My name is Mayank Agarwal. I’m the co-founder of SendX. I started my professional career almost a decade ago, but very quickly realized that sitting inside a cubicle is not my thing. So I started working on various projects and startup ideas parallelly but they didn’t really work out. So I decided to do the next best thing – work with startups and start observing entrepreneurs and how they build companies. In 2016, I finally decided to take the full-time plunge and started working with my co-founders to build SendX.
I’m also deeply curious about how things around me work. Fields like psychology, evolution, human behaviour deeply fascinate me.
One of the most important discoveries for me has been learning about the workings of the human brain and its evolutionary past and why it works in really quirky ways at times. It is almost like an inner monkey that needs to be tamed or it starts doing monkey things… which are not that interesting (to say the least) 🙂
In order to tame your (monkey) mind, you first need to be aware of it.
So, for the past few years I have been on a quest to live a more aware life.
Now I strongly believe that perhaps the only thing I truly own in life is my attention. Hence, I need to become (more) aware of where my attention is going.
But how can we do that? What tools do we already have that we can use to move towards that?
Through my research, I realised that there are probably 4 tools at hand – meditation, journaling, therapy, and guided psychedelic experiences (if you’re interested in the latter, I would strongly recommend reading Michael Pollan’s How to Change Your Mind).
I was already practicing the first 2 and therapy was on my radar. So when we were informed about YourDOST’s Founders program in Upekkha’s quarterly retreat, I thought this was the right opportunity to give it a shot. There wasn’t really any apparent harm in taking it up and I was curious to find out how it could be helpful. I knew I could easily spare 30-60 mins a week for an experiment that could potentially have an outsized reward for me.
One of the effects that I noticed immediately was that it compounded the benefits of the other activities that I had been doing – meditation and journaling.
Because of the discussions with Puroitree (my coach) my meditation sessions became more impactful (but not easy) and journaling became more focused.
Slowly few of the threads in my mind started to untangle and then as and how I spoke to Puroitree, things started adding up a lot more. And with time started compounding. It was like 1+1 led to more than the sum of the parts. YourDost’s logo is a good visual for that.
I treat it as an essential stack in my personal growth toolkit.
The iceberg analogy would fit in perfectly here. Your mind is like an iceberg and most of it is out of your sight (read: awareness). Therapy begins to uncover parts of it.
Maybe, I have been able to uncover just 1% more in the last 1 year but I won’t mind spending the next 10 years to take that to 10% :). The impact even 1% has is deeply meaningful for me
At a more meta-level, I feel more whole now. I feel more comfortable with being vulnerable and accepting of new experiences around me. I was in the habit of judging the world in terms of ‘good’ and ‘bad’. I do that a lot less now.
Instead, I tend to perceive things more in terms of what happened and what needs to be done. That approach leads to much more objectivity and has a lot less emotional baggage attached.
At a professional level, I feel that I’m able to make better decisions faster for my startup. Startup journey, as you know, is full of highs and lows.
So I think the “lows” now feel a bit more shallow and I tend to stay more grounded in the “highs” (which leads to making lesser new mistakes).
More importantly, I feel now I’m now able to keep some sort of an internal score rather than benchmarking myself against external scores or stories.
If I look at my growth arc I feel very grateful to Puroitree. Right now, I am in the phase with Puroitree where we’re trying to form different narratives which are more beneficial for me than the previous ones.
In general, I feel that Founders aren’t very open to seeking professional guidance, when it comes to working on their minds, perhaps due to the stigma attached. But rather than thinking of it like that, you should think of it as an important stack in your growth toolkit (just like reading, listening to podcasts, talking to mentors and specialists etc). This is what it truly is. If you’re a sportsperson, you have coaches for keeping your body in shape. The entrepreneurs’ game is more about the mind. So, why not have a coach for that?
Are you a startup founder, incubator or VC looking to boost your own as well as your team’s growth? YourDOST’s Founders Program will help you do just that. Click here to learn more.