Know What You Want to Do

It is said being a student or teenager is the best part of a person’s life. At some point of our life, we feel like setting the clock back and going back to our student life. But I wonder whether it is true in the present scenario. Studenthood is a very stressful period in a person’s life, especially in a country like India.

Starting in kindergarten, or you can even say as soon as the child learns to say something, parents start pressuring their children to learn and be the best. At two and a half, a child starts going to pre-Kindergarten and getting admission into a good school poses equal challenges for the parent and the child. As they grow, there is cut throat competition and a mad rush into engineering and medicine. No one wants to take pure science. If a child wants to do something different, they are often discouraged by the parents. There is little use discussing this issue with elders because most parents want to satisfy their own childhood dreams through their children. Thus, the rest of this post is directed at students to help them cope and balance life's pressures.


1. Until you finish schooling, behave only as a child concentrating well in class and trying to follow the advice of teachers and parents. This is not the time to develop independent views because experience is always a better teacher.

2. By the time you finish primary school, your area of interest might have become somewhat clear to you. Choose at least two or three subjects that interest you to focus on; you will very comfortably be able to do, say if there are five subjects.

3. If parents force you to pursue a particular subject, be polite and try to make them understand that studying something that is only their choice will not give the desired results. Also, do not let peer pressure determine your course. Do not do something just because your friend has done so.

4. It is perfectly okay to be different. Follow your heart. We wouldn’t have got great minds like Einstein, Edison, Ramanujan, or Bill Gates had they not followed their hearts. Look inside yourself for inspiration; if you are passionate about something, do that.

5. If you are not passionate about anything, do not feel bad about it. You will definitely be good at something and you can pursue that.

6. It is good to give deep thought to your choice and consult people who have done well in a particular field then make a decision and stick to that. It is important to be patient. When you repeatedly do something, you gain mastery and eventually start liking it.

7. If you are sure about your passion as Beethoven was about music or Bill Gates was about computers, you need not try anything else.

8. You'll need money too. If you come from comfortable background and your parents are ready to support you until you finish a PhD - it may take very long depending on the field - then just go for it. If you are that lucky person whose passion and the field of work are the same, it is a blessing.

9. Some need to follow personal pursuits than others. In case you have to work in a field you don’t very much like, do not worry. Work to the best of your ability during office hours and try to increase your focus on your personal pursuits slowly. Be sincere in your work place for the salary you earn; remember that without it you cannot do much in your free time.

10. Life is a great journey. Be fair to your own self, but do not deviate too much from the mainstream or risk giving the wrong impression that you were born special. If you are really different, your abilities will automatically rise to the surface and you will emerge as a winner.

Do not waste time when you are young. Live well. Make time for work and enjoyment, travel a lot and interact with people from different strata of society. Most importantly, neither think too high nor too low of yourself. Do this and you will have lot of good memories to cherish and will not want to set the clock back when you are in old age!


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