***** Zero Error Syndrome *****


I was once told, “Work always turns out the best under pressure.” I second it.

Because, ‘no pressure’ often leads to complacency and, a lax in attitude, not for everyone, but for a majority. And looking closely, it actually works. The margin for error calculated is low. Exactly why deadlines are there to remind that Time is of the essence and, punctuality comes first, leaving perfection behind in the second place.

Well, that is exactly where I will stop. Punctuality side stepping perfection is precisely where I will agree to disagree with what I began my opening lines with. Don’t remember? Read the first line.

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So, when I started my stint as a content writer, I was introduced to an ocean of material and, a typhoon of words! All my confidence of being able to write took a beating when I took about a week to write my first article – Lyme Disease Rash! (YES, THAT WAS THE FIRST ARTICLE I WROTE AFTER JOINING) and, it took me a week to understand why it was horrendously difficult to write short and crisp and, ridiculously effortless to write long long nonsense!

The first lesson I learned there was,

1. There is a deadline.

2. And, then, there is perfection.

3. And, striking the balance between the two is every content writer’s nightmare.

We had to write minimum three articles per day. And it is here, I noticed that while deadlines were matched a hundred percent, the perfection always fell short by a credible percentage.

For me, ever since I have never ever been satisfied with the outcome of my thoughts on my word pad. It is like that annoying feeling in the back of my head that screams “God! This could have been way better!” It is that feeling after writing the dreaded board exam when you suddenly remember, “Hell! I could have answered that alternatively too!”

There have been nights when I would be awake writing a 400 word article on cloud computing, trying to pitch in as much as possible from the seamless web of information I am provided with. It used to be crazy. Because, There would always be some point, albeit minor that missed the eye but, will surely catch the hawk of a client ! Even after getting the blessings of client, my brain was somehow rewired to believe that, “Damn! This could have been better! Just needed a day more!”

On certain days, the regret of not having given that 110 percent was greater than all those sleepless nights, days of utter neglect towards family and, many missed moments of being able to watch mesmerising sunrises and sunsets! Sad. To me, that is sad indeed. And, I perhaps was a very very sad person then. Sadly.

It was at that time, my father noticing my agitation towards certain things not working in a certain manner I wanted, advised me, “You, my daughter are falling into the trap of Zero Error Syndrome. It seems good initially but, let me pass on something that Life taught me. Zero Error Syndrome is a termite. It will eat you up. Don’t let it play your mind. You can strive for the best. And, you must! But, there is always a fair 10 percent chance that things may not work the way you want them to. And, the ability to accept that there is a force above us that also has its hidden agendas, will help you understand why perfection is an illusion. Sometimes, it is a huge palace of illusions!”

Over the past one year, the lesson has been made crystal clear to me. Maybe, because I have been subjected to situations and idiosyncracies of people where Life taught me to be in control even as nothing was in control. My health issues were another story altogether. Our family doctor back in Bharuch took a look at me and, said bluntly, “You need to relax. And, you need to breathe. It is perfectly ok to not being able to get the outcome you desire only because you gave a 100 percent and, Murphy dropped inunivited. Because Life is not perfect either. And, perhaps the reason, the only reason why it is beautiful too!”

Did the pep talk help? I would say, with some medications. But, it did.

And, surprisingly when I found myself tolerating murder of creative freedom and, somehow sailing along with a team, totally disillusioned with the leadership, I found my tolerance. Ironically, I found my tolerance where I least expected to find. It was as though I found it when I was on the verge of unleashing beast within and, suddenly the beast calmed down by itself. A faint whisper was there – For people and seasons, both change for better, for worse. 😉 And, timings are always a surprise!

So, where did that tolerance come from? Tolerance, a word I have hated since childhood. I have wondered given all those heated arguments I had with my father then, every time he advised me, “How did I tolerate situations and people from last year? How?”

But then, I am my father’s daughter. And, I put on my TamBrahm hat and figured that out! IT took me a year of circus I never wanted to be a part of, to understand that even in a circus, there is always a margin for error, an error that can never be predicted or, controlled.

And then, we are humans at the end of the day. They say, even a human symmetry is skewed. The left side and the right side of our body are not exactly symmetrical.

That explains why Zero Error Syndrome can cause so much of pain? Because even though one can always attempt to bite more than one can chew. Sadly, digestion is a totally different story!😁

P.S : I have nothing against perfectionists. Perfection is an important goal to achieve. But what worth would it be if one has to bleed and worse, cut others for it?

Something to ponder over.

People are not assets. People are just people.


There is a hair line difference between being good and, being ambitious at being good. The difference is so subtle that its presence is perhaps as good as null on the surface. However, the gravity sets in once the line is crossed over. And, then there is no looking back.

So, there is always this carrot and stick method in corporate that set many memes and trolls in motion when people having succumbed to the carrot just wanted to vent the frustration through trolling their bosses. Dilbert series was the best as it trolled bosses as the demons with two horns and, a lashing tail. However, that is what happens when you allow the same carrot and stick method to usurp you each time. Apparently, our brains are wired in a way that we believe that we have to continue chasing the elusive carrot because someday, we will take a bite of the fleshy juicy carrot, even if it is in the afterlife! See, if you knew how brains were washed, rinsed and dried and then, soaked in a new detergent solution of “oh! You are so good! What will we do without you?”, you would have now understood where I am getting at, with this!

The statement I cringe over again and again is when people say the unspeakable, “Oh! HE/SHE is an asset! ASSET TO THE ORGANIZATION! Totally! You just can’t let him/her go!” Trust me, I have very good control over my gag reflexes but, there are times the person saying this is oblivious to the fact that he or she might someday get splashed with ‘you know what!’ 😖😖😖😖😖

So, each time I hear someone say that to me, I constantly remind myself, “girl! Take a deep breath. You are a human. You are NOT an asset! You are a human! and, a human that is most susceptible to making mistakes.. now… Repeat with me….” and the dramatic soliloquy continues…

Compliments are neutral feelers and, sometimes do more damage than constructive criticism. And, if you keep your ears and eyes open with a tight leash on tongue, it won’t take you a second to figure out if the compliment is genuinely hinted at your growth or, is laced with ‘khada chamach’ kind of sweetness to actually attack your focus. And that is when, the statement “you are an asset!” hits you like a punch. Because you know now why beasts of burden are called ‘beasts of BURDEN’!

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So when a human is equated with being an asset, it rarely strikes the world of the damage that has been done to the human brain through the Trojan of compliments. For the ones hungry for compliments and success alone, the malware of hidden bugs filled with never ending lists of formalities and obligations are planted effortlessly. And when the time comes, the bugs germinate and rewire the brain to believe that somewhere the idea of being shown the carrot itself was a novelty and that, should the carrot be denied, it is fate accompli.

Convenient right?

Each one of us gets good leaders or, feudal lords depending on our own karma. Yes, I call the latter, ‘FEUDAL LORDS’.

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So, when you are led by a good mentor, you not only feel human, you also work towards being humane, humane towards every life around
you. You learn many things in the most effectual manner. You learn to question freely, knowing that your questions are enjoyed with an open mind. You also learn that compliments are not given away freely. But, timely encouragements are. And, the best lesson you learn about life, is the perks of being innately good to people. Respect is earned with almost no effort. And, even a mutual disagreement or, a difference of opinion does not cause rift, but opens new channels of perspective.

Because, a good leader does NOT treat his team member as an asset. HE treats him or her as a plant that needs space, creative freedom and, a lot of trust to bloom. HE treats him or her as the protege that will one day ascend the same or a higher ladder of success. He wishes him or her good !

And then, when you get ‘Feudal Lords’ as your leaders/mentors, there are essentially two things to accept –
1. One, this too shall pass, albeit like a kidneystone.
2. This phase will either brainwash you into developing a feudalistic mindset or, will make you more bullet proof than before towards gut feeding tapeworms disguised as people.

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The only issue with the having the latter as mentors is, the disillusionment of being treated as an asset and, NOT as a human that lives and breathes. And the more such ‘compliments’ come, it is important to have the pep talk with self every now and then – ‘You are NOT an asset. You are a human. And, you have every right to decide how your talent needs growth. Let it NOT become a channel that feeds the greed and ego of your employer. Let it be something that feeds your self esteem and passion that makes you an authority in oneself to know how it must be put to use.”

Because,

Assets are despensible. Humans are NOT!

Period.

*** Life – The disturbingly silent mentor ***


*** Life – The disturbingly silent mentor ***

When I was a child, I loved and hated mangoes at the same time. I loved mangoes for its sweet taste and, hated it because I did not want to get my hands sticky, scooping the delectable pulp off from the skin. And if the mangoes are finely ripe, even the skin tastes good but then, I was not quite the ‘hard working’ child I was expected to be. Bring me the mangoes cubed and iced, I would have. Else, nope. Nope. Nada.

I was in my teens then. Yet to know what all I was capable of even though I assumed I could live in Jupiter (a crazy fantasy I developed since may’s primary years). Surreally, it is also my astro planet, which was pointed out by a near one. Well, that is not the cruz of what I am trying to convey. The point is, at the time, I was entirely oblivious of myself as a being. Sometimes, I also feel a slight regret of not having connected with myself a little more as I am able to understand today.

Blame it on the age.
Blame the hormones!
Blame the academic pressures!

Well, that is how the reptellian brain feels good by blaming on stuff around and within. Maybe, the reptellian brain was at its peak then. It was also an age where sensitive trumped sensible. And, the phase continued into my adulthood and then, even for some time post marriage. And, then some life altering changes came along.

It is absolutely strange that life teaches you many things through every experience. One has to listen. Because, life does not impose unlike people. Life whispers. First gently, then again, more gently. And then, when the lesson has to be nailed, Life moves with the stealth of Black Mamba and strikes. More often than not, the strike is a rude shock than a pleasant surprise. And, the human brain instead of introspecting wonders, ‘what did I do to deserve this?’

Well, the feeling of instant gratification and slow manifestation of woes can also be linked with the concept of credit and debit. Like, take a look at your bank account on the first day of every month. The fat balance is like a platter of delectable gamey dishes in front of a famished human from Somalia. (No offence intended)

But then, there are the Shylocks called electricity & water bills, housecleaning, school and tuition fees, drycleaning, the million taxes that somehow find their way like termites in a pest controlled home et al. And, if shopping were to be included…..well….lesser said, the better. Which is exactly why my father and, my husband (both loyal disciples of Warren Buffet) keep reminding me – “If you spend on things you don’t need, there will come a day, when you have to sell what you need”

I loved the statement and, loved to hear from the men I adore and love. The statement has a binding effect on me especially, when my father once added to this above mentioned statement in the middle of a heated discussion I had with him over maintaining relations a decade back, “it is not just being cautious with Money. One must tread with same caution in maintaining good relations too. Maintain cordiality in all relations as much as possible. I repeat as much as possible because a hundred percent cordiality is hypothetical. For, You never know people completely to judge them. And, if you have seen a not good side of people, it only means you have not yet gotten the opportunity to see the good side of them. Because, life is also all about credits and debits, cheques and balances with impeccable timings. Even the best man will have terrible flaws and, a written off man will probably turn around and, stun the world.”

The wisdom of it was one elusive cat as, my father had definitely seen and experienced life much much intensely than me, given the age.

So, the predicament is born.

For, Life has a tendency of teasing, like it always does.

At times, it checks to see if you care about debiting the ancestral good will by getting intimidated by the vanity and arrogance in people around.

At times, it prods you, pokes you to see if you can function well in a claustrophobic space where creative freedom is curbed and, unsound minds work to create a cacophony that makes you gag.

At times, it even leads you into situations where your work and passion is perhaps utilised and, even exploited by conniving minds that step on graves to earn credits, duly yours but, stolen.

In those moments, Life tests your resilience. It tests your urge to scratch the itch. It makes you feel intense anger, intense morose, intense pain, intense hate. And then, it tests your spine by breaking you. In Mario Puzo’s style it asks, “Do you have the balls?” Meaning, do you have it in you to take a chance to lose too much on a matter of principle or honour?

Well, the test continues. For, humility is often seen as weakness as, arrogance is perceived as strength. But then, Life works with its partner in crime, the Time!

https://thesagittariusthinker.wordpress.com/2019/06/07/life-the-disturbingly-silent-mentor/

The best lines I ever read from since the gazillion times I read this book!

Saturation Point


#NarayaniInPonderLust

#FleetingThoughts

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Summers are usually the most loved for mangoes and, most hated for what makes those mangoes delectable, the heat! And then, follows the pre monsoon schedule that arrived with unrelenting humidity and, decreasing tolerance to it.

So, have you ever felt that wave of wet air slap your face and, leave it profusely sweating and, absolutely slimy post which, you lose all motivation to even bathe? Science calls it the saturation point where the air gets so humid that, you almost beg the Rain God to give some respite. Well, seasons have their own agendas. And then, the first shower always makes the heart go…. ‘Ghanana…Ghanana…ghir…ghir…aye.. badra……”

Well…watch closely and, one would relate the same saturation point to the mind’s ability to keep up with the pace of the world…

Like, has it ever attacked you out of no where?
That feeling of being absolutely done with archaic patterns that refuse to leave your lives?
Saturated with zero creativity? Overwhelmed by less fruitful routines?
Disgusted with stagnancy?
Exhausted by too many diversions leading to a distant goal post which is not even clear at the moment?

Saturation point.

It is real.

It is a point where the ability to withstand conflicts slowly gets replaced with scissor like appendages that are steadily cutting off those puppeting strings…

It is like years of seismic movements underneath the layers of human mind that are now propelling towards a bigger effect, yet unknown.

Perhaps, the current phase right before hitting the saturation point is like chrysalis where, everything seems a gamble. There is a strong chance of things working out as good as are the chances of them not working out. A new layer of complexity is busy preparing itself to birth into a world that it is not trained to imbibe.

The beginning will be a walk through many quicksands and tsunamis….But then, that is how beginnings ought to be. Even a baby learns the science of Gravity first and, walking later…crying first to open up the lungs and, talking later…

There is an extreme form of pain in the saturation point. So much that at times, the prayer to free from stagnancy becomes more potent than the prayer to sail through it.

But then, Truth is constant. And that is, saturation point is a constant too. One cannot escape it, or beat it. One has to experience it for reasons best known to the universe.

Maybe, saturation point may not be the villain it is portrayed to be.
Maybe, it is disguised as a villain, the elusive red herring to lead one into roads seldom taken, to embrace challenges seldom visible and, to know that it is just the birthing part that will be most painful.
Because once, the newborn persona is out, it will be a long way again until the next saturation point arrives.

Until then, saturation point serves a larger purpose, much hated but, much needed.

Maybe, it is exactly what each one of us needs to look forward to the next junction in the train of life…

#AtoZBloggerChallenge2019 (End of April)


Here is a recap for all those who missed reading the posts…

Week 1:

A – Art

B – Belief

C – Crowd

D – Dreams

E – Emotions

F- Fall

Week 2

G – Grafitti

H – Hell

I – Irony

J – Juggernaut

K – Kindred

L – Life

Week 3

M – Mettle

N – Night

O – Order

P – Pandemonium

Q – Quest

R – Random

Week 4

S – Solitude

T – Truth

U – Underdog

V – Vengeance

W – Water

X – Xylophone

Week 5:

Y – Yardstick

Z – Zero

Z – Zero


There is something liberating about the number zero…

Is it its nonchalance towards success and failure, I do not know…

For it comes with the catch – What goes up will come down some day …..

But all the while maintaining its its peace & calm, unfazed!

For Life sooner or later, does come in a full circle…

With alternating thorny patches with rose bushes – some mean, some subtle!

This is where Zero signifies Life irrespective of its value…

For Time decides the context for every situation that weeds new…

So life says – Keep calm and keep doing what you were brought to this world to do…..

And your good will and deeds shall decide where the ZERO shall place itself for you.

Y – Yardstick


Whatever is visible to eye eludes the mind…..

Whatever is understood by mind eludes the eye…

For Truth is a rubix cube rotating on its whim…

Each dimension burns bright for a short while before it dims…

And, that is enough to give birth to colored opinions and, how!….

As each in the world is defiant that his is the ultimate truth, ‘holier than thou’!

Every vision is an outcome of what the eyes perceive.

As the lines whisper silently…Neither you are wrong, nor me’

There are a million versions of every truth that is discovered..

Even as each has many facets yet to be uncovered..

But humankind is a bizarre combination of being naive and arrogant…

No wonder there aren’t much to choose from, saints or sychophants?

Remember the 6 blind men and one elephant?

Touching parts of it and, every part felt true, yet different?

Life is a puzzling paradox with many clones of truth to pick…

For each views it with his own yardstick!