‘Live in the present and keep your mind at peace’: Shreyans Jain, Co-Founder, Under 25

The Proust Questionnaire is a questionnaire about one's personality. It has its origins in a parlour game popularised by Marcel Proust, the French essayist and novelist. He believed that, in answering these questions, an individual reveals his or her true nature.

Shreyans Jain is the co-founder of Under 25, along with Anto Philip. They’ve set out to create the voice of creative youngsters in the country today. Here are his answers to our Proust Questionnaire...

What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Living in the present and constantly working towards having your mind at peace. Being perfectly happy is all about perspective.

What is your greatest fear?

Old age.

What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

The need to immediately reach closure about thoughts and things. Impatience isn’t always bad, but more often than not, it is.

What is the trait you most deplore in others?

I’m more critical about myself than others. I tend to focus on what I love the most about other people rather than what’s deplorable.

Which living person do you most admire?

David Beckham. A true example of creating a legacy and a human form of passion and hard work, while being supremely suave. He makes it look all so effortless!

What is your greatest extravagance?

I spend a questionable amount on experimenting with coffee.

What is your current state of mind?

Always living in a state of irrational optimism. Happiness is derived from true enthusiasm and I guess that’s the state of mind to always go for.

What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

My thoughts on virtues are slightly different. Every person is a sum of his/her experiences. These experiences have either aided the growth of these virtues or they’re inherent. Which is what makes each person unique and interesting. None of the virtues are overrated, they’re a consequence of your experiences or being. The focus should always be on how you can be happy and compassionate, within yourself and bring it to others. Celebrate the diversity of people and their virtues!

On what occasion do you lie?

Sometimes to shield pain.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?

Top representation from the self love club right here! As cliché as it may sound, but I truly do love myself exactly the way I am.

What is the quality you most like in a man?

I appreciate a man who has the ability to freely express his emotions and not necessarily live upto the stereotypical standards set by the society.

What is the quality you most like in a woman?

I love the quality of having a conversation with a woman that teaches me something new, about the world, businesses or even spiritual perspectives. I’ve been fortunate to meet so many of them because of the Under 25 Summit, and I truly admire that.

Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

“We’ll Figure it Out”

What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Man’s greatest creation: Coffee!

Which talent would you most like to have?

I wish I could work excel sheets as well as I should be able to. Going to spend a lot of time this year learning that skill!

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Be more responsive through calls and texts. I’m making mortal enemies for a very unnecessary reason!

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

The world hasn’t seen it yet. But it truly is in the works and we believe it’s going to change the world. Watch out!

If you were to die and come back as a person or a thing, what would it be?

I hope I can say this without you having to blur the lines between self love and narcissism. I would totally come back as myself. There’ll be so much left to do and build and love. I could use an extra 100 years for sure.

Where would you most like to live?

If it isn’t Bengaluru, it’ll be a quaint town in Scotland called North Berwick.

What is your most treasured possession?

The community and the connections that we’ve built because of Under 25 will always be the most treasured.

What do you regard as the lowest depth of misery?

Misery can be either material or in the mind. When you’re not willing to listen, it’s the lowest depth of misery.

What is your favourite occupation?

Being in the business of building the largest youth brand the country has seen. I’m pursuing my most favourite occupation, no joke!

What is your most marked characteristic?

Being infectiously happy, optimistic and sometimes (as you can see), more profound than necessary!

What do you most value in your friends?

I value my friends who understand that experiences create different priorities and are willing to stick by no matter what.

Who are your favourite writers?

I really admire Dan Brown, Gregory David Roberts and Alan Watts. Currently reading Yuval Noah Harari and he’s incredible too!

Who is your hero of fiction?

Harvey Spectre from Suits is the real OG.

Which historical figure do you most identify with?

My history is quite bad to be honest. I’d love to have identified with some figure if I concentrated during those lessons!

What is it that you most dislike?

When people aren’t kind, especially to staff or someone that they don’t know.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My dad, without question. I haven’t seen anyone maintaining their cool the way he does and there’s just so much to learn from that.

What is your favourite name?

Kabir is a really cool name. Sounds super Bollywood. We just named our nephew that too!

What is your greatest regret?

Not having told my closest friends, my family and most importantly my partner, about how much they all mean to me. Actively trying to change that. If you’re reading this, you guys are the absolute best and there’s nothing but love for all of you.

How would you like to die?

In good health. After living an epic bundle of decades.

What is your favourite journey?

Anto and I travelled to Europe a couple years ago and that was easily one of the most interesting journeys. We’re headed to the USA soon, so looking forward to a repeat to that!

What is your motto?

Everything will fall in place. We’ll figure it out.


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