How to be a bad guy

Disclaimer: This blog is specifically for people like me who are inherently nice, they need this the most.

Has anyone told you you’re a nice person? Do you care a little too much about everything? Do you put everyone else first but nobody puts you first? Do you apologize, a lot, even when its not your fault? Do you pretend to agree with everyone? Do you take extreme measures to avoid conflicts? Do you think you’re responsible for how people feel? Did you ever feel that if you were an asshole things would’ve been a lot easier for you? If you said yes multiple times then I have news for you (which I received recently ), you’re a chronic people-pleaser.

I was kind of shocked when I realized that now even being nice is a problem!? Well yeah, when you’re suffering from a painful migraine but you can’t tell your friend that you’d like to go home and take your medication rather than go to a restaurant, and force yourself to eat with the headache, when you tell your Uber driver to drop you few miles away from your home so that it won’t be inconvenient for him, but inconvenience for you is no big deal, when you’re suffering from food poisoning but you don’t say no to work from home, even though your teammates could do the same work, when someone lies to you and you just smile and change the topic because it would put that person in an awkward position, when you put on a little less makeup so that your female colleagues won’t feel they haven’t been putting in any effort, (okay I know your list may be different than me) but you know when you do such things just because you’re supposed to be nice, that’s a huge problem, not for others but for you.

I have done this all my life, I’d do these grand gestures for everyone, I’ll go out of my way for people I don’t even care that much and completely abandon my own physical/emotional/mental well being and when the time would come they’d usually put everything else before me. And I’d be devastated, I’d feel like a victim, because I was perfect, I’d been so nice, I’ve done everything by the book and yet I’ve been rejected. So like everyone else I’ll go to social media and post some emotional bullshit about how bad the world is for kind and nice people. I hope I’m not the only one here who has done this, that would be really awkward and embarrassing.

Also, I realized how many years I’ve wasted pleasing people, thinking about them, making them feel comfortable, walking on eggshells with their likes and dislikes, that I’ve completely lost my self in this process, seeking validation and approval from almost everyone to make myself feel good enough. I never once thought what if nobody cared about me what my life would like then? And it dawned on me does anyone really even care about me? I mean yes my family and handful of friends do, but they’d support me no matter what, others mostly won’t, they are too busy thinking and caring about their own selves. They might think about me for a second, make an opinion (which can be wrong) and then completely forget about me. And all I’m doing here is trying to make people think good about me for one second, trying to change one fragment of their thought? Is that even worth it, making sacrifices for no apparent reason, and innumerable times a day! And then one day you wake up and realize you’ve wasted your life away doing things you didn’t like, and now nobody really cares for all the things you’ve done for them because it was supposed to be your duty?! Well, I don’t know about you, but I’d rather care about myself more from now on than to wake up with a midlife crisis in few years and stuck in shitty situations.

Okay, if that wasn’t convincing enough, how about this- Have you once in your life seen a bad-ass personality on screen and wished it was you? I have, almost everyday! And it’s never with good guys. Well, we do love our heroes, on the other hand we love anti-heroes a little more. And I think you already know why, they don’t give a fuck what people think of them. They don’t do stuff because it will get them compliments in life, they do things because they want to, because they like it, and they’re really good at it. I’m not telling you turn into an anti-hero (which, by the way, would be so cool) but may be try this out- think of your alter ego, your ideal self, what he/she would do in a tricky situation? I’m most certain they will not care so much.

So next time try this- you’re at some bill counter and there’s a large queue behind you, take some more time than usual, do your thing, let people get pissed a little. I know, even thinking about this gives me crippling anxiety and that’s why it needs to be changed. The thing is as psychopaths need tiny bit of empathy to keep them grounded, we need a little apathy from people around us so we can depend on ourselves for the validation that we seek.

Why I almost gave up as an artist.

From my first memory as a child I remember drawing all the time, on paper, slate, walls, anywhere and everywhere. I was always scribbling something even if it was nonsense, and I loved it, but my parents loved it more. It kept me busy, distracted, and happy all the time. Painting has been in my family since few generations, my grandfather ran away from a large family business, and made a living from his drawing skills, and became a street painter. My father followed his legacy, but made very sure I take this skill as a hobby only and never pursue it as a profession. He taught me and my friends basic drawing stuff, and most of the times we would even help him paint banners and boards, it was a fun childhood. I was always-always creating something, and when things got bad around me I knew what to do. I survived so much throughout my childhood because I had a hobby.  It was my happy place, a getaway to my own world.

As my family moved from place to place, I met new people, made new friends. It always came as surprise to everyone as how I good was at drawing and they always ended up showering me with compliments. It made me feel good about myself. I had no idea that I am talented, I had a skill, that I am an artist, all this was news to me. You see, in my family drawing and crafting is such a subnormal thing that no one really cares even if you can draw a hyper-realistic portrait, so compliments, appreciation were literally non-existent, and I was okay with it until I knew better. Now that I knew how compliments made me feel(it was some kind of high), my whole purpose to draw and paint changed. I was continuously trying to impress people, chase that high, chase that validation, that I am something, I am good enough.

Then came out Facebook. Do I even need to tell you what happened next? Yeah you guessed it, all those likes, comments, sharing, from people I knew and people I don’t, brought a new high. It was like I was addicted. First time in my life I felt I mattered, people saw me differently as I am more, something more than just a shy weird girl who hardly speaks. I was famous, everyone wanted me to draw them all the time. And I did, I drew for so many people, even the ones I didn’t care about, just so I can prove to everyone and also to me that how good I am. I went a little further to impress boys with my skill, so they’ll go out with me. I know its so fucked up, but hey I was a lonely teenager and I did what I could to survive. I soon realized half of my so called friends didn’t really care about me at all, they only wanted a free painting. Many of my acquaintance were pissed when I begun to say no to their selfish offer, that was fun.

Social media brought something along more, it was the awareness, or self consciousness that I was not the only artist on the planet. There were millions of them, and so much better than me, I was nothing compared to them. My whole belief system as to how good I was shattered so easily. I was full of doubt, jealousy, and under so much pressure to be perfect, that I stopped drawing altogether for few years. I couldn’t do it anymore. And whenever I did people constantly told me how good I was, and how much money I could make out of it, if I started monetizing it, including my own father. Can you believe this betrayal! Because I could not. One guy I dated even went further to say to me, “Okay nice! Now what? You completed the painting, now whats the point? What’s the motivation ahead?” And I seriously had no idea. This one sentence triggered a massive crippling nihilistic-existential crisis in me. I mean he was right, what was the point of all this? Why am I even drawing if I cannot make money out of it? Anyway, I’ll be dead soon and I’ll be forgotten and this paintings will turn to dust, so why waste time?

This particular thought never left my mind. Until one day, my anxiety went through the roof, things got really dark around me and the only way out seemed like picking up a pen and paper. It didn’t matter what I was drawing, how perfect it was, I didn’t think even once how many likes it can get, if this painting is even worth any money, I didn’t think at all. I just painted for few hours, and somehow I painted all my anger, sadness and frustration on that paper. It made me feel relieved, brought a different sense of calm. And it occurred to me, that this is why I do it, I don’t do it for other people, I don’t do it to be famous, I definitely do not do it for money. This is for me and me completely, this is my coping mechanism, my self expression, these are my thoughts, my values. And that should be enough motivation. Since then I am also working on my belief system and making sure, that things like this wont affect my self-esteem, as this is a small part of me, and doesn’t define me completely.

So, this is why I wrote this blog post to remind myself, if I ever forget, as to why I paint, and also to let you all know that next time, do not come up to me and tell me how much money I can make from my paintings unless you’re going to buy them.

Have a good time quarantining! 

New year, New me

Yeah, I know January is over and so are our resolutions. Nothing really changed, it’s the same us that we were on the midnight of December 31st. All that motivational bullshit about new year new me is gone within a month. But you know what, I think this is the perfect time to write this blog post now that the trial month is over.

So what were your resolutions? Did you have a list of things you wish you can change about yourself? Yeah me too. I don’t want to sound preachy, but that’s exactly why we fail. We try to change every aspect of ourselves all at once. We are not going to turn into some hypothetical ideal version of ourselves simply because Earth completed its single revolution while we were doing the same shit that we do every other day.

Ever heard of this quote:

If nothing changes, nothing changes. If you keep doing what you’re doing, you’re going to keep getting what you’re getting. You want change, make some.

Courtney C. Stevens, The Lies About Truth

I know that was extemely preachy. So how to make a change you ask me? As a person who repeatedly failed every years resolutions but finally accomplished one last year, and has read several self-help books and watched almost every video Matt D’Avella has made, I think I’m highly eligible to answer this question.

  • First things first, throw away your list of resolutions. It’s really not working and you know it.
  • Now, think about one thing, one single thing that you can change, one thing that you need to change about yourself which will help you immensely with your physical and mental well-being. You know exactly what that thing is deep down. Do not wait for circumstances to take over where you’re forced to make this change. It can be losing/gaining weight, quit smoking/drinking, quit that job you hate, or something as simple as learning a new skill. Take a day, a week or even a month to think about what your thing is. It’s a lot easier when you’re focusing on a single thing.
  • Now that you have realised what you want to change and it all seems daunting and overwhelming- start with research, Google the shit out of it, break it into mini steps, start with something small and then stick to it.
  • The key is not working towards an end goal but to make it as your lifestyle, to make it a habit and not to rely on motivation or willpower. (Atomic Habits, by James Clear is the holy grail about building good habits)
  • Of course you’re going to fail in between and thats okay. But don’t wait for next Monday, next month or next year to start all over again. It’s never too late to be the person you want to be.

So next year, when you look back you might not have changed everything on your list, but you would have had changed one huge thing, and I think that’s enough for you to start your new year with a brand new you. And then you can brag about it all over social media, around your friends and family or even write a blog post about it like I did, who knows!

And if you can take one thing from this, take this- I believe that there are three types of people, one who have accepted their fate and let themselves go thinking change is not in their hands. Others, who hate themselves so much that they want to change everything about themselves. And lastly, people who know they are enough and deserve the world, and wouldn’t settle for anything less than that, therefore, they put in the time and effort and make things happen for them. So which one are you?

You can read my last New Years blog here.

My hair loss story

Now, when hair loss is currently prevalent in Indian film industry, let me grab this opportunity and write about my hair loss journey.

I went through two surgeries when I was 11 and 13 (I’ll keep that story for some other blog). And, if that wasn’t enough, I spent all my teenage life struggling with PCOD (hormonal disorder). All those medications caused a profound effect on my beloved hair. Losing hair as a kid is every horrible adjective you can think of.

It’s like you can’t sleep without fear of hair fall, you can’t eat whatever you want, you can’t go out and play or attend any social events. You even dread going to school every day, because people are going to notice, kids are going to tease you. It forms this deep connotation inside you that looks are everything. It’s different when you’re in your 20s or 30s because you’ve had the privilege to be a carefree kid and now you’re old enough to handle things on your own. On the other hand, losing hair as a kid? It can fuck you up (not going to sugarcoat that). I isolated myself for almost a decade. I had really low self-esteem and I hated myself for so long because, somehow, I felt it’s all my fault. I was the broken one. I accepted really shitty people in my life and let them control me. I felt like an impostor as if they see me for who I am, they would leave me. It further developed into anxiety and depression. But the truth was, no matter how many people truly loved me for who I am, it wouldn’t matter because I needed to love myself and accept myself the way I am, as there was literally nothing wrong with me. The human body is very complex, and sometimes it doesn’t work in your favour, and it doesn’t mean you should stop living.

So yeah, when people reminisce about their childhood, I just sit over there like, nope, don’t want to go through those series of unfortunate events again. And, if you’re thinking that I’m exaggerating this blog a little too much then please accept the fact that you have a head full of hair. I mean we want to believe something as absurd as our hair is not such an important part of our lives but it absolutely is.

Hair is everything. We wish it wasn’t so we could actually think about something else occasionally. But it is. It’s the difference between a good day and a bad day. We’re meant to think that it’s a symbol of power, that it’s a symbol of fertility. Some people are exploited for it and it pays your fucking bills. Hair is everything.

– Fleabag

Its how people perceive you. Your romantic and social life can take a hit. Especially, in our Indian society where the beauty standards start with women having dark, thick and long hair. Even though it’s very common for men to deal with hair loss, hardly anyone talks about hair loss in women. It is equally common. The only time when hair loss is acceptable in a woman is if she is old, dying or dealing with cancer, or else everyone makes you feel like a disgrace. The guilt and shame they make you go through is tremendous. I mean why would anyone on earth be like, you know what I don’t want my hair anymore. Wouldn’t it be really cool if people can see my scalp? Nobody wants that unless you are really into the bald look, then go for it.

Anyway, when I gave up trying to regrow my hair and started focusing on my mental and physical well being, I was fortunate enough to get 50% of my hair back. They are not perfect, but I love them the way they are. And when I finally came to terms with my flaws, and learned to laugh at them, people seemed to accept me even more. And I’ve realised this one thing- in the end, what really matters is what’s inside your head rather than what’s on your head. Am I right?

Also remember, do not click on those hair regrowth ads on the internet, they simply redirect to porn. Apparently, everything redirects to porn. *sigh*

Have a good hair day, folks!

Yes girl

When I was young I said yes to whatever people asked from me. I had no idea that I had a choice to say no, I blame it mostly on my upbringing, shyness and my low self-esteem. I did so many things I did not want to do because, well, I’ve been a people pleaser, until someone explained to me I am no longer a child and I have the power to say no, take care of myself and even survive if someone doesn’t like me for my choices, etc, etc. and that absolutely blew my mind. And, since then (spoiler alert) I have been saying no to almost everything I can say no to.

A friend asking for a movie? No. Some money? No. A date? Oh god no. A weekend outing, a little trip? New friends? Any social event? Trying something new? No, no, no, just no. I’m going to be in my bed with my laptop, where I’m most comfortable and safe, doing absolutely nothing at all. This is what happens when you find that sweet-sweet spot in your comfort zone. I had no dreams, no goals, no future, apparently no life. I was slowly dying in my bed every weekend, and I was like, “Eh! there’s no hope for me. Something bad happened to me, so I’m going to give up on everything. I’m going to push everyone away and become a loner and talk to no one. This is my life now.” And sadly, it really was.

I think Netflix (my only true friend at that time), sensed this in some way and recommended a movie called “Yes Man”. It starred Jim Carrey (my childhood crush) so I was already sold. Twenty minutes into the movie and it felt like I was Jim Carrey- ignores everyone’s call, avoids conversations at work, flaking on friends, forgetting a close friends engagement, never leaving the house, single, lonely and anxious. OMG! did someone stalk me and wrote this script? What was going on! It was surreal. Okay, I am exaggerating, but it was very close to what I had become.

In the movie, Jim Carrey participates in a self-help program where he is forced to say yes to everything for a year, which he does dread initially, but once he gets hang of it, he does great things (no spoiler alerts here, watch the movie please). It changes his life, it changes him as a person, he hits new highs and lows, he learns so much about himself, he goes way out of his comfort zone and realizes it was not that hard. I know its just a movie and things like these probably won’t happen to me in real life, but who cares, at least I’ll be living my life to the fullest.

And since then I’ve said yes to things I would have never imagined. I didn’t wait for people to ask me so that I can yes, I started out small, like asking people out, talking to someone new, saying yes to the new dress I never thought I could pull off, taking myself on a date, saying yes to meet new people, new projects, yes to making more money, have a better physique, actually anything that’s going to make me uncomfortable but in the end I’ll be content that at least I tried.

You know, the truth is, it wasn’t that I had become very comfortable with my life, to the contrary, I was fucking terrified of change and failure. I’ve been afraid of almost everything, all my life and I was sick and tired of fear deciding what my life should look like. So I decided to say yes, yes to new experiences, memories, to the things I always wanted to do but never did, to things I’m really terrified of, things I love and enjoy, things I know I’ll regret if I missed them, I’ll be saying yes to all these things, but, on the other hand,  I don’t want to say yes to things just to please people, to cover up my insecurity, or anything that’s harmful to my mental and physical wellbeing, because what you say yes to is also important.

Do watch the movie if you haven’t already, it may change your life like it did for me.

DISCLAIMER: Do not say ‘yes’ to stupid things and blame it on me or the movie.

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Problems of being an introvert.

Being an introvert is really easy. You don’t have to constantly plan your outings each and every weekend, you are comfortable enough to do things on your own, and you love it. You don’t have to keep up with hundreds of your friends like other extroverts, you only have few and they are great. You save so much money by staying home and doing nothing, its outrageous. You don’t need people to make you feel comfortable, you are good on your own, you are more independent than you know. You get to observe so many things being in the background, which other people tend to miss out. It’s like a bliss if you want it to, but sometimes its also a nightmare.

  • People think you’re arrogant or a snob because you don’t talk much. Also, thanks to your resting bitch face.

  • You suck being in contact with your friends, family, and colleagues. There’s just not enough time for yourself.

  • People constantly keep asking you why are you quiet and if you’re okay.

  • Getting exhausted within an hour of social event. And then dragging yourself until the end.

  • When you want to impress your crush/date and you have to go full extrovert. Can’t take a risk of being yourself.

  • People are shocked to see what a deep thinker you are and how many hidden talents you got because apparently in our world being quiet means you’re dumb.

  • People who are smooth talker will always be favoured more no matter how hard you work or how talented you are.

  • Every damn thing is either exhausting or overwhelming. Phone calls, meetings, dates,parties, trips, even vacations.

  • You’re a good listener. Yeah, that’s a problem because when people find some one, who genuinely listens to them they can’t stop talking or complaining.

  • You’re low key jealous of extroverts. How and where on earth did they find this never ending energy source. I can’t even.

Jealous GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY

But when you finally open up to someone you know its going to be special.

 

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You know I can’t be found with you

I’m here, sitting in your room because you keep telling me that what we have is a secret and nobody should know. I like it when you call me your secret, it makes me feel special.

I also like your hair and the sound of your voice. I love how perfectly messy your hair always is. And when you wear that black shirt, it literally makes me weak in my knees. It’s such a disappointment that you never look at me the way I look at you. I wish you would.

We talk, day in and day out, we can’t stop, but it’s weird how we never talk about me, its always about you. But I don’t mind, I can’t get enough of your voice. And, every time I tell you that this is the last time I’m seeing you, you pull me back in with your words as if you exactly know how to make me stay and how to keep me wanting more. So I stay, even though I hate myself more than the last time.

Sometimes you do take me out, hiding from everyone, because I know I can’t be found with you. And when we are with our friends you’re so busy talking to the girls, that you completely forget about me. It reminds me of my dad, cold and distant, right there beside me yet never there, and still, I like it. I like how it makes me burn.

So I let it all out, empty threats, spewing poison, I pour my heart out and wish you’d just listen to me once. I’m a mess but I don’t care anymore and neither do you. You just stand there and tell me how crazy I am and how impossible I am to handle. And I believe you, I believe its all my crazy, I believe its all in my head, as it cannot be you. You seem perfect. It’s me, who is flawed, has always been. So, I accept defeat and you promise me this is the last time we are fighting, even though we both know it’s not.

But I never learn, because, here I am again, sitting in your room.

 

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I am.

I am aggressive, it makes me passionate.

I am angry it keeps the fire inside me burning.

I am sensitive, I call it being kind and compassionate.

I am vulnerable, but it helps me open up to people.

I am anxious, it makes me face my fear head-on.

I am hurt, it only makes me understand how deep pain is.

I am sad, because of which I know how fleeting happiness is.

I am confused so that I can figure out where exactly I want to be.

I am afraid, but it never did stop me from being who I am.

I am disappointed, it will only make me try harder.

I am dramatic because I would not settle for anything less than I deserve.

If you think emotions are what makes you weak than you’re wrong. Emotions are hard like really hard, and to accept them is what makes you the strongest person.

So I am all of these things and if that’s what makes me crazy. Be it.

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Problems of clumsy people

I knew I am a really clumsy person since I was a kid. And I’d always dreamt that maybe someday I’ll stumble across a hot guy and my hair will come undone, l will lose my glasses, he will look straight into my sad eyes and he’ll fall in love with me. You know, how it happens in the movies. Well, *spoiler alert*, that never happened. Only if clumsiness was this romantic and safe, but it’s not. It’s like:
  1. You fall. Like a lot. You can fall just by standing. That’s your superpower.
  2. You always have bruises. And sometimes mystery bruises as well because you have no idea where that came from.
  3. You dread wearing white. It’s just not meant for you, you’ll have to agree on that.
  4. Your phone screen has cracked so many times you have just given up fixing it.
  5. There’s a reason why you don’t drive. LOL.
  6. At least once in your lifetime, you have been the reason for a road accident.
  7. Heels are not your friends.
  8. And stairs too. You always miss one.
  9. Catching a train/bus at the last minute is almost like a death trap. Don’t. Do. It.
  10. Running is not meant for you. You got to accept that.
  11. Handling more than one thing is not your forte.
  12. Wires. Period. Worst. Thing. Ever.
  13. You can lose everything, including a human.
  14. You don’t understand how viral funny videos about people falling down are actually funny, because it fucking hurts.
  15. You’ll never understand how clumsy girls onscreen are adorable because in real life no one finds clumsiness adorable. Yeah, looking straight at you Zooey Deschanel.
Anyway, its fun though. Your life is like a rollercoaster.
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Sexist things people say to women.

I’m a very very privileged woman. I had parents who treated my brother and me equally, I had all the freedom in the world. I had the right to an education that I want, the career that I want. I am privileged enough to get to work and be an independent woman. Did you notice how being treated equally to my sibling, having freedom and liberty, the right to education and career I have to term as a privilege? When all of these are just fundamental rights for being a human on this planet? Yeah, welcome to my world!

Well, I was lucky enough I had those rights, which not all women in our society have. Even though I had almost everything really easily accessible to me I still face some subtle sexism on an everyday basis. Yeah, a woman, in 21st century, living in one of the most popular metropolitan city in the world, around well-educated people, has to still deal with this, can you believe it? Even I cannot at times. So, here they are:

  • There are many men, who are wonderful! They understand and are always there for your support but then there are also guys who say things like this:
    1. “We also go through shit, why we don’t have a special Men’s day”: At least one guy says this to me on every Women’s day. Dude, there is an International Men’s day. You’re just not woke enough to know this.
    2. “You’d look better if you smile”: Just tell me one thing how many times you have asked random men on the internet to smile so that they look good? And, you know, I am not here on this earth to only look good. If you want me to smile, probably, be nice to me.
    3. “You’re different from other girls”: What’s that supposed to mean? What do you think all the girls are like? All girls are different man. Don’t stereotype them.
    4. “Woah! calm down. Are you on your periods”: Okay, so the only reason I can be sad, angry, irritable, frustrated is that I am on my periods? Nice! Did you ever think it can also be because I have to deal with guys like you?
    5. “I don’t understand if you’re single why we can’t date”: Because I am not fucking interested. This is everything that’s wrong with our society today, so many guys can’t take no for an answer.
  • Women say sexist things all the time to their fellow girls, and they don’t even realize it:
    1. “When I was your age, I was married with kids”: Sorry, you had to go through that hell in such a young age. I’m going to wait.
    2. “How are you going to find a man if you are so overqualified?”: So, everything I do from the day I am born, how much I weigh, how tall I am, my skin complexion, how domestic and adjustable I am, how less career-oriented I am, my every damn decision about my life is going to determine what kind of a guy I am going to find, because that’s what I am supposed to live for.
    3. “You should get married, this is the right age. Your biological clock is ticking”: I am not sure if I want kids.
    4. “What’s the use of being a woman if you don’t want children”: Thanks, for reminding me. Apparently, nobody lets me forget that.
    5. “You earn how much? You should take a break. Just marry a rich man”: I want to be that rich man.

Well, there are many more, but enough for today. I should probably go and celebrate my special day as I have to get back to these kinds of people tomorrow again.

Happy Women’s Day! 🙂

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