Sunday, December 21, 2014

Just a moment...

There will be a time in your life, when you realise that a year isn't as long as it used to be when you were younger. A day will be sometimes longer than a year and at some crucial turning points in your life - a moment will seem like eternity.
Then on other days you'll look back at all the years gone by and feel that they've all vanished in a rush - the syndrome the world suffers from :)

On other days when you have the time to sip your hot cup of chai or actually smell the coffee from your cup - you'll muse at the banality of it all.

You'll think of faces and voices who were a part of everyday life while growing up and are now just Facebook profiles on your ever growing friend list, profiles that you visit to just keep in touch with your own fading memories and not really those people.

You'll come to realise the importance of context and in the same breath understand the importance of the freedom from it at times - these are the times you'll take off on journeys of discovering the unexplored...

And as the years pass, you'll realise that you never remember the year - just some special moments from all the years gone by and even then you will not take the time from your rushed life to create more special moments - the ones which defined your past - the ones which will define your future - the only ones you'll remember when many more years have passed...

Sanchita Johri

Welcome Home!

Home will never be a place like we drew in art class,
It will usually never have mountains behind it, a white fence around it and a rainbow above it...
Sometimes it may not even have a door or roof,

For sometimes home is a person, sometimes it's a warm meal served with love and sometimes it just a quiet place which makes you feel at ease.

Home isn't and should never be a place you need to be a certain way or not be a certain way, it's a place where you can just be...
As a home is not a house, just like love is not a set of rules, family isn't by blood and warmth isn't something that surrounds fireplaces in the biggest of mansions...

So go where the heart is warmed, not by the food or the gifts or the lack of them - but warmed genuinely by the care, the concern and the feeling of belonging - not a fleeting one- but one that remains long after you've left it behind.

For sometimes life is spent in not acknowledging truths we've known and that in short is called a life wasted :) So while you invest in a house don't forget to build homes along the way for those are the only ones that truly protect you from inclement weather :)

Sanchita Johri

The Best Gift!

Time is the most valuable commodity! Spend it wisely - spend it with those who lift you up, spend it where you find happiness and spend it living your life. 
For before you know it - it will be wasted on people, situations and places you don't need to dwell on. It's a gift - one that you give others but most importantly give to yourself. 
Leave behind toxic residue, let it be eroded with the winds of time and let the winds power your ship to set sail in only one direction - the one which makes you happy - with whatever and whoever makes life happy :) 

Don't follow the rule book, someone else wrote it - you'll waste time navigating the maze. For those who preach, do not practice and life is too short to waste on cameos, so be the protagonist - set sail - live it up - your journey is your own :)

Sanchita Johri

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Phone Call Away

A Phone Call Away (dedicated to all our loved ones in heaven)

Sometimes I see you in the morning mist,
Sometimes I see you waiting in the shadows of the night.

I hear the echo of your laughter blending into the rays of the early morning sun,
I've also felt your hugs wrapped in gusts of winds during the storms.

It's funny how you were real when my eyes were wide open and now it's just the same, when they are closed.

I sometimes wonder if what we chase  are called dreams,
Then what about you? You're not here anymore, the dreams will always be incomplete...

It's almost like fluid, a bubble in a bath tub or just a whirlpool at times, life you know - it keeps changing pace.

While I know if you were still here, you'd probably be just a phone call away and I wouldn't call you as much,
We all have the immortal excuse of a busy life...but now that you aren't and never will be I promise you I'd have called you everyday.

Sometimes just about a great meal, a funny movie or just nothing at all,
I would have told you so much or even if I didn't you'd know.

I walk around in this busy world, trying to keep pace with the humdrum, and occasionally I hear a knock and still wish it was you.

Then I resume whatever I was doing, trying to either focus on what I want or maybe away from what I've lost...

I wonder why you were in such a hurry to leave this world, but then I look around and see that's the word which defines us - everyone's in a hurry to get somewhere.

So I will wake and I will sleep and live to the fullest,
In the hope of being united at the end of this life in a world where nobody is just a phone call away...anymore.

Till we meet again...

Sanchita Johri

Saturday, April 26, 2014

A Blinkered Life!

You wouldn't know till I told you,
All the tales of the lands that hold you.

You wouldn't set sail, till you're old and pale,
For right now other things matter on the success scale.

It isn't about exotic destinations galore,
Those you've been to I'm sure.

It's about taking the time to explore,
The neighbourhood, the outskirts, the hidden village near the shore.

For when life's calling makes you leave the city,
You'll remember the roads, the shops, the monuments - a pity!

So take the time to take a quiet walk,
Drive out to the fort or sit near the rock.

You may discover a travellers soul respond,
The magic of the mundane, and a freedom which you had pawned.

Sanchita Johri

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Eat that Cake!

It's really okay to worry about how you look, to try and look better and it's also okay not to worry at all. As long as you're happy worrying about it or not worrying  about it - it's okay.

The real worry is when you start worrying because of someone else, because of what they say or how they expect you to look. If someone makes you feel bad - That is not okay. 

You should be concerned about being healthy and fit, but the photoshopped picture perfect looks, let's leave that for the Kingfisher Calendar girls :)

Find yourself someone who loves you with all your imperfections and right out of bed disheveled looks because your life is not a soap opera and we will all wake up from this Instagram world looking like crap and not like our profile pictures.

While I constantly worry about if I look fat, fatter or just not my best - I worry because I know I can do better :) If I worried because someone said that I'm looking fatter/not my best then I'd make sure I'd lose and feel lighter. I would lose them from my life ;)  The well-wishers who are superficial enough to focus only on what's wrong with you instead of all the things that are right with you :)

So eat that chocolate cake, cause life is not a ramp walk. Don't eat all of it, all the time and get unfit, but eat some. Let not life lose it's sweetness because you're not auditioning for the movies.

So be a foodie, be healthy and lose everything that affects your smile adversely :)

So here's a big hug to all my loved ones and yours who love us for things beyond what all the cake eating has done to us.

P.S. I hope I'm not looking fat in my profile picture, if I am I'll just get myself clicked from another angle because I will not and cannot give up eating hot chocolate fudge :)

Yes I am aware of a word called exercise - so while you're building the body, don't forget to build the mind but more importantly don't forget to let your heart beat ;)

Sanchita Johri

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Here's why you don't need a Break :)



Yes I know that you do not have anytime to take a break. Guess what? That's the whole idea - it's called a break for a reason :) Take it and you don't even need to take any leave from work if you live in Delhi/NCR. This is a long weekend break which feels like a complete holiday - Holi weekend well spent :)


It's about 40 kilometers ahead of Gurgaon just off Sohna road and a convenient drive on a Saturday afternoon. The tail end of the drive is quite picturesque and you would hardly feel you're anywhere near the concrete jungle of the city as you pass the lush green fields on either side of the road. While the road can be a tad bit bumpy in places, it's mostly a smooth drive to the beautiful   Westin Sohna Resort & Spa.

The check in time is 3 pm, so would recommend you time your arrival accordingly to avoid the wait at the reception before you're given your room. Reservations for rooms can be easily made over the phone at 0124 - 45508888 or directly online.

The resort has different categories of rooms, including villas and a presidential suite though the premier rooms are great too and very comfortable for two. You could choose between a king size bed if you're a couple or twin beds if you're just friends ;) The tariff includes breakfast and one major meal for two and works well as the spread is great and the taste of the food is good too.


The red brick cottages and villas nestled amidst the tall trees and vast expanses of green make you feel like your holiday has begun before you even enter your room.

Spacious bathrooms, clean linen and courteous staff only add to the experience and if you are looking at really calming your nerves you must try meditating in their meditation pyramid at the Spa. The Spa is one of the nicer ones I've been to and has a range of services. While I chose the Ayurvedic treatment called Podi Khizi which uses Herbal Potlis and hot oils for an hour long massage, you could even opt for the Thai or Balinese massages on offer. The treatment is followed by a relaxing shower, steam, sauna and use of the jacuzzi - all built in a large open space but also very private. Apart from the relaxing treatment I also loved the honey infused jasmine tea served to me post the pampering.

The rest of the day you can relax in a hammock or go for a swim in either the public pool or to the adults only pool. The latter is near the gymnasium and has a more tranquil air about it than the larger pool at the resort.

I spent my day walking around the green lawns admiring the fresh fruit trees and listening to the sounds of the nature around me and before you know it - it's time for dinner, which is served at the largest of the three restaurants the resort houses.

From the soups, to salads to the barbecue to the main course it's all quite sumptuous and the desert spread more tempting than I'd have liked it to be. It's indulgence time for the foodie and I really could write a whole lot more just about the gastronomic delights, but maybe another time :)

The resort offers a host of activities which include horse riding, cycling, paragliding, tennis, pool and others that you could get busy with the next day or you could just find an empty swing under one of the trees near your cottage and sway to the sound of the pristine silence broken occasionally by the sounds of chirping birds or footsteps rustling some fallen leaves.

A relaxing tub bath and a sound sleep  post a long walk or just some quality time with loved ones is really a great way to end your Sunday stay before you check out at noon the next day or earlier if you're going to work directly.

Make sure that when you check out, you make some time to catch a cup of coffee or some masala chai at the Damdama Lake which is just a little ahead of the resort and a great place for an hour or two. This is a place I'd recommend only as an addition to your itinerary.

We never have the time to take a break, but we'll never have time to be this age again either. Today you're too busy, tomorrow you'll be too old.

Do what you love and then go back to being busy. As Robert Frost had said - In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life - It goes on.

Sanchita Johri


Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Mirror Image

Be with someone who makes you smile,Makes it last for a while.

Someone who understands your fears,Makes room for silly tears.

Be with someone who is busy but never enough to ignore -
You at your worst and when you're being a downright bore.

Someone who isn't perfect, but tries to be,Even if that means it would take eternity.

Someone who'd let you be at times when you just want to be,Yet look out for you from the corner of their eye, you see.

Someone who is a lover, but more importantly a friend,It's the secret ingredient to dealing with the road and it's every bend.

The best would be to be that someone - to someone you love,It's a two way street every word above :)

Sanchita Johri

Monday, December 30, 2013

Life Notes :)



So as I bid farewell to the year 2013 – I’d like to cherish the great moments and leave behind the not so happy ones albeit not the lessons that came with them.
While I never draw up New Year resolutions, I thought this year let me pen down thoughts that sum up what this year has either taught or reinforced through the various experiences it brought me:

Here are some of the things:

1.       Not all movement is progress. Sometimes the good, old boring life maybe questioned by several around you – it makes you want to try something new. Here’s the thing though – it’s important to figure out if YOU really want the change – it could be anything – a new hairstyle, a new job, a relationship or even a new drink. The most important is for you to be happy. Do something because it makes you happy, not because it’s the expected/anticipated or cool thing to do. Most importantly do nothing that corrodes your peace of mind :)
 

2.       There is nothing in this world that will replace the solid relationships and friendships which have been inculcated over the years. Not the newness, not the excitement nor the crazy amount of adventure – these are important but will never be as real as the ones which have lasted the test of time.


3.       Trust actions and not words. This has been my biggest learning or should I say a learning which has been corroborated by the experiences this year. Like they say people may not always tell you how they feel, but they always show you! This has been my year of trusting too quickly and burning my fingers – but it’s been worth the learning I guess.


4.       I’ve also learnt that it’s important to rely on your own instincts about people and other big decisions that impact your life directly. You can seek all the opinions and advice from all and sundry but they will only tell you what they know from either what you’ve shared with them or based on their own limited perspective. It’s important to listen to everyone but not at the cost of your own inner voice. It knows – it always does – trust your gut!


5.       I don’t like that man, I must get to know him better said Abraham Lincoln a long time ago – this is what I believed in but here’s a caveat that this quote should come with – there’s no smoke without fire! What I mean by that is don’t believe everything you hear but if you do hear something – verify it from trusted sources – before testing the waters with both your feet!


6.       Life isn’t about tick-marks – it’s about your story! You’re the author, make it your best. While there’s a time and age for everything – there’s also something called not just doing something because everyone else is doing it. From the unfortunate experience of a couple of my really awesome friends I’ve learnt that it isn’t about doing something at the right age – it’s about being happy about doing it any age. Do something-anything -  when you’re ready for it – simply put – happy about doing it. No guarantee that this would work out – but don’t give in to the accelerated time lapse syndrome.


7.       The list of other people’s expectations is endless – it will never end – no matter what age you’re at. When you’re 60 they’ll tell you – you need to retire – whether you want to or not. As Robert Downey Jr. has so aptly said— 'Listen, smile, agree, and then do whatever the fuck you were gonna do anyway.'
 

8.       The last and most important – Don’t forget to throw your head back and laugh. Think about it – it’s another year gone by – you got through it – good, bad, ugly – it’s just another year – the more important one is the one yet to  come :)
 
      Like they say – Life is a tragedy for those who feel and a comedy for those who think! Have a fabulous 2014!

Sanchita Johri – 30/12/2013




Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The Story of the Protagonist

It's my path,
I choose,
I rise,
I fall,
I stumble,
Rise,
Stand tall.

It's my path,
I choose,
Victory-happiness-success,
Roadblocks, dead-ends - I loose.

It's my path,
I choose,
The wins are mine,
The losses too,
It's my story,
The protagonist - me,
The experience to just be.

I'd walk your path,
The tried and tested one,
I'd not be me,
I'd live life the way it should be,
But then I'd be for life and not it for me...

Sanchita Johri

Friday, November 22, 2013

Would you care to Dance?


There could be a quiet, an absolute pristine stillness around,
Yet if you look hard enough and deep within - a storm could be found.

So accustomed to the stormy sea, oblivious of another reality.
An existence could be breathing, surviving, smiling and yet not be alive,
In the  incubator of a masquerade it would dance and thrive.

A cyclone stronger than the pent up storm would unleash a world unexplored,
Wrapped up, packed away emotions would then erupt and explode.

The newness of it all would dazzle so bright and the music would be playing so loud,
The Tango, the jazz and dizziness from all the dances - would everything cloud.

The music would eventually peter out, the dancers would tire too,
They'd look down at their sore feet and their pounding hearts now feel a little blue.

Their gaze would dart across the room, in search of a stronger storm zone,
It would be the opium to recover from the aftermath of the last  cyclone.

The pairs of feet would go round the floor in trance again, trying to keep pace,
Some would find the dizzy harmony, some would give up the space.

Some would retract, excuse themselves and pause,
Reflect on the dependence on the storm, it's intrinsic cause.

They'd stand and observe the others - the victims and accomplices of the storm,
See their own reflections too, and decide to get back into form.

They'd shut the gates of the frenzied dancers room,
Lightning,thunder, downpours and leave the black clouds to loom.

They'd walk out, look up at the skies and also deep within,
Choose in silence - a peace, a quiet - a happiness - a win.

The skies would clear, the storms would be long gone,
It would be a peaceful stark honest new dawn.

You could use many a storm as a merry-go-round,
Yet they'd always be just an amusement park, a playground.

You will have to set sail for home one day, as your wisdom would grow
Be honest to yourself, listen to your heart - it would always know.

Sanchita Johri

Monday, July 15, 2013

Overcast




I thought I saw your shadow near the window the other day. I always hated the night, but now I’m not so sure. It made me see in the dark what I hadn’t been able to see in years.

Then I thought about the years, the ones gone by. The moments which had created the memories which defined us, now seemed like a floating apparition.

It seemed like Time stood with his arms folded with a mocking smirk on its face gloating about a past which neither of us could undo nor experience again.

I stared a bit longer, hoping that the shadow would either knock on the window or stop lurking around. I knew neither was possible - for you wouldn’t let it knock and I wouldn’t set it free from lurking.

So we co-existed in a world which was half lit and half dark hoping that one day one of us would give up on the world of silhouettes…


Sanchita Johri

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Rail Tale: McLeodganj

Just about time when you say Good night, you could actually hop on to a train called Jamu Tawi which leaves from Old Delhi Railway station and reaches Chakki Bank by the time it's time to say Good morning. From Chakki Bank to McLeodganj is a two and a half hour drive and cabs are easily available. The other option you could look at is Dhauladhar Express till Pathankot, it takes about the same time. The latter is extremely comfortable, especially the first ac coupes and starts from Pathankot at 10:45 pm and reaches Old Delhi at 7:50 am for your return journey.


While there are more hotels in McLeodganj than things to do, I’d recommend Chonor House (book in advance – two months atleast) or look up a hotel at Naddi Point. The other options you may want to consider are available on the the Himachal Pradesh Tourism website.

There are several cafes and little eating places in McLeodganj and before you sit down to eat you could start your day with a visit to The Dalai Lama Temple, followed by The Bhagsu Nag Temple and Church of St. John post your meal.

You could spend the rest of the day walking around the market, exploring cafes and just relaxing. If you like adventure, this is the place – from trekking to paragliding, they’ve got it all – the tourism office is on the road to The Bhagsu and you could get all the information you need.

As luck would have it in the short trip, the second day was a rainy one. I had planned to go to Palampur, an hour’s drive from McLeodganj. It’s a must-do drive and extremely picturesque. I began by going to Norbulingka Institute and absolutely loved it. It’s a little bit of Tibet in Himachal.
You might want to stop at the Chamunda Devi Temple on the way or even say hello to the animals at Gopalpur Zoo if you can squeeze it into your itinerary. The cricket stadium – HPCA should definitely be on it.


Palampur is really as green as it gets and I quite enjoyed the landscape of the mountains and the tea gardens. The masala chai at Neugal Café was heavenly, I think more so because of the rain outside it’s glass walls. You would also want to stop by the Church of St. John in Palampur. The drive back was beautiful, with the sun setting and the sky changing colour, there are few other things that make the soul smile.

An essential place to visit is Naddi Point with it breathtaking views and beautiful surroundings. On the way up to Naddi Point you would see the Dal Lake, which to my mind is best seen from a distance.
Naddi Point, however with it’s snow clad mountains hiding behind the greenery and the sunshine adding to the hues of the landscape –is surreal.

The next day was spent lazing in the sun, reading a book and going to Tibet Kitchen, Jimmy’s Italian and McLlo, while there are several other places and I’m a foodie, maybe exploring them could be a part of my next trip to the Unforgettable Himachal.

Sanchita Johri


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Ocean in You!


The earth is no longer solid ground. What I mean by that is that nothing today is concrete. It is all in a state of constant evolution and since our environment is in a state which doesn’t believe that change is inevitable but looks at is as the very basis of survival, it’s time to break the mould and learn to swim.



So it’s no longer about standing strong, but being flexible. It isn’t about knowing but about learning. It isn’t about the hour but the nano second.

This Winter breeze has come as a messenger to wake many a sleeping man about the Winds of Change.



There must be a reason that sixty percent of our bodies are made up of water. Water which exists in all three states – depending on the temperature it is exposed to, however it retains its basic goodness. There is no form so defined that it cannot evolve, yet change is unnerving to and unwelcome by many.



The vastness of the Ocean has the same effect on several people however one of my favourite places and most peaceful moments is sitting by the ocean. It’s interesting to listen to the sound of the waves – the persistence of the ocean despite the change in tides. The ocean deals with constant change and yet also with the monotony of the mundane, however I haven’t heard of a day where it gave up it’s battle with either the former or the latter.



While it’s important to hold your ground, sometimes it’s important to learn to swim and as the wise men say that there are times in life we must stop swimming and just float…



Life like water is a compound of elements of change.



Sanchita Johri

Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Eternal Swayamvar


Swayamvara (Sanskrit: स्वयं‍वर), in ancient India, was a practice of choosing a husband, from among a list of suitors, by a girl of marriageable age. Swayam in Sanskrit means self and vara means choice or desire (which also synonymous with bride-groom). - Source - Wikipedia.

This however isn't really about marriage at all - however in a way it is. If you're confused, then think about the bride-to-be who has to choose between so many suitors! Now that you've thought about her plight think about the suitors and their situation too. What a high pressure situation to be in!

However let's deal with the pressure together. Let's begin with the suitors. If you were one of them, assuming you did like the girl and wanted her to choose you over the others - what is it that you must do?

Here's something that Will Smith said in one of my favouite movies called Hitch - "One dance, one look, one kiss, that's all we get, Albert. Just *one shot* to make the difference between happily-ever-after, and oh-he's-just-some-guy-I-went-to-some-thing-with-once."

Hitch is a love comedy about dating and relationships however there's some serious gyaan in the movie too. Think about it, better still watch it.

If you haven't seen the movie I'd recommend that you do and here's why - this is the story that actually speaks about reaching out to the heart and mind of the person to win the battle against competition. If you win that war of love, then no matter how many battles your competition wins - they will always come in second.

This is just like the story of the crowded market place, buzzing with choices and here's your brand trying to out-shout them to your target audience saying -Choose Me!

So now the bride in the swayamvar, in this case your target audience will ask you - Why?

Till you have a story to tell, a message, an offer that appeals to her heart and mind, you are going to be just another suitor and in this case just  another commodity.

However if your story/message/promise/benefit strikes the right chord in her heart and mind space - she is already rendered deaf to the pleas of the line behind you.

It is however important to remember that unlike a suitor who wins once, as a brand you will always be in the courtship period. The stages may vary and so may the effort however you have to consistently perform and deliver on the promises made. To my mind consistency and delivering on expectations once built is key to the long-term branding story.

Speaking of stories, it is critical for a story-teller to know his listener. So the story can never be told in vaccuum, it has to take into account the interests, likes and dislikes and other nuances that may help influence the listener. Influence and impact will only be real when the story stays in the corners of either the heart or mind. Get to know her ;-). As David Ogilvy said - "The consumer is not a moron, she is your wife."

Another thing that will help your proposal is if other people in her circle of caring narrate your story to her as well, we usually call them Brand Evangelists.

The ideal would be to change the game - hopefully from the suitor to becoming the sought after :-)


You've got a story? We've got a plan.

May the Best Brand win!

Sanchita Johri

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Trespassing...


I dreamt last night of the house that we had grown up in. My mind had wandered through the roads and the lanes that lead to the address we once called home.

It still stood there in all its glory but the halo had changed. I could still hear the rustling of my grandmother’s sari as she lovingly watered the plants in the garden waiting for my grandfather to come home from golf with his friends.

I could still see the faded shadows of our gang of friends running in the drive way excited about the game of cricket in the park.

It was all a long time ago...

The ladies who cooked our meals and the others who helped my grandmother with the work around the house weren’t there either, but their daily dose of gossip and chatter still filled the air.

I wandered into the house without knocking fully aware that it wouldn’t be the same from within, however since it was a dream – it will always be just as we left it.

The mango tree in the backyard seemed to recognize me like an older person who acknowledges your childhood through the love in their eyes. It was almost like all of us who lived there at one time had left a bit of our souls in it.

I stood for awhile in front of the gate, recalling the times I waited for my father to drive home from work in his Red Beetle and then I looked at the name plate.

It had an unfamiliar name. We had all moved on with our lives. Some of us beyond this life and the rest of us beyond the house...

Sanchita Johri

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Story of Time...

What brand is the watch you're wearing? No, really? Which one is it?
I hope you're happy with it. Yes I know that you want the one you saw at the duty free counter, and I also know you're delaying buying it because you have other priorities.

What I really want to know is how much time will you delay it for? Look at the watch you're wearing right now, see the time - think about it.

On the other hand you may not even care which brand it is and for that matter you may not even wear one. I do know one thing however that for time to tick, the watch isn't required at all.

If you're happy with what you have, then that's great at one level - the eternal one, however if you're not - then what are you waiting for?

It's your watch you know. The only person who uses it to tell time is you. Time is telling you something - take the time to listen.

You are the protagonist - change the story :-)

Sanchita Johri

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Great Expectations!

Well the problem with expectations is that all of us have them. There lies the dichotomy in the spiritually educated - materialistic man. Time and again we have heard about the consequences of harboring expectations and yet few of us are blessed with their absence. Charles Dickens introduced us to Pip’s story and yet we follow in Pip’s footsteps which sometimes lead us to what we call disappointments.


So here’s a perspective on thwarted expectations a.k.a disappointments.


Are you more disappointed in someone because they are not what they seemed or are you more disappointed in yourself for going wrong again about your judgment about them?

It never really is about anyone else being responsible for letting us down. Nobody but you yourself can let you down.


Let me elaborate. So you expect honesty? Whom do you expect it from? Let’s begin with yourself. You can control that. Then of course from the people you trust. So if they ever let you down, you question them, actually you should question yourself for maybe your trust was misplaced. That is what is the real issue. We are usually disappointed not in other people but ourselves and our own judgment of having gone wrong - again.



It’s a vicious cycle of not accepting our failure of having placed our faith in someone who may not have deserved it. The other person may not have even influenced garnering your trust, you may have decided to give it to them basis your own judgment. Then they fail on delivering on your expectations that you had set up for yourself. So there begins a war inside you which blames everything on this other person/people who are responsible for letting you down. It usually is a very logical war with just one objective – self exoneration from blame.



They say there are always two reasons we justify things – the real reason and a good reason. The choice is ours – when we refuse to acknowledge we have made a mistake, we give up the power of correcting it.



Acknowledging a symptom, helps identifying a problem. It is the first step to solving it and therefore correcting a mistake – the next of course is forgiving yourself.



Here’s a quote I love: Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there – Rumi.


Life is waiting…

Sanchita Johri

Monday, July 2, 2012

Silent Gunshots

There is a corner somewhere in your heart that you keep dark on purpose. You had locked it's doors a long time ago. Now you neither look at it nor do you acknowledge remembering it's existence. I know it's there, just as much as you do and yet we pretend that none of us have it. It's easier that way.

It isn't that you have forgotten it's just easier not to remember and what you couldn't handle or face at that time, you don't ever want to dig up now.

It's all behind you, your eyes will never see that which you look away from...but your vision will still be colored.

The more we run away from that which we leave unresolved, the more time we give it in our hearts. The dark corner becomes like a hole with a missing bullet. The sound of the gunshot though muffled now resonates somewhere and the chasm grows deeper.

Not every heart will tell you it's story, but the invisible gunshots have played their part in moulding each one differently.

The next time you deal with someone do remember the ammunition you have been given to either propagate or reject a deadly war - the one that causes most damage - the one which happens through that which we say and that which we do!

Here's a quote I love - A careless word may kindle strife; a cruel word may wreck a life; a timely word may level stress; a loving word may heal and bless.

Sanchita Johri



Tuesday, June 19, 2012

What you don't know...

So I sat looking at the maze of cars on the road and thought about us.We who believe we know exactly what we want and where we are heading and when people who sound so sure of themselves believe in anything it sounds true.

We all seem to have a list of needs, wants, desires, expectations, goals,dreams (it's a list you know - it doesn't end). We all believe that we know exactly what we want,nothing less -nothing more. We have it all worked out just like niche marketing which thrives on the principle of we who know exactly what we want!

Well here's the problem, you see I'm a foodie (no that is not the problem) and as a food lover I went to a restaurant recently which had a very different menu and not anything that I would usually order. In fact I hadn't even heard of some of the stuff. So the usual reaction to unfamiliar territory is - Ok, let's go eat some place else. Well had I done that you would have been saved the ordeal of reading what comes next.
So there were some really exotic sounding names on the menu with some equally romantic descriptions of what the dish was ( not that it helped in any way! ) and I just had to choose some of the available things - none of which I wanted.
There came the three course meal and ofcourse a bill to match it. Let's face it you knew I was going to tell you I loved it and you're right.
Well apart from the calories that I gained, there's was something invaluable - a lesson that if you are going to draw up a list of what you want, need, desire and the works you will always be bonded within the territories of those benchmarks.

There are so many unexplored and undiscovered places, people, emotions, things and more that you will end up depriving yourself of.

If you have already decided on exactly what you want you may never know what your options were before you made the choice.

While exploring is limitless it doesn't mean you shouldn't set sail at all.

One of my favourite quotes - Ships are safe in harbour, but that's not what ships are built for - Shedds.
Sanchita Johri

Friday, May 11, 2012

A Ray of Hope!

He thought about it everyday. He wanted to pursue that dream for a long time. He knew he was made for bigger things but he also knew that he had responsibilites to take care of.

He'd wake up everyday and feel that this wasn't what he had dreamt of doing, not by the longest shot. It was almost like a golf ball lying in the bunker waiting for someone to come looking for it. There were a lot of people who believed in him, his abilities and his potential, but the problem was that he wasn't being able to count himself as one of those people anymore. His dream was still alive, however he wasn't sure he was.

Even those who supported him started shedding like leaves from a tree, slowly and steadily till the tree was bereft of all.

He however had never forgotten what his father had taught him - the power of the moment. He had told him the story of a boy who had no one in the world but himself. The boy too had a dream and the only thing he lacked was someone who looked out for him.

One day this boy sat weeping by the road side till a man walked upto him to ask him why he was sobbing. The boy said he was alone on his path and didn't see a ray of hope in his life.

The man turned to the boy and comforted him by wiping his tears and then said something magical - He said - My Son you may not see it, however the ray of hope sees you everyday. It is your companion. It's a gift to you from the Sun which rises everyday to see if you have had the courage to follow your dream and each day it sets to greet you afresh the next morning and see if you have made any progress.

Tomorrow is another day - It will rise again, the question is will you?

Sanchita Johri

Thursday, April 12, 2012

The Problem with Selling London, giving Tokyo!


Well yeah if you’ve grown up around here you’ve heard about the phrase looking London, talking Tokyo but I never really thought there was an issue with it in a world where everyone is expected to multi-task!

On a serious note when we mean something and say something completely different by design, it may help achieve short term objectives, however the long term damage may sometimes be catastrophic.

In a world where the opportunities are growing as are networks, the expansion is leading to the shrinking of the world – everyone knows everyone else and if you don’t - you soon will.

While everything is becoming fast paced and people are working 5 days a week to live for 2 days a week, the pressure demands something greater to emerge – TRUST.

The importance of trust is returning as the micro managers days are over. I would much rather work with someone whom I can rely on and someone who honours his or her word as we don’t have the time to chase work once it’s delegated. While this is an ideal situation, brands survive on this principle. It is a promise once made and the promise kept that adds credibility and reinforces the belief in a story that a brand/person wants to weave around itself.

It makes it easier for me to buy/hire a brand that time and again has delivered on it’s promise and not one that promises London and gives me Tokyo – though that may be an interesting twist – however not everyone has the appetite for surprises!

The one thing to remember while making a promise is that you are setting up an expectation. To avoid disappointment or dissonance - the most important thing to manage is expectations – as a brand or a person.

Sanchita Johri

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Glass is Broken!


The Glass is Broken

This is the posthumous story of the famous glass we have known for all our lives. The glass which was either half full or half empty.

While we all had an opinion about it and the debates about the pessimistic and optimistic view may continue for generations to come, the glass alas is no more.

In it's entire lifetime of just trying to be, I wonder if it succumbed to the pressure of always being judged! For a long time it waited for someone who understood it's plight to come along and just either empty it or fill it completely, but no one did, no one ever does!

So it continued being a silent spectator and a frustrated listener to the leagues of extraordinary gentlemen and women and their extraordinary theories about itself.

At first it was perturbed, then pretended not to care, then genuinely learnt not to care and finally it learnt to amuse itself with all that was being said with a Zen like beauty.

It existed, lived through it all and finally unaffected by the myriad of opinions - existed in peace.

The opinions- they still continue ;)

Sanchita Johri

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Keep the Change!

I found a note in my pocket today and was thrilled as I had not worn this pair of jeans in a long time. The only thing was that this was a five rupee note, one that had become rare in everyday circulation like a lot of other currency over the years.

It set me thinking about how something that is part of our everyday life can be rendered archaic or just evolves into an avatar which is better suited to the times. The new ten rupee coin being an example, I even know children whose piggy banks are full for the first time in their childhood owing to its sheer beauty.

While the reverence for the old note remains, the sheen of the new coin has it’s charm and even plastic money will soon have to bequeath it’s legacy to the all new mobile money – Times are changing, so are habits, people, rules, regulations and everything that is today needs to be better and brighter tomorrow.

We live in a dynamic world, so no matter what you’ve done and where you’ve been, irrespective of having lost or achieved yesterday –the one thing to remember today in Scarlet O’Hara’s words from Gone with the Wind is - After all…tomorrow is another day!

Sanchita Johri

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Not just a Pick up Line!

I know you from before - How many times have you met someone for the first time and felt that instant connection? I don't mean in a - I've got a crush on you - cheesy kind of way,but a genuine connection of the soul.

Vibes from a person or place can tell you a lot, that is if you take the time to feel them. There are some instances however where within the first few seconds you take a liking or dislike to someone rather inexplicably- they say your soul knows.I even read somewhere that the concept of speed dating actually capitalizes on this concept, in fact this is also mentioned in the book Blink by Malcolm Gladwell.

The point however is that while we may want a logical explanation for everything sometimes the illogical one is more interesting.

If you've read Many Lives, Many Masters by Dr. Brian Weiss you will relate much better to what I am saying.

The natural state of the soul is harmony they say and I have come to believe that it is true. I feel that loving comes much more naturally to human beings than hatred. I feel that hatred takes effort and so does dislike.

As a trainer with IBM, I dealt with several people and spoke about the concept of contamination related with transactional analysis and somewhere down the line realised that being judgemental stems from an insecurity of being in control. What I mean is that as children we didn't really think about casting aspersions on other people or even the way they lived their life, however as we grow older our instinct gets clouded by the list of do's and don'ts.

I realised I was convincing people more about acceptance of other people and cultures as everyone seemed to have an opinion about the life of everyone else! We were battling stereo types, preconceived notions and acquired beliefs and hoping a non-judgemental mind would triumph with acceptance. Acceptance which came naturally to all of us in the beginning of our lives.

Somewhere along the way we get so caught up that we end up losing the plot!They say the soul carries ancient wisdom however very few of us ever scratch even the surface of the reservoir.

We have been so much more than we know, that we have been to so many more places than we remember visiting and yet we feel limited by physical manifestations - of our own body and also the globe.

The soul is like a genie in a bottle, make sure you don't love the bottle more than the genie, else the plot of the story may change completely!

Sanchita Johri

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

By the Shore

This year I went back to Goa for Christmas unlike last year when I was there for New Years and a friend's wedding.

I sat by the seaside listening to the sounds of the elements with the seasoning of human voices and I thought about nothing at all as I stared into oblivion.

Actually I don't know if nothing at all qualifies as a figure of speech for explaining what I thought about.The mind is like the ocean you see, even when it is calm on the surface a deep sea diver will tell you a different story about it's depths. There are high tides and low and sometimes even whirlwinds and storms that differ in intensity and just like the visitors on the shore see a different avatar according to the time of their visit, so is the case with the mind.

It like the ocean is a passive witness to several stories unfold around it and an active participant in many itself. It stands the test of time and carries the load of ships and boats alike. It emerges victorious against some tempests and sometimes it drowns in it's own sorrow and then soars strong and happy like a falcon the next day to unfold legends as it expands it's wings to soar high like a wave waiting to touch the skies.

The ocean is deep and yet not equally everywhere, it is vast and yet you can capture a part of it in your palm and yet it will wash your feet with it's gentle wave like a giant who seems either oblivious of it's strength or too humble to be affected by it.

As I sat lost in thought, a boy with a pamphlet came over and anchored the sailing thoughts. He had come to check if I would want to explore some parasailing.He was carrying a little life jacket and assured me it was safe, so there I was heading right into the middle of the ocean on a motorboat to try something I had never done before.

The mind was nervous and the heart was in sync, I was venturing away from known territory to the flight of the unknown.It was going to be fun I told myself, so while I had to jump from one boat to another, trust my life on a parachute of sorts, I just knew it was going to be worth the experience and believe me it was.

The ocean seemed different from up there, till now I had always seen it from close from the shore, but from up above it looked like an electric blue blanket swaying in the wind. It seemed to speak a different language, a different world, it was however the same big  vast expanse which seemed orange in parts as it reciprocated the colours of the setting sun.It was just a different angle that I was looking at it from and it seemed so different.

Perspective sometimes changes the truth or should I say truth sometimes changes perspective, believe me - even the ocean is open to it :)
Sanchita Johri

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Closet


I sat down today in front of a cupboard that looked very different from what it looked about a month ago. It wasn’t a new cupboard, just the things inside-they were different. It was however a cupboard that I opened every day and yet it seemed to be so new, familiar but changed.

This cupboard stood in the same place, had the same exterior but the inside had changed over the last month. Winter had finally slid in silently through the crevices around, the weather had changed. The change in season had led to a complete over hauling of what I call my private space, an external change that had transformed the interior reality of something that didn’t look altered on the outside at all.

This cupboard which housed the summer wardrobe so comfortably, with the pastel hues of scarves and white linen shirts was now bereft of all the pretty colors of the spring. It stood there ready with the all pervasive dark shades of blues, grays and blacks ready to battle the gusts of the wind and yet I knew that the summer would displace them all soon again.

It really is like one living in the midst of change, just that it is more amicable to embracing change with doors open unlike most people. It doesn’t fuss over letting go or letting the new in and yet it doesn’t look too proud in Spring nor too glum in Autumn. It just stands there ready for the next season, circumstance or transition.

It made me think of the people I meet and how they have changed over the years, just like the cupboard. Some people who I adored for their sense of humour or zest for life had somewhere along the years given in to the bitterness and the harsh winter that life had shown them, whereas some really serious people had evolved into the happy charmers whose laughter beats many a background score.

However, there is a difference you see - to adapt, the cupboard changed with the weather but never really changed, the people changed with the weather however they really did change.
Season’s Greetings – let the bonfires always ignite the very best in us!
Sanchita Johri

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Erosion


He often thought about his gang of friends, the awesome foursome he couldn't imagine his life without. They were inseparable or at least till about 10 years ago.

He never could forgive Harry for marrying his ex-girlfriend, even though he was dating someone else by then. It just wasn't the thing to do to a friend. That was the end of it, no meeting at their hangout to plan the bachelor party, no phone calls, no bike rides...it was well another kind of break up!

Sahil and the others tried convincing him several times and even though his heart didn't ache - he knew that something had been hurt. That something at that age was his best friend and was above all else - including his gang.

So while his friends had the time of their life, he sat sulking in a corner of his rented PG in North Campus staring at the cigarette butts that had run out on him as well.

He had decided that those guys were just not good people, they didn't understand him nor care for him. They just weren't worth his time anymore.

He of course didn't fit into their plans post that as his new Bhabhi wasn't to happy to see him either and life of course moved on to new first jobs, cities, friends and priorities.

Ten years later he still sat staring at the cigarette butts which lay sprawling in his cut glass ashtray in his corner office, thinking through the smoke of the one in his hand about times that could have been...

He wondered where those guys were and if Nikhil had been able to fulfill his wish of marrying a Madhuri look alike, his mouth still twitched into a smirk at the thought of Rahul living his dream life which was to be well settled with wife and two children latest by the age of 26! Sahil was considered the sorted one, the one who had all his plans in place from post grad to perfect retirement at the age of 35.

Over the span of his averagely long career, he had met so many people he liked, got along with, etc, etc.. however no matter who they were, they weren't ever going to be his band of boys. There is a back slapping familiarity and a comfort which is a by product of empty wallets and tabula rasa hearts!

There was a college reunion today and he obviously was too busy to attend it and really who was going to turn up from his batch anyway. So he sat in his office lost in the silence of the past when his secretary intruded into the silence with a message. He had some clients waiting and she wanted to know if she could send them in. When suddenly for the first time in a long time someone walked right into his cabin without knocking followed by two -three others...it was them, he knew. There was an awkward silence and then so much noise that it really was hard to tell if they were talking, crying or laughing.

People are never black or white, it is usually the weather that casts a shadow and those who value people over opinions always have faith that the sun will shine again.
Storms should never be stronger than human bonds :) when the sun shines and when it sets...

Sanchita Johri

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Blind Spot

He took the same route to office everyday even though it was the longer one. He didn't quite think about why - but there was something that made him not change or try the other one.

He saw the same scene of a man beating or pushing a beggar boy and though it bothered him he never gave it much thought . I mean why would he it wasn't any of his business.

He would reach office and head for his morning chai break and observe the little boy at the dhaba growing thinner by the day and the scolding from the owner only getting louder. He would occasionally hand the boy a packet of biscuits on the sly.

He'd drive home and wait for the guard to open the gate while the guard would kick a sleeping dog or pelt him with stones till the dogs whimpering could be heard in the neighbourhood. After all the guy was only doing his job and it wasn't like it was his pet dog!

The woman who was the help at home would share her troubles with his wife while doing her chores and while what he heard troubled him it really wasn't any of his business.

He'd usually unwind in the evenings chatting with his children and that was the most important part of his day. Today however there was something different about their conversation. His 6 year old son was more quiet than usual and his 8 year old daughter had a sad distant look. He didn't know what to make of it till his wife barged into the room carrying his sons white school shirt. The shirt had blood stains on one shoulder and the children had hidden it in the huge pile of laundry.

After a long chat his daughter now in tears told him of how one of the school staff would beat her brother everyday on some pretext or the other and the children were scared to tell their parents. She even told him about one of their neighbours who worked in the same school and was aware of this brutal beating but did nothing to stop it. His wife by this point was fuming and immediately decided to call the neighbour to confront him.

The expected answer from the other end was a simple one liner - He 's not my son, it really isn't any of my business!