So, my friend who happens to be a computer engineer by education, a musician by passion took a plunge into the field of liberal arts because he wanted to ‘explore his interests’ further, before a boring 9-5 coding job took him down. In fact, he resigned from a comfortable, well paying job with a coveted banking company only because he thought it wasn’t ‘gratifying enough’. This is a very dear friend of mine, and kudos to him to have taken a step that required of him to step out of the bounds of what, according to the societal standards, was a comfort zone.
There is a constant battle, with most of the people around me, except for that quintessential lot who had it all figured since forever. It’s still hard for me to understand if they really have everything figured or did they have to kill a part of themselves and ‘pretend’ like they have it all figured. Unfortunately, I can’t relate to them because I am not one among them. How our generation is in a lifelong dilemma to follow their passions and still lead a life of luxury. So the ‘generation’ I’m talking about excludes this lot; people who live a life of luxury, and still follow their passions.
Because everyone has a different definition for luxury, there is actually no absolute way to describe this, just perspectives. Somebody who has faced a lot of family problems as a kid, like abusive parent, illiteracy or unrelenting financial stresses, and overcomes such horrors with perseverance and self-belief might define a comfortable job and a happy family life as luxury. There are people who, unfortunately aren’t privileged enough to understand how beautifully variegated ‘passions’ in life can be; who never get a chance to join a dance class, or learn swimming after school. People who have seen their parents work hard to make ends meet and who, since very young age are exposed to the harsh realities of life. They devote their lives to breaking the vicious cycle of muddling through and strive hard to change their lives. These people make ‘building a life of luxury’ their passions.
Today we live in the era of ever-growing startup culture. We hear stories of college dropouts who build companies valued at multi-million dollars, of investment bankers who leave their jobs to run restaurants, or of common people who are just not satisfied with their professions and want to do something more fulfilling. They are either aware of what their passions are, or at least what they aren’t. These people hustle with grit towards following their passions, or towards finding their passions, until it makes their lives filled with luxuries. Take the example of Manish Malhotra, the famous Designer who has redefined the Indian Fashion Industry, has no formal training in Fashion. From a very young age, he was fond of styling and sketching, which made him begin his career as a costume stylist. He accumulated experience, never looked back, and today not only his life, but also his brand is luxurious. Such people face a lot of criticism for taking the road less traveled by, and that makes all the difference.
What if luxuries don’t really matter? What if passion is all that drives you? We have travelers, people who leave their highly paying jobs and invest their life savings in traveling all across the world, hiking through difficult terrains, facing life threatening challenges at every step. What if owning a jet plane isn’t as exciting as jumping off one when it is mid-air?
As I complete writing my article with a sense of fulfillment and a powerful realization that what if…what if happiness becomes a luxury in this chaotic life? What if it has become a luxury? What if then, the only way to lead a luxurious life is to chase and hold on to what you really feel passionate about? So… what do you really feel passionate about?