I think if one were to ask anyone who has known me for a period of more than 3 months to list top three attributes about me, I am pretty sure 90%+ folks would have a variation of “he has a short fuse” in the top three. I recollect being this way from my late teens (I guess some of this runs in the family) but it is rare that I get physical. I still remember when I slapped my best friend in school when he made not so good remark about one my favorite teachers but those are rare (I do not even recollect others) . The closest I have come to harming anyone is when I get mad while driving. To combat unruly drivers in Chennai roads, I have turned into an aggressive , no holds bar driver (who really does not care about physical damage to his own car) and never yield an inch and I generally yield if someone is more aggressive than me (my logic is if someone can drive crazier than me, more power to them)!
But at the same time I believe I do not drive recklessly (anyhow its my definition of recklessness !) …
Few months back there was 360 degree review at work one of the common comments was I get angry, when read it, I was like “Sure, why not- I am like that, that is how I have been and I will continue to be …” But after some introspection I thought if there one thing that folks who work with or know me would prefer me to do, is get less angry or do not show my anger. Its generally tough for me to act, so I made a decision to try and work on this aspect. I am constantly coaching myself about a situation I could have handled differently and not gotten mad. I am not at point where I can claim success but at least I am confident there will be some change …
One area where I am not able to do anything is about getting mad while driving , though I adopt various techniques to drive to work / return when there is less traffic, I have not been able to figure out a way to control my emotions while driving. So I have made a decision to not drive my car to work (unless I need it for some other reason) and take company shuttle everyday (it stops right in front of my apartment) and return every day in shuttle or use public transport (after 8pm crowd is reasonable and I do not care if I sweat or my dress gets crumbled in the evening).
I guess this solves two issues – I always feel guilty about driving a car alone for the 5km commute to work and amount pollution I am causing and the 90% of my car driving time is due to commute to/from work, so by cutting down on my driving, I have less opportunity to get angry.
I may fail to keep up on this but so what at-least I would have tried …
I had Blood and Urine sugar screening on Aug 2011- which showed abnormal Sugar levels (plus bad Cholesterol ratio) , the Doc who looked at the results said I do not need medication but should cut-down on Sugar and exercise,do another review in 6 months. So I am in what folks call Pre-diabetic stage.
When I saw my father fight Diabetes from his late 30s, read and knew enough about it. I have always feared this day and its here, I could have done better But I have been lazy since I fractured my hand in May 2009.
Anyhow I have basically cut sugar and sweets out for pat two months, though I am still struggling to get my daily gym routine but atleast started walking everyday for between 30-60 minutes and getting my fibit step count to average atleast 8000 steps a day.
When we were kids, our mom always made home made sweets atleast 3-4 different variety for every Deepavali (we inevitably got some more from neighbors and friends), so we used to feast on them during Deepavali period and she stopped making home made sweets a few years back. We have generally cut-down on sweets during the Deepavali a lot in the last five years. So this Deepavali I basically did not have any sweets (other a small sampling of Prasadam). I have never doubted my resolve but it was good to know I can do this (rest temptation to have sweets).
I used to joke when I about 20 yrs old – ” I will live to eat until 40yrs and then after 40yrs I will eat to live”, which is so true now. My eating habits started to change when I crossed 35 but I need to be even more cautious now …
Driving on the wrong side of the road
Folks who live in my apartment, to save about 50 meter drive around drive their two wheelers (sometime even cars) on the wrong side of the road. I keep wondering why people do this, often times they do this with young kids, they are not worried about setting bad examples to Children
I stopped driving more than 50KMPH inside city after my son pointed out I was driving more than posted speed limit ( I bargained with him on the fact that 40 KMPH in Anna salai is ridiculously low). I try and drive within the limit even when I drive alone.
Also whenever I drive past the stop-line on a traffic light my kids remind me I need to stop near the stop-line.
One of my Friends at work, Alex was saying that there seems to be a big chunk of folks who are like minded and frustrated with other not following rules on road but we are not doing anything to influence a change. I could not agree more with Alex but will I do anything about it ? Time should answer …
Super rich and ex-pats in Chennai send their kids to International school in Taramani, there is literally a non stop stream of cars in the morning and evening that they cause lots of chaos in that area.
I sometimes wonder why this school does not offer premium transportation as part of it services. Air-conditioned, supper comfortable Vans / min-buses which securely pick the kids from their homes or Apartment blocks and drops them back. Even in a conservative estimate if two kids travel in a car, a 16 seater Van / minibus can remove 8 cars from the road! My Guess is god chuck of these kids are resident in Adyar, Beasant nagar, Along ECR, Kotturpuram, Raja Annamalai puram etc, so easily number of cars can be halfed.
Most of these vehicles are driven by drivers, who park their vehicles in haphazard manner, so of them even wait near the school for the return trip !