Day 5: #1000WordsofSummer

an open book with a glass of ginger ale behind it and lantern lights in the background

Today I woke up incredibly energised, with the kind of inner glow that comes when you spend a week eating clean, exercising, doing weights and cardio, having your micro nutrients and vitamin D3. There is a lightness in your step, like you’ve woken up from a long slumber and are ready to conquer the world. 

In this new hope filled morning, I thought about this year, which is at a halfway mark. So I thought in today’s writing, I’d take stock of how 2024 is going. What I’ve learnt. What I hope to accomplish. 


The human mind, and our individual sense of self, often gets deeply attached to the people whom we love – our friends, family, innermost circle of people. So when something happens, and they hurt us, or refuse to see us, deliberately misunderstand us, it attacks our self worth. Maybe that’s not true for everyone, but it’s true for me. The good opinion of my people is very important to me. Their respect toward me is very important. 

That is why, when people closest to you treat you like trash, it hurts the most. Because somewhere, we begin to think of ourselves the same way they treated us – like trash.

Earlier this year, someone I love did something deeply shitty to me. That is the oldest inciting incident in the world. 

It left me bitter, disoriented, shocked for weeks. But through it, with the help of Gurshawn, I found out how to detach other people’s actions towards you from your own sense of self. How, a self-aware sense of belief in your own ability to live your life on your terms, can become an unstoppable force in your life. 

2. Healthy boundaries

I am a very social person. I consider myself to be who I am because of the people in my life and I try to stay very available to everyone around me, taking care of their emotional needs over mine. 

But this has its limits, and all social batteries have a tipping point; when the option of saying no vanishes, because you have been there for everyone at all times. 

Reclaiming that narrative, the option to say no, to put yourself first some of the time and not feel guilty about it, has been a difficult but important learning of the year. 

3. Believe in yourself sooner than later 

Back during my MA in Digital Humanities, for our HCI/UI/UX project, I had designed a low-fidelity wireframe of a browser plugin called Poirot (2020). It’s job would be to scan the web-page you were on for any AI generated content, fake news, suspicious language and such other content manipulation techniques – words, images, ads, while also telling you the original source of the content used. 

I knew it was a solid idea (with tweaks required of course), especially on the back of the digital acceleration during the pandemic. But instead of talking to experts about it, presenting it on any official forum, putting it out in public, or talking about it, I let it pass as a cool but silly college project. 

Now, after Generative AI has swept the world, I see versions of this coming up everywhere. And I think to myself, I thought it first. I know that does not matter. Ideas are worthless. But had I had a little more conviction in me, had I been less afraid to speak up about my ideas, I would have a cool product on my hands. 

Lack of self belief will be the worst enemy to action. And without action, you are not going to achieve your dreams. 

This year, I have been working hard to speak up: by putting myself on social media, by writing more, by engaging with the world without the fear of judgment. Pursuing my vision exactly as is, not worried that someone will find it uncool or unglamorous. 

Will my life turn around because of this? We will wait and find out. 

4. Embrace new connections without “what if” 

When you are a 30-year-old single woman, every new guy you meet, every guy friend you tell your friends about, invariably gets attached to the question of, “And is there potential for him to be more?”

But this year, I have decided that we will not let conversations go there. It’s pointless, and makes you project the lack of romantic connection in your life, to a friendship that may or may not be otherwise. You want something, so anyone who SEEMS to remotely be an option to offer it, you immediately try and fit into the jigsaw puzzle of your life. Don’t do it. It only hinders the growth of an actual connection. What shape that connection takes, let time tell you. Not expectations. 

5. Protect, cherish, nurture your village 

I first thought about my people, and my ideal life as a village filled with my people back in 2020 in a conversation with Amy Duggan, teacher exemplar and friend of my heart. Then, a couple of years later, that idea emerged in a more solid form when the folks at C4E began to talk about building the village. I admit I don’t fully agree or understand the shape it takes, the founding tenets and philosophies and values that it is built with. 

But the conversations around it have led me back to my own ideas of it, and for now, I have come to realize that whether we define it or not, we already exist in our own little villages. Friends you can rely on to vent to, support you, open their doors for you, families in which you have the dignity of existence, the right to fight and rebel and claim your space, networks who take an extra hour of the day to listen to your business problems, your house staff who lessens the emotional labour of managing your household, the friendly postman who delivers all your letters no matter how many homes you change, your trust vegetable and fruits vendor who will never give you produce that’s gone bad, the mango seller who has seen you grow up because he’s been delivering mangoes to your house for 20 years, the on-call driver who always responds, the local medical store. 

One of the key takeaways from this year has been the need to protect your own village. Stand by it. Lean on it. Celebrate it. And make everyone in it feel stronger, better, happier. 

The next 6 months 

While it’s been a good year, where I’ve been able to reacquaint with myself and my world, there’s a lot more I’d like to do as the year progresses. 

1. Successfully finish marketing projects for C4E

This year I started my second big girl job on a project for C4E, way above my comfort zone and possibly even abilities. But I really want to make it a success and prove my worth to myself. 

2. Publish successfully 

We started a publishing house. Our first book took a year to get to the release stage, the second took two months. I want to make sure both these books are sold out, and reach as many readers as possible. 

3. Maintain consistency 

Now that I have some money coming in, I’m very stress-free about a big part of my life, and have been able to work with focus consistently on all things. I just hope to keep that through the year. 

4. Develop a P3 MVP 

I’ve finally landed on THE ultimate productised idea for P3, and I have to act on this faster than I have other ideas, faster than its expiry date, which, as far as ideas go, is not long. 

5. Make time for romantic relationships

It seems a little silly to have this as a goal, very arranged-marriage energy. But as I grow older, I realise that my life ha found its rhythm. My friends, my family, my work, my projects and passions – all my time, and even the space in my heart, has been allocated and divided neatly. To make space and time for someone new is a matter of intention going forward. So I am putting it out as a goal.

I read somewhere that if you worry about being heard, you’ll never find your voice. 

Through the rest of this year. I hope to regain mine. 

Want to talk more about it? Tweet to me @pramankapranam or email me at prakrut[at]purplepencilproject[dot]com