I’ve spent my last decade building stuff, novels, TV Channels, startups. Some projects have worked, some haven’t. But I’ve grown tremendously with each of them. I think creating things in this world is among the best things you can do with your life. You touch many while transforming yourself through the ups, downs, failures and rejections that are inherent in the creator’s path.
I wrote my first novel at age 28. I wish I’d done it earlier. Writing changed my life. Post writing my first novel, I realized I’d poured everything I knew into writing the book. I had to live more to write more. So I traveled, experimented, and gradually came more and more into living a life which was authentic to me. Since then, I’ve written multiple novels, been rejected sixty-one times, published a few times, and come out with a strong theses on how to write a good book.
I was 39 when I left my job as Discovery CEO to start WhiteHat Jr. I was full of doubt. Would I be able to succeed at a tech startup as a non-tech founder? Would I be able to raise funding as a middle-aged entrepreneur? Lots of questions. For good reason! Building a start-up is the hardest thing I’ve done. And the ups and downs didn’t end even post the successful acquisition with Byju’s.
I’d been pulled to Eastern philosophy from college. But my mother’s slow, painful decline from cancer made this quest very personal and urgent. I took a year off to live in an ashram and learnt yoga and meditation as a beginner.
In 2008, I quit my job to travel for six months and landed back in the US on the day Lehman Brothers collapsed. My savings evaporated. A seven year old relationship ended. I was sleeping on my sister’s couch. At 30, I was broke, single, and unemployed, not the outcome I expected from life a decade post graduation from a top B-School.
I eventually bounced back. And later, that first major failure liberated me to come more and more into myself. Since then, I’ve taken many sabbaticals, detours and U-Turns, and haven’t regretted too many of them!