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Life Updates - 2020 (Part 2 of 2)

You can read part 1 here.

What I have learnt over the last two years

Privilege:
The concept of privilege that is realizing the benefits you unknowingly has has changed me. It is a topic I have often referred to recently on my blogs. It has made me more aware of myself and shaped my political ideology. You can read about it here, an article that is a copy-paste of one of my essays that I submitted during the Ashoka University application process. 

Time management - Work/ Life Balance

A vast majority of people I know/ knew lacked either time management or having a work/life balance. 
Concerning time management, people do not realise the amount of time they have. Friends and classmates (and even a member on the Sciences Po interview panel) have been surprised about how much time I have (to spend time with them or engage in a particular activity), considering my extra-curriculars, (recreational) sports, academics, voluntary work schedule etc. Although I often do not reply to that statement and just brush it off, in my head, I am always reminded that we all have the same 24 hours in a day, but if we changed our mentality a bit, we could use it more efficiently. Here, I must admit that even I am not the most efficient in utilising my time, but I am confident that I do it to a better extent than some people because I do not feel overburdened by the amount of things I do, but often do many different things.

Often due to upcoming exams, people stop all social engagements. I have never quite understood why.
If your exam is for 3 hours in the morning, in most cases, one does not study at least for a couple of hours after. Fitting in a quick lunch with a friend (even though you have your next exam right around the corner), is possible without effectively 'wasting time' as the time would have anyway been 'wasted' doing nothing. For some of you reading this, it may seem obvious, and you may be following it. However, that is not the case with many people I know and thought I should write about this. I have never quite understood why people impose a lockdown on themselves and even the thought of going out for a couple of hours seems daunting and a ridiculous thought.

Most people try and compartmentalize their lives into three parts. One for recreation. One for daily work. One for work that requires high amounts of focus, for a limited period (for example - exams). 
Many people I know will engage with just one compartment at any given point of time. If they have a high-focus engagement, recreation and daily work are ignored. Similarly, when they engage with only 'recreation', the other two compartments are ignored or neglected. 

Rather than trying to find a sufficient balance and effectively juggling all three aspects, people often try to focus on just one, and in my opinion, end up being unhappy or do not have enough time on their hands because, at any given moment in life, they are only focussing on one aspect, and not living life to their fullest by having a combination of all three. Think about it. Would you prefer partying and having fun for five days continuously and then slogging it out for the rest of the year or would you make time for yourself over the year more frequently and enjoy life by having a small breather from time to time? Your opinion may differ, but I prefer the short breathers every week that you get at the end of a Monday-Friday workweek. Even though many people believe that living for the weekend is not a good thing, I think it's the best compromise. We have to make, in our limited capacities, an end goal in the short run and the long run. Calling the weekend your short-run goal is okay. It gives you something to look forward to and motivates you to put in your best during the week and for the lack of a better phrase, 'chill out' on the weekend. 


Patience

Cliched, isn't it?

You can ask my parents. I am not the most patient of people, so I have made a conscious effort of working towards it. Although Government offices always put my patience to the test and having made four visits to the passport office, for the issue of two passports in the last 6 months (and apart from only occasionally and briefly losing my cool while there), I can quite confidently say that I have become a slightly more patient person :)

Jokes aside, being patient has ensued betterment multifold. Right from waiting for colleges to respond to driving in stressful Bangalore traffic, my patience has been tested time and again. Therefore, I have developed a foolproof way that in most cases, won't stress me out; the following thought:

"Stress is never going to help me advance or do whatever I am doing faster or better. It only causes irrationality and a lack of clear thought that I ever so need because clear thought can help me overcome whatever is causing stress."

Although this sounds like something that any self-appointed preacher would talk about, I realised that by actually implementing these ideas, I could see a visible change in myself and therefore decided to write about it.

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