I was in Mumbai a few months back, and during a conversation with Sumit over chicken (he is the only guy I know who loves chicken as much as I do), I declared that everything I do, I do it to brag about it. And I was not a wee bit ashamed to admit it. Because that is the truth!
The first time it hit me, I was cycling back home from Cochin. Now some of you might remember the first time I cycled to Cochin and then the cycling trip I took with my friend to Alleppey. The trip to Alleppey was epic. But looking back, the trip to Cochin was a mere 38.7 kms and I did it in about 2 hours. With my current physique I can do it every other day if I want to. Nothing much to brag about really.
Did that stop me from making a big deal of it? No!
So as I was saying, this evening last January, I was riding my bicycle back home. It was about 5:30, the roads were crowded (thanks to the Cochin metro rail construction) and I was losing daylight really quickly. By the time I reached Aluva I couldn’t see the point in all the risk I was taking. And then it hit me! If there is no story to brag about, I am not even motivated to do it. So I decided to leave it at Hari’s home for the night.
Now I am a risk taker (sometimes out of choice, sometimes out of pure ignorance and then sometimes when I convince myself that I have nothing to lose) and as it turns out the motivation is the glory that it brings. The motivation is that I will have a story to brag about in the end.
The most important question for me is the question of ‘why’. The ‘why’ of things should be the driving force behind everything we do. And knowing that is important.
I know its practically impossible to know the ‘why’ before we do everything. Sometimes we are put into situations where we have to do it and we do not have the chance to ask a question there. But for all the conscious choices we make, its critical to know why we are doing it.
I will tell you why the ‘question of why’ is important. First, it will give you the motivation to keep doing something even when going gets tough. Second, it will tell you when to stop doing something or when to give up. You will know what you want and where you want to be if you know why you are doing it.
Realizing that the ‘why’ behind everything I do was to brag about it didn’t sink into me easily. It made me feel shallow. It made me feel like I was desperate to have a story and make a name. Over few discussions with my friend during my journey, I was told that not everyone has a story (at least one that they can brag about) and that many people live and die without one and can still be happy about it.
But do I really want to be normal and happy? Hell No! I can’t be happy being normal anyway. For me, if it ain’t worth bragging about, it ain’t worth doing.
YES! I do shit for the glory of having done it. YES! I love to rub it on your face. YES! I am gonna keep doing it. NO! I don’t care what you think, I still have fun doing the shit I do!
As my bestest friend Namrata puts it, no matter what the motivation is, as you keep doing shit, the experience makes you a better you and you will know a bit more of yourself every single time.
The Art of Bragging. That should have been the sub-title for this blog.