“Aaj mere paas building hain, property hai, bank balance hai, bangla hai, gaadi hai. Tumhare paas kya hai?"
If you can recall this famous dialogue from the 1975 Amitabh Bachchan-starrer ‘Deewar,’ you know the proud response that comes from Shashi Kapoor who plays his brother. He stumps him and the audience with one of the best lines in Hindi cinema: “Mere paas maa hai.”
In this intense exchange between the feuding brothers that is one of the highlights of the movie, the filmmaker presents the crux of what makes for a good life.
It is not the wealth and property that you amass in your lifetime that counts. It is the people (the mother, in this reference) who make our life worthwhile.
In 2018, if I had to liken something we possess that is as important in our lives as the roles our mothers play in our lives, it would be that of the choice we have as individuals. Wouldn't you agree? Think about it.
Whether you drive a Lambhorgini car or take the local metro train every day using your monthly Rs 250 card; whether you are a founder of a unicorn venture or just starting up; whether you are the most disciplined person in the world who has his/her life sorted out in boxes or someone who lives life spontaneously – whoever you are, wherever you are, and whatever be your background, we all possess one thing in common: choice.
The choice to respond in any given manner, at any given moment, to anything we encounter in our lives. The choice to laugh, to cry, to love, to hug, to listen, to ask, to speak, to say no, to say yes – the choice to just BE.
All of us have the choice to take life in our own hands and be the best version of ourselves. Or as I've always emphasised over and over again, in various platforms,
“You have the choice to be the hero of your story. And you also have the choice to be the victim in your story. The choice is entirely yours."
And this new year, I pray that you and I continue to choose to be the heroes of our stories, never the victims.
Happy New Year to you.