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We are the building blocks, Catch us young.

Malavika Krishna, IIK Young Reporter
Wednesday, January 22, 2020
We are the building blocks, Catch us young.

We all know that for a building to be strong, its foundation should be strong and at the same time the building blocks should be placed and cemented properly. Similar is the case with our Nation. The building blocks being the younger minds of today and foundation being the legacy left by our forefathers. Many at times we think that what change can an individual bring to the whole nation? Such are the thoughts that cripple a nation’s progress. On the contrary just imagine that everyone believes they can do something good for the nation. Then that becomes a collective effort and paves way to national development and growth. Nation building starts from us as an individual.

Recently when Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh were declared as the 8th & 9th Union Territory of India, one of the heroes of our yester years was remembered with ‘Pride’- Sardar Vallabhai Patel. He was the reason for an India in the shape that we children find on textbooks and maps today. He was the one who kept India intact when it was withering away for many reasons. To celebrate his birthday, and to re-affirm the inherent strength and resilience of our nation to withstand threats to the integrity and security of our country, we commemorate Rashtriya Ekta Diwas every year.

Do you think that such great men popped up one fine day? No. They are the responsible and truly patriotic kids of yesterday. They found it important to play their role effectively for the nation; not when they grew up but right from their childhood. In Kerala we have a saying which states that there is no benefit of giving any required care for the soil or plant after it blooms. To get a healthy crop, the necessary care should be given right from preparing the soil, instead of worrying after seeing the bad yield. Today’s younger generation is tomorrow’s leaders. So catch them young.

First and foremost, know our nation. Know its rich heritage and tradition. Know its values and culture. Know how Mother Nature has blessed our land with resources. Know how rich was its educational capabilities that people from far and beyond came here in seek of knowledge. Know our Gurus and leaders who set the path. Know the ups and downs we faced all through these years. Let all these seep inside to trigger a spark of pride about our nation which will in-turn helps the children grow developing a responsibility to keep up the legacy.

Leadership is not merely leading a group from the front. It has various dimensions. Developing leadership qualities also has aspects which are quite overlooked upon. A leader should have the ability to understand the strength and weakness of every member of the team and guide them to achieve the goal together. Teamwork is something that might sound simple. With compassion, we have to unify and take everyone jointly.

As children we don’t have much challenges to face compared to what different people around the world are suffering, yet we must learn how to tackle our own small issues. Tackling situations is another quality anyone should possess. One might have to face several hurdles in life, but a person with leadership skills would never run away from them; instead will stand head-strong, face and solve them. Presence of mind is much needed in this and purposeful effort should be made to get it instilled even during childhood.

Children are known for their innocence. Let kindness and compassion be our signature. Be there for others whenever we can. It can be just a few words to calm down a person, or a gesture of gentleness and gratitude. As students we spend most time of our days in school and our fellow students are our world. Peer pressure and stress is common these days. Not everyone can handle it. If we feel that any of our friends are suffering from mental depression, we must act quickly and help them out to get the help they need. At times a simple presence of someone to understand is more than enough to pacify themselves.

Learn to respect everyone; elders for their million dollar life experience and the fellow beings for what they are. Understand that God has made everyone with a purpose and with talents in one way or other. Morality and ethics also play a particularly significant role; to choose between the angel and devil sitting on our shoulders. Straight roads may be harder and longer, but it will always be better ride. Whatever scenario we might be in we must never take or give bribes. If we take that decision ourselves, then we can eradicate corruption from our nation.

We must be responsible to the society and community we live in. We owe our society a lot for our wellbeing. A healthy society is another strong pillar of a healthy nation. We should do our duties, be it towards parents, teachers, friends, or to the nation. As responsible young citizens of our nation, we must make sure that our negligence to a particular incident should not affect the lives of many. As a teenager I can relate to the following example. If we know a close friend or even an acquaintance who is addicted to drugs, smoking, alcohol or any such activities, what should we do? It’s not about making a mess and creating trouble for them and their parents, but we must report it to an elder and make sure that they get the help they need, instead of just walking away or joining in with them.

Do you think children have to wait until they become an adult to help our community? We have seen in the last two years that when the different states in India were affected by one disaster or the other, it was the youth that unified the rescue operations. Those who could not go directly into the field, coordinated through social media. Volunteering youth is a promise to our nation. It is often said that children are the ones with innovative and creative thoughts. Come up with plans, policies and ideas; who knows, tomorrow it may get materialised for a better nation.

The inability to accept rejection and failures in life is what has led to a steep increase in the suicides reported in our country, especially among the youth. We need to train our mind to be strong. Learn from our mistakes and experiences we go through. It is always important to understand a situation, analyse it and then take decisions instead of jumping into conclusions. Silent our mind through yoga and meditation. It is sad that even though yoga originated from India, we Indians take it for granted. Let us understand its benefits and practice it on a daily basis to face the world with confidence and a smile. Learn to balance stress and leisure in life.

Proactive youth is the core of any nation. It is not the academic marks that matter de facto in our lives. But the knowledge that we gain from schools and our surrounding. As students, all our efforts are confined to the boundary of our school or the community we live in. but in long run, this will help developing us as tomorrow’s leaders. The foundation has been laid extraordinarily strong by our forefathers. Now our responsibility is to place the blocks properly and cement it. Our responsibility is to develop ourselves into such an individual that when time comes, we will be all set and will have an unclouded vision about what the nation needs. Leaders are not born, but made.

Happy Republic Day to all proud citizens of our mighty nation. Jai Hind!!

Malavika Krishna
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