Thursday is the ‘official’ power cut or load shedding day in my city. From 9.00 in the morning till 5.30 in the evening, there is no electricity. With not so efficient UPS backup at my workplace, I am left with some ‘free time’ on Thursdays. I have a normal human psychology, I mean when the PC is not working; I remember a hell lot of work which could be done only with computers. So, earlier I used to feel a bit irritated with power cuts, lack of backups etc. But once I realized that there was nothing I could do about it, I started looking for alternatives.
One task which always needs my ‘most urgent attention’ is the cleaning of papers lying on the table. (You may also like to read my earlier post ‘Clean Act’. Please, visit http://thistimethattime.blogspot.com/2008/11/clean-act.html ) I have as many as three trays on my table, and whatever I do there are always some papers in those trays. Add some 50+ files, full of papers and you will understand my plight.
I might have many faults, but I have my strengths too. Once I understand the problem, I try to solve it with full determination. So, I religiously take up ‘cleaning’ work, whenever I have such opportunities. And at least once in a month, my dustbin looks like this :)
The other day I was just wondering about my efficiency. Why I am throwing away so many papers? In the first place, it means I am gathering too many unnecessary and unwanted things. Does it mean that my decisions are not right? Does it mean that my preferences are not right? Does it mean that I invest my energy in wrong things? Does this indicate that I am spending much of my time in the things I do not like or I do not want to do? Does this apply to my whole life?
Certainly not. Because most of the things I am throwing away today, were very important at a point of time. What I am keeping today as ‘important’ will have to go to dust bin one day. These papers stay with me until they are important, but their importance is not lifelong. Their power lies in their utility. The moment they cease to be useful, they are out, they are to be thrown away. The secret of their existence is their relevance. The moment they cease to be relevant, they become garbage.
What is true about papers, applies too well to human life. Our importance too is temporary. Whatever power position we might have, it is only temporary. People would value us only until we are ‘useful’ and ‘relevant’. No matter what qualities you have, if you are not relevant, you will be treated as dust.
To be ‘relevant’ is the most important challenge one faces in life.
But we need to ask ourselves: what I am doing today as a compulsion of life, is it relevant to the purpose of my life? After all people’s perceptions regarding relevance keep on changing, but the 'consistency in lifelong relevance' is something which we should strive for – whether we are treated like a king/queen or like a beggar! None of the ‘great’ personalities were treated as ‘relevant’ by their contemporaries.
So, a time comes in our life when ‘relevance’ becomes the most ‘irrelevant’ value!!