Just Another Blog

Monday, July 21, 2008

Do I Want the Monk's Ferrari?

Ok, I know, as per my last blog, I was supposed to have learned a little more about the English royalty and stuff, but that zest has worn away, until I happen to find the Philippa Gregory novels.

Must admit, I've grown very fond of our new batch of India Authors, had a nice time reading a couple of books by Samit Basu, and later I came across a smart gentleman called Ravi Subramaniam.

I read his first book "If God was a Banker" within 3 hours, cover to cover. Really good book which represents life's triumphs and failures in a very realistic way. This really got me very excited about his next book "I Bought the Monk's Ferrari"

I was disappointed. Granted that its a basic, How to Achieve Your Dreams(in this book, your Ferrari) kind of books, which was nice, but got me to wonder, do I really dream for what I think I dream?

The author gives a great deal of importance, to honesty, integrity, hard work towards achieving your goal, which is really good, and which is the school of thought where I come from. Hard work always pays off, that's my motto too. He also gives some great tips for most of us who shy away from marketing ourselves, making ourselves known, which is where many people falter.

But then there was this point in the book, where he said that to own your Ferrari, there is no such thing as work-life balance. The author's point of view is that when you have a goal you forget everything else, like working late at nights, not spending time with your children, not having alternate interests, all for the goal of reaching the Ferrari.

I admit we all do this every once in a while, but even at such times, no matter how ambitious you are, don't you secretly yearn for the small things in life that give you more joy?
This is also fine for someone who is doing things with a certain passion, but just fame or success is not a convincing enough reason for sacrificing so many other things in life.

He also had a good take on physical fitness. How important it is for you to stay fit, he cited examples of people like Anil Ambani, who keeps himself fit enough to be able to run the Mumbai Marathon every year. Its kind of sad that I know very few people who have such a good fitness quotient. But here again I did not agree with the basic motivating factor behind keeping fit.

According to the author, those who don't keep themselves fit, may fall ill, and this gives the competitors an edge over them. Is this is the reason you want physical wellbeing? Come on, whatever happened to a comfortable old age, or boasting of a good stamina or any other such reasons. How can your career determine so many factors in your life?

He spoke about people who want a 5 day week are not the leaders in an organization, the leaders will not worry about all this. Its the followers who are always satisfied with what they have, who will crib and fight for such things. Employers enforce 5 day weeks, 8 hour workshifts for these followers, who form the majority, and need to be kept happy.
The leaders don't care, they are not the ones who will crib and whine for these things, all this doesn't even matter to them.
I beg to differ, I do want great things for my career as well. But what is the point of living like this? Maybe as a woman I have fewer choices, even if I want to,sometimes I can't be a "leader" as per the authors definition.
But what about the men, I'm sure even they are not just career-driven, everybody has something else that draws them away from work. I think everyone should have that. Otherwise you are just a burden on your wife and your family. You sacrifice their happiness, their right to spending time with you, sometimes your spouse's success, just so you can achieve your Ferrari? What is the point of that kind of a Ferrari?

After reading this book, I felt like, do all the people who I want to be like,need to live like this to achieve recognition in my eyes? I admire them, sometimes envy them, no doubt, but I also consider myself lucky, in a way liberated, that I am not tied down to life by these kind of desires.

Its my choice, but I am happy with no Ferrari.

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