In a deadly world, where movies like Sanju, a story of a drug addict who had connection with the underworld, mints collection of 235 crore INR; where a racist and a sexist runs the government of one of the most powerful countries in the world; where Kardashians family becoming a role model for many teenagers, it is very difficult for any parent to help kids in finding the right role models for them.
Like some of us, I was raised under extreme financial stress. Though we were deprived of many luxuries in life, my father made sure we were never deprived of HOPE. He made sure we pick the right role models who exhibit not just success but also the right values. He used to say that role model is more than just inspiration. His/Her very existence is a confirmation of possibilities one may refuse to acknowledge. And, my father was definitely right. Whether it was a failure in a professional life or personal life, my role models were the constant source of strength and kept me motivated.
Because of the internet and social media, finding a role model today is more difficult than ever.
Ironically, it’s not the lack of information or success stories, but rather because we are overloaded with these. It has led to a point where we have too many “choices” for role models. Every Instagrammer wants to be a role model and so does a you-tuber. In the middle of so much noise, Hima Das is a breath of fresh air.
In case you haven’t heard already –The 18-year-old Hima Das became the first-ever Indian to win the gold at a track event at an international event. “THE GOLD”! She clocked 51.46 seconds to ace the women’s 400m event at IAAF World U-20 Championships in Finland.
Her life is full of inspiration, but these are 5 things about Hima Das that I would like my daughter to know before she picks up Kim Kardashian as her role model:
1. She never let her circumstances stop her from living her dreams
In life, you will easily find people, who will always blame their circumstances for who they are. These people never live their dreams. They give up their own dreams to build someone else’s. They will give you excuses or blame their circumstances – their middle-class upbringing or Indian-origin or lack of their parent’s financial stature – for not achieving their dreams.
But, if you look very hard, you will find people who get up and look for circumstances they want, and if they can’t find them, they make them! Those are the one who will make their dream a reality. That’s what Hima did. She changed her circumstances. Hima is the youngest of 6 children in her family, a family of rice farmers. She didn’t use her small village upbringing as an excuse. She pushed her limits and never gave up on her passion for sports, even though her family couldn’t afford that passion.
If you ever feel that you don’t have enough resources to fulfill your dreams, remember that Hima was wearing cheap spikes when she won the gold in the 100 and 200. The only resources that you need to live your life are PERSISTENCE & DETERMINATION!
2. She fell multiple times when she was taking baby steps towards her big dream
Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars and to change the world. People told Hima that she doesn’t have any future in running as Assam was never known for producing runners. Hima lost an uncountable number of races. She heard criticism around every corner of her journey. But, she never gave up her dream.
She believed in her dream, worked hard and took baby steps towards her big goal. When people were busy criticising her, she was busy running towards her goal. She even competed at multiple events and races where she knew she couldn’t win. But, she didn’t care. She was preparing herself for the big day.
I still remember that she competed in two events at the Commonwealth Games 2018 — in the 400 metres and 4×400 metres. In the 400 metres, she finished sixth.
With each game, Hima was preparing herself for the big day. And, she took a huge step towards completing her dream by winning the gold at a track event at any international event – a feat no Indian has ever achieved before!
3. She had high expectations of herself
Most of the times, we focus so much on competitors that we forget our true gifts. In today’s age of live social media, we focus on our friends or our classmates or our siblings so much that we end up imitating them for the decisions they have made and lose confidence in our own abilities to achieve.
Like Hima, please have high expectation from yourself. Hima is never overawed by anybody and never cared about her opponents. In every race, her goal is to beat the best timing. And, that’s what should be your goal too. Beat the best expectation; Build self-confidence to exceed your own expectations from your self.
4. She expresses the healthiest emotion – Gratitude
When you succeed, it is sometimes possible that you may get carried away with the sudden fame. However, it takes a real winner to be able to stay humble and reflect on your success with gratitude. After the big win, Hima did not forget the hardships of her parents and the people who helped her in the journey. She thanked her parents and her coaches, who supported her in reaching where she is!
Please remember, gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for!
5. Karm Kar Phal Ki Iccha Mat Kar
Brilliant results don’t just show up by chance. The finest things in life take patience, focus, effort, and sacrifice. No one has ever got results by focusing on the results. They have got results by focusing on the actions that produce results.
So, run after Karma. Do whatever it takes keeping in mind that everything is temporary. The win is temporary so is the Loss.
And, no one other yourself can make it happen. She is celebrating her win but is also preparing for her future. Like a true champ, she doesn’t run after medals, she runs after time.
Hope she will make a smarter choice after reading this post!
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