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Hashtag Is In

It started when we ended college, because it was time to act like adults, find a career and live on our own. Getting a placement offer was a great deal and a beginning of a new phase.

Our career began with us glaring into computer screens and our fingers figuring out their way on the keyboard. The first day started with butterflies in our stomach and an inspiration to head towards new life. Most important was that we believed it to be our future.

Those monthly credits into our bank accounts, that sneaky smile and the thought that finally we get to do what we plan for a week before.

The beginning of this phase was great when owning a fancy phone was a necessity and visiting latest party pubs was always on the weekend agenda. Those endless obsessions over someone else’s career vs our own were discussed over fancy lunches, followed by those conversations about latest fashion trends. It was such a rush when we started working.

Few months into this ball game and our perspective changes.

The office hours gets extended beyond the hours mentioned in offer letters and the personal time goes in sleeping or rolling in bed. By the time we realize we are already working 12-14 hours in the day and that flexibility route through laptop and work from homes is causing trouble instead of any help.

We never realized when we became random people in formals, hanging laptop at the back and lunch boxes in one hand, rushing to board the cab just to reach on time. Office hours had turned into back to back meetings and threatening deadlines.

Weekdays are all about the heat and weekends are for beer parties. Suddenly we question ourselves – For how long?

This phase that began with huge excitement, why it is not that exciting anymore? Is it just me or there are many who could relate?

 

The unending work – By a girl who killed her creativity

A very dear friend with who I share everything is also a victim like many people. Her phone is always reachable but she is not.

Questioned on numerous occasions about unanswered phone calls, and her standard reply was, “What to do Dani, the work is never ending and I am so exhausted that I need a break”.

Sounds normal and like everyone’s story. Isn’t it?

I still remember the time when we started our career, it was all about how to grow and climbing the corporate ladder. It took us 10 years to realize that the ladder isn’t meant for us.

Soon excitement was limited to weekends and discussions over our next vacation. My friend and I started our career with almost same level of motivation. What has really changed is the perspective.

When did it become this boring? Never thought that we could be asking this question after a decade.

From promotions and appreciations and the zeal to outperform to the feeling of doing what doesn’t exhaust us anymore.

But the real question is – Is it really possible?

The answer lies is in knowing what you really want to do. I love writing and my friend loves food. And that’s enough to tell about us.

Well I graduated from a personal diary to a blog and that’s where I will finish talking about me.

My friend is still in the discovery mode. I hope that she finds her nectar appealing enough to be placed for others to taste.

Time and again her culinary skills were tested by many and she cleared with flying colors. From assisting people with the best food options in the city to experimenting with different recipes, she cleared it all.

I remember her frustration changing to amusement by those meals that delight her palette. Trying different places isn’t just her hobby, it’s a survival mode sometimes. Those times when her Friday’s were screwed by an argument with a colleague and instead of heading towards home, her destination was a restaurant nearby.

Over these years, all she did was to eat outside at a new place each time. For me she is an encyclopedia of binging delights.

Don’t you think a person like her would feel misplaced in the life full of conference calls and training sessions. Like she chose a wrong career for herself. But who she could blame. She never knew her love for food runs so deep until now.

She knows now what she wants to do. Or atleast beginning to know.

However time and again her ambition was kept on a serious hold because of work, work and unending work. Will the work ever end? Not that I can think of. Work is strategically placed in our lives to keep us occupied. And when we love something, we need to make that space for our love between those work schedules.

A scroll through those Intagram worthy pictures, that shakes her inner child. And then something happens. The little voice in the head, tells her that people will never value her work.

Can creativity be killed with a routine? Yes and not just routine, but with self doubt too.

The joy in being authentic is beyond words but we are so pulled towards the convectional lifestyle that we look for security even in creativity. But the thing is that creativity doesn’t promise success. It promises to take you to an exciting journey with your “true self” with no guarantee ticket.

The only thing guaranteed out of it is that inner joy.

I hope that my friend starts with that journey soon to see the other side of herself.

 

Ambition doesn’t die, it changes its place – By a restless soul

Degree after degree and if it isn’t enough then few more certifications to land up with the job he always wanted. My friend is a genius. I am not calling him that, but his academics are.

Always scoring the highest position (or maybe sometimes 2nd or 3rd) in school and then clearing IIT Mains, coz that’s what you do when you are good in academics, pick what they say is the right career choice. Science becomes your favorite subject and committing to engineering is the norm. If it doesn’t work out then MBA is the next best option. Basically your life is about collecting degrees and feeling proud.

But why doesn’t it feel like that now when he has got what he wanted? A career in the best company possible and benefits that are countless. Still not happy. Huh!!

Don’t get me wrong, my friend started his career with great passion. The beginnings were pepped up and package boosting career choices were well discussed in common groups.

Everything was exciting, competitive and had an oomph factor.

Few years later I got to know that he started his own company, hustling side by side along with his full time job. I could hardly take out time to do my writing as a hobby and he started with his company while working full time.

I wondered what actually went wrong. Has he really given up on climbing the corporate ladder?

That usual flaunt of successful projects and the leadership know how are the thing for the past now and suddenly it’s about doing your own work. That high visibility role and a handsome salary isn’t enough for him anymore.

I thought for a moment and next minute I called him.

“Its not like I don’t like what I do. I want more rewards for what I do. I strongly believe in doing my own work” he said.

I find nobility in his thoughts because he is true to himself. He refuse to keep doing what he is ought to do and believe in doing what he feels like doing.

That’s what Jeff Bezos said when he started Amazon, “What’s dangerous is not to evolve”.

This was a great start for him and no matter how much he hustled he was always full of energy.

But believing in your dreams isn’t enough because the road is never smooth. Working double shifts slowly hampered his performance. He slept less and had too much to handle. A demanding job with a fresh business of his own.

When I met him for a quick weekend catch up, he told me how difficult it is to be your own boss. “Jobs are way easier dear. Owning a business is like owning the entire headache from facilities to client retention. There is so much involvement and less reward” he told me.

During the catch up I understood that its not just about identifying your passion. It is also about sticking to it even if it seems like a goose chase.  As Robin Sharma says, “If genius was easy, everyone would be doing it”.

After that day I kept in touch with him, asking him about his business every time I called. I was silently admiring him for his courage to be honest.

His business didn’t run that well but he was not naïve to quit his full time job. He fulfilled his financial requirements and used the money for the business he owned.

As I spoke to him each time, I realized he sacrificed a lot for his vision. He worked for 20 hours each day including the weekends, with little to no personal life at all. However the results were not earth shattering.

He invested a lot initially into his business and didn’t get good clients as well. It went like that for few months. I didn’t speak to him for like an year and got involved in my life.

It was some time ago that I decided to make a call. Post few casual talks my question was, “How is your business doing?”

“It’s great. I mean not that great but improving. I got two big potential clients that I am looking to convert. I am not hoping much but giving my 100%” his voice had a thrill.

It was great to see him excited about seeing a small ray of light after a long time. The best part in his journey was the fact that he never gave up.

Finding passion in your dreams is not difficult but keeping up with it is like marriage. It requires work and your own rules in each of the phases.

 

Is Creativity meant to succeed?

I find people having doubts about creativity. They often want to be creative only when they know that it would succeed in the end. Otherwise it is nothing more than a childish fantasy.

If that’s what you think then let me clear few clouds of myth for you. Creativity isn’t about success or fame or money or anything more predictable. Creativity is about getting connected to your inner child. It’s about finding ways to express. It can be through art or through science.

When you open the doors to creativity and start having fun with it, strange things happen. A small poem that was yearning to come out of you which finally gets its place on the piece of paper, makes you smile. You want to do it again only because you want to sense that joy. Again.

Many people get confused that creativity has to pay your bills when on the other hand it is not obliged to. Do you think Leonardo Da Vinci signed a contract with creativity before painting “The Last Supper”. Had that been the case, his masterpieces would have gone with him.

Creativity doesn’t go hand in hand with predictable options. There are no rules in creative living.

Have you ever seen pictures taken by famous photographers? Even if you are not a fan, I am sure that there were instances when you opened the magazine and you couldn’t help but notice the beautiful picture of a scenery, or a fashion model, or a bedroom décor.

Many of us think that photography can be learnt in classes. Yes you are right. The rules of photography are taught everywhere. The focal length, ISO, shutter speed are few topics to begin with and any school can teach you that. But even if the rules are same, how come the pictures aren’t? What could be reason?
Is it years of experience? Maybe but not completely. It is that every person has a unique way to be creative. With years their connection with creativity is not only unique but has become so deep that the precision and individuality can be seen in pictures.

The key is to have fun with your creativity without expecting too much. Self doubt and the hope to see some serious positive results kills the beautiful outcomes.

I hope you have a very creative life.

Until next time.

XOXO

 

Hashtag Is In

HASHTAG IS IN

12 Comments

  1. Fantastic post! I think we get confused between making a living and making a life. Creativity for creativity’s sake is enough. I heard a great quote fromDeepak Chopra: “The Best use of imagination is creativity. The worst use of imagination is anxiety”. I find that if I have a creative outlet, I feel far less anxious. Thanks for the great post!

    PS, I love the Dee Hock quote! 🌷

    • Daniya says:

      Thank you soo much for those kind words Paula.. I am glad you loved the post.. And thank you again for sharing Dr. Deepak Chopra’s post. I find his work quite interesting..

  2. Cool blog post! I love being creative since it makes me happy.

  3. Erin says:

    Great thoughts, I especially liked this quote from your post. “Finding passion in your dreams is not difficult but keeping up with it is like marriage. It requires work and your own rules in each of the phases.”

  4. Nina says:

    If you are a creative person you need to incorporate that into your life whether its in addition to your ” job” or in place of your “job”. Only then will you feel fulfilled.

  5. Lucy says:

    Everyone seems to be starting their own business at the moment and entrepreneurship is the latest buzz word and the career to have but it’s not suited to everyone and is incredibly difficult.

    I think if you have a burning ambition you should always give it a go but if it doesn’t work out that’s ok too. At least you tried.

    Creativity didn’t come natural to everyone but if it’s for you, you should definitely go for it.

  6. Jemma says:

    Creativity is important. It’s how we set ourselves apart from others.

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