The trauma of being orphaned turned Bruce Wayne into Batman; injustice turned Bruce Banner into 'The Hulk'; tragedy turned Peter Parker into Spiderman … and I often think that entrepreneurs have a lot in common with superheroes (and that there should be more Superheroines!).
I am Yudhika. My name comes from a Sanskrit religious verse and means the "Goddess who bestows victory'. How ironic that a female child is given such a name, yet is destined to be raised in a male-dominated home where her childhood is plagued by poverty and punctuated with hardship and domestic violence?
Yet the lives of the comic book heroes seem to follow a pattern, when some sort of trauma sets them on a new path. Bruce Wayne becomes Gotham City's Batman, standing up against crime after losing his parents. I grew up in rather challenging circumstances - nothing was ever easy. We lived in a little town in South Africa and life was far from bliss. A father who would not hold down a job, a mother who was uneducated and unemployed, the red tape that went with being in a male-dominated Indian home, and the poverty. It's hard to believe now, but I have experienced hunger.
Life deals us our very own unique hand and this plays a role in the path we follow. I have come to believe that trying times and difficulties encourage us to think creatively and 'out of the box'. Even as a little girl, I decided that my life would be different. I was going to turn my life into something extraordinary and long before I was an adult, the first spark of entrepreneurship flickered in my mind. Most kids excelled at school; I excelled too, even though I knew that I would never be able to attend a university – but I was determined to develop learning skills. I started out as an entrepreneur at the age of 14.
Opportunities were not going to knock on my door, so I mastered the art of either finding a gap or creating one. My first job was in a hotel kitchen wrapping cutlery in paper serviettes and I soon graduated to assisting with desserts. Being in the kitchen gave me the idea for my first little start-up, at 15, making samosas and cakes, chocolate éclairs and savories for the local Rotary Club. It also connected me with regular hotel guest who then became my customers.
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