Sunday morning – Wake up, make a steaming cup of chai, head to the living room, unbundle the newspaper set, grab a copy of HT Brunch*, swipe through the pages hurriedly and land on the last page (Personal Agenda Section) – that is where the interviews of famous/not so famous celebrities used to be printed, scour through the interview to find the last question on the page – “The last line of your autobiography would read…?”
(*For those who don’t know what HT Brunch is, it’s a lifestyle magazine by Indian newspaper Hindustan Times, released every Sunday!)
10 years – on loop – I have read almost every answer to this question since 2010!
Have you come across questions such as “What’s your life’s mantra?”, “What statement defines you?”, or “What statement sums up your life until now?” in the interviews of famous people?
I find the answers to these question really interesting.
It is like a quick peek-a-boo game – you get a generous yet intriguing glimpse into a person’s life in just a few words. It is what defines the person’s life story – a beautiful summation of all that has happened, all that matters now and all that will hold importance in the future for that person – all of this in just a few words.
I like to call it a “Power Statement”.
A life mantra that gives immense power to a person in their strongest and weakest moments; a statement that brings a person back to their centre, reminding them of what they’ve been through.
Do you know your power statement?
I know mine.
Whatever happens, happens for the best.
I live by this statement – every moment, every day. It’s a reflection of my life. It gives me an inexplicable vigour, a sort of grit that guides me in making the toughest decisions of my life. It gives me massive comfort, cosmic strength, and most important of all – mighty faith to tackle any challenge in the face of it due to this one staunch belief that life unfolds in a way that’s best suited for an individual.
Is my belief too wonderlandish? Is it a bit philosophical? Is there a reason why my reactions are a particular way? Could there be a more rational side to it?
Maybe or may not be.
Regardless, my left brain loves rationalising everything that I feed into it. Sometimes over-rationalising too #churnittillyouburnit.
I mean, c’mon, if I am making a particular statement my life statement – a power statement, it better be more reasonable and probably backed by logic.
I started with learning more about my own life. Then I realised that just learning my life journey is not enough. There’s more to it than just the life journey. What I learnt during this process of unearthing logic is that there have been certain facets of my life which contributed towards building my power statement.
This led me towards a realisation that those aspects are in fact the perfect ingredients of the recipe of a power statement. Those ingredients aren’t just limited to the making of “my” statement. They could be used by anyone to unravel their own version of the power statement.
A power statement a way to connect & reconnect on-demand with your own self. We find so many ways of staying in touch with the outside world. Why not find what connects us to our inner selves?
So let’s get started with the ingredients to define your version:
1. Pattern Recognition
Our experiences are shaped by the decisions we make.
Although all the decisions we make are done so in a moment of time, every decision we take reflects our state of mind, our culture, values, learnings, past experiences, and feelings till that point of time.
Our decisions, and hence experiences, don’t evolve in the singularity of a moment.
We are led towards an experience that lasts a moment.
That’s the principle of life.
Things move in tandem with what has been experienced till that moment.
What is important to note here is – how has your journey been? Are there any patterns? What gave you strength to embrace your successes? What is it that gave you the strength to dream big and have faith and hope? What made you resilient in times of doubt and vulnerability? What made you pick yourself up every time you experienced a low?
Believe it or not – if you look closely, you will notice patterns in your life. There will always be this one philosophy that you abide by, a mantra that guides you repeatedly subconsciously.
That, fellas, is your power statement.
2. Personality Type
Are you a learner? Are you an explorer? Are you a critic? Do you like romanticising life? Do you like confrontation? Do you like reflection?
You are an intersection of various such dimensions of life. Your perspective towards life results from this intersection. For example you could be an explorer with a passion for spirituality or you could be a utopian with a passion for plurality in society.
This unique intersection makes you ‘you’ and shapes your standpoint towards life-matters. It adds depth to your way of life. Your personality type (intersection) is a great step towards unraveling your way of life. It’s an indicator of plausible mantras that you unknowingly uphold in your life. The same building blocks that define your identity could be used to define your power statement.
3. Calibration Tool
I believe in finding peace within our own selves. Finding your center*, and being able to live in that state is the most rewarding experience.
*Center – a mind state where you are the most calm version of yourself & where your stability takes over all the emotions and distractions, resulting in deep peace and absolute pleasure within
While you may find your centre and even experience it, how do you ensure coming back to it every time you wander off and go astray?
This is where the calibration tool will come into help. Calibration tool is a technique to find a way back towards the centre. We all have various forms of this calibration tools in our pocket. For some it could be fellow humans who help them stabilise, for others it could be a meditation/prayer or music and arts that gets them back to their happy state, or for some others it could be a faith and belief that could guide them towards their centre.
Whatever your calibration tool is, it plays a vital role in tuning yourself back in sync. The elements – be it fellow humans, prayer, music, arts, faith, or belief – are reflections of your underlying beliefs – they are indicators of aspects that make you feel “complete” and at peace. Those elements are precisely what will guide you in closer understanding of your own selves and thereby take you closer towards realising “what really matters to you”.
People who find comfort in fellow humans could be subconscious believers of “Reach out for love as love heals everything”. Those who turn to prayers or music could have “Beauty lies in expression which leads to calming of soul” as their power statement & they may use “expression” as a tool to bring themselves back to their own centres! The possibilities are unlimited!
Do you think you can find your power statement through your tool?
4. Drive towards finding meaning of life
The concrete jungle has played a huge role in blurring our vision towards life. The rat race, material pleasures, quick (read temporary) rewards, and societal dilemma have blended perfectly to create a mirage of purpose of life in the modern life. We get fooled every time we feel we have interpreted the purpose.
Despite this, it is the drive towards finding meaning of your own life that helps you quench your thirst of finding your melody.
Some may find their calling in nature as “giving back” matters to them the most. Some may find their interest in enterprises and business ventures as maybe “get out there and do it” is their life mantra. Some may find passion in spirituality as “calm inside creates calm outside always” is their go-to statement.
Understanding what is “meaningful” to you is a great way to connect with yourself and to remind yourself of it in times of need.
Where do you stand on the drive-finding front? What drives you to get going everyday? Maybe that’s where you’ll find your calling!
Many a times, we find amazingly inspiring people in our lives. They could be in the form of a friend, mentor, parent, sibling, famous person, or colleague. We feel impressed by how they live their lives and conduct themselves. Why not just copy their life mantra? It is absolutely harmless and healthy. There is tremendous value in learning from other humans. In fact, it’s actually very beautiful to be able to pick those aspects from others which we like and implementing them in our lives.
Caution: Don’t get so lost in just admiring the beauty of their lives & then getting bogged down by it. What it looks from outside is that their lives are sorted – maybe they are or maybe they aren’t. Selectively picking up what interests us is the key.
I found my theme using these tools. Do you think you can find yours too?
Finding your own melody and tuning back to it whenever life goes out of tune – this is your power statement.
Once you find your melody, you just have to tune into it whenever required & be rest assured that life will unfold in the best way possible for you!
The purpose of life is right in front of us: It’s to create a reality we want to inhabit — to reach towards the better end of our conscious experience. – Zak Rana
Download the cheatsheet for your future reference to keep this thought stirring in your mind.