Getting There; on a quest to know who I am, wholly.
I don’t remember the last time I wrote something and felt good about it. Honest to god the last couple of weeks have been, let’s just say, kind of mind opening.
I’ve always been a growth-oriented person and off late, the past three-four months have basically been me lying to myself. By that I am referring to the various goals I’ve set for myself, things that I know on completion will make me really happy that have not been achieved or rather, not even attempted. I simply just chose to not work on myself. I look back wondering why wasn’t I just doing what I loved doing properly and have fun that way.
Yet every time it would come to doing something I’d very conveniently skip that task and move on to the other which I feel I’m more adept at. And I would just stick with that and lie to myself saying I’m doing a decent amount and that I am actually satisfied with just that amount.
This inner voice, the one which helps you along in your life at various times, spoke to me and told me to get up and just start, just begin and see how it goes.
Yet, every time, I wouldn’t listen to this voice. I’d brush it aside and carry on with, now in hindsight, I can say, a highly indecisive and irrational decision-making process. And I don’t really know what had come over me but I knew that if I actually put my mind to it I can break free from that miserable state.
Now I knew that I’m not going to be able to make a change by just telling myself what is logical and what is not. I knew that trying just that wasn’t happening, that spark wasn’t there. I didn’t feel like myself.
Indescribable is one word I use to describe this state.
So I opted to broaden my horizons, expand my conscious, experience and wonder, grow by learning. I travelled to Himachal Pradesh this October for fourteen whole days with a few of my classmates, people who I’m close to, people who I appreciate and people I respect.
Living in this surreal atmosphere surrounded by peaks showered with snow and different people, from different backgrounds and various stories. Living in the wild, just being there, in the moment, I learnt a lot.
Experiencing that culture and interacting with such an interesting bunch of people who are all driven by their love for nature, positive energy and creativity. People who had experienced the city life, seen what 'worldly pleasures' look like and decided that they want to live in a world which makes them feel at peace, at one with themselves and nature, exploring their talents, strengths, practising their discipline, learning and being open to new adventures and experiences at all times. Growth, holistic growth. Healthy growth.
I’ve been reading a lot too, Paulo Coelho, Oscar Wilde, Sadhguru, Vishen Lakhnani, John Kim, Robert Kiyosaki and it’s honestly a really great feeling cause one, I’m finally rediscovering my love for reading and two, I’m soaking a lot of knowledge and understanding a lot of varied perspectives. Now I’ve understood that there is no specific path, every human has their own path to walk on, interpret and understand.
So what Paulo Coelho experienced is a part of life but it was his life and his own take on those instances. When I read and look at their perspectives of things, it’s really interesting cause then you’re able to identify a pattern with your own perspectives by comparing the two and questioning it both ways. It really helps stretch the mind and for my case, find answers.
I fell prey to a horrible tackle while representing the university football team in Lavassa which led to a dislocated and stressed out knee. This is the same recurring injury I had just recovered from. And this had me devastated, for two reasons, one being this constant dull pain which won’t go until my knee is completely stable again which will take over a couple of weeks and two, I really felt this was the tournament where I stepped up, where I basically went and annihilated every one I played against and helped my team immensely to lifting gold. And this killed me.
I broke into a near depressed phase facing the reality that this is probably the last time I’m playing football. And everything came back to me, my entire career to date. The matches I’ve played, the people I’ve met, the fun I’ve had, the joy I’ve experienced, the respect I’ve earned, everything beautiful about the game just came to me.
And I realized that this sport is not something I can leave without a fight. And for that to happen, there are only two ways I can play to my fullest. One is surgery and two is building my left knee to a state it’s stronger than Cristiano Ronaldo’s. I accept that reality now.
I’ve started drawing and exploring my creative side, I’m using my imagination a lot more, I’m trying to work my brain a lot more, stretch it. To be better, to explore.
And that’s cause I’m tired, I’m tired of being fake to myself. I question who I am so much and tell myself that I do not know, that I have no idea, ' you’re still figuring it out it’s okay Ankit don’t worry if you have no idea who you are.’ And eventually, I’ve come to the conclusion that I do know myself, just as I look back at all my experiences and how I’ve dealt with them has shown me so much. It’s exposed me to the fullest, highlighting my flaws and reminding me of the good traits.
I’m first a fighter. I’m brave. I’ve always been a fighter. I’ve always tried to live by the motto of being a beast, at least on the football pitch. And every time I’ve got injured, I’ve vowed to myself to come back stronger than ever. And in all honesty, I’ve been lying to myself. I know that I can do better, that I can be fitter and faster, that if another human being can do something to their body through hard work and work ethic, I can too. And that relates to everything you do in life, at least to the things that you want to invest in. And that’s what I’m going to do. And if my injury recurs after doing all that I can to become the strongest I’ve ever been then I’ll call it a day with my head held high.
Identifying myself scamming myself by not doing all the things I’d like to has taught me one thing that I can’t get stuck up in what’s already happened. I can’t enter that loop. Because it’s hard to get out of it once you’re in. And I’m finally in my senses again to pull myself out of this loop.
Travelling around and experiencing new sceneries taught me to live in the right now. The present. Being present in the moment is quite frankly the best way to live. In the here and in the now. There is no 'this' and 'that’. It’s only 'this' and 'this’.
Here and now.
And the only way you understand this is if you experience it, and when you consciously live in the moment, it becomes a habit which then becomes your nature and it is a really fleeting happy feeling.
I’ve learnt that I’m a rational man only when I live in the moment, using my conscience to my benefit rather than letting it carry me wherever with no direction. And that to be better I have to live and understand this state better.
I’m a curious individual. Acknowledging and understanding how important knowledge and gaining more of it has only recently come to me and it is something due to which I’m asking myself questions. Questions ranging from how the hell are the two palms of yours in such sync, how can I be more rational and what went wrong with Crimea.
I just want to learn and soak up as much knowledge as I can, which is limitless because there is no cap on how much the brain can store, there have been no such research’s, and at the end of the day, knowledge is power. The more you know the better and I’m finally bringing out the curious kid inside to life.
I’ve been spending time on my own and I’ve started to enjoy my own company a lot. I feel I’ve become self-sufficient and I’ve also grown to understand how important your close friends are and how much they can influence you. And you have to be really wise about that.
At the end of the day, everyone is looking out for themselves in this materialistic world. And those that don’t, those that treasure peace, are happy with their own and appreciate how blessed we are to be a human being, to be born in this era, with these opportunities and freedom, to be a human, to just have the ability to manoeuvre our mind and work it to our best as well as working to benefit the world around us, surround yourself with those like-minded people. And although my friend circle has been cut down to like a mere seven people, I’m alive and happy.
After reading countless books and personal growth from different authors, different perspectives, I find a common link between what all they preach. And that common link is, to lead a joyous and fulfilled life you always have to look inward.
Every situation, every instance you’ve been in, whatever it is, however bad the external circumstances might have been, you can either choose to respond or react (reacting is reacting to your external circumstances, assigning them maximum value and responding is consciously responding to situations using your own ability and mind, assigning yourself with the maximum power.) And based on the same, your next few steps pan out.
If you get stuck in the external world and the reality that it offers as I did, you’re bound to get lost. Because in those moments your are prioritizing the external, and not focusing on what makes you essentially you, how you define yourself, your values, you don’t give yourself that necessary importance.
We can never control the external, it’s always going to be out of our hands so why beat our heads over something we can’t really do anything about and respond consciously and responsibly to our own thoughts, values and emotions.
I’ve realized I’m a simple guy, I don’t hold too many expectations of things and people, I just want to be treated well, have fun, love and grow. I don’t find worldly pleasures to be something to go gaga over. I enjoy the simplest and smallest things, how a cloud is shaped, how well our body mechanism works in perfect harmony without any guidance, how beautiful and bright every dusk is and the ever so beautiful sunset. I don’t have high standards, I’m content with the smallest thing. I’ve realized that I’m patient, in every different sense. With people, with my work, with my goals and aspirations, with myself, I give myself room to improve, a lot of room for mistakes, a lot because how else will you identify you’ve taken the wrong bend in the fork.
I’ve always told myself that I don’t know who I am, I’m still discovering myself, every and all aspects of myself. And to an extent, that is true. I still am, I’m still 20 and growing. And at the same time, that isn’t completely true, I do know myself, I have values, I have boundaries, I have needs, I have a conscience, so yes, in fact, I do know me more than anyone else. I just have to recognize that, consciously, and be the best I can be keeping those in my head.
Being responsible is the ability to respond to every situation consciously and this ability, which is in each of us is limitless. When we’re living in the moment, responding (and not reacting) to each situation that we come across consciously, going in with the intent of doing what is right, we are able to filter, sort and find the most logical and rational choice and those choices that are governed by pure honest logic are the best and most fruitful.
I’ve been on a quest to rediscover myself. And what I’ve learnt is that I am able and well, to see this transformation through. I just need to live in the moment, consciously. I don’t know where I’m headed, I have no idea what is in store for me and knowing that the world is so huge and there are 7.7 billion people, 7.7 billion different perspectives, is really exciting.
I know I’m on a path. Which path? I know it’s not following anyone else’s, I know it is my own, my own to construct and pave.
And where am I headed?
That has only one answer; onwards and upwards.
Alive and Happy- Ankit