“What the heck… I don’t believe in such superstition or fictional jargon…”
No No, those aren’t my words… but the majority of educated, well-informed, tech- savvy professionals would feel exactly the same.
Well, the answer is Yes and No… That purely depends on an individual’s perception…
Let me share a little story of mine to put things in a perspective. Little did I know that how early in life you found yourself at receiving end!!!!
I had just completed my first grade and was fooling around before the beginning of the new semester. I was very excited to make the most of my (whole two months) summer vacation. During those golden days of my life, “B” always came before “A” in my dictionary. In a typical Indian family scenario, there are ONLY four words that have significant values which would suffice everything, almost everything….
A – Astrology
B – Bollywood
C – Cricket
D – Devotion
Coming back to my childhood, I used to be a movie buff so I was making big plans to watch lots and lots of movies, as much as possible. But as usual, fate had some different plans for me.
As soon as my summer vacation started, my beloved late father got an idea to ruin my mornings. (No offense, I still have very high regards for him)
Very next morning, I found myself in the middle of the ground, enrolled for cricket net practice. Mind you, it used to start at 5.45 am in the morning.
That was the first incident of my life when I felt so tiny, helpless and of course “frustrated” – the first “F” word, which I added long after in my vocabulary once I started working in IT.
In fact, my height was so short that a full-size cricket bat was more noticeable than me. But I gathered myself and decided to go with the flow (as if I had any choice).
Within few days of practicing, “C” got precedence over “B” (Please refer to the listing above). I started liking the game and thanked my father a million times (in my thoughts) for introducing me to the new facade of my life and for giving me such a great opportunity. I quickly started learning batting, bowling, and fielding (my favorite) and was emerging as a shining all-rounder. I was a medium pace bowler and very attentive fielder (long before Kaif and Yuvi) but needed finishing touch to my batting skills.
Observing my skills very closely, my coach “Sir Paradkar” (no, not even a distant relative of “Sir Achrekar – Tendulkar’s coach”) started encouraging (pushing) me to start with batting practice just after our warm-up workouts.
Sir Paradkar, especially for me, managed to get the smallest cricket bat so that I can learn quickly without much hassle. A few days later, results were enormously positive and so was the expectation of my coach. Somewhere deep down inside, a perception had been created subconsciously, without my knowledge.
“I was becoming a victim of my own Success”
As we were approaching the end of the training session and so was my vacation, we had to play a friendly match amongst ourselves to demonstrate our learning.
My coach had already ordered entire cricket kit for me, keeping in mind, my height and size. Well, anybody familiar with cricket knows very well, where to start with i.e. “Abdominal guard”. That seemed correct for the first time in life that “A” is in the right sequence after all. A couple of perceptions were learned…
“Precaution is always better than cure”
“You got to get rid of your inhibitions”
The match started, we lost the toss and were asked to field. We were quite escapists about two things, morning pitches are more difficult to bat on and at a later stage fielding becomes difficult under (35 degrees) hot sun in Mumbai (Bombay). Please, we are also humans and have the same intolerance attitude towards global warming. Another perception…
“Why God? Why Me?”
Quick fall of wickets and suddenly, I was in the middle, with two foot cricket bat and oversized helmet ready to face the pace bowler. Another perception had created.
“No matter how prepared or skilled you are yet you are shit-scared deep down inside when it comes down to the performance”.
Facing the first ball, ttuuccck… Full face, right in the middle of the bat, a classic straight drive… I almost screamed “yeah four!!!” but all in vain…. Again another perception was created.
“Assumption or over-confidence is the mother of all the problems.”
Now starts the actual story… My partner called for 2 and I just started to run at full stretch… not more than two-three steps I fell hard on my knees… What happened next… Actually, doesn’t matter…
Where did it all go wrong? A disastrous situation for me, my team, our supporters, and overall brawny points for our enemies (opposite team) to make a fun of me… that could be a matter of winning or losing the match…
Let’s start all over again….
- I joined summer camp without much choice (As we join new organization, just to get better prospects)
- I started taking interest and liking it as well (We try to find and learn new things on the job)
- I started performing and became a rising star (the same thing happens to most of us as well)
- I was given more and more exposures / responsibilities (Need I say more)
- I got great support from my coach, teammates who helped me to overcome my inhibitions. (Same story, same perception)
- I was given a fair opportunity to perform and face the opponents but in the last moments, failed… (Think of client demo, crucial presentation or project delivery)
Then I realized what went wrong….
I never ever practiced (not even a single time) to run with pads on between the wickets… I missed, my senior teammates missed and importantly even my coach missed that minute key point that would have impacted the outcome…
It’s now time for a deep introspection… are we practicing enough with pads on… In our scenario, it could be termed as new technology, new role, or exploring new territories.
Another perception appended to my memory
“Practice makes a man perfect”
Coming back to the core of the subject…. For me, the answer is (intermittently but) Yes, I do experience “Deja Vu” … And the irony is that, most of us just don’t realize… Perhaps
“Ignorance is bliss”
But are you sure about that?