Letter to My Little One–15

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Retain the Magic of Work…

November 11, 2006

Dear Little One,

You have tried to put to rest some of my concerns about you that had started to disturb me of late. But honestly speaking the mother in me is still not convinced though the professional in me understands the phase you are going through. I really laughed a lot while reading about that evening when I finally acknowledged defeat, albeit unhappily but gracefully. Yes, I have this instinct of being a stubborn and a diehard person when it comes to some issues. Giving up easily, without fighting to the best of my ability, is not in my genes. I remember that when we used to jog together, many of my office staff were surprised to see the odd pair. One so young and dressed in sports knickers and the other the old one dressed in Salwar suits; the younger one would run past them like a scented breeze and the old one would be panting and huffing. One of them questioned me once—“Is your daughter a sportsperson?” “No”, I said continuing with my brisk run. “But, then why do you run along with?” with genuine concern he asked me. Yes, Why? Even I wanted to find an answer. It was not only to give you company but to give you a competition as well. I still have this instinct in me to compete and come out a winner. But that is how life is for me. I enjoy it.

That is why I am able to appreciate your commitment and passion towards whatever you take in your hands. But I need to say a few things as a mother to you about this passion. This passion of yours for work and to give your best to it is good but it should be balanced with other priorities in life. If it is a passion, it is fine but the day it becomes addiction, I think you would become a robot.

Remember how we enjoyed our walks together but sometimes even few steps would seem so many and we would return without finishing the walk. We would say that we are doing it not because we love to but have to, as a daily routine. And the magic was lost. Same is true for our exercise or dance routine. At some point of time we would just stop after a while when it seemed so monotonous. This happens with work as well. I am fortunate that till date teaching gives me the same excitement it gave me the day I started with my first class. The day I would not look forward to go to my class the magic of teaching would be gone for me.

I want you to retain the magic of work for all times to come so that you go to work with an enthusiasm and not dragging your feet to the work place. Cicero, the great Roman speaker, said long back that until you have a feeling of fluttering in the pit of your stomach before you start to speak in public, you cannot be a good speaker. This fluttering shows that you take it up as a challenge and after initial fluttering you need to take control of the situation. I think it goes good for all the professions. You have to get into the “flow” of whatever job you do. The day this “flow” is missing from your life, work would lack the challenge and the magic as well. It is the flow that keeps people in even the most monotonous jobs enjoy their work. Though teaching itself becomes monotonous after a while but it is the “flow” that gives it much needed fillip and the feeling to look each class as a new challenge. You, too, need to get into the “flow” of whatever job you are assigned with and make work a pleasure instead of a burden.

So my dear little one, maintain the magic and the passion for your work!

So my dear little one, enjoy working and giving it your best.

Love

Ma

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