‘Leave behind shoes, no man can ever fill them’

Pranita Roy
Sunday, 30 June 2019

I was raised in Kolkata. My family was wealthy enough. I was a very good student and wanted to become a CA. And then my aim was to become either finance minister of India or governor of the Reserve Bank of India  — Narendra Godani (Founder, Lifeschool) 
 

Iwas a bullied child in school and never had friends. A group of classmates had surprisingly invited me to have tiffin with them during the lunch break. Little after that, I realised they had actually called me to make fun of me and get entertained,” said Jay Fufagar (20), a Chartered Accountant (CA) aspirant.

Fufagar further narrated, “Somehow that day, this incident didn’t shock me. Neither did I feel belittled by them. I just finished my tiffin quietly and got back to class. This surprised them. Then after I never reacted to their teasing and bullies and they stopped realising that it no longer matters or affects me.”

How did Fufagar gain such confidence? “I had attended a session at Lifeschool the previous day of the above said incident. There, I realised we always downgrade ourselves for what we are. A simple incident that takes place in our life leaves us pondering about how unworthy we are. I was an introvert, so felt, that made things against me. The day I let go of my negativity was an epiphany. Today, I am a content writer, storyteller, manager, conduct sessions for students in schools everything,” he said with a smile.

Chapter one - An Inspiration 
Lifeschool- an inspirational training centre which completes 20 years of existence this year, was founded by Narendra Goidani who had once aspired to become a CA, but faith turned him to be a philanthropist. Goidani has touched upon the lives of over 2.45 lakh students and 30,000 teachers in over 200 schools across India and over 100 schools in Pune. 

“Several episodes in my life has made me what I am today. I was raised in Kolkata. My family was wealthy enough. I was a very good student and wanted to become a CA. And then my aim was to become either finance minister of India or governor of the Reserve Bank of India,” said Goidani who was 18 years old then. He got admission in St. Xaviers’ College in Kolkata after Std XII.

“When I returned home to tell parents I got admission in this college, I found out our family business had sunk and an employee who was supposed to take the insurance amount eloped with the money. We were bankrupt. I couldn’t go to college after that,” said Goidani who educational qualification is dated to Std XII pass.

Inspired by the phrase, ‘Leave behind shoes, no man can fill’ by Harley Davidson, Goidani was determined to aim high and make the phrase reality for him. Today, Goidani is a board member of two educational institutions, Vishwakarma Institute of Technology (VIT) and International Institute of Information Technology (I2IT), Hinjawadi.

Second chapter - Success with greater achievements
His second chapter opened in Chennai where he built up a saree business and was successful. However, soon, Goidani realised that his calling was different. He decided to give up his business and start a fresh and explore life. It was then he came to Pune.

Third chapter - No blame, no complaints, no excuse!
Goidani started his training centre in 1999 in the city. The centre aims at inspiring and empowering people who have belittled themselves at some point in time in their life and transform their perspective towards life.

Let’s explore batch which started in 1999, will have its 125th batch this July 12 when Lifeschool turns 20. This batch allowed people to explore themselves amidst various challenges through different aspects in life like relationship, professional and personal. Further, in 2001 the training centre expanded itself to cater to thousands of teachers and slowly students, which prompted to the introduction of ‘Keep Moving Movement’. 

Goidani starts his sessions with telling stories of personalities who are lesser known in the society but have impactful stories that could change the perception of society 360 degrees round. 

“Our module of the session goes like me, myself with others and myself in the future. How do we take responsibility for our life? One of our sessions called ‘no blame, no complaints, no excuse’ talked about how we generally make it a point to cry over various things happening in our life. We try to promulgate a thought which enables them to think otherwise without blaming, complaining and giving excuses,” explained Goidani.

Speaking about sessions that work on personality development, Goidani said, “We throw questions to students like if the Prime Minister of India wants to meet you, then what will he/she search in you? What if your role model is interviewing you and asks what are the three things you did in life that you are proud of? We try to play with their psychology by throwing different situations at them. We don’t directly tell them what is right and wrong but make them think instead. And so far, we have received a positive response from students.”

The school believes there are two reasons for failure, inadequate preparations and negative attitude. 

It is important to overcome these factors with good leadership, self-discipline, persistence, critical thinking and problem solving abilities etc.

Life School is not made from theory, but built on experiences. It is not about instructions and idealistic ideas. It is all about practical, pragmatic and ‘breakout of your comfort zone’ actions. It is all about discovery, actualising and maximising our potentials. It is about a culture of inspired living. 

This culture is what they call - Life School, reads on their wall.

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