To the task mistress with love.

Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth President of th...

Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the United States of America (Image via Wikipedia)

I wrote a letter to myself this week. I plan to read it next year. It has a kinder tone than I expected. A year ago, It would have been a much harsher, irritated tone. I wrote the letter following my post, The luxury of being average and after listening to a TED talk by the historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin. She spoke about the lives of  two past US presidents: Abraham Lincoln and Lyndon Johnson. You can find the video of her talk here. I understood that I have been imbalance between three realms: work, love and play. Especially play. As you will see from the video, Lincoln appears to have found this balance leading to a fulfilling legency, while Johnson did not. Doris is a great storyteller, a skill I always admire.

In the letter, I tell myself that I’m good-natured, clever and fun to be around. I remind myself of how blessed I am to be alive, healthy and surrounded with the goodness of love. I also try to persuade myself to be less judgemental of my failings and to aspire equally for play and love as I do for achievement (work).

Maybe the older I get, the wiser I’ll be about these things. I’m glad I got to write this letter although I feel some sadness that I hadn’t written it before. Or perhaps someone else should have looked out for me and told me these things a long time ago. Well, maybe somebody did. I was probably too busy beating myself to death about the small things. I’m pleased that I’ve finally arrived in this place. Thanks for reading :).

A special thanks to Kaushic Kalyanaraman who inspired me by sending the TED video to me.

The king, his speech and why I’m going to rule the world

His Majesty King George VI of the United Kingdom.

His majesty King George VI of the United Kingdom (Image via Wikipedia)

I get very reflective after seeing certain movies. My friends are usually like, ‘Geez, it’s just a movie and you got all THAT from it??’ But I do. I’m a rather deep person and I find it easy to not only spot the less obvious lessons but to also draw a parallel to my life.

So, it’s no surprise that after seeing The King’s Speech (starring Colin Firth and Geoffrey Rush) a few days ago, I started to get introspective (as usual). It was one of the best movies I’ve ever seen. Without giving too much away, the king of a quarter of the world (King George VI) stammered and so dreaded giving speeches. His courage, the friendships that develop and the enviable support of his wife were the things I found most moving. Now I’m determined not to let my imperfections stop me from taking chances and seeking out opportunities. Together with recent insights gained on my personal development journey, I have learned that:

1. I don’t have to know everything or be good at it all. I can surround myself with people smarter than me or those who know what I don’t know. Learn from people, instead of shying away or envying them from afar. Even Mark Zuckerberg and Barack Obama consistently do this. They both surround themselves with people who have strengths in areas were they are weak.

2. I have to leverage my sense of humour. If I’m going to take chances, I will be rejected more than I’ll be accepted. When things look bleak, laughter is a good idea. The other option is of course, to cry, which is not really an option. Sense of humour is crucial if I’m going launch a business at any point in the future.

3. I need to develop and cherish my support network. Friends who encourage and support me will literally save my life. They will understand my moodiness in rejection and rejoice in my acceptance. Priceless.

4. It is FAR more important to be courageous than it is to be perfect. For some reason that I’m sure I’ll soon figure out, the re-affirmation of this makes me feel as light as air.

Needless to say, I highly recommend the movie to everyone who is living and breathing. The hyperlink above leads to the movie trailer so have a look. It is a true story and it speaks volumes about how even the people we admire from a distance have deep struggles and inadequacies. Sometimes, we get close to people and find that they are not as admirable as we initially thought. Other times, in exceptional encounters, we find that they are even more admirable than meets the eye. This latter realisation is the case in The King’s Speech.

Sigh! It feels good to be human….. Long live the King! (Of course, he’s long dead but you get the general idea ;).)

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