Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Peace vs. Restlessness? Which bodes better?

Been thinking a lot about existential aspects lately, been ruminating quietly and hopefully, deeply on the issue. I tend to kind of hunker down and think and self-argue my way through instead of putting fingers to keyboard right away, unlike a very good friend of mine , who seeks and finds peace in writing.
Many a time a random comment or a slightly longer conversation does send me off on a tangent and gets me into a reflective state; recently, there was one such comment. A colleague who said he was trying to understand what made me tick asked if I was satisfied with what I did and did I not feel restless, given that I was more or less doing the same thing over a time.

That made me think. And this is what I came up with.

A degree of self-satisfaction, a sense of peace that what you are currently doing, the task that you are executing is what you were meant to do, needs to be there.

This sense of peace, of rightness, as it were, is what enables me to give my very best to the task in hand, so much so, that I strive to excel at what it is that I am doing. This results in me going to the Nth limit, straining and expanding my visible or current boundaries for the task in hand and learning whether I can push these limits further, thereby expanding my horizons first; then helping others' expand theirs. Of course, given that it is a very practical world, at least the openly visible professional part of it, this dedication, this drive to be the best leads to: a) ultimate personal-professional satisfaction; b) being acknowledged as the best, that there is, at least within your defined professional space (could be limited to the company, could be industry-wide).

And then, I can release that restless spirit that is always present, bring it to the surface, allow it to have its head and seek newer pastures as it were, fresher, more complicated arenas, which will obviously need the focus of all my energies to experience, to understand, to conquer a new domain. It is this restlessness to learn, to explore, to gain new knowledge, to master it that pushes me to expand myself, both professionally and personally.

Having planted my flag on various fields, I move on to the next one. Does this make me a varied specialist or a generalist, I don't know. What I do know is that this allows me to be the best that I can be, to give to my most external limit, to push myself beyond.

7 comments:

Nimmy said...

A friend of mine used to tell me that there are millions of ways in which we can lead our lives. There are infinite resources that God has provided us with in order to survive. The human mind is capable of finding a way out of any situation and can confidently choose what it wants to do without worrying about consequences as long as it is ethical and in tune with one's conscience. So, I can relate to what you're saying here. Just keep flowing like another friend told me just a day ago! :-)

Sanjeev Sarma said...

If what you're doing is what you really love doing, and you want to keep doing it, is a justification required?

There seems to be still a strain of doubt in you about whether what you're doing is what you want to be really doing, and writing is probably a way of reassurance.

I recommend you stay restless. :) Not just vertically, but horizontally too ... Therein lies the best (surely not the easiest) path to self development

KayKap said...

@Sanjeev
"writing is probably a way of reassurance"
I am sorry, I disagree; I don't seek reassurance by writing. And there is no justification given above. Neither do I doubt myself, not on these aspects at least.
I write to improve the clarity of my thoughts, for when put down in black & white they enable me to probe further!
And, neither did you get the "restless' part of it; vertical/horizontal do not apply here.

Mushtaq said...

Life is a continuum. So is everything that's connected with it. To keep it interesting quite some effort is needed. Here's my attempt to connect the dots.

To feel happy and content something worthy has to be achieved, not just in the professional sphere but also in general life as well. Liken it to the analogy of two wheels of a cart. Lack of self-content and happiness in one is likely to pin you down no matter how well you do in the other. A good day at both work and home is better than either of them alone.

Speaking of professional life, I think satisfaction is linked to a sense of achievement as much as to recognition at work. By creating value that equally benefits both the organization we serve and individuals who we work with, one can score well on both counts. Now, how to create value that benefits all concerned? So far my understanding goes, value creation depends on expertise in deploying certain capabilities, and ability to expand and grow such capabilities over time. This can be achieved by learning, acquiring, and practicing vertical knowledge, and at the same time gracefully expanding knowledge horizons horizontally as well. Well rounded capabilities thus developed and translated to value makes one an expert and a star in the organization. If effect, acquiring knowledge, applying at work to develop capabilities, becoming expert at it, and finally, successfully transferring it to others is a great way to accomplish a sense of achievement, recognition and satisfaction.

I believe what is not recognized, does not exist enough. How others perceive us matters more than self-perception.

KayKap said...

@Mushtaq
As always, your inputs are enlightening and they prompt me to go deeper into arenas.
But that would then become the subject of a new post altogether, but you have sown the seeds, a glimmer is perceived in the distance and one day, not too far off in the future shall explore the great continuum, as it were.
For now, a million thankees.

@nimmy, what can I say except you do grasp where I am coming from and whither I would possibly head. Thankees, buddy!

Incessant Inker said...

Just as the sea looks calm from a distance but one needs to step into its waters to know of its currents (and undercurrents), so does your restlessness not announce itself to the world while laboring at what you need to channelize it towards.

Nevertheless, human nature is to struggle against confines to sameness. The insatiable thirst to be more than who we are makes us restless, a catalyst to our refinement.

Those that seem at rest are restless internally whereas others have yet to master the internal struggles while they struggle outwards with more physical quests.

Only the cold ones lie restless, everyone else moves from one state to another...

Su said...

Love it as always Kay :)