What happens when 50 strangers from various cities gather to travel to a place unexplored? Fun, discovery and friendship build along with stories to be shared for years. A random tag on Facebook made me register for an online contest; always skeptical about winning these contests, I wrote the answers and within 10 days, I received an email after which I was packing my bags for a three day trip to Barmer in Rajasthan. [Read more…] about Barmer: The Underrated World of Heritage & Art
24 hours in a day yet so less time. While the 9 to 5 job takes most of our time, other responsibilities at home, towards friends, boss, partner, kids, siblings and now a major part- social life takes away the rest, and we find ourselves trapped in the mundane routine that soaks up our energy; making us dull.
We expect for the euphoria to enter into our world and bring us back the happiness, the real meaning of which has become quite delusional. Little do we know that all it takes are the simple gestures and moments that can bring back ‘Life’ in our daily routine and cause Happiness which we are so adamantly trying to find it outside of us.
Here are 20 simple ways that, no matter what, will bring true happiness.
Always TRY to Help a Friend in Need: Well, you can always try, isn’t it? I get it. We all have our busy lives, responsibilities that we cannot run away from but if the time comes and you find a friend (it needn’t be a close one only) who would appreciate a help, then go ahead. Be the superman/superwoman and happiness won’t be a far off dream.
Be BRAVE and it’s Completely Okay to be Afraid at Times: You can always wear a mask of courage out in the open but deep inside you know you are shitting your pants. And that is OKAY. Lately, a lot of pressure is being put on by the society and at times, our loved ones expect us to keep a grit during a dire situation but it’s difficult. Once you come to terms of accepting that you can be afraid, you may find yourself fighting the problem with much more strength than before.
Study Hard & Read More: No, it needn’t be textbooks only. There are a million books, journals and articles that are being published and the world is an ocean of knowledge which is pouring from every corner of the world. READ, READ and Read more. Inculcate this habit in yourself on a daily basis and inspire others as well to read books. Research beyond what you are being told by your teachers, professors or the society and you will gain depth on a subject and that my friend, is how you will go places.
Give Lots of Hugs: Fun Fact- Hugging someone triggers the brain to release ‘dopamine’ which is a feel-good hormone. Fun Fact #2- Hugging is a form of communication because it can say things which you don’t have the words for. Let’s get this straight and to the point- we all love to be hugged, don’t we? And if giving someone a bear hug would make someone happy, imagine adding that ritual regularly can add happiness in your daily life.
Laugh Often: Stop being so uptight and straight face. Yes, you need to let yourself loose and laugh often, even on silly things. That being said, keep the child in you alive and you will find yourself singing in the rain, dancing on the street, watching cartoons on YouTube, and playing Ludo with kids.
Don’t Be Overly Concerned with your Weight. It’s Just a Number: Life is too short to stress over numbers- age, weight on the scale, stock exchange and bills. Grab that last bite of the cheese cake and be happy! We all are going to die anyway (#TRUTH) so why bother over a few calories gained over the holidays? Am I right or am I right?
TRY to See the Glass Half Full: One side of the bus window has a scenic view and the other side shows giant rocks. Which side would you choose? Every day, life will put you in a situation where you will have to choose the seat so why not take the window seat and enjoy the view?
Meet New People Even if They Look Different to You: One of the major reasons of people not being happy is the unacceptability of the self by the society that we live in. They would always judge you for the clothes that you wear, company that you keep, even vehicle that you drive. So why not start accepting the people who may not appear similar to you and cause the ripple effect. Believe me, acceptance by the self and by others will add happiness in your daily life.
Remain Calm Even if it Seems Hopeless: It is difficult, I agree. Keeping calm when the world is behind while you try to make things work is an audacious task but you’ve got to do it. Once, you win over this; that you can do through meditation, music therapy, water therapy, indulging in a hobby as a means of distraction, you can always find yourself in a happy place.
Take Naps & Rejuvenate: There’s a reason why they say that an adult needs 6-8 hours of daily sleep for better body functioning. Also, 10-20 minutes of power naps quickly boost your alertness and is adequate for getting back to work in a pinch. According to Dr. Mednick, a 60-minute nap may do more good for cognitive memory processing and help you remember facts, faces and people. Well, go and come back after that power nap now.
Be Weird Whenever You have the Chance: Go Weird! Yes, if you are being labeled as weird and it has come to the point that you have found your tribe, then rejoice! Be weird, be random, be yourself and if being weird means being happy than miserable then why not?
Try to Have a Little Fun, Each Day: You very well know what makes you happy, right? As we grow up, so much of our time is spent on the worldly chores that we have little or no time left to really do the things that we want to do. Even if you have major plans made out for the rest of your life, take a breather every now and then and add the element of fun in your daily life. It could be anything from taking a brisk walk, painting, singing in the shower pretending to be a rockstar, gardening, watching stand up comedy shows to playing with the pet dog, dancing, writing and anything that switches you to the world of your own. Just do it!
Say ‘I Love You’ Often: When was the last time you said the three magical words to your parents, siblings and your friends? You do love them, right? So say it. While wishing good morning, good day or ending the day with a call, say ‘I love you’ to them and you will see happiness reflecting back in your life in one way or the other. Wish to see the power of love? Start saying it more often to people who mean to you.
Forgive & Forget: Neither is easy but if applied rigorously in your daily life, they will work magically in the way you perceive situations and tackle with people. Remember, forgiving and forgetting a few people, situations and memories are going to serve you tremendously good.
Express Yourself: There is an innate need for us to share our feeling and emotions to the people around us so as to communicate how we are truly feeling and also help others to respond to our needs. It is not necessary that others will react the way you want them to but with time, you will notice that conveying the feelings will help you get closer to the ones that you share the special bond with and they will know you better.
Dress Up: You have been waiting for the perfect date to take place for you to wear that red dress that you had shopped ages ago or the new shes that are covered in dust because you are finding one good reason to wear them. Stop waiting, start doing. Dress up and walk out on the street as if you own the city and be confident in whatever you choose to wear.
Stop Seeking Validation: The social media is a jungle where one can get lost if one doesn’t have the road map to come out from. We advertise our feelings, the best moments and flaunt our relationship status on almost all social media platforms but that should not be the way for you to seek attention or the likes and comments shouldn’t be a parameter for you to define your personality. Stop seeking validation from people who don’t even know you on a personal basis. Be true to yourself, comfy in your skin and few likes or no comments would remain to be an algorithm problem that you care not to solve.
Exercise: You wanna be healthy, wealthy, sexy so just EXERCISE! Half an hour in a day is enough on a daily basis to keep your heart healthy, mind strong and get a glowing skin. Get that ass off the couch and go out of your house. You will thank me or the scientists (who studied this life mantra for years for you) later.
Self Affirmations: Wake up, wash yourself clean and while you are doing it, look at yourself in the mirror and talk positive words every day. Make this as your habit and you will see a drastic change in your behavior. These little words of confidence boosting and uplifting moral can add happiness in your daily life.
Say ‘Thank You’: Little gestures go a long way. A simple gesture of gratitude by saying ‘Thank You’ to someone who has offered you a seat, shifted for the space, handed you the coffee or the menu, brought to you the food, given you the directions or simply made your day better. Having that sense of gratitude and passing it on to the people, who have in their own special ways done something for you will reap you the benefits you can not even imagine. After all, karma and good intentions do work in the universe and ‘thank you’ has its own happy effect on the one who received and the one who said.
There can be a million other ways to keep yourself happy and if done right, can add happiness in your daily life. So, what are you waiting for? Start applying these points from today onward and you will be freed from the burden of finding happiness through others.
The House of Mirrors is a place of illusions; the one that skews your image and you see yourself in ways that are far away from reality. Stout face, enlarged body, stick thin figure and midget short height is many of the illusions that you see in the mirror and laugh at yourself finishing the laughing riot in front of a simple mirror to get an overview of how you really are. You walk out of the enclosed room, back into the real world and you haven’t stopped laughing since on others for whom large bodies, skinny figures are in fact, the reality that they deal with every day. No mirrors yet distorted reflections of how you perceive them. [Read more…] about Dear Friends & Strangers, STOP Fat Shaming
We always wonder about what it takes to make a difference in the world or to bring a change in the society that we live in. A scientific discovery, a technological invention, a fashion trend, an NGO, a liberal reform or a rally; these are a few things that we often think of but for Bhuvnesh, it was simply planting a seed of thought; literally! [Read more…] about Bhuvnesh Ojha: Changing the World One Tree at a Time
That’s the thing about ordinary; it compels you to defy the humdrum and witness what lies beyond. It usually is a tedious task but somebody has got to do it, isn’t it? For instance, running a café in Udaipur can be a precarious business as with time, this city has seen multiple concept cafes mushrooming in every corner. How to keep up? By innovating and evolving and in this case, Mic & Munch raised the bar high and there’s no complaint about it. [Read more…] about Mic & Munch Café: For the Love of Food & Music
The hill range covered in lush greens, alluring beauty of the lakes, palaces that tell history, and streets that impose culture, art and beauty all around is found in the romantic city Udaipur, situated in Rajasthan. Renowned as one of the most romantic places in the world, The City of Lakes Udaipur is about festivities, old palaces and havelis, grand celebrations, shopping, elegance and memories soaked in unparalleled beauty.
When in Udaipur, go beyond the touristy tour and explore the city as a traveller, admire the architecture, learn about the history, practice art, make connections with the local and go back with an enthralling experience. [Read more…] about The Top ‘Non-Touristy’ Things To Do in Udaipur
Emotions need to be expressed and creativity takes courage. Art is the only way to unveil what lies inside of us; having multiple interpretations and making the world a little better.
Long before what the present day art is; drawings, symbols, paintings, street theatre and folk music were the epitome of expressions. War, battles, social movement, agitation, love, cruelty, peace, harmony, dogmas, and politics etc. have been open to interpretations for the common people through art in any form suitable. Just because sometimes, we don’t understand it, doesn’t make it less imperative.
Art has a monumental impact on the society and is an undaunted force of change. With this notion, young art lovers Surya Siras and Vaidika Wadhera decided to invite city’s poets, notable speakers, musicians, storytellers and comedian to share their expressions in an open mic session.
At Mic & Munch, city’s conceptual café which promotes music, storytelling, and art combined with amiable ambience and delicious food opened its gate for all to see the varied definitions of art. Wikipedia defines ‘Open Mic’ as an event that is commonly held at venues with or without a stage where newer or emerging artists are given an opportunity to practice and improve, with a view to getting paid work in the future. Also, it is an event where anyone can sign up to perform.
The first artist to perform at the open mic was a 19-year-old storyteller Pragya Jain who put her emotions in words immaculately and connected to the audience on a deep level. She was followed by Unnati Gupta, a poetess who took the centre stage. Surya filled the in between gaps with his funny anecdotes, love poems and tragic short stories that instilled a tornado of emotions.
To shake up the mood, a 19-year-old chef with a passion for music, Vaidika Wadhera, performed Bollywood as well as English songs on guitar and ukulele including two special songs ‘Nahi Saamne’ and ‘Rubaroo’ as a tribute to maestro AR Rahman.
After the groovy tunes, I set my foot on the stage and while I had thought of reciting few poems, I instead, decided to open up about mental health, anxiety, and depression. Amid silent audience and peering eyes, I spoke about the prevalent mental health issue and to my wonder, I found people who have had or are going through the same issue. After a serious topic, poetry was recited by Rachit Boliya who took the breath away with haikus and love notes.
To give a comic relief, upcoming stand-up comedian of the city, Rohit mimicked Bollywood actors and gave all a hearty laugh. With time, all of the seats, bean bags, and even the floor was occupied by audience members and Surya Siras told a tragic love story (although he said it was fiction, it was kind of ambivalent when he said that every story is somehow inspired by real life) that baffled people as to whether to sigh with sadness or feel mushy for it had a strong tinge of love in it.
City’s renowned architect, entrepreneur and a mother of two, Priyanka Arjun took the stage as a motivational speaker and talked about her like, before and after marriage, with an architect and interior design company in her name and two loving kids taking the most of her daily time. She was an inspiration to all women who aspire to have a family while focusing on their career and her insights impelled many to pursue their dreams.
Many of the people present in the open mic session were newcomers or had been on the stage for a couple of times. But the next artist who performed was Tripti Vyas known as Tappu, who is an RJ, songwriter, and singer. She, with her guitar strapped on her shoulders, performed an original composition and an old Bollywood song from the ’60s. After she performed a few songs, Tappu was accompanied by Spanish musician Richard, who with trombone and metal flute jazzed up the good vibes.
For what it’s worth, more artists including Harshit Sidhwani (musician), Dhruvank Charan (musician) and Amulya performed over the course of the evening. There were music, poetry, stories, comedy, speech and great food that made the evening worth remembering. Special thanks to Surya and Vaidika for bringing all forms of artwork together, and it was fabulous!