Answer by Rishi Dev Ratan:
It takes time. Lots of time. But definitely lesser than you are imagining!
I read through the answers below. Most of them have given a sort of 'fatherly' advice. But I would like to take some examples from my life. Hope you 'take the time' to read through it all –
When I was 21, I was
- Just finished my Masters in the UK, but had to come back as there were no job opportunities there
- Took a job in my home town. I was earning so less, it would take my whole 3 months salary to pay off just the interest on my educational loan
- I added on 20 kgs in the one year I was there. I was already overweight, weighed 96 kgs when I left. When I came back, I was a whopping 116 kgs
The transformation didn't happen over night! I procrastinated, hogged at things I could just do at home (like you mentioned), browsed the internet for hours, slept for more than 9 hours everyday, etc. you could imagine!
However, I started doing things slowly.
- I joined a gym
- Started putting more effort at work
- Started going to the gym early in the morning than my preferred evening timings (Everyday, I get up at 5.15 am, rain or shine)
- Joined an online 1 year analytics course to keep my weekends busy (Market Research & Data Analytics Course from MICA)
- Most importantly (which I never actually planned) – Met with my friends and peers once a week, just to chill. This is important as it gives you time to unwind. I did it without realizing. But I am thankful I did it
I did not get up one morning and say to myself "Ok, let's do it!!" .. Big Nope! No! No! No!
I did them gradually. Failed. Again, One step at a time. Failed. I desperately pushed myself to do it.
Gym – I trained for marathons to help me lose weight. In that process, I completed 3 half marathons and I've lost 40 kgs in 8 months. I know!! 🙂
Work – I put in the right attitude & hard work at work. I now earn twice what I earned when I initially joined. That's a 100% appraisal in 2 years. I can now pay off one Edu. loan EMI with one months salary itself 🙂
Online course – Finished my online course with 'A' grade 🙂
All of this was definitely not easy. But I wanted it so badly, I did what ever I could to get there. My parents were also stressed. You have to understand that it takes a toll on them too. We come from such a cultural back ground. My parents were also on my back, but once I started taking baby steps, they slowly backed off. Now that I've done all these things on my own, they are completely trusting and give me my personal space.
I still haven't done it all. I'm 23, still live with my parents. My dad helps me with my loan. still go to the gym, the same job, have the same friends. But now … I love it all!
Remember to get up every morning and look at least once in the mirror before you start your day. You'll know what I am talking about once you start doing something. It helps a lot to get motivated from within. The ego, low self esteem and laziness you talk about will all wither away as you start doing stuff. It's all a matter of time.
You are who you are. You are what you run. You are what you eat. You are what you achieve. You are what you tell yourself. You are who you look in the mirror. You are your own god! It takes lots of time and a little perspective!
All the best!
Edit: I was reading through the comments and came across two questions a lot of people are asking –
1. How did you train for your marathon –
I initially trained only to lose weight, not to run!. I never dreamed I would be able to actually run those distances. I joined SPARRC Institute in Chennai and trained directly under Dr. Kannan Pugazhendi. He guided me and helped me with my running. he registered on my behalf. I haven't even paid him back!
I ran my first half marathon just after training for 5 months.
To sum it up, It took a lot of dieting and a hell of a lot of running. I trained for 7 days a week.
Here is a pic of me with Dr. Pugazhendi 🙂 … I had just finished my 21K run during the Chennai Wipro Marathon 2014. I finished in 2 hrs and 11 minutes.
2. How come I finished my Masters at 21!
My dad wanted me to complete some form of higher education before I started working. He was afraid that once I started working, I might not be able to focus on studying again. And it was very important that I do another degree. I finished my Bachelor of Commerce from Loyola College when I was 20. I immediately applied for a few programs and got into the MSc. Accounting & Finance Program in Warwick University, UK. It was a one year program. So, I was 21 when I finished the program and came back home.
I took a lot of inspiration from a lot of people. I hope I can give some to the people who need it now. 🙂
All the best!