You might have heard this proverb (or quote or thought or whatever you want to call it) many times, which goes something like – “Where there is a will, there is a way.” But, though this seems theoretically possible, I have not come across many examples in real life. Of course there are people like Albert Einstein, Issac Newton and a few others who have proven this particular fact, but they are only a handful, which, according to me, (and probably according to what I have recently learnt in mathematics – just joking :P) is enough to rule out this generalisation for the vast majority of people out there like you and me. But, what if we slightly modify the proverb (or whatever you called it earlier) to something like this – “Where there is a DEADLINE, there probably is a way!”. Practically, this one is a bit more appropriate. You will understand why I am saying this by the end of this post.

You know what, we are all very very selfish people. Yes, you are selfish, and even me too. And, being selfish is not at all bad. In fact, I say that it’s the best thing for every single one of us. Again, if you understand the proper meaning of selfish, it is almost the same as “hungry”, for whatever, be it knowledge, be it appreciation, be it satisfaction, whatever. So now, if I say “Yes, I am very selfish for knowledge and self-satisfaction, you know. I try to learn whatever interests me in any way I can and try to do things as nicely as I can because I feel very happy and content with myself if something which I have worked on turns out well.”, you will most definitely think that I am mad. That I am a crazy and a mentally retarded person and probably I don’t belong on this planet. But, it won’t be wrong if I say that at the same time you will most certainly also ‘envy’ me. In other words, you will be ‘jealous’ of me. Am I right or am I right? 😉

And, similarly, if you say this exact same thing in front of me, I will also think and feel the same. So, what’s the point? The point is that we are not what we want! We don’t do what we feel like doing. We don’t speak what we feel like saying. We don’t take decisions for ourselves. We don’t stand up for ourselves. We let circumstances and other people take over us and let them alter our choices. Or, the worst case, we simply don’t think. We leave everything in the hands of the so-called destiny and say ki “Jo Hoga Dekha Jayega”.

Now, there are only two situations when we say this particular statement. The first case is when we are 100% (approximately :P) confident that we are ready to face the circumstances, which is almost how it should be. The second, and the worst case when we say this is when we are not at all confident about ourselves and we are living life luxuriously by wasting our precious time and our parent’s not-so-precious money. But anyways, I am no one to tell you how to live your life. Right? You get to decide that bit of it yourself. And I won’t bore you by going into the whole philosophy thing, which, mind you, is necessary from time to time.

So, the first time I heard this sentence was when I was watching a speech by Steve Jobs, and he said something about ‘Connecting the Dots’. I found it really interesting. It is basically the english version of ‘Jo Hota Hai Acche Ke Liye Hota Hai.” But, one thing which was a bit off-beat (but it is true) was that he said that you can only connect the dots looking backwards. Which means that we don’t know what impact the current action/situation is going to have on our life. When we look back after a while, we will realize that whatever happened was exactly how it was supposed to. So, he said that we should not worry about the circumstances and should keep doing whatever we love.

I heard this for a second time when Sandeep Maheshwari quoted the exact same speech in one of his sessions. He again emphasized this particular point about connecting the dots only looking backwards. And honestly, I did consider it as a possibility, until what recently happened. Because now, I believe that it is one hundred percent true.

Let me just tell you what happened. I was supposed to make something, alright. I won’t tell you what it was exactly, because it’s still under official review. So, just bear with me until it is officially approved! It was something to do with making videos and required me to be alone in the room while doing it, so that the audio quality is proper. At first, I was unable to find time alone in the room. I have three roommates, and at least one of them used to be with me always. So, I was unable to do anything. Almost a week passed. Then, I got a call from that guy informing me that the DEADLINE to submit it was exactly 10 days including the day of that call. So, I started finalising the pre-recording stuff. After I was done with that, I asked my roommates to give me the room alone for an hour. They are really nice people and they understood my condition and agreed. I did not tell them what I was working on. I have this silly habit of not telling anyone until I get it done. Probably becuase there is always a possibilty of it turning out not-so-good, so I can just chuk it without anyone taunting me about it. So, I recorded three sample videos which I had to send that day itself. If those were approved, then I was to start working on the project. Fortunately, they were approved, despite of the terrible audio quality. He specifically instructed me on the phone that I needed to be more careful with the audio thing.

Then, I had about 9 days to finish the whole thing, which, just for the record, included approx 4 hours of video recording and almost five times that for editing them. I was worried as I hardly got half an hour or so daily alone in the room. And, just to remind you, it was official work. So, if I said that I will do it, I had to, unless I was willing to spoil my reputation before even earning it. It was an opportunity which I did not wanted to miss at any cost. I seriously did not know how was I going to record the videos. I said yes to that guy, not at all sure of how I was going to finish it before the deadline. Plus, I had no idea how to go about with the audio thing.

But then, this happened. And I am able to relate to all of it now, after completing the project. I mean, now when I look back at all that happened, everything makes perfect sense!

We had to shoot a documentary for an event here in VIT. And there, I got the idea for the audio. What we did for the documentary interviews was we recorded the audio on a mobile and then, clubbed it together with the video from the camera. I tried it out. I recorded my video separately and audio separately on my ipod simultaneously. Then, with the help of a video editing software, I managed to remove the original audio of the video and replaced it with the ipod’s audio. The audio quality problem was solved. There was only one more problem. That was about being alone in the room. I could not possibly send them out on a regular basis. Once is fine, but not daily, doesn’t feel good. Then, out of nowhere, two of my roommates fell ill. One got chicken pox and the other one had a pretty serious fever. So, both of them took medical leaves and went home. Now, I am not saying that their getting ill is a good thing. It is a terrible thing, especially chicken pox. It’s a disgusting disease. But, the timing was so, well, how do I put it, perfect! Who could have considered such a possibilty? I mean, not even in my wildest of dreams would I ever think that two of them will fall ill and go home. So, two went home and the third one has evening slot classes while I have morning slot. Thus, there I was, having a lot of free time alone in the room. So, somehow, I took the advantage of this opportunity and managed to complete the project.

So, you know, what I mean is, I did not know all this was going to happen when I agreed to take up this task. Things happened with such a perfect timing, that I somehow managed to finish it. That’s what I am talking about. That’s what ‘Connecting the Dots’ means. Things usually turn out good, if you are really willing to give it a shot. Of course, the worst case is what if my video gets rejected. Well, there are only two ways to go about it if it unfortunately happens. First, I take it very seriously and consider it a failure and start criticizing myself that I am a fool who can’t even pull one small thing off. This eventually will lead to me not trying out anythig else in the future. Or, the second way is to feel content that I did the best I could, and he did not know how I managed to make it in the first place. So, it’s his loss that he lost a good partner to work with. Because, the videos can be shot again and re-edited, but, hardworking people and the ones to finish it on time are difficult to find. Also, that is not the only place to put my video. If he rejects it, even better, I will upload it on youtube, where I probably might get a bigger audience. Because I know what all the video contains, and I am confident that people will like it. So, that’s the second way. But, for the second way to actually happen, you should be confident enough about your own work. Which again takes us back to the very reason for that particular topic. If you have a DEADLINE, you will finish it, definitely. No doubt about that. The point is, how well do you do it! Do you really work on it? Or you just copy it from somewhere and put your name on it and submit it.

I have only one thing to say to this, if you are doing something (willingly or unwillingly) try to put some effort in it. Because, in the end, when it is done, there should not be any regrets. It happens. If I don’t do something nicely, I usually think that it would have been better if I would have did this and that. So, instead of regretting it later on, why not try and put a little more effort?

You might have had similar experiences.

And, if this is valid for such a small thing, I am sure it will be valid for the entire life too! Everything will fall into place. Just keep doing what you love. And don’t give a damn about what other people say, because, whether you do something or not, people always have something to say.

Have confidence. Trust yourself. Believe in what you do. That’s the only thing that matters!

In the end, it always makes sense. Doesn’t it?

Think for yourself.