Thursday, February 17, 2011

How Much is Too Much ?

Updated on 7th Nov. 2014

There is a hunger today in most of us to become high-achievers. The world having shrunk in size, all are familiar with the glitterati in their respective fields. The aura of success,fame & glamour around them inspires many of us to excel in our own sphere & make a name in the halls of fame. So far so good ! Whoever can label this as a vice ? Such aspirations benefit not only the individual, but also the society at large. Or we would have been bereft of all the amenities that we unthinkingly enjoy today.

Success is like tonic to body & mind. It makes a person happy,confident,energetic,amicable,outgoing & healthy. So where is the snag, you might well ask. Well success might be a tonic but it can also act like a heady wine. When it intoxicates a person the advantages recede & ill-effects surface.Someone hell-bent on outshining everyone else and reaching the pinnacle at the soonest forgoes the ordinary pleasures of life.He does not even have the time to enjoy the wealth that he keeps piling.Nor can he devote quality time to his family.The most he can do is,indulge their fancies & give them a free hand in spending money.  

No doubt this whole trajectory must have started in order to attain happiness & fulfillment. But when they reach the pinnacle can they be said to be truly happy ? No way! The whole journey becomes self-defeating.It is true that they live in luxurious homes,possess a fleet of cars,own private jets & so on & so forth. But do they have peace of mind & the bliss of contentment? Any new acquisition brings a fleeting sense of joy & very soon again they will be scanning the sky to decide what next ? It won't be long before boredom & ennui set in. Even their kids will one day tire of all the luxuries at their disposal & find themselves at a loose end. Happiness-which is the ultimate aim of every living being-stays out of their grasp. 

I certainly don't deride ambition & evolution. We definitely need to set the bench-mark higher & higher in order to  progress. Had our forefathers not done so , earth would still have been at the center of the universe & a trip to the moon would have been unthinkable ! But as we speed along, we must take care not to lose the human touch. All the luxuries of the world cannot replace the soft caress of a loved one on the forehead when one is having a headache. A lush life will give little comfort if our relationships have gone awry. And even the presence of a warm family around will not help us to get sleep if we are preoccupied with an obsession to overtake the next person on the scale. 

A craving for power & money can spew disastrous consequences.The initial taste of power & money provides many comforts & one naturally tries for more. And more, and more ! The hunger soon becomes insatiable; so much so that he does not

It is no secret that excess of everything is bad.The" Golden Mean" as Lord Buddha said, is the best state to be in.It is important to nurture all aspects of one's life.Material acquisitions alone cannot give peace or happiness.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


Updated on 23rd June 2017

The institution of marriage has undergone a vast sea change in the last century. No longer is it considered a sacred tie to be adhered to under all circumstances. As families become nuclear & people become more individualistic, some have even begun to question it's necessity--doing away with it altogether & making do with live-ins. They enjoy greater freedom as a result,but they miss out on the strong foundation that a family provides. Marriage is like an anchor to a couple & their kids--a cozy nest where they can come back & rest after a hard day's grind . It provides emotional sustenance in times of distress & motivation to perform & excel. 

Well! Well !I know what the skeptics are thinking. With the numbers of  divorce going up every day , what guarantee is there that the family will be around when one really needs it ? None, if we go on in this manner! Now is the time to pause & take stock. Why do couples divorce ? Because they don't see eye to eye. In order to avoid such a situation the problem needs to be tackled from two angles--first that mismatched couples do not marry & second that they try to adjust & adapt.

PREMARITAL COUNSELING helps to determine that your spouse to be is on the same wave-length as you are. If you overlook the initial attraction & consider the various aspects of your personalities which might generate friction when intimacy deepens;then you can make a judicious choice whether or not you should marry the person in question.

MARRIAGE COUNSELING helps to iron out the differences that crop up after marriage.It aims to save the marriage & helps the couple to live a harmonious life together.

PREMARITAL COUNSELING---This is one service which a couple who wants to tie the knot must make use of. It will help to clarify what stand they both have on a host of issues that will mean much in their married life. In case they hold divergent views which could lead to irreconcilable differences later on, it would be better to call off the event altogether. Some of the issues that need to be sorted out are--

(A)Suppose they are employed in different cities who,if any,will give up his/ her job to be together?

(B) Does either of the two have any sexual anomaly or kink which could annoy the other ?

(C)Are they medically clean & compatible (in terms of HIV or Rh factor)?

(D) Do both want kids? How many & after how long? Suppose if one of them is infertile what will be their course of action?

(E)In case they are from different religions whose religion & culture they & their kids will follow? Whose values will be promoted?

(F) Will they take joint decisions on matters which impact them as a family?

(G)Do their meetings during courtship suffuse them with a sense of pleasure & well-being or do they mostly end up fighting?

Despite best precautions, when two individuals live together day in & day out ;minor irritations & disillusions are likely to erupt.It is just not possible that when two people from different families & backgrounds live together, their habits & perceptions should match perfectly.Till now they used to see each other in their best attire & on their best behaviors. But this changes after marriage. 

One of them may realize that the other is too slovenly or has no talent for order & neatness. Therefore there are bound to be some grudges. While both of them ought to  make adjustments to come up to their partner's expectations,this should be done voluntarily.An attempt at a complete makeover of the  other person can result in resentment and hostility.

It is equally important to accept the fact that your spouse is a human being & has infirmities just as you have. Broaden your outlook where minor irritants are concerned. Remember when you point a finger at him/her three are pointing towards you. If both of you are committed to each other, by & by you will be able to modify the behavior which irritates the other person. This is mutual give & take. Even when certain grave shortcomings or social lapses need to be corrected handle the issue with velvet gloves. Remember it is not a matter of being superior or inferior-just being different. 

Despite best efforts things sometimes go wrong. At such occasions avoid the blame game. Never say "It is your fault ","You should not have done this ". It would be more productive to put your heads together & find a solution.

Whenever a major decision needs to be taken consult your spouse. Discord is born when one person tries to impose his/her decision on the other .

To a certain extent tiffs between husband & wife are normal & they even help to clear the air-provided communication channels do not clog down. They should always be kept open. It is best to say your grievance in an even tone rather than screaming & banging doors. 

 Do not let ego problems come between you. Make amends if you have been wrong.

 Stick to the problem at hand & thrash out a mutually acceptable solution.Say precisely what is disturbing you,rather than passing sweeping comments that you don't care for me.After you have had your say,listen patiently to his/her reply with an open mind, & not as a mere formality; waiting all the while to pounce at him/her as soon as s/he is finished.

View the matter from the other person's angle too.Consider how it must be hurting him/her.Any issue,no matter how serious it is ,can be sorted amicably,provided both retain control over their anger & emotions.When thus brought to a mutually acceptable solution,the problem is relegated to the past.It will stop rankling their minds & strengthen their relationship.

If your partner is in a foul temper remove yourself from the scene. Let tempers cool down at both ends .Start a discussion when both of you are in a receptive mood.You may let out your angst if you vocalize your feelings when things are hot, but this is sure to worsen the situation. If you want to preserve your relationship don't do it.

Remember a successful marriage is built up on the foundation of mutual respect,trust,acceptance,adaptation,devotion & loyalty. It is better to improve, reinvent & rediscover the joys of your marriage if you are having doubts about it. Because a perfect marriage where you get everything tailor-made is very rare.No matter how many partners you change,patience,tolerance & adjustment shall always be required.Therefore instead of suffering the heartbreak of a breakup,try to mend your relationship.After all you did see many positive qualities in your partner when you first got together;try to focus upon them & encourage him/her to bring them up once again.

A very potent reason of break-ups is adultery.This is one lapse which partners find difficult to forgive & forget.Even watching porn on the net is unacceptable to some.If you exercise self-control,the dividends will be manifold.Actually any relationship gets a bit stale with time.If this is bothering you, then think up ways to introduce some newness in it from time to time.This will give a new lease of life to your relationship.Don't let inhibition deter you.It is in your hands to strengthen your relationship & live happily ever after.