Vijitha Sebastian Adappoor
According to Dr Stephen Covey there are four main goals our life – to live, to love, to learn and to leave a legacy. Our decisions guide our life. The more we choose our goals based on our values and principles, the more we enter into a positive realm of energy and satisfaction. Everything that we undertake has its own challenges. Very often we end up adding our imaginary ones to these real challenges. As we move ahead, we realize that many of the obstacles that we once imagined were not even there. As we encounter them, we will surely find a way to tackle those obstacles.Whether it is a machine or a human relationship, maintenance is always cheaper than repair. When the game changes, we need to solve the problems differently. The chances are that the obstacles are not nearly as difficult as we imagine them to be. We have to explore and teach ourselves to look at the world differently, so that we can set new benchmarks of excellence. Confucius said, ‘The green reed which bends in the wind is stronger than the mighty oak which breaks in a storm’.
A close friend of mine was settled well in the teaching profession. As per the schedule of the academic year, she was told to wield her skills to the four sections under her care and the remaining two junior classes were handled by a colleague. According to my friend this person was very complacent and not really serious about his duties. She thought so, because the students of these two sections when promoted to the higher classes came in an untaught state and she had to double up her efforts for getting them ready to face the board exams. After a couple of years, the head of the institute brought in a few changes due to shortage of staff and the work of all the six sections were allotted to my friend. Well ….now she found herself at the crossroads – her complaint for all these years stood addressed but taking up the added responsibility would weigh on her quite a bit.
Similarly, my neighbour was always found sunk in a deluge of complaints regarding her pathetic state. Money was not an issue and so she never had to compromise on any material benefits, but still she moaned and groaned about her state, as they say the grass is always greener on the other side. She felt bounded due to the circumstances at home, taking care of the old parents and her husband whose health was in a deteriorating state. She shifted her children to the urban environ hoping to give them better exposure. Her complaints were attended to by the mighty one above and all those three sick ones were gradually shifted to their heavenly abode. For her, everything has come to a naught again and she is all so lost, having no strong ground to pitch her tent.
All of us face such situations in varied stages of our life. To swim through such tides we have to let our values and goals be in perfect harmony. Powerful determinants of human accomplishments reflect what we stand for, how we want to relate to the world, our behavior, our concern for others and our commitment. Like in the instances cited above, the achievement of one goal puts another in jeopardy. Our sense of right and wrong too sometimes get misaligned. That is when we need to re-plan and decide what we want to pursue from day to day within the important domains of life like family relations, friendships, career, spirituality and leisure. The problems that we face are the cliffs that we need to climb to bring forth a new strength within us.
If the game changes in our life, the new perspectives and experiences will reveal the hidden aspect of our personality. Unless we turn the steering in the right direction, we cannot manoeuvre sharp bends and likewise applying brakes wisely surely avoids damage to both men and the vehicle. Once, as we were heading back home, we had to drive through a waterlogged stretch. The police man on duty approached us and advised us to drive through in full throttle and not to apply brakes till we steer clear out of the low-lying area. It was an experience that tested the mettle of many skilled drivers. Those who successfully crossed over stood by the roadside smiling and enjoying the uncertain looks of those yet to take the plunge.
Our time in this world is precious. So, it would be wise to train ourselves to be enthralled with the amazing work that we are part of both at home and at the work place. Striving for happiness in everything we do is the key to a great lifestyle.