Sayyed Arbaina, a student of Christ University, Bangalore pursing her B.Com(Hons), is an international Volley Ball player and an entrepreneur as well. Arbaina represented India in Volley Ball sport & has secured 1st place in Malaysia, Srilanka, and Thailand. She has a startup of Sports Accessories and recently got Certificate of Excellence from ICCE (International Centre for Culture and Education) for completing her Entrepreneurial Skill Development Program.
1. Did you follow your dreams or it just happened in national or international level?
When I started playing I had no clue I would even continue playing the following year. I just played for 2 years that is from 3rd grade to 5th grade and I decided to stop playing and concentrate on studies. As we all have the mentality that sports is a hindrance to studies. I played my first nationals in 7th grade and I had no clue what nationals is all about. To add on we won the bronze medal for the state. Again I had no clue the importance of playing and also getting a medal until I was felicitated by the school and by the government. That’s when I realized “wow I have done something great”.After this entire uncertain journey, I decided to do a lot more for my state, school, coaches, parents, friends etc. The moment I knew I have to achieve something in life, I started my hard work. And yes it did pay off. I was very passionate about it.The passion of a dream can never be underestimated nor the power that it generates. And I’m glad my principal called my dad and spoke to him. Life is surely uncertain, and this does prove it.
2. Why did you choose volleyball as your sport?
To be very frank I randomly chose volleyball. I wasn’t forced to play this sport. But once I started playing volleyball I never turned back.
3. What and who inspires you the most?Why?
I was deeply engrossed in the game and all I knew was ”practice like you have never won and play like you have never lost”. Such lines by my coach Mr. Aslam Pasha inspired me always. His talks kept me going and we reached great heights. I listened to him carefully and stuck by his words. He has made us win matches from a situation where no one could have imagined that we would have won. His talks were so positive that we couldn’t stop ourselves from achieving.
He always told us GAME POINT IS NOT THE GAME and we used to fight back and win the game.
4. You’re also an entrepreneur. How did you get interested in that?
Being into sports since my childhood, I never imagined myself getting into the stream of entrepreneurship. I knew I had traits like strategic thinking, analytical thinking, decision making, leadership etc which are some of the traits of being an entrepreneur. In 11th grade, Few of my friends took part in the business fest, I saw them running around with tensed faces for the task they had got. I read the task and thought “ why is that so my friends are panicking for this task, It was not big a deal to solve it”. The task was about innovation. And I knew I could do better. So the next fest, I took part and I bagged the 3rd place in product development and 1st place in the business launch.
That’s when I realized that the traits I had developed in sports can be applied anywhere and everywhere. The confidence I have today is because of sports. How I think, how I handle the situation or the pressure or how I keep myself calm and work is all because of sports.
“A SPORTS PERSON IS A NATURAL ENTREPRENEUR.”
5. Basically, you are an all-rounder. What do you want to tell about it?
It wasn’t decided that I will become a national player or I will become an entrepreneur. I just did what I love. I loved volleyball, showed interest towards it & dedicated my time, energy and hard work towards it. And the result was positive. The same applies to entrepreneurship as well. I loved it and hence I excelled at it. It wasn’t decided to do everything and become an all-rounder. I just did what I wanted. The saying goes “ you don’t get what you want but you surely get what you deserve” I think I deserved every bit of my hard work. Not every person has their passion towards SPORTS AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP. Where I, was strong and aggressive on-field winning matches and medals was also tenderhearted and had my brain work for my start-up.
I have always followed my passion, was always prepared to put myself out and make sacrifices and above all I never let anyone limit my dreams.
6. How do your parents feel about what you are doing?
Having done so much at a young age is remarkable and every parent would love to see their kids achieve great things in life. Be it in sports, studies or entrepreneurship my mom never pressurized me for anything. Neither she pressurized me to win a gold, get a distinction nor to make money in my business. She always supported me even when I made huge losses and when I failed to perform in few matches. Without her, I don’t think so I could have achieved anything. But yes, she gave me the liberty of choosing anything I want to and never interfered with my work. But not to forget she always patted on my back and appreciated my work and supported me in my good and bad times. And I’m sure she will do always.
7. What motivates you?
No reward motivates me but appreciation does. To be the “better me” motivates me to practice more. I always challenged myself. And challenging again did motivate me. Before any practice sessions or any match I always challenged myself to perform better or to win. This kept me motivated to sweat it out during practice sessions or play my heart out in the tournaments.
Besides this, the smile my coaches or parents get when I achieve is priceless. When I’m on the stage receiving the meritorious student award, when I’m on the stage receiving the best sports player of the year award or when I’m on the stage as a guest of honour, the smile and tears I see on my mothers and coaches face, as they have seen my entire journey from sitting and listening to the chief guest speech to being the chief guest itself. All such tiny things motivate me to do better and better.
8. You are a sportswoman so do you follow diet chart and all? Do you wanna give any message to young girls?
No, I do not follow any diet chart. But yes, I love to be fit. I do planks, push-ups, dips, and stomach crunch regularly irrespective of me going to practice or not. These few exercises keep me fit and make me look good. I would like to tell all the girls to go ahead and play any game or do anything that they like(legal). Do not stop yourself, do not listen to the society who is stopping you from doing anything. The moment you know you love it, please go for it and give it a shot. Who knows you might just be awesome at it.
9. What will be your future career sports or your startup in sports accessories?
Future is surely uncertain so I do not know where I will be.But, I wish to be an entrepreneur and continue my service towards sports. In this way, I’m connected to both the things I love the most.
10. Do you want to leave any message or tips to aspiring sportsmen or aspiring startup leaders?
To all those who aspire to be a sports person or an entrepreneur I would like to tell you that if you love it go for it. Do not impose anything on you. Dedication, passion, commitment and hard work are very important.Above all respect your coaches, teachers, and players, this has always been my integral policy, where I never forget to forego it. You need to Know how to balance sports, studies, business or extra curriculum activities that you are in. Plan it before you do it. I have always been very systematic and I plan everything before I do. I’m very particular about TIME. This is something that everyone should learn and respect the most. Once it’s gone it’s gone forever. So do value it. The moment you take care of such tiny aspects, everything falls into place and then there is no one who can stop you from achieving what you dream.
Also published on Medium.