The Power of Experiences

When you are young, you look at life with a certain freshness of thought and vision, which disappears as you grow older. Recklessness is replaced by careful consideration and dreams are replaced by realistic goals..one might argue that there are people who keep their passions alive till their last breath and I am the first one to agree...But still in the continuum of risk vs. conservatism, the scale does shift towards the right, as experiences are added..

Till recently, I used to think that was a sad fact. Not anymore ! There are certain benefits that come with experience which nothing can replace. While I still scoff at people who respond to a piece of advice (let's say on parenting from a childless person or on career from a housewife) with "What do you know ? You have not been through it", I also now realize that someone who has been through the experience is far more qualified to offer advice than someone who hasn't...

I used to often think that people are too busy with their own struggles to actually experience jealousy or envy for a considerably long period of time. However, these can be very powerful deal breakers in any relationship and that's another reason why its necessary for 'birds of a feather to flock together'. With experience I have come to accept that as much as you need to have a heterogeneous mix of friends to keep your intellectual outlooks vibrant and to show you your blind spots, it is friends who have been through the same struggles that you have who will stand by you when it matters the most. (I use friends here quite loosely - it could be relatives, colleagues, even random strangers on the road).

Life is like a river, crystal clear and pure where it originates. Then experiences get dumped on it like debris - often, someone comes along to clean it up, but more often than not you just flow ahead with the debris. Understanding someone's debris is the first step towards caring for that person, and often if the nature of debris (also known as baggage) is very different, then considerable time and energy gets spend in phase 1. Often moving to the next phase is very tedious. The odd case where you are able to do it can be quite rewarding as it expands your horizons like nothing else can. However, sometimes, you need comfort food...a friend with whom you can just be ! And those are found often with shared experiences than otherwise ! As you age, and your responsibilities increase - you still have the same 24 hours that you had as an innocent child or a carefree youth. Naturally, your need for comfort food increases as you just want to relax with friends and not really spend energy on it.

And you see yourselves evolving - focusing on certain aspects that need to be organized before your time is up - things that only you can do ! Social life and your expectations from it also evolve - that's how it is !

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