Augment or Perish – This isn’t your fairy tale land

I had woken up on time and started my day on a pleasant note. A feat you’ll know if you have been running down on constant thoughts of helplessness & despair and sleep cycles of stress & procrastination. I was almost euphoric over my little milestone until I failed myself (once again).

I had gone ahead, as usual, voicing my confusion; giving her a chance to dump a new set of responsibilities on my shoulders. Yet, my potential sickness post-vaccination failing to save me from forced responsibilities came as a rather unkind shock. I spent hours fuming over the person in charge.

Mom listened with patience to my day’s tale. But, encouraging my stress hormones post vaccination wasn’t on her agenda. She simply told me to work hard enough that I someday could have the requisite position to reward goodness as I felt strongly for the case of competence over butter.

The fact of the moment remains that irrespective of our emotions about the same, power would continue to lie with authorities and we can’t always choose our bosses.

It reminded me of yet another lesson that had made its way to my keyboard this semester. Prof. Archana R Singh had aptly given us the most pragmatic formula for thriving in our professions.

“Augment or Perish.”

Besides all the emotional inspiration; it is really the most basic fact about life. You can either adapt to the swing life offers or you will perish in no time as life moves on. To expect people to reward your competence or ethics is rather irrational.

Thriving without compromising your basic values is your personal ambition. Moreover, it isn’t like you are the only honest soul out there. But you must also learn to make your way irrespective of the route your fellow takes. Honest can still survive, competent can still thrive. But you must remain willing to put in the hours it takes to take the longer route.

We all have felt that apparent helplessness when somebody in the position of authority abused their power to get things their way. We might have suffered injustice along the sides. But our crying over the same doesn’t do us any good.

Every now and then; we conveniently remark how levels of humanity and compassion are dwindling in the world; how we have been wronged and felt powerless in our position. But, if we could just look around ourselves how many times in a year do we even think about taking the effort to reward kindness, novel initiatives or even basic goodness for that matter.

We literally teach people to be selfish and limit themselves to their own battles by exploiting them every single time they attempt to defy the odds and be kind. People in our country literally stopped taking accident victims to the hospital in the fear of false accusations and legal implications.

Everyone would love to help you on your Facebook yet none of those people who claim to have sympathies for you would ever dare to show up for you when life hits you on the head. The honest fact is even the best of your friends also have their own battles to fight.  I would also love to feel sorry for each of us but apologies. It simply isn’t the way life works.  You augment or you perish. Life’s business is as plain as that.

PS – Title Inspiration Courtesy: Prof. Archana R Singh, Augment or Perish

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