I was having a chat with a very dear friend who was narrating an incident where a toxic senior at workplace was becoming overwhelmingly unbearable. In line with the conversation, I tried explaining the management of both toxic as well as adorable people that we meet in the journey of our lives referring to a train journey in India.
If you have traveled on a long distance train journey here, you will know what I am about to tell. Seated at a window berth ensconced in a small cubicle you are exposed to the vastness of this piece of continent of this planet. Large swathes of land pass by for hours at a stretch while you recollect how people quarrel back home for inches of land. In such interesting journeys, I have had the endearing opportunity of meeting some very interesting people. Be it the First class where I have met retired commanders of the navy now brokering arms deals, giving me invaluable insights on myriad topics ranging from the mindsets of the MOD babus at south block to how Kurian the father of milk revolution was eventually shortchanged at his own territories. In the second AC I have met plant heads talking about the intricacies of managing plants along with a ringside view of their insecurities which don’t differ much from the air conditioned corridors of multinationals or service industries, Pensioners with their woes of age and offspring management, astrologers who have raked it big cashing in on the human psyche, govt servants with diverse opinions on varied governments they served etc etc..
I have also sometimes had the unfortunate experience of having to deal with rude co passengers fighting ferociously over luggage space beneath the berth or switching the fan on or off as the case may be and ensuring that the remaining journey passes by enduring the emitted bone-chilling coldness of Siberian deserts.
But why am I narrating all about a train journey in such detail.
Well, Life is almost like a train journey, is what I told my dear friend. The journey is not the destination. Neither is the destination the only purpose of our lives. In varied circumstances and needs we undertake various journeys and reach various destinations for various purposes. We get to meet adorably wonderful people and abhorrently toxic people. When we meet the wonderful ones, you get a feeling that you have forged lifetime relationships and that may be true too. But that doesn’t mean you let go of the journey or your destination and become their guests for lifetime since you liked them a lot. And when you get to meet the toxic people, you eventually learn to ignore them almost like how your nose is not obstructing your eye from reading this article. It has learnt to ignore any impediment to its vision at a young age itself. The co-passengers of your journey do not define your journey or its destination or its purpose… they may add value or be an irritant as the case may be, yet they are nothing to your plan of things.
One needs to learn to learn from the experiences and keep moving. The toxicity of any individual can only impact you if it is allowed an entry into your scheme of things. And this decision is yours to make. People will come and go in your life. What you choose to do with them, the learnings they give, the experiences that they impart is absolutely your decision. How much importance you may want to accord to their endearabilty or despicability is totally your choice. And your choice will have its bearing on the quality of the journeys you have to make. At the end of the day, we cannot ignore the fact that the destination will come and you have to alight from the train and carry on chasing the purpose of your journey. Nothing is really more important than you, your journey or your purpose.
Enjoy your journeys, chase your purposes with passion and learn to exhilarate while having great experiences and ignore any meaningless temporary toxicity of any other passenger. You are the owner of your feelings. You are the owner of your mind. Let the mind not dictate to you what you ought to feel or not… As you saw through the window, it’s a very large expanse of universe that we are living in and there are so many places we do not know of or so many people and dialects and nature that we aren’t yet exposed to. What is for sure is that if this journey wasn’t up to the mark, the next one will be. Hope and opportunity are actually infinitely provided by the infinite source. Choose to own your experiences, journeys and destinations.