We will start with a prayer.
Sahanaavavatu sahanaubhunaktu,Sahaveeryam karavaavahai, Tejaswinavadheethamastu maavidvishaavahaihi
AUM, Shanthi Shanthi Shanthi hi, AUM,
Shri Gurubhyo Namaha, Hari Aum
We are very happy to be with you all. I am Adi, this is my wife Smrithi. The introduction that she just gave looks a bit flamboyant. We are normal people. Are we not? See in fact, I even have hair like you (Laughter). She asked me to tie it, so it is like this (Laughs). The reason why we start with a prayer is very simple. Just as we set the outer environment conducive to the purpose at hand, it is very very important to fix the inner environment. It shuld be conducive right? Now you can have an outer AC. But inwardly it can be all like really hot and humid …inwardly. Many of us face this. That is called peace of mind. So it is very important to fix an AC inwardly as well right? So cultivating that inner environment appropriately is the role of prayer. Prayer sets the intention. Outer environment we set it through our engineering effort and action. Inner environment we cultivate through appropriate intentions and there are also tools. One of the most powerful and direct tools is a prayer. So as part of this prayer, what we…this is very simple. Sahanaavavatu means let us live together. Shanaubhunaktu, let us have food together, sahaveeryam karavavahai, let us put our energies together to work towards a common goal. Let us get illumined with knowledge together, tejaswinava dheetamastu. But in this process…what happens when we live together, work together, what typically happens? Conflicts happen. There is a rub-off, ego clash, and hence maavidvishavahai, may we not have any ill-feeling towards each other. And that is very critical, of you work in a…you have all done internships. You have been part of teamwork. You would see, it typically happens -“Hey, no! I did all the work. She did not do anything. What?! She is getting the credit.”
So many things happen, and it is very easy. But in the process what happens? Our inner environment is in shambles. It goes berserk and hence we lose our peace of mind. So maavidvishavahaihi. And hence, we set the intention, we invoke the feeling, may we not have any ill-feeling towards each other, because it is very easy. And hence we invoke the right inner environment for what purpose? So that actually we can march towards our own success, because success is very critical. Let’s say you put all your effort, is success gauranteed? Sure? No. Then what is the point in putting in effort? At least we give it a try.
Atleast we give it a try, yes. So there are multiple components, if we break it down, we see, our putting in effort is very very important but it is not just that “atleast we give it a try”. We give it a good try and powerfully well, that is the spirit. Otherwise it is like “hmm..Atleast I also give it a try “..(with no spirit) (Laughter). That is a different try.
We say shanthihi 3 times. You know why 3 times? These are called tapatreya, or 3 major sources of support, also that which can pose obstacles. So the first level of support that we seek, or peace or harmony that we seek is at the level of adi daivika. Adi daivika are the natural forces around us. If this (program) has to happen, there shoould be no natural calamity. See, regularly in summers we take students to Himalayas. So this June, we are taking about 70 students, college youth to Gangotri, Gomukh and then Yamunotri, so it is a glacial trek. You have been there? Oh not yet?! …so not yet…it is about 60 km of trek at an altitude of about 13,000 ft above sea level, in about 4 days time. So it is challenging in many ways. So we go there, anytime there could be landslide. Rains, gone! Snowfall, gone! Now, see here it is relatively stable and hence we don’t even care about it. Otherwise you will see the support of natural forces is so very important for even a single step to be successful.
Like for example, I (Smrithi) spent about 1 year in a small town in Italy. So this small town was called L’ Aquila. And this is on the earthquake belt. So atleast when I was there, for the period of 1 year, there were about 9 tremors in that place and in 2009, there was a major earthquake there and then many people lost their lives and so, even if there is a slight tremor, actually people become very panicky there. They tend to close down the shops, and then that is when we understood that these natural forces’ support is so important for us to perform our jobs regularly. That is so very critical.
In fact, others used to joke that I(Adi) let her go…she spent (time in L’Aquila) in 2010 and 2009 was a major earthquake. So people used to joke, “Okay..this is a good way to get rid of .…” (Laughter) But we have a very very good time together. We have been married for about 13–14 years now. That is not the reason, so you know now. But the support of the natural forces…we happened to interact with survivors from the 2004 tsunami. So when it struck the peninsular India, they were mentioning how everything was going fine. One moment, after that their lives are completely washed out! Their relatives are gone, everything about their lives has been changed. They somehow survived. It is pure luck. That is when we start understanding the role of adi daivika.Or the natural forces. So at that level, we invoke for those forces to be harmonious, peaceful, supportive of our endeavour. That is also a concrete recognition
The second level of harmony or support, we call it adi bhautika. Adi bhautika is the people around us, the social circumstances around us, adi bhautika. Now this is the most critical challenge that most people face. So let us say, you didn’t want to be here, but your parents wanted you to do MBA, how would it be? There would be a tremendous inner conflict. It will be like “Aaaaargh! Why am I here?” Every moment will be a struggle. Even for a simple assignment, you may end up getting philosophical questions. Right before an exam, it will be like “What is the point in life? What is the purpose of my existence?” In fact, the questions that we put in the description are the ones that you ask before the exams (Laughter).
So adi bhautika is the people around you. They need to support you in your endeavour. If you don’t win their support, you will see, they can pose tremendous obstacles on your path to progress. Let’s say you don’t have the support of your roommates, or your hostelmates, or your classmates, you will see, even a single step will be so very difficult. And hence gaining their support, winning their support, becomes very critical. In fact in 2009 we were travelling to Leh and Ladakh. So there on the way to Leh and Ladakh we stayed in a place close to the neighbouring country borders. There is just one small stream, it is a big river, but there is only so much water that separates the borders. And then when we were standing there, everywhere it was written “Beware, the enemy is watching.” We normally do not encounter or use the word “enemy” in that sense. So we just asked the commander over there “Why is the word ‘enemy’ written?” And he said “Any moment the bullet could just land on your head.” That is the kind of social situation that is prevalent on the borders. Hence that second shanthi that we say is to achieve peace and harmony in that dimension. In fact if you look at the Ramayana, Mahabharata and our puranas and so on – you know, professor was just showing us your library which had all the books…I don’t know if you have taken a look at that (Laughter). But if you look at the technical literature, our itihasas, puranas, our niti shastras, dharma shastras and so on, they will explicitly say what all a leader needs to do to maintain balance in adi daivika and adi bhautika, so that the individual can prosper. Otherwise the individual cannot take care of adi daivika and adi bhatika fully. It is the leader – whoever occupies the leadership position will need to ensure that these are taken care of. That was considered the sign of a good rajya, or raja. So that is part of the raja dharma. And hence, even now when people talk of Rama Rajya and so on, it is basically because, in Ramayana, original text you will find, Rama’s Rajya is so famous because Rama had absolute control over adi daivia and adi bhautika in his rajya. There was no natural disaster. Even now we aim for that. We try to prevent ourselves from the impact of fire, or earthquake – earthquake-resistant structures – and so on, but we are still in the process. Still there is a lot of loss of life, even in developed nations. But Rama had achieved such great administration and good governance that adi daivika and adi bhuatika ‑that is even social disturbances and all of that was taken care of just through good governance and administration. That is how important the role of a leader is. That is not properly understood these days and hence anybody gets elevated to political leadership positions, not only those that have the skill and the goodness, the virtue, who get elevated , who get empowered to the right position, not otherwise. So till a few years back we have seen the political situation was very very…it did not fully take care of the adi daivika and adi bhautika. Only now concrete steps are being taken in that direction in a very strong manner. Sometimes, within an individual, there are 2 identities. At one time, he may feel that,” I am happy and satisfied. I am enjoying what I do.” At another time, he may feel,”Why am I here? What am I doing here?” How do we resolve this?
That is a beautiful question. This is a question that everybody faces, this is almost universal. I had been to Europe. I met a very old Professor there. He revealed a philosophical difficulty that he has about 80 years of age. So even at that age, there are questions, so it is not just youth. At all ages, people face this dilemma, or question, or conflicts of identities are interests, right? It is very easy. Now a typical approach that people wish to take is “From today onwards my life is going to be in a certain way”. It is almost like your entire life has been decided from this moment. How can that be? When we travel, trek up the Himalayas, we have a plan of action. We have a schedule, everything lined up, but we are ever-ready, we are sensing how the situation is, constantly. And ready to act, whnever there is a need, we jump into action. To make sure that the overall balance is maintained. So it is just like a car, you go on roads, there is a pothole..tilt, but it should not topple. That means the centre of mass should be within the structure otherwise it topples. If you manage, if you get a hang of this, you will manage your lives where your centre of mass does not topple. Then you will see, potholes, it is okay, you can manage, and when you need to race, you can race. So you can enjoy the best of everything. For that you need to get a..your inner compass right. The feel right. The hang right. So there are tools available for that. For example, yogic tools, there are many tools available for that to keep your inner balance constantly on. Then you will actually achieve a good work-life balance. If you depend only on plan of action, you will constantly encounter rugged edges. One plan, suddenyl something happens and your plan s gone. Then you will be like — “Arrrrrgh!” and that is all, gone! Your inner feel will be like haywire. You understand this. You all would have experienced this, it is a no-brainer. It is not a big deal at all, that is where getting this hang of this balance beceoms critical. Then you will see, you will be able to navigate any territory, no matter what challenges you face in life, your balance will not be gone and that will be a cool life. That is what Sri Krishna (and other great beings) demonstrated. They were cool guys. Not bad at all right? Were they not cool? I don’t know how you look at them, I look at them as cool, really cool. Or is it not the appropriate word to use, I don’t know. (laughter) Is it okay, or .…I don’t know this context here (at the University) They were cool and awesome people. Otherwise who will remember .…will anybody remember us? How long will people remember us, after we pass away? I don’t know, maybe 10 days…after that. Being remembered for 5000–6000 years is really great, and celebrating their lives is something. They should have been like awesomest people on earth right? Otherwise who will celebrate our lives? Will anybody celebrate. Even now for a birthday, we have to invite people and they will say “Arey yaar, kuch our kaam hai, jaldi karo na? Cake banto, jaao. (Oh man! I have something else to do, just do it quickly. Distribute the cake man! ” Who cares? (Laughter) And as you grow older they ask “ithni zaroori hai kya? You have gone half bald, you celebrate your children’s birthday, why do you care about your birthday?”. That is how it goes! (Laughter) I am just kidding. In a way it is true. Right? So that is a very good question. In fact, these are the challenges we wish to address.
Since all of you are students, we thought we will ask you about the kind of challenges that you face as a student. Challenges in any dimension. For example, in engaging with studies, or work, family. What kind of challenges do you face?
Concentration, Time management, Procrastination, Non-agreement with parents
Okay. All the time (Laughter) That we very well understand. See, we have a 11-year old son, so the moment we ask him “Have you studied this?” he would say,” No, I want to become a badminton player. Education is not the thing that I want to invest my time on.” (Laughter) And then the non-agreement with parents starts there. But actually, the non-agreement is not with us, but our parents. Because we are okay, we are both , so it is okay, you know (Laughter)
Challenges: Peace, Work-life balance, Internal conflict of identities, Discretion –what is right and what is wrong, Decision making, Negative thoughts, Jealousy, Comparison (between two individuals)
In fact, when I was in school and whenever I return from an examination, first thing my mother would ask “How much did Renuka score?”(Laughter)
Challenges: Expectations, Fear of failure, Fear of future, uncertain future, Independence, freedom(not seeking support constantly), Handling criticism, Something to validate our thought process, our decision process
So that we know that there is one more person other than us who thinks we are right.
So these are I think, broad enough challenges. So one component atleast that I see missing here is do with the physical health. Health atleast we have seen that it is very important, in order to carry forward what we intend to do, because that can act as a speed breaker. Because we know that we are proceeding fast and then something happens to our health, it could be a small cold, or a cough , something simple, but then it could just act as a speed breaker. And then, since all are women students here, atleast we thought we would touch upon some dimensions of these aspects that you have mentioned and also bring a little bit of a gender context,because atleast we feel this crowd will be able to appreciate it better.
Now when we say health, health is again, in terms of a balance. For what we wish to achieve, this body should not be an impediment. Let’s say you don’t want to sleep, but sleep happens inspite of your effort, your wish, then that is an impediment. Let’s say in class, you don’t want to sleep, but most might want to sleep, that is a different story. You don’t want to but still the effect of gravity on the eyelids might be so high that (Laughter) How do we take care of health in a very very simple manner. The Indian principles of approaching health are very simple and straightforward. I have been into yogic practice for more than 25 years. I have seen the significant effects in terms of so many other benefits, but some of which is also physical benefit. So in fact. When we were discussing with Ankurji yesterday, he was mentioning how the program here is uniquely designed so that it does not fully bring a masculine approach to management. That is a very important thing as such, because especially when women students are involved with the program, it is also important to preserve certain uniqueness that women bring to the environment. So especially, whenever I go around and talk to women students, I ask them about what is different between men and women, have you experienced any differences? Any stereotypes? So they generally talk about people perceiving that women can do only certain kind of things. They are not strong enough. Or they are very emotional, always these tear dams are full. Any time they can just overflow and things like that. But of course we know that not all these stereotypes are true, but at least at the physical health perspective, there are differences. We must acknowledge that there are differences. And acknowledging and understanding those differences really helps us to proceed on the path of success without much difficulty. Atleast that is the way I have looked at it. Though I am sensitive about not differentiating men and women, I also hihglight a sense of uniqueness that women bring to the environment in terms of their physical health. That is where I have observed that in the different phases of a woman’s life, there are definitely some very strong hormonal changes that happen. Until the age of 12. After the age of 12, until people get married, after marriage, after having a child, and then, above 40. Each phase is very different in terms of how the woman interacts with her environment. So taking cognizance of these hormonal changes also becomes important because you will be taking up leadership roles in different organizations. You will be managing teams, you will be proceeding very fast in your careers. You will also be managing families. So at different points in time, it is very important to pay attention to what is happening within you in terms of health. And balancing those hormones becomes very important because as we have experienced in our life, the endocrine system is clearly linked to the emotions that we display. And keeping the endocrinal system healthy is very important for women because that is the reason many people perceive that women are emotional, they tend to cry for everything. That is the reason, mainly because the endocrinal system is being stressed out at certain points in time because there are some differences with respect to the hormones. And hence we generally advice on some practices that students, not just women, but students can take up so that the hormonal balance is also maintained. And the other thing that I have seen, especially with respect to women, something that is very much required is like, have you observed the difference between a pencil and a rubber band? When you apply a lot of force, what happens to a pencil when you apply a lot of pressure? It breaks. And what happens to a rubber band? It stretches. At some point it will break but it still has a lot of flexibility. So the flexibility like a rubber band is very important. That is why we found that yogic practices have helped us keep up that flexibility, and it also leads to a mental flexibility, because when we climb up the Himalayas, we have seen that a lot of physical stamina is required, be it a woman or a man. That is when this flexibility really helps, and yogic practices have helped us to keep up that stamina for a very long period of time and also help you to bend your body when required, bend your mind, when it is required. So there we again look at a balanced state of health. So towards that one aspect is the physical component, which is physical exercise ‑even asanas, or surya namaskara, or something that challenges your current level of stamina, or current state of physical health. So taking up such a challenge becomes very useful. Not over-stretching it or ver-doing it, but definitely something challenging physically. Because many emotions are also to do with, as she rightly pointed out, it is to do with the endocrinal system. You know what the endocrinal system is? It is very simple. These glands, the pituitary gland, the thyroid gland, the thymus, the gonads, the adrenal glands, pancreas. So these glands secrete hormones which give rise to feeling. How we feel is closely interlinked with the glandular secretion. If hormonal imbalance is there, then you will feel bad. You cannot do anything about it. But you will see that you will jump up and down, and flay your arms and this and that, and immediately you will feel good. This is why many people, some of our friends and students we have seen in Bangalore who are in the software industry, weekdays the accumulate all of these hormonal stresses, weekends they go bag their heads. “Are yaar, phir se Monday aa gaya.” There are these pubs and discos, and that is called head-banging. So they go there and they do this head banging to relieve their stress. It is not wrong, but if you understand the principle behind it, you can do it at home as well, without banging your head on the wall.(Laughter) And getting guaranteed results.
So in the yogic practices, we guide it appropriately, understanding these principles. Even physical exercises work this way. But physical exercises generally work at the musculature, skeletal and cardiovascular levels. But yogic practices go deeper. There are multiple aspects, multiple dimensions to a human being. So they go deeper. This if you understand, and get into physical exercises, exercise routine, even for 15 mins a day, or periodically when you require it, then you will see, your state of emotions will also be balanced, and you will have good physical stamina, good suppleness, and what she said as the elastic and tensile strength. That becomes very critical. That is about the physical aspect that you need to take care of, because it is not overnight that you develop it. If you invest in it lifelong, then that stays balanced. If you don’t invest in it. It is like not brushing your teeth. If you don’t keep it up, because it is a state of dynamic balance of the hormones. If you don’t keep it up, you will see a slide. That happens to most people because of a lack of understanding. So investing in your physical health is a very very important thing. At least 10–15 mins of some physical practice. If there are surya namaskaras and asanas taught, they act at all these levels. If not that, at least some gym, or jog, not as a heavy exercise. It should not drain you, but it should keep you.…it should be a feel good. That will also be closely interlinked to your emotional feel. Then you will see many of the problems you will not have. They will disappear. And all that has happened is a hormonal balance that is all. Hormones can really make you go haywire. All inner confusions and they will keep growing! — “Kya ho raha hai” All because the hormones are going haywire. Through physical activity you can actually bring a balance. That is how important physical activity is.
So these (challenges) can…some of these are to do with cognitive aspects. Some of these are to do with emotional aspects. If you get a sense of emotional balance, then some of these aspects will be taken care of. If you get a sense of cognitive balance, some of these aspects will be taken care of. The emotional aspects we will look at later. First let us look at some key things. For example, concentration, time management, goal management, these are critical things. But generally what is our idea of concentration? That also becomes important. If your definition of concentration is like “Okay! I am going to just sit like this and finish off the entire book.” Will it happen? For me, it will happen, I will tell you. (Laughter) I have tried it. I have tried many things. I have spent about 100 days in mauna tapasya in a hut. She allowed me to. So in a hut, away from people, not eating, not sleeping. Sounds crazy? It is valid experimentation. It is like Ph.D in inner sciences. Concentration is also interlinked with time management and goal management. Because you will see, let us say, you have an assignment to submit, but you are here in class. What happens to your concentration — “Ye submit karna hai. Wo submit karna hai. Kab karen? Abhi karenge? Nahi magar ye, nahi karne denge.” All this goes on, and hence what happens to your concentration? Gone. This is not about philosophy. It is about very practical thing. This is about time management. If you work it backwards. Let’s say you have a diary or a calendar, you say, “Okay this is the deadline.” For achieving this, you need to work backward and draw up a practical schedule, “Okay this week, I need to cover this much ground in order to be able to achieve that at that point in time.” If you work it backwards then you will see it is reasonable — “Abhi, yeh karna hai.” That is all. It is no big deal. Then you will see, you have the necessary concentration. It is not a big deal at all. You might have this habit of procrastination. See it is a habit. It is habitual. If you understand how the mind works, it is very simple. These are called vasanas or samskaras. Samskaras are habitual patterns. You do it, you do it, you do it, repeat, repeat, repeat — “mein vaisa hi hun”. You will claim that “I am like that.” But it is simply repetition, repetition that has led you to say “Ah. I am like this. I have negative attitude.” You don’t have negative attitude, but you have constantly associated with that process of repetition and hence, now you feel “Oh, I am stuck.” Even procrastination works that way. That is the reason why we set our intention, we say to ourselves “I am going to do this, for a specific length of time.”. So this procrastination is a habit and not your nature. You need to break it. When you say “Now”, it is now, that is it. But don’t extend that “now” for -” Okay, now I am going to sit and study for 5 hours. 18 hours a day I am going to sit and study.” Don’t make such a plan. This one step, how am I going to take, that is all. Not a big plan and all. Don’t immediately build up a plan of action. No. “Now, for 10 minutes, I am going to do this. That is all.” 10 minutes break it down. We eat only this much. There is so much food, we cannot gobble it up all at one time. We can have a plan of action, our plan will most probably fail, because there might be no capacity. At this time, 10 minutes, done! Action is much better than all this planning. You do planning, planning, planning for one full day, at the end of the day will you be happy? You will be miserable. Instead you just do one thing, 10 minutes. It is done and dusted. That is it. It is gone, out of your mind. So that is the key strategy to break procrastination. It is action, but it is quick and dirty action. You know, I was a hacker, not a negative thing, in computer science, there are these things. A cracker is one with malicious intentions. Hacking is something to improve the software, okay. So even a hack, you know what a hack is? Ye jugaad jo bolt hai? It is a hack, right? Something quick and dirty so that it works that is all. That is called a hack. I was a Linux hacker. There are grand plans. That is well-reasoned out, and that also you need to do. But every small action you turn it into a grand lifetime achievement, you don’t get a lifetime achievement award. These small small things should be kept small and quick. Then you will see, you have time for the big things also. Otherwise you will not have time for anything. Why? Because you are all the time, here, thinking about time. So the key thing is action. You do it, done, it is done. So keep it small, keep it quick, just do it. The big things, you need to plan appropriately. So procrastination, time management, goal management, and concentration all of these are interlinked. So it is not to do ith big concentration or anything. Even concentration works that way. Let us say, you need to meditate. How long can you sit. This is padmasana. How long can you sit in this? 10 minutes? Very good. How about 10 hours? You can sit in this with perfect concentration for 15 minutes? (straining in pain, laughter) So that does not exactly lead to what is called an asana. Asana means sthiram, sukham, ithi asanam. It should be sukha — “Ah!” You can just relax, chill out and “Wow man.” If it is not like that, then it is not an asana for you. Not forever. That is not the idea. Not now. For example, this was not an asana for me years back. Now it is an asana. So you can work towards it Anything and everything you can work towards it. That is the whole idea. Not yet, or not now might be a good understanding. So you set meaningful targets and achieve it. And it should be quick and small so that you also feel “ Kuch tho kiya hai.” Not “Kuch tho socha hai” No. “Kuch tho kiya hai.” — that is the critical thing. So all of this, if you just learn to actionate, you areon board. It is very very simple. Then you will see, in fact most of your other challenges also get met. In fact, Smrithi is a woman of action. She can speak more about this.
So in fact, many people get stressed out when they have a lot of things to do, lot of things on their plate. So she was asking about work life balance. You just do not know how to take care of that as well as this – whatever it could be ‑2 things or multiple things. So in fact, who are some of the women characters in the Mahabharata that you know of? Draupadi, Gandhari, Kunti, Ganga, Subhadra, and many more characters. When we talk of Draupadi, what comes to your mind?
Atleast many people in the south remember her only as a woman with 5 husbands. But tht is not the only thing that Mahabharata talks about when we talk of Drauapdi. So there is very beautiful converation that happens between Draupadi and Satyabhama. So Satyabhama asks Draupadi — “I am always observing that all the Pandavas are very devoted to you. They are ready to do whatever you say, very dedicated to you. So is it some kind of a mantra, tantra that you have put on them, any charm that you have cast on them, that they are so devoted to you.” Then Draupadi, as you said, she is a very strong woman, she gets very offended by this statement. “I didn’t put any mantra tantra, but the very way I lead my life is what is making them devoted to me.” So she lists, or gives a detail of what she does everyday. Very very fascinating to know about the kid of life that she led. So she would always be the first person to wake up in the morning, to take care of various aspects and she would be the last person to go to bed. And in the process, she was the one who knew…who had an account of every penny which was there in the treasury. Only she was the person who was aware of how much was going out, how much was coming in, to the penny. She was the one who knew that. And then whenever Yudhishthira or any of the Pandavas went on an expedition, there would be a lot of people surrounding them, there would be soldiers, 10s and 1000s of soldiers, at least 30–40,000 people surrounding each king and his chariot and thn they would be going on an expedition. So Draupadi was the person who would sort of design, who would be there, accompanying the king when they go on an expedition. Who are the people – she knew the soldiers names, their wives names, and their children’s names and she also patiently used to hear each of the problems that each of the soldiers faced in their personal lives, and who came to work that day, who did not come to work. If they did not come to work, what wa the problem that they were facing. Are their children ill? Is there something going on in their life? It is not like a register that she used to maintain. It is not like, somebody came, attendance register, log book of problems or anything. But the very compassion that she displayed towards…enhanced her cognitive capabilities so much that she could actually have all the data in her and then be an impactful leader. So if at all there was one leader that stood out in the Mahabhaarata, you know Krishna is of course there, but as a woman leader, I think we can definitely give credit to Draupadi, that way. Because paying attention to detail is something that we all have to cultivate. I have seen many leaders take very rash decisions without paying attention to how it could actually be impacting their personal lives, the lives of people around them as well as the society. So paying attention to those details becomes very important. I have also interacted with leaders who actually have excellent memory. Memory in the sense, they can actually crunch so much data and they know precisely what each person needs, who are they, what is their background and what is their need, what are the people that surround them, so much detail that their each decision would actually be taking into account all these aspects,. That is when we get stressed out, right? We get stressed out because we do not know much about the impact of our decisions. We think about one person, and then we say, “If I take this decision this person would be affected.” We do agree that this one person would be affected, but if it is impacting a larger group of people, then probably we need to take that decision.
At every point in time, we have faced that question, for example, I chose to return from the US, and my parents were very very unhappy about it. Everybody around me was unhappy about it, but I felt only that would be good, because looking forward I wanted to be of service to this nation, and that was a concrete decision. Once a decision is taken and it wa completely convincing for me, I allowed some time for my parents and all of them to get on board. They were convinced of this decision later on, but initially there was severe opposition. Over a period of time, through my actions, I gained their support, because they saw my conviction and I was turning it into success, it was not that …and I have never repented such a decision. When will you not have a fear of uncertainty of the future. For example, for us, if you take our current state, it is completely uncertain future. We have started Anaadi Foundation. What is the future of Anaadi Foundation? It is just as open as this world. We can achieve anything, or we can be a complete failure. The way it works for us is, the day we decide, we have already started running, and we run very hard, and hence we are considered success by everybody around us, because we don’t keep looking back and repenting”. Arey yaar, US se nahi aana tha, kya life tha…!” Never once has it even occurred to me because we have run so far, there is no point in looking back and there is no way to look back because you are like really far ahead, you have just gone. That is a very simple way to take care of future uncertainties. You run hard, and that is to do with activating. You have ideas, you actionate, and just follow it up, by running hard, and it builds up, it is about momentum. If you gain the right momentum, then fear or no fear, all that becomes theoretical. “Ahh.…okay, fear…” It is not about physical fear okay? It is lie a dog is barking at you? Will you have fear? That is actual fear — “Are kya ho jayega? Kaatega tho gaya.” It is like gone. But that is like actual fear, but this is imagined fear, this is psychological fear. Not that it is purely imagined, it also ha validity, just that you should not make it true. All the fears if they come true, how would it be? It is in our hands to make it invalid, and there if you are completely convinced about a decision, not ad hoc decisions, you have thought about it, you have analyzed it from different angles, you have consulted people, you have sound boarded ideas, still it is your life, and you decide, there is no gain say in that. Once you have decided, you should run so hard that there is no time for fear. You work, you sleep, you work , you sleep, and all the time is enjoying. If you think, think, think, imagine, imagine, imagine, not planning, not strategizing, but just imagine, give in to your anxieties, you will constantly have anxiety attacks. That is the critical part. Then you will see, with success, you will gain a lot of friends. All your relatives everyone will stand by you.One success after the other, they anyhow will have the confidence that you will make it happen, because it is you.
Just a little sensible action, one minute, 5 mins, 10 mins, whatever is sensible and practicable in your lives, you just actionate on it, then you will see, actually you will gain the support of people. For the time being maybe, sometimes I have not…I can proudly say that I have failed in so many things. I have been a big failure, but that has been okay. That doesn’t mean I am beaten. You don’t need to carry the attitude of a loser. You can learn from each thing, actionate appropriately, that is the critical thing. There, you do what you are confident about, gain better confidence from there you do what you are confident about, and that is how it proceeds. Then you will see, it is not a linear growth, it is actually an exponential growth. That’s life. Carry the right attitude, and again the right attitude is repetition. That is very very important, and there your friends can be very very good support. That is where, a friend is a real friend, who gives you the necessary support and strength to go forward with what is practicable, and what is good for you.
So it has been a wonderful time with you all…