I often think about why is it that the beginning of the year is always much more pleasant and relaxing than the rest of the year. Most of us start the new year with a lot of work, planning the year ahead requires creativity and dedication. But why is it that the beginning is always far better, people you meet are happier; some even have that extra skip in their walk. Come November, it is such a ‘Thursday’ of the year, with all of us barely surviving and looking forward to the year’s end already.
A well-rested mind my friends is what makes us happy. A happy heart is what makes us be ambitious about how we will work throughout the rest of the year. Rest is not just in terms of returning from a long home leave. Rest is being at peace with one’s own self.
This year, whatever is left of it anyways – can we all try and not greet each other with ‘So how are you – busy?’ I often find this statement very amusing – the person asking the question always assumes that on your behalf already, with the risk that if you dare say you are not busy actually, might be held against you. So let’s try this again today, ‘How are you?’ *insert pause* let’s allow the other person to come up with their own update. Great social experiment I tell you, and no, you are not allowed to answer with ‘busy’. Let’s dig out other nice adjectives!
As part of the ADB cohort taking this Breakthrough leadership course this year, if there is one take away for me it is this: Find that ‘Extra’ in the Ordinary around us. As we push the mundane life of going about our business – let us all stay positive. Let us be a kind mentor to those working in our teams, and a supportive aide to those leading us. It is not always possible to find one’s ideal and interests in our work or personal life but let us all try and make the best of what we are given. Instead of complaining about the bureaucracy within the institution, or the complexities of managing relationships – let’s reflect on how we can be a better version of our own selves. Let us all be more people-oriented, be courteous at the minimum to each other, and if we can manage to keep a smile on our face despite the workload, then to me, we stand as a winner in this year’s run!
Just read these beautiful lines from W.B. Yeats, January 1892.
WHERE MY BOOKS GO.
All the words that I gather,
And all the words that I write,
Must spread out their wings untiring,
And never rest in their flight,
Till they come where your sad, sad heart is,
And sing to you in the night,
Beyond where the waters are moving,
Storm darkened or starry bright.
Some people don’t understand the promises they’re making when they make them,” I said.
“Right, of course. But you keep the promise anyway. That’s what love is. Love is keeping the promise anyway.
John Green, The Fault in Our Stars
Grief really is the price we pay for Love! Whether it is a loved one passing away, or a loved one far away!
I was remembering one of the most beautiful poems of E.E. Cummings, and I share it here with my readers:
i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go, my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing, my darling)
no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)
– E.E. Cummings
I attended this beautiful Celebration of Life event, for a colleague’s husband, who had passed away. What was beautiful about this event was that she requested all religions to say a word of prayer for her dearly departed. I was honored to be asked to represent Islam.
I was very touched by all the efforts to bring all the religions under the same roof. As she chuckled and said to me, “Somebody’s bound to get it right, and we hope that we have ’em all covered!”
What was really beautiful was the way all prayers repeated peace and love for the departed soul. This is what makes us all human, converging in the silent memory of God. The loved ones gathering in memory of the departed is a touchy reminder of living our life fully, not getting caught up in the entangled web of life to forget those who matter most to us.
I have always believed that birthdays are a special occasion. We all grew up enjoying and feasting on our special days. Some birthdays are even more special, because your loved ones surround you with their love, time and attention. Today has been what I have been calling a Case of Exploding Love! I am so full of warmth of those greetings that I am ready to embrace turning 38 this year! God is kind, and He sends His love to us through His special little angels that we see in the form of our family and friends. My sister, little ms. Jaffri outdoes herself every year! I have been telling everyone that we all need a bit of Ms. Jaffri in our lives. She makes you feel special – as if the whole world is revolving around you!
And that is the thing about love. When we love unconditionally, its not about the time we dont have, or our schedules that are conflicting – when we love ’em, we show ’em, and we show up!
Thank you God for little blessings, and especially for loving little sisters.
A note to myself, to cover all aspects of life: work, relationships, life in general:
Grass is not greener on the other side. It is greener where you water it!