Where Am I Going In Life?

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“I will not be a common man. I will stir the smooth sands of monotony. I do not crave security. I wish to hazard my soul to opportunity.”

― Peter O’Toole

 

Is it not okay to be ordinary?

 

Sometimes a question like this perturbs me so much that I wish to go somewhere far and isolated to contemplate, to come up with answers. But then someone tiny tugs at my dress and I realise this is as much peace and quiet I’m going to get not to mention I can’t live without this tiny person. So, I need to make the most of it. Hence, if I need to find answers, I need to do it right here.

 

For the past few days, rather this last month, I have been thinking a lot about where I am in terms of my dreams for me as a person, not as a daughter, wife or mother. What have I achieved, if anything at all professionally? What has Naba achieved? Am I doing what I want to do? I guess we all know the answer to this last question. But honestly, I’m not sure if where I am at present will lead to where I want to be. Confused? Well, perhaps, after reading the complete post, you’ll get a fair idea of what I’m talking about.

 

Let’s back up a bit.

 

A few days back while on my way to work, I heard about this player named Jaydev Unadkat who was bought for a whopping 11.5 crore by the Rajasthan Royals for IPL 2018. Imagine how well this 26-year-old must have done to command that kind of interest and offer. I’m going out on a limb here to say that he is doing what he loves and for that he is being paid well too. What must that feel like I wonder? Good, very good undoubtedly.

 

This nugget of information on the radio kept replaying in my mind making me wonder where I am. At the start of January, all the hard work I had done over the last year was brushed aside for what can only be described as ridiculous reasons. Beleive me for I can be as critical of myself as you can’t even imagine. It was like my hard work had amounted to nothing. Honestly, I felt a little lost. And when that happens it kind of hits on your will to do more and even your confidence. Of course, being in the IT industry for a decade I know you never really get rewarded for good work. Well, not unless your manager is actually a good person or you are good at arse kissing. I have never been able to do the latter so you can very well imagine the disappointments that I have lived through. All because a job like mine ensures financial independence and stability for me as an individual.

 

It’s not like I don’t enjoy my work. I’m going to even say that I’m good at it. But I just feel like I’m stuck in a rot, not going anywhere. To top that my maternity break and the fact that I don’t stay back at work to ‘pretend’ that I’m working hard also keep pulling me back. It’s all about appearances, isn’t it? And the thing is with me what you see is what you get. So, I’m probably never going to be as successful as Jaydev Unadkat. And I’m probably never going to demand that kind of remuneration.

 

Is it not okay to be ordinary? #Life Click To Tweet

 

This also brings me to the other thing that inevitably keeps poking its head every now and then. How can I invest more time into my writing, something that gives me true joy? How can I do something which I love without worrying about bills? Can I take a risk and just immerse myself in the world of books and writing, where I’m my own boss? Each time I see people excelling in their passion, taking that leap of faith and doing well, I wonder why can’t I do that too. But everytime responsibilities or the fear of the unknown future scares me. And when you add a kid to that equation, her future, it makes that choice even more difficult. Or, maybe I just don’t have it in me to follow my heart.

 

So, I again come up to the conclusion that I’m perhaps made to be ordinary. Perhaps, my life will only be about going through the routine of this thing called life. I’ll keep doing this job which makes me more unhappy than happy, which hardly rewards me and which pays me not nearly enough for my effort and experience. Perhaps, this dream of taking up writing as a career will only remain that, a dream. Blogging is perhaps only as far as I’ll go in terms of having my works published. As you can imagine, it’s not a good feeling.

 

Maybe I’m in a dark place today. Maybe when I wake up tomorrow I’ll see the glass as half full, full of possibilities. Tell you that ordinary is good because I know I have told that before. For today though, it doesn’t seem so. Don’t get me wrong, I have a great family and I’m also fortunate in so many countless ways. I’m grateful for those every day. But somewhere there is this part of me which wants to maybe achieve something, fulfil this dream that I have nurtured for a long time and just not be ordinary even if for one single moment in my lifetime. But I just can’t seem to find the courage or time to go for it with my complete focus. And that disappoints me. So, maybe ordinary is only as far as I’ll go.

 

Does something like this bother you too?

 

Where Am I Going In Life?

 

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24 thoughts on “Where Am I Going In Life?

  1. I believe that we are all extraordinary, Naba. Because we are with us all the time experiencing our extraordinary abilities and life every single second, we are just unable to see the magnitude of it. That is all. Not all of us may end up doing jobs which pays in crores, but we do treat our days, obstacles , and happiness in our own extraordinary way, don’t we? That being said, I have been through this feeling many a times. I don’t just feel that I’m ordinary, but that I’m useless and a failure. But that’s not the truth, is it? Hugs, Naba.

  2. Naba, first, big hugs. I know it’s been a challenging few years on the job front and nobody likes to work without some form of acknowledgement. It can be very tough.

    So you’re not alone in this.

    But the worst part about life today is the unfortunate presence of comparison. We’re always going to find people more successful than we are. Happier than we are. It’s not even going to change unless we decide to change it.

    The key thing to ask yourself is this: Does the comfort of a secure job outweigh the happiness you’d find in doing something you truly enjoy? Yes the latter is risky. Life is risky. So answering that question truthfully is important.

    Once you do then it’s important to take a decision based on that answer.

    And it isn’t easy so I won’t suggest one thing or another. Again, sending you lots of hugs because I believe in good vibes that will help during a tough time

  3. There are no ordinary moments and there are no ordinary people. I think Naba you have to be confident in yourself, because what you feel inside, you portray outside. And it’s all a matter of priorities. I turned down a role as IT Applications Manager offered to me by my manager because my son was little at the time and I wasn’t prepared to compromise my children for the role, title and money. I’ve never regretted that. And I always knew that when the time was right, the right opportunities would come my way. They did. And they will come for you too when the time is right.

  4. I feel it’s always good to strive to achieve your goals but we shouldn’t forget that the ordinary things that we sometimes take for granted are generally good too.

  5. We are not ordinary, but I know where you are coming from. I think we have to immerse ourselves in our true passion in order to find the deep happiness we seek. Complicated with a child, yes I agree, still we have to carve a little extraordinary for ourselves #mg

  6. Reninds me of this post I wrote 2 years ago then I was in a similar state of mind.
    https://www.momspresso.com/parenting/the-day–i-became-a-mom/article/being-the-mediocre-woman-makes-me-happy. It’s always tricky especially when one has found their true calling like writing in your case and mine. But one cannot let go of practicality. For me a job change is what worked well it was a big decision moving out of Bangalore after spending 10 years but working in a place where my efforts are valued has made a sea change in my attitude towards my work.

  7. That pull between our head and our heart is something that a lot of us feel very often. I know I do too. We all find answers in different ways. Ultimately, I think it’s a balancing act. Can you take a leap, a risk? And if you can’t, how can you find a happy compromise? Answer that, and suddenly the grey clouds seem to dissipate – more often than not! Hugs!

  8. Hi Nabanita, 9 years after my marriage and two kids, I also asked this same question to myself; to my God. I had already been at home and never on professional front but still, I was tired of my life and confused so as to what have I achieved so far other than husband and kids? I used to write in the diary and wanted to search a career in writing which I have found now.
    It was a pleasure reading your story.

  9. This question has crippled me so many times and again and again i have just gained strength from the thought that things will fall into place in the long run, just do your best for today… I left my first IT job as a Java Developer six months back after spending 2 years in the job to prepare for competitive exams, esp GATE.. and now i am feeling like all these months of attending classes and studying was in vain, as i have not fared well in it… I don’t know where i am going as i have doubts that perhaps i am not made for the competitive world of exams… Perhaps these are not my cup of tea.. i am again at sea.. with writing providing some semblance of meaning to my life at present….

  10. This is a dilemma that will need time, and maybe a pinch of practice to sort out.

    I write full-time, and to anyone thinking of writing as a career, I’d say, keep your day job. Fit writing in whenever you can. That’s what most writers, including the published and established ones, do. Getting paid for your work is easier in almost any other field than art and writing, because the supply far outstrips demand.

    Women often have to put their dreams on the back-burner, and come to pursuing their passions late in life. If you’d love a writing career, keep reading, keep writing, take a few workshops online. You’ll be doing your apprenticeship in anonymity, a crucial stage of a writing life–and once your kid is older and the pressures of finance and parenthood diminish, you’ll be ready to step into your new career path.

    Also, never compare. No two life journeys are alike. There is extraordinary in the ordinary, and vice-versa.

    You have to define your own version of success, and pursue it. I came across The Happiness Equation by Neil Pasricha and it helped me sort out my thoughts regarding success. I’d say it is worth a look.

    Sending you good vibes, lots of luck, and warm hugs. May you find what you’re looking for.

  11. It feels bad when your hard work is not acknowledged. We all go through this bad phase. Being ordinary is not always bad.. there is often fun in being just simple and ordinary. There is pleasure in doing the routine. Cherishing every moment of the so called ordinary life makes you extraordinary

  12. Please don’t let these IT folks get your morale down. I have spent close to 10 years at the same job, but since I have worked on multiple projects I have learnt too many things. Thankfully, I work in a project where all my efforts are acknowledged in terms of ratings and remunerations. But I see a lot of people who barely get their due. I’m way too upfront with my work. I don’t stay up late, nor do I come in early. I just do my work quickly, neatly and speak up often. But there are so many times I ask the same question to myself. Is this all I am made for? Work and home? It is not a good feeling.

    You are so much more than what you think you are, Naba. Being ordinary is a treasure these days with everyone faking their asses out to be extraordinary. Stay awesome just the way you are now.

    I hope you feel better soon, hugs!

  13. I doubt that there isn’t a person alive who hasn’t thought the same. It’s hard when your heart wants to go in one direction, but your head says something completely different. I wish you luck as you figure things out and find a way that works for you and your family.

  14. We are all unique and above ordinary Darling; you have your own graces and charms that none can copy or posses plus no one on this planet has your life! This has been gifted to you by the Universe and its your path – your alone!
    I think you are doing an incredible job – Wife/mom/co-worker/blogger – so many hats you wear and cope with everyday! This is your life and you should own it like the BOSS!!!!
    So chin up girl and stop comparing yourself to anyone – you are uniquely you Naba!!!!

  15. You are certainly not ordinary. No-one is really ordinary. We’re all unique individuals, and whilst we might not all be amazing cricket players or brilliant musicians, it is the combination of our skills and insights and personality that makes us extraordinary.

    I know the thoughts you are having. I have them too – and I’m much older than you! I’m sure we all have them.But remember how fabulous you really are.

    And there’s no harm in starting today to write something that might be published. Even if “starting” is as simple as jotting some notes, or opening a file. I’m suggesting you do as I say, not as I do, but simply writing this is inspiring me to do just a little bit today towards my goal. So I thank you for that, and hope you find your inspiration too.

  16. I have thought about the same thing numerous times and have not got my answer. It surely pains when you work very hard despite the life situations and you don’t get adequately rewarded for it. I went through all the above comments and Damyanti’s and Shailaja’s comments made more sense to me.

  17. Hey cheer up! We’re all ordinary people. That’s what makes us extraordinary. Most people have something wrong with their lives ……if your life is plain boring and ordinary that’s unique. And one day you will get what you want…..

  18. Anyone living this life and going through the struggles is no ordinary person. It takes great courage to fight every battle and live to see another day. And you are a star player. As for your job issue… Switch it girl switch jobs. There’s no other solution. I know you have been through this for many years… It took me 6 years to take a risk and switch … That was the best career move I made. Maybe there’s a better opportunity waiting for you.

  19. The mere fact that you are questioning your lot in life, proves you are extraordinary — a strong, brave woman. We face so many challenges and children add joy, love, chaos, and confusion. Use your words, your passion, and you will feel better. Serendipity may surprise you. xoxo #mg

  20. I believe we all go through tough times, but not one of us handle the same way as another. Something that would cause me to fall apart, you might take in your stride. Yet something else has you flailing for help while I cope just fine. But I think the key is what you brought out about learning not to worry about what OTHERS say. OTHERS aren’t the one facing the crisis. You are! Thanks for this post. Thankful Thursday #5

  21. I hear you Naba…I had what I called a thirty-life-crisis a couple of years ago. I was questioning where I was and what I was doing with life. The hardest thing these days is the comparison — everyone’s lives are out there for all to see and therefore, it’s hard to not compare our own lives. Not being valued at work sucks big time! I experience the same from management but fortunately for me, I can see my clients getting better and I know I am doing a good job and loving what I do. Will I make it big in the world? I highly doubt it. Will I become a millionaire? Hah! If I’ve learnt anything in the past couple of years it’s to find the joy in the ordinary. That it’s okay to not be famous. To not travel the world. To not be an Instagram influencer. To find the things that give me joy while knowing there are others I have to do to pay the bills. Hang in there and hopefully, things will change.

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