December 28, 2010

The best year


There are only a few days left for the year and I must say as far as I could remember, 2010 is the best year for me in my entire 48 years of life. There were several bad days over the year but the rest were quite easy going, though at times it seems a bit sedated but they were mostly enjoyable days. Even though I am not working nowadays it doesn't mean I have nothing to do ... just that I am not paid to do things for other people now. So, I do have the luxury of time and the days seem a bit longer but I don’t mind it at all. I really enjoyed the rush-free, pressure-less day to day activities.

This year I am glad to have spent a great amount of time with my family, wife and kids and also had plenty of time for myself and my friends. I used to be just a father to my kids and a husband to my wife. But now from my kids, I learned that I don’t have to be just a father, I can enjoy being a child again building a stronger bond with them. For my wife I don’t just to hold the responsibility of a husband but I am also a good friend.

I used to put up a mask to face the world and many times I felt so lonely when it seems that the world walked out of me. Now I can be exactly who I am … no mask, no show … just myself and I found out that when others walked out on me, my friends walked in.

I had the time to read some very good books and tried out many mouth watering recipes to the delight of my dinner guests. Though I have gained a few good pounds but I am fitter and healthier than ever, trekking regularly and playing a few good games of badminton every weekend with my sporting friends. I learned to stop and smell the flowers, appreciate the wonderful nature and enjoy a healthy lifestyle.

I am looking forward to the next year and all the years to come. Though I may be an old school type but I am not an old fashion person. I accept changes, welcome new ideas and I will continue to learn to be a better person. I am sure there will be a lot of changes and new things as I move on year to year … some may be planned, some expected, some already happening and some may not even exist now. And then there will be more changes. I will be happy to accept, adapt and embrace whatever that is coming. Like I always say “I am happy in advance”. Why? Because now I am already happy (in advance) with whatever life throws at me tomorrow ... accept it, adapt it, make do with whatever that it has to offer and make the best of whatever I already have. 

So I am really looking forward to some good years ahead. And on second thought, I shouldn’t say 2010 is the best year of my life … actually the best year is yet to come. 

December 10, 2010

It is never enough for one’s greed

I was struck speechless in a conversation during a social gathering. A few of us were talking about success, how one defines and measures success. One of the guys in the conversation group said something which I thought was really arrogant. He introduced himself as a senior manager of a large stock broking firm. From his outlook and disposition, you can tell he is a show off.  What he said really show how materialistic a person can be.

In a quite a boastful manner, he said that how successful a person is, depends on how greedy that person can be. His exact words were “To be successful, a person must be greedy … must never say enough”. Then he continued bluntly “Like it or not success is measured materialistically”. Honestly, I have no good words for this person and I don’t want to argue about what he said. He can have his point of views.

Of course I totally disagree with what he said. Let me tell you my opinion on success, greed and what is enough. Everyone is different. I may have simple needs, maybe you may need a little more and others may need a lot less than you and I. But then there are people who live on greed.

I am not sure about others but I make do with what I need and just “fit” things into my life. To me, whatever situation I am in, I don’t really have to worry about the “need to haves”. Somehow I make do with what I have and I don’t really have to struggle. It is always enough. My success is measured by how I pull through every day with what I can afford.

It is actually the “nice to haves” that people struggle to get. And it is always not enough because greed is pushing them perpetually to “fill” things into their lives. Their success is measured by the things they have to show. They think they are happy. They have forgotten that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting things they don’t have but rather of appreciating things that they already have.

Do you measure success materialistically? Nah … I don’t think so. I give you a good example. To me, my dad is a very successful person but he has nothing to show except for an old car and an old flat. He worked hard all his life and provided his wife and 5 children with all that is needed but nothing more. He died penniless but he lived his life well and done his part as a husband, as a father, as a provider and as a protector of his family. He has many friends and everywhere he goes, people always welcome him. If you search for the word “success” in my dictionary, you will find a picture of my father there.

You tell me you don’t have enough? I tell you this … you can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy. It is always enough for one’s need but it is never enough for one’s greed. The great Mahatma Gandhi once said something similar. He said “There is sufficiency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed”.

It is good to know when to say it is enough because enough is as good as a feast.