I am an overworked, over-travelled corporate worker who always chases some deadlines or targets. Ever since, I crossed 40, I am trying to lead balanced life. In true corporate style, I started to look at my life analytically. By prevalent working norms in workaholic Singapore, I leave my office rather early at 630 PM. I spend early evening with my son playing, doing his homework. Our family of three sits down for dinner everyday sans mobile on a dinning table to share daily updates. Once my son is asleep me and my wife chat up or watch a movie. I never miss my weekly skype call with my parents, parent-in-laws and chat with siblings. I catch up with my colleagues occasionally on friday evening drink. All neighbor-friends get together for a monthly drink party... It almost sounds perfect doesn't it? Well everybody said so but I wasn't sure. I still thought something was missing. I had all boxes ticked still there were blank areas.
Then our school- friends reunion happened. It started as a freak idea to get together away from home, without spouses and kids and have non-stop fun for 4-5 days. This concept was inspired by the movie Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara (ZNMD), we wanted to create those carefree moments for ourselves and live them for a short while. We were not sure how many of us would be ready to take the bait. To our surprise almost a dozen of us turned up in Singapore. Everyone took leave from our workplaces, our families, our clients, our meetings, our deadlines, our calendars, our mobiles and most importantly from various roles we were tired of playing in our day to day lives.
The Reunion was almost like a time-machine. As soon as we met, the entire group of 40 somethings got transformed into a group of 20 somethings with 20 years of experience. We drove, walked, swam, ate, drank, slept, snorkeled, sailed, wound down, laughed, cried, got scared, cooked, sang, got drunk, danced together for 4 days non-stop. We talked about our friendships, our fights, our studies, our secret crushes and got reconnected. What we had was 100 hours of unadulterated fun. We had switched off from our roles and responsibilities for a while and lived a tension-free life.
This had a miraculous effect on all of us. When you are working on the computer/phone for a long time, it slows down, colors are dull, music is offbeat, nothing works; then you restart your computer/ phone and everything works fine, colors are bright, music finds its rhythm. This Reunion had the same effect on us. One month after this unforgettable trip we all are happier and motivated in life.
We got our moments that we will cherish for life. We are all back to grind but life feels more balanced. We were perfectly happy with our families, colleagues and neighbors but friends was the missing link. The carefree fun time was the missing link. Connection with friends who knew you when you were nobody, was the missing link.
Now its our annual resolution to create a few moments in our own lives that would last us for the lifetime. How would you take that as a new year resolution!