In a world where emotions dictate our actions and where digital evolution has exposed our lives to people outside our closely-knit circle of friends and family, we often find ourselves standing under a mountain of complications that have now started governing our mental strength. Moreover, not all of us are surrounded by people who contribute to our mental strength. A thing as humane as having an opinion comes at a cost – the cost of being judged or being argued against. You have to believe that not all your opinions will be respected and understood and that you have to be able to accept it.
As a kid, when you used to cry over petty things, you might have been told that crying is for weak. But when you realized that you can’t help controlling certain emotions, you simply understood that it’s completely alright to show your emotions if you’re mentally strong to be able to handle them. Mental strength isn’t just the thing that you need to fight your problems. It’s rather a way of life that helps you be stronger day-by-day. Here’s your guide to be mentally strong each day and to believe that you are more than just a person who goes through a lot of emotions:
1. Stop feeling sorry for yourself – The more you feel sorry for yourself, the more it’ll become an excuse to run away from your problems. This can be elaborated better with the help of a story I got to share with you. There’s a man who works as a gardener for many houses in my locality including one of my neighbors and he has been doing that for years. Off late, I learned that he has a hearing disability and I was left in shock because I was totally unaware of it. He’s one of the most hardworking folks of the maintenance department of our society and the fact that he never let his disability be his excuse to feel sorry for himself inspired me instantly. People like him give us all the more reason to not feel sorry for how life chooses to treat us. So let’s stop pitying ourselves and celebrate the little blessings of life.
2. Never give away the power you have in your hand – You are an individual and you have to build your own authority if you want to prevent being dominated by others. When you allow someone else to dominate you and to influence your decisions, you give a lot of your power to that person which is what makes you mentally weak. Don’t give anyone the authority to your power because how they treat you is exactly how you want to be treated.
3. Things take time. Be patient and don’t expect immediate results – Expectations do hurt and when unmet, they cause all the more damage. “Rome was not built in a day”. It takes more than a hundred falls for a child to take his very first step. Don’t give up after your first failure. Patience is what measures your real mental strength and impatience is what breaks it. Be it Albert Einstein, Leonardo Dicaprio, or Steven Spielberg, every single successful person you can think of had to go through a long struggle to give this world a reason to remember him/her forever. Patience is the building block to your mental strength.
4. The world out there doesn’t owe you anything – If you are always on a lookout for getting recognition in return for every little thing that you do for people, it’s time that you either stop doing what you do for them or you give up on your desire of being recognized. Don’t get me wrong here. Recognition is what we work for but you must accept the fact that not all of them know the value of your deeds or support. If you’ve been there for someone in their bad times and the person doesn’t value that support, it’s destiny’s way of conveying the message that this world doesn’t owe you anything. You are the only one who needs you and it’s your duty to be there for yourself before being there for others.
5. Never fear alone time – If the idea of being alone at your place terrifies you and makes you feel sad, it’s time that you start practicing being alone to build up your mental strength. Your alone time might make you feel sad for a day or two, but that’s exactly what you need to know yourself more. Of course, that doesn’t mean you should give up on people and lock yourself up in your house but you must recognize the fact that alone time is your asset and you should use it like one.
6. Regret is your biggest enemy – A non-stop feeling of regret works as a slow poison. We are all humans and each one of us must have made big blunders at some point in life. But mistakes once made shall be realized and forgotten there and then or you’ll simply hurt yourself over something you can’t change. Be it the fights and breakups that could have been avoided or a business loss that could’ve been reversed, regrets will test your mental strength every now and then. The onus lies on you to take them in your stride.
7. Never resent other people’s success and never make them your benchmark – Jealousy often leads people to commit mistakes that can’t be undone. It’s what drives your mental strength down and makes you hurt yourself with the feeling of resentment. Never envy someone in a way that you end up making that person your benchmark. This might make you work hard for a while but won’t make you feel happy at all. Focus on what you want to do and how you can be an inspiration to others.
8. Don’t dwell on the past – I was recently going through an amazing article which mentioned something that made me think – “Depression is for those who reside in their past. Anxiety is for those who keep worrying about their future. And happy can be those who live in their present.” Need I say more?
9. You don’t need to please anyone – Being a people-pleaser, for once, can win you an invite to a party where you don’t actually belong or can even get you some extra points in the annual appraisal of your job. But it’s one thing that will make you feel at the mercy of others and can drive down your self-confidence. All you need to do is to remember that you don’t need to please anyone and no hike is worth being cordial with people who can’t respect you. You need to respect yourself in order to make others respect you.
10. Change is your ticket to success. Don’t fear it. Embrace it – I spent 15 years of my childhood in a very small house. At 15, when I had to shift with my family to a spacious house, I couldn’t adjust to the change. As someone who had studied in one school for her entire life, I kept missing my old house (and the neighborhood friends) which held a lot of memories in its small space. But that phase came as an eye-opener when I realized that I was being depressed by something that should make me feel happy. It helped me be prepared for the later stages of life, especially when I had to shift my base to an all new city for higher education. Changes are good and they are your ticket to success.
I’m not your perfect person here who has a lot of mental strength and who can fight everything that comes her way. I’m rather this girl who often feels like giving up on things that don’t seem to work out. It takes immense support and belief to keep yourself going in life. But that’s exactly what adds up to the spice, isn’t it?