IKIGAI – A year of Quitting

Today marks 1-year of me quitting the corporate rat-race and doing away with the addiction of a salary.   The idea behind this was to now spend more time in doing things that I really wanted to do.  I had a very satisfying job as an Equity Analyst and the only role I ever had in the 15 years of my career.  However, what comes with a corporate job or a salary is a lot of Admin/travel/procedural things and tasks which have little contribution to knowledge or growth. Something that i did not appreciate and therefore quit.

I had figured out my IKIGAI and plan to devote the next few years of my life to things that I truly love: Teaching, Poker, Theatre and Social service and to live healthier and travel widely.

The first one year of Quitting has been mildly successful in terms of goals – COVID did throw a spanner in my plans though. On the health front, I am lighter by 10kgs and there is scope for another 10kgs . 

Travel – As crazy as crazy can get – Got deported

On travel front things have been very exciting until COVID, I kicked off my travel with Amritsar and loved the city food heritage and the Golden temple is something that I always wanted to revisit. In January-2020 I took off for one of the most Exciting 15-day trip to Norway and Svalbard for the Northern lights.  Longyearbyen in Svalbard is the Northernmost town in the world and we were given a mesmerizing farewell by the Northern lights right above our Hotel.  The trip will never be forgotten because I landed back in Norway/Tromso without a valid Visa and then began the process of deportation – An helluva of experience with one of the friendliest police I can ever imagine.

Instead of Teaching – Focussed on learning

Focus on learning/teaching, took a very surprise turn when I got opportunity to be part of a 15-day rail trip around the country with 400 youth as part of Jagriti Yatra.  A very enriching experience and will recommend it to all youth, A trip that will help in motivating you towards your dreams.  I continue to read and understand more of human behaviour and have started blogging to connect them with poker and investing.  Writing is a good way to help one understand things better and thats the entire objective of my blogs.  https://vikashmantri.com/2019/12/24/jagriti-yatra-day-zero/

Poker – The lockdown BOOM

Poker started off with a bang post this year , with me getting a 3rd position in the Baazi Poker tour Main Event for whopping Rs. 1700k- the only Live event I played this year.   Other than this was able to ship Indian online poker championship (IOPC) PLO Highroller for 700k in and 2nd in Pokerstars Sunday Highroller for 350k this sunday.  The tourney scores are a pleasant surprise as I am not a tourney player and largely a cash game player.  With the lockdown from March – Poker industry saw a boom in terms of action, which meant poker players had the busiest of schedules and work hours before them. l was lucky to cash in well into the Lockdown boom in Poker.  With lockdown ending I have taken a semi break from poker and focus is on the improve the game (Something I talk more . but dont do enough).

Investing – it’s the most tricky.

I wasn’t ready for a roller coaster for the markets and the recent crack definitely has had a big dent on my investments .  While, having seen the 2008 crisis very closely I thought I was prepared but that not would the case because I sincerely believe “This time its different”.  Understanding the nature of Covid impact on markets is tricky and I have No opinion. I am erring on the side of caution and reduced my equity exposure.  While, it is said one should be greedy when others are fearful , the problem is I do not see enough people who are fearful of Covid-19 given the swift recovery in the markets.  I wish the markets/economy/business do well and while I will miss some of the uptick, I am ok with it, if the world ends up safer.

Theatre – Watched a lot of plays.  Covid has ensured practising it will be some time away. I have been a big fan of watching movies on opening weekends and also reviewing. That hobby looks like in for a change.

Social service – Focus shifted from enabling long term changes in society in field of education to the near term challenge of migrant labourers. Did whatever little I could do. 

Plans for the next year are hazy with the Semi-lockdown . Focus will be on learning.

Signing off with a beautiful lines by Harivansh Raiji Bachchan.

ऐसा नहीं है कि मुझमें कोई ऐब नहीं है पर सच कहता हूं मुझमे कोई फरेब नहीं है
जल जाते हैं मेरे अंदाज़ से मेरे दुश्मन क्यूंकि एक मुद्दत से मैंने न मोहब्बत बदली और न दोस्त बदले..!!


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