New challenges of life
LIFE has always been a challenge. Ever since ALLAH created human being and sent him and her to this earth, challenges have always been there, though in different perspectives, dimensions and nature.
The challenges of pre-historic people may have been much different from the humans who lived during centuries after them.
The challenges faced by our forefathers one or two centuries ago must have been definitely different from what challenges we are facing now in modern times.
People often ask the question whether we are happier in life than our older generation. This debate is never-ending and there are always different opinions about it.
Some find present day life very difficult and challenging while some are happy and contended with it.
Different segments of society face challenges of different nature and magnitude but there are no exceptions.
Every one faces challenges at different phases of life. For some, challenges are temporary but some face those in perpetuity.
The lucky ones have fewer challenges and that too temporary but some unfortunate ones have plenty of those and they live with those.
Every one of us will inevitably have difficulties and challenges as we go through life: we will fail tests, not make a team, have a sick friend or family member, will get sick ourselves.
As we face life challenges we may find ourselves feeling sad, angry, feel tense or anxious and comforted by others and feeling cared for and supported and maybe even proud of how we have faced or bounced back from the challenge.
To deal with life’s challenges and misfortunes one needs resilience, determination, strong will-power along with concerted actions.
Is it something one is born with or can it be learned and enhanced? A lot of our resilience is learned from those around us and our experiences and the attitudes and beliefs develop, as we grow up.
Falls are inevitable but are not necessarily a big deal. It is important to keep problems in perspective.
If you are confronted with a problem you don’t ignore it – checks things out carefully but there is no need to get excited until and unless the problem is large and un-manageable.
If you’ve assessed a problem and it does not seem terribly serious – go on with life. Keep moving forward.
There is no reason you can’t continue playing. Keeping a calm, positive attitude helps everyone, involved. Having others around who care about you helps you feel safe and secure.
The world is basically a fine place but you still might fall sometimes if planning is flawed and actions are mis-directed.
Of course throughout one’s life, problems are sometimes going to be more severe, disruptive and long-lasting than falling in the playground, coping with grief and loss of resources.
But you’d be surprised how powerfully these basic attitudes can carry over into your life as an adult.
Presently we are facing a number of problems which perhaps our forefathers never came across.
Climate change, cyber security, identity theft, fake media news, on-line shopping frauds and VDOs, regional and global insecurity due to big power rivalry, Climate change is another dilemma with global dimensions.
Every country in the world is facing these harsh climate changes. Unfortunately, Pakistan is on the list of top ten countries where climate changes are going to be rapid and deadly.
The latest example is the untimely Monsoon rains and unprecedented flooding in the entire country.
Research in this area is urgently needed to fore-warn countries where the impact is going to be colossal.
Cyber security and data protection coupled with law enforcement is an other grey area where much needs to be done due to the escalating dramatic increase in the related crimes.
Shopping online and banking online has resulted in manifold increase in cyber crimes and data theft.
There is an urgent need to plug loop-holes for the sake of millions of shoppers and bank clients who are falling victim to this rampant crime.
Global politics is in a state of flux. From Africa to Canada and from Australia to America, politics and economic environments are changing every day.
One has to be in touch with all these fast changing developments, daily, to be up-to-date.
We need to stay in touch with print and electronic media to keep ourselves constantly engaged with changing global political and economic scenarios, governance issues in various countries and deliberating on ways and means to remove bottlenecks and suggest solutions.
Big power rivalry has made Indo-Pacific area as the hot bed of power politics, particularly South China Sea where both China and US (along with its allies) are flexing their muscles and testing their nerves, thereby creating an environment of uncertainty — both political and economical.
The world has changed after 11 September 2001 and security — both internal and external — has assumed a role of major challenge for every country.
Geopolitical security and stability have attained important and central place in every country’s foreign policy, since 9/11, demise of Soviet Union and rise of China as a major economic power, particularly in Asia and Africa.
Its engagement with Russia and CIS states and role in SCO, is worrying Uncle Sam. There are wide-spread predictions that China will overtake USA as the major economic power in twenty years due to its spectacular economic growth rate in double digits for more than twenty years, with highest foreign exchange reserves while other countries were reeling with 5/6% and mounting their debts.
Life is, therefore, full of challenges, some surmountable some not. Solutions may not be easy but would require resilience, wisdom, patience and determination and efforts at both individual and collective levels to make it easier and tension-free.
Who knows, in the times to come, the future generations might face challenges and problems of different nature and with much more intensity and frequency.
—The writer is Former Civil Servant & Consultant: ILO and IOM. The writer also contributes to Migration Policy Institute, Washington and Migration Source, Europe, presently living in US.