. Americanos.
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Money spent – 250 + 250 + 1500 + 257 (2257)
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 240

PS: I speculated that yesterday that ink in my system has run dry. But then I got back to writing these today, I realized I can rant a lot. Yay!

PPS: #showerThoughts. Had this really cool thought while showering today. Lemme give context. While brushing my teeth, I realized that I have these huge bags underneath my eyes. And this is probably because of the last two-three days of lack of sleep. Which is probably induced by too much coffee. So, what if I go to my local Starbucks and talk to the store manager and ask him that I am gonna sit there for 4 hours each day and NOT buy a coffee. Of course, I dont want to be a freeloader and thus I am happy to buy their merch / food. Or even donate. But I dont want to consume. Would they then allow me to sit at Starbucks and work? Let’s see. Will try on Monday.

040821 – Morning Pages

There’s nothing specific that I’ve on my head today. So a list of random notes / things / ideas etc.

5:50. I had a sleepless night. I mean I was in bed by 1030 I think but I kept waking up. I dont know why but I did not sleep ok. It has to be coffee. I had a strong one yesterday. Even though I ate like a hog after that and had a lot of water, the residue was still in my system, I am guessing. Anyhow. I am up. Yawning like a baby. Lots to be done today. Let’s see how it goes.

Yesterday was ok.
I did some work.
I talked to some people.
Troubleshooted a few things.
Moved along.
However, I did not do my 10K steps. I ate kachra. And I have anyway stopped working out. I am not even making pretenses that I will try and do anything. The only thing I am doing is regular walking. And trying to get enough sleep. Yesterday I didn’t do these two either.

So if I am serious about EBC and Everest eventually, I need to get my act together. And come to think of it, I had made a promise to myself that fitness will become my number 1 priority. Even if work suffers. I think what’s happening is that I am allowing work to suffer, and yet I am not doing anything for fitness. Must mend my ways.

Oh, I need to buy a new chappal. The one I bought from Bata is very very uncomfortable. In the sense that it’s heavy. It’s a good thing, to be honest – it is probably helping me prepare for trekking shoes that I will have to wear for 15 days. But on a day-to-day basis, walking around in bad chappals is probably gonna hurt me more. So need to buy some flip-flops.

Moving from the feet to the head. I have this void in my head. About not working on a book. I mean the book (biography) I am helping edit / write / research is sort of done. It’s with the publishers now and unless they come back with a lot of changes, my job there is done. I miss not working on it. I miss not thinking about it. I miss the narrative structures that I would draw. You know, putting a thought in a manner that it’s comprehensive and easy to consume. That. Maybe this is the right time to pick up the second book? Lemme try once I reach Starbucks.

Ok. What else is at the top of my head? I have spilled enough ink about how I am moving out of this house end of August. Oh yeah. The next short film that I am co-producing with Shikha and RCF is going on the floor soon. As early as the end of August. Yay!

Also, on the film, I am gonna make sure that I am the film photographer. I’ve been wanting to experiment with it and this is the opportunity that I have sort of created for myself. If I can make a mark, it will be a classic case of creating luck. In fact, I think I like this idea of playing with things and scratching my itch even if I have to put in my own money. I mean why else do I make money? To try new things. To spend on things that I like. To do things that others won’t allow me to. So that’s cool. And I must mention that all I am doing here is helping Shikha who’s the real reason why this film is happening. She (and a few others) are my Venue and Serena! Lol! Self-gloating max.

Ok. What else?

Guess rest is the regular humdrum of life. More tomorrow. Here’s streaks.

  • OMAD – 2
  • #book2 – 0
  • #noCoke – 146
  • #noCoffee – 0. Had one. Venti.
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • Money spent – 30 + 3000 + 363 + 399 + 25 + 55 (3872)
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • Minimaslism Counter – -2
  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 236

270621 – Morning Pages

After the longish post yesterday, I am sort of black. Don’t have a lot to talk about. So, a non-meaningful update.

6:15 AM. Up a while ago. Tried sleeping at 10 but by the time I finally hit the sack, it was 12. Lemme start by recapping the mile-long rant I wrote yesterday and how I am faring at various things I talked about.

  • Filled water container and bottles. To a point that I don’t think I will have to order in for the next few days. Good!
  • Since I couldn’t work from my place, went to a friend’s. Promptly fell asleep. Lol!
  • Saw no Netflix. But ended up seeing almost all the videos on this channel. You must check them out! Bad.
  • No coffee but had a RedBull. Bad.
  • Ate one meal of just Dal. But then ate chips and assorted kachra throughout the day. VERY bad.
  • I think I need to find a non-carb thing that I can munch on all the time. I use chewing gum often but it’s either too sweet or a ball of rubber in the. I prefer something savory. Or something like Diet Coke 😀
  • Did 3 minutes of meditation and 5 push-ups (in 2 reps. For someone like me, 5 is like infinity. Super stoked. I need to be able to do 500 in a day. You know, if I want to build strength in my arms! Good!
  • Walked some 3K steps. The plan is to get out more and reach some 15K a day.
  • Slacking on work yet again. I still haven’t figured this as an answer.

So, more bads than goods. But then some goods nonetheless. So that’s a good thing. Need to have more goods and less bads. And then monitor these closely so that I only have goods and no bads. Ok, enough of this good and bad wordplay. Has stopped making sense.

Lemme think what I want to talk about today.

Wait.
As I write this, I am back to listening to Singh is King title track. On loop.

In highlights, along with AD, I started with the Podium Writing Fellowship. The idea is simple. We want to add a leg at Podium by adding text content. Now, the niches we operate in (entrepreneurship, marketing and more) has enough and more competitors to even get started but we believe that the content we have is so good that we can rehash is. The first rehash we’d do is text-based content. You know, newsletters etc.

The trouble with it is to find people to write it. For starters, writers are a rare commodity. It’s tough to find great writers. Second, even if we find some great writers, the way we run The Podium, we don’t have enough cash flow to find writers sustainably.

So AD came with an idea to identify young writers and help them get better. Of course, the responsibility to do so is on my shoulders. I have never delivered a longish course to help others learn but I think I am excited. More than anything else, this would help me improve my writing! In the world where AI would eat creative work (you know, GPT-3), this is an attempt to remain sane by actually doing work that creates meaning.

Ok, I am digressing.

The point is, at The Podium, we are taking so many shots and doing so many experiments that I am hoping one of those will stick and make this struggle worth it, at some point. I just hope we can make enough money for everyone that works with us at The Podium. And of course at all other places where I put my time and energy.

So that.

I am back to listening to discourse by Dandapani. Today’s its this video.

He talks about finite among of energy and attention, life purpose, people that uplift you, importance of attention (over money), death (and the finiteness of life), energy vampires, staying affectionately detached to people (super important for me!), passing on the burden of responsibility, happiness (and pursuit of lifestyle that create happiness).

I love how he talks.
I love his content.
I think I am a fan!

Lemme try and take a stab at this. What is my life’s purpose? At a materialistic level, I still want to make a billion dollars, climb Mt. Everest and while I do both, inspire a billion people! In terms of a little more metaphorical level, I want to enable others I know to do well. Do well is an open-ended thingy. I define it by saying that whatever is your end-state that you want to achieve for yourself (make films, travel the world et al), I want you to enable you to do that!

I seek my happiness in yours. I want to see you succeed and I want to derive joy from that. I want to ensure that you live, grow, thrive on a day-to-day basis and I do whatever it takes to enable you to do that.

No, I dont have the resources to do this for a lot of people and for a living and I still need to make my ends meet. Maybe at some point, I reach that place. Whenever that is. Let’s see.

Need to think more. Need to act more.

Guess this is it for the day. Here’s streaks…

  • Morning Pages / Meditations – 196
  • #aPicADay – 0
  • 10K steps a day – 0
  • OMAD – 0
  • #noCoffee – 0
  • #noCoke – 108
  • 10 mins of meditation – 0
  • #book2 – 0
  • Killer Boogie – 0
  • Surya Namaskar – 0