Sunday, July 25, 2021

Career plan

As Nagaland Board of School Education (NBSE) declares the much awaited Class 10 (HSLC) and Class 12 (HSSLC) results today, parents must understand that intelligence is not only about how many marks one gets in an exam. To get good grades in examinations is fine but to link intelligence and talent completely with one’s grades is a mistake. We should ensure our kids get good grades but more importantly we need to see whether they comprehend what they are being taught or they simply mug up things. If they comprehend things properly but their grades aren’t that high, that’s better than getting high grades when you don’t understand what you have mugged up! Parents must ensure that their kids work hard but more importantly they should also ensure to see whether they are enjoying what they study or not. Remember if students feel that studies are torture for them, failure is the only final result awaiting them. Sometimes we force our kids to work hard and feel that we have accomplished a big feat but in the middle we miss the larger point that they are working hard not out of their sweet will but because of our ego and pressure. And the moment this pressure is released hard work vanishes in thin air. Another vital issue which comes up at this point is the choice of subjects for future studies. Up to matric (Class 10) subjects are almost uniform across the line. Our kids have to make their first choice after matric and get second chance to make a choice of subjects again after 12th class. And this is a very sensitive issue. But unfortunately the biggest tragedy that occurs at this point is that generally it is parents who make the choice and not those for whom this choice is made and who ultimately have to study these subjects. This is why we see most high score achievers proving failure in entrance and other competitive examinations. Sure this does not mean that kids need no advice on this. Being young they can commit blunders if hundred percent liberties are given to them in this case. But this also never means that parents on their own, without even talking to their kids, should make the choice. Remember it is an important phase in their lives. Any mistake at this crucial point can play havoc with their future. Problem with us is that most of us still see life through the prism of MBBS and engineering and feel that no life exists beyond. Some of us want to fulfill our “shattered dreams” of the past. And some due to family pressure, peer pressure or societal status drag and force kids to opt for traditional subjects. Remember, not every kid is made for studying medical or non-medical. Every kid is special and bestowed with talent by God. We need to identify it, hone it and give proper direction to that talent rather than trampling it only to satisfy our false egos! Not very kid can become a doctor or an engineer! We need to get this simple fact right. Some kids don’t understand mathematics (because it isn’t in their internal make up) and yet parents force them to opt for it. Result, they fail or make it by a whisker, without absorbing anything positive from it and in the midst ruins their future. We have seen many doctors who could have become brilliant academics but for the family and peer pressure. We know many engineers whom we find misfit in the field but could have been brilliant social scientists. No doubt we have produced a chain of doctors, engineers and other professionals but many amongst them are their out of compulsion rather than choice. And that’s why we will find these people have no job satisfaction. Indeed it is very important for parents to start talking to their kids. Try to understand them. Listen to them and their ideas about their future. And then share your ideas with them. Weigh all career options in the backdrop of their interests, weaknesses and strengths. And then collectively make a career option.