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The making of a Productive Person

Each country has its own super hero, who is credited with creating or saving the nation at one point in history. Well, we do have King Mohamed Thakurufaanu who saved the Maldives from Portuguese rule, some 450 years back.

Well, my story is not really about the King, but rather about his deckhand, Dhandahelu.

When Dhandahelu was recruited, he was just a mere boy, who had no parents and was in a very poor health. When the younger brother of the king asked him, why the poorly little boy was selected to be the deckhand, the king being a true leader, replied, “my dear brother Hassan, that kid will become someone, when we make him someone”.

After being educated and trained on the skills needed, he did not just become someone, he became a legend. Dhandahelu’s name is written right next to the great king in all our history books, for being the brave warrior, who fought beside the king to save the Maldives, and for his incredible transformation.

We humans are created as the perfect machines. We become who we are mostly based on the people around us, and our education. From the very first steps, we tend to start limiting the creative and physical ability of this perfect machine. How many incidents do you recall when a child is being stopped from doing certain activities, because we grown-ups think it could hurt the child? How many times do we tell a child not to ask too many questions because we are tired of answering them, or just because we think the child is just a child and may not understand even if we answer?

Every time we say no, we start to define the boundary and limitation for the child, who at one point in the future will replace us as a grown up. This goes true for most of us who tend to find comfort in being normal average human beings. Then there are those of us, who get bored of the normal life, and look for challenges and walk the extra mile.

Until Roger Bannister broke the 4-minute mile speed barrier in 1954, it was thought that the human body was simply not capable of running a mile under 4 minutes. Having said this, we need to understand that the mindset of the society needs to change to allow development of a very productive next generation to replace us one day.

Recent child behavior studies note that children these days are being exposed to too much unnecessary content. It is suggested that we help them declutter their mind by minimizing their time in front of screens, as well as reducing the number of toys that they get to have. Instead, make them engage in real healthy conversations, read books, play sports, problem solving and being creative.

We need to allow the kids to make mistakes in real life, so that they learn from it and become more resilient and productive when they grow up. After all, it was one of the best leadership lessons that the great King Mohamed Thakurufaanu thought us.

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