>Question of the Month: January

>New year, new ideas. And this one’s for the blog. Considering that I ask so many questions, I’ve started a new monthly post here called, what else but ‘Question of the Month.’ It’s simple enough: I ask a question and you find me the answer. Or at least tell me what you think about it. Or maybe you can ask me a question in return. Or maybe you can tell me it’s not a question at all – whatever – but let’s just get talking.

And the question for this month is:
Is ambition an aberration in a woman’s nature?

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30 responses »

  1. >Nope, I do not think so. To aim is a human trait whether it be woman or man. In the early ages, women had different ambitions based on the society i.e. being at home and taking care of the family and now in the modern age, I think women have more ambitions i.e. to be a good mother and also be a good career woman. It is difficult to manage a personal and professional life. But I guess ambition is a good thing. Otherwise life would be very meaningless.

  2. >Interesting question – definitely not I think. I ctually think it's kinda refreshing to see a woman with a focused ambition – most if they have it tend not to display it openly.I think ambition exudes confidence, but there can be a fine line there. Too much confidence can be taken as arrogance. I say this regardless of gender, because a jerk is a jerk no matter what sex they are πŸ˜›

  3. >the one who thinks like this is an aberrant himself.to be ambitious is every human being's right. to have an ambition and to work towards gives meaning to life. and we the women have the determination and zeal to do ita woman can be ambitious for herself or for her children .

  4. >So in turn of finding you answers are we going to be termed as Ms.Googles ? hehehe..jokes apart answering your Qn:Aberration? Nope ! And specially in woman's nature…I don't think so! Any aim is considered as ambition..be it wanting to be a good house wife ro a rocking professional or just plain and simple be a good human being…so it's not aberration for sure ! It's in fact pretty normal to have a clear aim in life πŸ™‚

  5. >@Doli: Do you think a woman's ambition could be to take care of her family? Isn't it something that is more about a sense of duty… I'm not sure – just wondering aloud…@Silvara: That women do not feel free to display their ambitious side says something about the social acceptability of this trait in them, don't you think?@anjugandhi: But being ambitious for yourself is not quite the same thing as being ambitious for your children – the former may not be welcome, the latter praise-worthy.@Nu: Yes, of course – my Googlies! πŸ˜€ I think I should have clarified that I meant professional ambitions. But even in the broader sense, I seriously doubt anybody could have an ambition of becoming a good human being, wife, etc. You could want to be all of that, but be ambitious about it? I don't know.

  6. >Certainly not. Even the seventeenth century women coming from economically average families and mediocre backgrounds were ambitious. Ambitious enough to dream of a better life for their children, daring enough to venture risks to feed mouths and positive enough to keep trying.What I am saying is that, one cannot categorize nature/behavior into two main slots, Male and Female. There are stereotypes such as Men are less emotional and Women are more patient etc, but behaviours cannot be generalized. It is more of what we are trained to see in Men and Women that we begin to believe. But thoughts, feelings have nothing to do with the gender of a person. It is how we are molded is what we are.

  7. >very interesting!To give an example, I was working for sort of an ad agency. Life was hectic. I loved my job but had absolutely no time for myself and my family. All I thought was about my job and the deadlines I had to meet. This definitely wasn't acceptable on the personal front. A friend said loving your job, working hard; being ambitious is absolutely fine as long as you are single. She said over a period of time what matters is how well you bring up a family. A woman always has to contribute more. I now work for a publication, a nice 10-6 job where I have company of the bestest colleagues I could have ever asked for. And I love my job here too. I think one should adapt and aim for happiness… not just our own but that of other around us too. Being ambitious about achieving great heights professionally is comparatively easy than having a mind that is at peace. I now crave for the latter more. I would however add that this approach works for some and doesn't work for many others.

  8. >yeah thats true that being ambitious for self is mostly not welcomebut then when has the views of others have stopped women of substance and who are ready to stand against to every one

  9. >@G: Those are facts. Ambition can exist irrespective of gender. But is it accepted irrespective of gender as well?@How do we know: Yes, but what of social acceptability?@Mamta: You know, compromising and adjusting is second nature to women. So much so that we don't even think very often whether this is really what makes us happy or this is what should stereotypically make us happy. I've also left career aspirations to make peace with my surroundings. And if I were to pursue them full throttle chances are I would have to fight a lot of resistance. Which is why I asked the question in the first place.@anjugandhi: Friction is never easy. So isn't a woman's life I guess! πŸ™‚

  10. >I think it is possible to have "ambitions" both in your personal sphere and professional sphere. while it is consdered "commendable" and you, as a woman, considered "considerate", "thoughtful" about your parents etc. if you priortise your personal ambitions (marriage, husband, kids) etc. professional ambitions in a woman, especially, if they indicate a strong desire in woman to excel, ignoring their so called personal duties; are not considered to be appropriate and are in fact looked upon as aberrations. and this is not only about the patriarchal mindset or older generations. i know guys my age who tell me the same thing- that the GIRL is the one who should be willing to give up her desire to move to another city etc. if she wants to marry the person she is in a relationship with. a lot of them even have said that they would prefer their wives/ to be wives to be in government jobs etc. where she can have the "ease" of work. deadlines are ok, but in low pressure/ stress jobs they cannot be there always, is the logic. personally speaking, i do find it chauvanistic that guys my age too should think like this- i am equally as educated, and definitely more knowledgeable,better read, more critical and appreciative of asethetics and the so called tertiary things in life than a lot of them. i work equally hard in office and at the same time, since i am single woman living alone, i handle all the housework also by myself; at times even cooking dinners for myself and 3 other guys. and its difficult, but we manage to do it without cribbing or even a word of protest. and they seem to like how homely we are.but at the same time, if you say that you want to move cities because you have a better job opportunity etc. they will tell you to consider whether this would entail a snag in your relationship and the entire thing about how a compromise has to struck goes on and on and on. My problem is not the compromise. it simply is that why it is never the guy who says, ok you are moving, i will also move. not like give an ultimatum about you decide its the job or me.in that sense, i always think, professional ambitions in women will always be considered an aberration.

  11. >Definitely not! But society doesn't make it easy for a woman to follow her professional ambitions easily once a kid comes into the picture. Compromise is second nature to a woman.Rarely do you find instances where a woman has the more high powered job than the husband and where she has the full support of the family to pursue her ambitions.But then, I guess sometimes priorities also change. If my priority were not a happy and peaceful family life, then I would not compromise…? did I make sense there?

  12. >We can deny all we want, but it is..The reason I am saying this is, its so difficult as an "Indian" woman to even have an ambition.. We think as children, that I will be a pilot.. As soon as the ambition is made public – comments flow..The usual being "women don't do that".. Slowly they crush every one of ur dreams.. But one day, u think I have to do this and ur willing to sacrifice everything for that one dream, that u tend to lose focus from the actual person u are, the character or nature that u develop as woman..I dunno if I made a lot of sense, but thats what I thing πŸ™‚

  13. >interesting question The answer I think is ofcourse we have it but I think we are taught not to have ambition from the day we are born so somewhere we loose it and the few who are still left with it are either looked up by very few but most rebuked… things are changing ofcourse

  14. >@Piggy Little: I agree with you. And yes, this view cuts across generations. Interestingly, you will also find women who endorse it!@JLT: Is it priority or necessity or conditioning? Also, why do women have to choose between career and children? Why can't organisations understand that maternity should not be a reason for them to let go of a good employee? @Dee: Exactly! There are so many things that hedge in our ambitions and not always because it's a matter of priority.

  15. >Oye! Just one question each month you said and you are already popping another right at me. :(Well, like I said in the answer, it is upon a person's clarity of thought or surrounding environment in general that he/she accepts a woman with great ambitions and/or a man who weeps. πŸ™‚

  16. >D…this is really interesting! Well, I think for women to have ambition professionally is not an aberration. However, that's my view. Unfortunately, Indian society tends to think otherwise. Just as an example, I visited India in July last year after almost 5 years here in Aus where I have studied and started working in my field. The first thing I get asked by a couple of male family friends is when I am going to get married…because, after all, I am 25. They couldn't understand when I said I wanted to focus on my career and developing professionally. So people still think that all a woman is meant to do is get married and have babies and thinking about growing professionally and having your own ambitions is considered almost abnormal.But then, I like not being considered 'normal'! πŸ™‚ So I continue to be happy in pursuing my professional goals and don't give a shit about what society back in India thinks. I guess it helps being away from there and having supportive parents. Looking forward to your question of the month! πŸ™‚

  17. >Definitely not. Being ambitious is important to grow out of one's safe shell and learn to grasp challenges as opportunities to expand knowledge in the world. Awoman has every right to be as ambitious as a man.

  18. >As with most of things in Indian society, the ambition of women is also already precoded. For eg., get married, give birth to a son, take care of the family.Today, with education even as we aspire for our OWN things, we are expected to do all of the said above, which practically makes you compromise of the ambition.To answer your question, theoretically no but practically YES.

  19. >I think it is very important for everyone to be ambitious. It boosts morale and energy.I guess sometimes being ambitious is considered selfish, but it does not have to be. There is always a way to be ambitious and be a woman.

  20. >@G: Yes, you do get all kinds!@Psych Babbler: Exactly my thoughts!@Sanand: I don't know what purpose ambition serves but I do know that it's sad if one has to give it up because of gender stereotypes.@Bindhu: I like how you put it. Very true.@Lakshmi: I just love how you said that – "There's always a way to be ambitious and a woman." It's almost poetic. Just that I think it's true only when women are strong enough to realise it.

  21. >Nice post and I was waiting to read some comments :)What I don't get is D, we have these kind of discussions relating to women alone. Can women do these jobs, can they have ambitions, what clothes are they supposed to wear, how much can they study, are they correct to work after having kids, how are they supposed behave before marriage/after marriage/after kids, the list just doesn't end does it?And being a woman, one just cannot appreciate this kind of attention!As for your question, yes it is an aberration for the time being, but anything is an aberration only so long as it doesn't become a way of life.It will, someday, it will. I hope.

  22. >in my view…ambition is not a quantifiable term…Ambition is a part of every existing individual in this world…For a toddler it might just be, to be able to stand on his own but for a person might be opening a Restaurant, and when this happens it might just extend to owning a chain of restaurants…:)If you call it aberration in woman's nature, then my dear the woman is competing every other individual on the planet…

  23. >@celestialrays: I think debates and questions are a good sign. It's certainly better than having someone else decide for us our future! Although, I do agree that it is tiring to keep fighting the 'right' and 'wrong' to be ourselves!@Ctrl Z: I still think there's a difference between ambition and desire to do something.@Soulmate: I guess most of us do – in varying degrees maybe.@Sraboney: I agree.

  24. >I dont quite know how to put this, but the fact that we're still asking this question in itself is an indication…But its just a question of time

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