Title: Excel of Life
One of my school teacher once took me aside and told me that what he was about to say will change my life. He went on to say: 'A man without an ambition is like a ship without a rudder. To be successful you need to have an ambition...focus on it so hard that all the obstacles between you and your ambition fades away.'
No wonder he chose me to shower his wisdom on. I was the person who was most clueless about what to do with his life. In fact I still am.
I asked him innocently, ' if you don't look at the obstacles you can bump into one of it and injure yourself'. He had no answer. He looked at me disappointed,...and went away. He knew I was a lost cause.
How do you measure success at the end of your life?
It is all about how many red dots you have in your excel. I will explain that in a minute.
To me there is only one criterion of success- Happiness.
Happiness is made of happy memories. By focusing too much on ambition you make just two memories. One where you set the target, and another where you achieve it. Just two memories are not going to make you a happy person. You need more happy memories.
A rudder guides a ship to know destinations. To discover new places you need to throw away the rudder. Columbus would have never found America if he was not lost. My teacher was right...I am lost....and happily so...
Now let me come back to the Excel.
This is what I made. A 45*24 martix.
Ideally you should make a 90*12 matrix.
Every year has 12 months and the assumption is that you live till 90.
So every month of your life is a square in that excel.
90*12 is same as 45*24, just easier to handle.
When I looked at that I said ... boy it is not that big! One month passes at the blink of an eye. All my month fits in just one screen!
The first thing I said is ...I don’t have much time left.
The more I looked at it the more it got worse.
I have already spent 35 *12 boxes.
I retire at 58.
The last decade or two, if I survive that long, I am going to be really old.
The message is clearly out there...there aren’t many box left!
Now mark all your happy memories in the excel as red dot. The number of red boxes in there is the actual measure of your success.
I request all of you to make this excel. Put all the important events of your life in it, that has happened or will happen. If you have wishes ...decide a date and put them there. Then check how many red boxes you have...and how many you have planned for.
We are all born with a terminal disease call ageing. We will eventually run out of life. Make the most of it now, when you can.
Most of us tend to plan a lot for the future. We try and save a lot for the future. If your plan is to save now and enjoy after retirement, think again...how many boxes will you actually have.
Believe me, no matter how young you are; there isn’t a lot of future left.
I do not want to sound negative. Take the right message out of this. Let this excel trigger you to enjoy your life. Make your excel as red as you can, as fast as you can. Life is like ice-cream, enjoy before it melts.
How many red dots do you have?