How do you define growth in Life? Relationships? Finances? Ambitions and Aspirations? Experience? What is it? How can I ever say that yes I'm growing, sprouting at a healthy pace? I believe its an answer we all must seek, within us, for that will give us the strength to carry on and look forward to every coming day.
While in school, I had 'Fine Arts' as my optional subject. Working on my own piece and watching it unfold into something beautiful, something out of my imagination coming onto paper, gave me such satisfaction. I couldn't wait for the next class. Times when I took my work home, I'd sit and keep working on it for hours without tiring myself. I had Science subjects which needed my attention more, but I couldn't let the painting in my hand go. These are the times which made me grow. I grew as an artist, I didn't pursue it but it moulded me in a different way.
Later when I was pursuing Computers, I loved every bit of it. It gave me a fascination, how things work? How nothing, absolutely nothing is impossible in the virtual world? What I learned there made me grow as a professional. It laid the foundation so strong, that piles and piles of work couldn't break. My work too, gave me a sense of achievement. Software can teach you things you can't learn otherwise. It gives you immense problem solving skills, for that is what we were doing on a day to day basis. I grew as a logical thinker, questioning myself to seek answers. Trying to solve my problems using a step by step approach. (Also, OOPS is not just for coding, you can very well implement them in your own life but I guess thats a completely different topic). This phase was a transformation.
My job gave me growth like nothing else. The responsibility that comes with it, things are not just examples or reruns, they are real, they affect real people. Its the real world. You're a professional. You can live life the way you want to, you can splurge or save, its your choice. I spent a lot and saved some and frankly, I don't regret. Living independently made me grow into a responsible adult. I respected money more, I respected people around me more. I learned a lot about how stuff works (not the website, but in real life).
Then happened my marriage and baby, and it was like starting from ground zero. All that I had ever learned was not required at all. The work projects were replaced by project-upcoming-festivals (which are spread throughout the year and particularly Aug-Nov are full of them) . Festivals like Diwali, which initially meant fun, rangoli and firecrackers, were now more strenuous. The famous 'Diwali ki safaai' became the toughest and lengthiest project of all times. I started questioning my growth. Yes I was growing as a mother to the cutest baby (every mother has one) and he taught me things I could have never known, but was that the only dimension which needed growth?
I was no longer independent, everything I had to do needed permission. My finances were not my finances. My choices were not my choices. Living under a controlled setup is extremely difficult for an independent person. This affected everything, my relationship with my husband, with my friends, with my family. The question remained the same still, Am I growing as a person here or have I been limited?
The thing is that the only person to stop your growth is you, yourself.
You live by yourself or with family, the decisions are always going to be your own. Your time and actions are always going to be your own. It needs sometime to figure out that being an adult doesn't mean just having fun. So the more you grow, the more wider your area of growth should be. If you limit your growth to your professional side, then yes being a stay at home parent is the end, but is it? I figured out that living in a family means respecting our relations, relations that stand the storms and these festivals bring us closer. (I'll discuss relations at length in another post though). I figured that growth can never be uni-dimensional. Growth is much more at a mental level than in quantitative terms.
If it's challenging you, testing you and pushing you, it's helping you become more of who you're meant to be! - Mandy Hale
When I started seeking my happiness, I started challenging myself. It is a play of thoughts for our mind. The moment we start believing that our growth is limited to our surroundings and people in it, it stops. It is only when we open our minds, to believe, to work on ourselves, that we start growing again. Its like the play/pause button on a TV remote. Situations may change, but the person in those situations will always be me. The more I take control of how I am going to act in a certain situation, the more balance I will have. The more self realisation, the more awareness, the more was my growth. Staying positive down the road helps us gain our balance back.
I started reading again and I realised that yes I'm better than I was yesterday. Reading motivated me to write, to share, to do more. I picked up my hobbies again. I formed a vision and I started working on it. I might be taking baby steps, but yes I am moving, and with that I could say, Yes! I am growing, with each moment, each day. I am learning something new and I am motivated to incorporate it in my Life. I have not let go of my foundation and keeping it strong is the way to go.