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Not Unoccupied, Just Chilling So, I officially completed my education (for the time being), and got my beautiful degree in my hands. But I had not been able to make any real progress in getting a job.

As a result, for the past few months, every time someone asked me "what are you up to these days?" I'd say "bilkul farigh" "I've got nothing to do" "Kuch nahi kar rahi" (not doing anything.)

Farigh means you're not occupied, you're time isn't occupied. You are "farigh" after you've done whatever needed doing. But you're not suppose to stay farigh, not for very long, anyway. "Staying" farigh has a bit of a negative connotation.

It wasn't really true that I had nothing to do (other than finding a job) and that I had been doing nothing. I'd written and submitted two research manuscripts to be published in journals, one of which had been accepted, and I was looking at the possibility of submitting more manuscripts for publication.

This isn't exactly a walk in the park.

Then, there were my health and fitness goals (that needed attention); knowledge expansion goals, and the just-having-fun goals.

I'd been slowly moving towards all these. But all the while I'd been saying "I've got nothing to do" I realized later, that I'd been downplaying my accomplishments and putting myself down and using those words "farigh", "kuch nahi" (nothing)...empty sad words.

And then one day again someone asked me that question "kya ho raha hai aaj kal?" ("what's going on these days?") I answered with "farigh hoon". And I felt downright depressed, sad, disappointed and even a little bit hurt.

Then a few days later I was watching a reality show a singer who had been away for a long while was making a comeback. In the way of discussing the new image she might take on, she said that for the past few years she had been living in mediocrity. The person she was conversing with responded "don't say that. You were chilling out, that's what you should say" They all laughed.

It made me smile and it hit me just right. I decided that's what I should be saying as well. Getting a job was important, but that isn't all there was to my life. I repeated that idea in my head "I'm just chilling these days".

The next time I was asked "what are you up to?" I replied "just chilling" and actually felt good about saying it. This small event made a point in my mind. Words that we use when we think or converse are powerful, because they don't just convey meaning but they also convey "emotions" and "attitudes"

You see even the subtle differences in words can give different meanings. "farigh" made me feel useless, "chilling" made me feel like I was having fun. Unlike being 'farigh' when you're chilling, you're not actually unoccupied, you're purposely avoiding 'constructive' activity. Staying chilled has a purpose, being "farigh" doesn't.

I wouldn't go as far as to say that this small discovery completely turned my life around. But it did bring on a slight change of attitude. It did help me get a bit of peace of mind, which ultimately you need to maintain, if you want to achieve your goals. So now I recommend it.

Choose your words carefully, whether thinking in your head or talking out loud with someone. Alter your words, or find the right word in a different language; see if this changes anything for you. Have your words bring out the right feeling not just a meaning. That's all I have to say today.

Now I'm off to chill. relaxing chilling