All it Took were a Few Seconds!

Street Vendor

“What a dumb! The moment I leave this job, I’m going to punch him in the face. *#&#*@#*#*!” I was fuming & abusing after coming out of my boss’ cabin. I dreaded the mere thought of going to meet him as I knew the moment I stepped out after what he calls a ‘discussion to review the strategic process’ I would be in a ‘kill him’ mindset. Like a lot of people today I wasn’t happy with either my job or my boss. I wanted to quit my job.
“What happened?” my colleague asked.
“The same old stuff yaar. He has given me loads of work for which he is going to take the entire credit. The idiot wants me to work over the weekend and complete it by Monday morning. He surely knows how to spoil someone’s mood on a Friday evening!”
My colleague shrugged “Well..that’s him!”
Normally I leave late on Fridays but today I was in no mood to stay back. I packed my bag and left the office sulking.

I hailed an auto and sat back waiting for my 20 mins ride to my house to get over. The autodriver took a different route today since the road I normally take was dug up for some work. My auto stopped at the traffic signal. Don’t know how but I suddenly turned my attention to the left. There was this old man selling items on the footpath. He seemed to have negotiated a deal with a customer who was paying him the money. Something struck me about the way the vendor was dealing with the money in his hand. He was trying to get a feel of the paper. Upon carefully observing I noticed that the vendor was vision impaired.
My driver noticed what I was looking at and said “arey bichara andha hai.. hamare hi chawl mein rehta hai… ek beta tha jo chhodke chalagaya.. ab yahan baith ke kuchh paise kama leta hai… iska bajuwala isko iddhar subah chhodke jata hai aur shaamko waapas lene aata hai” (Translation- that guy is vision impaired. He stays in the same chawl as I do. He had a son who left him. Now he sells his stuff here for earning a few rupees. His neighbor brings him here in the morning and again takes him back in the evening.)
Upon hearing these words, the anger that was consuming my mind melted away. What instead took its place were a mixture of emotion- pity & sadness for the old man, anger for his son for deserting his father, surprise that he sells despite not knowing if his customer would cheat him.
That particular moment changed my life forever. I thought if this old man could work so could I. Sure we all have our share of not so perfect things, but the trick is in focusing on the things that you could be thankful for.
Sure my boss doesn’t treat me right and I hate my work. But that’s no reason for me being unhappy all the time or for not giving my 100% at work or for complaining. That night I made a list of all the things I should be grateful for, I created a vision of how my life would be going ahead, what steps I needed to take to achieve the same and set upon doing the same. In a year’s time, I changed my job- this time a place where I was happier with the work.
All this was possible because of the different route that the rickshaw driver had taken on that eventful day. At times, that’s what we need in life when we are going through our lows-a different route, a different approach!
My attitude towards life changed for the better and “all it took were a few seconds”.
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