Follow your own dreams by Akif Abdulamir

We have to be careful with the advice we give our children. We all want our children to succeed in life, but we should not advise them to gain success at any cost.

One can easily spot talent in young children. While this talent should be nurtured carefully, parents should refrain from exerting pressure on young ones to follow a particular path.
 In fact, they should be allowed to dream on their own about their future and destiny because the last thing they want is a controlling parent to constantly coax them into following a certain career path.
If your child says he wants to be a policeman, then you should be fine. Don’t attempt to change your child’s mind, just because you are convinced that he or she will excel in some other field.
Since the police force typically does not do too well, you might be tempted to want your child to become a banker. Some parents might notice their child’s ability effectively persuade people. “He is good at taking money from me. Perhaps, he would be a good businessman,” you may justify yourself. At the risk of sounding cynical, even fraudsters are good at swindling people out of their money. They too have the power to persuade people and embezzle them. If you think in this particular way, you are basically asking your child to only choose a career that would allow him to earn loads of money.
The advice to “seek your fortune from your talent” is not the one that I would pass on to my children. It is not only misleading, but also quite crass.
Fortune seeking should never be associated with skills or professionalism, since it has the tendency to push one towards greed.
I am not saying that people, who have made a fortune, are greedy. But one cannot choose a career with wealth as the driving force. This sort of mentality really takes the shine out of the real essence of living.
It also blunts one’s abilities to communicate with forces outside the realm of their blinding ambitions. But still, many parents try to force and persuade their children into decisions because they vicariously live their children’s lives.
When my cousin’s son said he wanted to be a mechanic, his father looked at him with sheer disappointment.
“What’s wrong with you!” he snapped at him. “Do you know what kind of job a mechanic does?”
I knew exactly what was on his mind: The unpleasant image of his son covered with grease from head to toe and reeking with oil. He had always hoped to boast to his friends that his only son would choose a ‘prestigious’ profession like being a doctor. To him, mechanical work was demeaning, just like carpentry.
I could not help thinking that my cousin - a store supervisor - was pressurising his son that way because he had failed to live his own dreams. Since he could not be a doctor, he wanted to make sure his son was one. He did not realise that a child’s competencies are nurtured best by gentle guidance, not through external and assertive influence.
I wanted to ask him whom would he call for help if his car broke down in the middle of a busy highway? Certainly not going to be a man in a white coat, but, in fact, a greasy-faced one who would promptly fix his car so that he could make it in time for his appointment.
Of course, I did not tell him that. What he has overlooked is that his son may not make a fortune, but certainly his talents, whatever they are going to be, will be welcomed by many.
The writer is an Oman-based freelance columnist. This article has been reproduced from the Khaleej Times.


Leave A Comment:

Powered by Blogger.
Design by