My brother has always called me the selfish one, always thinking of my needs and my happiness. I never liked it when he said it all those times, because, who wants to be known as selfish? But now, looking back to times I didn't share my toys or food or even my room, I think, nothing's changed! Even in my relationships I have never been the over loving or over pampering girlfriend. I was the 'Out-of-sight-out-of-mind' kind of girl. I have and always put my needs and interests first and I'd never let anyone get the better of me. But now, I think I need to be the same way when it comes to my career as well. For some reason I have never looked at money as being the ultimate objective in life. It was somehow ingrained in me to never work for money, but work because you love what you do. Dad always says, money will come and go, but you, your values, your integrity, your relationship with people, the way you live your life will always be with you. And I believe and follow that as much as I can. My first job was working for Karnataka Tourism, under the Golden Chariot right after my degree from Christ University, Bangalore. Being my first job, I learnt so much from my colleagues, my boss, everyone was so passionate about the train, the journey, the people. I was so inspired after my stint that I decided to do my masters in Tourism from the same University. Although the course itself was a bit of a let down, those two years were unforgettable. What I'm trying to say here is, the two jobs I had after that (both in the travel industry) were so robotic and mundane. There was no passion, excitement, it was boring, uninspiring with zero motivation that it was hard to continue after a year or so at each of them. Especially the last job I held two years back, I was super stressed all the time, newly married, I was already snapping at my husband, getting back late from work, I absolutely hated it. After I resigned, I tried my hand at YouTube, blogging, and also applying at the 'Teach for India' organisation.
But as fate would have it, life had other plans in store for me. I soon felt something wasn't right in my body. I noticed things about myself that just weren't right and it scared me. Sad fact, my family thought I was just lazy, and that I needed to loose weight and start working again. My husband enrolled me to an aerobics class, which I knew I just couldn't do. I couldn't cross to the other side of the road without feeling like I ran for a 100mt race. After many blood tests, we found out that I had Chronic Kidney Disease. 'Thank god!' I thought. Because I knew something was wrong and I was sick of everyone telling me otherwise. Fun fact, my husband went back to the aerobic place to get his money back. They wouldn't give it. :)
Fast forward to my surgery, and me still trying to accept what happened to me and why, I found myself spiraling into depression. My family told me to start working thinking that, that will take my mind off things, but I knew myself. It wasn't going to be that easy. Nevertheless I gave in and got a job with a family friend. That too dint turn out as expected. I couldn't focus, I found every project they gave me a mammoth task to do. I knew if I dint get out of it, my health (physical and mental) would be in jeopardy. I tried to stay afloat using my little knowledge of Psychology I had learnt during my degree, but that too was of no use. So I got help, I started seeing a therapist and after a month, I felt better. I had to tell everyone forcing me to get a job to calm down. I had to take care of myself first. I had to get selfish. Put me as my number one priority. Slowly, with the help of Yoga and my lessons from my therapist, I began to write. I also used Instagram as a platform to voice myself. Talk about things that matter to me, I wrote about what happened. No matter if it were good days or bad days, I would always post something. Soon many people wrote to me with positive messages and feedback about my pictures and my writing. I was on cloud 9! I soon found myself going online and learning things from tutorials, looking at people on Instagram and their pictures, learning from them. The angles and lighting, I was hooked. I bought my camera, and with it I began to see. I am at a happier place now, I know I cannot be pressurized into getting a job just for the sake of working and earning. I need to be happy. I need to do things that make me happy. Somehow investing in me, working on me, loving myself has always been the best for me. Who knew? :)
Anyone reading this, always, always remember, invest in yourself. Love yourself, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise.