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Archive for the ‘Pain’ Category

38-did-you-noticeIf you get irritated by the fact that despite your best efforts, all you get is criticism for what could have been done better, then ask yourself if you are guilty of the same mistake.  Each of us guilty, albeit in varying degrees of being critical, unappreciative and  finger pointing, especially when things do not happen as we plan or hope for. Occasionally some of us even berate ourselves for our lack of success and / or our failures because we find it hard to accept that we could not achieve what we set out to do. The point is that we are pained when others do not appreciate our toil, sweat and tears and unfortunately we too succumb to the same when we undervalue ourselves and others.

Obviously no one can avoid mistakes. However we need to look at mistakes, failures, lack of success from a more holistic view. This will enable one to be less critical, more appreciative and value the efforts, the sacrifices and the struggle without overvaluing momentarily success. The former gives us work ethics; success is an important milestone and motivator but cannot substitute for the discipline, the hard work and the rigor that is the corner stone of every successful person.

So how must one react to mistakes?

Acknowledge – Mistakes happen but it is the way we acknowledge the mistake that ensures it does not cascade into a disaster. If we have made a mistake, be honest about it and acknowledge it. If others have made mistakes, acknowledge the mistake without passing judgment and / or getting emotional about it. Mistakes happen for a variety of reasons and it is patently unfair to judge the mistake without grasping all the facts.

Appreciate – Mistakes happen because someone decided to do something. Even not doing something is a decision. In most cases there is honest effort, clear goals and possibly deep thinking that preceded the action.  One needs to appreciate all these, for often mistakes are not an outcome of these but a result of calculations gone wrong. By appreciating something, the signal is that one values everything done to get success and that not achieving it, is painful for all concerned.

Motivate – Criticism is the easiest thing to do; the challenge is to find something to motivate those who failed, to try again and hopefully succeed. Motivation is essential to keep up morale, kindle hope and most of all to express confidence in the person/s. Motivation pushes people to overcome the past, focus on the future and succeed beyond their capabilities.

Suggest – In the chaos that often follows failure, critics would give opinions, point out mistakes and berate the failure. Instead, an objective feedback in the form of suggestions would be more acceptable to those who are already dejected. In calmer moments they would review the performance and ponder over the suggestions and possibly come out with a better game plan to succeed.

Exude optimism – Every individual requires reassurance; if you are successful you need to be reassured that you can have a repeat performance but it is when you fail that you need to feel that still have it in you to try again and succeed. You exude optimism by being willing to lay your bets on success the next time around, by willing to join the journey the next time around and by proclaiming aloud that you have full faith and confidence. Optimism opens up numerous possibilities, gives greater confidence, you prepared to correct your previous mistakes and most of all you are ready to begin again.

Make it a point to notice the tears, the sadness and the pain first; acknowledge that and only then focus on the mistake.

Try these

  • So list your top 3 failures and what where the reactions of people close to you then. How did you cope with those failures?
  • What did you try differently and did not succeed in the first attempt?  What did you learn from that experience?
  • Do you recollect a time when you criticized someone for a failure and on hindsight realize that either you were wrong or too harsh?
  • What are the things / activities that you are keen to start experiment with but fear of failure is holding you back? How about giving some of those desires a try?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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35-pain-changes-people

Broadly pain comes in two types- physical pain and emotional pain. Both types of pain are tough to deal with. However, the emotional pain is often the one most tough to cope with, because the emotional pain hurts from inside and is much more difficult to overcome. The physical pain can at times be excruciating too and equally difficult to cope with. The challenge of emotional pain is that it provokes questions like why me? What if? Will it change my life for the worse? Can I ever cope with it? that makes it hard for an individual to find satisfactory answers to. The result is that emotional pain triggers in us a negative attitude to people, lose confidence in ourselves and a ‘poor me’ syndrome overwhelms us.

Emotional pain is non physical pain. This means that the pain is felt in the head and heart. Death of a loved is the most common emotional pain but since death is a reality everyone has to deal with, most people can get over this pain over time. Of course there are exceptions like the sudden death of young person or the sudden death of a dear pet. However, emotional pain felt when a marriage breaks down or when one gets an unexpected pink slip or one is made aware of a serious ailment is much more difficult to handle. The most common response to emotional pain are as under:

Trusting less: Emotional pain, especially if it is the result of a disconnect with another person be it a lover/ spouse or employer would seriously affect the aggrieved party/ parties and would often result in them at least temporarily losing their confidence in other people. This means that going forward, it takes them time to let go of the past, are always wary of people around especially new people and would never make a commitment to a relationship personal/ professional without being circumspect about the future.

Thinking more:  Emotional pain always magnifies the problem in the eyes of the aggrieved person. It also makes a person think of various worse case scenarios, make them interject varied negative possibilities to a possible solution and largely make them feel victimized. The over thinking limits their vision to see effective alternative solutions. It also adds to their mental turmoil and consequently  it impacts their personal, social and professional  life.

Becoming a recluse:  People who are emotionally pained tend to become recluse. They shun social contact, prefer their own solitude and face psychological trauma. They find it hard to connect with people for they trust less, think more and believe that no one can help them. They wallow in self pity, have delusions/ fears of a second wave of trauma and adapt to solitude for company. Unfortunately that also means they have lesser chances of picking themselves out of their emotional rut.

Pain changes people. Life becomes harder; living even tougher and at times dying seems like a perfect escape.

Be aware of the dangers of letting emotional pain overwhelm us and make us irrational. As long as there is life there is hope. Listen to both your inner reason and to the advice of well meaning friends. Learn to trust your instincts as well as the voice of love and reason of your loved ones who would do all within their power to help you overcome your trauma. Do not cut yourself from the world around; remember man is a social animal and your best chance to be emotionally stable would be by interacting with others. After all sharing joy doubles it and sharing grief halves it.

Try these:

  1. List out 3 painful moments of your life. How did you react to each of these moments? Do you still feel that pain even today or has time helped you overcome the pain?
  2. So which of the following emotional baggage are you still carrying with you
  • Having a breakup
  • Having a dear one insult/ hurt you
  • Hearing a rude/ disrespectful / sarcastic comment about yourself
  • Being let down / cheated  by a dear friend / colleague
  • Being forced to sacrifice your ethics in order to succeed

How did the above effect you. What have you done to regain your confidence after facing the above?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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Telling the truth may have often resulted in embarrassing situations, perhaps have left painful memories too and may have even triggered anger and fury completely disproportionate to the facts as revealed. Perhaps we may also sly grin at the escapades that we managed by suppressing the truth or outrightly lying. Look back dispassionately and perhaps you may also recall a number of times when the truth was guessed by others who because of their maturity, goodwill and / or need to protect you played along and kept things under wraps. On hindsight more often than not, every time you hid the truth you were left restless, burdened by guilt and with the Damocles sword of being found out looming over your head.

Even today if one were to tell the truth and it is an inconvenient truth, our body language would betray our fear, our quivering voice expose our vulnerability and our feeble attempts at justification would add to our misery. The good part though is that when we speak the truth, our heart is unburdened, the mind is at peace and the consequences seem bearable. Telling the truth is not simply a matter of articulating the reality but it also involves standing up for rights, standing by those wronged, refusing to toe the wrong line and standing up to a brute majority who may intimidate or attempt to cow you down.

The truth is that ‘fear’ is an overwhelming emotion that threatens to derail us telling the truth.  The best antidote for this malaise is the realization that the truth needs no ‘alibi’, it is all pervasive and when shared it shields the reality from being pricked and punctured in any form.  Yes, it is true that it takes a lot of courage to tell the truth and often our quivering voice will expose our human frailty; but the truth when spoken ‘shouts out aloud’ unshackled, unburdened and ubiquitously.

Action Points:

  1. Try playing the card game ‘ Bluff’. Notice how you can catch frequently catch another’s bluff and also how tough it is for you to bluff.
  2. Ask a close family member and an intimate friend to separately list out 5 aspects of your personality that they believe you need to improve upon. When reading the list be aware of the emotions that run through your mind on reading each criticism jotted down by them. How many of the points they mentioned are absolutely true? What and how do you propose to make use of this truth to improve yourself?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our Inspirational and Motivational Blog

www.poweract.blogspot.com

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To conquer fear is the beginning of wisdom.”  Bertrand Russell

All of us without exception would have experienced fear in some form or the other. It is equally possible that most of us would have overcome most of these fears but are plagued by some select fears still. There would also be the more unfortunate lot who perhaps have not been able to overcome some of the fears and continue to be terrorized. While extreme psychological problems could explain acute fears and phobia that would require expert treatment, for the vast majority the fears they suffer from are largely self imposed, partly justified but definitely not to be ignored. It is essential that each of us confront our fears or they will be shackles that will limit our ability to soar higher in our life.

 Here are 3 ways to conquer our fears.

 Acknowledge them. Most times we tend to ignore our fears and hope they go away. Other times we are so ashamed of it we hide it to the best of our ability. Like a good doctor who focuses on the diagnosis, one must be ready to face the reality and identify our fears no matter how trivial it may seem to others. By acknowledging our fears we are pinpointing the problem, we become more conscious and aware of the reality and we then have an opportunity to work on eliminating the problem. Eg. Many people are afraid of change. However they would mask it in the garb of  being comfortable with the existing setup or dismiss suggestions of change as ‘ not really suited for an old dog to do learn new tricks’. The danger here is that change may overtake us and then we would crib that we missed the opportunity or that we weren’t given a fair chance to keep up with new systems etc.

Assess them. It is essential to be pragmatic about our fears and asses them. Not all fears need to be confronted. Many a fear can be ignored for it might not impact us directly. A fear of going underwater or paragliding are not majorly career limiting or life impacting unless one wants to make a career in it. However it is imperative that we assess each of our fears that we acknowledge and rationalize its relative importance in our life. For a lawyer in court effective public speaking skills would be almost as important as knowing the law. Theatrics may not count for much although it may have some impact too. By assessing the fears we can pay special attention to those that are critical and take corrective steps.  Eg. Our fear of public speaking could possibly be the result of a failed public performance in childhood for which we were mercilessly chided. However if we cloak it under the garb of being shy and do nothing about it we would never overcome it and possibly our potential would be limited and stunted to that extend.

Attack them: There are no soft options to confront our fears. However if we manage to appreciate the psychological and logical reasoning for our fears we would have won half the battle. The tougher part is to attack our fears by taking the risk of confronting it. This must be done cautiously, deliberately and purposefully. In being cautious one has to take steps to ensure that the process is chosen with care and that it won’t make a bad situation worse. In being deliberate the process is executed to a plan with safe guards to minimize the risks if any. In being purposeful there are planned goals that one seeks to attain and then thereafter one resets the bar to achieve better results.

In overcoming our fears, we achieve 3 things. We eliminate our fear or at least minimize it, we increase our potential and end up being confident and successful

 Remember: “Like Pain, fear can be controlled”    Joss Whedon

 Try these:

  1.  Identify 3- 5 of your fears and outline at least 3 steps to overcome it. Eg. Fear of mathematics or fear of snakes/ cockroaches/ rats etc. or fear of meeting people in authority like a school principal/ chairman etc.
  2.  How would you react to the following situations?
  • During your annual medical checkup the doctor expresses a doubt that you have a possible cancerous lymph node.
  • A file containing confidential information which is kept with for safe keeping is suddenly not traceable after the office has been shifted to a new location.
  • You have borrowed your friends car for an urgent trip and unfortunately another rash driver smashes his vehicle into the car you are driving and badly damages it.
  • Your best friend accuses you of gossiping behind his/ her back and refuses to have any ties with you.

 This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

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Peace of mind is that mental condition in which you have accepted the worst. Lin Yutang

I have been beseeched by inquiries from well meaning friends as to why I have not been consistently updating my posts as I was doing  through 2010. I do plead guilty of being a tad lethargic but more importantly there have been other personal, professional and social commitments that are now competing very hard to be treated on par with my other priorities. I must confess that in the process, the daily blog has got pushed out to the periphery but I can assure my readers that it will still remain a priority for me. It has taken me a while to attain peace of mind with respect to taking the decision to reduce my daily blog to writing 4-5 times a week. Yes, today’s quote aptly sums up my dilemma and my response to it.

One dreaded word that is the bane of those seeking peace of mind is CHANGE. This is because for almost all of us change signifies a shift in the status quo and this means one has to constantly readjust to adapt to the change. Most of us are tempered to follow a planned, preordained path and anything that disturbs this causes anxiety which translates to mean that it disturbs our peace of mind. To cope with change, the focus should be on looking at change as an allay rather than an adversary.  A simple example could be the stimulus that makes us follow a good diet and exercise regime. While one has to possibly sacrifice some of the most tasty and appetizing food, the pain of strain and effort in exercising  begins to both unnerve us and makes us anxious about coping up. If what drives us to diet and exercise is fear of illness then both the effort and the results would be labored. On the other hand if it is our inner desire to feel good, look healthy and be fit that is the stimulant the results would be far more spectacular.

Worry is the real culprit in disturbing the peace of mind. This is because we are constantly anticipating problems, imagining worst case scenarios and oozing negative emotions and feelings. One reason for this is that we believe that it makes the reality easier to bear if the worst happens. What we fail to see is that most of worries never happen and so we have expended our energies fruitlessly. Equally tragic is the fact that by worrying we have often missed out on opportunities and possibilities of learning, earning and growing.  The trick to tackle worry is change our mindset and attitude. This means one has to work on one’s self belief and positive attitude. This does not mean that we ignore our concerns but we build up the will power to address our concerns by having alternatives lined up but after that we proceed to leverage the opportunities that are available to us. An example of this could be those who worry about a job loss if the company is shut down during a recession. If the probability is high they would plan out the alternatives but having done so they would go about doing their job so well that they would be retained till the end because of their sheer performance.

Accepting the reality is where people really flounder. Very often when faced with an unpleasant reality, the common response of most people is denial. Denial simply implies that people do not accept the reality. They tend to fight it, ignore it, manipulate it and camouflage it. They expend their energies in a futile way hoping that some miracle would restore their original status quo. Subconsciously too they are aware that they are fighting a losing cause and hence do not enjoy the peace of mind that could help them cope with the reality. People who are detected with life changing or life threatening illness or disabilities would for example try all types of cures including alternative therapy, faith healing and could even fall prey to the guile’s of god men. Finally it is only when they reconcile to the reality that they actually give up fighting the illness and learn to enjoy the rest of their life. Enjoying life particular all that is left when we run short of time is perhaps when peace of  mind is experienced in its regal splendor and majesty.

Remember: “You’ll never find peace of mind until you listen to your heart.”  George Michael

Try this:

  1. We find it hard to forgive ourselves for our indiscretions. If we carry this burden then we lose our peace of mind. Saying sorry is a very simple means to retain our peace of mind. Read the following to know more about forgiving ourselves. https://actspot.wordpress.com/2010/12/10/forgiving-ones-own-self/
  2. Check if incidents in the following situations are even today making you lose your peace of mind
  • Your inability to forgive someone who wronged you
  • Your personal negative qualities e.g. Quick temper/ extreme jealously/ possessiveness/ avariciousness etc
  • Some incident from the past that has traumatized you e.g. dog bite in child hood/ scenes from some horror movies / being ditched by a loved one

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

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Life’s under no obligation to give us what we expect. Margaret Mitchell

When things don’t go the way we expect it to or wish it to go, we blame life’s unfairness and feel cheated and discriminated against. What we often fail to understand is that life offers everyone, without exception, an opportunity and it also poses challenges to each one of us, both of which help shape us and mould our character. That apart, the mere fact that we are alive is life’s greatest gift to us and we need to be both grateful and appreciative of this wonderful boon and must strive to leverage this reality to make a mark on this world.

It is true that a beggar, a handicapped person, an orphan, and illegitimate child, widows and widowers etc. would have a valid reason to ask why life has been unfair to us and presented us with a strike against us so early in life as compared to the apparently happy people all around. The reality is that even the most happy people have spells of disillusionment about the state of the world, rampant poverty, the inequality of wealth, their own personal and private problems like ill health or truant children or sibling rivalry or wealth related disputes etc. Even more astonishing is the fact that there are millions of people actually searching for ‘ happiness’ and pursuing varied paths from spiritual enlightenment journeys to experimenting with psychedelic music to drugs to sex and they even traverse the twilight zone of attempting suicide.

Look again at our own life and we should be delighted that we are spared the ordeal of the numerous types of people listed above. Our complaints if any, are miniscule in comparison and our blessings gigantic in reality. More insightful will be the realization that life has given everyone an opportunity and the freedom to pursue our goals with a few hurdles thrown in between to make us value our life more.  Life chose us to be a visible tribute to the powers of procreation and progress; what we do with our life and how we make it shine and flower are completely left to us. Having given us the opportunity to play the game of life and having given us the broad ground rules of the game, one of which is that there would be new hurdles that we need to cross, life also gives us some potent powers like imagination, fortitude, guts, positive thinking and the like to help us play well. Life is under no obligation to change the goal posts to suit our individual needs.

If there are some who even while reading this post, have their own private miseries and grouse against life’s unfairness. They must be grateful that they have access to a computer, a net connection, literacy and above all the gift of sight which enables them to read the contents of this post and possibly take heart from it. What about the millions who wallow in their own miseries and self pity cursing life and fate with no hope of anyone enlightening them about the opportunities galore around them, which they can harness and elevate themselves from their own cesspool of misery and haplessness.  Will you be able to use the opportunity life has given you to make a difference to those around you and attempt to enlighten the despondent and the failures that life begins when HOPE sprouts within ones heart.  I have attempted to use my talents to share my thoughts; can you carry the message further?

Remember: “The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company… a church… a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you… we are in charge of our Attitudes.”  Charles R. Swindoll

Try this:

  1. Name a person, an activity and a situation that really upsets you. Make a conscious effort to appreciate 3 things in each of these that actually benefits you despite the fact that overall you do not like it. Does this appreciation lessen your dislike for the person, the activity or situation?  Also ask if your irritation, annoyance or dislike is because of you prejudice and irrationality?
  2. Find unique ways to enrich the lives of those around you. It could be simple things like sharing a SMS joke ( not the risqué jokes but something that is insightful), passing on an informative paper cutting, sharing an inspiring Youtube video link, engaging in a conversation with someone who is normally shunned etc.  Experience the feeling of self worth that you suddenly perceive within you. You also realize that you have so many ways to enrich your own life and the lives of those around.
  3. Do also read the post in our weekly blog www.poweract.blogspot.com on the topic of LIFE –  Love Inside Finding Expression

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

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One cannot get through life without pain … What we can do is choose how to use the pain life presents to us.  Bernie S. Siegel, M.D.

Broadly speaking one will experience 3 types of pain. The physical pain is what we are most familiar with like breaking our bones or getting grazed when one falls. The emotional pain is one we experience when our emotions are put to test like in case of a broken relationship be it with parents, spouse, siblings or children. The psychological pain is one we may be subject to but not acutely conscious off as will be the case if we are the butt of jokes amongst classmates or if one is constantly being belittled or humiliated. Almost all of us would have suffered from one or more of such pain but in most cases we have overcome it and gone on to forget it too.

Yet when we are asked to look back and recollect some of the more painful memories it is the emotional and psychological pain that often comes immediately to mind. Painful experiences leave a deep and sordid aftermath which can be life altering whichever way one takes it. For those who are deeply scarred by the event will always walk in the shadow of that pain and will attribute all their failures and miseries to that pain. On the other hand those who are more resilient and positive will use that painful learning to fire up their spirit and conquer their fears and hurt brought about by the pain. Herein lies the test of the true spirit of life – will you conquer pain or will you let the pain imprison you? For every Helen Keller and Douglas Bader there are a thousand others who give in to their pain and commit suicide. Here is the extraordinary story of a man cheated by fate once but one of those bravehearts who never let fate rob him of his freedom of expression; click here to read on about M.P.Anil Kumar http://sojish.com/topics-mainmenu-31/63-notes-a-articles/196-airborne-to-chairborne.html

While it might be pretty easy to pontificate about pain ( as I am doing right now) it is the person in the line of fire who has to experience the agony of the pain. One never knows but tomorrow it could be either mine or your turn to be part of that painful experience.  Death of a loved one is a pain that each of us would have experienced at some point. In all probability we would have soon taken the rational bypass  that death is a reality and consoled ourselves that we have to face the reality. However if the person who died is in the prime of youth or a child the inevitable question that haunts us is ‘Why?’.  More traumatic to deal with is the pain brought on by  a drastic physical change the like losing a limb or being a paraplegic, for these are life altering not just for the person but also for the family. Not far behind is the pain of seeing a loved one suffer from dementia, Alzheimer’s, motor neuron disease etc. all of which have no cure as on date and yet slowly wastes the body away causing deep anguish to both the patient and to the family. Can we realistically handle such pain?

Yes one can minimize the impact of such pain through a mixture of pragmatism, counseling, prayer and positive thinking. Pragmatism will help one comprehend the reality with fortitude. Counseling will alleviate the  panic and help channelize ones energy into acceptance of the reality. Prayer is the one channel that will send a person tons of hope to cope. Positive thinking will provide the oxygen that nourishes body and mind, strengthen ones resolve and provide us a shield to guard against depression and a feeling of hopelessness.

Remember: Pain is inevitable; suffering is optional.

Try this:

  1. As and when you can, try walking barefoot on a tar road or on cobble stone walkway for at least 5 – 10 minutes. What are your feelings? Do you give up even before you have walked a  100 meters? Do you get irritated saying ‘ Why am I doing such a stupid thing?’ To experience the pain brought about by fear you can visit a nearby zoo or snake park and try  (with permission of course) handle a non poisonous snake.
  2. Plan a visit to a local old age home/ a hospice / home for the mentally challenged and spend a day with the inmates. How do you think the staff of these places motivate themselves to work for those who are in pain and suffering?

This post is courtesy www.actspot.com

You are also invited to visit our WEEKLY Inspirational and Motivational Blog www.poweract.blogspot.com

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