Thursday, February 28, 2013

Do you Sabotage your Happiness ?

The ultimate aim of all of us is happiness.All our activities are directed towards this goal.But are they really?Unknowingly we adopt modes of behavior which thwart this pursuit & it becomes difficult to be happy if we persist with those very modes of behaving.The root cause of mal-adaptive behavior lies in cognitive distortion which gives rise to stress,anxiety & sorrow.We usually take our feelings for granted--that they are there due to our life circumstances and it cannot be helped.But this is not true.Our feelings are the product of our thoughts,& if our thoughts are skewed then unwanted & unhealthy feelings will take charge of us.Following are some examples of such cognitive mistakes:--

This entails ascribing any untoward incident or reaction to one's own self,even if the cause or the target lie elsewhere.
Consider this---Neeta's hubby Anil, has been moody & uncommunicative since the last few days.She concludes that he has a grouse against her.Her mind goes like this"Now what did i do wrong?","Why is he so churlish?","How dare he humiliate me by not responding to my remarks?I will show him!" etc. etc.You get my point?She has at once concluded that this change in his behavior is connected with her.The poor fellow might be worrying about a health issue or struggling with a problem at work, but Neeta is fuming & fretting without any basis.Not only that,she has also poisoned the atmosphere of her home by being equally surly in return. Anil,already consumed by a serious conflict, is further chagrined, & now they both have another problem on their hands.

Instead of jumping to conclusions when confronted by unpleasantness,it is far more productive to ponder if it is really connected to you?Maybe you are reading too much into it.

As often happens-A shouts at B & B goes off at a tangent.He forgets that A is human after all & maybe he was perturbed because of a crisis which made him lose control; and it had nothing to do personally with him.B upsets his equilibrium & a relationship without genuine cause.He could easily have shrugged it off & gone whistling.

Dichotomous Thinking
This refers to the habit of thinking black & white,or vacillating between two extremes.Such people are highly emotional & rash.They do not perceive reality as it is.When required to make a choice they will opt for either all or nothing.They cannot think of a solution which lies in between.This spells disaster.It rules out a sound,pragmatic course of action.It also disrupts their relationships because they will first unjustifiably place a person on a pedestal &  then break all ties when disillusioned.Such an attitude causes emotional upheavals,leading to disastrous consequences.For example if someone fails to win the affections of a particular individual,or cannot achieve a cherished goal, s/he would rather commit suicide than look for another option.

Selective Abstraction.
This indicates the propensity to focus on only one aspect of a situation neglecting other relevant details.Mostly it is the negative aspect which is focused upon.Those who have low confidence or self esteem are usually in the habit of behaving thus.They ruminate over one shortcoming & forget other positive traits of their personality.Naturally this results in a melancholic temperament.
Selective abstraction is responsible for a person misjudging  situations and relationships.One negative factor is given all importance while other positive elements are totally ignored.No wonder unhappiness & pessimism set in.

Magnification & Minimization
A person habituated to this sort of distortion does not see reality as it exists.He tends to view his lapses & drawbacks as much larger than they really are;while he ignores his strengths & achievements.Carrying on in a similar vein,he will exaggerate the negative results of his actions & not recognize the positive fallout.This is bound to slash at his confidence & self esteem.When this happens,he becomes despondent & life loses it's charm.Even if such a person is extolled for a well executed job by his boss;the moment a couple of mistakes are pointed out he concludes that he is no good.If he is given to catastrophization,he will chew his nails out,imagining this to be the end of his career.

Sometimes we imagine a tragic scenario on the basis of a small event,we are convinced that something awful is going to happen to us.

Sometimes one bitter experience goads us to extend our fear or dislike of it to all such experiences for all times to come.This reminds me of Priya whose favorite stress-buster used to be going to a cinema hall with her gang & watching movies.Every week she used to eagerly wait for this outing--till a cinema hall caught fire,killing many.Ever since that day she has not ventured near one ,even though she yearns for those jaunts.
This is a clear case of overgeneralization.We often indulge in this to a lesser extent when one unfortunate encounter leaves us hating & avoiding the whole class or community.

We cannot control the frustration arising from vexing life events,but surely a lot can be done if the same stems from cognitive distortions.If left unchecked,these habits can culminate in mental diseases like Depression,Borderline Personality Disorder ,Bipolar Disorder etc. etc.In order to get rid of these distortions we can do the following:---

*First & foremost,it is imperative to note when & how you are being swayed by a cognitive distortion.Look back upon your past & then decide which deviation do you mostly indulge in,so that you can be alert to it's incursion.

*When you find yourself giving in to irrational thinking make a reality check.Are you hundred percent sure that things are as you have judged them to be?

*Is there any evidence to support your opinion or your fears?

*Would a neutral observer agree with you?

*Think of a well adjusted person whom you hold in high esteem--would s/he react to the situation as you are doing?

*Even if your apprehensions are well founded on facts;is it a given outcome in all cases or is it the exception?What chances are there of you being adversely affected?

Taxing your brain with such strictures can help you to get rid of erroneous thinking & replace it with sound judgement.This will cut down your frustrations & augment your peace of mind.

Image from google search.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Zodiac Sign Virgo

Intelligent,analytic,disciplined & practical--Virgos have all the prerequisites of success.They are well organised,methodical & tireless workers.If they take up a task they will execute it to perfection.Their ruling planet Mercury endows them with a keen sense of discrimination.A detail which has been missed by all others will be pin-pointed by a Virgo.When faced with a problem or a tough situation,they will analyse it from the point of view of common sense & logic--which they have in profuse quantities.This makes them terrific problem-solvers.They also make excellent doctors scientists & engineers.Their lives are usually well planned.They like everything to be neat,clean & tidy--their homes are a delight to live in.

However all these super-duper qualities do not give them swollen heads.In fact they are shy & retiring by nature.They shun limelight.You could call them aloof but i think it is their shyness & overactive intellect which keeps them preoccupied & musing.

Need i say more?Unfortunately a lot remains to be said & it is not so palatable.Firstly, their critical,analytic & perfectionist traits can sometimes cojoin to make them fussy faultfinders.Not everybody is blessed with the qualities which they have & a little bit of untidiness or disorder is not as inimical as spoiled relationships.This critical tendency of theirs is often directed at their own selves-affecting their well being.They need to forgive their own lapses as well as those of others.

Another characteristic of the Virgos which is not so healthy is their health-fads.They want their health to be perfect always-which is not possible.They will analyse every tiny twitch or click & then brood over it.They have to guard against becoming hypochondriacs.

Virgos are sometimes judged as being cold.This probably derives from an odd fetish--they don't like to be touched.It is not a very prominent attribute but if found in married persons it has to be guarded against.

Now before any of you take umbrage at all that i have said above,one caveat: there are three Virgos in my family & it is not as if they are all peas of a pod.While one was a painstaking,hardworking person of retiring nature,the second is a shy perfectionist & the third is critical & health-conscious.It all depends upon individual horoscopes too.

As always,i am sorry if i stepped on any toes.Blame it on my Arian nature.

Text credit--Richard Sterling
Pics--google search.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Vakt ke Saath

Ab to hum aa gaye hain raahon mein,
Raah kitni bachi hai raahon mein?
Kar diya maaf sab gunaahon ko,
Ye bhi shamil hua gunaahon mein.

Ek hi se vafa to mumkin hai,
Thi wo khud se, ya phir wo tum se hai,
Kar ke khud maaf yun sitamgar ko,
Hum bhi shaamil hue, paraayon mein.

Vakt kaisa ho,wo gujarta ha,
Zakhm bharta hai,par wo chubhta hai.
Bas kisi par nahin siva apne,
Dil ye apna, hai gunahgaaron mein.

Hai tapish kam magar,khalish si hai,
Badli yaadon ki ab ghiri kyun hai?
Kaanton ke beech gul bhi khilte hain,
Kaanton se apni dosti bhi hai.

Kuchh to apni bhi bewakoofi thi,
Aur kismat mein bhi maayoosi thi,
Akl aate hi aate aati hai,
Shikwa auron se is kadar kyun hai?

Hum banaate hain khud hi apna kal,
Ismein galti nahin kisiki hai.
Jo bhi boya thaa,wo hi paaya hai,
Ranjish ye jhoot,bewajah si hai.

Har jagah sabj, gulo-gulshan hon,
Ye to mumkin nahin,sadak bhi hai,
Raat kitni bhi ghup andheri ho,
Uske hi baad to sahar bhi hai!
Uske hi baad to sahar bhi hai!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Zodiac sign Leo !

Leo is the royal sign of zodiac & it's ruler is the Sun.So naturally,a Leo is authoritative,impressive,magnetic & distinguished.He has natural qualities of leadership & organisation.He is very ambitious & aims at the top.His intelligence,self confidence & a strong will help him to reach his goals.What's more,he is honest,loyal,sincere,generous & very humane too.No wonder he is widely admired & respected.His loved ones are specially lucky to have him around because he is extremely magnanimous where their needs or desires are concerned.

What else?I have run out of all my adjectives now!Therefore let me start with the opposite strain.Any quality,when carried to the extreme,can become a detriment.Likewise with the Leos.Take care you do not bamboozle gentle folks into submission,because you do like to dominate.While it is true that you are helpful & generous;you expect a lot of approbation in return & if it is not coming in your desired quantities,will you resort to strutting or boasting?I hope not!Then again,your liking for ostentation & opulence could incite you to overdo it --so take care.As you are very sure of your own views,it is easy to slip into intolerance.Some Leos can be dogmatic too.

I guess it all depends on the placement of other planets in your horoscope and your own sagacity--how far you are able to channelize or curb the rush of your energy.

Have i been hard on the Leos? No! How could i annoy the king of the zodiac? Take this as a piece of fun please!!!!!!!!!!!
Text courtesy Richard Sterling
Pics from google search.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Me and my Destiny

If i had to write my own destiny,
What would i have written differently?

At any given moment we cannot tell,
How our efforts are going to jell.
At the cross-roads, choices are few,
Our perceptions too, fall askew.
Even of the next moment we can't be sure,
The road ahead,is so obscure.
With a lot of care i choose my course,
Falling shadows leave, no recourse!

If i had to write my own destiny,
What could i have written differently?

The chosen path leads to a logical end,
Can't go back to alter or mend.
What tempts today could doom tomorrow,
A vagrant spirit,can lead to sorrow.
He only knows the ultimate design,
Has some purpose,up His mind.
You or I,could never beat that,
At this game,He is old hat!

If i had to write my own destiny,
I wouldn't have written it differently!

Image courtesy google

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


 I am proud to present today a valuable post by on a topic which has great significance today.It is so comprehensive that i need to say no more.Please read on-----

Dealing with addiction: One step at a time Addiction can creep up on you in very sneaky ways. It starts with a particular fondness for a harmful substance, becomes a habit, and then grows into an over-powering need which eclipses other considerations such as health-well being, finances, family and friends. It slowly becomes a vortex which people keep spiraling into, but with a conscious effort, one can rise above and beyond addiction. No matter what the substance is, one can always find ways to come out of it, with steadfast dedication, and with help from family and friends.

The first step, and the most important step to come out of addiction, is to recognize the fact that you have a problem.Very often, when someone is addicted to a substance, the person tends to get very defensive about the addiction.And slowly,the person refuses to admit,even to himself/herself,that there is a problem which needs to be solved.Recognizing that there is a problem, and recognizing the fact that you need help is the first step which will help you deal with addiction.

One day at a time is the way to go, while dealing with addiction. All support groups stress upon the fact that when recovering, you should always focus on being substance-free one day at a time, instead of aiming for a month or a year. These goals, though lofty, will only overwhelm you, because the thought of being without the substance for so many days will make you nervous, and this nervousness will push you right back into addiction. If you go one day at a time, diligently, you will realize that you have passed not just days and months, but also years without it. But being sober and substance free for the day is the most important goal which you have to work towards.

If you have friends and social circles who indulge in the substance which you are addicted to, then it’s a very good idea to remove yourself from their company. If they are good friends or family members, they will understand your struggle, and they will make efforts to keep you away from the substance, but if they are not, then, it’s best that you find other people to hang out with.

Get external help, because often, it is harder to communicate with people who have not faced addiction like you have. Go to a support group, or to a rehab centre if you think the situation is dire. If you need psychological help, then you should approach a counselor with whom you can talk honestly and openly about these problems. It is very important to share certain things, and often, sharing with strangers, helps more than sharing with family and friends. But do not keep them out of it either. Tell them honestly about the problem, and if you need space away from them and then make it clear that you need it.

Take up a hobby which is time consuming. This will make you miss your addiction less, and will make you productive as well. Take up gardening, or take up bird-watching, or any hobby which you might be inclined towards. This will help you grow as a person too, and a busy mind will make you feel happier, and more accomplished at the end of the day which will also increase your self-esteem.

Make sure you promise yourself that you will grow into a better person, day by day, and hour by hour.If not for your friends and family, then just for yourself. Your life deserves more respect than substance abuse. Make sure you give it more meaning, make sure you feel like a better person with each passing day.

This is a guest article by To read articles on Health, Lifestyle, Relationships,
Empowerment and Leisure, visit this woman-centric online magazine which has a fast growing
community of over 75,000 member.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Beautiful Planet Saturn

Ever heard of a planet which is huge enough to contain 750 earths,yet light enough to float on water?That is Saturn for you--the second largest & also the lightest planet in the solar system.It has also been rated as one of the most beautiful bodies out there.It is ten times farther from sun than earth,the sixth planet from there,but it can be seen with naked eye--the last planet to have that distinction.In fact at certain points it can even outshine most of the stars in sky with it's yellow light ( Uranus & occasionally 4 Vesta are visible in very dark night sky too ).

It is a gas giant composed mainly of hydrogen gas.A heavy atmosphere of this gas around it, liquefies the gas,so that a huge ocean of liquid hydrogen which is thousands of miles deep, covers the planet.The weight of this ocean transforms hydrogen into liquid metal,which in turn,encompasses a hard rocky core at least as big as earth.The metallic elements create a strong magnetic force which extends up to millions of miles in space.

The temperature at the top of Saturn's atmosphere is  -300*F & the clouds there are made up of frozen gas crystals.Beneath them are moist clouds resembling those on earth.The heat below the atmosphere goes up to 10,000*F which is strange considering that Saturn is so far away from sun.But this heat comes from it's core rather than from sun.At the core the temperature climbs up to 12,000*F.The weather on Saturn is not at all hospitable.There are fierce winds zooming at a speed of up to 1100mph,rowdy storms & lightening too.Below is a view of the hexagonal vortex at Saturn's north pole,spinning like mad----

Saturn travels through space with a family of 62 moons which are composed of water & ice.It also has a magnificent system of rings whizzing around it's equator at high speed.These rings consist of small dust particles and bigger icy lumps.These rings are very thin but wide.They reflect sunlight brilliantly.

Saturn spins in about ten and a half hours at an equatorial speed of   35,500km/h; but takes nearly thirty years to orbit sun at an average speed of 21,687mp/h. It is tilted at the axis & has seasons like earth.Since it's year is so long,each season lasts for seven & a half years. Ain't we glad that our winters & hot summers are much shorter?Imagine bearing the brunt of any season for so long!

Moving on to astrology,Saturn is the ruling planet of Capricorn .It affects the person's ambition,career,duty & discipline.It is considered malefic-it leads to contraction of the sector in which it is placed.
Text courtesy Robin Kerrod
Images from google.