When should you quit??

imsg-swimmer

Never give up, Never say die, Never quit; the favourite quotes of the proponents of positivism, the motivators form the basis of majority of the messages forwarded around, without much thought, on Social network sites/ WhatsApp since early morning. 

Yes, Never ever give up on your dream because of the fear of failure, because you imagine yourself becoming a laughing stock if you fail or because you think you will never be able to manage the finances but there will be situations when you will have to take a call to change tracks in life and ‘move on’. 

When should you quit? What can force you to quit? There are situations when you get bored with your profession, when you think you are not getting enough; enough money, enough time for yourself. Are these good enough reasons to quit? Money one can earn any amount but what matters most is satisfaction, happiness. Is the job giving you inner satisfaction? 

Are there enough growth opportunities in what you are doing? The most compelling reason for one to quit any job is lack of growth incentives on offer. The time you feel you have started to stagnate, there is no mental growth, no learning, you are bound to get bored and performance is bound to be adversely affected. This is the time to quit, time to change path. “The ultimate aim being happiness, the time you stop enjoying the journey, it is time to change the route and/ or the means of travel”. 

When there are no growth avenues, your juniors start overtaking you, frustration is bound to set in. This will not only affect your personal life but also lives of your family members. Do not force yourself to continue and in the process keep slipping down the ladder. It is time to analyse, take deliberate stock of the situation and take a call. 

The indications start coming very early, in any field, of stagnation likely to set in. One should be wise enough to read these indications, take the hint and start planning a change. Yes, continuous monetary flow may get disrupted for sometime till you settle down somewhere else, but if you have prepared well, you don’t have to worry much. Keep your spouse/ parents informed and prepare them for the likely hardships they might face as you start your struggle all over again. If you explain, they will certainly understand. 

“Trust your skills, trust your instincts, control your emotions, take your chances…. No use trying to give your best at a place where you are not wanted”

Be humble in victory, Graceful in defeat….Be a sport….

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 Football World cup 2018 is on and West Germany, the No 1 ranking football team of the world has been eliminated in the initial round having lost to Mexico (ranked No 15) and South Korea (ranked No 57). Iceland, smallest nation to qualify in the World cup, and Switzerland holding their mighty opponents Argentina and Brazil to one all draw in their respective games are the other major upsets. There have been many games where the winner has been decided in the very last minute. This clearly indicates that the ranking you enjoy doesn’t matter in the game, what matters is how much you have progressed, the hard work/ preparation and the ‘Never Give up’ attitude. The opponent’s history and ranking should not bother you, what matters is your belief in your own skill. The match is not over till the final whistle has been blown, a goal can be scored in the very last second and the entire narrative changes. 

Every team, irrespective of the ranking they enjoy, is stepping out on the field with the will to win. This is what life is exactly all about. People with a ‘never say die attitude’, always willing to learn, improve their skills and work hard are bound to be the winners. Once you enter the field, do not bother about the reputation of opponents, enter with a fresh mind and belief in your own skills and you will succeed. Yes, do not forget to carry out a detailed study of the skills and abilities of the opponents; this will certainly help you in preparing well. Learn from them, use their strength and weakness to your advantage. Do not ever let the past victories go to your head or make you complacent. Every game is a new game, every team is there to win. Do not ever take any opponent lightly. 

Another big takeaway from the World cup results thus far has been the sportsman spirit on display. Aptly described in Wikipedia, Sportsman spirit is an aspiration or ethos that a sport or an activity will be enjoyed for its own sake, with proper consideration for fairness, ethics, respect and a sense of fellowship with one’s competitors. One got to be a ‘good sport’ meaning accepting victory with humility and being graceful in defeat. This is so true in life as such. If the victories get to your head or you keep brooding over the losses for too long you are bound to fail in the long run. 

“To succeed in life be a ‘good player’; Humble in victory, graceful in defeat (failure), learning from every experience and moving on” 

“It’s the team which matters, individuals should work to make the team strong; When ‘Me’ becomes ‘Us’ success is bound to follow”

Tradition…. honour…Killings….

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Every family, every society, every community, every business thrives on its culture and traditions. Traditions qualifies any society and served as a tool over ages to bind the people/ company together. People lived and gave their life for the honour of traditions. Like every rule of law, every tradition needs to change to keep pace with the growth in society. Any business or society which refused to adapt to change either died a natural death or stagnated at best. 

Cases of killing for family honour are not very uncommon in our society. Perceived violation of family tradition/ culture or bringing shame or bad name to the family by going against the societal norms have many a times resulted in violent cold-blooded murders. Entire families have been declared as an outcast for defying norms of the community.

Day before, I was really disturbed to read that a father killed his teen daughter because he found her talking on cell phone, to someone he perceived to be her boyfriend, at midnight. That was reason enough for him to lose his cool and strangulate her to death. I am sure he would have certainly cautioned her at least couple of times before the incident but is such an action justified under any law. Is falling in love a crime, specially, for women? Does an inter caste marriage or love affair warrants punishment by death and that too generally of the girl? Yes, there have been instances boys being killed too, but, by the parents of the girl because she refused to leave him. Somehow the onus of carrying the family traditions lies more on the ladies/ girls than on the man. A man may get away with gross violations. There have hardly been any cases of boys being killed by families for perceived violation of family tradition/ causing dis-respect to the community whereas instances of girls being sacrificed are numerous. 

Man, the bread winner of the family is allowed liberty to go against the tradition whereas a lady, traditionally the homemaker, child bearer and caretaker is bound by strict traditions. Even in the so called affluent society the women do not enjoy the freedom as the folk do. 

The only way the change can be brought in is by means of education. Parents, specially mothers, have to ensure that the girls are educated and empowered to stand on their feet. They have to ensure the right values are instilled in the boys. The boys have to be taught to respect the girls and treat them as equals. A girl may be physically weaker but she can’t be treated as second class citizen in her own home, as compared to the boys. Rule of the land has to be strictly enforced, by the civil administration, with exemplary punishments being given in cases of honour killings. Enough government schemes exist for educating the girl child, what is lacking is the implementation in true spirit. “Mental blocks have to be removed, the thought process has to change and this can only be brought about by education”. 

“Allow your girls to grow…let them live their dream….they will only make you proud….trust them”

 

Life is fun when husband and wife are best of friends…..

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I am a firm believer that friendship provides a sound base to any relationship. During our journey of life, we meet numerous people, most remain acquaintances, very few actually manage to make place in your heart. Same is true of our own ability of making a place in anyone’s heart.  

Siblings are the first friends we get and then are the parents (Not everyone is lucky to have parents who act as friends). As we move on classmates, neighbours, colleagues join the list of friends and then is the long list of friends on social networks. Whatever, relation you share with anyone, you will only share your personal problems/ thoughts only if you consider him/ her your true friend. Your list of acquaintances may be very long but when you start looking for a shoulder to cry the list shrinks to just one or two people. 

Friendship is based on trust, understanding, love and mutual respect. 

Is your spouse on the list of your close friends? Is she/ he your bestie? Won’t you like someone you have chosen to spend your life with, to be your best friend? Not everyone is lucky to marry his/ her best friend but once married the relationship will foster well if friendship develops. There should never be formalities between husband and wife. If the communication between spouses is not frank and open than the relationship is going down the hill. The relationship husband and wife share has a direct effect on the children. Children growing in friendly atmosphere will always imbibe better values. The child will approach any of the parent with an open mind whenever he is in a problem. Friends will always sort out their differences through conversation. They understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses which help in resolving any issue. The earliest you develop friendship with your spouse the better it will be for married life. No one can match the support that your spouse can give you selflessly. 

“The main reason for developing strain in any relation (specially marriage) is never lack of love, it is generally lack of friendship”

 

 

Parents just need your time……Walk that extra mile to be with them.…

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Losing a dear one, specially a parent, at whatever stage of life, is painful. My father passed away when I was 47 and yet I have not been able to reconcile to the loss. The My job took me to several cities across India and as a result the parents could never stay for long duration with me as they preferred to live at the family home. We would meet once or twice in the year when I got some leave and visited them or they came over to my place once a while. These meetings were generally separated by a gap of five to six months when our contact used to be only through telephone. Passing of my father left a vacuum in life I am yet finding difficult to fill. My mother had left for her heavenly journey when I was 41.

I clearly remember, it was on 26 Apr 2012 at around 6 am in the morning that I got a call from sister that dad had not opened the bedroom door in the morning and the knocks were, not getting any response. My dad was used to getting up around 5 am in the morning and loved his morning walks and his not opening the door was certainly not a good sign and soon my worst fear came true when I got the second call, this time from my brother informing that they had forced open the door and dad was ‘No more’. He had apparently passed away in his sleep sometime in the night. Considering that he was nearing 84, still relatively fit and active, departing for his heavenly journey in this manner without any sufferings is considered the best. But still for me it was a great personal loss, which the mind and heart was not ready to accept.

What made me feel sadder was that for no apparent reason I had missed out on talking to my father for the past 10 days. I was always very attached to my dad and made it a point to speak to him at least two to three times a week, if not more.

After performing the last rites, I thought of just checking the call records of my dad just to see if he had made any call to anyone that night and to my utter shock he made three attempts to contact me between 10 and 11 pm at night but unfortunately on a number I was no longer using. Maybe he wanted to convey something about his health. I have ever since lived with this feeling of guilt of not being with my parents when they required me most.

Most of us move and live away from our parents for reasons of job/ education. We get so busy with our routine life, job and family that the time we spent with our parents goes on reducing. Even the calls become far in between, and the content remains a formality. My father preferred to live alone at the family home because of his friends around and his attachment to the place. Maybe he found himself closer to mom there. But then these are just excuses, I could have convinced or forced him to stay with me. I never tried hard enough. Now it’s all over and I can only live with a feeling of regret.

Having gone through all this I would make a sincere appeal to the young people to be more sensitive to the need of the parents/ elders in the family. If they can’t be with you permanently, take time out to be with them. Make it a point to speak with them at least once a day. We can never be so busy that we get no time to talk to our own people. No use regretting later, make amends now. You will not lose out on anything by spending time with elders.

“You don’t have to look for reasons to hug your parents/ elders……just hug them whenever you can…..get blessings for lifetime”

Life online….fun and pressures of being a blogger….

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Internet is loaded with options to explore, experiment, live dreams, earn, get famous (or infamous). Whatever be your profession or way of life internet has space for everyone and some have made internet their profession. 

There are bloggers, critiques of all age groups and different genres who have used the internet platform to live their passion, realise their dreams. Everyday new bloggers are joining in with the aim of making it big. But getting famous on internet is as difficult as it is in real life. It takes lot of hard work, patience and creativity to strike the right chord with the readers. Getting followers may not be very difficult, but getting the right appreciations and responses is not that easy. To make the right impact one has to be in touch be reality and be innovative. One has to have the right combination of heart and mind. 

Getting famous on internet is all dependent on the conduct, character, content, connect, understanding and gratitude. 

Internet gives the option to criticise anyone without exposing own identity and many misuse it, writing whatever they feel without actually worrying about the implications and the effect the writings may have on the person being targeted. This may give short term fame but certainly in long term will not last. Conduct and character will go a long way in establishing credibility and build a real following. 

Readers look for innovation and creativity. Once you are established, expectations are high and it is not easy to produce fresh content on everyday basis. Pressure is always high to post new content on regular interval, in fact at times daily. If expectations are not met criticism follows, which is so easy to carry out and not so easy to handle. Expectation of every follower cannot be met anyways all the time. Continuous touch with the subject and regular research is required to produce fresh content. 

The blogger has to not only understand the need of the blogger but also the behaviour pattern of the follower. A day of high appreciation may be followed by days of ‘No likes’. Before posting any content, take time to analyse if it can hurt someone. At times what you can embarrass you only. Aim should be more to create relationship with readers than to just get famous. Learn to empathise. 

Never forget to express gratitude to the followers/ readers, they make or mar your reputation as a blogger. Be thankful for, both, appreciation and criticism. 

Do not allow the abundance of appreciation get to your head, remain firmly grounded to reality. 

“It is the content and character which will take you long in the pursuit of happiness online…..Be different, be humble….”

Don’t let someone else’s opinion become your reality….

mountaineer

 

Any invention or discovery is the result of a dream and a never say die attitude. As you set course to give wings to your dreams there will be whole lot of people around expressing opinions; mostly negative or trying to infuse caution. Most will be, intentionally or unintentionally, aimed at discouraging you. It’s up to you to take that opinion or leave it. 

Any change is resisted. Most people try to discourage because they themselves either never tried or failed. The dream is yours, you have to take it to a logical conclusion. Yes, listen to opinions, take a considerate view but the final call has to be yours. Every uncharted path involves taking risks, fear of the unknown. You may have catered for 100 contingencies but it’s the 101st which will come to stare you in your face. You will not come out triumphant always, there will be partial successes/ failures which have to be taken in the stride. You don’t have to worry about what people will think. There are high chances of being laughed / mocked at every failure you face. More the failures, louder will be the laughter. 

No dream is the preserve of any particular class, region or religion. Everyone/ anyone can dream and fall in love with whatever they want. Maximum pressure on a dreamer comes in the form of family name, traditions and finances. Traditions can’t be followed forever, change is a must in society, it’s your call. Hardly any dream has ever failed for want of finances. Main reason for failure is always lack of a clear vision, inability to take risks and absorb failures. When you have a clear vision and the will to follow the dream finance will follow. The flow of finance may be slow at the start but should never be the reason to hold you back. Once you have taken the first step you will find the path. “It’s better to get lost in search of your love than to sit in the cosy confines of your home and sulk all your life”. Take firm steps, at times it’s better to take even baby steps and be firmly footed than to attempt an uncalculated long leap and go down a ditch, with little chance of recovery. As long as you are alive, there will always be another chance, opportunities will keep knocking at the door. 

Whatever be your dream; to be a scientist, singer, musician, dancer, pilot, mountaineer and the like; give it a sincere try. Attempt at whatever age you gather the courage to, do not die with a regret in your heart of never having attempted. 

To be successful you have to first win the war waging within, convince yourself that you want it and can do it, clear your mental blocks than only you can convince others.

“Dream, take your chances, do not worry about opinions, move out, follow your love, live your life”