I met someone on Quora almost four months back. And, we both got so attached that we continue to bond over lengthy phone calls once in a while. I treat her like an elder sister and in return get the pleasure of being treated like a brother. That’s a relation that I otherwise didn’t get naturally in life, as I happen to be an only child hailing from a nuclear family.
So, in one of our recent talks, she apprised me about how she had been laden and overwhelmed with work at her new office she joined almost a month back. She went on to add that she was further exasperated for she had joined the position as there was a pretty good chance that she would be flying to UAE for handling the operations of the organization. Unfortunately, they decided to send someone else.
Here someone from the higher echelons of the organization sitting in a big office was taking decisions about how s/he could twist and operate her/his employees to reap maximum profits and benefits. The person was too busy aiming at achieving his own aspirations to pay heed to the desires and aspirations of his employees.
And, I am not blaming her/him at all. That is how most of the corporates and business houses function today. One man or a handful of people at the helm of the organization create plans, blueprints and device pathways and policies to drive their workhorses towards achieving certain milestones whipping and lashing on them to run faster and deliver more. But, when this happens, another thing goes on in the sidelines-
A sizable chunk of the employees doesn’t get ample opportunities to prove themselves and live up to their actual potential on the forefronts that matter to them. And, that is exactly the situation what has been underscored in the situation here. And, having read the book, Choose Yourself by James Altucher, as soon as she ended sharing her misery with me, I began to share with her that I gleaned from that book.
It’s not just about someone stuck at a job. It’s about life. People take decisions for you and you follow them without much thought. Then one day the epiphany strikes. And, then one realizes that this is not what they really wanted to do in life. They realize they foolishly squandered so much of time, energy and intelligence that were not focused on making them happy. Rather, all of their efforts and resources utilized were channelled into fulfilling someone else’s agendas.
When you hand over the control of your life to someone else and allow them to make decisions for life and future you are always going to suffer. You are the only one who can actually take unbiased and legitimate decisions for your life that are going to decide your future for the best.
Handing over that privilege to anyone else- Be it your well-wishers like parents, or your boss, friends, girlfriend or whosoever- is only going to leave you more miserable than you would have been otherwise. So, why not rather take some extra time, maybe think a little more, and ultimately make your decisions strengthened by the base of your own desires.
She got confused. She interjected and asked me- How do I take back that decision making power from my boss then? After all, it’s my job and I get paid for making her/his wishes come to life. I follow her/his orders, and in turn, they ensure a steady sum of money flows into my account every first week of the month.
To that, I replied with vigour-
I don’t know how you are going to do it. Find your own way. But, make sure you take back that power of decision making from the concerned person. However, I knew that if I didn’t give her a head start on how to make it happen, probably she won’t do it and would end up succumbing to the miseries of life and job anyway. So, I showed her one path she could follow.
Why do a job at all? Become an entrepreneur! Create a venture of your own. Do something on your own about something that you have the knowledge, power and interest to make a business around. I know that this may sound overwhelming and too much of change, but why not! You aren’t living a happy and desired life in the present scenario anyway.
What you are doing is only filling someone else’s coffers, while you end up with a measly sum of money in the pockets which makes you pass on the power of decision making for your life to some other person later who would be ready to pay more for it in the future. Those who didn’t get it, I meant a change of job from one organization to another.
You work your butt off from day to night, and they still find a reason to grouse over your work and dedication. Why give anyone that power to belittle you and your potential! That’s absurd. Furthermore, you are well educated in your domain, with a plentitude of experience.
So, you can begin something on lines similar to your current organization if something else may sound too arduous to you. When I uttered those lines, she instantly interrupted me- But my current company so huge! How will I compete with it?
So, I riposted- Who asked you do start a clone company? Rather, do something that uses your understanding from that system and your acquired knowledge and experience. You have an enormous pool of those resources and each of those are your underutilized assets. So, make them count!
I also added- I know that you can’t make such a big shift in your life in a day. Neither am I asking you to do that. But, a gradual movement towards taking back that power day by day for a year seems much more doable. So, go for that. Acquire contingency funds and money to start something of your own slowly over a year, while also working for your own selves on the sidelines.
This one year would be you practising and mastering the art of making decisions for yourself. That way you would slowly become much more protected from the risks as you will have a significant sum of money saved, and you will be ready to catapult yourself to the position of the decision maker of your life. You will be then the boss and the CEO of your sanctum. Now, that you will be working for yourself, make it large!
Having said all of that, it was time to motivate her. So, I went on to add the following to our conversation-
The most important thing about this being- No one will have the power to snatch from your hands the opportunities to prove your mettle. You will be able to do what makes you feel empowered and do things that add more to your living and learning. You will be someone who a number of people will be looking up to. Doesn’t that pique your interest?
You will be a self-made leader which commands respect. Why would you deserve respect? Because you would have learnt to control and lead your own mind and brave it all that stop you from moving ahead. Because you made the change in your life that millions and billions of others aspire for but less than a few handful dare to realize and even fewer succeed in making that large.
To be true, I don’t know if she is going to do it and take back that power of decision making that she rented to her bosses for a paltry sum of money compared to what she was putting into the boss’s coffers. I don’t know if I made any difference in her life.
But, here is one thing that not many people know about. She was not the only one who has had that talk with me. I tell the same thing to a whole lot of people. There are some of my batch mates and juniors at college who I tell the same thing every now and then.
I regurgitate the same thoughts to some of the people on Quora who have ever asked for my perspective on similar lines. And, I share the same thoughts with even my Maa and a bunch of cousins. I have no way to gauge how many of those people have ever been actually impacted by my thoughts by even a tad bit.
But, what I know is that maybe one day one of those hundred people I shared these thoughts with might actually go for it and end up making it really large in his/her life. And, the chances would be pretty damn high that the person may remember me then and may express gratitude to me for waking up the lion in them. And, that day, I will have a smile on my face and may be some tears in my eyes. That day, I will have made my mark in life.
Decide whatever path you wish to follow and then chart your own path for it. Decide what you want to be and then choose for yourself how you are going to make it a reality. If in your path to success and desires there exists anyone who can stop you or make decisions that can impact your trajectory to success, then get rid of those people. Just struck them off your path.
But, of course saying things or typing down wisdom words is an easy deal. What matters is how you make it a reality in your own life. I staunchly believe in that philosophy. So, if I am trying to preach someone to take decisions for themselves, I also must prove to the reader that I too am practising the same tenet. So, here is how I am trying to make that happen.
I personally intend to be an entrepreneur in the near future. I wish to be a job creator rather than being a job seeker. I see problems around me and I intend to solve them. And, I have the mindset to build a business and revenue model around those problems and make it count in life.
My Maa wants me to get a job instead. And, later once I have a stable life, only then go for something of my own. I decided to listen to her but ultimately decide for myself. Same goes for a few of my college mates and teachers as well who are aware of my intentions.
The concerned college mates tried to pull me down citing the statistics that say 85% of entrepreneurs fail in the very first year of operations. The teachers and mentors told me to focus on the placements as a steady paycheck is the key to leading a normal and happy life.
I listened to them and then ultimately decided for myself- A paycheck or a normal life is not what my father and mother brought me up for. They brought up a great child who has a brain of his own which has acquired a lot of knowledge and experiences of his own to have a rationale to discern what is right for him.
And, with growing age, I continue to learn more and earn more of experiences to master my decision making. And, when I needed a guide, I made sure I had the best one. I began to follow the lives of people like Elon Musk, a man who did it all on his own. He made it large in his life by choosing himself over the entire goddamn world! He had the single tenet to live by-
Never let anyone else take the decisions for your life, else there will be much more chances that you won’t like the future you will get. So, make choices for yourselves. If you succeed, you will know how to repeat the success making process for yourself. If you fail, you will know what can create hurdles in your way to be successful.
So, either way, when you make decisions for yourselves, you would end up closer to realizing the success you have envisaged for yourself. So, make it large in life. And, do that for yourself, by yourself.
Being my own master intrigues me. Devoting myself to realizing my own thoughts and dreams imbues me. Becoming a man who would inspire many others is the thought that drives me. And, I intend to make it all happen by doing just one thing- I am never letting anyone make decisions for my life no more.
Those are the words I told myself after I was done reading the book by James. And, after learning from Elon Musk my power to live by that tenet has only emboldened. And, life could not have been better. And, with that said, I close the post hoping the post added some power and punch to the reader’s life.
Wishing the earnest reader all the success and greatness they have envisioned for themselves.