6 Months. 6 Points.

I completed 6 months at Google today. Like my mom had predicted, they went by in a flash and I didn’t even realize it. Scary to think your whole life could be like that and you would be left with nothing at the end of it. Except for some money and a whole lot of rubbish blogposts.

But, my whole life is not over and I am certainly holding a few things with me. So what did the last 6 months show me?

1. Throw yourself whole-heartedly into whatever you are doing/ wherever you are going. Hesitation can only bring regrets. I am not advocating impulsiveness or rashness. Just that, don’t hold back or try to deny the inevitable. And learn to enjoy the present instead of worrying about the future or cribbing about the past. If I had joined on the date I was initially supposed to, I would have had the ‘awesome fun’ at Hyderabad that is stuff of Google legend. No regrets, but if I had been more open then …

2. I will always seek out those who can teach me something, even if it how to write meeting minutes. I will always seek out those who I can gape at in wonder and positively adore. Or they will happen to me. Either way, touchwood!

Perfection, diligence, a sense of responsibility will always warm my heart and endear me to people. I shall continue to be pleasantly surprised and impressed by people working systematically, by people with a strong work ethic and by people who will have all the fun in the world while sticking to deadlines 🙂

3. London is a city perfectly suited to me. It is organized and has a crisp, businesslike pace to it. It is made for the people who like to be independent, with maps at strategic distances, an awesome public transport system and a compactness to the city which makes all travel seem comfortable. I will go back there again, someday. For sure. And I actually like travelling, exploring new places and soaking in the culture. And I resolve to travel more.

4. Some things happen briefly and last a lifetime. Like my first ever team in my first ever job. UK iDSO will always be missed. It also taught me that not everything will last, most things will be over in the blink of an eye. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that they happened, that you have memories and relationships to carry forward fromt that, which will enrich your life in the future.

5. I need to feel free. I have always known this but 6 months of working have made me realize how central this is to my life, my happiness and if I may be extreme, to my sanity. I cannot feel stifled, interrogated or constantly watched over. I need my space, privacy and freedom.

6. It’s easy to be the #1 company in the absence of electronic cards that monitor when you come and go from office. When the only guiding line to all privileges and freedoms is ‘Be Reasonable’. When nothing is banned, everything is left to the judgement of the individual making it a workplace for respectable adults, not a hostel for school-children. When your employees walk into office with the anticipation of something new happening.  When ‘Secret Santa’ is allowed to be more important than work during Christmas. When food is free and unlimited and in abundance. When you get a special company edition phone for Christmas.

Celebration is good. Celebration is excellent. Google re-affirmed my belief that small things done to mark occasions can go a long way in just make days brighter. They don’t take much effort but they show that people care, and that they are thinking about you. From the lavish Diwali and christmas celebrations to the tri-color balloons on the eve of Republic Day to the spooky cafe decorations for Friday the 13th, every festival, every occasion has just been so much happier and jolly.

I am sure learning how to make a good company. And that its always, always in the details. And that being perfect or the best doesn’t take much time. it only takes a little bit of thought and effort. That’s doable, isn’t it?

Lastly, care a little less! 🙂


Bievenue 2012*

*the French effect is due to the fact that I spent all morning at work perusing through my Paris photographs.

I wonder why I have made ‘This is not a .. ’ line a signature style. Not that I write it much, but it is the first thing to spring to my head whenever I write anything. So this time, I am not going to define. I had the best, craziest New Year’s bash in a long, long time. It was an amazing start to the New Year and has left me completely content and happy.

2011 was a lot of things. 2011 began with reminding me what it felt like to work really hard, have sleepless nights, be passionate to the point of obsession about something and then, do it spectacularly well. It was a feeling I had forgotten somewhere in the drift of college and growing up. It made me sleep well at night. That feeling was important and I have a feeling, the memory of how that felt will define how I do a lot of things this year. 2011 was the year of graduating, the most terrifying transition in life. It left me confused and disillusioned. And rather unhappy. 2011 has also been the year of drift, of confusion, of moments of hopelessness. 2011 was the year when I saw how difficult relationships can be and that you have to see the effort people put into them before deciding whether you doing enough or not. 2011 was a year of random fears and randomer feelings. 2011 was the year of my first foreign trip and the desire to fly all around the world. 2011 was the year of joining Google and realizing how quickly people can move from being colleagues to friends and that I don’t necessarily have to be wary of the big, bad world. There are plenty of good people in there and I will find them. 2011 was the year of many moments of ecstasy at the idea that the most fantastic things can happen to you, that the most ridiculous dreams can come true, if you have faith and hang in there.

I hope 2011 has made me a stronger, wiser person. i hope it has made me believe in looking at the bright side of things and putting things into perspective. I hope it has taught me to have patience and accept what I cannot change and to constantly ask myself – what would I do if I was not afraid? I hope I have learnt all that 2011 had to teach and I will not make those mistakes, making myself and those who love me unhappy.

2011 was a lot of things. I want 2012 to be more. And I know it will all have to come from myself. I want 2012 to give me answers. I want resolutions and new beginnings. I want to learn more about the world and its workings, look beyond my cozy space. At the same time, I want to find myself [No, I have not ‘lost’ myself, that’s impossible to do] I want to have answers to any personal questions I may be asked [rudely or not] I want to spend more time with people I love. And those who love me. I want to travel randomly, take off suddenly and fly away. I also want 48 hours in a day. I want to bring my focus back to my life and what I would do with it if I were completely alone. I want to love more deeply, live more freely, not fear heartbreak and care a little less.

I want 2012 to be awesome. And not just because the world is going to end.