One life – Why so serious?

Brood over life and you'll simply exist. Learn to celebrate it, and you'll really live

Happy woman

One life. Why so serious? This catch line of the latest advertisement for Honda’s newest car, Jazz, leaves me smiling each time I read it. Amidst the daily grind, this campaign comes as a breath of fresh air that reminds us of something invaluable: life is not serious. We make it so.

The copywriter of the campaign must be a wise soul, as must be the brand manager of Jazz and anyone else who’s behind the campaign. I reckon they’ve all had a glimpse into the truth. Or they were inspired by American author Elbert Hubbard, who once said, “Don’t take life too seriously. You’ll never get out of it alive.”

The truth is that seriousness is ugly, gloomy, and boring. And life is beautiful, happy, and exciting. Life is the antithesis of seriousness.

Indeed, we have one life and it’s this one. Whether you believe in reincarnation or not, the fact remains that right now, this life is all you have. To do full justice to it, you must live it to the fullest. Every moment of it.

Human beings are the only species that have the gift of being able to choose happiness. Ironically, we are the most serious living variety on this planet. Have you seen animals, birds and other creatures being serious? They can’t be serious because they live in the moment.

Seriousness is not the virtue it’s made out to be. The opposite of seriousness is not flippancy…it’s joy. But most people are serious because they think being otherwise is being frivolous and showing disrespect to life. I beg to differ. In my opinion, unless we celebrate life and remain joyful, we are not respecting life and all its gifts.

The fairy tale ending, “and they lived happily ever after” is not meant to be in stories alone. It is, in fact, the sole purpose of life. Those who stay in the state of happiness, even as they deal with life’s challenges, are the ones who have understood this secret. The rest end up spending a large part of their lives in sombre moods, reflecting on their life’s purpose, when all along their purpose is calling out to them loudly.

I have decided to cut the Honda Jazz print advertisement and pin it at strategic locations in my office, my car and my home so that each time I get serious about life, it stops me. Why don’t you do the same?

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Manoj Khatri
Manoj Khatri is a highly experienced wellbeing consultant. He is also a writer-editor and has written on topics ranging from strategic marketing and business management to art, culture and even philosophy. His more than 1250 published stories—articles, interviews, full-length features—have appeared in some of the leading newspapers and magazines of India. A certified cognitive behavioural therapist, he works as a personal counsellor too. He is the author of What a thought!, a critically acclaimed self-improvement book based on powerful ideas of some of the greatest thought leaders. Manoj runs Complete Wellbeing and believes that "peace begins with me".



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