Thursday, January 18, 2018
Blog Page 9

What to do when life sucks

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“When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you, till it seems as though you could not hang on a minute longer, never give up then, for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.”

                                                                                                                                                                                       -H.B. Stowe

I think most of us have had days and likely longer periods like weeks or months when we’ve thought about life like this and felt pretty glum. When you’ve had several setbacks in a row, bad luck or things aren’t going your way – even though you do your best – then it may feel like: my life simply and honestly sucks.

In this article I’d like to share 10 things that have helped me when I’ve asked myself: why does my life suck?

  • It is fine to feel frustrated. When things aren’t going your way then you sometimes get frustrated. That’s natural and OK. So instead of trying to push these emotions away accept and process them. Reconnect with your present and don’t focus on the past or the future. Relax!
  • Be grateful. I say this a lot but feeling of genuine gratitude surely helps in difficult times. So, zoom out a bit because during those times it’s easy to go from feeling sorry for yourself for a while into full on victim thinking that lasts for too long and drags you down. Be thankful for all you have, irrespective of however small it is.
  • Focus on HOW-TOs and not on WHAT-IFs. Spend more of your time on finding the small and practical steps you can take to make things better. Refrain from thinking about the negatives because negatives drag you down.
  • Remind yourself that a new day awaits. Don’t be upset because this day didn’t work out well. You still have a tomorrow waiting for you with open arms.
  • Remind yourself of the positive. Ask yourself what is going on well in my life? This question though seems insignificant but is a subtle reminder that your life doesn’t really suck. It’s just a matter of time and time shall change soon.
  • Value your setbacks. Don’t repent over them. Learn from them. Learn from your mistakes and make amends. Mistakes make you a better person. Learn and move on.
  • It’s OK to have a bad day. Some days won’t work out even if you use smart strategies and that is natural. In order to value the good times, it is necessary to have bad encounters. Happiness is relative and so is good time. Just hang in there!
  • Vent it out. Sometimes all we need is a shoulder to cry on. A moral support or a friend who is there by our side when the time is sour. We don’t really need advice, all we need is an ear that listens it all. So, find your f]shoulder and stick to it.

It’s always darkest before the dawn. The happiest moments always come after the struggles. So even if it looks like its not working out. Wait because magic is about to happen.

You only live once?

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People think ‘You Only Live Once’ and that automatically gives them a free pass to do whatever they want. However stupid, however insane, however unjust or however lazy, everything gets justified under this canopy of YOLO.

How about thinking about it this way? YOLO YODO! Yeah, YODO. ‘You only die once.’

YODO implies that, while the goal of fun can still be achieved, the person recognizes the responsibilities they have. ‘You Only Die Once’ calls into play the fact that the ‘YOLO’ choices made do have an end result. YOLO mentality is selfish and it’s disgusting. Whereas YODO mentality is responsible and encourages us to take smart and righteous decisions.

While YOLO focuses on living on living in the moment. YODO emphasises on the need to think of the implications of your doings. Using acronyms like ‘YOLO’ and statements like: “I’m not hurting anyone, I just want to be happy!” are what cause people to lose sight of life and the future. Life isn’t about you, it isn’t about me, it’s about everyone. What you do does matter, who you are does matter, you matter and so does every other person. If we all ‘YOLO’, would the world be a happy place?

Imagine a world, where everybody is self-centered and nobody gives a shit about how others would feel. Would you want to live in a world where you are not treasured? Where you are not a preference? Where your choices are restricted to yourself and nobody else? Where nobody could make anybody happy?

Such a gloomy place to live in, right? No friends! Just some self-sufficient machines around.

So leave a little sparkle wherever you go. Paint this world red. Don’t live once.

Live everyday and die once. Accomplish things daily. Live happily daily. Live fully before you die. Use everyday like an opportunity to make memories, to do something good, to do something worthwhile.

Leave a trail of your existence for others to cherish. Self obsession or YOLO are for no good.

Go YODO!

#OnlyYODO

#NoYOLO

What to do when you’re feeling low

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When we are feeling low, everything seems uninteresting. All we want to do is stay back at home, curl up in our comforter and stick to our beds. In the meanwhile, nothing can be done because we don’t feel like doing anything at all. Each one of us goes through days that are hard on us, days on which nothing feels right. However, accommodating those negative thoughts isn’t any solution.

So here, I’ve prepared a list of the TO-DOs for whenever your spirit is down in the dumps. Check ’em out.

  • Stop going hard on yourself. When we feel low, it is quite normal for us to curse ourselves for not getting things done the right way. Realise that it wasn’t your fault. Something’s are just not meant to happen and while something’s are meant to happen, they are just not meant to stay. Believe in yourself and all else will follow.
  • Get up and get going. The best way to undo a bad mood is to get up and move your butt. Go to gym for a workout, turn on the volume and do some dance moves, go out for a walk or do whatever is convenient for you. Just get moving!
  • Surround yourself with your loved ones. When you’re in a blue, family and friends might give you a clue. (that just rhymed :P) What I mean here is, Sometimes all you need is a friend or a close family member to listen to you and help you get some stuff off your chest. Pick up your phone, call them up or go meet them in person.
  • Laugh it out. Watch a comedy scene or a stand up comedian on youtube or a funny movie. Our brain behaves how we want it to behave. You trick your brain into laughing and happy hormones will get released making you even happier and lifting up your mood.
  • Eat healthy. When we are stressed, what do we binge eat? You are right! JUNK FOOD. What should we do rather? Eat healthy! Grab on some nuts or salads and munch on them. It makes you feel better and you feel good about yourself for eating healthy.
  • Do something exciting. Think of what excites you? Is it a bike ride, a long drive, a dessert, or a shopping spree? Do whatever makes a dull day exciting for you.

These tips are surely going to help you lift yourself up in your not-so-good days. These are effortless techniques that can be tried and I promise, you won’t regret.

Have a good day!

High school to college life : the transition is not that easy

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The transition from school to college is probably the toughest transition we have to make in our life. Mainly, for most of us, this was/is the first major transition. Also, the lifestyle, learning process, eating habits, way of thinking, etc make a transition too. Let’s see how life changes and how to ensure that it’s a smooth transition.

  • In school life, everything is spoon-fed to the children. From providing additional notes of chapters to providing answers to home assignments, everything is made easily available to the students, for them to just cram it and score well in exams.
  • In college, you are on your own. There are no notes or answers provided by the Professors to ease the student’s job. You find your own notes, study yourself and work all by yourself to score decent marks. Lack of resources to prepare for exams tops the list which causes stress in freshers.
  • The schedule in schools is usually fixed at 8 am to 2 pm. It is predictable and not very flexible. Classes happen on working days within this time period.
  • The schedule in colleges is more flexible and unpredictable. There might be lectures whole day or there might be no lecture at all or there might be a huge break in between just two lectures.
  • In school, you might blame your teacher for not warning you for submitting that assignment on time or your parents for not waking you at time for school.
  • In college, you have to take up your own responsibility. Wake yourself up for that class at 8 am, Professors won’t remind you to submit your journals. You gotta own your shit!
  • In school, you may or may not participate in extra-curriculars. You can survive the school being a nerd.
  • College requires you to enrol yourself in extra-curricular activities for enhancing your Curriculum Vitae; otherwise your job prospects might get affected.

 

So, we see the transition is like an inversion of lifestyle, learning habits and thinking style. But don’t fear, this seemingly scary transition can be smoothened up. Here’s how-

  • Take good notes in class and consult professors for the books that could be consulted. This way you will have authentic & sufficient resources and you won’t be stressed about preparing for exams.
  • Organize your time well. There might be classes or no classes at all. Don’t waste your time lazing around in the campus. Utilise it for your studies or extra-curriculars. When in college, Time is what is hard to find.
  • Take responsibility for your own self. Make sure you complete assignments on time, attend sufficient lectures, manage your extras and provide yourself a good diet. Mommy won’t be around, to nag about everything, every time!
  • Make friends in your batch, they are of great help when you have to miss your lecture or in case of any doubt.
  • Keep in good touch with a few professors. If you can manage to keep in touch with all of your professors, it would be like cheery to the icing. Professors are the best guides when it comes to academic or any college related issue.
  • Join societies or sports teams. These help in development. And they make college fun.
  • Know your roommates. They are people you have to share your room with. Make yourself comfortable around them. Not having a good roommate, makes this transition troublesome.
  • Feel confident and good about this new beginning. “Well begun is half done.” Make efforts to make a good beginning and rest will take care of itself.

 

These are some tips you can follow to ensure a smooth transition. College life is probably going to be the best time of your life. Explore your horizons! Make it as constructive as possible. Don’t be fearful of the change, welcome this change with open arms. Unless you feel good about it, it is not going to be any good.

So, chin up and nail it! Goodluck.

How to be true to yourself

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Our only obligation in life should be – being true to ourselves. Just as we cannot love anyone else until we love ourselves, we cannot be true to anyone else until we are true to ourselves.

So where can you begin doing this? Simple! By not being afraid to be who you are! It takes courage to be yourself everyday in a world that tells you to be someone else. You are born to be real and not perfect. You’re here to be you, not to be what someone else wants you to be. Never trade your authenticity for anybody’s approval.

As they say, “Do not change so people like you. Be yourself, sp the right people will love the real you.”

When you are being true to yourself, you are completely honest with how you feel, what you deeply value and what you earnestly desire. Also, it means communicating your feelings and thoughts to yourself and others by expressing your true nature. When you do things that you do not truly associate with, you will not be happy with yourself. Rather a feeling of confusion would engulf you. You ask confusion. Yes, confusion! Because, you won’t know whom to please and how to go about it.

When you have the courage to stand by yourself against all odds, acting in harmony with your true nature, you develop a sense of respect for yourself. When you respect yourself, others start respecting you automatically. It is like a cycle. If you don’t value yourself, why would others take the pain? Everybody around you starts seeing you as someone who is strong and can stand up for your own beliefs and values irrespective of anything or anyone.

When you are true to yourself, you allow your individuality and uniqueness to shine through. You respect the opinions of others but do not conform to stereotypes or their expectations of you. You just stand by your belief and value system because you know it is the right thing.

Here’s what people do when they are not being true to their own-self. Avoid these-

  • Avoid procrastination. When you put things off, you know you are being stupid. And no matter what, you will have to accomplish that thing. Stop trying to put things off unnecessarily unless important. Deep down you are aware of this wrong-doing. Give it up right away.
  • Avoid justifying your decisions. If you have to justify anything, undoubtedly, it is not the right decision. If you choose not to do something and feel no need to justify yourself for making that choice, then you are staying true to your own desires.
  • Avoid ignoring your intuition. Remember that stir in your gut when you do something which is not in accordance with your desire or value system? Yeah, that’s intuition! This feeling you’re receiving is a gift and, instead of ignoring it, you should acknowledge it, listen to it, and you’ll realise that it was a better choice.
  • Stop giving powers to set your mood to someone/something else. You do it when you want validation. This is a when you stop trusting yourself because if you put your trust in someone else, you don’t really stand to be responsible for your own life or happiness.
  • Stop laughing at jokes you don’t find funny. We all have faced this situation at least once in our life when we had to laugh at some joke just to be polite. In reality, we had found that joke rude and not in accordance with our values and beliefs. We weren’t true to ourselves in that moment. Being true would mean standing by our belief and letting that person know, “this isn’t funny.”
  • Stop breaking promises that you make to yourself. Even if it is a small promise like – eating a dessert tonight, just fulfil it. This turns into an unconscious habit and chronically affects us leading us into not being true to ourselves.

Promise yourself today! That you’ll be true to yourself, doesn’t matter if nobody likes you that way. You should like who you are, and that’s all what matters. Because as long as you are true to yourself, you’ll always find happiness.

Nothing better than this quote to sum it up-

“Be yourself. Because the ORIGINAL is worth more than a COPY.”

Habits that are stealing your happiness

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“Simply put, you believe that things or people make you unhappy, but this is not accurate. You make yourself unhappy.”

It really is very easy to become a happy person. And it is very easy to rob yourself of happiness as well. So, in this article I’m sharing some happiness robbing habits and will try to suggest a fix as well. Read on to find out.

 

  • Waiting for the right time.

When we have a big task lined, we wait for the ‘perfect’ time because we don’t want to fail in it and we want all the perfection in it too. So, we wait and wait and wait for the right time to come and to take necessary actions. Is the right ever coming? Maybe.

What to do?

 Take small steps. Don’t have to make a giant leap forward. Take small steps one-by-one. Just get going about it. Don’t worry about perfection because if you single-task it with full concentration, it is definitely going to be perfect, trust me. Don’t wait – just do it!

 

  • Taking criticisms way too seriously.

When someone criticises you it is natural to feel bad about it. But the blunder we do is, we start doubting ourselves and cursing ourselves for the rejection or failure.

What to do?

Rejections or failure are not about your inability in anything. Don’t blame yourself. Learn from your mistakes and move on. Don’t let criticism get to your heart and eat up your self esteem and self confidence. Take criticisms positively and make it a point to learn from them.

 

  • Comparing your life to life of others.

 Comparisons never yield happiness because comparisons yield envy. What anybody else is doing or owns should be none of your business. Everybody has a different life story.

What to do?

Focus on your own self. Compare yourself to yourself and nobody else. Promise yourself to be a better version of yourself tomorrow, better than yesterday,  better than today. Focus on improving yourself and all else will follow.

 

  • Not giving yourself moments of peace.

 Giving yourself no peace will make you drained of energy and monotonous. Excitement and enjoyment gets sucked out of your life.

What to do?

Take regular and sufficient breaks. Utilize your breaks efficiently. Give yourself break from the cluttering around. Meditate or go into your silent space in that time. Whatever makes you feel relaxed and recharged to work till another break. Breaks ensure productivity and efficiency in our work. Make sure to use them wisely.

 

  • Not trying anything new.

 Getting on with your daily routine and denying changes makes life dull. Without excitement, life is worth dragging and nothing else. Imagine doing the same thing every day for the rest of your life. Creepy!

What to do?

Change is a necessity for excitement in life. Also, changes help us explore our horizons. Trying out something new gives us the sense of achievement, which makes us happy. Unless we try out different sizes of a shirt, how are we going to find the perfect match! So go ahead and try.

 

These are some habits worth noting, because they are robbing us of our happiness, consciously or unconsciously. Do you have any other in your mind? Do share!

Habits for daily mindfulness

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“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”
                                                                                                                                                              -Buddha

One of the most misery-inviting habits is – not being in the present.

Meaning?

Body is right here, right now but thoughts are elsewhere in time and space. Thoughts are wandering in the past reliving an old happy memory or replaying an argument, for 1000th time- devising ways to win it.

Alternatively, your thoughts are wandering in the lanes of future, stressed out about what may happen at your work or in your relationship. The more time we spend in the past or the future, the more absent-minded presence we have.

It is ok to spend some time in the past, re-examining it or in the future, planning it. But the need to over-think everything and take control of every frigging thing while missing out in the present, is plain STUPID and worthless!

So, here are some habits that help to practice mindfulness all the time.

 

  • Calm down.

Start your day with a calm mind. Calm mind makes it easier and more natural to keep a slower pace and to focus fully on what you are doing for the rest of your morning. Calm minds are efficient and do not fall into the unnecessary loop of worry, sadness and anger.

Also, doing something with a calm and relaxed mind is the quickest and most efficient way to do something.

 

  • Remind yourself of the NOW.

When we are doing something, it is natural for us to phase out into some other situation without conscious agreement. To minimize this, develop a habit of gently reminding yourself of the NOW. Tell yourself “NOW I’m cooking” or “NOW I’m listening to music” etc.

Just reminding yourself of this repeatedly stops our mind from wandering and reloads our focus back to the task.

 

  • Stop and reconnect.

Whenever you catch your thoughts wandering somewhere else in the past or in the future, in your mind, shout – STOP!This works well in stopping the mind from unnecessary thinking and getting back to the present.

This way all the unwanted thoughts get disrupted. We disconnect from what is not required in the moment and successfully reconnect with the present.

 

You will notice increased efficiency and better focus if you practice mindfulness. These habits surely help. Try any of these for shot span of time and see for yourselves.

Energizing foods to eat after a morning run

 

It is an established fact that running drains us off energy. A good run in the morning is good for the health but proper nutrition is required thereafter to keep you going throughout the day. It sure does burn many calories but also leaves us tired. Since. there is no surety as to what should be eaten post a morning run. We are here to help. Here’s the list of some energizing foods that should be taken after a morning run for that boost of energy to last the entire day.

  1. Banana : Before, during, or after exercise. They’re great anytime! They are a good source of vitamin B6 and are vital for managing protein metabolism.
  2. Fruit salad : apples, oranges, blackberries, kiwis are excellent sources of antioxidants and vitamins.
  3. Almonds : Almonds are wonderful sources of the antioxidants. But don’t just take them alone for a breakfast. Just toss some almonds into oatmeal or milkshakes and you’re good to go.
  4. Cereals with milk : Most cereals are vitamin- and mineral-fortified, and they’re great with fresh fruit sliced on top. Absolutely great post a run!
  5. Oatmeal : It is an excellent dish for runners. It contains protein, fiber, & carbohydrates in excess.
  6. Greek yoghurt : It has proteins and should be eaten with fruits and some almonds for extra taste and boost of energy.
  7. Milk shakes : With plenty of protein, carbohydrates, and B vitamins it is perfect after a morning run and the calcium in milk also helps keep our bones strong.
  8. Cottage cheese : it is a brilliant food for muscle rebuilding and repair. Runners need this for muscle recovery.
  9. Smoothies : they are complete package of nutrients. With all the necessary nutrients, they are #1 when it comes to post running food. Plus, what can be better than a flavourful smoothie of your choice in the morning!
  10. Vegetable salad : vegetables are nature’s package of nutrients for us. Veggies like broccoli, beans, mushrooms, carrot when mixed in a salad are the best food for runners after a morning session.

A good run for you and a good food for your body- blessing in disguise. So what are you waiting for? Use this info and make a daily chart of your own. Include these in your diet post a run and see how the fatigue goes away like magic.

Thank us later! 😉

Failure : A stepping stone to success

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Thomas Edison was hearing impaired. His teachers found him ‘too stupid’ to learn anything. His mother home-schooled him. While talking about his invention of the bulb, he said, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that do not work.” 

Had Thomas Edison stopped trying after a few failures, would he be able to invent what he could? Ever wondered, what would have happened had he not taken his failures as lessons? Could he have done something historic like inventing a bulb, had he not worked relentlessly even after failing those many times?

The answer to the above mentioned questions is an obvious ‘NO’.

The stupidest mistake that we all do is – perceiving failure as the opposite of success, when it actually is a part of success. Failure actually is about all those times when we fall and refuse to get up. It is very humanly to get disheartened when we fail but there are ways we can overcome it effectively. Mentioned below are some strategies that help in overcoming failures-

  • Analyse what went wrong. Jot down points, which led the situation to move south. A critical analysis would help identify the point of failure. This way, it becomes easier to work on the weak points. You might fail many times, but that only means that you are eliminating mistakes one by one.
  • Challenge yourself. It is easier to fall apart when you fail. Many might even stop trying. However, giving up is never the solution! Each time you fail, challenge yourself to perform better the next time. Get up, gear up and try again. If not anything else, you will evolve into a better version of yourself!
  • Focus on the positives. When you are all broken because of the failure, thinking about the positives really helps in giving you motivation. Maybe you failed in this task, but you definitely have other things that you succeeded in! This really can boost your mood.
  • Vent it out. Try to talk it out with a friend or a confidant. As they say, “Sharing a joy means doubled joy. Sharing a sorrow means half a sorrow.”
  • Look at the worst case scenario. In some cases, the worst-case scenario may be genuinely disastrous, and it may be perfectly rational to fear failure. In other cases, however, this worst case may actually not be that bad, and recognizing this can help. Nothing can go worse than that, so go ahead, keep trying and success would be all yours.

 

Always remember, success doesn’t come to those who have never failed, but to those who never quit. You don’t fail until you quit trying!

Choose to succeed or choose to quit. Choice is yours!

Criticism and praise : Are they really different?

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If we succeed in something, people start attacking us. Self-motivation comes with the ability to developing a thick skin against all the criticism. But what is equally important, is the ability to not let praise consume us. Why? Because praise and criticism are actually two aspects of the same coin.

If you want to efficiently handle criticism, you should know how to handle praise effectively. If someone excessively praises you for a small victory, you should take it the same way you would take a hurtful insult. A person who is easily flattered is the person who is easily criticised also.

Steer your life, your own way. Don’t let distractions like flattery or criticism steer you away from your goals.

 

  • The problem with praise

If someone congratulates you, thank them whole-heartedly. Be cautious and don’t open yourself to over-confidence. Since praise and criticism are similar to each other, when we accept praise, we open ourselves to accepting criticism also.

A friend of mine scored exceptionally well in two of the mock tests meant for CAT. He scored a 100 percentile. Everyone around him went on praising him and his intellect. He fully absorbed the praise and became extremely confident by his performance.

However, at the main exam, he did not perform well, he was crushed. I feel his unguarded acceptance of all praise in the earlier victories led to this unwanted disaster. Internalizing praise can lower your motivation to work hard just as much as criticism. While some minor critiques encourage improvement, excessive flattery promotes laziness.

 

  • Stop caring what other people think of you

The solution, both to prevent the excesses of praise and the humiliation of criticism, is to stop caring what other people think of you. Take what is workable from their feedbacks and work on them. Neither the praises, nor the criticisms should steer the ship of your life.

If you get a criticism, don’t get disheartened. It is very humanly to get upset with criticisms but don’t let criticisms take a toll on you. Figure out what can be improved to nullify that criticism. This would help you otherwise also, in ruling out fake criticism or the criticisms which are only meant to mellow you down.

Similarly, work with praises. Figure out what good from the current victory can be used in your future works to ensure success. Don’t lament over criticisms or step on cloud nine over praises. The key is to not get distracted.

 

  • Start caring what you think of yourself

What is more important than praise or criticism is what you think of yourself. Start caring what you think of yourself, because you are the one that has to look in the mirror each day and face yourself. You are the only person that intimately understands your goals and values. You are the one who sets the goals in the first place. So, how can you expect other people, with different motives, to give you the ideal feedback to move forward?

Other people can offer great advice. But the emotional impact of praise and criticism should come from yourself. Other people can offer actionable suggestions, but they can’t be the judge of your self-worth.

 

  • Humble confidence in self

The ideal state of mind is humble confidence. You are humble, because you accept all feedback, searching for actionable suggestions, open to any opportunity. You are confident because you won’t allow emotional praise or criticism to distract you from your goals. If people praise you, thank them and focus on your goal. If people criticize you, thank them and focus on your goal. Because, in the end, you’re the one who has to judge yourself and live with it.

So, take criticism and praise in the right spirit and your life is all sorted! 😉