THE OTHER day I got pretty stressed reading a book about stress management. There was nothing wrong about the tenets mentioned in the tome but for the fact that the number of pages and the minute font size gave me a severe headache, and I was left with managing it - leading to further stress.
One could perfectly relate to that. Especially when one recalls the stern English teacher who used to make us stand on chairs for not completing homework. And god forbid if we forgot our verbs, as then we had to switch places with the corner dustbin. Somehow, we all came out alive from the torture, and we dare not misplace our verbs till date. What stress! Thankfully, today’s kids are spared the trouble. They can make n number of mistakes and wonders of wonder - they won’t even be failed. What bliss! It is only when they grow up and joyously join work that a cloud crosses over their brow. How on earth do you write a business letter? After all those years of fine education they are somehow at loss for words. Seems like the teacher had believed in ‘no stress to the kid mantra’ and never expected them to get good grades. Imagine the trauma that it would have entailed if the teacher would have got all worked up about the grades.
The point is that after studying French and horse riding, all in the air conditioned comfort of a luxury school situated in the very lap of nature, when kiddo is finally ready for the real world he gets a shock. STRESS DOES EXIST. After a lot of stress, endured in clearing the entrance tests, kiddo finally gets admission in a premier management institute. For two years, his back breaks with all the stress - the presentations, projects, classes all thrown in together. Such killing work. But then soft-spoken men in tuxedos descend on the school campus and train them into how to manage stress when finally they do become a MANAGER. Armed with all this knowledge, kiddo finally steps into the corporate jungle.
And with a rude jolt finds that the boss is from hell. And wants to take him along too. The colleagues after studying all about teamwork and ethics as absolutely necessary in a business environment are bent on breaking all the ‘rules’. They will backbite, backstab, gossip, apple polish, mow him down, if need be, and move ahead. Ethics be da***d. Can you imagine the stress that creates! And kiddo rushes to the Soul Curry Baba for solace who in turn suggests that you must sell your hard-earned Ferrari for redemption. What a cruel stroke of destiny. It was a Ferrari that he wanted all his life. And now it seems that for a stress-free life, he has to give up that and be a monk!
The mind benumbs at such a cruel fate for dear kiddo, who knew so much about stress management and still failed to mange the same. Change is good and I have nothing against it, but sometimes I can’t help but stop and admire the wisdom of our dear Ms Roy - the English teacher who didn’t spare the rod and taught us to mind our p’s and q’s. And how to survive a harsh world in the process.
On a parting note, the writer does not endorse corporal punishment but does feel disturbed at the increasing cases of suicide among students at a tender age.
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