Recently, I was invited to the India Kids Fashion Week 2016 auditions in Mumbai and Delhi, to train children in posture, poise and help them appear confident. It was an extremely well organised event, with over 1000 registrations in each city. The carnival atmosphere made it a fun day out for parents and kids.
It was an education in human behaviour. Some parents, I realized, can be extremely pushy. They just want their kids to excel and make it. They behaved as if it was a grade 12 exam and the kids’ careers were at stake. Parents used threats, coercion, pleas and bribes to convince their children to audition. “If you don't learn, you will fail” …….. “You better do it properly, or else …..” …… “Go for the training, you will get gifts..” …… “If you do well, I will buy you a toy” …….. These were often heard lines around the vicinity of the event.
The children on the other hand were innocent, lively, miraculous beings. They were compassionate, sensitive and concerned for each other. There was no attempt to upstage anyone. Instead, they attempted to support each other, whenever possible. They prodded if someone forgot something, they chatted and made friends with great ease.
In conclusion, it felt that we adults need to learn good behaviour from the children. The kids were actually doing everything that adults only talk or instruct about. We as adults are so busy competing, we forget our humane side. I went there to teach kids, but ended up learning so much from them.