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Shivjeet Kullar

The author is a legendary ad man who has won over a 100 awards in his career. He is also an author, a novelist a playwright and song writer. Now he has founded the unusual and powerful website which helps power other websites, brands and businesses ahead

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As You Are

And everyone trying to Change you. Mould you. Improve you. Modify you. Motivate you. Push you. Energise you. Exorcise you. Compare you.

Photo Credit : Shutterstock


I still remember back in Mayo there was this PT instructor Mr Bajwa. In the middle of  winter when the temperature was minus 1000 degrees he would assemble us all in the middle of some Godforsaken field and make us stand at attention. We would all be in double underwear and triple sweaters but he would be in a vest.

In some inane routine that is followed by military and exercise type people all over the world he would make us do some pointless push-ups then stand up at attention until he uttered the golden words ‘as you were’!

Which means that we could stand in a relaxed pose.

However I remember thinking ‘No no wait, I was in a warm blanket dreaming of Farah Fawcett Majors in a beach, so why can’t that be ‘As I Was’ – because that just makes a whole lot of  sense. Better to be looking at Farah in a sleeveless swimsuit in a California Summer, than a Terminator Type Sardar in a sleeveless vest in a Rajasthan Winter!’

And that I guess is when the As You Are philosophy started forming.

Why is someone always telling us to win friends?

Or to prioritise our goals in a systemic manner?

Or to think positively?

Or to stand up tall and be brave?

If only it were that simple.

The self-help industry is worth 11.1 billion dollars.

Now that’s a lot of people helping themselves … to your money.

There are books, DVDs, websites, workshops, motivational sessions, posters, courses, refresher courses, even more refresherer courses – you name it, they have it. But let’s face it. Do all these really help you? From what I know, the effects of a three-day course lasts for three days. Then you get on with the rest of your life.

You should have guessed it when you were pushed out into this world by your mother’s warning scream. The lights were very bright, the room was very cold, weird huge giants were looking at you … and then someone took out a knife and cut the only cord you had with your mother.

You were desperate to go back to As You Were.

But it was too late buddy. You should have thought of that when you were a sperm who had just read a self-help book. Running. Racing. Puffing. Panting. To be the first to fertilise that egg. You should have just stayed as you were.

And ladies – who told you to accept that over enthusiastic sperm. You should have just swerved aside and let him hurtle into darkness.

But no. You wanted to Excel. Win. Achieve. And now look where you are! Hurtling from Womb to Tomb. With no way of going back.

And everyone trying to Change you. Mould you. Improve you. Modify you. Motivate you. Push you. Energise you. Exorcise you. Compare you.

But tell me something. Does anyone really change because someone else tells them to? I don’t think so.

I think that you change when someone let’s you be AYA … As You Are.

Letting you relax, without judging you, and gently funnily surprisingly unexpectedly caringly plants the right thoughts.

You can’t go back to that womb.

But you can be born again in many small ways. As yourself.

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magazine 1 september 2018 opinion

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