Indian society believes and set rules discriminating among girls and boys. Girls always take up to their mother or in fact they should while the boys obviously should follow the man of the house. However, thankfully there is a change in trend....girls equally learn from their fathers and boys from their mothers. They are both learning values towards their career goals.
Making a successful career can never be possible without your parent’s teachings. Being a girl that has grown up in the same orthodox Indian society I would like to share all that I have learnt from my best friend, superhero, and mentor- my dad, that helped my career move forward!
It all began with a lie
I faintly remember breaking a glass figurine and lying about it repeatedly. I was a little kid and obviously scared, so I kept on lying about it. My dad kept his cool and was patiently asking me not to lie, which was very unlikely. Then he spoke his magical words which seeped right through my subconscious mind - “Everybody makes mistakes but owning up to it takes courage. So now you have to decide whether you want to be courageous and own up to your mistakes or be a coward and lie about it.”
I decided then not to be a coward whatever the situation calls for and somehow that stuck. The best part about my dad is that he practiced what he preaches... and that is a rare quality might I add! When he makes a mistake he humbly accepts it and works towards fixing it. Seeing this helped me grow up into an honest person whether in school or college or even my office space. My honesty is still appreciated. Yes sometimes it does go against me but at least I am always at peace which is most important to me.
Being punctual even if others are not
I think I have never seen any man so punctual as my dad. Even for parties, he is the first one to get ready and sit in the car patiently waiting for us. Whether it’s a party or a meeting or his office, he prefers reaching early but never late. He hates latecomers himself. Yet another magical phrase of his – “You already lost half of the day and enthusiasm if you’re late.” Ever since then I started valuing and appreciating the time, energy and commitment of others as well as mine. You can imagine what a great impact this has on my professional path. Who wouldn't appreciate a punctual employee?
Friends are measured in quality
Both my parents don’t have many friends but the friends they have are ready to die for them. Definitely, a workplace is not a place where you can make friends. It is a cold competition you go into, but if you are good with people and try to make these competitors your friends, at least you will get 2 out 6 as your friends even after you leave the company. It is all about the social sphere you are connected to after all no one can spend their life alone. Everyone needs company. Hence comes another magical lesson – “Be a good friend to find a good friend.”
Take the criticism with a smile
This is the most difficult part especially for me, which I am still in the process of learning. My parents were not like some of my friends' parents, neither competitive nor too mushy. They, in fact, had a different approach to everything I did. If they had to motivate me into something, they used to demotivate me and criticize to the core so that I can dust myself and get geared again. As a child, I was heartbroken towards these approaches. But soon as I grew up, I was proud of them as they taught me the harder way to turn into a strong girl. Nevertheless, these approaches were mainly from my mom’s side, but my dad was always very proud of me and had this unlimited faith that I can do anything and thanks to him, I really believe that I can.
Live Your Passion
Money is everything nowadays, but according to my dad, “money can’t buy dream jobs.” As I started going for job interviews my dad always assured me that he is proud of me and that he is capable of taking good care of me. So I should not be blown away with numbers and just take any random job. I might like the numbers initially but that won’t suppress my frustration. “You should go to the office with a clear mind and a smile looking forward to your job which you love doing” - Dad.
Dedication to work
I grew up seeing my dad working really hard in whatever he does whether it is office or family duties. “No matter what work you do, whether you like the job or the people asking you to do the job, you should be enthusiastic, as hard work always pay off.” Laziness is a sin, even according to the Bible. Also just doing the work for namesake is not a solution. Dedication and attention are a must to get a job done successfully. Big or small, a job is a job and you must do it with commitment.
I learned from his shortcoming
Parents can’t be perfect, but you can learn from their shortcomings as well. My dad is anything but calm. His hyperactive nature scares and annoys everyone. Unfortunately, that's passed on heritage to me! But it took me little time to realize that I needed to be calm cuz you can't have 2 ticking time bombs set off at the same time - diffusing them simultaneously would be next to impossible. Today, this helps me tremendously to help maintain a calm environment around the office and to make sure that I don't get sucked into any office feuds.
Stand up for the right thing even if you’re alone
This lesson, in particular, put me in trouble many times. But by default, I can’t keep my mouth shut how much ever I try to. Standing for the right doesn’t come too easily you see, it involves a little argument going wild, fights with random strangers on the road and so much more. Yes, I have gone through all. But is that stopping me.... no way!! If I know I am right and it’s for justice I am fighting there is no way I am stopping at this till I make my point clear. What do I get? Peace of mind!
Respect yourself and others
Your character is far more valuable than anything in the world. Don’t trade it for something foolish like money, fame, power, sex, or the entire world. Respect yourself and others. “You should face yourself in the mirror, the day you can’t, you are not worth living.” – Magical words again.
Career and success will follow but family and the time you spend with your family can’t be replaced. Both my parents work, but we were well taken care of. One doesn’t need to spend on expensive holidays to be with the family. Peace and happiness comes even in having dinner and watching TV together or playing video games together or even washing the car together.
Last but not the least- rest
Work should be confined to office only and should not be brought home. Evenings can’t be spent in respective rooms. Holidays are meant to eat properly and sleep properly. These were some of my house rules set by my dearest father. According to him, “We can’t tax our brains too much or one day it will explode, so give it rest and everything shall follow”
So these were the lessons I learned from my dad. Both my parents are amazing. Their experiences have taught me the value of working hard and pursuing lasting significance over worldly success and I will be forever gratified to them.