Sunday, June 9, 2013

Thought for the Day - Don't Look to Impress, Instead Express

In fact this is a brilliant line from the movie ABCD where Prabhu Deva, the hardworking dance guru tells his students that they must not try to impress, but seek to express themselves. At the same time we have his rival guru, Kaykay Menon telling his upscale students that they must look to impress, to dazzle and every move they make must be to impress!
Some place on the Mumbai-Pune expressway

But we all know that when we seek to impress we will not even do justice to what we have trained to. Our minds are totally occupied by what others are thinking, whether they are already judging you, whether you should do something flamboyant to impress them. In such circumstances (ask me, I have done this many times and have fallen flat on my face!) we perform much less than what we have prepared for, what we are capable of.

Aditya asked me this good question today in a small chat we had at Kindle Your Mind, Gachibowli in a 'Meet the Author' session. He asked me how he could keep his focus in a game where he knows everyone is watching and cited an example where he lost 6-0, 6-0 in a tennis match against the Goa campus. Two things could have happened in his case. One is an extreme focus on losing. And two, related to the first one, what others may think. In both cases, the mind is thinking about others, about how to impress them. How not to fall in their eyes.

The thoughts are not about the racquet and the ball.

In such circumstances, clear your thoughts of all external factors and stick to the absolute present. The NOW. Focus on nothing but the ball and the racquet meeting the ball. Empty all other thoughts. Focus on the exact moment of the ball meeting the racquet. That kind of concentration will shut out the outside and all thoughts related to it.

It happens in presentations, in meetings, in interviews too. If we look to impress, we are more likely to make as ass of ourselves. It is better to be focussed on the process. On the purpose of why you are there.

Be in the now. And express yourself. You will make a meaningful contribution. You will bring 'you' to life.

1 comment:

Rajendra said...

That's a good line. On similar lines, someone once said, that a teacher's job is not to cover the syllabus, but to uncover it!