What does ‘Be Yourself’ really mean?

One of the most multidimensional advice someone can give you, and mind you, people mostly rake out this complicated abstract piece of advice in a casual-profound tone, is ‘be yourself’. I have often been super confused whenever somebody would ask me to be myself. How to be successful? Be yourself. How to ace an interview? Just be yourself. How to spend your life? By being yourself. There’s this entire commercial industry full of life advises, holistic life-approach coaches and career counselors instrumentally and religiously teaching you how to be someone else, and when you successfully master the 9/10 points on how to be someone else, the 10th point is to be yourself. What the hell?! If that doesn’t deploy fits of existential crisis in you, what does?
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Men Vs Women: Coping With Rejection

Sometimes I feel envious of how the male gender has stood by each other through thick and thin. I don’t know if it’s a result of the evolutionary process or just how men were coded to be, but they have each other’s back in almost every social situation.

Notice how they are together during a party, when they’re checking out women, when they’re cheating on their girls, when they’re drinking, when in love, when they’re rejected, when they don’t have female attention. When they’re jailed. All the friggin’ time. They might have only women, booze and sports to talk about, but they tend to have definitely formed a bond amongst themselves.

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Why do we constantly get attracted to strangers?

Even when I have deep fulfilling relationships with people close to me, I feel uneasy to admit it but I have always found a certain kind of solace in talking to strangers. Or opening up to them. I’ve never understood why and most of the answers to that seem regular. You know the kind, that justifies the act to cover up a deeper psychological tornado. 

 

The popular answer to this behavior, is that, it’s easier to open up to someone when there are zero stakes in it. The person barely knows you and can’t hurt you with the personal details either way. Unless you’re a billionaire. Which you’re not. 

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The Atrocities Of A Tinder Bio

I signed up for Tinder last year. I wasn’t going through a life shattering breakup (the reason why most of the people are on tinder) or looking for a rebound. I had been quite stably single since 2015 and wanted to check out the phenomenon that is Tinder. I was open to the prospect of serious non-casual dating if I liked somebody enough. We’re all aware of the hush-hush around dating apps, aren’t we? But then this is India and there’s a hush-hush around almost everything that we’re aware of! So who cares?

With sky high hopes and an unfathomable confidence in my ability to attract the opposite gender, I embarked on my digital dating adventure. Being the bitter person that I am, I not only happen to read the biographies that they write but also overtly analyze them. In my humble experience, I have noticed three genres of biographies rampant on tinder.

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Why I need your Facebook Prayers

The other day an old friend and I started talking on Instagram. ‘How have you been?’ he asked me. ‘I’m alright, I guess’ was the tailored reply. I sometimes add ‘I guess’ or similar irrelevant phrases to break the monotony of the usual standard replies. Doesn’t help much, but there’s a certain personalized appeal to that. However, within fifteen minutes of our conversation, I found out that I have moderate clinical depression(it’s just short of severe, incase you have an OCD regarding the scale) . He happens to be a doctor and is currently studying Psychiatry. He gave me a test, which I thought I was too philosophically sound to take. That is my general approach to everything, really. I mostly think I’m too intellectual for most of the shit. The joke is on me, without a doubt. 

I won’t get into the details of how empty I feel or how harrowing it is to be taken seriously by others. Nope. Not my style. That line of depressing monologue is specifically reserved for the men I’m trying to woo. I can barely help myself. Then I sit at the corner of my room and wonder what did I ever say to them, that scared them away! So very unpredictable.

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Digital Paranoia


In the wake of the existential crisis that hits me every Sunday, post 3 am, I decided to examine the reasons behind my unsettled state of mind. There are reasons why I go through this mostly on a Sunday. First, the constant conditioning of 14years of schooling is hard to get rid of. Sundays have mostly been holidays in disguise, 60% of it was spent in going through whatever homework was left, 30% in deciding whether to finish the homework at all, 10% in going over and over the consequences if I don’t, also lightly playing with the idea of being okay with standing outside the class and developing the habit of not giving a fuck, in general. Who knew it’d help during adulthood?

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The Art Of Repeatedly Disappointing Yourself

If there’s anything more personal than our STD profile test reports, it is the tale of repeated disappointments that is so fiercely personal to us that it doesn’t make sense to others, If you tell them. There are few things that we struggle with, everyday ,and sharing these problems with fellow peers only makes you feel pathetic about your own existence because it’s extremely difficult for them to acknowledge that this could be a problem at all.

 

For me, it’s getting up from the bed and going to a degree-offering  institution. 

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Putting Marriage Into Perspective

As homo-sapiens, you’d be aware of the uber successful startup of humans ,through evolution, called Marriage. Religion goes hand in hand. But let’s not talk about religion because I want to live a moderately threat-free life. If healthy, educated adults choose to believe that an imaginary super-human living in the clouds above can dictate his/her life, I don’t know why I should take it upon myself to cure them of schizophrenia. I mean, I don’t really claim to be a nice person, after-all.

Talking of marriage, the film industry at large has promoted marriage as a dreamy concept worth chasing. We’re wannabe cool kids caught in the indo-western conflict of idealism. I know what I’m supposed to want, but I also know what my brain has been washed into wanting.
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At least Learn English!- The grammar of social status.


The other day while scrolling through Facebook mindlessly, I came across the profile of a seemingly popular girl who had posted the screenshot of her conversation with a guy. While the guy was trying his best to convince her to date him, he was falling short of proper grammar. The girl, to make up for his lack of wit, responded to him with ‘Atleast learn ENGLISH!!’. And the conversation was done. That post got over 650 likes on Facebook, and all the fellow Facebook friends were fawning over her ‘witty’ response. Which, by the way, was blunt and far from witty. But Facebook has the potential to make the most bovine of contents go viral, so I’m not surprised.
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What do you really want to do in life?

 ‘So what do you want to be when you grow up?’
I’ve grown up.
I have realized, the more I grow up, the more difficult it gets to answer that question about myself.

I was infinitely more confident regarding what I wanted to be, when I was far from being a grown up. At 24, I have dropped out of one college, switched to a different stream, loathed my decision to switch, questioned myself regarding the stream I am in right now & I’m constantly anxious regarding the numerous other fields that I haven’t explored yet.

‘What happened?’ You may ask. To be extremely honest, I don’t know. I planned my life out at 16, just like you did. Smooth and simple, fool-proof plan. Graduation by 22, well-paying job by 24, higher-education by 25, updating a sentimental status on how I am indebted to people around me and my elders for helping me crack the unimaginably tough XYZ examination at 26, leaving the country shortly afterwards and then occasionally posting about how nostalgic I feel about India. Had it all figured out. I’d be a multi-millionaire by 28 so I can make it to Forbes 30 under 30 list, miraculously meet the love of my life at one of the Forbes Summit that we both are invited to, get married, have kids, live lavishly, die. Master-plan to a happy career and fulfilling life at 16! Nailed it.

But what the hell happened?! Continue reading “What do you really want to do in life?”