Hard work is one of the most important aspects of personal growth.
And what better day to talk about working hard than “Labor Day” which is today—the 1st of May?
Contemplate over these lines, explaining the importance of labour:
उद्यमेन हि सिध्यन्ति कार्याणि न मनोरथैः ।
न हि सुप्तस्य सिंहस्य प्रविशन्ति मुखे मृगाः ।।
Udyamein hi siddhyanti karyani na manoratheh ।
Nahi suptasya sinhasya pravishanti mukhe mrigha ।।
“Effort accomplishes work; it does not get accomplished merely by wishing. The animals don’t enter a sleeping lion’s mouth.”
When you try making a career in your chosen field; planning, predicting possible outcomes, and having a positive attitude—it all matters. But what matters more is the willpower to work hard.
The process of working towards your goals, moving past setbacks, and then finally tasting the fruits of your sweat is as relevant today as it has been in the past.
There’s no substitute for hard work. No matter how many people sing praises for “shortcuts”; hard work is still the core of success, and will always be.
An Inspiring Real Life Story About Hard Work
Just the other day, a friend narrated me an inspiring story.
It was about a man who had lost everything but didn’t give up.
He worked tirelessly, bounced back and made his life meaningful again. I am sharing the story with you. (I have changed the names of people and places to protect identities).
This story is about a newspaper distribution agency owner in a small town in Bihar.
We shall call him Harender.
He, along with his team, used to work quite hard to earn a decent living.
Everything was going well, when one day, one of his friends gave him an offer he couldn’t refuse. That friend explained to Harender that he runs a handicraft and clothing company.
He further elaborated, “I have lost interest in running this business due to my deteriorating health. The company is pretty much profitable, and I’d suggest you buy the company. Just come to the office regularly and look after the already established business. That’s all you need to do. You’d be the owner of the company. What more could you ask for?”
Harender believed him. He decided to sell his ancestral property (located in his native village) to pay for the deal. One of his other friends advised him, “Harender, you neither have the kind of education nor the experience needed to run a company. I think you shouldn’t waste your money.”
Things Went Wrong
But Harender was determined to make it big as an entrepreneur. He listened to nobody. He sold the land, and also borrowed some money from people in his village.
The deal got finalised. Soon, Harender was running the company. Things went smoothly initially, but since he had no previous experience, the company started leaning towards losses, and within no time, got shut down.
The creditors started pressurising Harender to return their money. He had none left.
Seeing no other option, he disappeared. Nobody knew where he went.
Harender had four daughters. After his disappearance, his family’s financial condition worsened with each passing day.
Eight Years Passed
His family members left no stone unturned to search for him. But all went in vain. His wife was depressed and was on the verge of going insane. Eight years is an extended period, and since there was no news of him, the family members had started believing that Harender was dead. They were planning to do the posthumous rituals.
Harender had left for Jalandhar, Punjab. He had changed his name from Harender to Vijay and had started working as an assistant to a car dry cleaner. His boss was quite happy with his work but also was surprised by his weird behaviour.
The employer used to think, ‘This man is strange. It’s been eight years since he’s been working for me, and he never talks about his home or his family. Something is fishy. I need to find out the truth.’
The Boss Noticed Something
There was an old, worn-out bag in Harender’s room. Harender never opened the bag in front of his boss, though they were sharing the same place. The boss planned to open Harender’s bag in his absence, hoping to find something that can tell about his family.
One day when Harender was not around, the boss opened the bag. He found some old clothes and a visiting card along with his real name “Harender” on it. There was a phone number on the back of the visiting card. The boss dialled the number. That number belonged to Harender’s nephew. The boss narrated the story.
Harender’s nephew gave him the phone number of Harender’s younger brother Shripal, who used to live in Bhatinda, Punjab. When he came to know the truth behind his brother’s disappearance eight years ago, he cautioned the boss not to let Harender know about it. Shripal immediately booked a taxi and along with four other men, left to fetch him.
He reached Jalandhar, and when he saw his brother Harender who was almost a skeleton—sunken eyes, visible cheekbones, fragile body—no desire to live. Shripal lost consciousness. The people accompanying him hold him. After much effort, Shripal regained consciousness.
The Turning Point
He took Harender to their hometown in Bihar. People who had lent him money eight years back, said, “Don’t worry about the money. We won’t ask for it. You take care of your family and yourself.” By then, 2 of his daughters had gotten married. His family members, along with my friend, had somehow managed to arrange for the money for the marriage functions.
Harender tried to come back to a normal life. His brother Shripal, who had rescued him from that miserable life, gave him some money and advised him to recover. Harender followed his advice, and within six months, his body and mind both regained normalcy. He was back on track.
Then he called up his nephew (my friend), who used to live in Gurugram, Haryana, and requested him for 15K and a mobile phone. He said, “I want to start my own car dry cleaning business, and for that, I need money.” His nephew did not have any faith in him because of what he’d done eight years ago, but still, arranged for 14K and a mobile phone.
The next evening, Harender came back with car dry cleaning equipment. He started roaming around in the streets—telling people that he does car dry cleaning, and anybody needing such service could contact him. After two days, he again asked for 250 rupees to get some visiting cards printed. My friend arranged for that too.
Harender Got a New Life
Harender had new energy. He started passing on his visiting cards to people on traffic signals. Gradually people began hiring him to get their cars dry cleaned. And soon, his financial condition improved. Within a few months, he had successfully established his business. He also began paying back the money he had borrowed in instalments.
His perseverance paid off. Today he runs a profitable business. He lives in a lovely home in Gurugram, Haryana.
No matter where you are in life right now, you have the potential to achieve your dreams if you can embrace the fact that hard work is the core of success.
Be more than willing to put in hard work to make your career.
It’s something only you can do.