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I remember I had acted in Shakespeare’s play on Julius Caesar in school, and the dialogue that stuck in my mind is “There is a tide in the affairs of men, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries”.

Isn’t it true? Each of us gets some unique opportunity some time in life.  If we take it, we zoom ahead, but many a time we let it go – and keep wondering why we are not making progress.

TODAY is the day to shake off your past, be aware of your present (mindfulness), and take a peep into your future. Happy people are those who do not complain about the weather, they create their own.


Career Choices  beyond Academics

By Dr. Ali Khwaja

(who studied Engineering in IIT, but never used the knowledge, who practiced counselling but was not qualified  in it, who was refused admission in a University to pursue his doctoral studies, and finally landed up becoming an Advisor to the same (and another) university; who believes that being a better human being is far more important than being a highly qualified person).

At school a quarter century ago, I had two class mates who inevitably competed for the last rank in every term exam. Their marks were so miserable that no one could go down  to their level. They both dropped out of school. We kept in touch and found that one has become a taxi driver, and the other a Medical Sales Representative. “Poor guys” we all said as we went on to college and professional courses.

Today the first guy runs a travel agency with a dozen luxury buses, two dozen air conditioned cars, and an agency of international airlines. The second fellow is the CMD of a pharmaceutical company that is listed on the stock exchange, and has a turnover in tens of crores.

What is the moral of the story? Even though academic qualifications are very important in life, they are slowly yielding to the more important factors of skills and abilities. The education system is good for those who have a high IQ (i.e. mathe-logical and linguistic intelligence), but if you have other types of intelligences, then you perform badly and lose interest in studies.

 If you do not have a super-high IQ and are struggling with your textbooks, focus on building your basic Life Skills (i.e. how to deal with different situations and challenges of life) and how to sharpen your Emotional Intelligence (EQ), your emotional Intelligence. This consists of 5 parameters:

  1. Self-awareness (of your emotions, your strengths and weaknesses).
  2. Self-regulation (of your strong feelings, your actions)
  3. Motivation ( finding out what really gets YOU going )
  4. Empathy ( being able to understand what is going on in other people’s minds, and why they behave in a particular way ).
  5. Social Skills ( ability to build interpersonal relations, team work, and eventually, leadership skills)

If  you are still not convinced, think of the great Mr. Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft and the leader of the IT revolution in the world. One would think he holds many degrees with medals and prizes. Actually good old Bill dropped out from Harvard (and that too from the American education system, which is supposed to be much more flexible than ours). And do you know why he chose to drop out ? Because, of all the subjects, he hated Math. And maths, as you know, is the backbone of the IT industry. What Bill has to his credit is a high EQ. You too can start building your EQ now, regardless of your age and your academic qualifications (or lack of it). One day you will overtake others, like my classmates did.

Explore all possibilities in the fields that do not require too much of academic excellence, mugging up, or studying theory.


Asking the Right Questions….

Google has been answering all your questions since many years. It has become second nature to get information instantaneously from Google whenever we have any doubts or want to find out something we don’t know.

Now we have entered the era of AI. ChatGPT gives you answers from data collected from any part of the world, even that which has not been authorized, and which has not been verified whether it is true or not.

So……getting answers has become easier and easier.  The question is, do you know the right questions to ask which will ensure that you get credible information?

In the era of Data Sciences, Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, we need to be aware that many of us are becoming DRIP (Data Rich, Insight Poor).

Since there is overload of information, and no guarantee that the information is correct, we need to develop the skill to ask the right questions.

Any courses to teach that to us, or does it boil down to the basics of Life Skills?