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Stop & Smile.

Do you realize how fast you are going in the daily madness? Do you feel the wind rushing through, while you speed on every day? Do you understand that the pace at which you are running to meet deadlines doesn’t let you live any moment?

Disclaimer. This is a true story.

When I was younger, I had a few favorite poems, one of them I clearly remember. It’s called slow dance. I had stumbled upon it in one of the chicken soup for the teenage soul books. And it simply refuses to get out of my head. Life is not a race, so take it slower it said.

Life is not a race, so take it slower it said.

As the days passed by, I didn’t actively remind myself of these lines. The fear of missing out, the constant to-do lists and the pressure to have a bucket list and fulfill it caught up. Then once in a while came days like today. Today, made me stop & smile.
And on autoplay, as though it was timed, my favorite poem played back on my mind:

Do you run through each day on the fly,
when you ask “How are you?”, do you hear the reply?
When the day is done, do you lie in your bed,
with the next hundred chores running through your head?”

I was invited back to my grad school as a panelist at an International Conference to speak about startups, the struggles, and benefits of doing what you love. On the panel alongside were big players in the Indian and Global market. I was overwhelmed, nervous, panicking all at once. And when the panel discussion ended, I was humbled at the thought of what just happened. You know how we constantly keep wishing for something to happen, I wished one day I can sip coffee out of a fancy take away paper mug and walk into an office.

I wished the office were my own, where my team would greet me when I came in. I wished I dressed a certain way, I wished I was called a certain name, I wished I was treated as a VIP, I wished I was the one inspiring someone in need. I wished I didn’t have too many wishes left, Phew. That’s exhausting. While today I realized that most of my wishes came true already. I made a new wish, I wish we could stop and smile at every tiny milestone we cross in our life.

When we move into a new apartment, when we buy our first car, when we get featured somewhere, when we finally find someone who brings us peace, when any of our little wishes come true, let’s stop & smile. Take a moment, Live that delight. After all it’s one wish off your ever increasing list. How about just smiling to that?

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And in-case you were wondering what my favorite poem is, well here goes:

Have you ever watched kids on a merry-go-round,
or listened to rain slapping the ground?

Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight,
or gazed at the sun fading into the night?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

Do you run through each day on the fly,
when you ask “How are you?”, do you hear the reply?

When the day is done, do you lie in your bed,
with the next hundred chores running through your head?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

Ever told your child, we’ll do it tomorrow,
and in your haste, not see his sorrow?

Ever lost touch, let a friendship die,
’cause you never had time to call and say hi?

You better slow down, don’t dance so fast,
time is short, the music won’t last.

When you run so fast to get somewhere,
you miss half the fun of getting there.

When you worry and hurry through your day,
it’s like an unopened gift thrown away.

Life isn’t a race, so take it slower,
hear the music before your song is over

 

 

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