Taking a student’s seat

Hello, dear friends. I know… been a while…been busy. I really missed saying hellos, posting comments, and reading.

My smooth blogging life was shaken and stirred when I started taking driving lessons.

People say, “There is no right age for learning”. I believe and agree with that saying. But driving scares me. Driving in anger and not in a sane mind is what I had always thought of. So, how was I to learn driving?

As I’m no longer a teenager, I was not very sure if I was scared (of the obvious reason – accidents) or disliked the idea of taking control (as I feared for my life and the living around me). Inspite of my medium sized horrors my courage had reasoned out with my fear.

It also turned out that my fear and resistance had given rise to a new kind of excitement. I was excited not to sit behind the wheels but to sit on a student’s seat.

I knew what kind of student I would be. The only thing I was unsure of, was – what kind of teacher or driving instructor will I get. I was a bit nervous and scared as I had heard some miserable experiences of other learners and how the instructors could be mean to learners.

Finally, the day came, when I was to meet my driving instructor. I was excited. We exchanged smiles. Behind my hesitant smile I was trying to ascertain how good or bad teacher will she be. Although, not sure if she was doing the same with me – judging me as a quick or a slow learner.

We started with the lessons.

Day 1 – was important to me, and the little body on four wheels. I was having a hard time understanding its functions and handling it. I felt I was at war with my senses…checking the mirrors, controlling the steering wheels, gears, clutch, brake and accelerator. I pitted myself and my four-wheel companion as it made noise while I struggled with it.

My instructor didn’t need a master’s degree to understand that I was scared. She asked me to stop and relax. She allowed me to drive at the lowest speed to get a feel of the three musketeers – clutch, brake and accelerator.

Day 2 was much better. I still had to learn a lot but I felt relaxed.

As the days passed, I think, I got better with managing the three musketeers and other controls.

What really encouraged me was the support and positive attitude of my instructor or teacher towards me. Never was she rude and always patient (a trademark of a good teacher). If I missed something, she would say, “I’m going to constantly repeat the instruction till you get it right.” She kept repeating, until I was taking the right kind of U-turns or changing lanes or applying the brakes. When I would stop in the traffic, she would instruct me calmly. She would say, “Don’t worry. We are just learning. Don’t hasten otherwise you will commit mistake and it might take longer. Whatever you do…do it slowly and gently.” Gently I would get started and off we would go.

She had surpassed my checklist of a good teacher. Her excitement and keenness to teach had motivated me to leave my fears behind and learn freely. Her cool and calm attitude had pushed me to try better every time.

Our combination, of obedient student and dedicated teacher had worked well. Up to an extent I think we both have been successful in our process of teaching and learning.

I’m still learning as she thinks I need some more practice and confidence.

Sometimes student, Sometimes teacher

When I was a child I was a student, learning at every stage from everyone.

I was a student of a mother who taught me to walk, run, think, understand and above all survive in life.

When I finally started to read and write I was sent to school to be educated and get a degree of all kinds.

In schools and colleges I was a student of all the teachers who taught me not only the subjects but also gave me the practical understanding of things and how to relate it with life. I watched them closely and listened carefully to every word they said.

Then finally it was time for me to check my understanding and showcasing my talents and skills to the world. I started working.

I was a student of my boss and all the other seniors who mentored me. Sometimes praise boosted my confidence and the other times a slight criticism catapulted me to take the challenge and prove myself. There were still other times when none worked so I floated like a cork in water.

Now there is a slight shift in the roles. After all those years of learning and gaining firsthand experience about life I’m on a different road, where I’m a teacher.

I would like to believe that I’m a teacher to my sister guiding her, helping her to take decisions related to career and life but mostly it’s career.

I would like to believe that I’m a teacher to my students and trainees as they learn how to master some skills related to communication and personal development. They would sometimes consult me on matters of education and profession as well.

I would like to believe that I’m a teacher to the young ones and children in the family. They learn to draw, paint, play, have fun, cook, read etc.

Though I’m a teacher to some people but I still consider myself to be a student. As the life’s camera keeps rolling, the role of a student cannot be static. If you are a life’s student you keep learning and moving ahead. However, sometimes when enough is gained from personal experience and from observing others you can change the costume from a student to a teacher. Based on your learning and experience you can help and lead others when they are facing any difficulty in any section or any phase of their lives.

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Survival…a basic human instinct

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Survival and struggle have always been a part of human lives. I guess it wouldn’t be wrong to say that survival and struggle go hand in hand. We have always struggled in order to survive. The nature of these two could be different; however, the message is only one- to instil in us our survival instincts.

I remember when I was may be 20 yrs old and wanted to be independent (the whole idea was to have pocket money from working). I was glad to have found a job as a teacher in a nearby school. For the first time in my life I was going to do something without anybody’s help.

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How did I feel?

I guess I was ready to fly (of course with invisible wings). The first day was just about okay, with the introduction and allotment of the classes. None of it really made a difference (at least for now), as the spirit in me kept me high.

A few days got over and my spirit was getting shattered. I didn’t know how to deal with the kids. The kids really admired me (they always admire a fresh face, I guess). However, I found it difficult to manage the class.

Any ways, I kept on going. I was not ready to sink, so I kept on struggling in order to survive. I wanted to work but within 21 days I was out of the school.

It had happened, as one day the principal had summoned me to his office. He handed me an envelope. I feared that it would have a letter, and if so what about my pay. But the silence was broken soon enough, when he said,”This is your payment for 21 days. You are not a good teacher; maybe you could try somewhere else.”

Oh! I couldn’t feel a thing. Needless to say after such a good feedback I was depressed. I started to think; I’m such a failure that I couldn’t even do what others of my age were doing so easily. Then I thought, of course they could be doing what I failed at and maybe I’m meant to do something that they won’t be doing.

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After sometime I became a soft skills trainer. The first time I got the opportunity I did remember what the principal had told me. The dialogue had made a haunting impression, and it made my feet tremble a little to walk towards the new opportunity. But I wanted to struggle, and I did survive.

Today I’m happy being a trainer. The people really like my training. Most of them walk up to me and say that the training has made a difference in their lives. It sure does make me happy to know that I could help someone in some aspect of their lives.

Today and always I’ll be thankful for the situation that once inflicted pain in me. It also helped me to struggle and swim and not to be prey to depression or hurt of what others believe of me. It taught me to survive and be strong and believe in me that I could not only swim but reach a shore triumphantly.

Art is where the heart is

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I found myself gazing at a wooden frame which was at a display and had amazed the art lovers. It was not a work of some world famous artist; however, the novice artist had managed to gather some appreciation for his work, locally. The artist had played very well with the colours and made the canvas come alive.

The colours were playing in the garden of canvas as the children would play in the school play ground; each with a unique character of its own breathing the life in the wooden piece of canvas. Like others I found myself staring in admiration at this beauty. And as awestruck I was I just uttered, “What a piece of art”.

So, what is art?

Is it a mere canvas on a wall or only the work which is respected and paid in hefty amounts?

And, who is an artist?

Well, I simply believe that anyone and everyone have an artist at work within themselves.

Art doesn’t have a specific address. It can be born anywhere: on the streets, at shops, at homes just anywhere. I also believe that an artist can be born when true dedication burns in one’s heart.

A mother is a dedicated artist; she is the only one to take care of her children without wanting anything in return. Since the day she becomes aware of the fact that a life is being nurtured in her, she becomes an artist. Every day she might paint a picture of how her child might be. She gives an identity to her child by not only naming her but from now on she would dedicate her life in the upbringing of this child; the child who is her creation.

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A confectioner is really patient and passionate about the sweet delicacies that he makes. Ask me, how?

In the greased canvassed tin he would gently lay the sweet children of cookies. After years of perfection (or maybe he would still be new to the business) he would inspect each cookie, and then he would decorate it with rubied cherries. Finally giving them a gentle brush with egg glaze, which would give them the perfect smile for the baking photo shoot. At last when they march out, he would gently powder them with a little flour dust. Thus ultimately he has created an art.

I can see art and artists everywhere; the only thing is sometimes we are aware and the other times we are just oblivious of the fact that we are creating an art.

The truth is, everyone is creating an art form: from a simple gardener to a cook; from a school teacher to a copywriter; from a sculptor to an architect all are busy creating art.

If you ask me, “what is common between these renowned artists and disguised artists as common people?”

To me “the passionate heart” sounds as the only answer. A true artist would never worry about the returns (monetary or non-monetary). He/she would just create from the core of his/her heart. Driven by crazy ideas from the mind but fuelled by passion and dedication from his/her heart.

Hence, I believe that art can be found anywhere and everywhere. All the things that we see reflect some form of art;as a creator would have created it with a true dedicated heart.

The power of failure

The power of failure.

Failure teaches me to try, whenever I don’t succeed.

Failure teaches me to strive harder the next time.

Failure gives me a chance to fall down, maybe on my knees.

Failure gives me the strength to rise up with all my vigour and zeal.

Failure demands me never to give up.

Failure paves my path of life.

Failure decides my destiny.

Failure gives me the power of determination.

Failure makes me successful not once, but as many times as I fail.

Failure makes me an experienced person.

Failure is a great teacher to make me learn from different situations.

Failure pushes me to the wall, and helps me to come back with a grand entrance to life.

Failure is the reality of life.

Failure churns the level of my perseverance.

Failure challenges my will power.

Failure brings opportunity for me develop new skills.

Failure helps me to explore a new me.

Failure strengthens my character.

Failure is my golden armour to success.

Failure demands continued axing on that golden armour.

Failure is not easily breakable.

Failure is the only formula to success.

Sometimes I think what if I don’t fail; how great would that be?

I would have lived a life without any experiences,

I would be a successful person without any failures.

Then I think, better for me to fail to be an experienced person; than not to fail at all and be a successful person.