I do remember our tutor for training in Insurance industry saying a story on the last day before we all left, fortified with all the knowledge he imparted to us on how to succeed (I never made it in that industry!).

It was about a 'bird in the hand' different to the conventional one.

A very famous and reputed sage was in his cabin on top of a hill and vast numbers of people were queuing to see and talk to him. Usually it took about 4 hours or so of queuing to be in front of him. The sage always had his eyes closed all the time even while talking to others. Two boys were seeing this crowd every day for some days.

One was a perpetual doubter and a troublemaker (let us call him 'John'). His friend, Jack, was like most of us - afraid to go against his close friend John.

John said the sage was a phony and he would prove it in no time. Jack said, yes you may be right; however all these people cannot be wrong to assume he was real and famous. John said people are like sheep and follow each other and large crowds do not prove anything. Jack said that you may be right but he was not happy.

John caught a small bird, given birth to a few minutes ago, in a nest from the branch of a tree and he held it in his palm covering his fingers but not crushing the bird. Jack said 'what are you doing?' John said let us see the sage and I will ask him whether he could guess what I have in my right hand? Jack said  'What if he says it is a bird'.

John said might be the sage might have his eyes deceptively open without us noticing.

But I will ask him whether the bird was alive or dead? Jack said what would you do?

John said very simple - if he says it is dead, I would open my fingers and show the live bird. If he says it is alive, I will tighten my fingers and crush it to death and show him.

Jack said that it may be clever but fooling him is not what he liked and was very apprehensive.

Still they waited in the queue and John was in front of the sage who had his eyes closed and asked 'what would you like young man?'

John asked whether the sage could say what he had in his right hand.

Sage replied with closed eyes, 'it must be a young bird given birth to 4-5 hours ago'.

Jack was stunned and looked at John who was thinking of his glory to come.

John asked 'whether the bird was alive or dead'?

The sage then opened his eyes and said 'young man the bird is in your hand. It is all up to you; you can make it live or crush it to death. I can do nothing about it'.

Our tutor then said 'our career and success is all entirely dependent on us and not on him. We all have the bird in our hands - at various stages in our lives - studies, exams, jobs, marriage etc. it is all up to us to demonstrate and succeed'.

I feel like that tutor - all your careers depend on you as individuals, not on others. I hope you make a thumping success of your careers.