Grief stages to again #keepsmiling?

Like it or not, we all go through unexpected, painful, catastrophic events in our lives. Loss of a loved one, failure at something we are passionate about, accidents of self or a loved one, and many more such events might lead us to ‘grief’. David Kessler, a grief researcher, has said on that there is “no typical response as there is no typical loss”. However, he, along with Elisabeth Kubbler Ross, interviewed many people and found these given stages to be very common. Identifying one’s own stage can help them to deal with grief. And get back to #keepsmiling

The emotions anyone feels are real and we must understand that we cannot push it under the carpet. We must go ‘through’ it. We must also note that different people can have different timelines for every stage.

Denial is the first stage where everything becomes meaningless and we sometimes want to end it immediately. It is a general defense mechanism where we are not ready to accept what has happened. “How can it happen?”, “This is not happening”, “I can’t believe it.”

Anger is the next stage. As the reality begins to become visible, the pain of this reality also becomes real. This anger might be towards things, people, God, or anything of that sort. It might even be towards the person who passed away or the doctor who diagnosed of the deadly disease.

Bargaining comes next when the grieving person begins to talk with phrase, “If only I would have done…”! This is the person’s attempt at getting back control of the situation. They might even bargain with God for a different outcome in exchange of something they have never done but would now.

Then comes Depression with worries about how things will be done. This is also a natural state and we must allow it to walk up to the person. Here we think about how we did not do enough for the person gone or how are we going to manage the expenses. Sometimes people might also feel some aches and or loss of appetite.

And last is the Acceptance stage where we are finally able to let it settle down. We now understand that ‘what has happened has‘, and there’s not much that can be done about it. But that they must look forward to live the life that awaits. This stage might repeat for a long long time as the person could swing back and forth from here by sometimes feeling angry or sad, and then again being able to accept whatever happened. The sooner we can reach this stage the better it will be!

Everyone goes through these stages and awareness is the first step to deal with any of it so that, no matter what happens, we all can forever #keepsmiling.😄

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What matters in life – 3?

Part 1

Part 2

During this phase of lockdown, I am sure we have all realized a few important aspects of our lives that we had never paid attention to. Like, maybe some of our family members and friends, some activities we wanted to but never actually did, some habits we always dreamt of having but had never put these to practice. We also get to know the difference between what we definitely need and other things.

I was specially waiting for a barber shop to open up again. More so, sweepers, nurses, barbers, cooks, and all such workers were the ones we were looking upto! Other such people who have made our lives easier during these times are the police personnel, mental health professionals, social workers, and many others whose jobs were never seen as important.

The difficulties were felt when the above mentioned people were unavailable. Majority of us were not waiting for malls to open or the big fashion styles to come to us. Instead, we just wanted the ultimate necessities to be available.

Isn’t it time we started thinking differently? Or think this too?

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What matters in life – 2?

My previous post began talking about the topic.

We all have different needs at different points of time and we all are motivated to fulfill those needs. Abraham Maslow wrote about those in 50s and has been the most discussed theories in the world of business and psychology…also in philosophy and spirituality. I have also mentioned it in this post in some detail. But if you wish to do further research, this is a good place to begin.

This is all good and important! And I too am there. However, I have realized that while heading towards the bigger things we often miss out on the smaller stuffs… the people around us… the colourful sky… the smiles… the nice smell of flowers… the fun times with our families… and everything that helps to create more smiles and more joyful moments ❤️.

And if it is so, should we be doing all that we are? Can we rethink?

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What matters in life?

I have been curious for more than two decades asking myself, “What is important for a human being?”, “Is happiness important”, “What brings happiness?”, “Can anyone not have everything but still be happy?” Or worse, “Can anyone be in pain but still be happy?”, “How can anyone KEEPSMILING?”

Jim Carrey, one of the most famous Hollywood actors says, “I think that everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer”. Although he has not mentioned the question anywhere we all have the understanding of the kind of questions he is talking of – the existential questions! Questions, a few of which I have asked above.

It usually starts with our attempts to be famous, rich, achiever, etc in all areas of our lives, hoping that these are what will make us happy, fulfilled but sadly, they don’t! And we get so much attached to the things/stuffs we have collected that we are unable to stop even.

No, it’s not even our fault as from the childhood we have been trained to think like that! And not even our parents’, because they too have been trained for the same. And their parents too! And so on, it’s with almost everyone.

They were more keen on the position, or salary offered to any individual. And if it’s not BIG, the person has not done anything.

But how much do those things really matter? Let’s discuss this through my future posts!

Till then, #keepsmiling

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Shouldn’t we start conversations in this way? We will send out more positivity in the universe!

Positive thoughts do make an impact upon us, individually, and over our culture as well! It’s better to have positive thoughts rather than the opposite ones. Even if you don’t believe that positive thoughts can make a difference this could be helpful. A simple starter, asking to tell one thing that made them feel better instead of the old how are you can change the level of interaction. Read further…

The moment you meet someone or text someone, it starts with one of these: “Hey, how are you?”, “What’s up?”, “What’s going on?”, “Good to see you, what’s happening?”, “How’s life?”, etc.

I am sure you have asked the above questions innumerable times from your colleagues, family members and whoever you would have met. No doubt, you would have also answered these questions similar number of times!

In my experience people answer it with, “Nothing, just all regular stuff” or “All good bro, what about you?”, “Hmm all good man”, etc. Have you heard of anyone describing the difficulty they’ve been facing? Almost never!

When one asks these above questions, are they really interested in knowing about how the person is doing? Mostly not, they just need to start off!

However, think about it, did you reeeally get to know ANY BIT about the person?

Icebreakers? Really? Even if we consider these as the breakers, how useful are they? And can’t we ever change these?

Let’s consider for a minute that WE CAN CHANGE!

Now, what if we start asking, “What’s the one thing that made you feel very good today?” Here you got them thinking – about all good things that they experienced. All kinds of interactions, all events start running in their minds…all that brought them feelings of joy, comfort, happiness, fulfilment, and so on! Probably you brought a smile on their face. And there’s something to talk about.

As they answer, you get to know one additional fact about the person. Won’t this kind of conversation improve the connection people have among each other?

And let me tell you a few responses that I have been getting! “Reviewed a long pending article” shows the person has been involved in some writing work lately! Another went, “the famous dancer I follow on Instagram responded to my message” showing they’re interested in dancing, “I did pranayama after a long time”, “I spoke to my parents through video call for the first time”, “I woke up early at 8:30…” And so on…! In each of these responses do you see how you are getting to know something more about the person and about what is important to them?

Aren’t these responses better at helping you build a more personal connection with the other person? Can you imagine a world where everyone is getting to know everyone else on a deeper level? And all interactions are fruitful not only from “business” point of view but “personal connection” point too?

But again, the rule should be that you can’t judge their answer… like you don’t judge when the person answers, how are you with a “all good”! You may ask further questions, preferably closed ended ones to just carry forward the interaction. Like if the person says that the best thing happening to them was that they had a good cup of hot tea, you may ask the question, “Aha! Which brand coffee do you enjoy!” Or, “Did you have the coffee with others in the family or just alone” and then again next question could follow! You cannot say, “How can having coffee be a big thing?” Or “How can waking up at 10 be a great thing?” It’s not about how you feel about the act but how the other person feels!

Now, do you see how just one question is enabling a more productive and positive conversation?

Yes, like any other change, it will be slightly ‘awkward’ to move from the previous style but let’s get ready for it and make an effort everyday! 😊

A positive start can take any discussion to a great finish. And much more. What is your thought? Please share in the comments section below!

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A quote in the book Project Liberation

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Saw this quote on a t-shirt

Do you like this? #keepsmiling

And am planning to get it!

Isn’t it true? Be it you have five degrees, five times the richest person’s richness, or the fame of the ultimate celebrity.

If it is not worth for you personally, stop doing it. Because nobody else cares!!! #keepsmiling

Take care of your health to #keepsmiling

A few days ago, we had a nutrition expert visit our organisation. She asked us about our diet and gave a few suggestions accordingly, to improve our health.

And, although I knew it from early on, I re-realized how important is a proper diet if you want to #keepsmiling. Yes, I do agree that mental health can have a stronger impact on our lives. However, I do also vouch for the fact that we should take care of our food habits to improve the overall quality of life we have.

In general, we need protein as many grams as our weight in kg. We also need a decent carb content along with fibre and fat. Fibre enables better digestion and fat provides residual energy. It also acts as a cushion for the cells and thus protects them. Similarly, there are a lot more nutrients required in small quantities.

My dear friends, the post is just another reminder that almost everything, including health, has to be taken care of in order to #keepsmiling😃

Let go to #keepsmiling

Who hasn’t felt a rush of overwhelming emotions within due to some wrong done by another person? But is it wrong? From everyone’s point of view? From the doer’s point?

…is it? Wrong?

Almost all of us have experienced anger or frustration due to an act of someone around. And the feeling keeps us tied down to the emotions.

Then the thought itself steals away our ability to #keepsmiling! But firstly, is the person so significant to let them interfere with our 😊?

And secondly, if you think from their perspectives, it will mostly make sense why they did it. A very strong belief to have is: everyone is doing good from their own perspectives!

These two beliefs have helped me and many others I have counseled. And can help you too to #keepsmiling!

Let me know what you think about the idea of letting go! 😊 And having this belief!

Know self to #keepsmiling

What keeps your SMILE away from you? A few of the answers to that question usually heard are: ‘My family’, ‘my friends’, ‘the stinky place I live’, ‘my marriage’, ‘lost job’ and even ‘new-found job’, ‘the weather’, ‘the society’, ‘the crimes around’, and many more.

Which one is yours?

One means to deal with these and #keepsmiling is to know yourself. And maybe – adapt – if necessary! It might be through meditation, reflection, conversation with people who stay with you, psychometric tests, or any other similar means.

When you know yourself, you are better at dealing with the things that hurt you or bring pain to you. And thus at not letting these take away your smile!

There are things you can change and there are those you can’t. It’s easier both to change and to handle the unchangeable when you know yourself! What do you think? Can knowing yourself help you #keepsmiling?