“Get a government job, you can have a happy retirement.”
This statement is common to all the middle-class families in India. The notion of stability is seen as acquiring a government job. Being a government employee, whether you like it or not, is the best thing you have achieved in life, according to the society.
This stability notion comes from the middle-class families alone who are neither rich nor poor but only have an image to uphold in the society or their prestige. Right from the start kids are told that government jobs can get your life sorted in every way, ranging from career to marriage and retirement. Indian middle-class thus have an obsession with government jobs.
Why this obsession?
All parents wish for a better future for their child. They do not want their children to go through the struggles they have experienced in life. This is the main reason for them wanting their children to have a government job so that their life would be ‘secured.’
This achievement will bring good marriage proposals also, which according to Indian society is a big advantage. Getting a government job increases your ‘value.’ It doesn’t matter if you are happy with the government job or not, or even if you go and do no work. But the salary, the added incentives, the pension and the stability all are the factors highlighting government job. The mindset has been set that if you acquire a government job, there is nothing else you need to worry about.
Another factor is the timings being tallied. Government jobs have specific working hours, while a new start-up or a private job will require you to do more or stay back. The quality time spent with family tends to be less for a private sector employee.
Thinking out of the Box
It is difficult for a middle-class family member to confess to their own family that they wish to do something new. By something new it can be becoming a writer, having a start-up, or becoming an actor. The first reaction the typical middle-class Indian family after confessing will be asking if you are cray.
They give you examples of people who have thought out of the box and have become successful, but when you try something out of box things become difficult. Ranging from what the society will think about you to if the new ideas chance of working out, there will be a laid of set of questions. Moreover, taking the risk which is very new will add to the growing tensions of the family.
Slow death of passions and dreams
Passions get no enough recognition in bringing the ‘so-called’ stability in life. Many passions and dreams somehow die a slow death when questioned too much and not finding support. A person who dreams to be something in childhood is not what you become in the future. This is clearly a lack of support for their dreams. Taking a risk and enjoying an adventure is still not entertained in careers.
By stating this, it does not mean that government jobs are bad. There is great respect for people working for the government. Moreover, having a stable and secure job and life may be perfect. But people who wish to think out of the box are discouraged by asking why they need to do so when they could just study and get a stable government job.
At the end of the day, it only matters if you are happy with what you do in your life. There is absolutely no harm in thinking differently and going for something adventurous. You get discouraged at every point in life, but it should never be as disturbing and annoying as doing something that you don’t like and let your dreams fly away.