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Archive for March, 2012

30
Mar

No Talking? Start Kissing!

No, this article is not about using your lips to kiss when they are unable to come up with words. It is a warning sign for couples who have forgotten to talk and are just filling the void by using lips to kiss.

We all know the drill. You meet someone, you fall in love and you have so much to talk about that people around you get fed up. And you start thinking that sharing lives together forever will give you more to talk about. But you are wrong. When it comes to conversation, after few days of courtship, couples tend to drift apart in terms of talking to each other. Despite the fact that unlike old times now we can stay connected 24/7, we still spend less time chatting.

That makes me question why? Personally I feel that lack of communication is a common issue for people in their 20’s and 30’s who are busy in their stressful work lives and find it difficult to cope up with work and home. When you come home tired from work, the last thing you want to do is talk. In today’s world lives are so busy that couples tend to forget to catch up with each other. You stop wishing “good morning”, you stop asking “how was your day?” or “how is your health?” Daily conversations take on a road of need based dialogues, you talk when you have some work. Worst is if you are in a long distance relationship, you don’t even know what to talk. You call, talk about the day and then follows a long uncomfortable pause where either of you doesn’t speak anything until eventually one person hangs the phone. Communication is a key that unlocks the gates of a successful long terms relationship and when the conversation stops, you tend to lose the emotional connection.

I started wondering what is it that changes between two people who cannot seem to get enough time to finish their talks suddenly get into a stage where there is nothing left to talk. I recently met a couple who was experiencing the phase of silent treatment in their marriage. They met when they were working together. They used to spend endless hours talking about their projects, ambitions and career dreams. Once they got married and the girl relocated, she had to leave her job. The guy got a promotion and started working more and more. After two years of marriage, she realized that it was work that had bonded them in the first place. Once the work was not a topic to be discussed, they had a huge gap and nothing else to talk about.

You might be living together under the same roof, watching TV with your spouse but in reality the bonding seems to be slipping away. Moreover, even when you are at home together, you prefer to surf the Internet alone or do house chores or talk to your friends instead of talking to each other. Dinner times are worst where the only sound that is heard of is the clatter of spoons against plates.

Eventually the situation becomes like an impasse where you keep wondering that how come we have nothing to talk about now. I can still talk with my friends and bond with them then why not with my spouse. When you meet someone and have so much to talk about that time is never enough, you can never believe that silent treatment phase can come.

So we can conclude that it is good to talk but can it be possible that you have already talked too much that nothing is left now? No, you can never have talked enough already, there is always something to talk about. It’s just that we get so busy in our own lives and become so stressed that the smallest things that we were comfortable sharing before feel like ordinary and we avoid saying. Slowly everything becomes ordinary and we end up talking about nothing.

I started thinking and realized that when two people have separate jobs, separate friends, there is very little that they do together. If you think about it, you spend more time with your colleagues at work than your spouse at home. I don’t say that everyone should start working together, but at least they should start doing the other things together. Go shopping together, have lunch together, go to movies, or just make a routine of having morning coffee together. The main point is to be together and just let the conversation flow no matter how unimportant it feels to you.

Do bear in mind that conversing with your spouse won’t be as easy as conversing with your friends. But you definitely should work towards making your spouse your friend. If you feel there is lack of communication from either end, open up, point it out and let the other person know. Every day is not same and one day’s silence does not mean silence forever.

19
Mar

Are You Trying to Make Your Own Life Easy by Blaming Others?

How many times have you heard someone who said something that is mean, vindictive and hurtful and justify it by saying the recipient had ‘made’ the doer mad?

This is just an example of using blame to justify our own bad behavior. Being mean and hurtful is bad and instead of accepting what we did, we prefer to hide under the protective shield of blaming the other person for making us behave in this manner.

Since the time we started talking and understanding things, we developed this habit of blaming people and things around us for our misery. Take for example a blamer who skipped work and always bitched about her company, gets fired one day. Instead of realizing why she was fired, she maintains the fact that she was fired coz the boss didn’t like her. She will not agree that all the laziness and constant bitching and cribbing got her fired. Often such people try to correlate their inefficiencies by saying “well almost everyone else was not working and was constantly bitching about the company. I didn’t do it more than anybody else. I was fired only coz boss hates me”. Instead of realizing her own shortcomings, she preferred to resort to blaming the boss for getting fired.

But this blaming mentality has a very fine line between reality and actions. You cannot recognize that you have it because it is self-reinforcing. You just don’t see yourself doing it because to you it seems logical and normal. Blaming brings short term benefits and gives you pleasure in feeling that you are good and that the world is conspiring against you to make you feel miserable which you cannot control.

Let’s do a simple exercise, list down 10 things that you feel are an obstacle in your happiness and success. Don’t hurry, give yourself 10 minutes to think this through. Now, read what you have written. I can pretty much sum up in general what most of the people would have written. “Lousy job”, “don’t have a loving spouse”, “don’t have enough money to start your dream business”, “don’t have enough time”, “don’t have a good boss”.

Now, let’s think in a positive way. Do you truly feel that the things you mentioned above are really hindrances? Life is always about overcoming obstacles and finding success, then why blame some other factors for your unhappiness. These things always hold everyone of us at succeeding at some point or the other, but is it fair to just sit and keep blaming? The only thing that holds us back is our own thinking. If we decide what we want and work for it then no obstacle can come in our path of success.

When I first heard that I was responsible for everything in my life, I initially accepted that and began to relate myself for every failure and setback. The hardest part was to take credit for the good results that I had created and to accept the fact that I could actually do what I wanted at any level imaginable.

Over the years, I have realized that being responsible for everything in your life is not about blaming or boasting about success but simply acknowledging the connection of what you do and what you don’t do and the results you generate.

At first it is difficult to remove the shield of blaming others and take full responsibility. Imagine how difficult it would be to learn how to ride a bike when you keep blaming the pavement and the obstacles in the path for your imbalance. Instead, you learn how to balance and avoid those obstacles to be able to ride a bike.

Pause and think for a moment now. If things are constantly wrong in your life, if you keep ending up in miserable situations, then chances are that world is not mean against you but there is something really wrong within you. If you cannot find any fault then ask people around you, your friends and family to give you another perspective.

Unfortunately, in such cases you will end up hearing things which you probably don’t want to hear. But don’t react when you hear something against the theory that you have coined up in your minds since a long time. Listen to what people have to say and ask yourself, “if so many people are saying then surely there must be some reason behind it”. Let yourself to change and accept things around you. Obstacles are only to make you feel happy when you actually reach the peak, acknowledge them and fight hard to remove them, don’t let them hamper your speed to success and make you blame others.

08
Mar

Disconnected in the Connected World

Everybody was talking around me and laughing heartedly, yet I was unable to hear what they were saying. I was sitting among a crowd full of people and yet I felt lonely. I could see the lips moving but didn’t understand the words. I felt disconnected from the people, I felt disconnected from the external world.

The frenetic pace of modern society and the need to be very financially successful to blend in the society has made us disconnect from people who love us and care for us. Our work situation increases our loneliness. We forget to stay connected with others or perhaps we never learned since we started working.

Why I felt disconnected is something I cannot comprehend for sure. But, it has probably to do something with losing touch with my inner strength and guidance. By becoming caught up in the everyday hustle and bustle that is an integral part of our lives right now, it is very easy to neglect connection with our real inner self. We tend to place far too much importance on what we are doing, what we are thinking and the material achievements and possessions that we have or want.

Our true being is what we are after stripping away the external aspects of our lives. Our reality is what we are without a job title, without money, without possessions and even without relationships. If asked us to live in reality without all this, we would panic with fear and probably this fear is what keeps driving most of us in pursuit of success, love and possessions. I don’t say that we shouldn’t have these things, we do need wealth, achievements and loving relationships but the trouble comes when these things become a strong need and we feel that without them we would be nothing.

We live in a materialistic trap of life which makes us lose our connectivity with inner self and we forget who we really are. The physical trappings are merely decorations to hide the real us, and we often find them unattractive and ugly yet we crave to want them more and more.

In the race to achieve so much, we live in fear and negative belief that always prevents us from connecting. Since childhood we are told that we are flawed, sinful and wrong. A lot of negative forces surround us forcing us to forget our real self and run behind something that is really not present.

I think this is what probably happened with me. I lost connection with myself and in the process lost connection with the world and people in that world. I suppose by developing a strong connection with our inner self, we can avoid feeling disconnected and lost. Just like our laptop, if there is some internal fault, how is it going to work properly?

I really need to gather myself and connect with myself. It would take a lot of courage considering the strong negative energy that surrounds me telling me to run, run and run away from who I really am. But if I’m able to connect with the inner truth and wisdom that I have, I will be able to connect with the world in a positive way.

All it takes is some positive energy and persistence and the world around you will suddenly feel colorful and happy. So start connecting and stay positive!