The winner at large

Ordinary people doing extraordinary things and producing amazing results are known as winners.
Winning is achieving personal, social and spiritual goals which are ethical, long lasting and socially beneficial to improve the quality of life of the winner as well as others in society.
Sometimes individual goals may not help society but this cannot be termed ethical winning. One has to ensure that winning should contribute towards healthy advancement and growth of society. For example, if someone’s personal goal is to cut down 50 trees and another person’s goal is to plant 50 trees in a day, whom will you call a winner? To me the one who is contributing towards the society is a winner.
However, achieving personal goals is important. We are happy and satisfied only when we are achieving and growing, without which life is directionless and sapless. Success brings happiness, prosperity and growth if earned in an ethical and positive manner.
At a young age, like any other boy in his 20s, I was expected to win and to make a successful career so that I can make life “interesting” for myself and for those who were dependent, directly or indirectly, on me.
Before I got a job, whenever I asked my mother to cook the dinner of my choice she looked at me with a stern look as if questioning the authority of my request. Whenever I sought permission of my father to take his car for a day to hang out with friends, he would refuse citing the high prices of petrol. Whenever I visited my friend’s house, their parents turned preachers and gave us long lectures on how to land a job, at least, a clerical job.
But the day I cleared the exam for the post of deputy superintendent of police, I became “successful” and the “winner” tag was attached. The world around me changed completely — my mother started cooking dishes that only I liked; my father started lending his car; friends, cousins, colleagues, neighbours, mentors, teachers, preachers and everyone around started to regard me with respect. Suddenly I became a mentor, a coach, a counsellor for all. Those who were working hard to be successful started approaching me for guidance.
This is when I realised the importance of winning. In fact, winning is everything.
However, we must also think about the logic of working hard and getting no returns? How smarter people get better results than hard-working people.
How come some people plan flawlessly and execute them?
I feel that human beings appreciate but only when they learn, grow and change as per the situations, this can be learnt with the help of “out of the box thinking” which differentiate leaders from followers and winners from losers. Winning changes the perception and attitude, however balanced and ethical, winning only can give the real taste of success, the opportunity cost of winning should not be so high that the achievement looks inconsequential in the long run.
Look at some of the early achievers. How much mentally and physically healthy are they? I do not think someone in his late 30s or early 40s who has achieved a high position in an organisation but suffer from high BP or have acquired a heart disease is a winner or achiever.
Some concepts of winning may look attractive in short run but should be avoided keeping the overall success in mind. The real success is not only personal but socio-economical and even spiritual too.
Gone are the days when we thought that we can win only when the other loses. Success is a win-win situation, where you win with others and not against others. This is possible when you align your targets with corporate goals and compete against situations in place of competing against colleagues.
The behaviour and functional abilities once learnt can put you on the track of winning and others who observe someone on the same track and notice him/her winning every time can call them “lucky”. How “lucky” we consider Sachin to be gifted a Ferrari? But we tend to forget the hard work Sachin has put in to score 100 centuries and to prove himself in adverse circumstances.
Winning is a journey and not destination. One should not sit idle after winning the initial goals and set bigger, higher goals. But it is always important to remember that the real winner is the one who has achieved goals that are bigger and make a difference in the lives of others, not just his own. When you look back on your achievements, ask what others have achieved because of you.

The writer is the author of Winning is Everything and Safalta Ki Aur 10 Aasan Kadam (in Hindi)

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