Letter No 94 - I found my power

Dear friend

I get hurt easily. I cry easily. I am sensitive to what people around me are thinking and feeling.


I am soft and carefree. I rarely fight back or retort when insulted - I don't even feel the need to. I give a lot - emotionally and otherwise - I can be generous like crazy. I quickly speak about my mistakes and weaknesses, something allowing others an opening to take advantage.

But this is my true nature. It mostly works really well for me because I am so deeply secure, that I don't need to fight back, or stake my claim. I know where I stand, what I am, and nothing anyone says or does can change that.

This is my power.

I am beginning to understand how powerful this power really is.

Innocence is powerful.


In my playful innocence I am able to make friends, empathise easily, find creative ideas, innovate, ease up tension, settle disputes, handle complex situations with ease and enjoy the entire journey.


But there is something that steals my power from me. It puts me out of character.

Then I get easily irritable. I snap and retort. I become sharp and aggressive. I lose my patience. I start thinking short term and one sided. I lose my ability to think and execute and make things happen.

I get insecure.

I start behaving in a way that is not me - unnecessarily hard and ‘tough’.

In the last few years I have understood what triggers me to behave that way.

You want to know?


One word - stress.

Stress makes my lose my innocence. It takes away my playfulness. I makes me much less powerful that I really am.

And there is only underlying thing that causes stress. I.e., the thought that says - "I am not good enough" or "I may not survive this". It is a basic survival instinct in all of us. Once it creeps in, it creates insecurity and desperation. It renders us powerless and weak.

As long as I am cool, in my innocent and playful self, I can handle the biggest chaos, and win the highest goals. I have done that several times in my life. Innocence is my real power.

But the key is to learn to stay relaxed. To retain my innocence and playfulness.

Children are innocent and playful. Nothing stops them from what they want. They laugh and cry easily. They don't hold on. Children are powerful.


In engineering material science, concrete is said to be under stress when there is weight on it. A compressive force creates stress. Any material can bear a certain amount of stress (weight) and then it will crack and eventually give way. The columns that hold up our homes and bridges and monuments are stress tested several times. They are designed to withstand multiple times the stress that they may actually incur in their lifetime.

So, is stress good or bad?

The answer is clear - stress is good. What good is a concrete pillar if it cannot bear the load it's meant to carry?

But it's only good upto a point. There is a threshold. And beyond that stress is always destructive.

The key is to learn to stay relaxed even in stressful situations.

The key is to expand our ability to carry load and not cave in.

Then as human beings, there is no limit to what kind of life we can live.


A few years ago at Let's Enterprise I ran a session for students - "To relax is a life skill". Probably it is the most important one of them all. Especially for ambitious people. Because if you are ambitious you will certainly need to carry heavy weight. That will stress you. But if you learn to relax through it, your capacity to create and enjoy your life will expand.

So relax.

However, being relaxed like any other skill, comes with practise!

But how?


I have outlined for myself things that stress me and things that relax me in four boxes. I hit upon this framework just today, and I believe you will find it very interesting.

Here goes:

1. Things that stress me but I need to do more of
Managing money, difficult conversations, making a 'personal brand' image, saying no to people who are not aligned with my values and intent, prioritisation of where to invest my time, being true to myself even if some people don’t like it

2. Things that stress me and I should do less of
Trying to be 'tough', Pretending to be what I'm not, manipulation and short-term thinking’s, trying to manage other people work, forcing discipline on others, making judgement of results, unhealthy competition, toxicity and gossip

3. Things that relax me and I should do more of
Creative pursuits, being a maker, seeing the good in people, working towards a larger vision, knowing myself, waking up early in the morning, workouts, pampering loved ones, experiments in the kitchen, empowering people as a coach, working with awesome teams, creating market leading strategies

4. Things that relax me but I should moderate
Food binges, late night chill-outs, watching shows,

Wow. Writing that down was very empowering for me.

Thank you for reading until here.

Innocence is my power. There is immense strength in being soft and gentle and pliable.

May you learn to stay relaxed, and may you find YOUR power.

In fratitude,