Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Book Review #85 : The Wise Man Said

Publisher: Books That Inspire (2017) 
Language: English 
Genre: Self Improvement
ISBN-10: 8193391209 
ISBN-13: 978-8193391204

SYNOPSIS - Sammy is an 80 year old billionaire, who finds himself at the peak of his success built on a mountain of sacrifices. He decides to participate in a life he missed to live. Eleven months in a year he leaves behind his identity and money and allows his curiosity and his willingness to experience anything—death even, to take him on life changing adventures and experiences across the world. Loaded with wisdom, surprise, humor and an eagerness to embrace life, The Wise Man Said is a collection of twelve such adventures of Sammy, where his journey becomes his greatest achievement—a life well lived. 

Few days back, Priya Kumar’s team approached me for a review of this book. And having read her “The Calling”, I immediately agreed to review this one too! Priya is known to send her books for review so thoughtfully always along with cute goodies and merchandise (check the review of “The Calling” and what she sent in last time here); this time she sent a cute and a meaningful poster along with the book that has gone up on the green board of my room.

The Book Jacket : The cover is so beautiful and magical. By seeing the cover you will get an idea that this book is going to take you on an adventure. Reading Priya’s books is equal to traveling to another world which we never thought of. Her creativity ..her just another level. 

My Review : This is a lovely book with great insights. Priya’s writing style is so positive and uplifting, it always leaves me with good vibes and smiling ear to ear. Priya says what she wants to say in a very clear & interesting way. Like her last book, “The Calling”, even this one totally resonated with me. She is someone who goes the extra mile, inspires you. 

The book is about the 80 year old Sammy who travels around the world with no money and no identity. The author takes you to 12 different rare locations around the world and through the journey of Sammy's self realization. The author has chosen such beautiful, amazing , mysterious, magical places and she describes them ever so beautifully. He just goes to places, meets people and gathers experiences about life. He just takes the path as an ordinary being despite his riches. All through his journey, the Wise Man survives on the exchange…exchange of goodness, humanity and wisdom. 

Some of the stories of old man are simply WOW. They are constructed so beautifully that, they have the ability to surprise you at every phase. The story touches the heart in all the right places & teaches, what needs to be taught. 

The key notes/ synopsis at the end of each chapter is a very good practice by the author and summarizes your takeaway from the read. Actually, this book is worth reading a multiple times. Every time you read it, you get a different perspective and gives you some precious lessons throughout the journey of uncertainty that life is. This book will question your belief system. Each and every chapter has a new adventure waiting for you. 

VERDICT: Priya Kumar has brilliantly aligned the past, present, and future with life, underlining the importance of living in present. She conveys the message through the journey of The Wise Man that material possessions never bring you fulfillment in life but values do! 

An excellent read. A must for travel lovers! My advise is don't read the entire book in one go. Read it chapter by chapter each week and take time to reflect on it. You need to soak in the goodness of this book. 

Rating – 5/5

Saturday, 1 July 2017

Letter To My 21 Year Old Self

Dear Me!

Ah, you will be turning 26 this November! Although it isn't quite a lot of time, since 21, but you were a different person, 4 years ago, mentally at-least. I wanted to write a letter to you; a letter full of truth, confusion and hope - raw and authentic and not a rosy one. This is you from the future, sailing in to drop a few bombs of knowledge on that you will wish you knew back then. This is what I could have written to that girl I was, and to any other girl who is feeling overwhelmed by life as a young woman growing up in today’s world.

In these 4 years, I’ve seen you fall into the deepest of lowest and I’ve also witnessed your rise, your strength, your glory.  At times you have impressed me, you have really left me speechless by your boldness, your efficiency. At other times, I have wept for you. I have bled for you. I have felt for you. I have wanted to move mountains and slay dragons just to console you & take away your pain. You have had moments of unspeakable fear, of crippling anxiety. There have been times when you stopped believing, when your heart - blessings to it - was shattered by life circumstances, put back together only to be walked on again and again by emotional conmen. You have been through it; some things no one even knows. 

You just turned 21 - milestone! Woot, woot! Feels like a woman, no? Just got done with B.E, with what-to-do next lying ahead, life still feels good as you finished what you didn't want to take up! Four years went by, didn't they? 

And this isn't going to be the most flowery representation of what lies ahead of you. Life is about to churn you up. And it still does to me! But you ought to stay calm, as you cannot do anything better.

You will finish your Masters in the next two years, with wonderful opportunities coming your way. And then as you look back, at the journey from wanting-to-become a doctor to a professor, you would still be content with life. And you know what? Your students will adore you to bits!

Disappointments from people are going to be the best thing that would've happened to you because you're going to engross yourself in work and would try to do your best to be the best. Make yourself a priority, in this phase.

You don't even know what a pure soul you're because you won't treat anyone badly. From a waiter to a beggar, to a taxi driver you'll love and respect everyone equally because you know the value of being loved unconditionally without any labels. 

You'll have everything you want and some days you'll still feel bad but that's just the part of life. Don't over think it.

Don’t be afraid to rest sometimes. On the days where you are exhausted and just feel like you can’t keep going, give yourself a break. Self care isn’t selfish, and as life progresses you will need it even more. Take time to do the things you love because they’re just as important as “work.”

If you feel alone at times, talk to your mom she'll do anything to keep you happy, trust me she's going to be your biggest supporter. She is your best friend and wants only the good for you, in fact the best. Listen to her advice.

Develop the mindset that the creator does not make any mistakes. Everything is going to happen as planned. Let go, master that art. You will suck at it. But try to let go and not cling on to what you are losing. Let shit go.

Read more! You have begun writing your book, please write, write, write more, because 4 years down, I can still see it unfinished. Now is all the time you have!

Btw, you will soon have blogs and even a YouTube channel. Cool things will be happening. You will get so many books to review, from authors. You will have a huge bookshelf adorning your room! Your blog will lead you to meet Bollywood Biggies for a day and even clicking pictures with them! You will get to attend Lakme Fashion Week complementary passes for three continuous years and so many other blogger events! You will get to see Rekha Bharadwaj and Kumar Sanu's live performances! 

Value Mama Papa, spend more time, and talk more with them, rather than being busy in your phone always. You will be blessed to have casual trips with family and friends often. You have the best parents who never leave you with empty pockets and sad moods.

Pray often. Go to the gym, don't neglect fitness.

You will have a cute baby girl in your neighbour when you shift houses and she will be responsible for almost turning your sadness to positivity, on tough days!

You will never truly know the beauty of what lies ahead, should you have chosen to give up. Don't give up on things that will take more time to come to you.

I know inside you’re not feeling so glamorous. In a city full of chic, slim women you feel like you stick out like a little fat sore thumb. You feel ugly and you are conscious of the fact that almost everyone around has had a boyfriend, and you never had a guy telling you ever that he liked you. You are probably thinking you have some problem going on. But wait... a little sneak peek into the future, hardly any of the girls you saw with boyfriends are with their boyfriends now, even the ones you found so cute together and saw them as "goals".

I know it feels like a boy will never fancy you and you’ll often try to validate yourself. Your friends will all be in relationships and you’ll feel left behind. 

Yet, never feel sorry for yourself. Which brings me to, please don’t stress about not having everything figured out. The truth is you never will, but you will get better at accepting it in time.

I know it doesn’t seem like it, but you have so much more privilege than you have any clue about. Practice gratitude every damn day. Count your blessings rather than misfortunes. Don't surround yourself in negative energy, be less angry.

Don't regret something after it meets a bad end, because at one point, it will be dearest to you and you would want it badly at a point.

As the world gets bigger to you, you will realize how small you are within it and how little anything you do really matters. You are an imperceptible grain of sand in millennia and millennia in a universe greater than anyone can imagine. So stop worrying so much that you’ll make a mistake, because it’s not as big of a deal as you think. Cherish your mistakes and learn from them.

Try choosing happiness often. Choose your battles carefully.

The greatest skills you will acquire over the next 4 years are recognizing the power of honesty, the importance of compassion, and the incredible skill of patience. To be honest, that last one is still something you struggle with!

You’re going to spend a lot of time alone, which right now probably sounds terrible, bleaky, but it will be exactly what you need.

You will face a lot of rejections related to marriage, and job - based on religion, some due to lack of your own preparation, some you will lose to luck. But never give up. Improve yourself every day.

As I can see, you are almost always fighting to get things that are your rights. I want you to take things easy and learn to let go of things that are beyond your control. Because that way you have lost things and people. Actually, they didn't belong to you in the first place. Since what is given to you with full heart, you don't have to yearn or fight for it. What is yours, stays. Remember this. Don't force connections. Let the vibes come naturally.

Never allow yourself to become any man's option. Wait till you have someone who has his life inside you, and is ready to do what it takes when THE TIME comes. 

Never hurry to fall for someone, by getting in the worldly traps of "You have crossed the age, get married", or a man saying sweet things. Take your time! Finding someone to love you and be your life partner is not and never will be the answer. There’s nobody coming to save you. You have to save yourself.

Don't depend on others often. Be on your own. Shop alone, eat alone. Learn this. Love yourself enough to know how well you deserve to be loved by someone. Enjoy your company before you share your time with somebody else.

Memories... they are easy to make. Please be sure who you choose to make them with, because they are almost impossible to erase in time.

There will be times you will ask yourself ’why me?’ The answer to that is simply, ‘why not you?’ Every fucked up thing that has happened to you has made you me. Know that it’s all going to happen the way it’s supposed to happen, just as the Universe intends. I am far from perfect but I know based on everything that will happen to you, I am now enriched with resilience, empathy and worldliness. Accept your journey as it is.

You will become the girl you always have been and you will let her shine through. I ignite these luminous beacons of advice not so much to help guide you but rather reassure you that everything is going to be ok.

I am so proud of you! XOXO. Focus on joy, and chase your dreams… I’ll be watching, and I’ll be checking in. Go get ’em.

Love Always,