Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Out of my comfort zone

Changes are inevitable, and they keep following us through our lifespan. They may catch us unaware at many times, they may take ages to arrive after playing in milieu, they can make you happy, they can render you gloomy, they may bring a brilliant sense of expectation around which you fondly call hope, and they drive us through this journey named life. On hindsight, it’s changes that put together our existence.

Such a change is lingering right beside me, staring at my eyes with a smiling face - it arrived through a lot of contemplations and reached me quite gradually. Yes, I am leaving a much celebrated, coveted family which started out 25 years back with 7 sturdy pillars holding their hands together with nothing more than loads of determination, a place which used to be in the dreams of all of us while we studied, a family which adopted my career at its infancy and made it grow to what it is now, a name that earned me the best hug of my life from my father when they selected me, a company without which I could never dream my life to be what it is – a magnificent place named Infosys. Moving from such a status-quo domicile to a small-by-comparison organization in Cochin raised a few eyebrows. I refrained from giving a bulleted reason list, and reduced it to one easy word of truth which people don’t tend to question further ‘Personal!’.

The life with Infosys family has been a grand ride - with lots of new thrilling experiences during the journey, a lot of passengers – old and experienced, young and thrilled – all who gave a lot of lessons to me, most of the times we went through bumpy landscapes – but that allowed us to cherish each and every destination that we stopped by. I am sure that I was able to imbibe a lot of new thoughts, study specific behavioral details that made some excellent managers here, create a lot of friends and few not-so-good ones, help many of my team members to imagine and work better, tell my opinions frank-on-the-face to people irrespective of their level – which sure resulted in some happy and unhappy incidents, but more than anything this place has paved a way to crystallize my thoughts about what I want to be. The values followed by the founders really makes you aspire and reverie that you can be a person of your dreams. Yeah, I agree that it was not an eternal easy ride; there were moments of frustrations which can clearly be seen in some of my previous posts - On Retrospection, An offer Coolie could not refuse, Ruthless, Well-Balanced Life. Then there was this new high level manager who claims himself to be a ‘great-attitude’ person, who learnt that I am leaving and asked me – “I heard that you are leaving due to some health issues of an immediate relative. You are not lying, right?” – I was wondering if anyone who has a sane heart would lie about these things…So much for culture and professionalism of that person. But, that sure arrives as a ‘part and parcel’ of any large corporation. My life here for past 5 years has been nothing less than good - I was recognized, valued and there was lot of visibility for career growth. I could learn from some exceptional managers in Mohan and Shashank who would really be the examples to follow in life and career, I could lead some exceptionally intelligent talents in Sudhesh and Anirban, both of whom I am sure would soar to radiant heights in their life.

Yes, it would have been real simple to move ahead in this habituated circle of affairs, when you are comfortable with the present and secure with the future. Then there is that human element of change-resistance, where you have that inherent lack of confidence about the new environment and challenges that you are going to be stacked against, and a conscious apprehension about how you will embark upon it. On the top of all these, there are those claws of a circle of distant-relatives, which form that creamy layer of the ‘society’ around you, who will pounce on you with that ‘I told you not-to’ façade, should my new step falter a bit. And stupidly enough, when odds are stacked against, I thought this is the perfect time to call for a change. It’s a road traveled less, a deviation from the abode of opportunities and I am ready for the adventure :).

Also, there is a tenderness that engulfs me, when I know that the gorgeous winged beast that has been carrying me around for the past 1.5 years is no longer with me. We had a great time together, our long trip to Wayanad being the best among the lot. All those early mornings and late nights to/from Infy during my past two ultra-hectic development projects, when the mind would be saturated with the stress surrounding the work, the red Honda Unicorn acted as if it had its own mind. It took my tired physique promptly between places, and carried me around like a close comrade would do. He has been a kind friend, and was too close to me to be drawn apart. The risk involved in transporting him from here to Cochin in freight, the running around that needs to be done with the RTO offices to get him registered in Kerala made me a bit hesitant to take him with me. But, more than anything, the love that struck me when I met that uncomplicated country maiden - a bird that flew with an imposing aristocracy which left me awestruck, made me decide that its time to part. I handed over the keys of my dear friend; to a person I am sure will take care of him like family. Yes - I also bought a Royal Enfield Thunderbird back in Cochin, which would be waiting for me once I get back there. Hopefully, me, PP and Dhanu will all fly in our birds in the 2008 Royal Enfield Himalayan Odyssey.

As I stare at these changes, I realize that the fact is that I have been too used to this life. I was too familiar with the place I was employed, I was confident about the work I was doing, I always had a great time from my gang at home, I have been very unperturbed and easy – and it’s been too comfortable to face any sudden turbulence. Just like it was when in US, I am getting into that narrow zone of ease, that zone of pure comfort and relaxation, which I don’t savor too much for long durations. There is more to life than that, there are more challenges to take and live with. It’s more about reaching forward, clinging to your roots and dragging it along with you. It’s more about striking a balance between life and career. It’s more about doing what you believe you are capable of. It’s mostly about realizing the price tag that you put for yourself. At least, I wish so – when I drive out of the land of opportunities, the garden city of Bangalore which was my home for past 5 years, on August 12, 2006. There is a long long way to go, and I feel sure that I have made the initial few steps right. Or so I hope….as I take leave from my routines, as I move out of my comfort zone....

45 comments:

Dew Drops said...

Royal Enfield Himalayam Odyssy ???????

Aaaahhhhhhhh I am jealous

Reshmi said...

All the very best Abhi..:)..It guts to move out of ur comfort zone..U hav decided on ur priorities in life..N now its upto u to do justice 2 ur decision..N I'm sure u will..:)
Keep posting..And keep in touch..

Attribution said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Attribution said...

Good luck! And hope the Madness continues.

neermathalam said...

Move on Mad man
let the new doors
bring more warmth
let the new shore
bring more shells
and the parting post
is wonderful as usual

Seema said...

Abhi,
Though not a friend or even n acquaintance for u..just acomenter on yr posts..cdnt stop these sincere wishes n good luck goin year way on tis bold venture!
This one by Goethe has always been my inspiration on such ventures-
Whatever u can do or dream u can, begin it
Boldness has Genius,Power n Magic in it!!
We cut above the rest when v write the rules,work smart n stay focus..breakin new grounds n winnin things on our terms...
Last but not the least congrats on the new possession..the bird..waitin to watch pics of the. Himalayan odyssey frm the trio!!!

Avinash said...

Good Luck dude. And Royal Enfield is a good choice. I own one and I love my bullet more than anything else...
Wish you all the luck. Nothing better than moving closer to home dude. After all we earn to live a happy life, and the first step to it is being closer to home :)
All the best! You will be away, but your blogs will tell us how you are. So keep posting!

flyaway mind said...

hello.. so u moving out frm the comfort zone to the turbulent waters.. the brand name of infosys might be lost..but at the end of the day, it'z always the exposure & challenging nature of ur work that counts..rt?and at some point, everybody wanna return to their roots.. so it'z all the more good if it'z now.. good luck with ur new life

Krishnan said...

Now, the fun begins :-)
Like some guy called Johnnie Walker once said 'Keep Walking' :-)

CodeRed said...

hellooo i also became a blogger , thru trails i reached a blog named nair ..and felt posting a comment ...{ friday night , was getting bored.. }

keep posting.. Post something , your old memories..really old.. something from 95-97..

-hari

Sridhar Raman said...

"Out of my comfort zone"...the first thing that came to my mind was the obvious auto-biography of the same name. But more than that, it was the person who wrote the foreword for that book...and I am sure you would be thinking along the same lines as well.

Just like "his" foreword, your post now is just a foreword for your subsequent achievements. Way to go da! I am very happy for you.

jatin sharma said...

Hi Abhilash

Nice to read all what you wrote, and its really nice to think that someone else also thinks the same way I do...but I am too small and too less experienced in front of you. Be in touch at jatinksharma@yahoo.com .... now dont say you dont remember me..I used to sit int the cubicle in between you and Bala. Hope you remember our few talks as well which we used to have on our rides back home in the bus. catch you later.

Randhir said...

All the best Abhi. Great decision dude. Keep posting and buzz me when you are in Bangalore next. Let's catch up.

Prashant/* said...

Hey first time on your blog and it's a pleasure reading it! Move on - shake up your cozy comfortable life and that's what will take you places .. after all Narayan Murthy and Co could've worked for their lives in Patni .. if they hadn't moved out of thier comfort zones, this pride of India called Infosys would've never been around! It is this shake up in life that makes you a stronger person! Good luck with the new endevours ..

pophabhi said...

Dewdy: Yes - Its Royal enfield Himalayan Odyssey. No need to be jealous. You can get one. Ladies are also take part in the Odyssey.
Reshmi: Thank you! I sure will try to do justice. Am not out of the blog world. Its just a change of location :)
Attribution: Thanks! And nice to see you back here. Great! Madness will continue for sure.
Neermathalam: That was really good. Nimishakavi!
Seema: Thanks a lot yaar. Our blog group is a big group of friends, rite? That poem was really nice. And yes...you can see the trio riding Red Thunderbirds across Himalayas in NDTV soon. Dhanu and PP are gonna ride my bird tomorrow.
Avi: Royal Enfield is the real beast. Wonderful she is. Meant for men. Yes da...Home is the first step to dreams. We will surely be in touch.
Flyaway:Spot on. There is no point in brooding over the past. Look out for chances, and aggression comes naturally. Will surely catch on, where else can I travel? Thanks a lot for your wishes!
Kich:Waiting for you to be back. You draw the right analogies.
Hari: Great to see you here da. Memories of 95-97 are too hazy, at least I dont want to remember them :).
Chilli: You caught it. I bought the book and thought that any significant change suits the name. Foreword was real good.
Jatin:It was a real surprise to see you here. No one can insignificant to others, you are one gem of a person. You keep in touch and thanks for the wishes. :)
Randhir:Thanks a lot, man. Yep - Will keep visiting your blog and we will meet up once you are back.
Prashanth:Welcome here, and thanks for visiting. You are abs rite. Why waste a chance to improve rather than run in same pace in an established place? Thanks a lot for your wishes. Keep visiting !

hope and love said...

wow..! great..1

mathew said...

Infy has always been kinda a safe zone..really understand how it feels being in the open!!

silverine said...

Best of luck and have fun in the new job...you are in the right place. Me moving out of my comfort zone too for the very same reasons... :)

Alexis Leon said...

Welcome to Cochin. And all the best for your new phase in life.

flyaway mind said...

onasamsakal..have a superb day!!!

bratfromcochin said...

It has been a while since you jumped jobs. So it is a bit bleated. I am an old friend.
Hope things are working out. Gud Luck

manjulakshmi said...

nice blog!!!! donno how i rchd ur blog...but its worth readng....hmm..so ur frm banglre??even me....

Venkateshwar Sahai said...

touching post.. one that makes a lot of sense and resonates with what i am feeling right now :-)

pophabhi said...

Doc: Thanks!
Mathew: Safe zone is a kind of boundary. You know what I mean. :)
Silver:Thank you! Wow - So the blog princess is also planning to do the same? Best of luck to you too!
Alexis:Thanks Alexis! I've always been in Cochin, rest was an abberation. It would be great to meet you one day...
Flyaway: Although late, Thank you - And same to you - for next year :D
Brat: Would be great if I know who it is. Things are working out, indeed. Thanks!
Manju:Thanks for visiting. I am not from Bangalore. Its been Cochin all the while!
Venkat:Man, you planning something? :D

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