I really liked this post by Chris Dixon, where he talks about how the default state of startups is failure. I am not just saying it for my efforts with Photowalkrs, I can relate it to other things as well. He mentions a point that I guess you will also agree with, nobody likes change ! People expect the things to be the way they have been in the past, trying out at the cost of derailment from the course is something which is not encouraged. When one gets into a top tier engineering college, expectations are that the academic grades should never drop, because they hadn’t till now. Well, my case wasn’t so. So, it was the first and probably the most important, and somewhat regretful part of my time at BITS, but it wasn’t because of me suddenly becoming dumb after getting into BITS, it has been a slow process involving lot of variables. A lot of these variables are based on how I react and respond to the trends and priorities.
But coming to the next , I was working with the Inspired Karters team till last year, for making the first formula styled racing car at BITS. It was pretty much like working in a startup, we started from scratch and fabricated the computer designed structure and parts. We were working against all odds, and instead of supporting us, we were discouraged to make the effort, both from outside and inside the campus. We made the car and raced it at the National Contest, although we didnt win, but we didnt make the effort just for winning a race. It was more of a test to prove that we can build while managing everything else. Working with Photowalkrs has been a similar story till now, the challenges have somewhat increased though. There is a support team behind us, including our mentors and others, but a lot of people just dont get the idea why we should put our efforts into it ! well, atleast we are not falling into the pit of mediocrity, because we are atleast getting reviews, mostly positive but some negative as well. Here is what Seth Godin has to say about getting judged or getting ignored.
I’m reading The On-Purpose Person, by Kevin W. McCarthy, and I can totally relate to the book. I would quote a phrase in the book that I had highlighted just for this post – “Not knowing who you are means there’s a built-in excuse for avoiding maturity. It has what looks like freedom and excitement, but it comes at the cost of an unsatisfying emptiness” I see a lot of my friends just wandering through this emptiness, and I am not saying it from a point that I’ve achieved so much that i can criticize other now, but its what has been my base for my decision or rather efforts to avoid that emptiness. Some have been just treading the path that they believe is destined for them, and a few just turn into pretension, claiming to a higher life with luxuries being the only motivator for their existence. I find these hypocrites the most resentful. The most important thing is to have a purpose in life, ive been figuring out mine, atleast I have an interim one that I’m working with. It keeps me away on the course and away from a long term failure, although the short term ones are really demotivating, i must say !
At the end, I would like to say that I made the choices on my own, and I feel my conviction getting higher whenever I sit to contemplate about the decisions ive made till now. Sure, I could’ve continued doing what I had been doing since school, do well in studies, be a good boy, keep everyone happy ! But I chose to have detour, and in this process i have received a lot of criticism from lot of my friends. But I believe its better to do fight against odds and try converting failures into success, I guess we have already heard a lot of stories of the usual trend. Lets try to spin the clock other way this time.