My Planned Funeral – Part 2

Amrut Deshmukh

In my quest to search for the ‘Why’ of my life, I picked Simon Sinek’s “Start with Why”. Besides that, I started watching a lot of Ted talks. One day I was watching a talk by the man behind Khan Academy. He calls himself Salman Khan. This man changed my approach towards money.

He quit his job as a Hedge fund manager and decided to use his skills and passion for mathematics in a unique way. He created hundreds of videos on Algebra, Calculus, Trigonometry and uploaded them all on YouTube for free, for free!!!

He didn’t bother about the revenue. He said it gave a huge social return on investment. This concept of ‘social return on investment’ excited me. I soon realized my three start-ups failed because the primary focus was on the money, not passion. I made a firm decision that whatever I do henceforth, wealth maximization will not be the primary aim.

At the end of the talk, Bill Gates walked up the stage and offered Salman Khan a cheque of $1 million. I realized these multi-millionaires look for people who are passionate about something. They know that investing in crazy passionate people will generate big bucks.

And that was it…. I decided to become a social entrepreneur. At least, a part of my WHY was now clear.

The following day, Sudeep Manek, a CA friend of mine called me and said, “Dude, let’s go to watch Bahubali”. I replied, “Are you mad! My three startups have failed and you are talking about watching a movie! Crazy!” Sudeep said, “Take a chill pill bro, I’ll pay for you. I replied, “Awesome!! I’m in”.  You see, once a CA, always a CA.

We reached the multiplex theatre 15 minutes before the showtime. So, to kill time, I summarized Stephen Covey’s  Seven Habits of Highly Effective People within 15 minutes.

He loved my summarisation and said, “Amrut, you love reading. You have read countless books. I want to read too but unfortunately; I can’t make the time for it. So, why don’t you make short summaries of the books you read and share those with me so that your reading habit benefits me….

My reading habit can benefit others?…. It was exciting. I loved the idea.

The movie started but I couldn’t concentrate. I’d failed for 3 years to keep my new year resolution of reading one book a week. Now, if I commit to people, I will be under a social obligation to deliver. Moreover, it will give a huge social return on investment. My reading habit can benefit others? – I found the “Why” of my life!

I became restless. During the interval, I lied to my friend and left the theatre. I pulled an all-nighter searching on the internet if someone was executing this. It was that I found no one doing this.

I decided to execute the idea before the excitement fades away. But then I realized, I am a CA, a non-IT guy who doesn’t know how to develop a website or a mobile app. “Should I hire an IT professional?”, I asked myself. There was a big hole in my pocket due to my failed start-ups and as a result, hiring wasn’t an option. I was stuck.

The doorbell rang. It was the courier guy. He looked tired. So, I offered him a glass of water. Handing over a white-coloured envelope, he left with a smile. I opened the envelope and it was a job offer for Financial Controller in Dubai. I asked myself, “When did I apply for it?” I remembered throwing my CV on the face of Sudeep and telling him to burn it. I called him and learned that he never burned it. He used his network to get me a job in Dubai.

I now had two paths to choose from. One led to a life full of luxury, wealth and security while the other was full of uncertainty, sacrifices, and frugal life. Are you keel to know which path I chose? If yes, I will see you again next week. Don’t forgot to subscribe if you aren’t a subscriber. Till then, happy reading and bye-bye!

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