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People Pleaser aka Master Manipulator

“If you live for people’s acceptance,you will die from their rejection.” Lecrae

You are born a  person who is humble & polite with everyone; a good human being, not hurting anyone. In the process you somehow starts getting uncomfortable with conflicts, you like people being happy with you. Gradually you can’t afford displeasing them, you’ve to make them happy at any cost. It becomes a self inflicting game of keeping everyone content at each given moment of time. The web grows from being at toes for one person to many. You start weaving stories, drowning in lies to cater to the needs of people around you.

My observation & research have shown a strong connection between people pleasing and self esteem. A person going through a low self esteem phase would love when people are nice to them. You make sure that you agree with whatever they say,do or think. You generally are the favourite sidekick, giving yourself an identity too. It sure does bring a short-lived sense of belongingness turning soon into strong feeling of worthlessness.

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The problem sprouts when you are close to two people having contradictory mindsets. You do the same routine, manipulating your words & actions as the need be. The saddest part is, apart from being a manipulator, you lose yourself!

Self bashing becomes our life style. We get stuck in this vicious loop. Our fear of disappointing people stops us to even do rational thinking. We suffer but we oblige.Sometimes, we helplessly see that we are being taken advantage of and do nothing about it.

People pleasing is a dangerous addiction, here are few ways to try sobriety :

  • Identify & stop the cycle of manipulation: You certainly can’t be a ‘Yes Man’ to all. Understand how sometimes you twist facts or information to make everyone happy and avoid conflicts.
  • Work on your self esteem: You don’t need others approval to feel good about yourself. Find a way to uplift your self esteem, sometimes a professional support helps.
  • It is okay to displease/disappoint people: As they say, you can please some people all the time, all the people for sometime, not all the people all the time. You’ll have few who won’t be contented by your actions, but that means you do have a voice of your own. Be proud of your identity and savor it.
  • Get comfortable with conflict situation: With the flourishing of your identity, you’ll face contradictions and conflicts. These are essentials for growth as a person. With conflicts come clarity.
  • Stop mincing words: You have a mind & voice, which means you’ll think and that will be expressed through your words. Please don’t try to hide your opinions in a gift wrap. Say exactly what you mean and sometimes not in so many words. People need to listen to YOU.
  • Self Care:They say;  the way we mistreat ourselves, if somebody did half of it we would kill the person. It is high time to make yourself priority. You need to please someone, let it be you.

It will take time, you don’t change overnight. Be positive, patient & persistent…be you!

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Is learning only retaining?

With each passing day, I am getting more & more convinced that what we test is the merely the retention power of our students. Is that what real learning is?
To be honest we don’t know better. Stuck with the teaching skills of the 70s, we blindly follow.We claim that we are preparing students for the 21st century but refuse to equip ourselves for the same.

You would be shocked to know that instead of empowering our students, we are crippling them more. We try our best to make them the best learners but restrict them to become inadequate rote learners .

To understand this, lets first try to understand what is learning?

The most simple explanation is very well depicted through this diagram.

 

We have conveniently stopped ourselves in the first step of procuring. I strongly think the biggest hurdle, in our smooth movement to the next phase, is our own RESISTANCE. We are so comfortable in checking the procuring ability of our students that we refuse to change and move forward. We are failing to make learning meaningful.

I don’t think that our students are failing us, but it is we who aren’t able to make them understand their own potential & worth.Go ahead, challenge yourself…get out of your comfort zone. You have the power to make life long learners, making relevant transformations.

TIME TO CHANGE US!!!

Indisciplined Demons

 

If we don’t shape our kids, they will be shaped by outside forces that don’t care what shape our kids are in. ~ Dr. Louise Hart

This lead to me reading and working on understanding discipline and annotating it in a positive aspect. Authors, Psychologists,Researchers have shared their profound knowledge & experience with us. They have provided us with various ways for positive discipline. It is definitely insightful and empowering, gearing up with these useful tools.

Parents & educators feel ready & groomed to take the plunge. They, equipped with their new found understanding  start implementing these strategies to the tee but most of the time their skills & efforts go in vain. The real change in behaviour is a far cry from the expected guaranteed one. Often blame goes to the expert but the simple reason is our naivety in not being conscious of the relevant protocol.

Read books with a plethora of strategies and ways to positively discipline your kids or students but realized a major ingredient of a successful recipe missing from the best there. You expect individuals to implement the strategies but what happens to the flavors they are bringing with them. There can’t be a blank sheet as we are human beings with our individualities, our strengths & our challenges.

How do we expect to implement the strategies with our subjectivity?

Our life’s journey fill us up with resentments, anger, grief apart from tons of other emotions. We carry the baggage. If we aren’t able to identify and deal with the things in our baggage, our perspectives will be colored. We will deal with our children with these shaded emotions making the questionable behaviour worse if not better.

I feel the sharing on discipline and behaviour modifications are great but for doing so one needs to deal with one’s demons first. One has to think, if I have my own insecurities, how am I going to be non judgmental in my approach which is the biggest pillar of positive disciplining. hqdefault

I would say learn, imbibe, implement but be aware of your own challenges otherwise your education is futile. Your angels & demons live inside you, choose to excel or fail. When there is no enemy within, the enemies outside cannot hurt you.

“We like Batman – we understand him, we suffer with him. On the other hand, we want to be Superman. But they’re conflicting philosophies. Let’s bring them together in one movie and see how we, as an audience, wrestle with our inner demons.”-Wolfgang Petersen

 

Colored Shaded Perception

“We perceive the world the way we see it, not the way it is” The Talmud

We wear shades every day. Shades, which color the way we look at the world. The world remains the same, yet we find it different each and everyday. Our emotions & experiences color our shades of perception.

If we are wearing a bright shade, the world looks brighter however it is dark and gloomy when our shades are changed to the dark colors. It’s interesting to observe how we perceive everything on the basis of the shade we are wearing on a particular day. The exactly same experience,situation & people could yield the opposite effect because of the difference in the shades worn. 2012-12-04 12.54.38

We are oblivious of these invisible shades and as a consequence try to find external reasons for our different feelings & emotions. We waste our time in changing the external setup without changing what’s inside ( & the source of our perception). It frustrates us that we changed so many things still the positive change is not happening,unaware of the true source.

Our social interactions are also very complicated as that brings together a lot of colors and shades which results in a totally new color each time mixed & matched. When we are not a part of the mixture we are able to see the shades and be objective and appreciative of its beauty. But when we are drenched in that color we need another eye to define the exact shade of the color for us!

Then how do we wear our best shades on each day that we are blessed with?

I know it is not possible to wear bright, colorful & cheerful shades everyday but being aware of this concept enables us to deal with situations.

When we are physically not well we take care not to get into something we are not able to do or which could weaken us more. The same should be true for our mental health. If we are aware that this day I am not wearing the best of my shades, we should avoid getting into situations which expose us to harmful rays and could push us into negative outputs.This knowledge would also help us in identifying the kind of shades the person/s we are dealing with is wearing.                      tumblr_muo3vdeOhp1qevqz6o1_500

Upgrade your self!

I’m beautiful in my way
‘Cause God makes no mistakes
I’m on the right track, baby
I was born this way                                       199260_1944591455313_1258298182_32372566_4581018_n

I love this song. It sums it all. I am fine the way God has made me and should be proud of it.

Then why the world talks about changing? They say it’s never too late to change your life or your life doesn’t get better by chance, it gets better by change and so on.

When you think about it in this way it is confusing, you get entangled in your thoughts.

Actually it is quite simple. We all are born in a certain way ( which is beautiful & perfect) but we need up gradation.

Think of it as a software which is inbuilt in your system but needs constant update otherwise it will be obsolete. You need to imbibe change to stay away from spam and run antivirus regularly.

We are born perfect but in our journey of life we catch a lot of viruses. These corrupt the system, that is why the need of CHANGE is there.

As a child we are pure, perfect and that’s our true self. As we grow our values, beliefs & attitudes are altered through our life’s experiences. We keep on putting layers on our true selves to hide our insecurities & challenges.

It’s time to stop, reflect, get rid of the many layers ( viruses) and accept our true beautiful self.

Trust me nothing is going to be more EMPOWERING!

Its only the mould which breaks them!

Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You. – Dr. Seuss

I am a true believer of the uniqueness of each and every individual. We differ in a lot of ways from each other and this certainly affects our learning too. Some lessons work for us while some fail miserably, why is it so?  1for-a-fair-selection-everybody-has-to-take-the-same-exam_787144ec8906c416d5b842d5d9412257

I won’t give the whole credit to the instructor of the class but the power is in the hands of the learning environment. I am going to explore three learning environments, which according to me is instrumental in deciding the future of an individual learning outcome.

1. **A learning environment which encourages the right way of using multimedia**:
This environment provides educators with an opportunity to engage learners in an immerse and interactive environment that requires knowledge, decision making, and information management skills.

( http://www.educause.edu/eli/programs/learning-technologies)

The world is changing and how? Being in India, we are living with technology. I work in a school where we are preparing our kids to be successful in the next decade. We still have no clue what advancement in technology would be there by then but one thing we couldn’t deny is the growth of multimedia.

I have seen children who learn genuinely through games, simulations & virtual world. They are excellent in it and any given day could teach you skills you can use life long. But they aren’t learning the way we are teaching them. We become too instructional with something which is made to be explored & experimental.

I have seen special students doing fairly well and learning effectively when given the opportunity with multimedia.

My only, but not trivial concern, with this learning environment is the inability of children to stop and draw the line when requires. It still needs vigilant supervision.

2. **Learning through Nature :**

My next environment is just the opposite of the first one. I have never seen the happiness and contentment in learning than when students return from a field trip or external learning environment.

Play expert Stuart Brown ( 2009) provides compelling evidence that a ” play deficit” exists. It is sad but true and if you are blessed to be in an educational environment you can actually feel it.

The brain develops in a healthy way and it also enables creativity. The addition of fantasy also encourages students to role play and conquer their fears. The flip side actually emerges from here when it goes beyond learning and the child is unable to come back to reality and the practicality is lost.

3. **Sociocultural Learning environment:**

To meet the goal of “preparing people for an ever-changing world”, instructional programs need to apply strategies that focus on the development of critical thinking, problem solving, research, and lifelong learning.

Every day you learn something due to your individual, social & cultural factors. The best learning is when you recognize these factors and make full use of it while most of the time sadly it goes unnoticed. If properly used and made an aide to learning, it impacts our growth for life.

So, my whole point is wear the suit which suits you the best. No need to run after what works for the people or what is in these days.

Remember most of the time ““Its only the mould that breaks them!!!”

“Who to be and Who not to be”

Recently lost a colleague, who was struggling with cancer. A person who was disciplined, focused and always working for the future. He seldom enjoyed the present as that diverted him from his focus. After the feeling of sadness and loss, came the reiteration to my learning of cherishing the present.

Most of us know this very well, we have read & heard about it all the time. Then what makes it so difficult to follow.

I would say one major reason is the people we are with. I am a true believer of “the power lies within us” but at the same time totally appreciate the significance of Influencers.  These are the people who give direction to our thought processes, change our moods & can play with our feelings. These influencers can be easily categorized into the positive, neutral & negative.

Think of the people you stay with and you can see them fitting into one of these categories.  There are the ones who make you feel better, good about yourself as well as the situation you are in, consequently encouraging you to live in the moment. The second category is of those who are there but very rarely cross your path of thoughts and feelings, usually is in sync with almost everything you say or do. Then there are those who make you feel unsure, doubts yourself and everyone and fills you with negativity forcing you to leave the present. 126030489542970752_Ch8EfMZu_c

But the most integral part about these influencers are their dynamic state. It is interesting to observe that a single person is in different categories viz a viz various people. A single person could be the positive influencer for someone while can play the negative one for someone else.

Take our relationships as chemical reactions. Certain types of personality types with distinct personality traits when mixed with other kinds can yield different results. Which can or can’t be pleasant.

As two substances when mixed gives a totally rare output the same is true with us. When we interact with a certain person the whole experience is  typical to that  person only. From here it becomes simple to understand the chemical reaction which we have with some people yielding positive or negative results.

Be aware, start reflecting on your relationships & interactions. Start spending more time with people who help you live in the moment. Bring out the positives in you, love to laugh and can make you see the good part in all the situations.  Stay away from those who drain the energy out of you, make you run away from the present and make you doubt yourself.This means you need to start assessing the people around you.

I am not encouraging you to be selfish but just to start loving yourself!

 

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