When Inspire Days – two days of celebration of learning put together by Sue Knight and her associates in India – was announced by Ramesh Prasad, I knew I had to attend it. It promised the two days would challenge, provoke, amuse, fire up, tickle, shock and overwhelm those who would attend.
The list of trainers from India and abroad looked formidable going by their brief write up. And I was and am convinced, anything Sue Knight touches, would be embellished.
The two days of learning fell on 20th and 21st of January this year. Only one day separated my daughter’s wedding on Jan 18 and Inspire Days. So during those two days at Inspire Days, the excitement of the wedding was still swirling in my head. And, there were too many things happening. Some of those did not catch my attention and some learnings have been simmering in my consciousness all this while.
For me, any learning becomes more complete once I reflect and make sense of them. Then as I express my understanding through posts in this blog, they become my paths on which I walk – with varying frequency. So, I wish I had written this post immediately after those two days when the learnings were fresh in my mind.
I console myself, there is a unifying thread running through all sessions and understanding one very well signifies I have a good grasp of the thread running through the rest.
Arunima’s session Inside Outside still lingers in my mind. She has made giant strides since I met her about a year back. In addition to her poise and elegance, there is a calm assurance about her now. She brought home very clearly during her presentation that my confident personality would emerge not because of the care I take to create an image on the exterior. I would stand out instead because of the centredness and alignment I feel inside of me.
During and after the session, my very recent elaborate experience of selecting my shirt and suit for my daughter’s wedding kept coming to me. I had requested the help of a friend of mine to help me choose my suit. On the way to the store he told me he makes it a point to get the best value for his money when he shops. So, the selection stretched to more than an hour against the hurried 5 minutes I am used to. This time I enjoyed the ritual of trying on different suits, seeing myself in the mirror in various poses, till I got exactly what I wanted. I even discovered that my correct shirt and pants fit is one size smaller than what I used to wear.
There is a tendency to do the same thing I am used to….even when the needs and seasons are different. It takes awareness to know my changing needs – inside and outside.
The shirts and pants I bought recently make me feel good whenever I wear them. The feel-good-factor sinks deep enough to affect my confidence levels. I know for sure, every time I buy clothes it is going to be a deliberate and deeply aware experience, a merging of the inside outside from now. What I wear and how I wear them would complement the feeling of alignment and comfort I feel inside.
Inside of myself, I feel congruent and at peace because of what I am and becoming. As Arunima said, as I transform inside out, I feel really, really good inside and then what I wear only accentuates the great feeling I nurture inside.
More than the care I take in wearing my clothes, wearing a genuine calm smile stemming from my deep appreciation and love for people and life is something to work on. Work on? Silly, smile is the inside bubbling over to the outside – happy for the congruence.
I went to Colin’s session on Clueless to Curiosity because I have always felt challenged in this area. He gave us a mathematical puzzle to solve. It remained a puzzle for a long time till we ventured into solving it. It took a long time, and our group nearly got it right. Our approach to solving the problem was right, only we made an error in calculation. Otherwise we could have solved the problem and discovered for ourselves the pattern in solving similar problems.
Someone in the group asked Colin whether there is a way of getting to the pattern without doing all the work. He said, it is necessary to stay with the problem and solve it, to arrive at the pattern or formula.
I am challenged by a few things in life. Accounts at my office, for one. Finding the right pattern out of the maze of roads as I travel is another. These challenges have created difficulties for me in varying degrees.
When I am lost on the roads, instead of cursing my stars, I can relax and feel happy about the adventure in discovering a new part of the city. Chances are, as I navigate happily through new territories, I would make sense of the maze and find a pattern.
Or, when I am faced with the task of going through accounts at office, I can listen through my mind’s ears to the stories of the people in our office who make our customers very happy and who in turn pay for the services happily. Or feeling grateful for the money that is helping us build our future.
Writing blog posts or running a marathon happen after I show up and give it everything I have got. Every post is a part of myself, a creation I bring out into the world. Every marathon I run is a triumph of the belief that I have what it takes to move beyond endurance levels, one step at a time, through thousands of steps.
Mathematics. Business. Life. Devotion to them bring them alive. Patterns emerge. And the magic happens.
This understanding is priceless. Poring through every details with focus and energy because I love my business. It deserves nothing less than my devotion…..bhakti.
I have written about what I learned from Arunima and Colin. They are my coaches and friends.
Why didn’t I learn as much from the others? May be I did not put as much heart into understanding their messages as I did for Arunima and Colin. And, understanding happens with the heart. The best learnings do not come accompanied by thunder and lightning, they happen in the quietness of recognition and understanding, in awareness.
I remember sitting smugly during some sessions with an air of knowing – like an all knowing wall that would not let anything pass.
Reading through the profiles of all those who made their presentations, I am awed by their credentials. I lost the opportunity to imbibe the essence of a few of them, from their sharing.
I read somewhere about the vast repertoire of ignorance. Knowledge limits at times. It keeps the child in me in the fringes. When the feeling of curiosity dims, that is the setting in of old age.