Being Busy

The question is – Should you act busy for the sake of looking busy, or do it right the first time?

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Life’s Labels

Was driving a few weeks back – a bit of a rush (aren’t we all) and was trying to speed up to the extent possible. Managed to get into the fast lane – oh yes – should be good now. Suddenly I noticed that the fast lane was actually slower than the lanes on the right and slowly people were moving out to the right and driving past. As I approached further, the cause of the slowdown came to light.

A car ahead in the fast lane was moving like a turtle and not giving way in spite of people honking leading to people moving out and staring at the driver. I too was to follow the ritual of the honk, when I noticed a small sticker on the car’s rear!

“Physically challenged; Please be patient.”

And that changed everything!! I went calm, slowed down and just kept my distance until such time I could and then as I approached my exit, moved on. As I passed the car, saw a man probably in his 60’s, both hands clenched on the wheel, concentrating on the road and driving as if there existed no one else and no tomorrow. I was a few minutes late, that was fine, but could not help wondering during the day.

What if there was no sticker? What if there was no sign? What if it was not an elderly person? What if… It also struck as an afterthought – Why did I need a sticker to be patient and calm?

We see labels all around us daily – “Baby on Board”, “School Zone”, “New Mom”, “Senior citizen driving”, “New Driver”… and that changes our attitude. We either accept them, some see them with contempt & wonder why these people are on the roads and why they don’t stay home. Why are we not patient daily in life with people around us? Why do we tend to lose our cool at the slightest instance? Do we need labels to drive our attitudes and perceptions and determine if we are to have a good day or a bad one?

The world is full of people fighting battles – A job loss, failing an exam, getting rejected on job interviews, fighting a disease, going through marriage problems, a death of loved one, financial issues…. All of them despite their battles, continue to live, they have to and they are part of society. We too are pre occupied with our problems in life and we expect others to understand or snap at some one for no reason who does not know, yet we have zero patience with others who may be going through similar situations. Some fight through, some hide away and the not so lucky ones, who lose the battle, choose to end their lives.

Everyone is fighting a battle we know nothing about, as people don’t know our battles. The common thing is – none of us wear a label about it.

The world would indeed be a softer place, if all respected life’s labels. A matter of choice. Ours!

Thanks Roshni for the thought

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Positions Vs Interest

Amazing how positions and interests are intertwined.

People take positions – on what their beliefs are, what is right vs what is wrong. What they will do, what they will not.

At the same time, they are also bound by interests. Their needs, their concerns, their benefits, losses, fears, their motivation that is linked to their passion and can also drive their position

When two people meet, both stand by their positions, bound by their interests. What becomes interesting is that while positions remain and may differ, it is the interest that converges looking at mutual benefit and the long-term impact.

Ironical that it is those people whose positions may differ, but their interest converges, always succeed. More like an iceberg, where the critical mass is beyond vision and lies beneath the surface, it is they who see the big picture.

Those who do not always try to play catch. That I presume, is the difference between success and failure, or ruthless vs being true to oneself, or simply speaking the definition of Politics.

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To The Top!

Sorry but I’m not interested,” he politely said.

I pressured him on it until he said something that totally confused me.  He told me that he *’already made it to the top’*.

I was familiar with his current company and looked at his resume again. He wasn’t anywhere near the top.  He would have needed a telescope to see the top.  He wasn’t even a manager yet.

He explained to me that “making it to the top” for him meant *he loved the exact work he did each day, he loved his company, he was treated fairly and with respect, he made enough money to be comfortable, he had excellent benefits, he had flexibility, and most importantly to him, he’s never missed a single Little League game, dance recital, parent-teacher conference, anniversary, birthday, or any family event.*

He knew what taking the next step in his career meant.  More time, travel, and sacrifice. “Not worth it,” he said.

The definition and priorities of “Making it to the Top” may not be the same for all. It is not what society expects of you, but more of what you expect from yourself.

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Strange that Sword and Words have the same alphabets.

Stranger that both have the same effect, if not handled properly.

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