Passion Marathon

“I don’t know what the hell it is that I am doing”.

Saloni told her roommate Kavya, who asked her, “What are you talking about?” Saloni told her, “I wake up every morning with certain negativity, feeling I am going to spend one more day doing everything which is not making me feel satisfied.”  Kavya didn’t really know where this was coming from but she knew she should support her friend, so she told her, “You should do some introspection, and find out what makes you happy, what is your passion and then follow that through with a new plan.”

Saloni thought over this…then confessed, “But, that’s the thing I am not really passionate about anything, I have no idea what makes me happy.” The word passion kept ringing in her mind, she felt at a loss, she didn’t have a clue as to how did she landed up at this position and have no passion at all. She passed out of college with good grades, got herself a decent job at a Multi-National Company, worked hard to climb up the ladder of promotions, appraisals and increased salary. So where did she go wrong. She was good at what she did, and was even appreciated but it no longer seemed enough.

Saloni could not quite fathom as to why she was feeling so unsatisfied, so hollow from within, she felt zero motivation to continue with her daily routine at workplace. Earlier it was for earning money, become independent, then gradually her income was not enough for her various materialistic wishes, so ultimately now it was running after more and more money. Now she felt this she cannot continue this money making race, the end prize was just more money which didn’t seem worth the effort as at the end of the day, even holding all that money and things did not make her jubilant?

Feeling almost in tears, she asked Kavya again, “What do I do, I want to feel happy again, I want that energy I used to feel before start of a game of volleyball back in college.” Kavya was no psychologist, but she tried to understand Saloni’s problem, she asked her “Why do you think all you are doing is running a race after money?” That was easy for Saloni, she said, “That’s because ever since I graduated every decision I took was to earn more money.” Kavya told her, “alright, close your eyes and count backwards from 20 to 1, and then let your thoughts run free, let’s see where they take you.”

Saloni thought of this as stupid but as she had nothing to lose, she complied. She let her thoughts run free; she saw the images of her parents’ happy faces. She saw herself running her own business, feeling energetic throughout the day, returning to a loving family including a husband and kids. Her thoughts then delved deeper towards what she was doing, turned she relished in helping other people through her knowledge and skills and she excelled at it….Beep beep beep….beep beep beep…she felt herself coming out of her trance. She opened her eyes and she saw Kavya holding her phone, which was beeping the alarm. Kavya asked her, “So did you found anything?” Saloni felt a smile coming on her face, she told her, “Yes, I think I know what matters above all to me. I don’t like working under someone, and I think I know what is my passion.”

Kavya smiled and told her, “Great, then all we need to do is turn that passion of yours into a concrete plan which can generate enough income.” Making this decision was very hard for Saloni, but she thought anything is worth it if she felt happy and satisfied at the end of the day. Next few months she spent in developing feasible business plans and the one day she had a perfect business model with a good product she could deliver. So she decided to quit her job and entered the next stage of reviving her life. She experienced many hurdles along the way ranging from her parents expressing worry, friends and colleagues reminding her how risky this idea is, getting the necessary funding and infrastructure, arranging manpower, regulatory compliances, competition, etc. Her parents kept trying to convince her that this is too risky and may create ego problems for her potential life partner.

Saloni realised lots of people considered women only as good as a baby making machine, someone who should only manage a home, she never thought that a housewife did less important work, her mother too was a housewife and a great woman. However she believed she can be a homemaker along with a businesswoman, all it took was staying positive, strategizing and managing her time efficiently. So she first focussed on her new baby which was her consulting company. It was hard at first, very hard, and it was extremely  risky but she continued with her efforts as now at the end of the day she no longer felt lost. Instead she felt jubilant and excited in addition to energetic and hopeful for the next day.

Initially it was all falling apart for her, her parents were worried about her future, she had quit a good job, she was working hard to get clients and building a market for her products, it was even more difficult to convince investors to put there hard earned money, and a whole lot of other issues she never had to face in her monotonous job. But, that’s the thing her old job was monotonous, her business was posing a new challenge to be faced every single day and she loved it. She now enjoyed this new marathon of following her passion with all her heart. She knew her strengths and she knew how to use them in her favour.

Saloni no more slept with dissatisfaction and lost feeling. She had a smile while sleeping of well spent hard day and she had a wonderful smile on her face the next morning in anticipation of a new adventure filled day. It has been almost three years now from the day she quit her job, she started with just Rs. 30,000 as initial investment and now she earns around Rs. 40,00,000 a year. She knows this is just a start and there will be more hurdles but they will not dissuade her from going forward, because she loved what she was doing now and it’s no more about the money, she is just happy enjoying the journey, success and money are merely by-products along the way!!

Life is short to be wasted away in doing things which our heart doesn’t support…It’s our place in the world; it’s our life. Go on and do all we can with it, and make it the life we want to live…

The ones who think they are crazy enough to change the world are the ones who do – Steve Jobs


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