Psychology of Struggle

by Emily Smith
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Living in distorted houses in narrow streets, walking long hours to reach the work place, travelling in packed buses and trains, dining over insufficient food sharply reminds us of the tormenting days which people live at some point of time in their lives. Days pass by, time changes, life moves on but what remain is the thought and experience gathered in the memory’s pages of history which we call ‘the past’. Essentially these passed events attach certain valuable aspects to the people who travel through the path of difficulty. The famous saying “tough time never last, tough people do” by Robert Schuller holds true here.

It is never the intensity of the situation but what matters is psychology of the individual confronting the situation. Some fight and overcome the barriers on the path of success while others succumb to the pain and hardship of the thorny roads, wrestling with such odd times arouse a sense of courage, tolerance and patience which are some of the important qualities required for survival.

Now we can understand the significance of the word ‘struggle’ which relates to every living being on this planet. No matter whether it is a sapling bursting out of the earth surface to become a plant and grow or a baby, being born tearing out the womb of the mother to face the world. Life broadly has two inevitable phases, one filled with pleasure and happiness while the other seems to be very burdensome, hard and strenuous. Both have an equal relevance as far as one’s wholeness is concerned. Only good times minus tears make a person immature, dependent, and crippled. On the other hand only hardship makes a man tough, apathetic and cruel. Hence a balance of both the elements makes an individual complete. Moreover, one can enjoy happiness only when he understands the pain of suffering.

Struggle gives us an opportunity to grow and move ahead in life. Most famous people have tough tales of struggle beneath their success. Success holds high value because it required toil, perseverance, conviction and ambition to achieve it.

There have been many books and films on the lives of great men highlighting their struggle. One of the books is ‘The long pursuit’ by Roy Morris which narrates Abraham Lincoln’s thirty years of struggle with his political rival Stephen Douglas which shaped and impacted the future of the country. Coming to films recently there was a Marathi movie by Paresh Mokashi, ‘Harishchandrachi Factory’ which entailed the struggle of Dadasaheb Phalke in making Raja Harishchandra in 1913, India’s first feature film. The film had got nominated for the Oscars.

Likewise there are people who have climbed the ladder of success leaving behind bitter stories. I would cite names of some notable persons who with their skill, effort and entrepreneurship enhanced the vision of the nation and proved themselves in every wake of life. It would begin with a personality who believed in “Life is Growth”, he is considered as India’s most enterprising entrepreneur and is the founder of the largest private sector company, The Reliance Group. Yes, the name is not difficult to recall ‘The Guru’ Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani, a rewind journey of his life would bring into light certain aspects of struggle that he did before being called ‘Dhirubhai’. He was the son of a school teacher, his entrepreneurial career started by selling ‘bhajias’ to pilgrims on weekends, then he worked as gas-station attendant and a clerk in a oil company in Yemen. Ten years later Reliance Commercial Corporation was set which was his first office in an area of only 350 sq. ft. He lived with his wife and children in a small flat in Mumbai during that period. Dhirubhai started his first textile mill at Naroda, Ahmedabad; this was in the year 1977. The popular brand ‘Vimal’ was his product. With time he diversified to telecommunication, information technology, energy, power, retail, capital market and more. He initiated the ‘equity cult’ in India. It was from 1977 to 2007 that the business tycoon topped the list of being second rich in the world. Today, Group’s annual revenue is in excess of US $ 28 billion. Reliance started from scratch and is a famous name today related with almost all sectors of business. To succeed in life one needs education, wealth, family background, he had none of them but yet he moved from rags to riches with his courage, boldness and intiative. Dhirubhai Ambani is a unique person and truly is an entrepreneur par excellence.

Struggle sagas when powered with examples, becomes easy to connect with the pain and strain that these people have been through in their life. The next important person is Brijmohan Lal Munjal, Chairman of Hero Group, a name synonym with two wheelers in India, hails from a simple middle-class family who sensing the pain of partition came to Amritsar, he and his brothers started a small business of selling bicycle components to manufacturers, slowly and steadily together they expanded their business to various parts of the nation, Gradually they turned on to be one of the largest bicycle part suppliers of the country. Later in the year 1952 they entered the manufacturing segment, with government support Hero Cycles was started and it ruled the market. Then it collaborated with Japan’s Honda and the famous Hero Honda was rolled out. Today Hero Group stands as the leader in motorcycles, manufacturing world’s largest number of motorbikes.

It is not about few names but it is about many of us who work hard to excel in our respective fields and hence we can define our psychology of struggle the best. Here is another such definition of Dr. Karsanbhai Kodidas Patel, an industrialist who was conferred with Padmashri Award (2010), founder of Nirma Group, a known name associated with detergent, soap and cosmetics. Recollecting his struggle story, it starts as, at the age of 21 after completing his B.Sc he started working as a lab technician, his creative interests made him start a business where he would bicycle neighbourhood places selling handmade detergent packet at a very low cost, slowly his product was liked and preferred over other brands, further he ventured into his new business without being afraid of failure. In a short span he popularized his product in Gujarat and Maharashtra further penetrated into the national market. Karsanbhai refuted old business theories and formulated new ones making Nirma available at a competitively cheaper price. With his innovative strategies, environment-friendly method and labour intensive manufacturing techniques; he conquered the domestic detergent market segment for quite long time putting behind bigger established brands.

The number would grow in huge number if enlisted but one thing is certain every name leaves a message beneath that is to walk without stopping till you attain the goal. Lastly, it is exactly like looking at the glass half filled with water, for some it is half empty and for others the glass is half filled. In other words one can approach a situation positively where he learns, understands and grows. Enriched in experience he attains unattainable goals and makes himself another Dhirubhai, Dadasaheb or Lincoln. Struggle requires attitude and nothing else.



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