Dec 31, 2013

2013 and a 2014 look ahead…

It has been a good year, all in all. Can’t complain on any front since life’s been good. Did a couple of things, some personal achievements, some holidays and a lot of activity. And am thankful to Providence for each of these things!

For starters, we did what I never thought we would. We sold the apartment which I initially thought was our dream house, and had never intended to leave for anything in the world. Turns out our feelings weren't strong enough, and we fell out of love with the house , sold it , and moved on from it physically , emotionally and mentally, all in no time at all. The pretext was to buy a bigger apartment, which we didn’t in the end, but I guess we were both ready to move on from that old apartment. One of the most impulsive yet very well turned out decision of our lives, I must say! I thought I’d be insecure without my own house, but the bigger realization was that we were both nomads deep inside, and the obligation of not paying an EMI made us realize that we like this life better than anything else. It makes me feel free, unattached and gives me the independence to do anything I want, which I wouldn’t trade for anything! We rented a larger apartment which brings us closer to our goal of having a better social life, we spent a bomb in doing up this apartment, and are happy! That’s what matters, right!

We, the husband and I, took a hard look at how close we are to our target-retirement-assets, during the whole real estate transactions and figured out that we were both close and yet far from it, which was a good revelation to have. That makes the money goals quite clear, and we both know what we are working for, and towards. A good place to be in!

Work has been good. There is a very welcome job change, something that teaches me something new every day. And am more clear in what I want to do with my work life – To work for passion, not for money. On that note, here’s one of the most impactful lines I read this year, something that made me change quite a few things in my work life, and is currently my work signature -

When you look back at yourself six months from today and don’t feel embarrassed by your naiveté, there’s a problem. That means you’re not learning, growing.

And the decision to not have children still continues. We still are asked the same old questions about children and why we don’t have one yet, but they have decreased a lot. Either people are growing sensible or we are developing a thicker skin. Parents have accepted that we have a mind of our own, and have stopped expecting a grandchild from us. Once we got to this point, both of us have become quite open and aren't shying away from telling people that we are childless by choice !

I got a tattoo this year, my second one. Based on Impermanence, I have the line ‘Sarvam Anityam’ inked in Devanagari lipi on my wrist. Its such a pretty tattoo that I still stare at it lovingly, a full 3 months after I got it done! The lines mean what I believe in strongly, and what I try to practice every single day of my life, yet to not much success. This line also reminds me what Vipasana taught me, and how I should be detached from everything and yet be attached to everything! Unlike my first tattoo, I wasn’t scared of this second one. I was looking forward to it, I had thought about the lines a long time ago, and this was like an craving I had to crave in to! Here it is…

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A great holiday happened. In fact, two great holidays. One was our regular annual vacation to Goa, where all we did was take long walks on the pristine white beaches (yes, there are a few of them even now in Goa) and drink bottles of port wine. The other was a dream vacation to Greece. It was originally planned as a getaway vacation, but I added a fitness goal to it and made it into a hiking holiday, something that worked out so well, that am now inclined to take up atleast one activity based holiday per year! There was one other vacation that happened towards the end of the year, but that wasn’t even one. It was intended to be a annual reading holiday, but turned out to be a driving holiday. We got to Mudumalai, took one look around at our surroundings, realized we were too bored by that place, and drove back to Hyderabad the next day! Just an example of how we are letting our impulses take over these days… its like the older we grow, we have more freedom! :-D

To gear up for the hiking holiday, I took up working out, something that I had never done before. Found a great instructor who is making me realize every single day what I am capable of doing with my body, and what I could do if I realize its full potential, and how my body reacts when I abuse it with crappy food. What we do is programmed strength training, and am now all set to have a few fitness goals for 2014. On that note, healthy eating has also increased. This year, even the husband has been nice enough to play along with me in eating the millet-heavy diet am laying on his table!

Read quite a bit, though not as much as I wanted to. 76 books in one year is a good number, but its not as good as 122 books in an year , no? Blogged a bit. Did a very taxing month-long project where I posted one salad recipe per day. Gave one health based talk at a hospital. Got mentioned in a newspaper, thanks to a friend who was writing the article. Did one photo shoot for someone, for which I didn’t get the credit. Yeah , yeah… lessons are always learnt!

Friends… where shall I begin and where shall I end. Without being too sentimental, let me just say in one sentence what I feel about the people in my life. I am truly thankful to God (am almost an atheist, so that’s saying a lot!) for all the delightful people in my life today, every single one of them. I might not meet them every single day, some I haven't met in months, but all of them that matter are still a part of my life. Over the years, I’ve figured out that I need to keep away from people who don’t add a positive influence to my life, and have been largely successful too.  Guess that’s one of the perks of growing older… you discover whom you like to hang out with , you discover your own self via the people you are with. And yet again, am truly truly thankful to each of my friends. And I hope to be as good a friend to them all as they are to me. Like I always tell the husband, we must’ve done something right in our past lives to be blessed to be around such wonderful people.

2014 brings with it a lot of plans, decisions, goals and hopes!

There is an obligatory fitness goal, which I intend to reach this year. Yes, there’s nothing better than fitting into less sized clothes, and smiling as people ask you if you’ve lost weight.
I’ll hope to read to at least 50 books this year. Unlike my old apartment where it was only me and the husband, there is a thriving social life in this new place that we moved into. So anything more than 4 books a month would mean that am missing out some good girlfriends time! :-)
May be another tattoo, but am not sure. :-)
Take my food blog a little more seriously. And invest in it. On that note, take my food photography a little more seriously too. Both of them need a lot of TLC!
Meet more of my old friends. Meet more new interesting people. Keep people who don’t mean well out of my life.
Take more holidays, one every quarter, may be! ;-)
Keep working for passion!
Hang out more with the adorable daughters and sons of my friends. And with those wonderful nieces and nephews am gifted with!

Lets hope that the Universe lets me follow each of these plans through this new year. And wish you all a very happy new year! :-)

14 comments:

  1. Hey Preethi, I used to read your earlier blogs and i have no idea now how i chanced upon this link hopping from one link to another. Each of your blogs had a distinct character and phase of your life, and i loved reading into the growth as a person that each of those blogs recorded. I have to say, i like this current one the best. Keep rocking!
    -Ferret

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    1. Thank you Ferret. Did you also comment before? I feel like I know you ... :)

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  2. I know that feeling. The satisfaction of the year passed and the anticipation of the year to come! Very few can look back and be happy with how they've lived.

    http://fullyrandomandabstract.blogspot.com/2013/12/i-am-big-girl-now-i-think.html

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  3. Great! Where did you get the phrase for the tattoo from?

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    1. Its a Pali sloka and is used during Vipasana discourses. I just translated it to Sanskrit.

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  4. This is so refreshing ... I wish I could pick out something specific in this post and claim I liked it the most but truth be told, it is an amazing sum total of some brilliant parts. Thank you for sharing yourself so givingly.

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  5. Thank you. Those are some really nice words you said about the post! Am really really glad that you found this post refreshing! 😊

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  6. Hey Preethi, thanks for visiting. Not sure if we have crossed paths in the past or no but it sure feels like we have. Tried travelling the digital history but I have been around so much that I am unable to pinpoint the time when we might have.

    But going forward, let's keep in touch and hopefully, keep writing! :)

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  7. Oh By the way, I just remembered, we have indeed crossed paths. Here is the proof! -- The Smiling Girl ... http://principia--obnoxiousia.blogspot.mx/2006/05/tears-of-84.html

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  8. Hi, yours is one blog I come to just like that and go away feeling very can't-say-what, but very positive. Thanks for all the writing. - Soumya

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    1. Thanks Soumya. I feel good when I know that the posts exude positivity :D

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