I had an opportunity to interact with the readers of a famous Tamil magazine. It was a two-day programme. At the end of the programme, a young man asked me. “Swamiji! I am a postgraduate. It is more than ten years since I completed my studies. So far, I have not received even a single interview card from the employment exchange. So, I am working as a cashier in a restaurant. This job has no connection whatsoever with my educational qualifications.
Last month, there was a shortage of cash at the counter. I do not know how it happened. The shame of being accused loomed large in my mind. I thought I could pawn one of my wife’s jewellery and replace the missing amount. But my wife refused. I asked my mother. She only fired me, but did nothing to help me! In this world, my own mother and wife were not ready to save my honour!” I told him, “Leave alone the fact that your mother and wife do not trust you. Do you trust yourself? Think deeply. You lack the confidence to take risks in life. So, you are stuck in a job that you dislike. Since you dislike your job, you are unable to do it with full involvement. Because of this, you are not able to remember how that money was missing. So, your problem is not your wife or mother. It is you, yourself! Lack of self-confidence is your problem. First try to overcome it.” In order to foster growth of self-confidence, three qualities are absolutely essential. Firstly, we should never give into worries, sadness and self-pity.
Instead learn to feel good and build self-esteem. Secondly, we should learn new skills. If we do not acquire new skills, we cannot develop self-confidence!
What I mean by skill is, expertise in some field, which is of interest to us. It could be carpentry, gardening, painting, cooking, plumbin. Select any field, learn it and train yourself in it. Finally, the ability to take on responsibility and be accountable.
Swami Sukhabodhananda is the founder and chairman of Prasanna Trust. He is a respected spiritual leader who is often referred to as the ‘Corporate Guru.’