Live the Life Like an Open Book

Arjun R Pillai
Mar 4, 2017 · 3 min read

I remember my friend Deepu whenever I think about this. We were classmates during our engineering days and he once told this as a joke — ‘My life is so wide open book that the binding has started tearing apart’. We laughed at the way he said it. He was telling the truth. He was one of the most open guys I have met (many of my friends still are). If you look at him from a distance, you will understand one more thing, his life is simple.

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I believe in living a life like an open book. I don’t know where I picked this lifestyle, but over a period of time, I started enjoying this way. What do I mean by ‘Life like an open book’?

  1. Not Many Secrets: Don’t carry a ton of secrets, not about you, not about anyone else. Being a human, you may have a few for sure. I may have some too. But I don’t carry them. There are no ‘active secrets’ that I have stored which I’m not telling anyone.
  2. Be open to the people who are with you: Be as transparent as possible to the people around you. Talk openly. Most important — don’t try to keep information to yourself to become the ‘big’ guy. Don’t make plans behind people who are with you.
  3. Be genuine: If you smile you mean it, if you are angry, mean it. Don’t wear a mask where you smile to the outer world (someone); clowns do it, but only for doing their job.
  4. Answer questions: If someone has the courage to ask you some question directly, answer it in the most direct way possible. (This is assuming that the question has eligible for an answer. Don’t answer the ineligible ones, just move on).
  5. Don’t lie: This is pretty important, blunt and simple — don’t lie. Period. In some sense, without doing this, you cannot do 1, 2 3 or 4.

What happens when you live an ‘Open Book Life’?

Someone asks you a question and you answer it. That’s all. No confusions at all. You don’t have to think a lot about:

  1. whether this guy is worth answering to. (you think about the merit of the question, not the person)
  2. whether you have answered this to his friend, whether he will find out and whether it will be a problem.
  3. whether you have lied to someone and you have to make sure to give the same story everywhere.

People will understand you easily. After all, people who talk with you will know the person you are because you don’t act. This will get you the bonding with like minded people. This will get you a network of good friends.

You will start thinking about all the people in the same pedestal. You don’t have different styles with different people. Your character will reflect in the works you do. You commit to things which you could do. You try your best once you commit.

There are negatives too. In this way, you are a frank, straight forward guy/gal. If someone asks you for a feedback, you will give the true feedback which the other person might or might not like. You might already know that this guy is going to hate me for saying this. But then, you don’t look at the person, you only look at the question. Remember? And in all fairness, you don’t need that person, who can’t take an actual feedback in the right way, in your life anyways.

At the end of the day, it is all about your happiness and satisfaction. I have found a ton of sanity living this way, the simple way.

Arjun R Pillai

Written by

Founder & CEO at Insent.ai (https://www.insent.ai)| fmr Head of Data Strategy@FullContact | fmr Founder/CEO at Profoundis (Sold to FullContact)