"There are moments in life, moments when you know you've crossed a bridge. Your old life is over." – Eddie Morra (Bradley Cooper), "Limitless"
Moving to India was my bridge.
For seven consecutive years, I had been obsessed with India and its profoundly rich and diverse culture. I watched the shows, I studied the language, I wore their traditional garments and did just about everything to adopt their lifestyle habits and exemplify their values. It was my dream to study, live and work there for many, many years.
In my final year of high school, it became a reality when I was awarded a full scholarship to study my undergraduate degree at India's top private university. I was ecstatic beyond words. I went on to pursue my dreams and it's led me to unleash my full potential and live my best life.
As I reflect back on my remarkable journey thus far, here are the top 10 life lessons I've learned along the way:
Never give up on your dreams
I waited seven years for my dreams to come true, and had I missed this window of opportunity, I would have waited for seven more!
Give it your all
A journey to success never comes with a handbook — you never know when and how much time/money/energy/resources to invest. I didn't have a clue, but I did know something: that I was always going to give it my all and nothing less.
Hang on to what feeds you
What drove me day after day? India, technology, community service and blogging. I could never forget or overlook these factors no matter what. They each played their part in molding me to become the person I am today.
Do what’s best for you
Something which I do often is take advice from ten different people, and then end up trusting my own intuition. Hey, no one knows you like you do, right?
Trust your gut — you won't be disappointed.
Do what makes you happy
If what you're doing makes you happy, then why care what anyone else thinks? Be with those you love, smile more and pursue your passion unyieldingly.
Ignore the haters
You'll come across critics and naysayers almost every time you set out to accomplish something. It's important to always remember your potential and never let a bunch of haters tell you otherwise.
Stay true to yourself
You may come across people who will try to change you and influence their bad habits on you. You can't let it happen — not even once — because it has a serious rippling effect.
Remember your core values, and stick to them. It's really that simple.
Give back to the community
I say this often and I can't stress it enough — there's no greater joy than giving back to your community. Your community always needs you!
Do volunteering work and make a difference in someone's life… after all, time is the most precious gift we can give to others.
Believe in others
I wouldn't be where I am today without the people who instilled their faith in me from the get-go. It's such a powerful thing to believe in someone and support their goals.
You can empower them with only your words and it goes a long way (trust me).
Failure and/or rejection isn't the end of the world. How did I manage to get where I am today? I left my comfort zone. I took a chance. I risked the good things I had and bargained on the unknown.
It's scary at times but you know what? It's always been worth it.