Happy Seventh Birthday, Magic Bull ! 

Are you happy? 

What makes you happy?

Have you discovered that? 

Do you do what you’ve discovered? 

Do you try and stay happy? 

Writing makes me happy. 

Everything else goes into the background. 

Words remain.

They will remain beyond me. 

They are powerful. 

Writing has a meaning. 

It organizes thoughts. 

It elucidates concepts. 

It helps those in need. 

It breaks paths. 

It sets standards. 

Sure, I do other meaningful things with my life. 

Writing is right up there at the front of those meaningful things. 

Happy seventh birthday, Magic Bull ! 

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Small Shoots to Big Trees

What do I see around myself?

Lots of small shoots. 

Wherever I look, there are small shoots. 

Does this make me happy?

You bet. 

Why?

Why not?

I mean, you don’t see any trees. 

So?

You’ve been at it for a while.

So?

All you’re seeing is shoots. Does that satisfy you? None of your efforts is a big tree in all this while.

That’s a very narrow-minded, greedy and fast-buck remark. 

Explain. 

For each of the shoots I see around me, twenty efforts have died their death. However, one shoot managed to entrench itself. This one shoot is firm, and goes very deep into the ground. It’s roots have become very strong. It is now ready for the world and has decided to show itself over the ground.  Over the next many, many years, with my meticulous nurturing, this very shoot shall grow up into a mammoth tree with unprecedented positive consequences.

I see. And, you’re saying that you see many such shoots around yourself?

Yes, many many.

Wow.

Yeah, i’ve been busy. I’ve tried and discarded many things. What remained didn’t want to leave me. It got planted and grew roots. Now that the shoots are growing, they are mostly on auto-pilot. Some need tending to once a day, some once a week.

Does that give you empty spaces in between?

Yes.

How do you fill these empty spaces?

I do, and I don’t.

Meaning?

Unless something new refuses to leave me, I don’t wish to plant another tree.

Why?

I’m happy enough tending to what I have.

So you’ve reached the…what’s that called?

Sweet spot?

Yes, you’ve reached the sweet spot. But nobody knows about you. You’re not famous or anything.

That’s why the spot is sweet.

Meaning?

Nobody disturbs my privacy. I can go where I choose. Do what I want. I don’t need to share my time with anyone if I don’t want to. There are no compulsions imposed upon me. 

Do you think you will be famous one day?

When these shoots grow into big trees, that might happen.

Do you want it to happen?

I want my trees to grow. Not sure today about fame. It kills personal life. I like my life and its pace.

Any regrets?

Sometimes, I get lonely. It’s the nature of the path. Despite family and a decent social life, loneliness is still there. Applied finance requires a lot of alone-time. 

How do you deal with that?

I start tending to a different shoot. Financial. Non-financial. Recreational. Creative. Gap gets bridged, and then the loneliness is gone. 

Incorporating the Satisfaction Factor 

How do you wish to leave your portfolio? 

Leave as in… 

… you leave. 

Let’s paraphrase this. 

In what condition do you envision your folio to be at your time of ultimate departure? 

Why is this question necessary? 

Why are we putting together our folios? 

What do we want out of the whole shebang? 

Are we playing the game just because everyone else is doing so, without thinking any further? 

Stop. 

Think. 

Do. 

We want satisfaction. 

Everyone searches for happiness. 

We want to have led full lives. 

We want to leave with smoothly outlined pipelines which won’t be blocked by any surviving party’s antics. 

Auto-pipelines are a reality now. It takes a standing instruction, that’s it. 

We want to have done some CSR work, as in charity. 

We want to leave a legacy. 

We don’t wish to make our surviving family slaves to an inheritance. We want them to be self-sufficient with trouble-shooting acumen. However, funds need to be accessible at times of emergency. 

And blah blah blah blah blah…, list can be endless. However, you get the gist. 

All this requires planning… 

… NOW.

Take out the time to do some basics. 

Nobody’s asking you to do a doctorate on this. 

Just do the basic nitty-gritty. 

The whole with some basics leads to successful and satisfactory implementation. Leave out the nitty-gritty, and you could be left without the success and satisfaction part too. 

Do it properly, come on. 

🙂 

What to do with constant hunger? 

Hmmm… 

Is it a healthy state of being? 

No. 

What does it do for you? 

Gets you right up there. 

What’s the problem? 

You’re still hungry. 

Never satisfied. 

After three victories in a day, a miniscule here or there in a market-situation gets you down. 

Deplorable? 

Yes and no. 

You’re at peak-performance. 

That’s the good thing about constant hunger. 

However, you’re not happy. Yeah, still not happy. You want more, and more, and more. You don’t know where to stop. You’ve forgotten about happiness. 

Don’t get me wrong. 

Keep your hunger. 

Strive. 

Harder, higher. 

Then, celebrate a victory. 

Be in that space for a while. 

Forget about tomorrow for a while. 

Be happy for a while. 

Next time, be happy for a while longer. 

And even longer. 

Till it becomes a habit. 

It’s been twelve years in the marketplace. I have to keep reminding myself of this chronology every day.

The most basic things in life are also the most difficult to win back. 

We were born in a state of bliss. We were oblivious to almost everything. We were happy. We need to win that happiness back. 

There will always be a new target. 

The one just achieved deserves a happy adieu. 

🙂