Years and years of rigorous training coupled with sleepless nights and cups of coffee, this summarizes my journey through Med- school and I am pretty convinced that a lot of you reading this right now could somewhat relate no matter what field you are in. We all have burnt the midnight oil to finally achieve the degree or charter that we have been in pursuit of for years. 

Now that you have finally passed out, then what? What is the next course of action? Is that really the end of our journey? Well, the rat race has never left your side and what about the sight that has been your dreams. I knew that learning dentistry was part one, I also had to excel in creating awareness on oral health, it importance, but where do I begin and how??

 I believe life is synonymous with a video game. In a video game, you are posed with a milestone, and every time you achieve that specific milestone, you level up and are posed with a much more difficult and deadlier challenge. 

  But the catch is that you are even rewarded with better equipment- an armour, a knife, even another life- don’t you think even our lives are a teeny bit similar? Every experience prepares you for the next bigger challenge, thus, making it dynamic. Life can never be static just like a video game with new challenges waiting at your front door.

Gaur Gopal Das Ji has iterated upon certain nuances of the human mindset which I believe should be inculcated by every individual.

  1. There will always be some people who would want to bring you down by the way of their comments or actions. Turn a deaf ear to negative comments. However, always welcome constructive criticism and feedback from those who are your well-wishers and would always want to seek the best for you. The most important thing is to believe in yourself and capitalize on your strengths while working on your weaknesses.
  1. Start from where you are :Prepare a list of the resources you have and understand how you can optimally use the resources available at your disposal to accomplish your objective. Don’t be disheartened if you start on a small scale. Take that first step with the application of the available resources and keep finessing your abilities along the way. Steve Jobs started out of a garage and went on to create one of the most successful companies of all time.
  1. Progressive overloading-   Progressive overloading in success should be your primary target wherein after you achieve one milestone, you set yourself up for a more difficult challenge. 

As a timeline,

Comfort Zone- This is where you are standing currently.

Stretch Zone- This is the area of difficulty that you are willing to accept and do not feel scared to take up. 

Panic Zone- The zone that you are scared to enter because the fear of failure looms over your head since you aren’t familiar with the situation. 

The Panic Zone is what you should be aiming for. Face your fears because only then will you unlock your true potential.

  1. Progress is never linear but rather a graph with highs and lows. The most important thing to remember is that 2 steps forward and 1 step back is still 1 step forward. Rejoice in the small achievements and never undermine yourself. Learn from every experience and keep your chin up high. Patience coupled with a determination to succeed will help you venture through any troubles or difficulties. 
  1. Your company and peers do influence your perspective towards life. Hence, the people you choose to be a part of your life must be on the same wavelength as you. Spend your time with people who inspire you, who value you, and most importantly, who will help you grow as a person. 
  1. Have a strong purpose . Carrying out an activity just because it will result in greater prestige wouldn’t yield any fruitful results for you. This is because you view the job simply as an incentive but do not focus on the bigger picture in terms of learnings and development; primarily, what purpose has this task helped you achieve in your life. You will have no answer to this and that’s how you realize what to prioritize and what to let go of.
  1. Good mentors will help you shape your thought process and also aid in channelizing your efforts in the right direction. Your mentors can help in adding great value to you and can help you prepare for various unpredictable circumstances. Their experience could prove to be invaluable to you and hence, select the right mentor, someone on whom you could rely for advice and guidance.
  1. Aim for legacy : Fact is we all are on this planet for a short time, we are lucky to get the opportunity to experience this life, and just like the polestar that constantly makes its presence known , we can leave behind our legacy . But we must remember to not make stupid mistakes and be humble:)

Finally, try and avoid any hasty decisions that could result in negative consequences for you. Be prudent, exercise care, and most importantly, always remember your roots.


  • Dr Karishma Vijan

    Dental Surgeon, Author, Philanthropist

    Dr Karishma Vijan is a Mumbai-based practising dentist focusing on cosmetic and restorative dentistry. She has written articles for several national and international scientific journals. After losing a close family acquaintance to cancer, and witnessed the prolonged suffering that came with the disease, Dr Vijan was devastated. She did not want to wait till she was 'old enough' to make a difference to the world through her professional  skills or her intention of philanthropy. She decided to turn her loss into purpose, and thus was born The Unicorn Xpress Foundation & Trust (Tux). The nonprofit's motto is ‘Empowerment through Healthcare’ and it works with underprivileged women across several cities in India. Dr Vijan has received the WEF 2019 prestigious ‘Iconic Women Creating a Better World for All’ award, and has been invited as speaker at Plenary Sessions at the annual international gathering gala edition for the Women Economic Forum, 2019. She has also been named one of the 'Most Inspiring Women in Healthcare across India' as a part of the Bumble Bizz campaign for women. Dr Vijan was also featured in the list of ‘100 Most Impactful Global Healthcare Leaders' at the World Health & Wellness Congress 2019 by ET Now.