Roshni Rajagopal

Have you ever thought of changing your career? Or doing something that isn’t the ‘norm’ according to society?

For a young individual, there are so many options out there to choose from, and in many cases, an overwhelming feeling comes over them. On one side, parents and teachers tell them to go for a steady life, with a regular income and a family setup that is ‘normal’.

If you are someone who desperately wants to break away from it, Manthan Shah’s book, ‘Unstoppable: How Youth Icons Achieve Extraordinary Things’ is a must-read. With the stories of about 40 young people being featured in the book, you can take your pick on whom to draw inspiration from. Some of them include the journey of Olympians Dutee Chand and Deepa Karmakar, rapper Kaam Bhaari, track and field para-athlete Sandeep Chaudhary, astrophysicist Karan Jani, acid Attack survivor Reshma Qureshi and Sanket Deshpande, the youngest Indian to send a satellite in space, among others.

Manthan mentions in his book, “I would often visit bookstores in our leisure hours, But I couldn’t find anything aimed at young adults that talked about coming of age in a developing economy with its peculiar economic and socio-political challenges, mental health issues and explored identity and reaching one’s potential.” With this in mind, he set out the write this book after gaining inspiration from Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers. As a friend suggested, he did not want to preach in a how-to book or write a motivational guide to achieve freedom. But, he decided to write a storybook, about regular people in their highs and lows in life and how to overcome all odds to become who they are today.

Additionally, these stories are assisted by research from renowned experts in the fields of neuroscience, psychology, social sciences and leadership, to get a deeper meaning of what the author is trying to convey in a novice way. The book not only provides inspiration to create something extraordinary from ordinary circumstances and resources but also highlights important factors and provides a ‘plan of action’ to achieve one’s goals.

Manthan Shah is a former SGFI U-17 Indian table tennis national champion. He left the Table Tennis scene to pursue his degree in Business Management at SP Jain School of Global Management and is currently a senior in college. He is one of the youngest authors to be commissioned by Penguin Random House to write his first book, Unstoppable which was released in May 2022. He hosts and produces a podcast called The Planet Impact that shares the stories of young game-changers. Manthan recently won the prestigious Schwarzman Scholarship to study global affairs from Tsinghua University in Beijing. In college, he was awarded the Dean’s List and a Global Citizenship Award for academic and overall excellence.

Manthan worked on this book for 4 years, from different locations around the world, including Singapore, Madrid, Mumbai, Dubai and his hometown Ahmednagar. Very humbly he writes, “… by no means am I qualified in terms of the number of years on this planet, professional experience and degrees to be writing a self-help book. So, please look at this book as a friend sharing his notes on life.”

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