Father figures in our lives play an important role in shaping our outlook towards the external environment and leading our lives amidst balancing a variety of complexities around us. We grow up observing their behaviours and thoughts; we are inspired by many things they do and the methods they adopt. We learn many concepts such as honesty, integrity, compassion, respect, trust, responsibility, accountability, stakeholder management and many more from our parents, teachers and similar father figures in our neighbourhood. These learnings are often passive and we do not realise that we have learnt so many lessons in our primitive days. If we are conscious of those learnings, we can do better as leaders.
Deserve before you desire
One of the things we learn from our father figures is honesty with oneself first. We are discouraged and reprimanded as children when we try snatching away or stealing things we like, desire or feel attracted towards. These could be food and drinks, toys or clothes. We are disciplined for covering up things, bending rules and telling lies. We were asked to claim things which are rightfully ours than covetously eyeing those belonging to others. We were all told to be respected persons as we grow up; moreover, we knew that respect has to be earned through our performance and behaviours. We knew that respect cannot be demanded; it has to be earned by hard work, determination, intelligence and some elements of good luck.
Our parents, teachers and seniors around us kept drilling these teachings into our heads. We were asked to earn our space before desiring them.
What do we see around us?
We witness successful people around us who continue to demonstrate these qualities, we seem to have learned them all at our homes and schools when we were young. However, some of us seem to have forgotten them or given those ideas a quiet burial due to some unfortunate turn of events in one’s life. We hear about corruption, theft, infidelity, dishonesty and violence; often we come across situations where some people are unwilling to listen to others’ ideas, are intolerant of diversity and won’t let various kinds of plants blossom. We see some seeking shortcuts and putting insincere efforts to claim successes and rights.
Such chaos is rooted in the fact that those individuals have been misled along the way. Probably they came across the wrong examples and were attracted towards them burying the concepts they observed in school and homes. As the number of such instances increases, our homes and schools fail to inspire and guide our young people on the right paths.
What can be done?
We need more debates and dialogues to re-establish the age-old order of what’s good and what’s bad. Our father figures have to lead by example, reiterate the goodness of a disciplined approach in one’s life, spread the success stories of people who worked hard, were honest, balanced various conflicting forces in their lives well were compassionate, consistently exhibited ethical standards, adapted to the changing scenarios without compromising the principles and demonstrated resilience. We have to live these at our workplaces, homes and communities; showcase these to our young and inspire them to follow the paths of honesty, integrity, determination, resilience, adaptability, consistent display of ethical standards, staying on the path of knowledge, diversity, purity of mind and compassion.