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One evening in 2008, in our small two-bedroom house in New Jersey, standing on the staircase with a colorful plastic ball, my daughter asked me, ‘Papa, let us play.’ I brusquely told her, ‘No, I am very tired.’

She accepted it and did not badger me further.

At that time I was working in New York as a consultant with McKinsey. Due to the long commute, I would leave home at 7 am and get back often at 1 or 2 am (the earliest would be 11 pm). Every day after work, with the last drop of energy sucked out, I would just collapse on the bed.

Life just went like a blur.

Later that year, my wife and daughter had to move back to India, as my wife had to rejoin her job; I stayed back in the US.

The day after they left, I saw that same colorful plastic ball lying near the staircase, and nobody to play with it. Looking at the ball, I kept asking myself, ‘Why did I not play that day?’

At that time I resolved to myself: ‘There is not enough gold in all the vaults in the world that will make me work like this.’

Life is too precious to not be lived; to not give time to people you love.

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I conduct weekly workshops on building gratitude, mindfulness, and relaxation in our daily lives. You can sign up here.