The power of Resilience that my state taught me.
30th October 2008. I still remember the day. As I was getting in my car, there was a big blast. The ground shook and the sound was deafening.
Approximately 500 meters from my house, there was a bomb blast. It was one of the 3 serial bombs that had gone off in my city that day.
The whole city went into chaos. The blasts were in the most crowded public places. Hundreds of people were killed all over the city.
It was not the first time we had heard a blast. A few years ago it was outside my father’s office and before that near to my college. It was a regular news in the newspaper.
Bomb blasts, shut down of state, army check points at every few kilometres, and an uncertainty of not just tomorrow but even the today of life.
There was hardly any development in the state because of the militancy problems. There were no big universities or corporates operating in the state. There were no opportunities. Unemployment was very high.
In the midst of all this, there was one thing which was awe inspiring. That was the courage and resilience of the people.
We didn’t sit still waiting for opportunities. We created them in that closed space.
I saw the aspirations in the youth of my state. I saw the talent. And the gift of a powerful mindset.
That which refused to give up.
That’s how I grew up.
We learned leadership and refused to let the circumstances crush our dreams.
Inspite of all the limitations, we moved ahead and we persisted.
Today my city is flourishing, it’s developing, it’s growing. And the credit goes entirely to the people who stayed put. Who didn’t give up in crisis. Who persisted for more than 30 years to not let the state go down.
My state “Assam” in North East India never gave up. It has still kept it’s heritage of green lands and tea gardens. It’s natural beauty is still awe inspiring. And the warmth of it’s people is still felt in the hearts of everyone who visits it.
We prospered because we stood united. One for all and all for one. We were a team. We worked for the state and for every citizen of the state.
We didn’t wait for the change. We didn’t wait for the opportunities. We led the change and created the opportunities.
Resilience is within us. It’s the power of the human mind. And we all have it. For us, it was an unconscious choice. A state of mind that came naturally.
We were almost never in the national news for anything positive. But that never eroded the positive mindset of the people, who stood united with a single vision. To make the state grow, to provide opportunities to the youth and to develop the infrastructure even with the limited resources that we had. We didn’t concede defeat and stand still complaining about what we didn’t have.
We didn’t wait for a leader to change our outlook towards growth because growth was the outlook of every single one of us. So we all chose to be the one leading the change.
The qualities that was found in every citizen of the state were-
But most importantly, every single person always greeted the other with a smile.
I learned resilience by being part of a team that had one vision. Growth and Development.
Those learnings empowered me to create and lead the change in every organisation that I have worked with.
Crisis is not the time to despair. It’s the time to stand united and lead the change that will take us out of the crisis. No matter how long it takes to do so.
Bad times never last. Optimism and a positive attitude fuel the efforts that makes good times never that far away.
Assam is free of militancy today and has been growing rapidly. And in all the growth what still stands out is that the very fabric of the state and it’s people, the unity, the warmth, and resilience still exists and binds us all together with the vision of growth.
My state taught me the power of human connections and the true meaning of teamwork.
We had dreams even when there was no assurance of a stable life or a future.
We survived the crisis because we had the vision to thrive and we wanted a different future. A better future.
2020 has been a difficult year for the whole world. We have lost a lot. But whether we lose our aspirations, our dreams, our courage, our resilience is a choice which only we can make.
It’s 27 days to the new year. Make your plans for 2021. Not with fear and uncertainty in your mind. But with hope, dreams and faith.