When I was an inmate of IIT KGP hostel during my student days, it was always difficult for me to be alone. I always had people, friends around me. Even during study time, I would go to someone’s room and study. I really didn’t know why. No, I was not scared of anything but yes, there was a certain element of comfort when I had others around me.
Over the years, this continued. I was always a people’s person. Talking, conducting meetings, giving presentations, convincing people to think the way I do, has been part and parcel of a major portion of my professional life. I loved travelling all over the world, meet the best of minds in business, well-known dignitaries, share my thoughts with them, more importantly learnt a lot from most of them. There were years in my professional life wherein I would have travelled over 250 days in a year to different countries, in different time zones, mostly all by myself. I used to say jocularly, that I saw Madame Tussaud, on my 14th visit to London. Never found time to do that earlier. That was my life. This lasted for about 8years. God has been really kind to me for giving me this exposure.
Then came a point of time in life, when I started growing and evolving as a person, horizontally, from growing vertically. Vertical growth had given me huge professional landmarks and achievements, but horizontal growth led me to the path of self-discovery. Then I began the process of self actualisation. Once you start doing that and it happened to me naturally, as most of the things had happened earlier, I just wanted to be with myself. That’s when I realized and absorbed actualisation process. The ‘high’ of being ‘alone’ but never ‘lonely,’ dawned on me. Questions about understanding ‘self,’ and who I am, became a dominant part of my journey. It attracted me hugely. This was the time when I frequently travelled to Bhutan and fell in love with that place, enjoying my solitude. The same guy who used to go to his friend’s room to study, travelled without work, for 8 to 10 days, to Bhutan, all by himself and was mentally occupied completely. I saw things of life from a different perspective, that I had never seen before. A complete transformation thus happened.
Floating, thin clouds, crossing the huge mountains, fearlessly and traversing its path, was an endearing sight for me, every morning in Thimpu, the capital of Bhutan. Today, as I sit on my 54th floor apartment terrace in Dubai, watch both the tall buildings, large number of tiny looking cars on the roads, as well as the expanse of the vast sky, the half-moon and admire my ‘alone-ness,’ it feels lovely and makes all my energies return with renewed vigour of strategic thoughts and intellectual journeys of life, which I have lived and God willing, would live a bit more.
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