Focus on the process and the journey

At the recent Toastmasters meeting, I informed people about Stephen Covey’s P/PC balance (Production and Production capability). Covey explains how a company that only worries about production and doesn’t think of machine downtime will soon lose out to the other which plans its PC- production capability with downtime, machine repairs, research, upgrade etc. Similarly, I requested people to concentrate on what they were doing with their own production capability rather than just the results – so sleep habits, eating & exercise, building teams, learning new skills, etc. Focus on the process of self-improvement rather than just the results.

The Toastmaster of the Day (Sid) had a couple of lovely messages with “Movies” as the theme. Interestingly, I felt they applied to this overarching theme of the process. He opened with a story about his granduncle explaining the time and effort it took to create a movie. He showed him the many takes, the edits and all the effort that went into creating one clip in a movie. All this effort is always hidden and we only see the movie. But such is life. You may have to put in days or months of effort and that would yield one moment to present yourself. Like they say, it takes 10 years to become an overnight success.

Sid’s conclusion was equally apt. He said a good movie plot should not be judged on the twists and the climax, but instead on how the movie progresses between those points. Life is similar to that, we long for and sometimes dwell inside some key moments. But the real action happens between those points in your life. The points are just photographs, the movie is between them.


In search of Pizza

I recently watched a tamil movei –Kaaka Muttai. The story revolves around two slum children of Chennai whose desire is to taste a pizza. They collect money by selling charcoal & try to use the money to buy pizza. They are not let in because they were from the slum. So then they try to go look for ways to buy better clothes and eventually “obtain” better clothes. On their second attempt- they are denied entry again. The story continues with such twists until the last scene where the boys are greeted at the pizza spot with a red carpet . The owner also promises to give them pizzas whenever they come even if they don’t have money to give. However, the final scene shows the brothers saying to each other that the dosa which their grandmother gave them was better than the pizza they were eating.

Isn’t life much the same? When we focus very heavily on the goal, often when we get to the destination we are disappointed.

After all, life is about looking out of the window.