Until I Turned 35, I Was Not Prepared For The 4 Lessons Life Taught Me!

As a naive young woman, my definition of the perfect life was completely different. However, life taught me 4 important lessons!

As a naive young woman, my definition of the perfect life was completely different. However, life taught me 4 important lessons!

If you asked me five years ago what I thought about my life when I was on the brink of 30, my rose coloured ambitious soul would have answered. And I would’ve told you that I see myself driving a Tesla to my creative writing job at a top consultancy filled with women. I’d have told you that I would have tons of like-minded friends to spend my lunch hours at the nearest Starbucks.

However, little did my mind small town mind conjure that when it comes to reality, life is completely different. Now, I’m not saying that my life has been a complete nightmare and I am going to narrate the travesties I have faced thus far. But I sure know that there’s something definitely missing. As I sit here trying to understand what’s missing, I have realised a few things.

Expectations are your enemy

It’s inherent in our culture to make women get accustomed to the dull and the mundane in the name of safety and protection. So in our minds, we make a heap of expectations that when we finally have our adventure, it will be nothing less than something out of a movie!

That the exciting big city life which we thought would look like a day in the lives of the girls from Sex And The City, is far from the truth.

For me, when it finally happened when I got married and came to Mumbai. My eyes were overflowing with dreams of a balanced and gorgeous life filled with soulmates for friends, a fulfilling job, glamorous days and nights. But it was an enormous let down for me when the reality wasn’t even near it.

Life is nothing like movies and while we should not become a complete cynic, but we should never lose touch with reality. To avoid being disillusioned and bitter at a later stage in life, it’s better if we keep a very realistic check on our expectations.

You won’t always be as put together as the media portrays women to be. However, you will definitely have a good time amidst all the hardships that life throws at you when you have attained a certain grown-up age.

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The comfort zone is toxic

A lot of women in this country suffer the consequences of being in the comfort zone for too long. Most of us are made to stay inside a comfortable cocoon of ‘this is good, this is bad.’

When we finally get to venture out on our own, we don’t know how to judge what is good or bad for ourselves. Then, we either listen to what others tell us to do or get into peer pressure.

Say, the decision of having kids after marriage. Women are moulded so ardently into a particular mindset of what is good and bad that even a personal decision of having kids becomes a community activity. This can be easily manipulated by peers and family members.

So, escape the comfort zone right from the start. Don’t be scared to be your own person and make your own assessment about things. Be respectful yet, have the power in yourself to speak your mind.

Women need to be more and more supportive of each other

No matter how perfect your partner is, being able to share your problems with your own kind does help. What helps, even more, is being understood in return. But somewhere somehow, due to the harsh mental shaping women face all our lives, it renders us somewhat incapable to listen and be more supportive.

Today, women often are so engrossed in their own hardships, that there can be no space for compassion and friendships without a preoccupied mind. A mind like this is only half capable of forming a genuine friendship and having true understanding.

Now, this makes me wonder, why can’t we as women, be more attentive and supportive of our own kind? Why not shed our inhibitions and come together and make our sisters in the same boat turn into a more powerful and compassionate community?

So, I urge all women, that the next time a friend, sister or peer comes to you with a problem, be more open and listen to her. Maybe she just wants someone to talk to. And maybe your precious two minutes of attention will help her heal from something that has been holding her back.

Loneliness is unavoidable

One of the most important parts of being an adult is that we are never taught to enjoy our own company. Growing up we have such a measly amount of personal space in our homes, as an adult when and if we do get our space, we don’t know how to utilise it. Thus, leading us to start feeling lonely, bitter and helpless.

To avoid this tricky situation, we should form habits that make us more aware of what we like and dislike. We should be more in touch with our inner selves, so we are more calm and composed when we are by ourselves, instead of feeling clueless and lonely.

Reading, meditating or even simply enjoying a movie can be a big step towards getting rid of that unwarranted loneliness. But knowing your self-worth and that being lonely sometimes is completely fine is of primary importance.

Remember, you’ve got this!

You got this, and remember nothing is more powerful than your mind. Tell yourself that loneliness is not scary. In fact, it is your time to shine and to get to know who you really are.

The feeling that something inside you is missing and that life sucks as you grow older is a very common one. Unfortunately, the dilemma of coming to age is imminent. However, what is hidden behind all this, is the fact that once you gain the true knowledge of how strong your mind is, you can fight this battle with unnecessary expectations. You can start taking each day as it comes.

At the end of the day, no illusion of reality is more important than the happiness you can feel in your real life. Rather than concentrating on, ‘what could have been,’ why not concentrate on ‘how can I make things better now?’

What do you think?

Picture credits: Still from Marathi movie Bucket List

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