Appreciating the beauty in the uncertainty of our lives.

As a generation that largely depends on social media as a source of validation for our actions, the way we use this medium to voice our opinions and express ourselves is becoming increasingly important.

While scrolling through my Instagram feed a few days ago, I couldn’t help but think how each picture holds a special relevance in my heart, and captures a moment that lives on to be a memory till today, instead of just fading with time and being tucked away in hindsight.

Each picture takes me back to a certain place, a certain time, and helps me relive a certain experience. Which, if you come to think of it, is wonderful. Six months ago, I wouldn’t have even the slightest idea of the pictures that I have posted since then- which urged me to think of it this way- beauty does lie in the uncertain. We’re all eager to put out our brightest smiles, and fondest memories out into the world- often forgetting that the uncertainty of these experiences is what makes them even more special.

Imagine having access to every picture you’ll click in your lifetime.

Imagine logging into your account, and chancing upon pictures that you will go on to have, ten years into the future. Imagine knowing the name of every friend you’ll ever make, knowing the dates to all the special occasions in your life- Imagine having your entire life mapped out in front of you, highlighting every checkpoint. It does hamper the excitement to have those experiences firsthand, doesn’t it?

We live life one day at a time- at least most of us do. It’s funny to see how strangers suddenly become best friends, and dreams conjured up in our dreamy heads one lazy afternoon translate into reality, sooner or later.

Imagine being told about every high in your life, or knowing the intricacies of every beautiful experience you will go on to have. You will be left with close to no excitement when the time for them rolls in.

Which leads me to my message for the week- leave some room for uncertainty in your life. Instead of fretting over having each moment meticulously planned out, allow yourself to be surprised by what the universe has, to offer. Let the tides of time guide you to a island that encases a bounty of everything you’ll ever need, instead of figuring out where the ‘X’ mark that denotes the so-called ‘treasure’ is- and putting yourself in a far more difficult situation.

Over the last few months, my life has taken several turns that I had never planned out in my head, and I’ve met people who had been existing on the same planet as me for the last several years- but destiny chose the perfect point in time to put us through similar situations.

It is an innate quality to want to know what the next moment holds. As humans, we can look back at our pasts and curse our bad fortunes for all our mistakes and blocks in the road- but we also have the ever-ignited torch of hope for a better future that burns deep inside us- no matter what the situation is. Keep that hope alive, by trusting the uncertain to map out your life in its due course. 🙂

I know that we all will go on to have wonderful adventures, be moulded by life and its lessons, and go on to meet people who occupy a place of significance in our lives. We will have nights we never want to end, heartaches, crazy friendships and wonderful pictures that will give us bragging rights. 🙂

Learn to appreciate the beauty that uncertainty brings along with it. It will certainly teach you to cherish each experience and opportunity you are given!

As we enter the last lap of this year, I’d love to know how all the experiences that you have had this year, but never thought you’d ever have, have impacted your life. I’m sure all of us have some amazing stories to share! 🙂

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I hope you have a wonderful week, and remember to marvel at even the littlest of things that happen this week. It’s those little things that are not etched in photographs forever, but go on to make us smile in the darkest of hours.

And before you leave, it would be awesome to hear your views and suggestions for this week’s post!

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-Dhruv.

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Quit Complaining.

Complaining brings immense satisfaction. We’ve all been there.

Hold up- if you’ve been looking for a few reasons to complain right now, as you’re reading this, congratulations. You’ve almost successfully articulated your frustration into words.

It’s a lot like the finger and the mousetrap experiment. A few participants were asked to place their fingers on a mousetrap, and the metal bar was allowed to recoil. Needless to say, as soon as it snapped, cussing endued. Some participants were asked to keep their pain bottled up inside, while the other half were encouraged to embark on a swearing-spree. Statistics showed that vocalising pain helps to reduce it- and that’s exactly what most of us do on a daily basis.

I’ve found myself in that position countless times- sometimes, I stop mid-sentence, wondering if all the complaining is imperative. Oftentimes, it’s not.

Alas, old habits die hard. *sighs deeply.* I’ve tried looking at the positive side of situations several times, as opposed to sulking endlessly; but it seldom works.

However, several instances have been instrumental in helping my opinion make a shift towards the better, and I’m recounting one such instance, that I hope helps others as much as it helped me.

Yesterday, I attended a performance showcased by children with special needs. My opinion about this, like most social gatherings, remained unchanged- it gave me another reason to complain. However, I decided to give it a shot.

My knowledge about various neurological disorders is limited. I’m always trying to read up on medical advancements with regard to these, but seeing it right before you is very different from staring at a screen.

It broke my heart to see children suffering from various disorders like Cerebral Palsy, Autism and Down’s Syndrome- all on different ends of the spectrum. What deeply saddens me is that they didn’t have a choice.

They had all been working hard for weeks, for that one day of the year, when they get to showcase their worth and talent. I’ve always believed that they are just as gifted and talented as we are- if not more. They’re all wonderful souls, carrying a message that they long to share. Most of them were non-verbal- which meant that they could communicate only through actions and expressions. And instead of complaining and being upset about seeing them in such circumstances, the beauty of it all tugged at my sleeve. They share their messages through their actions, and leave footprints in our lives without having to use words to express warmth and affection.

It was wonderful to see them put their best foot forward, and showcase the dance moves they had obviously been rehearsing for weeks at an end. The pure, unadulterated joy on their faces reflected that they didn’t stop to complain- despite all the hardships they faced along the way.

This made me think- what if we put all our complains aside, and focus on the task at hand wholeheartedly? This would certainly deliver better results. We all have a crucial life-lesson to learn from these kids. Nobody has it easy in life- but they’ve bloomed like wildflowers in a forest. We need to learn how to face situations tactfully, and focus on creating the best end-result out of the circumstances we’re placed in. Maybe it’s all a part of a larger plan, a larger purpose.

Instances like these urge you to introspect. We all encounter tough situations at different junctures along the way. Complaining is a worsening the hurdles- making this even harder than they were.

If a mountaineer decides to scale Mt. Everest, he is in for months of special training. He must learn the correct way to use equipment, learn the tricks of survival at such a high altitude, but moreover, learn to quit complaining and get going even when the peak seems unreachable. If he’s obstinate, and decides to stop climbing, he’s exposed to more risks, than if he would choose to go on with the climb.

When you reach a roadblock, figure out ways to cross it and get to the other side, instead of camping out where you are, complaining about the end of the road- you’re not there yet. 🙂

This is certainly something that won’t be corrected overnight. It’s not like you can flip a switch in your head, and expect results instantaneously. Just like everything that benefits you, it needs time. Lots of it, perhaps- but it’s all worth it.

You can either complain about the hardships in life, or marvel at the fact that being born as a human is a million chance, and you truly won the lottery. 🙂

(ALSO: MONDAY BLUES ARE SUPER REAL, BUT IT WOULD HELP TO STOP COMPLAINING. MONDAY JUST BRINGS US A DAY CLOSER TO THE WEEKEND! 🙂 )

I hope you have an amazing week!

Just by the click of a tiny icon.

It has been so long since I shared something on here! Oh; how I regret going off track with my New Year’s resolution of updating this blog atleast once every month! That being said, let’s dive into this article.

Social media. Now, where should I begin?

I’m certainly not going to pretend to be saintly and claim to have shunned social media and resisted stepping into its intriguing, tempting lair. Social media is a great way for me to stay connected to the people who matter to me, and it has certainly done me good for as long as I’ve been using it.

Lately, a rankling thought has been buzzing through my brain, tugging at my sleeve to pay heed to it. I’ve often shoved it aside as a petty trick my mind often tends to play on me- but now, I’m going to use my voice to talk about it.

Everyone who actively uses social media uses it for different reasons. What started out to be as an effective means of staying connected has now translated into something bigger and badder. I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I’m always subconsciously seeking affirmation and appreciation through my posts. If I’m having a bad day, I’ll probably share an old throwback picture, use a bunch of fancy, optimistic hashtags, and try to cover up my sadness with a cleverly masked sense of optimism and accomplishments. Sure, the likes and comments do make me happy, but very soon, it’s all gone. I spasm back into the dark abyss I had landed myself in, and continue to sulk away through my weeks. (A not-so-subtle cue to Monday blues. *insert facepalm emoji here.*)

Social media has influenced Body Positivity in a HUGE way. Standards of beauty have changed over the years, drawing in influence from different sources along the way. However; now, we look at the trendiest posts on Instagram as parameters for how we should look. It’s intimidating to put a picture of you out onto this platform, where it’s going to remain forever. And it’s the likes that influence how you view yourself. 42 likes? Meh. I need to try harder next time.

The thing that irks me the most is something that I’ve been trying to change my outlook on- how following someone indicates that you’re on cordial terms with them; and how unfollowing someone quickly sparks a wave of controversy. (What did I do to tick *insert name here* off? Was it something I said? Was it because I followed someone I wasn’t supposed to?) The list is unending.

And I’ll admit it- it’s funny and so ridiculous how I get affected by someone who blocks or unfollows me. You can sort quarrels out- but once someone hits that unfollow button; you’re cascading down a web of self-doubt; pessimism and sadness. Boom.

Use social media wisely. It’s funny how one little thing you do can change somebody’s mood. It’s funny how we’re down to having our temperaments being influenced by the click of a tiny icon! 🙂

(P.S: These views are mine. You are not required to agree to them one hundred percent. That being said, if you don’t like them, don’t unfollow me on social media.😂)

Have a great week!

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YOU are enough.

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We’re always seeking approvals for our actions, often needing validation to reaffirm our faith in ourselves. In every waking moment, we’re worrying about the impact our actions might have on others. Well, this month, I’d like to share a special message with you all. It’s about loving yourself, and knowing your worth. YOU are enough. YOU are all that you will ever need. 🙂

This article comes from a place of deep understanding. I am not struggling hard to be relatable- I’ve been through this vicious cycle of approvals and actions. I’ve often dumped my plans to make room for those of the people who disregarded mine. I’ve let go of opportunities, I’ve refused to board ships that would take me to strange and exciting places, and I have eliminated the possibility of adventures and new experiences tingling my senses, and urging me to let go, and live again. I’m bound by these chains of doubt. I’ve refused to love myself because someone else said so. I’ve refused to chase my dreams, because someone jeered at them. I’ve torn short stories, because someone told me that they would never be good enough to be published. I’ve done all of the above, at different points in my life.

You are strong, wonderful, loved and YOU are everything that you need. You are not the opinion of someone who doesn’t care for you. YOU need to realise your worth, before someone else decides it for you. 🙂

You hold your universe in the palm of your hand- it’s that simple. You govern everything that goes on in your life, you control your actions, you’re equipped with the power to make decisions, and you are a better judge than anyone who tells you otherwise.

 

Massive shoutout to @broken_isnt_bad. She’s an amazing, immensely talented artist! Follow her on Instagram. 😀

 

 

Don’t let Temporary Defeat make you Quit.

On the road to success, you will have to face defeat. This defeat is only temporary- however, most people cannot cope with the feeling of remorse that comes along with temporary defeat, and give up. Think of it this way- a tiny raft will never make it to the shore, if it refuses to win over the choppy waters of the ocean. It will sink! Never give up, even when all hope is lost. You’re closest to the finish line,in that very moment. A marathon runner needs to give his final dash towards the end, just when he is a few metres from the finish line. Similarly, put on your bravest face right when adversity strikes. Fuel your dreams, because you might be just metres away from the finish line- procuring your goal.

Some important things to note:

-Your dreams and goals are your own. Don’t let anyone tell you that any dream is too big or any goal is too hard to achieve. If you’ve dreamt it, you can do it.

-If your desire to achieve is strong enough, temporary defeat will not sidetrack you from your purpose.

-When life knocks you down, get back up. 🙂 Just getting back up on your feet gets you brownie points. I’m not kidding!

Persistence and faith are important to help translate your dreams into reality, and preventing defeat from getting to you.

If I’m persistent, I will chase my goals whenever I see them running away from me. The reason I am chasing my goals is because I have faith in myself- I’m sure, that if I try hard enough, I’ll get to them.

On December 9, 1914, Thomas Edison watched his factory burn down to the ground, in West Orange, New Jersey. That was probably one of the biggest setbacks he had faced in his entire career- he watched years of hard-work, priceless research papers and experiments crumble right before his eyes. He used this setback to his benefit. Although he was 67 years old, he remarked that he would get back to working the next day. He rebuilt his factory, worked harder than ever, and went on to make a huge profit, over the course of the next four years. He didn’t lock himself up in a room, and mope over his loss. He got to building the factory from scratch, and that set him apart from any other man who had faced failures and setbacks. He looked beyond his temporary defeat, and used it as a stepping stone to a bigger, greater, better reality.

Successful people use challenges to their benefit. Being defeated is a temporary condition, dropping everything and giving up makes it necessarily permanent. If you are determined to make an impact, just believe in yourself, and keep going. Follow the light at the end of the dark tunnel. 🙂

On a parting note, here’s a dose of #MondayMotivation from me!

If you haven’t already signed up for my mailing list, you really should! I share a motivational post every Monday. Looking forward to lighting up your inbox! 🙂

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Have a splendid week! I hope your week abounds in joy, peace and success. Looking forward to connecting with you.

-Dhruv. 🙂

#MondayMotivation, from RiteWordBlog! (Mailing list article.)

Hey everyone! This article is for those who haven’t signed up for my mailing list, and missed out on this week’s #MondayMotivation mail!

Subscribe to my mailing list to receive updates on my blog, and an inspirational article, to give a great kick-start to your week!

You can subscribe to my mailing list by giving your details, down below. Enjoy! 🙂

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Happiness is primary. I’ve often heard people say that, with fake smiles plastered on their faces. For an instant, all their troubles are concealed by a smile, a cover-up. Like an ingenious alibi to a murderer. Everything seems perfect for an instant. 

But the question is- are we really happy? Often regarded as a silly question, we often fumble while answering it. It’s all too much. People looking right into your eyes, earnestly. ‘Are you really happy?’

Somewhere between working to achieve the goals others had envisioned for us, to letting go of our own dreams, we all lost true happiness. It’s important to know that being happy is a 24/7 commitment. You will have obstacles along the way that will sidetrack you from happiness, but it’s important to be happy regardless of anything. 

For most people, happiness is something that’s a long-term goal, something that would go down on their bucket list, and probably top it too. If you don’t tell yourself to be happy today, in the present, your future is not going to change. Let me give you an example- A farmer works hard all year round, ploughing his field, using the highest grade of fertilisers. He works tirelessly, regardless of the season. He patiently awaits the rains, to quench the parched land. He plants the seeds in well-constructed rows, hoping for a good harvest that year. Much to his dismay, a fierce storm ravages the village. His seeds flow away with the flood, leaving him with nothing, but a barren strip of land. He has two options- he can either make himself believe that his life is ruined, or he can get back on his feet, and look for ways to make the ground fertile again. There are always options for a situation. Similarly, you can either choose to be happy today, right away, or choose not to be happy at all, and make yourself believe that your life is ruined. It’s that simple. Happiness is an option. 

Find things that make you happy. Start with simple ones. Do the things you love. Wake up everyday, with something to look forward to. Never stop being excited about the things that you are passionate about, the things that ignite a spark deep inside you, the things that make you feel alive. 

Imagine this- you are a chef, preparing a huge feast. You’re adding all your ingredients into a giant cauldron. A small pinch of salt. some sugar. You’re careful not to miss out on anything, because even the smallest modification would alter the taste of the dish you’re working so hard to make. Similarly, happiness is a crucial ingredient for the achievement of your purpose. If you’re careful not to leave out your happiness on the way to your purpose, you’ll be more satisfied in the end. 

I hope you have a great week, and I’d like to convey my heartfelt gratitude to you, for your unswerving support. Thank you for taking the time out to read my blog, to share your thoughts and feedback, and for always having my back. 

Feel free to reach out to me!

Best regards,

Dhruv Gupta.

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Taking the Leap of Faith

Sometimes, you just have to trust your instincts, and take the leap of faith. We’re all subjected to uncomfortable situations in our daily lives, that prompt us to step out of our comfort zones. But if you trust your instincts, and do what you think is right, you will be able to take this transition with a greater ease.

I learnt how to swim when I was three. Every summer, I’d go through a rigorous training, that lasted for about a month. The pool was divided into three sections, and it got deeper as one crossed over from one section to another. On my first day, I was allowed to be in the shallow end of the pool, that was about 5 feet deep. I threw up a fit, obviously. I was scared, and confused, and worried for my life. But somewhere deep inside me, I knew that the right thing to do would be stepping out of my comfort zone, and experimenting with something new. Slowly but surely, I managed to learn the basic movements and techniques. In about a week, I could swim around just fine, all by myself. I was certainly overjoyed- I had trusted my instincts, taken the leap of faith, and conquered an irrational fear that had plagued my mind for the last two weeks. Everything was on track- for the first two weeks, I’d swim in the shallow end for about an hour, call it a day, and go back home.

A few days later, my instructor asked me to move to the deeper end of the pool. This time, it was about eight feet deep, and I was more terrified than ever. It seemed like an impossible task, according to my three-year old brain. Once again, the tantrums began, and I refused to budge. My Mum urged me to try it out once, but I was obstinate. Why did I have to move to the deeper end, when I was swimming just fine, in the shallower end?

‘But Mom,’ I’d argue. ‘I know how to swim now. I can swim in the five-feet end. Look!’ I’d say, jumping into the water, vigorously flapping my arms like a crazed bird, trying to prove my point to her. She’d sigh and shake her head.

The next day, despite all my tears, I found myself clinging onto the ladder that led to the 8-feet section. And, this instance served as an example for years to come. Often, as humans, we hold onto things for temporary comfort and safety, afraid to face the harsh realities and situations that have cropped up around us. My message to you would be- don’t cling onto the ladder. Don’t shy away from swimming to the middle of the pool, where the water is the deepest, and there’s no going back. Once I let go of the ladder and began swimming across, I knew I couldn’t get out unless I made it to the other side. And that became my goal and purpose- letting go of false reassurance, challenging myself, stepping out of my comfort zone, and getting to the other side of the pool. The joy and confidence that trickled in along with the sense of achievement and pride are inexplicable.

About a week later, I moved on to the deepest end of the pool. The water looked daunting and fiercely intimidating. I peeked into the pool, standing close to it. The water looked dark, scary and mysterious. I dipped one foot into the water, and instantly withdrew. The water was ice cold. I almost let out a scream.

I took a leap of faith later, eventually. I jumped into the pool. Probably one of the best decisions I ever made. I tried my best not to sink, as my instructors watched over me. My mom stood by the pool, nervously looking at me. Although she had encouraged me to overcome my fears, deep inside, she was worried for my safety too. I didn’t look back. I trusted my instincts. I got out on the other side, beaming. I had won over my fears. My mom was beaming with happiness and pride.

Since then, I went swimming every summer. Eventually, they asked us to jump off the diving boards, which again required a lot of courage. I had to jump off a 30-foot high diving board, into the water that was another 15 feet deep. Would I want to plummet 45 feet downwards, and roll into a ball on impact? No, thank you. But I did it anyway. Maybe because my gut told me to jump off the diving board, no matter how high it was and no matter how scary the view was, all the way from the top.

Honestly, it did hurt a lot, the first time. Falling from such a height, the water felt like concrete. I thought I’d broken all my bones, but my arms began to fall involuntarily, and I knew I wouldn’t sink, if I tried. I felt alive, and free.

Now, whenever I am in a scary, uncomfortable situation, I look back, and think of all these situations. Whenever I’ve had to deliver a speech at school, talk to a large group of people, or showcase my abilities, I know that I’ll get far; if I trust my instincts.

In any situation, the hard part is taking the leap of faith. The first, big jump. Once you take that, you’re good to go. Nothing can take you down. Even in an aircraft, the pilot’s main worry is executing a safe, hassle-free take-off. So many things could go wrong, right then. A bird could get caught in the engines, the plane could catch fire, there could be any other emergency on-board. Although such scary visions pop into his head, he does take off. He puts all the force he has, into propelling the plane. Once the airplane is in the sky, the rest of the journey is relatively easier. Maybe, he knows that if he can execute a successful take-off, there’s nothing he can’t do.

We all have goals and targets to accomplish. Just know that everything you want to achieve requires hard-work and a desire to step out of your comfort zones. People who are pioneers today never got all that they have by clinging to things that gave them comfort.

Let me share an interesting fact with you. When baby giraffes are born, after a fourteen-month gestation period, they land on their heads. Ouch, right? I bet that landing headfirst on the ground would hurt. On the contrary, this fall helps them to start breathing. What if a baby giraffe would say- ‘I’m scared to land on my head. Please provide an alternative?’ He would never live, for starters. If this blow helps the baby giraffe to begin its life, just imagine how the step you’re so afraid to take today will change yours, forever.

After falling, the baby giraffes are up again, and begin walking in about an hour after birth. They cannot mope and crib about their injuries. If they choose to do so, they won’t be able to suckle, and will lose out on nutrition. It’s important to stand up, tall, after you take your first step. No matter how bad it might prove to be, moping about it will do you greater harm than anything else.

The main conclusion is- trust your instincts. Do something that terrifies you, everyday. That’s the only way you’ll grow as an individual.

A sense of comfort is illusory. It will only last for so long. If you’re not willing to be up and doing, ready to face anything, you will be residing with a fake sense of accomplishment. That’s not a pretty sight, is it?

Ultimately, the power of decision-making rests with you. But it’s important to note, that being afraid will be fruitless.

Let’s push in some physics concepts right here. I’m sure we’ll all heard of circular motion. A body revolving in a circular path, at a constant speed. However, the displacement of the body is zero. Zilch. The body started out from a point, in full speed, but is now back to the same point. No work is done.

Similarly, staying in our comfort zones and abstaining from taking the leap of faith brings us back to the spot we started our journey from. Back to square one. We end up making no progress.

Today, my Mom often jokes, that I can swim possibly anywhere. No matter how deep the water might be. This brings with it a sense of accomplishment, that wraps around me, almost like a warm hug. Now that I know how to swim, I can swim just about anywhere. Similarly, try stepping out of your comfort zone once, and doing it over and again will be effortless and natural, with time. You’ll see for yourself. 🙂

Taking ‘A Leap Of Faith’ is doing something, whose outcome cannot be defined and explained in the very beginning. And that’s what makes it so special. Not knowing what would happen, what could go wrong.

Believe in yourself, and nothing in the world will be hard to do anymore. If I can do it, so can you! May you abound in joy and happiness and success, now and always.

 

-Dhruv.

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