I went through a phase of introspection after seeing the film slumdog millionaire for the first time. It was 2008 when I was working as a software engineer, staying in Chennai. As the story flows, the kid tries out many things in his life to survive; when nothing was there with him he was a beggar, with a little maturity he started selling goods, then selling toys in trains, worked as a tourist guide, worked as a photographer, providing chai(Tea) to the corporate,learned on his own how BPO people work. I was so envious of the main protagonist named Jamal Malik. There was always this pro factor for him of being a slum kid than being a kid born with a silver spoon. He did not have to think about the societal status and parental interference before taking any crucial decision of life. If you don’t have anything, there is no fear of losing anything!!
I had always a question in my mind that if Jamal Malik would have been from a regular middle class family or upper middle class family; would his parents have allowed him to do such things? With the growing trend in India towards stereotypical higher education of medical and engineering, before the kid is even born his/her parents have already decided that the kid would be a doctor or engineer in the future. It is necessary to break that trend and inspire the kids to chase their dreams.
All those thoughts kept quiescent till I heard about One Week Job Project where Sean Aiken from Canada did 52 jobs in 52 weeks to inspire the people to “Discovery Their Passion”. Thus connecting all the dots, One Week Job India mission started in mid May 2013 which ended in December 2013, with a variety of jobs ranging from mountain cleaner to TRP Analyst to Tattoo maker to Rafting Trainee to Cremation Assistant to Tea Factory Worker to Bullet Mechanic to Sundal Seller. I tried to cut down on the false sense of egoism I had earned though all the corporate experiences and higher degrees. That’s the main reason why I went ahead with all the different kinds of jobs that came across in the journey of 28 states 28 jobs 28 weeks.
28 Jobs I tried in all the 28 States of India
Yes, the journey was difficult, from leaving a comfort zone to chasing after my dreams, not knowing what the future would bring; but the kind of contentment and the richness of experience, not to mention the immense personal growth that I attained makes every bit of the efforts worthy.If 1000 kids get inspired from this mission and chase their dream to become what they really want to be, I would consider all my efforts as a massive success!!