My Harshest Self

And with Multiple sclerosis , the mood swings for me are a bit intense. It doesn’t help that I’m a Gemini- Taurus cusp or that I have a steroid producing brain tumour or that I’m plain nuts… but I do seem to have really low lows. The plus is that I am logical enough to know it’s temporary and fixable. The minus is more often than not I’m not sure how to do that and get frustrated with myself for not knowing how to!

And then I think about the number of times we’ve had flaws pointed out in our Bffs by others and how fiercely we’ve stood by and protected them! They are not flaws, we insist; merely traits that make them more unique, more special and more loved.

What if we were to apply the same rules to ourselves?

So when we are meeting an indecisive client who doesn’t see the amount of effort it took us to create something special and we’re feeling low, instead of blaming ourselves for not realising that the work we’ve done won”t be immediately appreciated or faulting ourselves when the work out we’ve been killing ourselves with doesn’t give us the results we need today- we should love ourselves- much like the Bff who doesn’t always return calls or the one who is perennially late. We know that good things come to those who wait for them… why don’t we allow ourselves the same indulgence?

Why are we so mean to ourselves? Why do we give everyone around us a break except ourselves?

And it’s almost with pride that we say that ‘we are our harshest critic!’ Isn’t that sad? Shouldn’t we instead be our biggest fan? Cos if we were friends with ourselves , we’d actually think that we’re pretty darn amazing! Why shouldn’t we allow ourselves to be proud of who we are?

So I’m gonna start- I am absolutely nuts on one hand and supremely focused on the other- that makes me fabulous to hang out with, never short of conversation or gossip! I’m insanely driven and I’m fiercely protective and loyal. I am a fighter having fought MS and fighting it every day and that makes me pretty amazing! I would choose a friend with all of these qualities. So today and forever I choose me!

P.s.-: We have enough people in the world who’d like to pull us down…. there’s no point joining them. They don’t need the help!

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Warning- Personal Baggage!

We all have it. We all keep adding to it. And we don’t spring clean it every Diwali or in the new year- Personal Baggage is here to stay and we are not only a sum of our experiences; we are also a sum of all our personal baggage!

Last week I found myself missing a friend. We had grown up together, made mistakes together, got in to trouble together. She’d seen me at my best and at my stupidest and I just found myself missing her. As we grow older, though the baggage on our backs increase- our insecurities increase , our work pressures, aspirations and our ambitions sore- we seem to be less forgiving of other people’s personal baggage.

‘They’re so cheap,’ we complain not understanding that they have just got out of debt or may still be in debt. ‘ They’re so unambitious,’ we state; not realising that they’ve just suffered major setbacks or are not confident enough to branch out on their own.

Our judgements come quickly and we don’t look at our baggage- but we readily judge theirs!

Look at your old friends and your close friends. In most cases, we don’t judge their baggage and they don’t judge ours. They help out when we’re scared. They cover our insecurities and they make the world a better place because when we are down , they know just which buttons to push to make it all perfect again.

So to make any new , lasting relationships or friendships- maybe before judging how much and how heavy everyone else’s baggage is- maybe we can lend a hand, lighten their load without judgement or complaint. Maybe they’ll help out with ours as well! 🙂

Help me!

“Help me!” – two words that have got such a bad reputation in the English language! “Help me!”- shows weakness.”Help me!”- shows inability. “Help me!”- is pathetic, laughable, unmanly,namby-pamby and just downright sad!

Instead of asking for help , it seems to make more sense to commit suicide, kill others, kill ourselves, commit divorce, burn children,abuse and hurt pets-those are the more acceptable solutions!

And I am angry. Not a shocker for those who know me….But now I’m really mad.

I do not want you to find a counselor or a support group or a really good friend- I want you to get help and be UNAFRAID TO ASK FOR IT!

In India we have always perceived those who’d seek a counselor’s help a little bit nuts… I mean you have to be a little mad to seek help that your friends and family can’t give you. I mean our parents never needed counseling- why the hell should we?!

But today is a different generation. We are a generation who don’t finish work at 6 p.m., who have to reply an email at 11:30 p.m. at night because that’s what ‘Smartphones ‘ are for, who have heart attacks in our 30’s because we’re a generation of plenty- plenty of food, technology AND stress! We are a generation who create smart Status Updates despite being laid off work or stuck with typhoid! We are a generation who misuse the words- “I’m fine”- because we don’t need pity, help, sad eyes! We are a generation who are anything but fine!

Our parents went home to family. They stopped work. They shared stresses. They had friends- some real friends that didn’t judge based on appearances. They had stresses. But they had people around to help.

I am angry some days. I am scared, tired, alone, afraid,outraged, shocked, violent. Some days I want to break a plate or 25 plates, or hit a wall or curl up and hide. And this is okay. Because I am human and it’s normal to feel a range of emotions – sometimes all at once and sometimes all in one day.

But let’s make it acceptable to ask for help. Talk to someone- friend, confidant, counselor- work out the stresses, the stressers, the anger, the pain. And let’s start healing before we keep exploding.

And as a friend to someone today when you ask them how they are- really mean it and… DON’T ACCEPT THE ANSWER -“I’m fine!”

fine