Khans rule Bollywood! It’s Shahrukh, Salman, Aamir who have ruled Bollywood for over 20 years now. But then there’s Akshay Kumar, who has carved out his own niche in the industry ridden with nepotism and camp-ism (read SRK camp, Bachchan camp and Salman camp). Though it may seem Akshay has been overshadowed by the Khans, his caliber and “head-on-the-shoulders” attitude has made him one of the most bankable stars in Bollywood today.
Akshay Kumar, who was born as Rajiv Bhatia, is a legend in the making in Bollywood. This weekend, when I watched the episode of Koffee with Karan, Season 4, I was pleasantly surprised by the handsome 46-year-old and his dedication to the cinematic craft and his personal life. I didn’t expect him to spill words of wisdom, because those are often expressed by likes of Amitabh Bachchan etc.
Here are the top 5 things we all can imbibe from Akshay:
- Always strive for a disciplined life – Also known as India’s Jackie Chan, Akshay is a poster boy for hard work and healthy living. He works out avidly, has a Black belt in Taekwondo and learned Muay Thai in Bangkok. He doesn’t care for late night parties and doesn’t consume alcohol or cigarettes. Poster child for an anti-addiction campaign for India? Perhaps!
- Be a self-leader – Akshay was not signed up by iconic big banners like the Yash Raj Films or Dharma Productions at anytime during his career. Yet he generated a brand value for himself as a sustaining superstar in Bollywood. He carried the weight of his movies without godfathers, and that too with immense humility. Over the years, he has continued supporting new directors and producers helping their careers along the way.
- Early to bed and early to rise – Akshay is known for waking up bright and early, by 4:30 AM actually! He is done with his workouts, morning news papers, errands, family time and breakfast by 7:00 AM. Despite being a busy super star (granted he has a lot of help), he is able to pick up and drop off his son from school and eat meals with his family. He goes to bed early as well, ensuring his body is well rested and geared up!
- Keep evolving – Akshay has proven his mettle in all genres of cinema – action, thriller, romance, comedy and so on. He is one actor who has truly grown over the year and is not afraid to take risks. As a result, there’s isn’t a role he cannot pull off! A lesson for all of us – keep trying new things and you never know what new opportunities might knock your door.
- Sometimes being diplomatic is best – “Tact is the knack of making a point without making an enemy,” said Sir Isaac Newton. Akshay lives by the principle. Despite being prompted many times by Karan Johar on the show to talk about sticky professional and personal situations (read the Joker debacle and the Priyanka Chopra affair saga), Akshay did not spill the beans on his circumstances. He also went on to say that he does not wish to ever talk bad about anyone. That’s building good karma for future success!
So here goes! There are good things we can all learn from the successful people around us, especially the ones who have kept their humility climbing the ladder of success.