A Bend in the Road by Nicholas Sparks was the book which was due to return in two days. Hurrying with my chores, I occupied my favourite cozy corner in my house. Of course, with a mug of coffee to help me cope with the chilling winter of Kolkata. No sooner did I begin the read, I was absorbed in the narrative introduction of the characters. One word on the 12th page that struck a chord in me was ‘what if’. The protagonists in the novel had played the what if game, neither of them had ever expected anything terrible to happen. But it had happened.

The impact of the word was so much that it made me lost in my world of what ifs. Until I come up with my analysis, I just couldn’t proceed with the reading. And here’s what I came up with.

As kids, our world is too small and the innocent minds can never think about negatives. But, as we grow into adults, experiences and life’s lessons bombard us with questions for which we strive to find answers. Parallelly, our minds are on the go playing the what-if games. But our busy schedule shoves off those as negative thoughts. Weighing the extremes, we find our balance and keeping moving. But, after reaching a certain phase in life, when life seems to be aimless, we fall into the pattern of looking forward to those around us for our happiness. It is precisely then, the terrible what if thoughts take over us completely, thereby making us feel insecure about the future. Quite obviously, unhealthy minds invite troubles.

What if we take one moment to think about a small change in ourselves? What if we choose to work on some changes in our lives?

The very first impulse can be a denial. But if we allow ourselves to wallow in the new thoughts, we can identify the opportunity that the little changes bring into our lives. After all, life is short but full of fun. Life may not be good many a time, but we can always see the good side of life.

For me, the what if questions helped coming up with alternative plans. It brought a new perspective to my life. Here I share with you, how and why the what-if games are important to me.

• Me, being in a phase of life where I do not have much to accomplish, rather settled, would be apt to term, I needed something to keep me going. One question that shaped me to be a writer is, what if I take up something to make my life interesting. And it is then, I took up my writing.

• That was the beginning. The next what-if question to myself that kept me on my toes was, what if I stop here? It was when writing turned out to be tough.

• Answering to the what-if questions further, I find satisfaction and peace in my life. I now, look forward to each morning and have little goals set for my days.

• With the what-if questions, my plans for 2017 are intact. January is the month of new begin, and my plans for the month is to keep going adhering to my plans of blogging. In the month of February, I intend to explore new blogging platforms. March, is for taking my writing up to a newer level. April, May, and June are dedicated to a new project of writing. July would be a break. August would be a promising month with completion of my project. August should be a handful with little amendments of the project. September, October, and November would be for the full and final presentation of the project. December would be a month to wrap up my plans of 2017, tying the loose ends and completing other parallel tasks undertaken.

• Now, while I write these there is one what-if question threatening me, what if I do not accomplish my plan? Can I ever face myself? The answer is a big No-No. The answer in itself  has an inspiring note to me. And here, I go to take up my task of planning short-term goals to achieve my mammoth target of 2017.

Go ahead and start questioning yourself with the what-if questions and come out with answers. No matter how and what path we choose, all that matters is we, for ourselves, so that in future, when we look back, we should be proud of ourselves for having made it up all that we wanted to achieve.

My lovely readers, do wish me good luck.

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