My father started working at 6!

Earlier this month my father completed 40 years of his shop.

He’s 67, and had already worked in multiple “jobs”, before “starting on his own”. Here’s a journey of his work, starting from age 6!

1. Worked for FREE in a bakery at the age of 6, used to get crushed powder of toasts as daily “stipend”

2. Worked at two general stores in later summer vacations at school.
He was so much into cleanliness that once the shop owner’s bag of cash fell off from a higher shelf!
Guess what, my father had such a repute of honesty that the shopkeeper never changed its place!

3. Worked at a readymade garments shop as he “grew up” 🙂

4. Worked at a crockery of a relative, created a huge repute and profit for them, however, later the relative had to sell it off due to financial crunch

5. Worked as a typist at the age of 18, at one of the reputed shops in our city

6. Got placed at a factory by his employer, where he almost died by sinking in a pit while riding his cycle back home, and “someone magically appeared from nowhere” and saved him! Yes, he and a friend went to search for cycle the next day and got it 🙂

7. He found refute that day at a nearby factory, which later hired him. That factory was JK Paper Mills. He was even hired by DCM, Waterworks, and all the factories but he was underage!

8. Along with working at JK, he opened his shop on 05 August 1981. Used to work there in the mornings and nights.

9. Quit his job in October 1982, while his kids were 3 and 4 respectively. Talk risk!!

10. When he started, his shop was in a narrow street. His Uncle, in 1983, suggested to buy one of the new shops coming up at the main road. He didn’t have the deposit money. The bakery shop owner, with whom my father used to work “for free”, lent him the advance deposit. Till date, our shop is exactly at the same place.

11. Not to mention, he also used to do “flipping” by getting socks, watches from Delhi and selling them in our home town in Kota. However, he felt he wasn’t playing it ethical by showing a low-quality item as shiny and that was unfair to customers’ money.

Last year, as I was freelancing, I had once suddenly lost a high-ticket client. One morning I was sitting in my room and thinking, I saw my father doing his prayer rituals as usual.

He was as tensionless, as free and as “let life come as it wants to” attitude on his face.
If 40 years of business could keep him tension free, I had no right to get tensed that day.

That day, my father gave me hope.
Today as I asked him this entire story, he gave me the power of resilience.
And every day, he gives me the power of love by getting apples / mangoes for me (instead of bakery stuff that both my parents love :D)

We are not the best of friends, but he accepts me when I’m doing a headstand in the middle of the room, and I accept him when he “turns on auto-download” of WhatsApp forwarded pics, and together, we all are imperfectly perfect!

Just as we should be 🙂

Pro tips for productivity

  1. Go for a walk to the parking of your home’s building during working hours. We can’t wait for offices to open up, to get our much needed share of outdoors.
  2. Read a lot, baby!
  3. Be kinder than necessary.
  4. Request, instead of dictate.
  5. Apply #4 for yourself as well.

Productivity in WFH

  1. Read a book for 10 minutes in breaks.
  2. Don’t worry about WhatsApp validation. If it comes one day, some day you will be sad about WhatsApp criticism. Calmness in either is the juice.
  3. Write that mundane activity also down on paper.
  4. You have a life beyond the screen.
  5. People are good. Just that so much exposure to screen has lead their mind to stop being empathetic – which usually comes when we go out and have a walk 🙂

It’s been a while

It’s been a while, and all this while, I have been thinking of what I’ve lost. I never knew I loved my old work so much. Who misses work so much?!

Everyone has to lose everything some day. What stays back is how you responded to such losses.

You know what’s the worst part? A friend of mine is dealing with another loss and all this while I have been bringing her back. And she’s recovering quite well, despite the fact that she is the most vulnerable om the weekends.

Another example I see is of Brahma Kumaris. They had a well established network of services in India, when a senior Sister of the organisation was told to leave this and begin her services in London. And as much as she resisted it, her stint in London paved the way for more and bigger services.

Strange how “me” and “mine” works. While in reality, only God is mine. Because I am not this body, I am the observer in this body. That observer is answerable to God – to create karmas that set an example, not something that sets ego boundaries.

Nishtha, no we are not going back. Staying true to your karma is your dharma. And life always moves beyond.

Making of a Manager: 2.0

Since I’m juggling with my new role as a manager, I’m documenting all my experiences in this category of my blog.

Some recent life lessons:

  1. No one will value your time unless you do.
  2. Kindness is superpower.
  3. Be prepared for every type of issues. It will make you calmer.
  4. Give away the credit.
  5. Trust, but verify
  6. Appreciate in public. Criticise in person.
  7. Keep writing. NEVER EVER EVER EVERRR stop.
  8. Empathy. Be there for them. But don’t allow for lethargy in work.
  9. You can be friends and chill around; or get work done. Can’t do both.
  10. When you get work done, though, it does not mean that you have to be rude. You can still be fun and chill, but friendship is another dimension.
  11. Be kind when they screw up. We have NO IDEA what they are going through.
  12. Be honest. Because YOU are watching.
  13. What you think about your team in your head, is what will manifest on the outside.
  14. You don’t HAVE to speak when there is nothing to speak.
  15. If you do not require any follow-up, you are GOLD.
  16. If you follow-up with people when they are supposed to deliver, it shows how diligent you are.
  17. Leave signatures through your work and your vibes.
  18. Measure yourself. Because what does not get measured, is not treasured.
  19. Writing a progress mail to your manager helps. You get to know where you are, and where you could be going.
  20. And, don’t be too harsh on yourself.

The best people I work with…

A part of the work I do has these processes:

  • Go through the rough draft the client sent
  • Create a clickworthy post out of it
  • It gets posted on social media.

Mostly, the post is about adding value. Sometimes, that value added comes with some backlash from people (that is one of the secrets of getting viral…more about that later btw :D)

Now, there are two types of people I work with:

  1. Whenever the backlash from people points at the author (aka yours truly), my clients straight away state that they are the author. I love that so so soooo much! Standing as a guard to protect their people. Awesome folks they are 🙂
  2. They highlight a tiny spelling mistake for two consecutive weekly meetings. My writing for them hardly generates any virality. Because what they are always talking about is how will the people that know him, will respond.

I just love the type 1 clients. Never argue with them for money. They pay whatever I ask. Never interfere. Rather I request them to interfere.

Find clients like those, and keep upping your game. You will be left with awe, work you love, and most importantly, self respect.

My client ain’t responding!

Last Sunday, my client and I worked on a particular task to be done by him.

Today’s Friday, I didn’t get a response from him so far.

Should I be mad? (No, I don’t do that anymore.)
Should I remind? (Who am I? A primary class teacher who ruins the curiosity of a kid?)
Should I stop doing the work because he didn’t respond? (No, he didn’t hire me to do stuff when everything was going fine, I was hired to figure out stuff even when things weren’t fine.)

So, I went ahead with doing his stuff. Even if it was at 60% output, it was way better than 0% output.

And today he messaged that he delayed because of a due diligence audit.

See – such serious reason and I would have reasoned him to simply avoiding our work.

This not only applies to our professional life, rather also to our personal lives. We are creating mental constructs based on our assumptions of feeling worthless, while the reality is someone is trapped in other physical constructs.

Strange, no? Not really. We get to choose our thoughts baby!

Happy – not anymore?

Even thebiggest happiness could being about a place of sadness if you happen to compare yourself to others.

Someone else, younger than you, is going to get all the things you have been waiting for.

Does it feel bad! Maybe yes.

Should it feel bad? The answer to this could never be yes.

What’s the solution, then? The solution is to put yourself in more I more situations like these because that only would help you work harder and challenge yourself more often.

Think over it. Someone else won, you lost; and then you created your own plan of confidence a reality.