What I learnt this summer….

I guess with each passing year and even passing day there is something new that we learn. I guess that’s cool right? It makes you sort of look forward to tomorrow and fills you with hope….

I guess this Summer I learnt a couple of lessons on my own or even through the lives and experiences of my friends, which will last me lifelong.

1. Love is fleeting: Well this one is a little serious but I guess I’m glad I learnt this from observing somebody else’s life rather than on my own. You never know when people fall out of love with each other. Apart from your parents and siblings, there is no guarantee that you will wake up one day and the ‘love of your life’ will love you back. That’s OKAY! It’s sad but it also teaches us to live in the present and enjoy every moment with our loved ones. You may be the person who falls out of love….it also means that our tolerance levels now are low and expectations of each other are more.

2. Rules of 2: I have a post elaborating on the 3 rules of 3. Here are 2 new rules of 2 –

  1. 2 times a week :- Basically this is something my friend Tina told me – if you meet a guy and sort of start hanging out – the maximum you need to or should see each other is twice a week for at least the first 2 months. While it may be a funny rule, I really think it makes sense. It gives you space to have your own life and see if you like the other person enough to want to include them.
  2. 2 week rule: I guess after the first 3-4 months of dating, if you sort of like somebody and are / not sure of where it’s going / how strong your feelings are – take 2 weeks off each other. At the end of 2 weeks I guess you would ideally know if you’ve missed them or not or if you life them enough or not.

3. People can change: – Imagine your boss is a wonderful human being and goes from that to a boss-zilla . Yes it can happen. Like people you love change (reason for most divorces) people you work with also do. So it’s important to keep some information confidential and to sort of have a plan B in hand.

4. Take it slow – This one is for those of us who think that 2 weeks into hanging out with a guy/girl we have found our soul mates. While we may be right ( and I hope for most of us that is the case) there is also a chance that we are very wrong. Take time to get to know the person. Hang out . Take it ‘slow’ . Emotional whirlwinds leave people devastated for months….so if you take your time to get to know the other person you may either realize how you will just be great friends and nothing more or at the very least learn to appreciate them for who they are.

5. Being friends post break up – Umm – not a good idea. This rarely works – at least not immediately. I guess you need at least 6 months to a year for both of you to be in a zone where it purely is just being friends and maybe even then it will never get to that point. It may be hard , but this is the time to leverage on friends and family. It’s OK to DISCONNECT and disappear for a while so you can figure things out and move on. If you bump into each other , you could always be cordial and polite but that doesn’t mean you need to be their new BFF.

6. Always have room for yourself – not literal space , or maybe even. I guess we should all have that one place that we call ‘our place’ which could be a cafe / the attic / our room / the park – a place where we can go and disconnect from the world or even go and think about what we want in life. I like to go to the cafe and blog or even go for a run in the park…

7. Save : Yes dear , I mean save money. I have realized over this past summer that financial security is a fundamental need. So basically you should ideally have 3-4 months worth of expenses as savings at any point and time. What if you’re laid off ? What if you just want to quit work and take off ? You should always have enough money (liquid) that you can do that.

8. Work hard but work smart : Yup get your work done as soon as possible and get out of work to live your life. In no way am I suggesting you slack or do a shoddy job. A job half complete will take you longer to fix so rather not. Yet , it makes no sense to sit and stare at the computer screen while you could be done with work and at the gym or cafe or even home with your loved ones…

9. There’s little that coffee or sangria can’t fix – Yup if you’re low these 2 things always work for me as quick fixes. Maybe also because I usually have fantastic friends who accompany me for both activities 🙂

10. Learn to change the tire alone : Imagine you are stranded in a quiet lane and you have nobody to call for help and the people who can help are about at least 30 minutes away,. Yes it can happen – it happened to me this summer. I guess lesson learnt and now I can change the tire on my own.

11. Speak up – If you’re not wrong and feel you are being wronged – Speak up or then shut up. No point complaining….fix your problems or learn to deal with them. Don’t be unreasonable but definitely learn to know when somebody is pushing the limits.

12. Keep fit – Nothing beats the confidence boost staying fit gives you. Knowing that you fit into your clothes and can eat what you like ( but work it off after) . The day I feel I am gaining weight I tend to feel low – it’s just something I do . It’s good in a way as it helps me focus on working out and balancing my work out – eating pattern.

13. A dog is definitely man’s best friend – Nothing beats the feeling of coming home to unconditional love. Having a dog in your life will ensure that you feel loved and warm always. Adopt a puppy today if you don’t have one. I know it is a lot of work but it is totally worth the effort.

14. Live each day as if it were your last – This Summer we lost a dear friend all of a sudden. I used to work with him and had been out of touch for a few months. He passed away on a Saturday morning – just like that , of cardiac arrest. Funny thing is I had emailed him on the Thursday that preceded the weekend . The whole event unfortunate as it was – because he left behind 2 young kids and a wonderful wife , made me realize how unpredictable life is….In small ways now I have begun ensuring I make most of every moment I get with my loved ones and in life….

15. Rainbows are beautiful – last weekend I saw my first rainbow, I was a little low that day but was on my way to watch a play at NCPA and while on the Mumbai Sea Link from Bandra to South Mumbai I happened to witness the most beautiful , natural phenomenon – A perfect Rainbow that framed the city I love so dearly. It’s funny that it took me 26 years to experience something this wonderful but it also made me realize that even the simplest and smallest of things can light you up – no matter what your mood.

Summer is my favorite season but this summer I was reminded that Life if Beautiful ! What has this summer taught you ?

* photo credits – We heart it 
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