Each of us has, at some point of time in our lives, received life advice from our personal life-coaches – parents, siblings, teachers, mentors, kids, the vegetable vendor or the stranger sitting on the adjacent seat on the flight. Something that moved you, changed you or made a difference to your perspective forever. India Pages brings to you these slices of life, shared by people from all walks of life … Writers, Photographers, Artists, Television Producers, Hands-on mommies, Entrepreneurs and Engineers …. Meet Gaurav Sharma
The time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time
One of the biggest burdens of living on this planet is meeting other people’s expectations or to succeed in comparison to others. What plagues most of us is the tendency to compare ourselves to our acquaintances and their achievements. When I was fairly new in my career, my manager who later became a mentor, to me exposed me to the beautiful words of Roman scholar, Epictetus. The philosopher had spoken to his students 2000 years ago and such were his thoughts that they are relevant even today! Some of his profound words are as below:
‘One can never earn the same rewards as others without employing the same methods and investment of time as they did. “All advantages have their price” and we may not always want to pay that price. That price can also be one’s integrity.’
These words have changed my perspective towards life, forever. I take them a step forward and believe that every human is unique and has a role to play in his or her unique ecosystem. Comparison is harmful to us and to others who depend on us. Most of us work towards building a beautiful house, car and other material things but not everyone works towards building a beautiful “self”. The real measure of your wealth is your worth after you lose all your money!
Learning about and from the music of RD Burman, and his personality is a passion for me. I am an admirer of his work and him, but there comes the trap. We are surrounded by ‘devotees’ who in their mania claim ‘my hero is better than yours’ or ‘this composer or singer is better than the other’. I refrain from making any such comparisons strongly believe in what Bernard Baruch said, “You don’t have to blow out the other person’s light to let your own shine”. RD was the greatest for me, but that does not take away the fantastic work of others!
Epictetus also said, ‘Create your own merit. Never depend on the admiration of others. True happiness can be achieved when you have harmonized your actions with nature, by recognizing what is truly your own.’
We need to think about ourselves, the passion we have deep in the heart, the things that fire our soul and the moments that inspire. Passion is contagious. The more you share it with others, the more it spreads and the more it grows within you. Passion is my biggest motivator and my mentor firmly believes that passionate people make for the best employees, team members, family and social beings.
This passion brings a sense of security in you, and will stop you from comparing yourself to others. So from now on, start figuring out what drives you and what seems easy and smooth as you do it. Ask yourself, what can keep you going for hours without a break?! It is in this thick forest of passion, that you will find the sweetest nectar of excellence and achievement.
As Marthe Troly-Curtin observed in her 1912 book ‘Phrynette Married” – “the time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time”.
About Gaurav Sharma
Gaurav Sharma is a Bangalore-based author, public speaker, strategy manager and essentially a collector of fine things like inspiring thoughts, stimulating moments and life lessons. He is an alumnus of IIT Bombay and IIM Kozhikode, worked as a Business Consultant, was part of the National Award winning film, Pancham Unmixed and has co-authored coffee-table books, ‘Strings of Eternity’ and ‘Diamonds & Rust’. He can be contacted on email@example.com.