Dear Zindagi… my two cents

Dear Zindagi, a film made by Gauri Shinde, starring Alia Bhatt and Shah Rukh Khan has just released. It is a movie that has been liked by a number of people for a number of reasons – relatability, realness and good performances being a few. One thing that the movie has attempted to do is throw light on the area of counselling and therapy, which is what appealed most to me- it’s my profession, after all!! Showing that it is absolutely fine to seek help to deal with issues that may seem trivial, but could have deeper roots, is a step towards encouraging common man to resort to counselling without a feeling of shame or guilt. The layers uncovered through the sessions have also been showcased in a realistic way, and same goes with the level of professionalism, such as time-adherence etc.

The only thing I didn’t appreciate was the fact that the chair creaked at the end, which meant that SRK, although expressed detachment to the client due to ethics (thank the filmmakers for that!), did emotionally get affected by Alia. What the emotion was is something I choose not to debate about. As a psychologist who meets clients day-in and day-out, this wasn’t a REAL moment. Well, I guess the Bollywood touch had to come in somewhere.

Lastly, although it wasn’t said out blatantly in the film, I would want to tell you that there is a difference between a psychiatrist and a psychologist – the former prescribes medicines, the latter specializes in talk-therapy. A psychiatrist who provides counselling and therapy sessions has definitely undertaken additional training to be adept at doing so. I thought it is important to clarify, since I heard an RJ the other day reviewing the film, saying SRK plays a role of psychiatrist, whereas he himself says in the film that he is a psychologist. And the two are different!

To sum up, Dear Zindagi is a great attempt towards diffusing the taboo on therapy and counselling, which, no matter how much we deny, still does exist in the minds of a lot of people today in India.

9 Ways to Master the Skill of Overcoming Laziness

overcoming-lazinessLaziness is something that we all relate to. While many of us tend to feel lazy a lot of times, even the most disciplined and active person does have his/her moments of laziness, where they may just not feel like doing anything.

It is not such a bad idea to laze around at times. However, it can get challenging if we end up doing at the cost of our responsibilities and obligations.

Overcoming laziness is a skill everyone can learn and master. These tips will tell you how:

  1. End-result orientation: Many a times, the process of performing a particular task makes us feel bored and lazy. The more we think about the task, the lazier we feel. However, the idea of seeing the result upon successful completion of the task can be both motivating and satisfying. E.g. cleaning the house may seem boring, but the idea of a neat and tidy house makes us feel good.
  1. Work for just 10 minutes. Most of us who tend to feel lazy usually experience the ‘starting problem’. However, once we get into the groove, we usually pull it off right until the end. So, just tell yourself that you can give up after 10 minutes. Even if you decide to give it up, you have done at least some part of it.
  1. Advantages of completing the task now. List down and remind yourself of the advantages of completing the task right away. E.g. you will get done with it, and will therefore be left with more free time, you will not be bothered about this one task, and can therefore focus on other work, etc. this will make it easier to convince yourself to carry out the task right away.

  2. Disadvantages of delaying the task. This point focuses on motivating yourself to perform the task by reminding yourself of the things that are at stake, or the challenges that you may have to face by putting the work away for another time. Make a big list of everything that could go wrong if you continue to be lazy.

5. Consequences faced in the past. It is quite likely that you may have faced unpleasant consequences because you put away your work on account of boredom and laziness. Remind yourself of these instances. Remember that pain and use it as a driving force.

6. Goals to look forward to. If you feel lazy on a regular basis, maybe your goals aren’t exciting enough. Relook and set goals that keep you on your toes. This motivation will keep laziness at bay.

7. Small and achievable steps. Big tasks can be intimidating and overwhelming. By breaking the big task into smaller tasks, you will take small but definite steps to accomplish it, and therefore not feel bored to work on it.

8. Self-talk. Tell yourself how great it will be to check off the pending tasks on your to-do list. Counter the negative thoughts by repeating positive self-talk statements, such as, ‘I am going to feel so good and relieved once I complete all these tasks’, ‘It is really not such a big deal to complete these tasks if I take them up one after the other’, etc. You will automatically feel the positive energy and motivation.

  1. List of activities for rejuvenation. When you do not have a plan to get out of your laziness and boredom, then you might end up spending hours or even days not feeling motivated and inspired. On the other hand, if you have a list of activities that make you feel relaxed, rejuvenated and happy, your mind is convinced that you have overcome the feeling of laziness, and are now ready to take on the task, full force. Some of these activities include taking a nap, going for a brisk walk, chatting with a friend, etc.

Overcoming the urge to be lazy is a useful life skill that can provide meaningful benefits. Let lazing around be a choice, and not an evil demon that comes in the way of your success. Apply some or all of the techniques listed above to deal effectively with that laziness, that you have been struggling to deal with all this while.

If you wish to get clarity on your goals, and work better on the obstacles coming in the way of your success, I’m just one message away. Drop me a message on LinkedIn, or email me directly on refindyou@gmail.com, and we can schedule a coaching session of 45 minutes, absolutely FREE.

This New Year, gift yourself Coaching

Gift-to-self

Hi there,

As we are two weeks into the new year, I’m sure you have overcome your hangover of the new year parties and started settling into your routine. I hope you have also taken time out to contemplate on your goals for 2016, some new, some unfinished and some to be refurbished since you last set out to achieve them.

There’s one gift you can give yourself this new year, and that is coaching. This is because coaching is THE MOST EFFECTIVE way to work closely with someone who’s goal is to see you accomplish your goals.

The coaching process:

Coaching, described in a nutshell, is a 5-step process, which involves:

  • Setting goals,
  • Identifying obstacles that come in the way of achieving these goals,
  • Creating a plan to overcome these obstacles,
  • Executing the plan and achieving the goals,
  • Celebrating success!

The different areas of life where coaching can help you are:

  • Job (e.g. team management, getting recognition)
  • Career (e.g. making a career transition, identifying the right stream)
  • Business (e.g. Starting a business, growing a start-up to the next level)
  • Relationships (e.g. happier marriage, finding the right match)
  • Wellness (e.g. losing weight, managing stress)
  • Self-development (e.g. emotional intelligence, time management)
  • Spirituality (e.g. finding peace and happiness, understanding the greater purpose of life)

The role of the coach:

The coach plays the role of your ally and accountability partner, who celebrates your success, supports you during challenging times and motivates you to push yourself.

A lot of times, the argument that people give is that they do not need a coach, and that they can achieve their goals by themselves. This is definitely possible. However, the reason why working with a coach is a more effective option is because the hustle-bustle of daily life leaves us with either no time, or no energy, or no inclination to work on our dreams, aspirations and goals. The end result? Another year goes past without giving due consideration, thought and action to something that is so important to us.

It’s time to get started!

It’s time to break the monotony this time. Sign up for coaching. This is a gift you deserve. It is one of the rare gifts that is also an investment! 🙂 There are a number of expert coaches out there, waiting to support you in achieving your goals. All you need to do is tell yourself that it is time for you to begin the change process. A beautiful life awaits you.

If you wish to sign up for a free 45 minute coaching session with me, just drop in a comment or email me directly at refindyou@gmail.com.  By the end of the free session, you will definitely have clarity on your goals and the way ahead! And that is better that not starting at all, right?!

So, here’s wishing you an amazing 2016. May you get started and accomplish all that you wish to achieve and much more!

Is it a good idea to look back into our past?

rearview-mirror

 

We often hear learned people saying, “The past is gone, and cannot be undone. Therefore, it is no point thinking about it and wasting time.” While living in the present is the ideal way to be, it is not such a bad idea to look back at the past. Here are four reasons:

1. It helps us learn from our experiences

When we are in the moment, we may be impulsive and emotional. Once the situation is over and done with, we are better equipped to analyse what we did, and how we could have acted in a better way.

  2. It helps us track our progress

Progress means forward or onward movement towards a destination. In order to be able to track progress, there has to be a starting point against which comparisons can be drawn. This starting point is available only in the past. Looking back helps us identify not just how far we have come, but also the pace at which we have made progress.

3. It helps us stay on track

We all have goals that we wish to achieve and dreams that we wish to accomplish. In our day-to-day life struggles, we might find it difficult to stay focused on our goals. When we look back at the past, we can see what has been amiss, and take corrective action so that we can stay on track. This will help us be more objective about reaching our goals.

4. It helps us identify our beliefs and thought patterns, and make necessary changes and modifications

A pattern is defined as a repetition of a design or form. Speaking of behaviour, a pattern is construed as a recurrent way of acting by an individual towards another individual, object or situation. For us to be able to identify any pattern, it is inevitable that we look into the past. Only then is it possible to see a consistent repetition. Thus, patterns of thoughts and behaviours that are helpful can be strengthened and those that are harmful can be broken, only by looking into the past.

It is said very correctly that we can do wonders if we use our past as our teacher, and not as our guide into the future. The latter would mean driving a car forward by only looking into the rear view mirror. However, looking into the rear view mirror once in a while helps us ensure that we are driving safe, and protect us from hindrances like sudden speeding vehicles.

So, let’s remember, revisit and rejoice our past, not regret it!

10 techniques to stay Self-Motivated

group_of_happy_women_jump_on_the_beach_1340025876.jpgWe all like to be motivated, as that brings out the best in us. However, it is important that we master the art of self-motivation, since it is not always possible to get motivation from external sources. Motivating yourself is a learnable skill. Here are ten techniques to help you motivate yourself.

Try these techniques to motivate yourself and get things done:

  1. Choose to be happy

Have you ever experienced days when you do not mind doing mundane and boring tasks just because you feel happy?! Happiness takes us into a space where we feel positive and motivated, and are willing to go that extra mile to achieve our goals. By focusing on the positives in any situation, and by being grateful for the positives, you can choose to be happy in any given situation.

  1. Learn how to take a task to completion., without giving up midway

A heap of unfinished projects can dampen anyone’s enthusiasm to start another. Avoid quitting or moving on to another project before a task is 100% completed. In case of a contingency, make sure you come back to the task at hand after addressing the emergency. You will be more interested in taking on new tasks when you know that you can successfully complete them.

  1. Be prepared for mistakes

As a human being, it is only normal to make mistakes. Making mistakes is a part of the learning process. The only people that do not make mistakes are those who never do anything. Mistakes can be very positive, teaching valuable lessons. Use them to your advantage.

  1. Stay focused on the present

Irrespective of whether you are anxious about the future or regretful of the past, living the present moment successfully is definitely a challenge, because the focus is not on what is to be done NOW. Focus on your breath and distract yourself for a few minutes, if your become aware of your mind running into the past or future.

  1. Be outcome-focused

You may feel frustrated or overwhelmed when you look at the volume of work to be completed. It may in fact not allow you to even start off with the work in the first place. When you focus on the end-result, you will feel energized and enthused to work towards achieving it.

  1. Give yourself a reward

Rewards can act as great motivators if they are relevant, desirable and determined before setting out to work on the goals. You go to work every day because you know that a paycheck is coming your way. You wouldn’t go otherwise. Similarly, give yourself a small, but meaningful, reward when you complete your tasks.

  1. Use a timer

Decide beforehand how long a task should take and see if you are able to stick to that timeline. Set a timer and see if you can beat the clock. A little time pressure will help to keep you focused on your work. It is also like a little game that you play with mind to keep it excited. There are many timer apps and programs available at no cost.

  1. Start your day on a positive note

You can either read inspirational quotes by those who have achieved great success, or create positive sentences that you would like to say to yourself. Whichever the case, you can be sure of starting your day with a bang if you begin it with inspiration and enthusiasm.

  1. Get some exercise

If you feel stuck with a particular problem, go for a brisk walk or a short run. Studies show that taking a short break every 60 minutes increases productivity. Keep your breaks short so you don’t get off track.

  1. Measure your progress

Big goals or projects can takes years to complete. Measuring your progress along the way is a great way to keep your spirits high. Set short-term goals to keep you focused.

The most successful people are able to harness the power of self-motivation. A higher level of motivation will ensure that your work is done well and as quickly as possible. It’s time to get busy!

If you wish to work towards achieving your goals and believe that you would benefit from hiring a coach, I would be happy to work with you. As a certified Success Coach and Counselling Psychologist, I can help you set a clear vision of where you would like to be and work with you to get you there. If you wish to avail a complimentary session of 45 minutes absolutely free, email me directly on refindyou@gmail.com.

4 Key Attitudes for a Happy Life

happy_wallpaper_3-wideIt’s ironical that though the ultimate goal that everyone seeks to achieve is happiness, not everyone has aligned themselves to being happy. Here are four attitudes that play a pivotal role in ensuring that you lead a happier and more fulfilling life.

Attitude 1: Having a positive approach to situations, and life in general

People often argue that having a positive approach may lead to denial of reality and therefore impede growth. However, a positive approach does not necessarily mean not accepting one’s flaws. On the other hand, a positive approach ensures that we are confident to work on ourselves, and achieve the goals that are important for us. Although you’ll have difficult times, there’s usually a positive outcome or lesson to be learned.

Make an effort to focus on the positive aspects of a situation. It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to change what happened, but you can definitely decide how to respond.

Positive thinking gives you confidence to go after your goals. Consider the times when you’ve doubted your ability to do something, as against those when you decide to give it your best shot. When do you succeed? When you focus on positivity, you attract more positivity into your life!

Attitude 2: Having the attitude of gratitude

It’s sometimes easy to overlook the blessings in your life. Negative circumstances can cloud your vision. But when you possess an “attitude of gratitude,” you’ll find that happiness helps you sail through the sad days.

Even when a situation has a less than favorable outcome, it is within our control to avoid sulking about it. Instead, we can be grateful for the lesson that the situation has taught us.

Make time during your day to focus on the things that you are thankful for. When that session ends, you will have a greater sense of relief, because you realize and accept that you are truly blessed. A grateful attitude helps you be satisfied with what you have, rather than wanting to live the life of someone else, who, in your eyes, is more fortunate.

Attitude 3: Having the attitude of kindness and politeness  

Read on to know why two seemingly different attitudes have been clubbed into one.

Many of us misunderstand kindness. True kindness is often experienced when you share something you have with someone, who may even not be known to you. How many times have you been truly kind today? You’ll recognize true kindness from the warmth you feel inside after sharing something material, or even a kind word.

Being polite is often considered as a sign of weakness. The reality is that it is an indicator of the respect you show to another person. There may be times, such as at work, where you may not be able to be kind to a subordinate, because that is the nature of your work. However, you can still be polite. Being firm yet polite is the sign of assertiveness.

When you interact with others with the attitude of kindness and politeness, you allow yourself to live life devoid of anger. And happiness thrives in the absence of anger.

Attitude 4: Having the attitude of forgiveness   

I often hear my clients say, “I can never forgive others for what they have done to me. I may be polite superficially, but deep down inside, they have lost my respect for them”. It’s easy to let feelings of hurt and anger affect your desire to forgive others. But, who is the one suffering? It is none other than you, yourself! It may not even make a difference to the opposite person. For you, it is your peace of mind at stake. When you forgive, you trade pain for peace. That peace leads to happiness.

These key attitudes to living a happy life seem simple enough. Try practicing them one at a time until you are comfortably happy with your progress. Eventually, you’ll be able to experience the kind of happiness you thought only existed in ideal situations, and not in real life!

If you have trouble practicing the above tips, or have been encountering situations that are too overwhelming for you to handle, we can work together to help you clear the clutter, define your life goals and work towards them. I will be delighted to offer you a complimentary first coaching session of 45 minutes. All you need to do is email me directly on refindyou@gmail.com.

Hope you enjoyed reading the post. Wish you all the best for a happy life ahead!

Why are we so afraid of making mistakes?

mistakeAre you one of the thousands out there who stop themselves from living freely because they are always living in fear…? …Fear of making mistakes is so common! Some are aware of this tendency, while some aren’t, but unconsciously get anxious when they anticipate that they may end up making a mistake.

Since making mistakes is a natural part of life, I thought it would be a good idea to publish this post, in an attempt to bridge the gap.

Top 5 reasons why people are afraid to make mistakes:

  1. Upbringing

Since childhood, whether or not we are rewarded for things that we do right or ‘correctly’, more often than not, we have been scolded t or punished for making mistakes, whether it is about making a silly calculation error in math, or leaving a book behind at a friend’s place… Therefore, we have hardwired our brain to think that it is ‘terrible’ to make mistakes

  1. Fear of rejection

Many of us dread being rejected, or ridiculed or mocked at. It is so important for us to be accepted by our loved ones, that we always want to come across as correct, and perfect, to them. We believe that if we make mistakes, it will tarnish our reputation. Therefore, even in the worst case scenario, where we end up making a mistake, we are always prepared to blame an external variable for it.

  1. Fear of the unknown

Many times, we do not know what will happen if we make a mistake. We imagine that the consequences would be earth-shattering, and we are so petrified by the imagined scenario that we absolutely dread making the mistake.

  1. The right-wrong debate

Being right is often overrated by people around us, and the society at large. The need to walk right, sit right, speak right, do things right, has been reinforced endlessly. The reactions, both verbally and non-verbally, towards those who might perhaps trip, or clumsily drop things, or forget to pay the light bill, are often not very pleasant. People therefore do not want to be at the receiving end of such reaction, and therefore choose not to make mistakes at all in the first place.

  1. Disappointment in oneself

Many a times, we set unrealistic standards for ourselves. By making mistakes, we look small in our own eyes. In order to live up to self-created expectations, we become afraid to falter.

Is it possible to overcome this fear? Yes, it is. A lot of my clients have worked on their fear of making mistakes, and are now comfortable with themselves, accepting the fact that mistakes are very much a part of each of our lives.

Here are some quick tips on how to overcome this fear of making mistakes…

  • Changing our perception of making mistakes from being a disastrous offence to a learning experience

At the end of the day, a mistake is just an alternative way of doing something. Let’s take the example of driving in a new city. It is pretty much possible that you miss a lane, because you weren’t clear with the instructions on Google maps. However, at the end of the experience, you might have stumbled upon a shortcut. Therefore, a mistake is not a disaster. It is a learning experience, which mostly teaches us how not to do things.

  • Telling yourself, “it is not the end of the world if I make a mistake”

Most of the times, in fact, all of the times, it is not the situation, but what I am telling myself about the situation, that results in my final experience. Therefore, if I start swearing at myself each time I make a mistake, I will dread mistakes not because of the mistake by itself, but because of my reaction to it. However, if I bring about a shift in my self-talk, and tell myself, ‘it’s ok buddy.. it happens! It’s not such a big deal’. Over time, I will be able take mistake as a part and parcel of life.

  • Asking yourself, “Have I never ever made a mistake?”

How much ever you may wish to live in denial, it is practically impossible for you to have not committed a single mistake in your life, EVER. If it were such a terrible thing, you wouldn’t have survived. However, the fact that you have survived, are functioning well, and mean well for yourself (because of which you are even reading this article J), shows that it really isn’t such a horrible thing, after all!

  • Evaluating whether people around you have ever made a mistake

We often get overwhelmed by our circumstances. However, when we observe people around, especially those who are generally happy and content with themselves, we may at first think that their life is perfect. However, on interacting with them, or by observing closely, we notice that it is not their perfect life, but their acceptance of their imperfections, that allows them to be happy and content.

Benefits of making mistakes:

That’s true. Making mistakes do have their share of benefit. They are:

1) You become wiser!

2) You have hands-on experience, and therefore know how it is to make mistakes and come out strong.

3) You become more aware and accepting of yourself, and discover new aspects of your personality

4) You realize that mistakes are as much a part of our life as anything else. And that it is absolutely normal.

5) You enjoy enhanced relationships with your loved ones, because you are not harsh with anyone that makes mistakes.

I truly believe that each one of us is rapidly moving on the path of growth, progress and success. We often come across roadblocks, or speed-breakers, which may dampen our spirits. However, life is meant to be celebrated, and not fret over split milk. As a Success Coach, I can help you speed up your momentum to achieve your goals, whether they are pertaining to finance, relationships, health or spirituality. Why not sign up for a FREE 45 minute consultation and see whether you get value?

Just  write to me on refindyou@gmail.com. I’ll be happy to offer my 45 minute first consultation, absolutely free!

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Assertiveness – a choice for an effective way of life

Assertiveness is a choice. However, not everyone knows the exact meaning of assertiveness, as it is often misunderstood with aggression. So  here’s a peek into assertiveness.

Assertiveness is the quality of being self-assured and confident without being aggressive. It is the ability to stand up for oneself and one’s needs, without disregarding the needs of others. It is the ability to respect oneself and others. As you go through this article, you will discover the characteristics of assertiveness, its benefits and tips to get started.

Characteristics of Aggressive v/s Submissive v/s Assertive behaviours:

Here are some of the basic differences between aggressive, submissive and assertive behaviours.

Aggressive Submissive Assertive
Interrupts and ‘talks over’ others Is afraid to speak up Speaks openly
Speaks loudly Speaks softly Uses a conversational tone
Glares and stares at others Avoids looking at people Makes good eye contact
Intimidates others with expressions Shows little or no expression Shows expressions that match the message
Only considers own feelings Always agrees with others Communicates his view
Controls groups Isolates self from groups Participates in groups
Values self more than others Values self less than others Values self equal to others

Benefits of Assertive behaviour

The biggest motivation to change is knowing what’s in it for me! Here’s what in store for you if you choose the path of assertiveness:

  • You become more effective
  • You are able to stand up for yourself
  • Increased confidence
  • Decreased anxiety and stress
  • Enhanced relationships
  • Better self image (your view of yourself)

Barriers to assertiveness:

While there are several benefits of being assertive, it is not always easy to behave assertively. Some of the barriers that come in the way of assertiveness are:

Social pressures – Society does not appreciate people who openly communicate their views, opinions and needs.

Parental and family pressures – Parents and family members expect the rules and traditions to be followed, and assertiveness is often perceived by them as rebellion.

Self-induced pressures – Our need for acceptance by others, need to be loved and approved often is the greatest barrier to assertiveness. We often do not voice our thoughts openly because of the fear of rejection by someone, and the need for being in their good books always. The moment we are able to bring a shift in our thought process, we will be able to embark on our journey to being assertive.

Tips to practise assertive behaviour:

  • Start with less intense situations

Being able to confront colleagues and superiors in the conference room or discuss infidelity related issues with spouse may be a rather huge jump in practising assertiveness. Since we may not be equipped with the poise and experience, we might not be able to handle such intense situations assertively. As a consequence, we might end up messing the situation furthermore. Therefore, it makes better sense to start with situations such as requesting a table change at a restaurant, exchanging clothes at a mall, etc. By taking smaller steps, we will be gain confidence to behave assertively, and we can then move towards more intense situations.

  • Begin saying ‘No’

 One of the greatest misconceptions is that saying a no means that we are being selfish. IT really is not the case. We are saying no only because we may have other priorities at that point of time. Mind you, even relaxation might be a priority after a tiring day at work. Therefore, the next time you wish to say no to a friend who is insisting that you meet up for coffee, go right ahead and say so, guilt free.

  • Learn to accept a ‘No’

It is as important to accept a ‘No’ from others as it is to say a no, when the situation so demands. Just like us, even others have the right to decide their priorities, and equating a ‘No’ with our rejection is an exaggeration that only affects us negatively. Understand and accept that the ‘No’ could be the need of the hour, and for the request that you have made. That is about it.

  • Remind yourself every day that you choose to be assertive, for your sake

While it would be an ideal scenario to be able to be assertive at all times, let’s face it, it may not be possible. One of the main reasons is our behavioural pattern. We are usually so accustomed to behaving in a particular way that a change is often challenging. Therefore, it is important that we remind ourselves, several times during the day that we choose to be assertive, because that is good for us. And we choose to focus on the greater good, than merely pleasing people.

  • Access resources on assertiveness

There is a plethora of books, articles, videos, blogs and other material on assertiveness available on the internet, libraries etc. Keep accessing these regularly, so that you stay tuned until such time that assertiveness becomes a way of life for you.

Assertiveness is a sure-shot way to a more effective way of living. However, it is a challenging path, and requires constant awareness and motivation to stay on track. As a Success Coach, I will be happy to be your ally and accountability path, and walk with you on your path towards assertiveness, ensuring that you celebrate little milestones achieved and do not get bogged down by temporary let-downs. If you wish to sign up with me for assertiveness coaching, just drop me a mail on refindyou@gmail.com. I will be happy to hear from you!

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Speedy self-growth is just 6 questions away…

Self-growth is often the most spoken about, but personally the most neglected aspect, due to various reasons, the most common being lack of time. However, if we can take some time out and invest in understanding ourselves better, the ROI is going to be unbelievably high. If you have been wanting to start this journey within, but have been struggling to get to a starting point, begin by asking yourself the following six questions:

Q 1: If I have to think of one most important skill that I lack, what would it be?  

We all have strengths and weaknesses. While some of us are able to deal with our weaknesses, some others find them so overwhelming that it impedes success. For example, you may excellent with documentation, but speaking to new people may cause jitters, which limits your visibility and growth. You may lack the creativity required to excel at your role, or so you may think. Ponder a while and identify that one skill that you really wish to work on. The mere realization will make you feel better.

Q 2: What are my greatest strengths?

Make a list of your greatest strengths. The list will be motivating enough for you to propel towards growth and success. Our weaknesses might hold us back, but our strengths can determine how high we can rise. Weaknesses are like a boat anchor while strengths are like the motor. You can also get feedback from your near and dear ones.

Q 3: Do I come in the way of my own success?

Unknowingly, we may be indulging in critical and destructive self-talk, and garnering fears that stop us from realizing our true potential. For example, while all of us yearn for success, we often fear the change that comes with it. We therefore prefer staying in our comfort zone, and continue wishing for success.

Q 4: If I could go back in time and undo an action, what would that be?

The idea here is not to regret, but look back into our past and identify any behaviours, habits or beliefs that we have adopted in our early life that have become an ingrained pattern, which hampers our progress. When we look at our lives in retrospect, we may be able to point out and thereby make necessary changes in the patterns, so that we better ourselves.

Q 5: Whom or what do I blame for my shortcomings?

You may not have had the ideal childhood, and may not have had a guide to help you distinguish right from wrong, but you are what you are because you are the author of your life. Regardless of the gravity of the situations in your life, it is your responsibility to deal with them. This knowledge is actually great news because now you see that you don’t have to rely on someone else in order to move forward!

Q 6: What do I wish to see written as my epitaph?

An epitaph is the inscription on the tombstone. What would you like to be known for? Complete the following line… Here lies (your name) who ____________________________. This will help you set an overall life goal and work towards it. Are you currently living in a manner that supports that vision?

Questions are a useful tool. The answers can give you greater insight and clarity. If you’re feeling lost or frustrated, utilize the power of questions to continue your self-growth journey.

You are, and will always be, in charge of your life. So navigate your way towards your goals, and enjoy the sweet taste of success.

If you find it challenging to seek answers to the above questions, or require further help in dealing with the answers, I will be happy to help you. I am a certified Success Coach, and my passion is to work with individuals to help them achieve their goals and aspirations. Just send me an email me directly on refindyou@gmail.com, and we can schedule one coaching session of 60 minutes, absolutely free!

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Happy Mental Health to you! promoting positive mental health

Did you chuckle and say to yourself, ‘I’m not a mental case,’ when you read the heading of this post? Chances are that you did. Unfortunately, we colloquially equate ‘mental’ with being mentally ill. However, this is far from the truth. Mental means ‘of the mind’. Therefore, mental health means health of the mind.

Today, 10th October, is celebrated worldwide as Mental Health Day.

Mental Health is much more than the absence of any mental illness. As per the definition of WHO, it is a state of psychological well-being in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.

Mental Ill Health v/s Mental Illness

Mental ill health and mental illness can be viewed on a continuum, wherein mental ill health constitutes general mental health problems, usually temporary in nature, which we can all experience in certain stressful circumstances. Mental illness, on the other hand, involves severe and distressing psychological symptoms to the extent that normal functioning is seriously impaired.

Stress = Mental ill health

Stress is one of the biggest impediments to mental health and wellbeing. And the fact of life is that stress cannot be avoided. So long as we are alive and operating in different areas of life, namely work, home, society, we are bound to encounter stressors. However, we can definitely prepare ourselves to deal with stressful situations without getting bogged down or overwhelmed. And we can choose to face stress and nip it in the bud too…

Dealing with stress:

Here are some quick tips to deal with stress:

  • Reduce your stress load – learn to be assertive and say a ‘No’
  • Develop a good support system, which includes family and friends
  • Break the stress cycle with relaxation
  • Get regular, moderate exercise
  • Practice deep breathing
  • Learn to forgive and forget. The only person getting affected by grudges is you.
  • Don’t be hard on yourself. It’s perfectly human to be imperfect. We can always learn from our mistakes and not repeat them.
  • Take care of yourself – nourish yourself with good food and gift yourself adequate sleep
  • Live one day at a time
  • Be optimistic
  • Get professional help when needed

If you are finding it difficult to deal with the stress in your life, it is normal. You can engage with a coach and undergo a stress management program. If you would like to schedule a free session with me, I would be glad to help. All you need to do is write to me directly on refindyou@gmail.com.

Wish you the best mental health and wellness!