The Cookie Plate

One of my colleagues got us a box of cookies today from his vacation and he placed them all in our office pantry in a plate at lunch time. I tried both – chocolate and chocolate brownie flavor; and they were so delicious ! The mini me insisted me to have a second round since there were many more even after everyone had treated themselves with the sweet treat. That mini me was temptation. And let me tell you, fighting the world is easier than fighting with your own self. 
Image result for cookie plate
So what did I do ? Well, I walked away from the temptation. Even from the 2 cookies I got for myself, I shared them with my coworker and the other cookies I packed up for our house keeping guy.  Oh boy ! The happiness in his eyes was worth every bit of it. He said he’ll share it with his friends and that struck a chord to me. How the little acts of kindness and sharing can brighten up someone’s day. I’m glad I walked away from the temptation and it was empowering.
Temptations come in several forms and fashions. At times they come in such disguise that one can’t recognize them easily.
The very first step is to recognize the temptation and acknowledge to yourself that you are tempted.
Next is what I’d call the “drop the rope”.
Imagine a tug of war fight between you & your temptations where you are basically fighting against yourself & end up being stretched with fruitfulness. So instead of tugging on to the rope harder, why not drop the rope ?
Try finding peace with the victory and the defeat both at the same time. Try a path which brings you fulfillment and joy even in losing against your temptations.
And NO – it’s not a “The Grapes are Sour” consolation you give yourself. Dropping the rope should bring peace and solace and not regret.

The cookie plate is a metaphor to all sorts of temptations life throws at us. And remember, even if no one is watching – God is always watching us. 

Long time, No see !

Being away from blogosphere, feels like being away from my friends and family. In this interim time, I have managed to be in touch with my writing and have many thoughts to be shared on this space.

I still remember my initial days on WordPress – when knowing every new blog & the blogger behind was such a magical experience! I’d be agog to receive a like or a comment on my posts and it would make me elated beyond limits 😀 It made me believe that we are all connected by an invisible bond of friendship and the human touch in all forms of interaction is something that is invincible.

Returning back to writing on my blog, feels like homecoming. As Charles Dickens has very eloquently said :

I relish every bit of this homecoming. To my wonderful blogging family – I have missed you all !

Hugs & Love ❤

An Open Letter To Myself . . .

Dear you,

Sub.: Letting go

I know it’s hard. I know you want to hold the sand in your fist, a bit longer. But the harder you’re trying to hold on it to, the quicker it’s flowing away; isn’t it ? Letting go is hard, to put it as the very least. There’s pain and agony which is directly related to the affection and the connection you share with the person or the thing you are about to let go.

I want to close your eyes and recollect the moment your parents had; when you were 3 and they first had to let you go, apart from them – for 4 hours as you set your feet into the alien world; to attend your playschool. Then, when you bid adieu to them to pursue your dreams when you turned 18. Did they stop you ? What if they did ?

Image result for parent letting go childs hand

We are like cocoons, constantly morphing. From a larvae, to a caterpillar to a butterfly. To grow, we constantly need to evolve. And that means, shredding some bits of us at times. The metamorphosis may be painful; but in hindsight when you connect the dots, the transformation makes it all worth it.

Letting go teaches us that everything in life is finite and perishable. So, enjoy when you can, with what you have. It teaches us to be stronger and braver to embrace tomorrow. It teaches us to value the people and things in our lives as often in our sedentary lives, we take a lot for granted. Letting go makes makes us hopeful – someday our paths might cross, isn’t the world such a tiny place ? And, sometimes letting go makes us meet the people who truly are yours. After all, like the Salmon fishes, don’t we yearn go back to our roots ? That’s why they say, if you love someone, let them go. If they are truly yours, they will come back to you; someday. Also, at times, we need to let go of toxins – things like alcohol, toxic relationships, regrets & grudges. Fear not, as Paulo Cohelo has rightly said –

If you are brave enough to say a good bye, very soon life will reward you with a new “Hello” !

So my dear friend, be brave and strong. As you open your heart to the great pains of separation, you also act as a catalyst to a beautiful transformation.

Let it all go, see what stays.

Love,
Himali 

Dear Zindagi : Beloved Life – You are amazing !

I bet, any girl watching the movie Dear Zindagi; would have a crush on Jag – the character portrayed by Bollywood’s undoubted King –  Shahrukh Khan. The way he navigates Kaira to maze out of the complexities of life so effortlessly made me realize that life is simple, we complicate it beyond repair and they complain about life being unfair and harsh. That all problems come with opportunities in disguise and a solution, always ! At times all you need is a catalyst to help you settle the dust and see yourself clearly amidst the turbulent waters.

During the final shots of the movie, Kaira confesses her crush on Jag, to the man himself and it was both adorable and heartwarming. The way Jag appreciates her for expressing her emotions instead of suppressing them, won over my heart.

On my way home from work, I was trying to reflect upon the types of crushes one can have in life. Before I begin penning them down let me share what my definition of a crush is. A crush for me is someone I adore and admire, who inspires me in some ways leaving me attracted to them and wanting to know them or talk to them a little more. My crush would leave a smile on my lips every time I’d think about them.

Below may not be an exhaustive list but let me try to write then down my classification of crushes :

– Romantic crushes
Someone you harbor romantic feelings for

– Professional crushes
That smart, successful colleague you aspire to be like

– Intrinsic crushes
Being attracted to someone because they are kind, humble, caring, et el.

– Extrinsic crush
Looks to die for, dimples to kill for and eyes to live for 🙂

– Unattainable crushes
The ones you only get to meet in your dreams 😀 Dove, where did you fly away ?

– Fictional crushes
Falling for the protagonist of that novel or movie and wishing they were real ! Edward Cullen, are you listening?

– Celebrity crushes
Crushes on celebs in glory of their fandom

– Inspirational crushes
Your role model who gives you several life goals

Something to be noted is that the above, is not a mutually exclusive list ! In fact, it can have several permutations and combinations internally. For example my crush on Shahrukh Khan would be an unattainable, intrinsic celebrity crush.

As air, water and food is vital for human survival, so is the feeling of being loved, cared for and appreciated. A lot of times we fail to convey how much we cherish a person’s lingering fragrance in our lives till they disappear in the hustle and bustle of life.

When being loved is so much important, why do we somehow manage to escape expressing this emotion to our loved ones ? Don’t you think today you should take a break from the monotony and tell someone you crush on ‘Hey, you are amazing !’ ?

The smile which lights up their face will warm your soul this winter.

Special thanks to the first reader of this blog post & the friend who inspired me to complete this write up ! 🙂

A Dedication on Teachers Day

Behind every dream I saw,
There was an unwavering belief..

Behind every wise decisions I took,
There was a learning & a lesson..

Behind every success I cherished,
There was you, my ever inspiring teacher..

mitch albom
One of my most favourite quotes from the book Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

Today on this special day, I would like to thank you for believing in me and my dreams, for creating the strong foundations on which I have built my life on, for giving me wings and for pushing me off the cliff when I was afraid to fly; all of it with never ending love and patience. I may not have come to you every time I succeeded, but I knew that you had my back, anytime I’d falter. Thank you for your love, knowledge and inspiration which has made me who I am today !

Let us take time out to say a thank you to every person who has been a teacher to us in this journey of life. Be it our teachers at school, professors at university, our parents – who are the first teachers to us, our friends and family.

You my dear reader, are also a teacher to me. You inspire me to write and writing does to me what the rains does to the dusty glasses. Thank you for reading along and all the inspiration you give me in all forms !

Much love,
Himali Shah ❤

 
Teachers Day-Decoding Happyness

Seeking a Great Perhaps

Last week reading through John Green’s debut novel ‘Looking for Alaska’ left me pondering over a very important thing – “Seeking a Great Perhaps”. Miles, the protagonist of the novel who is obsessed with last words of great men, leaves his home town to study in a boarding school his father had once studied in. When asked by his parents as to why he wanted to leave, holding a biography of Francois Rabelais, he replies : “Francois Rabelais. He was a poet. And his last words were “I go to seek a Great Perhaps.” That’s why I’m going. So I don’t have to wait until I die to start seeking a Great Perhaps.”

Over quite some time, I have been trying to seek my Great Perhaps and that explains my absence from blogosphere for all these months. There has always been a dream I have carried, but somehow; at some point; something pulled me back from chasing that dream of mine.

Dare to chase your dreams

Over these months, I worked hard and risked it all. I put my self beyond my comfort zone and decided to take the leap of faith. And today, I can say that if there is some secret ingredient  which you need to seek your Great Perhaps; it is that leap of faith and facing your fears heads on ! Taking the first step is difficult. Sometimes impossible. I have been caught up in this dilemma for long. But, I have first hand experienced the magic of risking everything for a dream that only you see !

Dream

I can not describe the happiness I feel at the moment, making my debut post for 2016! I have started writing short stories for an e-magazine and I have so many more stories to share here. I’d like to end with a very unique message I recently learnt from a dear friend of mine – “Passion, rather than discipline is the key to success”. I wish you all the very best to embark on your journey for seeking your ‘Great Perhaps’. 

Signing off 2015

“Some goodbyes mark new beginnings.”

As the sun of 2015 sets and the eve of new year 2016 creeps in, I feel fortunate for this year of learning. This year has given me a lot and also snatched away somethings from me, for which I hold no remorse. The biggest thing which I have gained this year is myself. I have come in terms with my fears and discovered my dreams. I have learned to forgive and love unconditionally. I have gracefully evolved and been shaped into the person I am today by the little lessons life has managed to teach me throughout this year. At times, life was unfair; only to teach me how much hope and faith mean in the darkness. At times life gave me pain, only to put me in the shoes of the ones I hurt, so as to make me more kind and compassionate. I have been showered with love, support and encouragement right from my family and friends to my blogging community. I wish to become like a mirror reflecting and giving back much more love, light and peace I have been fortunate to receive.

2016 holds high hopes, dreams and ambitions for me and you. I will pray for your success and happiness as dearly as I do for mine. Keep me in your prayers. Hugs, love and prayers to you 🙂

Signing off 2015 ! Hello 2016 🙂

Happy New Year 2016 replace 2015 concept on the sea beach

 

Mirror to my soul . . .

Trust the one who can see the sadness in your smile decoding happyness

All of us wear masks at one point in time or the other. Masks of being happy, being sane and normal, being ‘okay’ when we don’t exactly feel the same way within. There are very few people who can see our real selves just by looking into our eyes or from the sound of our ‘hello’. These are the people we needn’t pretend to. With whom we can shed our inhibitions and laugh till our tummy hurts or weep till the sunlight hurts our eyes. They are the mirror to our souls. They show us the turmoil and chaos within us, when at times we lie to our own selves. They are the people who love us unconditionally and understand us more than we do understand ourself at times. Their mere presence is a soothing ointment to our distressed soul.

If you have even one person, who can see the pain behind your masked smile, your being ‘okay’ or the naughty thoughts behind your crooked smile, you are truly the luckiest person 🙂 

Silent hours of the empty nights


Silent empty hours FRIENDS Rachel Green

 

Silent hours of the empty lonely nights,
Tears that stream down my cheeks,
While I stare in the space infinite,
Trying to draw pictures of you and me together,
A heart beat skipped,
When I randomly come across pieces of you,
All this, and so much more;
Have now become my best friends . . .


P.S.: Dedicated to all F.R.I.E.N.D.S. lovers ❤  Somehow, I wasn’t able to find the right image to go along this little poem of mine. I randomly surfed through several episodes of my favorite TV series FRIENDS and found the perfect one to go along – ‘The One With The List’; where Ross makes ‘the list’ about the not so good things about Rachel describing her as “spoiled, ditzy, too into her looks, and just a waitress” – but when he comes to Julie, all he can manage is: “She’s not Rachel”. They break up that night, leaving them both shattered and empty, staring out of the raining window, perhaps looking for pieces of their soul.

Which is your favorite F.R.I.E.N.D.S. moment and why ? Do let me know in the comments below 🙂

When nothing goes right, go WRITE !

When nothing goes right, GO WRITE

When nothing goes right, when you have no one to share the lonesome worries of your heart, go WRITE. Write to your journal, your dairy, your notebook, your email, your mobile app or your blog. Not because someone is going to read, write for yourself. Write to escape. Write to let go. Write to release – the pain, regrets and fears. Write not because you want to, write because you HAVE to.

Let your soul speak, unadulterated. Let it whisper, let it sing. Set it free with the words that flow. Don’t judge yourself, let your heart cry if it wants to. Give it an escape from all the masks you wear to shield your vulnerable self. Let it free from its synthetic laugh and allow it to mourn, to weep. Stop pretending to be strong and let your soul shatter and bleed on paper.

It is often when we acknowledge who we really are, where we stand and how we feel; can we move ahead. Write, not because it can heal all wounds, but because it will allow you to discover the other side of ‘you’. Write, because once you speak your heart out to your secret keeper dairy, the foggy night ahead of you will clear away and give way to the beautiful sunshine and the melody of the birds.

So, when nothing goes right; GO WRITE ! 🙂

Bucket List : Christmas 2015

“Christmas doesn’t come from a store, maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more….”
― Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

Bucket List Christmas 2015 Decoding happyness himali Shah

“Want to keep Christ in Christmas? Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, forgive the guilty, welcome the unwanted, care for the ill, love your enemies, and do unto others as you would have done unto you.”

― Steve Maraboli

Dreams that steal my sleep !

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Some time back I was discussing with a dear friend of mine about how dreams have the power to change lives. True dreams aren’t the ones which we see while asleep, they are the ones that make us forget our hunger and sleep. They lead us to be passionate enough, to make sacrifices for which the world may call one “Crazy” or “Workaholics” !

A few lines from a Bollywood song which give the same message :

Jo tujhe jagaye
Neendein teri udaaye
Khwab hai Sachcha wohi

Neendon mein jo aaye
Jise tu bhool jaaye
Khwab woh sachcha nahin

Angaaron ko jagaaye
Koyalon sa jo gaaye
Khwab hai sachcha wohi

Lehrein jo uthaaye
Paaniyon ko hilaaye
Khwab hai sachche wohi

English Translation of this song is as below :

The one that keeps you awakes and steals your sleep,

That only is a real dream..

The one which you dream while asleep and forget when you wake up,

That is not a real dream..

The one which awakens embers, and which sings like cuckoos,

That alone is a real dream..

One which produces waves, and moves the oceans,

That only is a real dream..

I listen to this song often every time I need some inspiration.

Dreams give us vigor and passion. It is the beauty of risking every cent you have for a dream that nobody sees but you.

Don’t just follow your dreams,

CHASE THEM ! 🙂

Platform 9 3/4

Platform 934

Sometimes you need to leave behind doubts and skepticism,
You need to stop thinking why it ‘wouldn’t’..

Sometimes you have to forget about the thousand times you failed,
And try harder like never before, one last time..

Sometimes all you need to do, is to believe in yourself & your infinite potential,
A lot of obstacles are like closed doors..
Sometimes all you need to do, is to remember,
That all closed doors, aren’t locked..

Some brick walls are built to test you,
There is a magical platform 9 3/4 behind it, waiting for you..
All you need to do, is to run with passion..
This is when ‘miracles’ happen !

Because, when man aspires for something with all his heart,
His desire becomes a magnet to attract, what the world calls ‘magic’ & ‘miracles’ !!

— Himali Shah

Hogwarts Express

Gratitude Fills My Heart

gratitude

21st Sept is celebrated as “World Gratitude Day”. Unfortunately, I got to know about the same, just today. But, regret not ! It is always better to be late, than never. Let us celebrate this wonderful week as “Gratitude Week”, thanking the people who fill colours in the rainbow of our lives and bring light and love to our being.

Thank you so much for being a wonderful blessing in my life 🙂 Life is a bundle of gifts in all forms. I am thankful to every person I have met in this journey of life who has made me the person I am today.

I am thankful to my wonderful blogging community – my friends without borders of nations – who have helped me realise, my love for writing and have never failed to encourage me with their love and support.

I thought to myself, as to what can be a better way to celebrate this day than by thanking God for the presents he has showered upon me.

Here is my #ThankYouGod list :

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So what’s on your list ?

Thank you for reading along ! ❤

Conditions Apply ?

Life doesn’t come with a “conditions apply” tag or guarantees. We do not know what life will serve in its platter in the next 5 minutes or what we will be like over the years to come. Yet we never question life. Why ? Because we have faith. Because we trust. We trust life. We trust the supreme creator, some call him God. We take life as it is, as it comes, the atrocities and the hardships as well as the joys and happiness. At times we feel disappointed, but that doesn’t mean that we give up. We persist. Because we know that life has its booms and recessionary phases. At times life is a beautiful sunny day and at other times, we are walking in the dessert sand guided by the dim moonlight !

Conditions Apply Himali Shah

So it is with love. But why do we fail to understand this ? Just as life, love comes with no guarantees, there is no guarantee that the person you love so unconditionally, will ever feel the same way for you. You can not attach conditions to love saying that you will love if your conditions are fulfilled. Love is a form of trust. A form of surrender to the person you love. Love is unconditional. Love is not because, it is despite. Love is not merely about a lover. It is the love of parents, a friend, a child, a teacher, a neighbor, a pet or a stranger at times. Love doesn’t question. Love doesn’t ask for anything in return. Love only gives without expecting anything in return. True love is when you see the glimpse of the almighty in another soul, as it is well said :

“Tu hi to jannat meri, tu hi dil ka sukun,
Tujme rab dikhta hai, yaara mein kya karu”.

“You are my heaven, you are my heart’s content,

I see God’s reflection in you, my love”

Love without questions, inhibitions, demands or conditions. Then you will never need to find love. Love will find you. It will engulf you in its ocean till you are submerged. Till your heart overflows with love, care and compassion for every living being, after all we all are a reflection of God.

Hello Happ’y’ness !!

Decoding Happyness

Decoding Happiness is now Decoding Happ’y’ness 😊

With a brand new logo and tag line ! Like it ? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

Know the person behind this blog : Check my About Page

Why Decoding Happ’y’ness ?? Visit Decoding Happ’y’ness Page

NEVER, Ever Give up on Life & Hope !

sayings-about-life

We all have good days, days when we feel like we are flying in spaceships towards the cosmic joy, we have sad days, days that are just empty & days that seem like the worst has doomed upon us. For someone the “worst” might be a breakup with their lover, a quarrel with their family or beloved friend, failing an exam, not getting the job they dreamed of or a failure or setback which diminished all forms of hope and faith in goodness & the Almighty, a death or a loss that is impossible to recover.

Capture

Life is like a bell shaped cyclic curve. At a point in time, things get pretty stagnant and dull. Continue reading

My Dearest Teacher

Teacher

Had you not held my hand,
When I stumbled, on way to meet knowledge,
I would have been lost..

Had you not answered the questions of my curious mind
Which, to everyone else might have seemed so lame,
I would have been a half-baked pot..

Continue reading

Wordless Wednesdays : Butterflies <3

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We are all butterflies of the almighty. We start off as caterpillars. Unaware of our potentials ! Not knowing of the beautiful wings that are yet to unfold. And then, slowly and gradually, we morph; into beautiful, colorful and graceful butterflies, spreading love and happiness wherever they sit, even for a moment. Continue reading

Reflection of My Soul : Unplugged

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As I wrote this quote last evening, my eyes were welled with unshed tears. Though I love quotes a lot, I never thought that something would ever, move me so deeply; that I’d write one myself one day. Perhaps, that’s the beauty of life. It presents you with bounteous surprises.

The things that stuck me to the core yesterday were :

1. It happens for a reason

2. Far or near, everyone you meet, becomes a part of you in some ways.

Let me share how these two things are beautifully intertwined. My friend Donna shared a post of a 1000 piece puzzle. It amazed me entirely as to how can a human mind solve such a massive and complex puzzle with such intricacies. Till date I had this question looming over my mind. (This bit of information might appear something out of the blue right now, but read till the very end)

Continue reading

Rhyming Poem : A Precious Present !

My name is Himali
I’m a writer of sorts
I have my own blog
To express many thoughts
My Posts seem quite popular
My messages are clear
And that’s why I’m smiling
You all seem so near.

Continue reading

Masked Smiles…

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You look at my pictures,
Miles away, seeing me smile,
You feel content and delight..

How can you miss to see,
The searching quest in my eyes ?
The mist hid behind the smiling mask ?
The questioning gaze ?
The tiny flames of hope in them ?
And the sparkles of love evergreen ?

Continue reading

Love – Hate !

love-over-hate1

My friends Rob from The V-Pub, Karuna from Simply Karuna & Aplis7 from AplisPoetry have nominated me to participate in the Love/Hate challenge. They are not only wonderful bloggers but also amazing friends, I am blessed to have met. Thank you so much for nominating me for this challenge. It gave me an opportunity to sit back and ponder upon my likes and dislikes. Here are the rules:

  • List 10 things that you love.
  • List 10 things that you hate.
  • Nominate fellow bloggers to take the challenge

So let me start with the things I LOVE ❤ :

Continue reading

Oh Edward Cullen Mine, Can We Start with Forever ?

Himzz Twilight

Blissfully aware of the dark side,
Of your moon, my love,
I am falling deep,
Deep in the steep valleys of your love..

Blissfully aware of the venom,
Which can sap the life away,
From my fragile human soul..

Continue reading

Reflection of My Soul…

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No longer do I speak to you,
No longer do I meet you..
The last time I saw you,
You looked happy and content,
Wrapped in her arms so warm..

Your eyes spoke,
The poignant truths,
Your lips couldn’t whisper in my ears..

Continue reading

ऐ हवाऐ उसे मेरा पेगाम पहु़ंचा देना (With English Translation)

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ऐ हवाऐ उसे मेरा पेगाम पहु़ंचा देना…

ऐ हवाऐ उसे मेरा पेगाम पहु़ंचा देना,
आज शाम उसे छूकर जब तुम गुज़रो,
उसके बाल ज़रा मेरी और से सहला देना…
उसके कंधे जो बोज़ से हो दबे,
उन्हें ज़रा मेरी और से हल्का कर देना…

Continue reading