Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The 3D's of Success

Recently I have written some articles for PCC and Final students. This article is especially written keeping the CPT students in mind. This is because they are new to the course and they should know the basic factors that are required for this course. Nevertheless, it also applies to the students of IPCC and Final and even to students of any stream.

We all of know the concept of 3D. It means 3-Dimensional. But this concept of 3D is a bit different. Here this is a Formula for Success. More or less, this is also a three dimensional formula with three D’s standing for the three requirements below –

D – Desire

D – Dedication

D – Direction

These words seem to be simple words at the beginning, but there is a lot of deep meaning hidden inside them. We begin with these one by one.

The First “D” – Desire

The first D is of Desire. Desire means one’s wish or willingness or aspiration. Here it means that, it should be one’s own wish to join the course and complete it. Most of the students join the course, not because of their own wish. There are many reasons for their doing CA. Some of them are – their parents require them to do; because majority of their classmates has joined CA and they don’t want to remain alone from the group in a new college or course; or because their best friend has joined the course. These should not be your reasons for joining the course. You can achieve success, only if you on your own aspire to do anything. Own willingness is the prime requirement for completing any task in this universe. If you aspire it, then only you can put your soul into it to complete it. So, ask yourself this question – Do I really aspire to do CA? In case the answer is no, you should really think about it seriously.

The Second “D” – Dedication

As I have said it earlier, if you aspire, then only you can put your soul into it to complete it. But now, I change my statement slightly. If you aspire, then you have to put your soul into it. You have to dedicate yourself for the course. For achieving success, there is no other option for hard work. I keep on saying people not to misinterpret this word. Hard work does not mean study for 14-16 hours. Hard work means serious approach towards the study. Hard work is a relative concept. The definition of hard work differs from person to person. One may require 3-4 readings to understand whereas other may require just 1-2 readings. So, hard work has no specific definition. One should realize his requirement and then work accordingly. I just wish to say that, mere desire is not sufficient, but you also require dedication for the same.

The Third “D” – Direction

What is the use of hard work if it is not in proper sense? Suppose you need to go New Delhi and you board the flight to Chennai, will it be of any use? Hard work needs the assistance of proper direction. As you are new to the course, you should have a proper guidance from the one who are experts in the field. In case you are not going in proper direction, all your hard work will go in vain. There is one short poem about guidance –

Najar badlo, Najare badal jayenge,

Soch badlo, Sitare badal jayenge,

Kashthiya badalne ki jarurat nahi hai,

Rukh badlo, Kinare badal jayenge.

The literal meaning of this poem is somewhat like this –

Change the way you look, the Scene will change,

Change the way you think, the Luck (Stars) will change,

Why do you keep changing the Ship?

Change the direction, the Destination will change.

I am sure that you got the real meaning of direction.

To conclude, I must say that to view the true picture of success, you must wear the goggles of “3D”.

Wish you all the best.

CA. Amol Gopal Kabra

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Path of Fire!

After my recent article giving some tips to prepare for forthcoming exams, I thought of writing an article for those who were not able to qualify their exams. Those who never fail can never have the true test of success. Failure here is easy to speak but very tough to accept. All the dreams, aspires, desires are crushed and it feels to us that we are nowhere. But wait, and think that this is not just the end of our struggle, it’s just the beginning. The pressure of exam is very very small as compared to the pressure of life. So don’t get shattered by one failure in a ‘big’ exam of the course which in fact is a very ‘small’ exam of life.

I remember, when I was in CA Final, I used to rehearse these lines from the writings of the great poet Shri. Harivanshraiji Bachchan –

Tu na thakega kabhi,

Tu na thamega kabhi,

Tu na mudega kabhi,

Kar shapath, Kar Shapath, Kar Shapath,

Agnipath, Agnipath, Agnipath.

Believe me; this poem gives us a lot of meaning and inspiration in our hardest times. I have tried to translate in my best possible manner here –

You won’t ever be tired,

You won’t ever stop,

You won’t ever turn back,

Promise, Promise, Promise,

(even if)

The Path is of Fire.

Translation was very simple. But the meaning is very deep. These lines require us to make a strong determination that you will not stop until you reach your goal irrespective of the fact that the path to success is very difficult. If you want to enjoy the fruits of success, you will have to face the difficulties to reach there.

Tu na thakega kabhi (You won’t ever be tired)

Despite the failure, make sure that you won’t be tired of it. When the feeling of tiredness will creep up in your mind, then the ‘foundation’ of your determination will start to weaken. Yes, the fact is that the result was not in your favor, but if you get depressed at this point, then the urge to succeed will disappear. You have to forget it as a nightmare and start afresh for the goal.

Tu na thamega kabhi (You won’t ever stop)

When you joined the course, there was a dream in your mind. The dream was – Some day after a few years, I will be a Chartered Accountant. But now there is an obstacle in your dream. So what, it’s not over yet. You still have a chance to fulfill your dream. Don’t stop, go ahead. Once you start feeling the depression, thoughts will come to your mind to stop here. But you have to continue. You have to continue so that your dream does not remain just a Dream.

Tu na mudega kabhi (You won’t turn back)

Winners never quit. Quitters never win. If after feeling depressed, somewhere you feel to stop, the next thing which comes to your mind is – Should I quit from here? But you are forgetting something, that you are just a step away from your success. You can see the success just one step ahead, but if you quit or turn back from here, you won’t ever fulfill your dream. Even at the last step, success will not come to you. You will have to go towards it. So, never quit you dream just because you failed this time.

Kar Shapath (Promise)

Now the question is to whom are you required to make these promises – your parents, your teachers, your friends, your society, or your God? No, to none of these. You have to make these promises to yourself. You have to make a strong determination to make, follow and fulfill these promises. Yes, fulfill these promises even if the path towards success is made up of fire.

Swami Vivekanand has rightly said – Arise, Awake, and Stop not till the goal is achieved.

Forget the failure, not the Reasons

You should forget the failure but not the reasons. You have to analyse and ask youself – what went wrong? Find the reasons and make sure you don’t repeat them. Remember one thing; there is a lot of difference between ‘Reason’ and ‘Excuse’. Don’t make excuses for your failure, but find out and correct them. If you go on with this attitude then nobody will stop you from enjoying the success this time.

So go ahead and conquer the dream. All the best.

CA. Amol Gopal Kabra

Friday, July 22, 2011

100 Days to Go

The result of CA Final exams was declared recently. Heartiest Congratulations to all those who cleared their finals, but hard luck for those who didn’t manage to. But don’t worry and concentrate on the attempt to come. The PCC/IPCC result is yet to be declared, but then the result will be similar, some will qualify and some wont. In any case, those who shall be preparing for the November Exams, there are a hundred odd days to go. I am writing this article to present some tips for the exams. Needless to say but this article is for both category of students appearing for Final and IPCC, i.e. fresher and repeater.

1. Considering the time span remaining for the exam, that is around 100 days, you need to fully dedicate towards studies. It does not mean that you should study for 24 hours a day, but now your approach towards the exams must be serious.

2. The prime requirements for beginning the studies are Confidence and Self Belief. Unless and until you have these two ‘deadly weapons’, you are not going to conquer the exams.

3. The level of Confidence should be optimal. Under-Confidence as well as Over-Confidence, both are equally harmful. So, the dose of Confidence should be appropriate.

4. Until you believe in yourself, nobody else will do so. If you pray to God without believing in yourself, God will also not believe in you and may not help you.

5. Remember, study and hard work comes first. All other things, i.e. luck, wishes, God’s grace, etc. follow. So, there is no other option than hard work and study.

6. Study for 7-8 hours a day for the next 2 months and for 10-12 hours a day for the rest of the days. This much of study with good level of concentration is sufficient for anybody to clear CA exams.

7. Don’t chalk out time-wise or subject-wise time table for study. You won’t be able to follow the same. And then this will result into frustration or loss of concentration which will adversely affect your studies. Whatever may be the time and whatever may be the subject, study as per your mood. But at the same time keep in mind two constraints – time and subjects. You need to study for the above mentioned time and in a span of 8-10 days you give justice to each subject you are going to appear.

8. Don’t ever plan to leave any subject to be prepared at end. A subject left is left forever. So, irrespective whether the subject is your favorite or not, you have to study it well before exams.

9. Apart from studies, also include recreational activities in your schedule. These activities should be of such nature those give peace to your mind. Examples are listening to silent music, going for a walk, etc. These are just examples. You can do any activity that gives peace to your mind.

10. Keep your attitude positive throughout the preparation period as well as the exam period. Keep out of reach of people who give you negative inputs, even if such person is your best friend. Because, his intentions might not be to harm you, but still it may affect you adversely.

11. Don’t compare your studies with your mates. If you think you are lagging behind them, it will frustrate you. If you think you are ahead of them, it will relax you and you may lose down on your studies. If you want to compare, just compare with yourself.

12. Give proper rest to your body even during your exams. After all our body is not a machine. And even machines need rest and repairs if used excessively. Have a sleep of at least 6 hours a day. 8 hours of sleeping is highly recommended. If you go on studying on without giving rest to your body, the body may face a breakdown during exams. And if anything adverse happens, no problem, just wait for 6 more months to achieve your success in exams.

13. Don’t gulp down entire syllabus. Study with proper understanding. Remember you can’t eat an entire Chapati or Roti in one stroke. You have to eat it bite by bite. Same is with or brains. The input has to be in small parts and, to ‘digest’ the input, we need the ‘saliva’ of understanding.

14. Don’t study till the last moment of the exam and till the invigilator asks you to leave your books. Leave the books at least 1 hour before the exams. This will give rest to your brain to be used with more efficiency during exams.

15. Most important thing, don’t get nervous before the start of exams. Most of us think that how to recall such a huge syllabus. But what we have to recall is just answers to 8-10 questions that we have to face in the exam. If you are calm during the exam, the brain will work at least 10 times faster. And if you panic, it won’t help you to recall.

16. If you think that by sending a message to 15 people, you will get success in exams and by not sending the same you will face bad luck for years, then you are the biggest fool in this entire universe. These are all the tricks to lose your concentration. So better don’t believe on such rubbish things.

17. Always keep a smile on your face. This will help your nervousness to get down.

18. Even during exams, do spare some time to talk with your relatives and friends. But the topics of discussion should be strictly other than studies. This is just to reduce the nervousness about exams.

19. In case you feel down and need motivation, feel free to speak to those people who you think can inspire you. Motivation is highly needed at the times of exams.

20. All the best for your studies and exams.

CA. Amol Gopal Kabra

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Corruption - The Vicious Cycle

[Disclaimer: The views which I have expressed in this article are not supporting/against any political party or not even against any specific class of public. The views are entirely focused on the system of corruption rather than any person or group of persons. My view towards public, government and political parties is completely neutral]

The word “Corruption” is derived from the word ‘Corrupt’ (Latin corruptus) which means completely broken. We can now realize what may be the literal meaning of the word which has actually ‘completely broken’ the Administrative System of our country. Not only administrative, but it has broken almost all systems of the country.

In philosophical or theological or moral discussions, corruption is spiritual or moral impurity or deviation from an ideal. (Source: Wikipedia). Truly, corruption is deviation from an ideal – ideal procedure, ideal legal compliance, ideal working, ideal results, etc. Any reward or any benefit that is offered of given to change the situation from an ‘ideal’ situation to benefit the person doing so is called corruption. This was something about the meaning and definition.

Almost every day, we get new information on any scam, new protest against corruption, new demands for enactments against corruption. After some days, we shall be used to it a routine matter of our life. But do we really think who is responsible for this corruption – the Government Officials, Members of Parliaments / Legislative Authorities, Business Houses or Public? Usually if you ask that who is responsible for corruption, you will get answers like Government Officials or Ministers or Political Parties. But has anybody realized that not just these people but the public itself is also responsible for corruption. To be more specific, we ourselves are responsible for corruption. Both the parties who pay bribe and who accept bribe are responsible.

The Practical Scenario:

On a fine morning, you get ready for going out. You take your vehicle and as you are in a hurry either you take a no entry or you break a traffic signal. Here the law has been broken for your own advantage. (Advantage is that you have to ‘save’ your time to reach early at your destination.) What happens next is that you are caught by the traffic cop for breaking the law. He charges you Rs. 300 as fine. Here, you only offer him Rs. 100 to avoid the ‘extra financial loss’ of Rs. 200. Now who is responsible for corruption? You or the traffic cop or both? But we blame just the person who is accepting the bribe, whereas we ourselves are equally responsible.

This is just one situation of our life where we ourselves offer bribes so that we avoid the penal consequences. There are many more consequences. Right from an individual to a big business house who are responsible to initiate corruption. A businessman wants to earn ‘tax-free’ money (i.e. the black money) for which, when situation arises, he is ready to ‘share’ the benefit earned from black-money with the tax officials. Big business houses are ready to pay huge sums of money to ministers or government officials to get their proposals of new units approved without much hassles. This was the aspect where the corruption is initiated from the public side.

There also exist cases of corruption, where the public has to pay bribe for reasons out of their control. Many government officials demand for bribe despite of all the required legal compliance is valid. This happens in various government departments. It happens even in case of police departments in cases where the robbers are arrested and the victims claim their belongings back from the department. There is a very practical case know to all of us. Even the postman asks for some money when he delivers you the passport. If you don’t pay him, he’ll demand you various documents and in case of non-availability of some of any of them, he’ll threaten you for returning the passport. And so as to avoid further consequences, you get ready to pay him.

What is the vicious cycle of corruption?

As discussed everybody does corruption for some or the other reason – either to benefit himself or for situations out of his own control. Now, I’ll show you the vicious cycle of corruption.

  • A common person / businessman pays bribe to government officials for his own benefit.
  • The government official, who was once a candidate for the post, has paid a huge amount as bribe to the head of that department for his appointment for the post. So he is trying to recover the amount from public / businessmen.
  • The respective head of the department has already paid a huge amount (more than his junior has paid to him) to some state or central minister. So he is trying to recover it from his juniors.
  • The respective minister has incurred huge expenditure in contesting elections and winning them. The so called huge expenditure also includes amounts and ‘benefits’ paid to common people to cast vote in their favor.

This is the vicious circle of corruption. We can put the blame just on the ministers or the government. We should realize that we all are equally responsible for it.

What is the Solution?

As I have already discussed that there are two situations for corruption – one that we ourselves create to avoid law and consequences and the other that we are forced to. We on our individual basis can totally avoid the former situation that we ourselves have created. This can be done by proper legal compliance on our part irrespective of the financial outflow is required on legal part. However, the later one cannot be controlled by any single individual. For the later one, there is a requirement of mass response. But one thing is for sure, unless we prevent the former situation, we won’t be ‘eligible’ for the later one. So to curb the corruption, the action should begin at your own rather than just blaming the system.

CA. Amol Gopal Kabra

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Happy Man's Shirt

Many amongst us know the story of the King who was in search of happiness. Still, I’ll discuss it here so that you recall it. Long time ago there was a king who was very anxious and so he was not happy for n number of reasons. He had lot of wealth, money, estate, property, etc. but still was not happy. So, he decided to consult to his Guru. His Guru suggested him that he’ll be happy if he gets and wears a shirt of the person who was the most happy in his kingdom. So he began the search of such person. Many days passed but the king didn’t find any such person. Every person he met was unhappy for one or the other reason. But finally after lot of search, he found a person who was very happy. The person was a poor farmer who used to earn his daily livelihood on his small piece of land but was satisfied and content with what he had. The king was happy to find him and immediately asked him for his shirt. But soon the king noticed that the farmer was not wearing a shirt. Here he realized the real meaning of his Guru.

Similar to the king, everybody in our own life is in search of happiness through external sources, but the fact is that the happiness lies within. A person with millions of wealth may not be happy but a person who barely earns his livelihood may be happier. The reason is the later one is content with what he has. Happiness is not from the physical amenities we enjoy, but it is the sense of satisfaction that our soul feels. Happiness is not what we own and what others see in us. It is what we feel within.

Today, the definition of happiness is totally changed. People just want to seem happy to the world but they actually are not happy within. Everyone is conscious about what people think about them but nobody is conscious about what he himself thinks. People run after money, wealth, prosperity, etc. to gain happiness but they forget the things which make them happy. They just want to ‘show-off’ their happiness rather than feeling it. In an urge to ‘make others feel’ them happy, they forget about the things what actually ‘make’ them happy.

The one who is most happy in this world is a small child who is unaware of all the external sources of the so called ‘happiness’. He finds his happiness in his own activities and own style. He is not bothered about any finance, wealth, amenities, money, property, etc., but is happy with his basic needs only. Once he starts growing and becomes aware of the external environment, his ‘needs’ of happiness changes and as the ‘tradition’ goes on, he tries to find happiness in external things forgetting what his own mind and soul needs.

Mahatma Gandhi has rightly said – “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” So, it’s our own responsibility to ask our soul rather our body the needs of happiness. We should think, say and accordingly act for our happiness. Do what you like and be happy.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Stress - How to handle it?

One thing that every human has got by birth is – Stress or what we call it in our customary language as Tension. There is no person in this universe that is free of tension. It is an inherent part of our lives.

A school going kid has the tension for studies, a pass out graduate has the tension for placement or career, a businessman has the tension for his revenues, a housewife has her household tensions, etc. However, every other person assumes himself to be the most stressful in this entire world. But the fact is that, if we were asked to exchange our problems with other people, we will exchange them back in less than a span of 24 hours. So, the problem is not about the stress or the tension, but about how to tackle it.

A simple quote says that “If problem can be solved, there is no need to worry; if the problem cannot be solved, there is no use of worrying.” The stress we have grows bigger and bigger only if we keep on worrying about it. Rather than worrying about the stress, what we need to do is work on it. The best way to get rid of a problem is to solve it and not just think about and keep worrying.

In case of stress, one should ask this question to himself. Whether I can control the situations that result into stress? If the answer is yes, the just go and control the situations in the best possible manner you can. If the answer is no, just keep your head cool and wait patiently to get the situations better in your favor. Even a marble needs to go through various strokes of the sculptor to be finally worshiped as God. So, in case of stress, patience always pays you.

Even the perception of the problem also results in the stress. We consider the problem to be very complex but actually it’s a small one. The more we think about it, the more complex it seems to us. The decision is your as to how much to entertain a problem that results in a stress for you. Entire water in the ocean could never sink a ship, unless it gets inside. Similarly, all the pressures of life can never hurt you, unless you let them in. So, if you don’t want to allow the pressure to be built in, there is no way it will hurt you.

I am very much inspired by M. S. Dhoni, the Captain of Indian Cricket Team, by one of his incidences in his career which all of us know very well. It’s about the great Final match of Cricket World Cup 2011. The toss was initially won by India, but owing to confusion, the match referee asked for repeat toss. Without any hesitation, our Captain gave his consent. This was such a pressure situation, where any other person would have lost his temper and would have acted aggressively. But keeping his cool, he accepted the situation and rather that putting energy in aggression he utilized it for his performance which was, I think, his best performance ever as it led India to a World Cup Victory.

To conclude, “Any problem in this world is not BIG, unless you make it so.”

Suicide – Is it the way out?

On the fine afternoon of June 14 th , 2020 a news popped up in my WhatsApp that young actor Sushant Singh Rajpoot ended his life by hangi...