“A bend in the road is not the end of the road…Unless you fail to make the turn.”- Helen Keller
This post is dedicated to all who might be looking at new options either because of recent job cuts or otherwise. There might be a few doubts creeping in, or you might be receiving undesired statements from the world. Nothing and no one can decide what your future looks like except YOU!
I came across a LinkedIn post from an individual some time ago where he listed down an array of demotivators thrown at him when he was trying to start a new life in a new Country, such as “You will not find a job in your field”, “You will not be able to have a senior position if you want to settle here”,” You will need to adjust your expectations downwards” etc. etc. He then proceeded to proudly share that “He was glad he only listened to himself” as he was now on the Board of Directors of a reputable organisation within that year.
I assume most of us have encountered such situations in our personal & professional lives where we are faced with similar statements/doubts expressed on capabilities. There can be one of three outcomes in such a situation:
1) Get demotivated/stop attempting
2) Not affected/carry on as planned
3) Challenge becomes a huge motivation/multiplies the effort.
In my personal experience, these have actually proved to be significant motivators to try to accomplish what has been stated as “can’t be done”. Granted that subject to the limits of science and the supernatural not everything will be possible but I hope you get my gist :-).
It was the year 1993; I had just given my year ten exams (sort of equivalent to GCSEs) and had about four months of holidays coming up. Although it has been quite common for 14+-year-olds to take up jobs in Europe, the Americas etc., in the Northern Indian town of Faridabad where I grew up, it was almost unheard of (the landscape has changed a bit over the last decade or so but still not common) due to multiple factors such as too young, family reputation, limited belief in capability etc.
However, in very simple terms, in my heart, I wanted to learn the value of money and expressed a desire to my family that I wanted to work. You guessed the response right…” You can’t do it”. So the third outcome, as above, “ Challenge becomes a huge motivation”, kicked in, and I tried to find a way. As luck would have it, I learned about a boy known to my family who had started going to Delhi as he had taken up a job there. I spoke to him and was told that he works for a toy company. Somehow convinced my father to accompany this boy called Happy for one day and see if it was something decent to be involved in.
As agreed with Happy, I reached his home the next day at 7:30 AM to go to Delhi with him. Not sure why, but surprise, surprise, he had left without me. Now definitely couldn’t just go back home and miss this golden chance, and in those days, there were no cell phones, so I couldn’t contact Happy either. I remembered Happy had told me that the company he works for is based in Delhi's “East of Kailash “area and had shared the company name. Armed with these two pieces of information, without ever having travelled alone to Delhi and that too on Public transport, I headed for the old Faridabad train station(Google hadn’t graced our lives yet:-)). At the station enquired about the train stop I should get off at in Delhi to reach East of Kailash and learned about Okhla, my destination station for the day. Once I reached East of Kailash ( it was not a couple of blocks, more like a small town), I started enquiring about this Toy company, and after about an hour, luck smiled, and a phone shop( called STD/ISD booths in India) which this toy company used to route their long distance calls gave me their address.
Late morning, I arrived at A3-East of Kai