Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Eulogies vs Resumes

When I had my usual round of walk after dinner today, suddenly I remembered the speech I gave for my felicitation at BIMS, Mysore, India in front of the junior students. I said quite a lot of things at that time starting from how I ended up in India, how I found India for my two-year stay, and what the advice I could give as senior to them. However, one particular thing suddenly struck me tonight. I remember the last line that I said was "Live with integrity because in the end of your life, it's not how many BMWs you have, it's not in how many acres of land your build your house, it's not how many gold medals you bagged during your academic life, it's not about the marks you obtain during your studies, it's not how much money you have in your bank account... it's basically about how you live your life, how you share your life with all the people whom you love and who love you... with the people who trust you".

What I wish to say is that when you passed away one day, there would be an eulogy. If you have noticed, this eulogy is entirely different from what we define as success in our daily lives. And this reminds me to the eulogy I said at my grandpa's funeral. I had the honor to do that representing the family and at the last line, I said ".. wherever I am, I promise that I shall follow your legacy...". In the end, it was about what my grandpa had taught me that I wish to carry on in my life. In the end, it's all about the fundamental things that made us be remembered in people's hearts and minds. It's about the legacy we wish to carry on, not the materialistic success we wish to copycat.

It's an entirely different parameter of how we see a person. We don't have the tendency to say:
  • "He traveled a lot during his tenure and that had jeopardized his relationship with his wife and children, but it was worth it as he earned $1 billion a month during the past 20 years of his life".
  • "She never comes out of home. She didn't have many real friends but she has 1049 friends in Facebook and everyone posted "Sorry to lose you" on her wall. There were 731 posts. That is really a great achievement".
  • "The best thing about him is when he was promoted to be the CEO of the company".
  • "He had bagged 18 gold medals during his post-graduate study for securing 97% marks in most of the subjects".

Of course, sometimes we would hear some achievements in terms of work, but that won't be the main thing. Those are not what we hear as eulogies after someone passed away. If those things aren't the things said in our eulogies, then why do we live life for something which is not going to be in our eulogies? Our eulogies aren't going to be our resumes no matter how brilliantly we polish those resumes. We don't hear their resumes, folks. We heard what are analyzed in their life from a completely deviated course of life that we normally too busy to see in our daily lives.

I am not blaming your financial success. I am not blaming the millions of likes on your Facebook Page. I am not blaming your extraordinary capacity in making excellent presentations in front of thousands of people. I am not blaming your promotion to be the CEO of a division. I am not blaming your feat as being the richest person in the region. Definitely that's not what my point is.

My point is, why can't we balance our resumes with our eulogies? Is it possible? Could you match your success with a humble character? Could you match your promotion with a trustworthy character? Could you match your extraordinary skills with accountability?

I am not a perfect human being, I will never be but I believe that no matter how small I am, there will always be something good that I could share to people, if only I have the courage to see inside myself and find that goodness. I ever heard my grandpa & mom said "Don't do what I do, but do what I say because I may do some wrong in my life, there are certain negativity that I no longer could change in my life, but what I say to you is always for your own good" and at this phase and age of life, I think something that I could share with people is:

 "Try to live your life the way you wish to be remembered by those whom you love, who love you, who trust you.
Make mistakes, but don't deny it. Behave foolishly, but try to fix it. Say stupid things, but ask for forgiveness, be accountable. Be a jerk, but don't be an egomaniac.
Don't make bad things as a habit.
Polish yourself every single day into a betterment.
Because in the end, it's ALWAYS about how you touch others' hearts.
No matter how small it could be".

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