‘Life’—what is it? Is it the way we live or the way we see in movies? Do emotions determine our life or do we determine emotions that in a way determine our lives? Well, it is a tricky business. However, one thing is for sure: “life has many faces and phases”. Our faces keep changing with different phases of life, and make us realize that we have grown from the past into the future. The future is that part which we had never imagined. Apart from holding regrets of doing some things and not doing some things, have you ever wondered that the spelling of “life” has a condition hidden in it: the word ‘if ‘. We often tell ourselves or others, if only I had gathered the courage, I would be studying something else; if I had not lied, things would have turned out differently and so on… Our life is run on ifs and buts, and sadly, these two words govern the decisions that we make.
An opportunity that has been showered on us right now in the form of the lockdown period because of COVID-19. This is the time to put your ifs and buts apart, and speak your heart. When social distancing and self isolation are taking over your mind, the best thing to do is to lie down, being mindful about the breathing pattern, and then go back in the past and reflect on those 5 experiences that made your life worth living—those incidents when you were on the top of your ride or when somebody did something good for you, or perhaps, your life took a different course which changed your perspective forever. Trust me, this activity will not only create positivity within, but also help you to reach out to others and help them in whatever little ways you can. Don’t forget, this activity will also make you realise that some people can never be changed and that you have to express your gratitude to them for always being there for you.
For starters, here are some experiences that we collected from people which helped them shape their lives. Happiness is when…..
- You realise pain is inevitable. When you put yourself in somebody else’ shoes, empathy arises.
- My mother’s illness taught me about support, care, choice, introspection, love and empathy. As a child, I was not very accepting of my mother’s illness. There was a bit of shame in me. Once, in the library class, I had read that “As you sow, so shall you reap.” It stuck in my heart forever. I realized how terrible I would feel if I was in my mother’s place and if my family was ashamed of me. I understood that it was not her fault. And that day, my shame about her illness was gone.
2. Leaving your Comfort Zone helps you explore a different side of yours.
- This Christmas Eve, I was invited by my friend for a party. This was the first time that I had an opportunity of such kind. I wanted to experience it. So, no matter how ill I was, I went for it, and I participated in most of the activities and enjoyed it to the fullest. For the first time, I realized how we happiness is something we feel within. Though I couldn’t eat any delicacies, I still enjoyed the space. I had always been scared of playing games. But that day I took a chance and felt so much better. I realized, nobody can make you feel small unless you want to. My energies and “happy-go-lucky” attitude in life has given me some of my best moments in this life.
3. Seeking Help is only an act of ‘Courage’.
- Going to therapy has helped me. I’m grateful for the opportunity and experience of such a healthy and beautiful space. It has helped change my thought patterns, to be more confident, to accept variations, have more self-compassion, to not apologize for my existence and view myself worthy in this world.
4. You don’t get something and you realise it was a wonderful stroke of luck.
- I had to travel to Pune at the beginning of March. My tickets were confirmed, and I was looking forward to going there. One hour before the train’s departure, I got a call from Pune to cancel my trip. It was unexpected, and my whole plan was disturbed. I was in Indore, which was a new city for me. It has just 2 weekly trains to Kanpur and the next train to Kanpur was after 2 days. I was able to get a bus ticket, and travelled more than 15 hours by bus. I was not happy with this turn of events. But after a few days, I was extremely grateful about this change of plans because otherwise I would have been stranded in Pune, which has become a Corona hotspot.
5. Having a family is the best thing that can ever happen to somebody.
- I believe living in a joint family was the best thing that ever happened to me. There was always someone to take care of me whenever my parents were not around. My grandparents were always supportive, and I gained a lot from their experiences. As a result of this, I have always been pampered by my family members.
6. The least expected person stands up for you.
- While going through the preparation phase for my entrance exam, I was dreading the whole part of attending group discussions. The whole class used to be a fish market, and I used to struggle a lot with raising my voice or dominating somebody. In one such case, a classmate of mine stood up for me after he saw that I had a good point to make but was struggling to say it across. That particular incident not only gave me my best friend but also made me realise that good things happen when you least expect them to happen.
According to me, this is the best time where we can find out the best of our relationships, friendships and work. All we need to do is express and thank every single soul who has ever helped us in this beautiful journey called LIFE.
If you have such stories that you would like somebody to hear then reach out to us. Yo Zindagi will make sure you get the best out of that whole conversation.
(This article is a joint effort of Manasi Baindur, Priya Shukla, and Yashi Kapur who are providing online counselling under our Mental Health Internship Program.)
Yo Zindagi is a campaign to promote Mental Health & Emotional Maturity by engaging individuals in conversations and workshop. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.