We are living in an era of competition. Day by day the competition for success is becoming so intense that the very joy of living is being lost. What is worse is that the pressure of competition has engulfed our young generation also and this has resulted in several disorders. The increasing number of suicides among young students is mainly on account of this pressure. This is a serious issue and needs to be addressed correctly.
I had a first-hand experience of this narrow definition of success while I was addressing class XII students of Delhi Public School in Delhi, a few years back. It was a biology section with boys and girls in almost an equal number. When I asked them about their goal in life, everyone said that they wanted to become doctors. They also agreed that it was not possible for all to succeed in the entrance examination but the very thought of not getting selected made them miserable. Perhaps they had cultivated a very narrow definition of success in their minds. In short, success for them only meant becoming a doctor.
Regarding this, I gave the example of my nephew (sister’s son) who also entertained the desire of becoming a doctor while he was studying. He tried for the entrance after class XII, but failed. Thereafter, he sought admission in BSc, a two-year course at that time. He tried again after completing the first year of BSc but failed in that attempt too. Quite disappointed, he completed his BSc and gave a third attempt for the medical entrance with quite a good hope for selection. But third time also he could not succeed. Everyone was disappointed and thought that this boy will see no success in life.
But all were wrong including the boy. Having completed his graduation, he was left with no option but to seek admission in MSc. He chose agricultural botany as his subject and sought admission in a prestigious institute of Delhi. Gradually, he was coming to terms and started taking interest in his post-graduate studies. He did well and after completion, got admission for research in Australia. Having obtained his PhD from there, he completed his post-doctorate studies from the USA. Today, he is one of the leading bio-scientists-cum-entrepreneurs of the world in this field. His success is a matter of pride not only to him but to all his near and dear ones.
Hearing this example of success all the students started wondering. Perhaps they started rethinking about their definition of success. I also told them that this was just an example and there were countless of them. All this changed the environment of our discussion in a very positive way and they all participated in it with an open and happy mindset. Many of them told me over tea that they felt very relieved and the pressure of competing in the medical entrance had reduced to a great extent. Naturally, I also felt very happy and satisfied.
Perhaps all of us need to realise this aspect of success. Having born as human beings, we are the most precious creation of Nature. Nature has also not made any two human beings exactly the same. It means that each of us is a unique creation of Nature and there is a purpose behind our creation. Our efforts should be directed towards knowing that purpose and achieving it. For this, none of us needs to compete with others and if at all there is competition, it is with oneself only. This way our life should be a process of self-improvement. Once we do so, we get not only worldly success but achieve the goal of our life also. Surely, there is no competition in success. No wonder the famous philosopher J Krishnamoorti used to hate the word ‘competition’ as for him this was a synonym for ‘violence’.
...none of us needs to compete with others and if at all there is competition, it is with oneself only.