Life is wonderful when it is built on the foundation of gratitude. Someone said the left hand should not know what the right hand is giving. This may be an old adage but true and valid even today. The more we give, the more we get in life.
Some may say that I am saying this because I have got all that I wanted in life. It may be true today but I was born in a low middle class family and lived life as a child in a very frugal way. We were inculcated this value in our early life years and it has got ingrained in our blood. I have experienced the joy of giving all through my life.
I would further extend to say that life is first about giving and then about taking from others. Most of us are keen to to take everything we want from others but are reluctant to give. In my view, giving comes first and then only we have a moral right to take from others.
It is interesting to realise that most people are not interested in your money alone. The earlier we realise it, the better it would be for our overall growth. People are looking for your time, they are looking for sharing their joy and sorrow with you. People want moral support. Even simply said, they want a patient ear – someone who will listen to them.
As a child we realise very early in life that there are not many around us who are good listeners. Even in listening, let us give our patient ear to someone before we expect others to listen to us patiently. We are generous in talking but impatient in listening. The more we listen, the better we understand people and the more we learn.
As an adolescent, we are impatient and stubborn and want the world to move our way or the highway. This is time to realise that we need go give back more to the people around us who have made us what we are today.
Even as an adult, our expression of gratitude is limited till the period we think we have arrived in life. Once we reach a stage in our career and life where we feel that we have arrived, we tend to forget the people who enabled us to reach there. It is at this time we need to give more than we take. We need to to express our gratitude in both monetary and non monetary terms.
The most successful people in life are humble. They are always grounded and give back more than what they have got in life. It is this humility and gratitude which set them apart in society and we admire them forever.
Arrogance and selfishness will never help us succeed in life. Nobody likes to interact with someone who thinks he or she is beyond human imagination. All of us are human and we may err at times and that is fine. It is fine as long as we realise our mistakes and are willing to learn from them.
As in the photo above, we have to grateful for all that we have rather than worry about all that we don’t have.
Life is all about giving first before asking for anything. As I said repeatedly giving does not mean it may cost us money. Giving time, respect or listening to people does not cost anything but is valued immensely.
Let us learn to give before we take.
S Ramesh Shankar
9th December 2020