i was talking to a friend recently about my current state of mind. i was sharing how I was incredibly happy – my social, physical, mental and academic life were going really well and I felt comfortable. and i also shared how i remembered when feelings like these didn’t come too often – when i actually struggled to find any meaning in life and when i was confronted with depressing moments. moments like these , where you cherish what’s going well with your life ; when you’re grateful for what you have – help keep you going in the tougher times.
this may sound too meta for some – but you have to be willing to enjoy life to actually enjoy it. even moments of sadness then become completely integrated into the human experience – you become okay with disappointment and loss; not to the point where you don’t feel anything but where you can grieve successfully and move on.
i know there’s a hashtag that has made its rounds called #100happydays that teaches the people who subscribe to it’s plan to cherish small happy moments for a span of a 100 days. i love that- i didn’t subscribe to it merely because i felt i was doing it already and didn’t need to add another hashtag onto it. but i also pondered on how this affected people.
and then i pondered some more (and that’s probably where you realise my ideas get crazy) and i decided that being happy with what you have is good for most people , but definitely not enough for me. you see one of my core competencies (and struggles) is the ability to never be completely satisfied. it seems to contradict what i’ve said so far , but listen – one can be happy with the way things are but always ask himself , is this it? maybe i’m weird like that- but that sense of discovery has brought me to adventures only imaginable by most people.
so i’ve decided to start a new adventure for myself. being in a college setting away from any sense of irregularity doesn’t mean you can’t add adventure back into your life. i’ll admit i’ve gotten slightly bored especially in the past few days , but this series should put things back in perspective.
i call this series #77breaths . they say that there are moments in life where your breath is taken away – where you’re absolutely astounded by magnificence, beauty or ability. our goal, is to get our breaths taken away 77 days in a row
a lot of those who follow me on instagram know my addiction to storytelling and adventuring. and i’ve been asked many times for advice on what to see, how to put yourself out there and how to chase dreams sustainably. i would provide the following three (cos three is always a good number) guidelines to #77breaths to give yourself the best possible experience.
1) Say YES
Yes Man has many lessons to teach , but the most evident is to say Yes more. Let me quickly qualify by saying don’t put yourself in evident danger (ie overdose on drugs, commit a blatant crime etc.) but yes, say YES to things more. If you’re faced between option A and B, choose the option that you’re less likely to be able to experience again. Say YES to things – put yourself out there. You’ll almost definitely get hurt, lose things, be disappointed – but you’ll also be greatly rewarded with the treasures of life : wisdom, friendships and love.
2) If you’re not learning, you’re not doing it right
We are a collection of our experiences. Who we are today is a sum of the selves we used to be – a magnitude only achieved by accumulation of stories and ideas. the more we learn, the more we apply ourselves to our surroundings, and more importantly, open ourselves to be applied on. differences in cultures, upbringings and backgrounds teach us about humanity – they build empathy and also stretch our mind to accept new possibilities. always seek to learn from your adventures – it is one thing to be a thrill-seeker , it is something else to be an adventurer.
3) Remember to always love
it is a ruthless world out there. and we are given the option to be one with the world, or to be true to ourselves. in a world that rarely begets love in its closest form, we then have to bring love into the picture. love others, love stories, love quiet moments over drinks, love celebrations throughout the day, love music, art, theatre, film; even love yourself more. the true adventurer learns to love the unloveable – to appreciate that everything has a place in this world. that loss and suffering are part of the equation, but that same equations includes uncomparable joy and success.
it’s day 0 so we’ll start #77breaths tomorrow. I’ll be using Snapchat (rovikthebear) for ultra-short snaps, Instagram (@rovikthedreamer) for short-form stories and my blog for long-form stories. i’m excited.