My Fully Loaded Car – Rational Emotions or Emotional Rationality?

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Let me tell you a true story about my very first car. This story is me and my mindset sixteen years ago. It makes me laugh about it now, but it meant so much for me at the time.

ruler lineI was walking down the street in Kearny, NJ. It was a beautiful fall evening.

I saw a car from the distance.Hurray - Time to Celebrate

How amazing!

The trees were sporting colors of the early October. The sun was going in and out of the clouds creating the kaleidoscope of colors in the sky. Gentle breeze was adding to the tranquility of the evening. And there it was a nice white color car, nestled between the trees. The whole universe was making the amends to make that car its focal point.

I marched quickly towards the car. I couldn’t believe what I saw. It was surreal. The car was for sale. I took out my pen, and pinched the ballpoint in my hands to confirm I wasn’t dreaming. But, it was for real… the car was for sale.

I wrote the phone number of the guy from the sticker on the windshield. I ran to my home, and called him right away. We agreed to meet the next day. I had hard time going to sleep that night, and when I did go to sleep finally, the car came in my dreams.

Did I buy the car? Sure, that’s the no-brainer.

I stepped behind the steering wheel, and felt like I was at the top of the world. How exciting!

It was so much fun. I didn’t know why people have to die to go to heaven, just buy a car. Oh, and the roaring sound of the engine did wonders to my energy. I “became” invincible. I felt like I was superman, and that had nothing to do with my testosterone.Flying high in the sky

Now, I am very systematic and methodical. I am also a very rational, level-headed person. I am serious. It’s just that at the time of buying the car, I used my gut feeling. I listened to that voice from inside. Intuition and sixth sense has so much value in terms of reaching to the right decision. I had simply put that to a very sensible use.
I am also very pragmatic. I am very realistic. Even though I bought the car without thinking too much about it, I had a long term vision. The car saved me time. It gave me convenience to move around. So, it was a very wise decision. Many people say that you always buy with emotions, and rationalize with logic. But, that’s not me. I am very logical. I never buy anything on emotions.

The car put me in the charge of my destiny. It paved the way for me to realize my potential. It inspired me to live for a purpose larger than life. Just imagine the benefits of buying that car. The ROI – return on the investment – from the car is astounding. And no I am not rationalizing about it.

The next week-end, I took my car to my close friends.

I was beaming with confidence and excitement. I couldn’t wait to share my proud possession and joy, “Would you like to see my car?”

“Oh, sure we would love to look at your car. Is it fully loaded?”

“Sure, off course it’s fully loaded. Would you like to have a ride in my car?”

My enthusiasm that day was too much to resist. “Yes, we would love to.”

Five people crammed in my dream car. It was hot, muggy October afternoon of NJ.

One of them spotted me working with my right hands, “Oh, it’s a stick shift!”

“Yes, I love stick shift,” I answered. “I can feel the power of the engine on my feet.”

As I pulled the car out from the slot, I felt urge to take care of them. “It’s hot inside the car.”

The kid from the backseat was waiting just for that.  “Let’s turn on the AC.”

“It doesn’t have the AC. Why don’t we open the window?”

Two people said at the same time, “Sure, let’s do that. Where is the switch?”

“There is no switch. Use the levers on the side to bring down the windows.”

It was climax for the teenager in the car, “So, it’s a stripped down model!”

Fortunately or unfortunately, I didn’t know what it meant. Or else, I would have killed him right there.

Sharing my joy with them felt so good.

They all were very excited as well. Or, maybe that was all I chose to see at the moment.

ruler line

I have matured with time since then. Or, so I think. I laugh at my story now.

Was my decision to buy the car rational? It probably wasn’t.Food for thoght

Was it a right decision? Sure, because it kept me in a “universe” that brought in positive energy. I really needed that at the time.  Ok, maybe I am back to rationalizing my decision.

It all came together for me last month, when I saw Dan Ariely’s work with ‘Upside of Irrationality’. Such an eye opener to me… Irrationality has its own blessings and potential to change and develop.

I have ventured into the realm of emotions much more since those days of my first car. It’s a journey that has continued to this date.
Emotions and passion mean so much to us.

I read Daniel Goleman’s book – Emotional Intelligence. And learned how emotions play into communication, leadership, teamwork and relationships.

I read Bert Dacker’s book – You’ve got to be believed to be heard – and so how emotions fuel and empower the communication.

I saw work from Stephen Covey, Tony Robbins, Brian Tracy and Zig Ziglar, and saw how emotions can be used for personal leadership. The drive and fire from inside play such an important role.

Also, I learned how handling emotions help in the sales.

I enjoyed reading Bryan and Jeffrey Eisenberg’s  book-  Are you waiting for your cat to bark?: Persuading Customers When They Ignore Marketing – and realized a whole new way to tap into the emotional intelligence on the internet.

I read Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping Point, and saw how emotions drive people in an entirely different light.

Now, it’s your turn.

What do you do to channelize your emotions, passion and the fire from within?

How do you use them to be effective as a person, a family member, a business professional, a leader, or simply as a friend?

ruler lineBy the way if you are curious what kind of car that was, it was 1983 Honda Civic CX, a two door hatchback car.

What are your thoughts?