MY TAKEAWAYS THIS LOCKDOWN
It has been a month- a complete month of “lockdown” here in India. Until this happened none of us perhaps even knew what a lockdown meant! I am self employed-a businessman who runs a medium scaled trading enterprise out of Bengaluru. What I have seen and experienced is unprecedented to say the least but there are so many things to ponder upon with these developments.
In my career of almost 10 years now business never, never ever stopped for anything. Of course unless someone in the immediate family passed away it would have to be done but that also just for a day perhaps. On public holidays too establishments would shut themselves but it was voluntarily of course. All it would take someone to open up is their competition taking off their shutters.
All those holidays that have been postponed so many times on the pretext of being busy, so many get- togethers missed because work took priority. But here is the greatest lesson of life - life indeed is the most important thing in life, for for life everything else stops. So wouldn’t it make more sense to start living and do justice to life?
Perhaps competition drives us but if you really think about it at the bottom of it, all we are is really insecure. We work hard day in and day out hiding our insecurities, trying to look “more successful” than the other. If anything this should be a good time to stop and reflect upon our lives, perhaps prioritize what really matters in our lives and give more time to those things that top that list!
As we enter the thirty first day of the lockdown these are few things I have really learnt from it.
- Spending more time with family is far more beneficial than spending more money on them. We have a tendency to believe that by providing for the family we have fulfilled our responsibility towards them. We often look outwards for social security and our need to be heard, while our greatest asset, our family is waiting to greet us with arms wide open. What’s worse is they too probably feel that void of yours in their lives but are unable to express it.
- This lockdown should have given one a clear picture of how much is enough in terms of earning and hence know where to stop instead of getting caught up in the monkey business.
- LESS IS MORE- a cliche used so often that its lost its meaning. But really what the world needs is this. We have well understood the irrelevance of wardrobes flooded with clothes and shoes we never wear. This also extends to our lavish lifestyles whether it is the food we waste or the resources we waste mindlessly.
- There are people who are not as privileged as we are- its time we acknowledge them instead of turning a blind eye to them. I’m not suggesting we bequeath everything that’s ours to them but at least contribute in whatever little way we can. Sometimes the cost of a pair of our jeans is their cost of living for an entire month!
- Invest in real relationships- with the advent of social media we have a countless number of “virtual friends” but we are more anxious than ever as a generation. This is one area where quality and not quantity must be given precedence. We are a generation that lives on social media just for the approval of others! That says a lot about us. Watching people seemingly happy and enjoying on social media we often compare our lives with theirs only to feel let down and insecure. Is a picture is worth a thousand words anymore?
- Health is another area I’m sure that must have come to your mind. It is one aspect we take for granted until the body decides to avenge itself. By then I’m afraid its too late. Ask any person suffering from any disease what is the one regret they have and they’ll tell you “I should’ve taken more care of myself, I wish I could turn back time”. So its time to be more mindful about what goes inside your body as well as your fitness routine. It need not be fancy at all! It can start with something as basic as taking a 10 minute walk.
- Reflect- while the need for body’s fitness cannot be undermined, one easily forgets to check the state of one’s mind. We are also a generation that is more depressed than ever even though we are a generation that’s smarter than ever and has accomplished more than any other generation! Could be worth reflecting right? We’re running at the speed of light suppressing our feelings and thoughts to a point that we are no more in control of it anymore. Giving ourselves just ten minutes of silence everyday can work wonders in the long run.
- Pursue your hobby or passion if you aren’t already. This lockdown has taught me that there is a life outside of work as well. There is a world within me as well. It brought me back to writing. Whatever your hobby might have been it’s now time to give it more attention. It is that hole you go back to for self discovery and self love.
- Save up for emergency — this cannot be overstated I’m sure. At a time of such uncertainty the savings are all that one has left to fall back upon. Handle this with care and carefully put back in it when better times are back.
It’s hope that keeps us going on, and I’m very very hopeful about the future. This is just a correction of sorts, nature’s not so subtle way of reminding us of our state of mortality. The human race has withstood the test of time and has come out strong in every test nature has thrown its way. This too shall pass.