“You are going to be happy”, Life said, “but first, I’ll make you strong.” This pretty much sums up my journey in life so far. My experiences, like everyone’s experiences, have not always been easy, they’ve not always been pleasant but they’ve shaped me into who I am.
So, who am I? That’s a tough question for us all, isn’t it? It’s what we spend our lives exploring and answering. In any case, I feel that we’re all defined by where we stand professionally, how strong our bonds are personally and how much at peace we are with ourselves spiritually.
As a professional, I’m an Associate Professor, in the area of Finance and Accounting and Dean of Student Affairs at Jaipuria Institute of Management, Lucknow. My career began some decades back as a Financial Analyst with Cummins Turbo Technologies Ltd. I carry the tag of being a Chartered Accountant with pride, I’m a Post Graduate in Management and a Doctorate in Finance. I hope you all believe that one should not depend on a single income. So do I. Yes, I’m a passionate equity investor too.
The question is; did I want to become a CA, did I want to come this far? The answer, quite simply is, I’ve never planned anything because life always has its plans. What I am today is not only what I have done or learned in all the years. It’s about what my family has done for me. The credit for making me join CA goes to my family; my parents and the compliments for my list of accomplishments go to my husband, who is no more but his presence has always been and will always be there till I breathe my last. More on him later on…
Adding more on the personal front, I’m blessed with a close-knit family and friends. What I am today is a result of my family’s love, siblings’ affection, and their unconditional support and faith in me. They have always been exceptional and beyond compare. My son is my all-time favorite stress-buster. Spending time with him has always helped me get through hectic times. My friends too are my biggest support system. They give me a sense of belongingness and self-worth, which helps me through tough times. All in all, my family and friends are the anchor of my life; they keep me grounded. Getting back to my husband, well, he has always been a pillar of strength, he’s always inspired me to grow by pushing me beyond my comfort zone. Trust me, it’s not an easy task, me being me. So, kudos to him! He was a true partner who helped me to become a better version of myself. Though I’ll always miss him, he’s made me strong and independent. That’s what true love is, isn’t it? If you truly love someone, make him/ her strong and help him/ her become independent. That was what my husband did for me.
Moving on, as one has to in life, if there’s one thing I’d want to emphasize, I’d say that one should always be open to the idea of saying “YES” to things that are intimidating in life. As individuals, we should be accepting the fact that things will never be perfect and that is the essence of life, isn’t it? To explore new horizons, try out new opportunities, accept challenges head-on, be forgiving of one’s mistakes, and be accepting of failures with grace should be our outlook in life. You’d realize in the long run that it’s the things that challenge you which gave you immense satisfaction. In my case, saying “YES” to new and intimidating opportunities has been the best decision that I’ve made career-wise. I’ve had new experiences, new gains, and some losses. However, from each experience, I’ve learned, I’ve grown and I’ve become a more content individual. May I add that I’m still learning, still growing and I’m still a work in progress.
On the spiritual front, it’s said “if what you love doing, is something you're good at doing, and something the world needs, and what you can be paid for, you've found ikigai (a reason for being) – your true life's purpose and meaning.” In my case, teaching is my ikigai and I feel blessed because I’m doing what I love. Teaching for me is simplifying concepts and making students do things on their own. I use my knowledge of the discipline to expose my students to modes of critical thinking, encourage them to analyze, apply, synthesize, and evaluate all that they read and hear. I love the subjects I teach, and I know how to make the classroom come alive for my students. After all, feeling energetic and enthusiastic is natural for me and I believe it’s contagious.
I’d like to sign off by saying that what kept me going is having my faith in the Almighty, belief in myself, and adaptability to circumstances and change. Live life, love life, and let life happen. There’s always a master plan, his plan.