Monday Morning Musings – I

Monday is here. It’s early morning. I feel a little exhausted after my walk. I want to sit down and write something quickly as my green tea boils in the kitchen. Here are some of the lessons I have learnt in life, some in the recent past and some over lifetime:

  1. Trust your gut instincts. Walk away from anything that gives you the heebie jeebies. Remember that gut feelings have come down to us through time, experience and evolution. When people use their instincts, they are heeding these cues built into their system over time.
  2. Never stop learning. Look, not everyone is cut out to be a research scientist. But the least you can do is to learn your own trade inside out. Buy some books, attend seminars, hang out with domain experts.
  3. Work is important, but lasting happiness stems from relationships. While you build your professional network, do take out time from your hectic schedule to be with your family – your spouse, kids, parents and old friends. They are your inner circle, the first party to come to your rescue when you are in trouble.
  4. Force yourself to do uncomfortable things. Wake up at 5 AM even if you don’t feel like it. Read that book you have been postponing for a long time. Park your car farther from the place where you usually do so that you have to walk more. Step out of your comfortable zone, it can ruin you.
  5. Nothing will ever be more important than your health. Nothing! Physical health shares a direct correlation with cognitive health. If you aren’t keeping fit, your mental health will suffer, too.
  6. Avoid the party or the social hubbub that forces you to put on a pretense. Actually, any situation that coerces you into putting on an unoriginal behavior is not worth the effort and time.
  7. Keep a plan for unknown unknowns ready. You don’t know when those black swan scenarios are going to strike.
  8. Don’t wait for the perfect timing. Our time on this planet is short. So do what you want to do like there is no tomorrow. Don’t wait for the perfect moments or perfect ideas, they might never arrive.
  9. Do something incremental every day. If you are working on a blog post, write 200-300 words even though you have to delete them later. Keep on adding to the bucket. Add on Monday, add on Tuesday, add on Wednesday and onward. You won’t notice the change since it happens in a gradual fashion. But over time, it will build up and give you fruitful results.
  10. Be a conscious listener. OK, I know this one is so cliched and so done to death. I can’t tell you the amount of ideas and insights you can get while being engaged in a deep conversation with someone. Hundreds of articles have been written about the importance of being a good listener yet so few still practice it.