Our Lives and the Better Half – Judy Dimhoihkim, HOD of Education

Growing up, the world around us begins to change. In what seems like the world changing before us, more often than not, it is actually our own views and priorities in life that are changing with time. So, what are our priorities now? In the competitive adult world, look around, and we find that everyone is busy trying to climb the ladder of success. Higher promotions, larger contracts or bigger pay rolls have largely come to define the word success for us. But what about the better half of our lives, our personal fulfillment? In our quest for success, have we ever thought about what we might be losing out on? A hectic life prone to monotony in which we don’t even have the time to sit back and celebrate the little joys of life with our loved ones. Being successful in life is a wonderful feeling but what an even greater joy it is when we can share it with the people who matter to us.

Our Lives and the Better Half

We all want to be amazing, successful and be regarded as an important figure in the society. So while we seek success and are addicted to it, our relationship is at stake. The close knit family, loving and fun-filled friendship diminishes. There is nothing wrong in being ambitious, competitive and seeking material wealth. But is it worth to risk the bond and the priceless relationships we have? This is one important question we need to reflect upon in this techno-savvy and competitive age. In the hustle and bustle of the 21st century, it is more important than ever to have a meaningful relationship. The world today is highly competitive and everyone is addicted to success. Different profession demand different working hours and commitment. One’s success depends upon the amount of time one is able to devote and the deeper one engages in the work, and then comes the reward in terms of promotion and attractive packages. However, in the meantime we shy away from giving quality time to our loved ones. The result is, there appears a gap in our relationship with our family, friends and people who matter to us. The parent-child relationship is no longer healthy. It is surprisingly sad to learn that some parents are ignorant about the standard in which their children are at school. We are so immersed in our work that we neglect working on our relationships with others. Aristotle said that man is a social animal. This implies that we need others to celebrate good times with, provide comfort and solace in bad times and help us cope with the loneliness, symptomatic of the modern age.  It is tragic that while we achieve higher positions in life and in our career, our relationships have sunk lower and lower to an extent where it wreaks havoc in our lives.

There is a big spike in divorce which is in part caused by a breakdown in communication. Among many factors, one cause of this is when both the players fail to invest in the relationship. It’s more alarming to see the rate of depression in children with working parents who are devoid of parental care and love for whom parenting is an alien term. Research reveals that a family that eats together have lower rates of substance abuse, teen pregnancy, depression, as well as higher grades and self-confidence. In a tribal family, dinner time is when the family members indulge in conversations, exchange ideas and share their thoughts.  It does not mean that this is not the practice in other family set ups, but to suggest that this is particularly true with regard to a tribal family.

We are too preoccupied with our jobs, never spending quality time with those around us. How often do we sit back and think about the amount of time we have invested in our relationships? It might be a popular belief that when one reaches the pinnacle in his/her career or profession one earns happiness. Granted the success brings with it happiness but the happiness one feels will leave much to be desired without people who share the same intensity of joy, pride and happiness in the achievement. Our satisfaction in life is linked with our relationship with others, especially close ones. Let’s not forget that the more we succeed at relationships the more successful we will be in life with all of them. Success depends on the ability to connect with others.

Work will never end but our life will. Finding the right balance between work and building relationships might seem a daunting task, given the sacrifice one has to make, but the benefits to our well-being are worth the effort. So friends (who are workaholics) let’s set a time to shut off work, block out our work calendar at times for nurturing friendships and cultivating relationships with loved ones. Take time to celebrate major milestones, achievements and birthdays of family and friends. Once we find this balance we’ll find enormous benefits; less stress, better relationship and better quality of life overall. Dear readers, if you want to be happy in life beyond the professional work you do, you have to enhance your relationship with people who matter to you. When we let our work take center stage in our lives long enough, we begin to feel terribly out of touch with the people we care about. Let’s consider re-arranging our priorities. If your work has taken over, it’s time for you to take a stand and regain control of your life. There are many ways we can leave work in its rightful place and spend time focusing on improving our personal life. There is a world of wisdom left to be unearthed. As the saying goes, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” 

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