Gratitude doesn't make you weak

Gratitude doesn't make you weak

Contrary to popular belief, gratitude isn't weakness

I love working from cafes as I am sure I would’ve said a hundred times before. Last Saturday, I was sitting happily sipping my coffee and getting some work done when I noted three guys with notebooks talking (loudly). The reason I noted them was that they were talking at a decibel level which was higher than my approved level for a cafe. That’s right, my approved level. Well, it is a level I decided as the peak for people to talk in a cafe.

Not that the cafe had any such rules but it indeed irritated me. If they wanted to chat loudly they should’ve found some other place, I thought. I was about to reach out to my headphones, which, on more than one occasion has been my saviour when I realised it was a meeting about some sort of pyramid scheme or multi-level marketing. I carry my headphones everywhere I go so that I can shut off the world if I need to. So, as I was getting my headphones on, I heard one of the guys, who seemed to lead the charge… Well, before we get into it, let me describe them so that you get a better picture.

Guy no.1: Unsuspecting Victim. Seems like a guy who has a lot of expectations from this meeting. He was probably brainwashed by Guy no.2 and was probably expecting to get rich soon. Spoiler: He’s the one who gets screwed in the end.

Guy no.2: Guy who’s knee neck deep in the scheme, needs some unsuspecting victim for his own profit. Brainwashes the poor guy promising a meeting with some hotshot who’s made it big in the scheme. Also is happiest of the three since he’s gonna be the guy with the biggest benefit from the meeting. Also gets screwed, but not as much as the first guy.

Guy no.3: The hotshot who made it big in the scheme. He was simply one of the lucky ones to join early in the scheme and has obviously made some money. Of course many unsuspecting victims to his credit. He is the go to guy for starters like Guy no.2 to lure more people in. Genuinely makes money out of this.

Here is my view from where I was sitting in my favourite cafe in Bangalore. See those chairs in the foreground? That’s where they were sitting.

The Roastery by Vishnu Padmanabhan on

Now that you have the stage set, let me move on.

Before the conversation started, Guy no.1 and Guy no.2 were sitting and having coffee and then Guy no.3 makes an entry like a hero or a rock star. Guys 1 and 2 stand up with respect for him, shaking his hands. In this case, Guy no.3 is probably in his early (or late, no idea!) the 20s. After exchanging pleasantries, Guy no.3 makes his opening statement that pisses me off instantly now if not earlier.

“I worked as a software engineer for six years like a slave. Then I found this business and quit my job and now am an entrepreneur”

The other two guys had their eyes gleaming as he went on and on about the perks his newfound “career” has given him. At this point I thought I no longer care for this, people have their lives and I am not here to judge them. I have been guy 1 at some point in my life so I can understand. Thanks to my headphones, I was able to continue with my work.

But the thing I kept thinking was that some of us tend to think that being grateful is a sign of weakness. Why does a day job that gave you months worth of resources to live and eat suddenly seem like an evil thing from which you were just waiting to run away? Why do we forget that how much ever we hated that job, it is the same job that paid you every month?

Instead of bitching about your day job and making it look like a villain why couldn’t we just say something along the lines of:

“I realised I wanted different things from life and hence got into this business”

See? Cleaner and you don’t sound like you are cribbing about something. Don’t get me wrong, I am not claiming that I am perfect. I used to do this at one point, but I have since decided to stay away from cribbing and take responsibility for everything that happens in my life. It is difficult, but it is doable.

Gratitude doesn’t make you look weak. Saying thank you doesn’t make you look like someone did a favour and you owe them back because you weren’t capable. Being grateful helps you appreciate life. It helps you take control of your life and move forward. Being all crabby and whiny about life doesn’t help. Be grateful for everything you have and if you aren’t happy with any aspect of your life, change it.

The responsibility is yours and please-o-please stop cribbing!

Now, Mr Guy 3, if you feel that you were slaving as a software engineer, you are just being a dick. But I appreciate the fact that you decided to move on and find something else, but don’t make that first job a villain in your effort of trying to become a hero. Be grateful you got that first job bruh! 😏

Image: Photo on