Friday, May 04, 2018

Milestones - Post No. 100

Milestones are exciting. And the number 100 is super exciting. This is my hundredth post on this blog and I thought it is a great opportunity to write about milestones in general and this blog in particular. 

When we are watching a cricket match, and the batsman goes from the score of 99 to 100, there is this infectious celebration, that spreads the cheer all around. If we look at this objectively, it is just addition of one run. Just the way the batsman went from 98 to 99 runs, he went from 99 to 100. In the context of the match, most probably the contribution of this additional run is immaterial. But a batsman who mostly gets out in 90s is less celebrated than the one who mostly gets out at 100 or more. Their strike rates, averages, and all other parameters might be exactly the same. But one has scored more centuries than the other. 

Who really decides, what is a milestone? Or is it just a mathematical thing, as one moves from 2 digits to 3 digits? But then in cricket, even 50 is a milestone score.

Let us look at something personal. Marriage anniversaries! I have been married for more than 9 years. In November this year, I will be celebrating my 10th anniversary. 1st, 10th, 25th and 50th wedding anniversaries are considered important milestones in a married couple's life. But then for me, the 9th one was equally a happy moment and so would be the 24th one. In cricket, higher the score, more physically drained you are. So scoring a 100 is a physical achievement as well. But in marriage the more number of years you are married, more comfortable you become with your partner. It is in the initial years, when you discover many new things about each other and you make difficult choices and changes to ensure your marriage works. So shouldn't the first few anniversaries be celebrated more than the later ones?

But then may be milestones are there to remind you that one should not stop putting efforts. 

I believe milestones should be celebrated because of the following reasons:
  • Celebration of a milestone is not about the point you have reached. It is the celebration of the journey to that point, the struggles on the way and the lessons learned. It is the point of celebration as well as reflection.
  • Celebration of a milestone, also is an opportunity to savor the moment and gather your energies to move to the next milestone with even more vigor and enthusiasm.
  • There are certain milestones in life, which help you reach closer to the ultimate goal of your life. Like if you want to retire early in life, then lot of milestones have to be hit faster than usual. So milestones should be celebrated because they take you closer to your life's ultimate goal.
  • Nothing in life is possible without others. As you reach any milestone in life, there are people who have supported you to reach there. Celebration of a milestone is also a moment to thank those who were there with you in the journey.
This 100th post is a personal milestone, but not towards any ultimate goal. I like writing. I am happy that I was able to write these many posts. I had recently written about my reasons for writing and about the title of my blog, Free Spirit. Here are few nuggets of information about my blog. These help me reflect on this milestone better. 
  • My first post on this blog was on April 27, 2005. It was about my travel in Delhi Metro. It took me a little over 13 years to write 100 posts. But that is not the complete story. 
  • I didn't write a single post in years 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015. I am sure I have many excuses for this. But I feel in these 6 vacant years, I pursued something else which didn't give me as much happiness as writing gives.
  • Out of the 100 posts including this one, I had written only 18 posts till 2015. Even if I exclude the 6 years when I didn't write anything, it is still just 2.2 posts a year on an average. Pathetic number, given the fact that I have so much to say.
  • In 2016, I wrote 15 posts, with each post having 3 short stories. I was part of a group, where one had to write something around the "Word of the Day". I had actually written hundreds of such really short stories in 2016, but published only 45 out of them. But thanks to this group, I started writing again. Also I think I had improved, a little, as a writer.
  • In 2017, I wrote 35 posts, largely due to my participation in A-Z Challenge. I wrote 26 posts in April 2017 and 9 posts in rest of the year. But this challenge has helped me write regularly since then. 
  • In 2018, so far I have written 32 posts (including the one you are reading). I wrote 26 posts in April 2018 as well as part of the A-Z Challenge again. I am sure this is going to be my best year in terms of number of posts. 
So a big thanks to the group (Owlery) I had joined in 2016 and the fellow bloggers, who motivated me to take up the A-Z Challenge. Let us now look at some numbers, which give me insights about my readers over last 13 years.
  • Most of the page views on my blog are from United States, followed by India. That is a surprise. Seemingly, I am writing things about India, which are unique for people in US. 
  • The top 10 countries on my blog as per page views are US, India, Canada, Germany, Russia, Poland, France, UK, Singapore and UAE, in the same order. Australia and South America are big misses. I need to read blogs from those countries and find out why. 
  • 52% of my readers are Windows users, 16 % are iPhone OS users and 14% are Android users. In last 2 years, % of iPhone OS users is going up. Clearly rich people among my readers are going up. 🤣
  • My top 10 posts by readership so far are listed below. 5 are from 2017, 4 from 2018 and 1 is from 2007. As I have written more posts recently, the skew is because of obvious reasons. Also I didn't really use to share my earlier posts with anyone as I felt that I would be judged. Now, I write for pleasure and don't seek anyone's approval. Now I feel confident of sharing, what I write. I thank all my readers for sparing their time and sharing their feedback with me. 
I am sure, with encouragement from you all, I will write the next 100 posts at a better pace.


Mandy said...

Congrats on reaching your 100th post! And completing April A-Z! And almost 10 years of marriage! Lots of success in this post! I loved your description of what it means to reach a "milestone" and how it's about a celebration of all the moments leading up to the anniversary. I totally agree with that! I wish you many more successes and milestones in the future! :)

Charan Deep Singh said...

Thanks a lot Mandy :-)

Anonymous said...

Many congratulations for completing A-Z challenge and writing your 100th post.It was great to read all of your posts. Keep writing. Your readers love to read your posts/stories. In your 100th post the way you described the celebrations is commendable.

Charan Deep Singh said...

Thanks anonymous.

Pradeep Nair said...

Hi Charan,
Stumbled on your blog, while checking the A2Z Challenge.
Interesting posts.
Milestones not only tell us how much we have covered, it is also a celebration of our capabilities, giving us hope and confidence of moving forward.
Looking forward to your future posts.
Take care

Charan Deep Singh said...

Thanks Pradeep

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