Tuesday, November 16, 2021

A Fixed Routine-Is It A Blessing Or a Blight?

  Let me confess at the very beginning,I don't know the answer to this query.I hope to carry you along as I thrash out it's various facets and reach some kind of a conclusion.

Basically,I love change.Monotony kills me.I try to introduce itsy-bitsy changes in my daily routines.This keeps me active,happy and alive.Anything new in the day makes life interesting.It refreshes the mind.I am forced to ponder which new element I should introduce in my daily routine the next time-an element which will not disrupt my routine yet make it slightly different from other days.

Talking of routines-these too hold a very important place in my life.Everything should be done at the right time.This establishes much needed discipline in my schedules.Oh yes'discipline keeps me straight on the line and prevents me from frittering away the hours reading,eating goodies and drinking tea.

Yes,fixed routines make life systematic.You are forced to tend to chores which you do not relish but which are important nevertheless.A fixed routine kind of anchors you,you know which activity should best be pegged at which time-considering the availability of time,space and stamina. 

A very significant advantage of following a regular routine is that it is therapeutic for those who suffer from anxiety or depression.It nudges them into action when they feel lazy or incompetent.And then they can very well believe that things are in control,life is running at an even keel,and there are no disruptions to pull them down. 

Some might argue that fixed routines make life rigid and dull but this can be obviated by introducing pleasurable interludes in between stressful tasks. After all planning the routine is in your hands isn't it?

What is your opinion?Do you think we should follow regular routines or not?Do tell us all what you think. 

Saturday, May 22, 2021

#Stress Busters To Keep You Cool

What better time than this one to talk about stress?Stress is good and stress is bad.It motivates you to work harder and faster but it can also bug you to death.It is not difficult to pinpoint the stress which is helpful or the one which is killing you but ousting the pernicious kind from your life is sometimes hard.
It has been categorized by various experts into three classes:Acute,Episodic Acute and Chronic.Another way of categorizing it would be as Physical,Mental and Emotional.All three require different kinds of stress-busters.Relief is faster if you match the remedy with the malady.
Physical Stress
Physical stress assails us when we work too hard for too long or there is a looming deadline in front of us.Conquering it is the easiest of all.Here are some tips:
*Cut down your to-do list and prioritize that which is most important.
*Break down a complex task into smaller,more manageable parts and tackle each one systematically.
*Do one thing at a time,shun multitasking. 
*Intersperse hard labor with small breaks.
*Do a couple of stretching exercises to relax taut muscles,or take a small walk to infuse mobility in stiff limbs.
*Drink a glass of water-it is very refreshing and we often ignore it in a frenzy to finish our tasks.
*A cup of tea or coffee too,helps to relax.
*Close your eyes and lie down for a while if the setting allows.
Mental Stress
We experience mental stress when we face a problem which is more challenging than our usual workload.This also happens if the goal is not clear or one has to choose between two or more,difficult options.Sometimes,other things being right;inadequate paraphernalia jumps in to spoil the broth.

*If a problem is mind boggling or beyond your purview,seek help from someone who you think,knows more about it.In this way you can save your time and energy as well as eliminate stress.       
*If you would rather do it on your own then take a break and relax for a while.Do something which never fails to calm you.This will allow your churning mind to stabilize and your thoughts will become clearer.
*If time is not a constraint then sleeping over a tough problem often provides the correct solution.As we sleep,our brain continues to work over what had been foxing us and the next day a probable solution pops up,as if dispatched by a kind fairy.I have often experienced this magic-it works.

Emotional Stress
Emotional stress can come from any source:tragedies,difficult relationships,contrary circumstances,a sudden loss,past memories, or worries of the future.It is certainly the most agonizing of all and the most difficult to boot out too.The mind returns to that painful,irritating,humiliating incident or worry again and again.Such triggers cannot be avoided but what you can do is,build a firewall around your heart. 
*Take life easy,don't fret about every aberration or altercation.
*Vent it out.Talk about your problem with those who care for you-or to a professional.
*If not this,then write down your feelings in a journal.
*Exercise,Tai chi,breathing exercises or meditation-all these are great stress busters.
*Sitting in the lap of nature is calming,it will enable you to think things out coolly.
*The best way to divert your mind from agonizing thoughts is to pick up something to do.When you focus on the work in hand your thinking will automatically peruse a new channel.Do it-it is very effective.
*I have found that the best way to forget a worry is to work on an extreme sudoku.I forget everything else when I do this.
*Taking up a strenuous work like gardening,car washing or de-cluttering is also helpful.Such labor consumes the surging adrenaline and cortisol leaving you calmer

Whatever you do to de-stress yourself,don't start any kind of substance abuse,it gives only momentary respite and is harmful in the long run.The thumb rule is to adopt a positive attitude,be grateful for what you have and look at the broader picture.The pits and troughs will automatically look smaller.

Tuesday, March 9, 2021

Reality,Denial and Positivity

Yesterday my husband and I got talking about his health.I had been pestering him to get his blood sugar tested but he had been stalling it since many months.Finally when he did get it done he tested positive for Diabetes.He is a very observant person and notices the slightest aberration in his health or the various systems controlling it. He must have noticed that his hunger pangs were increasing by the day just as I did but he brushed off the thought that he was probably Diabetic.What might have been a minor ailment had now come out in full force.

When I chided him for having been in denial for so long he replied that it was also important to negate disturbing thoughts.So the discussion veered to reality versus Positivity.Positivity is no doubt very beneficial but it is also necessary to give serious thought to the various aspects of a negative thought which disturbs your equilibrium:

  • Like why does it assail you so often?
  • Since how long has this continued?
  • Is it grounded in reality?
  • And what could transpire if it was true and you continued to ignore it?
Denying the possibility of a disturbing feeling having a genuine cause sometimes blows up into a bigger trouble just as it did in my husband's case.The next time you are disturbed by a worrisome thought consider the following:

  • Is it one of your habitual forebodings?
  • Could it be the signal of a pernicious worm turning it's head?Something going wrong?
  • Can things worsen if you continue to neglect it?
  • What are the pros and cons of checking it's veracity?
If your introspection affirms that this negative thought is only because of your tendency to envisage doleful developments and ignoring it will not harm you in any way,you can rest easy and get on with your life.But if this is not the case then you would have attained a safe margin to take prophylactic action against a looming trouble.Both ways,you win.

It is safer to be realistic instead of burying your head in sand in the name of positivity. A brief perusal of recent developments,current circumstances and upcoming events often discloses what could be the cause of your anxiety.Evaluating that element  and deciding your course of action is the best way of coping with it.

Positivity has it's own uses.It inspires hope and surges confidence.You are motivated to fight on and do the best you can.But ignoring reality and postponing a frank look at an imminent danger in the name of positivity does not work.It only worsens the prospects of early resolution. Suppressed thoughts tend to pop up again and again. Positivity gives only temporary respite.

Reality has an inherent force.It will push itself into your life whether you like it or not. Analyzing your thoughts and taking prompt action to safeguard you health and happiness is the best way to be positive.