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A heartfelt letter to a young niece by the author, about the really important things in life. Everything else will follow, if these things are taken care of.
You are the most special person you would ever meet in this world. The treasure which is inside you may get dusted or marred by experiences but do not let it affect you.
Ever seen silver ware when it gets oxidised in the air? Take a bit of toothpaste and lemon, to scrub it and make it new again. This is true for life as well. That occasional coating on you will never define you. Believe in that inner sheen you have. You are going to remain that forever. That is your core. Your professional and personal failures do not define you.
In your tough times, be wise to choose people who are that cleanser and toothpaste which help you shine back again. They may not be comforting all the time but hold on to them. They are your cleanser. Comfort can degrade you. It may convince you to live with that black coating forever. Please believe otherwise. Your core is still shining within those layers of black coating. Delve deeper and find it.
Feel that fluttering of the heart for the first man or woman you meet. The event is important not entirely because of that person, but for what you felt because of that person. Show gratitude to that person.
The centre of your universe is you, not that person. Let your respective universes overlap to some extent, and if it is meant to be, they may coincide completely. Enjoy the gradual process of falling in love and discovering yourself in the process. Live that moment without worrying about the future. Never believe your teachers when they teach you to give such importance to the future tense. In the process of deciphering future perfect, you may live present imperfect.
There will be moments of disagreements and misunderstandings. Talk it out always and like an equal. Have one reason ready always – on how the relationship nurtures you. If it does not, tell them it does not and bid a goodbye. Walk away as far as you can, as fast as you can.
Sometimes, the person you are head over heels in love with may tell you that it is time to move on. Respect their decision and learn to say thank-you for the beautiful moments you spent with them. Goodbyes are tough but memorable when done with a kiss and smile.
Talk to your best friend. Cry your heart out. Howl if that soothes you. Be vulnerable with people you feel close to. Hiding your emotions makes you a weak person hiding inside a shell.
If you have nobody to talk to, dance like nobody is watching, write as if your words are being heard by some supernatural power or read incessantly. Find what heals you and do it crazily. You will feel the metamorphosis. In hindsight, you would realize the strength in being vulnerable. That heartbreak came to reveal that shine of silverware again.
The best music to sooth your soul will be sparrows chirping early morning, the leaves of the mango tree dancing in the soothing breeze and the sound of river flowing. Once you experience this, your benchmark for beauty will be raised forever. You will not settle for anything lesser. When life gets too comfortable, run a mile or climb that god dammn mountain. That is what Jack Kerouac said and I have believed in.
Do not get into the trap of fulfilling your parents’ ambition. Think for yourself. If you are not sure what you love, keep searching, but don’t settle for less. Do what you love but do not be hungry for appreciation. Appreciation is always a by-product. To do the job you love is important but it is equally important to be financially independent.
Learn your livelihood from the fundamental skill-sets you have. Always save twenty five percent of what you earn. More importantly, choose the ecosystem you want to be in and surround yourself with people who are helping you evolve in each interaction.
If you take loan from your parents to study, years later return it to them; maybe book a nice vacation for them. Do not take what they spend on you for granted. There are no free lunches.
I have learnt this in thirty-two years of my life. I am sure I will improve with time. If you will disagree with what I say, we will have a discussion again. Let us keep the conversation going.
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Priya Tripathi identifies herself as a feminist, bibliophile, survivor and a runner. She believes her
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