When I was a kid, my favourite game was one I'd devised; and it was called 'New life'. My sister and I - we'd set a time for a 'secret meeting' in the veranda with snacks and drinks on the agenda. At the appointed time, we'd sit down with an ornate diary (for inspiration) and pencil and proceed to plan our 'new life'. We'd list the things we'd change; the habits we'd introduce and we'd lose ourselves in imagining this life of perfection. Solving 'mysteries' was almost always a major part of this new life. Why such an obsession with newness, you might ask. I don't really know. I think we used it as a way of brightening our moods and getting ourselves out of a 'funk'. Little did I know that I'd be playing this game for real, later on in life.
If I had to list the times when I embarked on a 'new life', so to speak, they' be the following:
1. When I left school and joined college
2. When I left home for my post-graduation
3. When I joined the workforce
So that's basically the life transitions that everyone goes through. The first one was particularly difficult for me because I was a diffident, introverted child who'd studied in a school with a dismal environment. Transiting to the dazzling, super-talented and uber cool world of St Xavier's was quite a shock and I did not cope as well as I should have done. I shudder to think of what my life would have been if I'd never managed to shake off that air of not 'being good enough'. But that's the thing about life - it ensures that the status quo never remains constant. This is both a good and a bad thing - because neither the good times nor the bad will go on forever. I do believe in some constants though - these are the pillars that stay with you through thick and thin. And a life well lived is a life with at least one solid pillar, in the form of a person, passion or initiative. So when I joined a new college to pursue my graduation in mass media, I decided that this time, I'd truly begin a 'new life' and I did.
It's simple really - all you have to do is imagine who you want to be, and then start acting like that person immediately.
I wanted to be more confident, sociable and pro-active and there wasn't a single day at college when I wasn't doing something to strengthen one or more of these attributes. It's only the beginning that's difficult - eventually, the person you want to be, becomes an indelible part of you. Of course, you may need to prod yourself now and then to remember all that you're capable of, but that's an effort you have to be willing to make. Turkish writer Orhan Pamuk even wrote a novel titled 'The New Life'. The concept has obviously found favour in philosophy and I'm not surprised - there is something extremely attractive about wiping the slate clean. But in my dictionary, starting anew is not about letting go of everything you've been until this point. It's about taking control of yourself and directing yourself in the direction you want.
For that matter, even brands need to #startanewlife now and then. Sometimes, it's an essential aftermath of a crisis; at other times it's merely the need to shake things up and get rid of stagnancy. Here is how Housing.com did it:
Do you wish to #startanewlife? Tell me how you plan to do so as a comment below.