Serendipity awaited me the day I stumbled on to Your Quote’s FB page.
I have been using the app since the last few months but not being very active on Social Media, I did not connect to the YQ’s page till then.
The day I searched for it, I found registrations open for its first women only open mic, Bengaluru, on Women’s International Day(8/3/19)
My ego jumped at the idea of performing. The past accolades for my public speaking and the very fact that the presence of a captive audience brings the best in me like a pinch of salt in a dish; made me yearn for a mic. But, the six months old writer within held my hand, patted my shoulder and asked me to cool down.
“You do not have to give a speech but throw your work out there for people to speculate it and you as well.”, Said the voice. I agreed and then contemplated on: to go or not to go.
The dilemma about the opportunity eventually turned out to be a choice to take an unknown journey or not: the junction on which life brings us several times. At this end was the comfort zone accepting admirations from a handful of people and on the other end lied an unknown territory which could be an adventure if I go prepared with an open heart or a disaster if I fumbled and feared.
I went on with the registration and made up my mind to perform in Your Quote open mic. And yes…I was nervous like never before! The nervousness of the first day of the school..or many days for a school hater like me; nervousness of the first day of an interview; knowing yet not knowing what to expect and any other agitation that you can relate to. I was peeved at this alien feeling and in a bid to overcome it, started planning for the D-day.
I chose a humorous piece to present(Make Paanipuri not Politics), contemplated the logistics of reaching the venue and improvised on my work I intended to share.The whole process; which I reckoned as a journey was, in reality, three important journeys I was about to take.
Physical journey: It is a movement from one place to the other. No doubt the participation was going to be a significant internal shift but the fact that I had to travel to a few kms in Bangalore in the evening was no less a joke. I started plumbing the distance between my house and the YQ headquarters through Google maps. Twenty km.!! and travel time 2hrs and 28 minutes!
The commuting hours made me think that after all, in Bangalore the best solution to beat the traffic and consequent side effects, is to consider renting a room near the destination a day before, buy groceries, cook and when the time came easily stroll to the venue? The safest thing to do rather than braving this traffic.
However, I estimated the time required to reach and the time I would have to book the taxi and, before that keep my clothes and stuffs ready and, before that be ready with my performance!
Inner Journey: YQ opportunity lead me towards self-exploration. I started evaluating the upcoming challenge of performance against my growth so far as a writer. This self-research gives joy and unveils new facets of the self which, if paid attention can provide an extra dimension to the personality.
I had been reading the writers from YQ and watched a few performance videos as well. To gauge ourselves against the challenge is not for self-criticism or comparison but to discover the best aspect of that we wish to develop to become our better selves than yesterday.
Creative Journey: once my inner exploration was done for the occasion, another critical thing required was to walk again on the creative path to see if I discover new ideas and inspiration on the way.
I re-read and re-performed my work unless some feeling rang true in my mind and heart that said, “this is fine!” I discovered more imagination and innovation while creatively speculating my work.
Be it accomplishing a task or holding an event no matter how small or big:the above three journeys would offer a series of clues to pick, work on and move towards your goal in the most desired manner.
Needless to say that I reached the venue before time, met people from age 19 to 50. Met people of different age with a shared interest in writing.
The team of YQ offered a welcoming ambiance and a willingness to listen.The energy was infectious, and the work of very talented girls and ladies touched, shook and, inspired the new writer within me.
I did my part, and the encouragement, claps, and laughter told me that my journey was full filled. Every mission, after all, has some goals to achieve or problems to be solved. My goal was met as well. I left with more motivation to write!