Skip to main content

To compete or not to compete is the question

I would like to think I am not competitive. I don't even know where and how to compete. As I begin this post I am trying to state things where competition happens but I am failing miserable as I hardly know the arenas. As a child I was least bothered about who stood first and who came second though I was a fairly good student. I don't think I ever considered myself in the queue to get nominated for the rank in the class. It did not matter who wore what and who flaunted what stationery sent by some uncle/ aunt living in States. What mattered to me was how many words could I spell and could rattle the exact dictionary definition. Also maybe the number of books I borrowed in a month. (I can imagine a few smirks here and there)

The trend continued during the college and then university years. I was too laid back to be hurried in and out of classrooms and projects in the name of competing with the classmates. I am slow. I move slow. I often speak slowly and I think very very slowly. This was mirrored in the times when competition could have breathed a new life in the way my life eventually turned out to be.

Anyway, now as a mother to a 6 years in bad times as these, I see parents competing and egging their kids to compete. Yesterday I raised heckles when a friend mentioned her daughters report from a PTM and was ruing the fact that the child had managed 3 out of four stars. Poor thing! I did not let her continue and charged with a 'bloody' moralistic lecture. Intelligent girl that she is, she kept nodding at all the right places in form of empathy or maybe that was sympathy. I rallied on the importance of competition killing the child's spirit, how it was synonymous with comparisons and what good were comparisons at all were; for a good half an hour. Eventually the look on her face made me relent. The same look- sympathy mixed with a fair dose of pity- made me wonder maybe it was important to be competitive. It made me stop in the tracks, literally, as I worked in the kitchen. May be I have been wrong all this while. Maybe I should compete and make my child too.

But the next moment a bigger question faced me. Whom should I compete with and on what parameters? I have almost given up trying to find an answer to this as I am not finding an motivation here to even try. As far as the child is concerned, I will be looking for answers, even though with a wrinkled nose.

Do you have any thoughts/opinions/answers on this?


Popular posts from this blog

Reusable cotton pads: My first experience

I had been trying to bring changes for a sustainable living for a while now and using reusable cotton pads for Aunt Flo's monthly visits was an idea that appealed massively to my senses. After searching here and there I found a Kolkata based manufacturer- Shomota- who were also involving women from underprivileged background in manufacturing these pads as well as sharing the profit from sales to make these pads available to girls and women in interiors of West Bengal. BONUS point- I have also come to realise that sustainability is more efficient and worthwhile if you choose local. Also the fact that we are dumping non biodegradable waste on the planet and that is equal to some sort of violence in my head and I have been brought up on the beliefs laid by the Arya Samaj movement, I needed a better option than the mass marketed sanitary pads. I looked and examined a few option that I realised were available to me before making up my mind on the reusable cloth pad.

Why I chose cloth p…

Of new resolutions and newer authors

The year has started on the right note. I have already read two authors whom I had not read before falling hard for the one being hailed as Japanese Steig Larrson- Keigo Hagashino.
That is what got me thinking about new year resolutions  (I know we are done with the first quarter) which I haven't made in years. So here is a list of authors that I would like to sample this year.
1. Manu Joseph
2. Pico Iyer
3. Anthony Horowitz
4. Margret Atwood
5. Toni Morrison
6. Chimamanda Adichie
7. Jo Nesbo
8. Neil Gaiman
9. Terry Pratchett 10. Alice Munro
But I also realise the futility of making a list like this as there are just so many authors, poets, writers and just so many works coming to fore everyday. A book group might help, you would think but let me tell you that it complicates things further. New recommendations, fantastic and not so fantastic reviews, pictures, blog posts and what not really makes matter well,complicated.
All said and done, it is but human to try and so I shall …

The Happiness Connection

Suicides by two hugely popular public figures- Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain- within three days of each other.

One a fashion designer and business woman par excellence and another a famous cook, TV personality.

There have been many others before them. Though I knew just a thing or two about them the news about Robin William's suicide was heartbreaking for me. I remember thinking how could someone who laughed so much and made people laugh, do that. While there is so much being written in the social media about mental health in light of these two suicides I was stuck by a particular post in part on Ariana Huffington's Instagram feed. It is a Repost of a tweet by editor Elaine Welteroth and says:

..... And in your death we are reminded once again that there is simply no correlation between happiness and success.

How true is that! We have no idea about what makes us happy. It is easy to confuse happiness with material things, isn't it? Getting a Kate Spade bag any day would…