Article Written By: Anita Singh, Vice Principal, Shining Star International School, Abu Dhabi, UAE

“Few years back, I would never have dream of working in UAE and writing this post. but here I am doing right just that and sharing my experiences to show that it is never too late to achieve or start what we want to do. How many of us think starting a career at the age of 36?”

Hey you are too old to do that! How many times have we heard this when we attempted to do something new. Well , age really doesn’t matter as long as you have the urge to do something that you really want to do. I contemplated writing this earlier, but always put it aside thinking why will anyone be interested in reading what I did in my life. This morning, I told myself that no matter what, I am going to post what I felt maybe only for myself and just hope it will inspire someone who may be in a quandary of starting fresh at a later stage in life. Everyone is aware of the start of KFC; the gentleman smiling at us from the billboards and all packages started at an age when most of us may be thinking of retirement. So who cares what your age is, it is just a matter of numbers which we allow to take the front seat rather than the rear seat!!

Few years back, I would never have dream of working in UAE and writing this post. but here I am doing right just that and sharing my experiences to show that it is never too late to achieve or start what we want to do. How many of us think starting a career at the age of 36? Not many I guess!! Well, that’s exactly when I started. Family and especially my kids were my priority so; I ensured I was there for them at home till they were all in grade 2 and above. Once they were able to take care of themselves in small little ways, I took my first job as a teacher and from then on there was no stopping. Living in a small town in India did not have much scope for children to get quality education after grade 10.Things have come a long since then , but many years back it was a different scenario. I quite didn’t like the idea of staying back and letting my children go away. This some may think is not letting them become independent and grow on their own, but as an educator and a mother I felt I was responsible in some way as to how they grow up as adults into responsible members of the society. Once they were in college and started their own life they were going to be away from me, so why not spend more time now and by being close to them I could guide them to know the right from the wrong and be more accountable for their actions. The least I could think of was being with them as long they spread their wings with their careers. So, that was my next big leap. I looked for a job in a city close to my town, i.e. Kolkata, and shifted with family so that my kids could get better education and we could stay together as family. Then after few years with my children through with their education and settled in their own lives, I took the next leap forward by joining a school in Dubai. Its 5 years now and I am still growing and thinking how I can learn something new or do something new.

It is up to us and what we think of ourselves that really matters the most. You are never too old to learn or do things which you are passionate about… ‘Where there is a will there is a way.’ An old adage, but very true. How much you are willing to risk is what you need to decide and yes, it is not going to be a piece of cake walk when you take these risks. With the roses be prepared for the thorns. There is no substitute for hard work so is prepared for all the hard work initially to reap the fruits of your labour. Every time you are taking a leap of faith, it is the faith that matters the most. Don’t go ahead with anything halfheartedly, it will be difficult to keep it going. You need to believe in yourself for others to believe in you. Initially there are bound to be people who may have a different opinion from yours in your belief, but do not let that be deterrent in any which way. To believe in yourself, you need to respect and love yourself. It is only when we don’t respect ourselves that we let others take us for granted. This is not arrogance, this is to let everyone around you know that you value yourself as a person and expect the same from them. When I look back, I feel very satisfied, because every time I took a plunge, I was told by everyone around that you are risking your secure life and venturing into an unknown territory at this age. Being a strong headed person, I still went ahead. Today if someone had to ask me did I ever imagine doing all this, I would be short of words to reply. But I repeat again, age doesn’t really matter It’s all in the mind!!!

Stop worrying, put on your thinking hats, make up your mind and go for it…you are bound to be successful.

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