Guest Post by Rahul Bandiwadekar (Pause… Live! Don’t just Exist!!)



Year 2015. I was just done with my MBA and was placed in a French Multinational Company. All of 24 years old and eager to win at everything there is. One of the blessings(read: curses) of getting out of an MBA for me at least was it molded me into another potential rat race candidate if I wasn’t one already. I kept telling myself, “alright, let me just grind it out and set myself up for the next few years and then I'm gonna chill.”

Close to 4 years later… one evening, I was enjoying a round of drinks with Dad when he popped the question while glancing through his Facebook app, “hey I see your friends did a trip to Dubai, and another group is doing a Euro Trip. What happened? Didn’t get your leaves approved?”

To which I responded, “No, to be honest I didn’t even ask for leaves. I lied to my friends about it however so please keep that in mind if it ever pops up in any future conversation… Maybe later… I've still got a lot to do. A lot to achieve. Maybe once that’s done, I will.”

What followed was the biggest and most valuable life lesson I ever got…

He said, “Son I'm 58 years old. I started working when I was 17. We were so financially screwed that some days there was no food at home. Back then, I said the exact same words you just said to me, and probably I can say to myself that I was justified in saying so.”

In my head I thought of course there is no comparison between a person who needs to hustle because he needs to ensure there is food at his family’s table the next day and a guy who is just stubborn AF.

Anyway, “A few years down the line, I got married to your mom and started our car rental business. I didn’t take the time out to relax and enjoy then because I had decided I will do it once I own a 100 cars. Within a few years, we achieved that, but there was a new ambition, now I decided I will take my time off once our company is the biggest car rental company in Mumbai.” This was somewhere around the start of year 2005.

On 26th July, 2005, during the Mumbai floods, he lost almost all of his 160 cars and an empire he built from scratch crumbled in front of his own eyes in just a matter of few hours. To be honest I'm still surprised how is the guy still alive after watching his entire life work literally go down the drain so quickly.

He continued, “Now at this point, I was back to where I was when I was 17 or rather far worse because at 17 we had no money, but now we have crores of debt. I had your education to take care of, and a lot many other financial commitments. What dawned upon me is, this is what life is going to be about. Constant ups and downs. It’s a loop. You need to find your moments AMIDST the hustle. I'm not saying you be one of those guys who just splurges money and throws away his life but you got to find your moments. It took me close to 30 years to realize this. I hope you don’t.”

And that was it. I realized not just me but so many people live their lives in this constant pursuit. This endless race that’s only in our head.

What is it that makes you laugh harder?

An appreciation email you received at work? Or that one time you and your friends pulled off some really crazy shit?

Do you look back at your first promotion as fondly as you would look back at a moment from the past where you truly truly lived?

After doing a rough estimate of the budget needed and confirming that its possible with the savings I kept aside I called up my girlfriend and said, “We’re going on a road trip across Scotland and for the Cricket World cup in England.”

Three months later we embarked on our crazy adventure trip.. we drove across the wilderness, lost our way, our car broke down too, both of us bet each other to flirt in hindi with the local folks there and the first to get asked out wins (SHE WON), watched a cricket match, plundered one pub after another across London and came back with so many insanely happy memories!!

Pause… Live! Don’t just exist. Don’t throw your life away…there's a lot more to it than your career or your paycheck.

For me, I'm most alive when travelling. What about you?


About the Author

Rahul Bandiwadekar, 29, is an MBA from SIBM Pune and is currently based out of Bangalore where he is the Service Delivery Advisor for the EMEA region for his company. He is crazy about travelling, exploring new places and meeting new people and is into a lot of sports (Cricket, Swimming, Badminton, Squash, Tennis, Basketball, Volleyball.. the list goes on), Dancing & Singing.

Lately he has learnt cooking as well much to the courtesy of the Pandemic.




Comments

  1. Very good Rahul, keep writing

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  2. Awesome!!! I'm happy that you realized this sooner than later! Here's to many more such adventures! And hats of to ur dad for being strong!

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  3. Awesome Rahul n enjoy your life to the fullest..

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  4. A breather on a Monday! Wonderful read.

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  5. Ragul,that was straight from your heart and way to go. You should meet up with your aunt Smita who shares the same philosophy in life. You are the youth of today who knows how to live,work and enjoy. Good wishes to many more adventures in life.

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  6. It pays to be prepared and Experience is the Mother of all Wisdom! Well written Budd ! Cheers

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  7. Twinkle twinkle Little star, Rahul is super star😄

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  8. Well written Rahul!
    Keep writing.

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  9. Nicely written n expressed. God bless u!!

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  10. Rahul, ur fortunate that ur dad encouraged u n ur inspiring others . It is really awesome . Keep writing. God bless u.

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  11. Life is a learning process my boy.Hatsoff to ur dadfor his grit and determination.Life can b s lot of fun to Balance it Eell written Krep it up-Lata Bhanfsry

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