Age 20 to 30 yrs was all about Over-Confidence, Impressing people by over doing things, Flirting, Randomness, Eating everything served in the Lunch Buffet 🙂 etc.
The next 10 i.e. age 30-40 yrs in summary were all about Confidence, Work-Alcoholism (Did some 80+ Events every single year), Wealth Building, Power, Kursi Ki Peti baandhiye & then whatever time remained after doing these- on Spirituality, Helping People, Mom, Ritika (wife) & Atharv (my son)- not in the same order. All this while, I was figuring out some really important life lessons as I lived my life forward but understood it backwards. Wish I had known some of them sooner.
Just when I was to turn 40; God blessed me (us) with the choicest blessing – Arya (the first girl child in our family in many generations). Thank you. Thank you God & Gurus for not only Arya but for keeping me luckier than I am capable in work, fitness & much more. I feel like I am your special child & daily feel your benevolence in all aspects of my life. Nearing 40 – we also settled in our own home in India’s most beautiful city- Chandigarh. The city a person chooses to settle in can have a silent but an overwhelming influence on everything that he becomes (Environment is bigger than will power waala Funda).
As I turned 40; here are my ten life secrets I wish I had figured out sooner. I learned them by trying very hard to be a good student of Life & Living Better.
1. Meditation. Just Do it !
I wish I had started practising it in 20s or even in my 30s. I would have been 10x in my life. I can vouch. Meditation amplifies the good things inside you many fold. e.g. I found my spontaneity to have increased multi-fold in my Events after I started meditating.
I realized no one else but I am my own biggest enemy. Reason: – I do not do what I plan to do but I end up doing what my momentum makes me do. People have different kinds of momentums (vritis) in their lives: Work obsession momentum, relationship addictions momentum, over speaking & socializing momentum or others. And it is very difficult to break momentum. It is a deep rooted vriti (tendency). The only thing which can help is the regular habit of deep meditations. It will slow you down and take care of your momentum beautifully. Without slowing down; you cannot conquer your wrong momentum with discrimination alone.
Contrary to the popular belief, meditation is not for people in 50s or for those who want to become monks. It is super pertinent for those in their teenage, 20s, 30s or 40s – people who want to uncomplicated and give their life their very best. For last 2 years, I unfailingly meditate twice a day & nothing, nothing in my first 40 years gave me as much happiness than those days when I could meditate with dhyaana. If you want to know ‘How to meditate’, pls write to me at ag(at)akashgautam(dot)com. I will tell you how. No fee. All Glee 🙂 … It is one of the biggest life secrets you can figure out for your ownself.
2. Be very Happily Married. Do everything to achieve that.
The biggest worldly bliss in life (in & after) 30s is a ‘Happy Married Life’ & a partner who is genuinely a partner. It makes up for every other deficiency. Lack of it leads to every other deficiency. Create 100% moments with your family- that’s my deep, secret life learning. The time that i really spend with Atharv and Arya is the real time.
I realized that one can have a real cool life without posting pictures of it on SM. The best vacations at the most exotic places did not renew me as much as the lazy days at home playing ludo with my family. Ironic but we returned home more fatigued than rejuvenated after our vacations, from shopping malls, from anywhere out. Most stuff outside is over-hyped. Only slow, lazy vacations where we did not do much were the better vacations out of all. Possibly the problem is with me but YES this is what I deeply understood.
I also rue my initial years of marriage when I used to complain, criticize and demand from Ritika a lot. I realized later that repeated complaining rewires one’s brain to make future complaining more likely. Complaining might just become one’s default behavior then. Scary!
Do everything to ensure that you have a beautiful marriage. Killing your ego will be the first step towards that. People who ultimately find happiness in their marriage, do not find it from their partners (one another). It always comes from within them. Adding depth to my married life rather than seeking temporary fulfillments from each other or outside is my secret learning.
3. Flirting is fun but not good. Just not good.
It consumes one’s time, vitality and good karma as well. Normally when money and power come; they bring along stares, glares and wantonness. Sexual liberation (which people call basic freedom) will always lead to temporary fulfillment & never to exponential happiness. We (at times even after marriage) look for partners who can make us feel alive right now. We do not want a boring life. The problem is that when this frenzied excitement fades; we find that we are just not prepared for the mundane. Flirting and going from one relationship to another (seeking something new in every new) is not evolution. It is cheapness.
Stay loyal. Stay Committed. Do not be over-sensible, super-logical or basically scared to love or commit. Learn to love madly. From the trivialities of your work life- save time, intention & energy for deeply loving the people in your life: I learnt this secret the hard way.
4. Minimalism is THE way.
My energy is limited. At 40 it seems all the more limited :). The deep learning is: – to defend and save my limited energy vehemently. And use it on agendas, people and things which exactly matter. And not dissipate my energy and time through moods, emotions, likes, dislikes and especially on people who do not (or would not) matter. I wish if there were a refund on the time that i wasted on people (who do not matter); I would beat Warren Buffet & Bill Gates together (combined). So, instead of focusing on 20 Goals, milestones & agendas and missing most of them; i will focus on 5 and try and achieve all 5. Being minimalistic is my deep & secret learning here.
5. Become a Modern Monk
My deep learning- ‘Do not be too much into friends, relatives, TV, News, Whatsapp, Instagrams etc’. What we gained by not having a TV at Home. I don’t need the 90% of the news which comes on TV. Call me anti-national or less patriotic but i don’t need to listen to Arnab or Modi or Rahul or Kejriwal. I have enough syllabus in my life. Do not want to get consumed by the new drama that media offers each day. It is not worth.
Someone said it beautifully –
‘Zindagi aur Maut to khuda ke haath mein hai. Insaan ke haath mein to sirf Mobile Phone hai’.
Our gravestones are never going to have a LIKE button- why do not you get it. After 20 yrs, i would not want to regret spending my very precious life mostly staring at my mobile/ desktop screens and on those 4-5 Apps. When I mind my own business; I find my life to be way less stressful. Become a Modern Monk Akash- my deep most & secret learning at 40.
6. I only lost by Reacting
By losing temper or by reacting or by making people feel inferior to me- I have never ever gained ANYTHING. Never. Ever. Gained anything. Even on all those occasions when I thought I was totally right and righteous too – I only lost by reacting. Do not remember even one single instance when by losing out i gained anything. I deep learnt that if you have to defeat someone; make him ANGRY. He will do bull shit stuff 🙂
7. Physically Fit & not Emotionally Hit
It not only increases my limits of physical endurance but also creates super abundant energy for my diurnal activities. On days when I miss my fitness – I just drag through the day like a lazy, emotional bum. Death & growing old is mandatory. But staying Fit is totally optional. What’s the point of you sitting in a 40 lakh+ car with a close to 40 inch waist?
Buddy, If you are always feeling that anxiety, chronic fatigue and are losing temper often- you desperately need to go and detox physically and mentally. A few months before I turned 40; I shed 13 kg weight (85 to 72 kgs) within 3 months. I had never done anything huge for any lady in my life. I did this for my daughter Arya. Wanted her to see a fit Dad and not an Amoeba like father.
8. Learn How to make lots of Money (Financial Skills)
Earning Money is easy. Anyone can. But learning how to make it grow big or how to create assets which super grow themselves is THE thing to be learned.
I learnt deep that the fastest way to lose money is to try to earn quick money. Have patience as you build wealth. If you cannot learn wealth creation in these years of your life, then you do not deserve it too.
Our domestic helps for e.g. seldom become rich because their mental engineering does not let them see big opportunities. Their world is the only world they know. All that they are looking for is basic MONEY and SECURITY, so that’s all they GET. I could extend the same logic from my domestic helps to most of my friends and relatives. They are doing the same and are never on a look out for bigger opportunities.
See it is simple – Everyone works hard for money but if you learn super financial skills -the more wealth you will have in your life. Study, meet people better than you, research fine and acquire that deep financial intelligence. And financial intelligence is not becoming the Rambo of the risky stock market. It is much more diversified than that. How to get rich by becoming money wise- 9 subtle secrets
9. Just do not do what everyone else is doing
Have the guts to find out what everyone else is doing & do exactly the opposite. This is my deep most life lesson as I turned 40. My career hues and directions are diametrically opposite to what I studied and from where I come from.
See – everyone can think out of the box for a minute or an hour or max a day. The question remains- ‘Can you think out of the box for lot of years continuously’? If you can; you’ll not only become super rich but also super healthy, happy and successful too.
Do not go by trends. Have the balls to create your own path and tread it too. Your self-doubt and laziness alone are preventing you to connect superbly with the joy and abundance in your one life. Energetically start living your life in the realm of new possibilities & then see the MAGIC.
10. And my most beautiful learning is –
Out of all my learnings; my biggest learning at 40 is that the most important time is NOW and the most important person is the one in front of me. ‘The time is NOW’ & not what will come in future. So, enjoy that meal very slowly & fully with family, drench in that joy of present moment, laugh out loud & learn to be in the NOW. Learning ‘How to Live 100% is the biggest learning to be had in this life and the earlier you learn this- ‘the more the juice of life you’ll savour’.
Most people leave vacuous lives because they there is no conscious decision to build. Clarity of thought will never come to you on its own. You’ll need to decipher it by 1) slowing down & knowing & then by 2) taking massive action.
I turned 40. But strongly believe that my best is yet to come. And my best will come only when I have a brilliant & incisive PHILOSOPHY & I apply it with strict discipline for a good number of years. Everything around & inside (my vritis) will force me away from discharging this PHILOSOPHY (doing the RIGHT things). It will only be the strength of my conviction about my PHILOSOPHY which will help me achieve all my Goals in Life. Nothing else will.
Thank you for your time in reading my learning story,