The sky has opened and the rains patter against the window inviting me to leave the workplace and its gadgets and celebrate nature’s bounty. Beauty is just a window pane away.
A gentle breeze accompanies the rain, playing a soulful melody. The melody is nature’s; the stories it sets off in people’s minds are their own. This gentleman here remembers a carefree youth and an enchanted evening dancing in the rain, the lady there – she remembers a homecoming and the bitter-sweet memory of a dinner with her parents for the last time. Me, I remember blissful evenings on an open balcony armed with a cup of coffee and a good book in my hand. The book provides the stories, the cuppa provides the warmth and nature sets the ambience. A perfect world this – halfway between a man-made heaven and nature’s abundance – a dream to cherish forever.
But the workplace has its needs – and its charms too. Your office on the 10th floor allows provides a breathtaking view of nature at play – albeit as a spectator. The coffee is there and a hot buttered croissant too. There’s an ambitious “to-do” list peeking from the table that you can’t wait to get started on. A friend on the communicator is asking you how the day was. A twitter feed describing a mesmerizing, far-away world precisely in 140 characters hovers perched on some distant cloud. A loved project is just going live. If work is love made visible as Kahlil Gibran said, this is it!
Which brings us to the moment. Rains are special. But more so is our relationship with the rains. A thunderstorm can be frightening; or it can be mesmerising – a lot depends on our views (and the efficiency of the lightning conductors of course!). A task can be daunting or inspiring depending on the perceiver. So it’s in our hands.
But not entirely. The rains come of their accord, not to a timetable. If you miss them tonight, there’s no telling when a repeat performance is up next for you to participate. A task or a meeting – can be manoeuvred with greater flexibility – mostly! Nature presents her gifts majestically but for fleeting moments; Man-made tasks are mostly there for longer terms, yet are less in splendor.
Miss a moment of magic, and its gone forever. Consistently miss out on a work task, and success (in society’s terms) is elusive.
How do we achieve the right balance? I guess the answer is not in what we do, but what we choose not to do. Knock off enough things (but not the most important ones), and there’s always time to fit in Nature’s songs in your life. And doing so will get your soul to sing; and what could be a precious thing for man?
After twenty years of playing IT leadership roles, I am taking some time off to read, reflect, and share thoughts on Leadership and Technology. I am specifically interested in how we can use these to further our success. You can find my work at https://nsubra.com and 2-minute daily posts at https://angulam.in