Achievers not stress junkies – 8 March 2011

People work for different aims and motivations. Some work for having a job, earning money, making a living and feeding the family. Some work because they have to and are forced to do so but they think it a nuisance which has fallen on them. Few persons work for the pleasure and passion of it. A miniscule percentage of people identify themselves completely with their job and work with a missionary madness. This category makes the difference to the job, the body of work and to society on the whole.

The attitude towards work defines an individual’s personality. It could reflect in everything that he does in his personal life too. His or her sense of personal happiness will also come from the area of work satisfaction. Thus the area of work is a major defining point for development of the human individual. The majority does not seem to understand this simple truth. An under achiever, a mediocre achiever and a true achiever can be easily spotted by the trained eye.

Sneha is a meticulous worker, punctual, disciplined and obedient. She is dependable too and would be willing to spend a few extra hours at the office if required. You could rely on her to complete whatever task she is allocated. But her abilities stop there- she is unable or unwilling to go beyond the demarcated line and contribute creatively. She does not over exert her capacities and does not like to stretch herself beyond a point. She has restricted herself to the routine that she has mastered and hence has also restricted her role and status in the organization. She may have more areas of talent but is unwilling to explore them for whatever reasons. She does not harbor any secret dreams of making it big and better. She is happy and contented with whatever she has achieved. She is a good but mediocre achiever.

Let’s take Maitrayee as another example. She is lazy and shirks work. As a medical worker she is more interested in gossiping and whiling away her time discussing personal issues. She has to be reminded about her duties and has to be instructed about her tasks. She is irritating and annoying to the other team members and to the seniors. She is careless and carefree. If she is thrown out she would seek newer avenues. That’s the way she would live her life, floating around her without a specific goal. She is low in motivation and an under-achiever. Her life is a waste with no clear purpose to pursue.

Achievers are visible to the experienced expert eye. They are goal oriented, good with their skills, hard working and willing to go the extra mile. They are not afraid of working hard and taking up fresh challenges. They are constantly evolving and growing in many ways and looking for challenges for growth. They love moving on the fast track and work with excitement and enthusiasm. They speak a different language and think with a broad perspective. They have more clearly defined needs and aims of life. They are willing to master their own weaknesses within as well as mange the obstacles in the environment.

Although we love people to become high achievers we caution against becoming the Type A personality which is then detrimental to health and good living. In the process of achieving we must not forget the larger perspective of the purpose of life. When we talk of achievers we are not talking of the Type A persona but are cautioning against it. Type A individuals have typically a high drive with over- ambitious goals, aggressive and highly competitive in pursuing their goals, have a fairly high degree of free-floating hostility, are impatient and pushy, poor with expressing their emotions, conscious about their status, power and wealth which they perceive as the only rewards worth pursuing. People with Type A personalities are often ‘workaholics’ who multi-task and push themselves with deadlines. All these characteristics cause stress in the mind and body and makes them prone to psycho-somatic ailments. They become ‘stress junkies’ as they are popularly called! The differentiation between the two must be made very clear to all.

Published in The Hitavada – Future 8 March 2011


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