Written by Diptarko Paul (Weloquent)
In college I had two friends who came from very different backgrounds. One of them came from a financially struggling family with no earnings or a caretaker, and the other came from a well known, upper class family. Surprisingly, even though the first friend had no one to supervise over him, he studied hard and fetched good grades for himself, whereas the second severely neglected all his classes and spent his time hanging out at the corner coffee shop from morning till the evening and skipping all his classes. Today, as I write, my first friend pursues a postgraduate degree in a foreign university, while for the other life has become stagnant, with each day passing by mindlessly.
As a child, my mother always reminded me that independence does not equate to indiscipline. She taught me that only through the combination of discipline and hardwork can one appreciate independence and bring their dreams to life. This came back to me on the day of graduation: my studies were complete, and I was stepping into the “real world” to pursue my dreams. The following evening we treated ourselves to a celebratory Iron Man film, and I realized that as much as we would all love to own a dream house like Mr. Stark, we should also remember that despite his terrible health conditions and inherited fortune, he built himself to be an Iron Man. He chose discipline and hard work over leisurely whiling away time with his riches. Later that evening it dawned on me, that Mr. Stark, you and I have the same powers and ability to succeed. We are all independent and free to achieve our full potential!
Through the following two ideas let’s learn what “independence” is and how we can appreciate our freedom in a way that helps us to touch the sky!
Our understanding of independence can often become veiled in prejudices and narrow mindedness. Freedom of speech doesn’t mean the right to be rude, instead it gives you the liberty to speak the truth and engage in productive speech, and the freedom of action doesn’t mean you can walk around without a mask when the whole world is requesting you not to, instead it gives you the liberty to study and research into pandemics and find potential solutions.
Independence merely gives you the freedom to become a better version of yourself. The joy of success can be the best feeling, after home cooked food of course - and independence encourages you to achieve that success. Hence we must not fall into the trap of exploiting our independence!
Respecting the Value of Time
While we have the freedom and ability to do what we please, when we please and how we please (for the most part,) we unfortunately do not have the freedom to turn back time. We have all these opportunities laid out in front of us - to excel in our passions, travel the world, invent and discover - and yet we have very limited time. We often forget that our clocks are ticking, and we spend this limited time towards pursuing wasteful activities and letting our independence to shine go to waste.
We have the gift of independence, which many children across the world do not, and so we must appreciate this liberty to grow and achieve to its full potential and aim to make sure every single child on this planet is born with the same privilege of independence as you and I have. The secret to doing so is simple - merely utilize each second of your day in productivity and mindfulness.
Summing up, as proud Indians, we are all born with a double-locked secret treasure trove of “freedom,” and the two keys required to open the enchanted chest is that of “discipline” and “hardwork.” So, are you ready to unlock your freedom?