All posts filed under: Musings

On 100 Days of Blogging

What happened when I blogged for 100 days straight? It felt incredible, first of all. I am proud that I took it on and committed to it, even with travel plans looming ahead. I’ve written previously about my feelings when I completed a hundred posts and my reasons for blogging. This felt like more of an accomplishment because it needed more discipline.   It wasn’t always easy. There were days when motivation was lacking. On these days, I took a quick break to unwind either on my art table or with a book or TV. I planned for days when I knew I would be away from my desk and scheduled posts to auto-publish – posts like this one! I had stopped working after my son was born. As most non-working parents would experience, it is tough to have a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day. The laundry’s still piling up, the house is a mess, you’ve barely managed to feed everyone, and you’re exhausted by the end of the day. It feels …

painting of a woman

On Validation Seeking

Have you ever said (or heard someone say) “I don’t care what the world thinks. I do what I want, and I don’t need the world’s approval.” This sentence is usually followed by a smug look, especially when others nod in awe. This person has just received approval and validation for feeling like they don’t need it. Seeking validation is human nature and essential to being a part of society. We are constantly seeking approval from people around us. It gives us a sense of belonging. A slight nod of appreciation or a Like on a social media post makes us smile and stand a bit taller with a little sense of accomplishment. Some harmless peacocking is good for the ego, but how do we know if it gets out of hand—when seeking approval turns into becoming dependent on approvals?  In light of some investigative revelations that Facebook’s research showed the mental harm of social media on teenagers, it’s worthwhile to reassess our reasons for seeking approval. Constant exposure to the extravagant ‘lifestyle influencers’ makes …

art installation at the Louvre paris of a woman with a large pile of clothes

What a Waste: How to be a Conscious Consumer

Do you think twice about the stuff you buy? I’m not just talking about the price factor, but also the value of the product in how it will enrich your life and the product’s life cycle. Do the resources utilised in the making then disposing of it justify its use? Conscious consumerism in India and the world is on the rise. As festive sales are being heavily advertised, it’s a good time to reflect on how you can be a more conscious consumer. Conscious Consumption Definition What is conscious consumerism? As the name suggests, any consumer of products who, along with price and quality, also considers these products’ social and environmental impact. A product’s life cycle, from production to disposal, is as strong an influence on consumers’ purchasing decisions as to its need. The Rise of Conscious Consumerism The consumer model is slowly shifting. Many customers want to focus on conscious consumerism—a buying practice driven by a commitment to making purchasing decisions with a positive environmental, economic, and social impact.  More people want to buy …

On Persistence

This right here is my hundredth post on the blog! I didn’t think I’d get here in just over two months. I didn’t think I had it in me to be persistent enough or interested enough to follow through. I had wanted to start a blog soon after I had my son. I wanted to talk about things I wished someone had told me about. I also wanted to share my thoughts on a whole bunch of things that randomly cropped up in my head. However, raising a baby, then a toddler is a full day and night job! I just couldn’t muster enough headspace to take on another commitment. However, I jot down points and thoughts I had during that journey, so I didn’t forget whenever I started my blog. These came in handy. It gave me a few almost-ready blog posts to start with and helped me remember things I would’ve otherwise forgotten six years later. One thing that has sustained my persistence is my interest in blogging. I didn’t think I would …

Card saying happy birthday on top of a black and white striped book and a branch of leaves on the side

On Birthdays

Do you celebrate your birthday? I always have celebrated mine. Sometimes with a big party, and sometimes with just a single cupcake. 
Over the years since then, I have met many people for whom birthdays are no different from any other day. I have also met people who celebrate with all the enthusiasm of a child who’s just realised you get gifts on your birthday.

Ganesha idol made with flour and cloves for eyes. Eco-friendly Ganesha

How do you talk about Religion with your Child?

I remember, as a child, I truly believed Gods exist because of the stories my grandmother told of them and the movies we watched based on them. Even as a child, I looked upon them more as historical figures rather than mystical ones. As a parent, I wouldn’t want to force my opinions and beliefs on my child. He’s free to explore and enjoy all aspects of various religious customs. He’s too young to understand the philosophy behind the meaning of God, but he’ll figure that out eventually. Growing up with religion I grew up in a house that practised many religious customs but was not strictly religious.  Practicality (and convenience) usually won over the rituals. As I grew older, I became more of a realist and stopped believing in mythological stories. I still enjoy them, though.  I was never interested in praying. I am disappointed by people who claim to be devout, but their actions are diametrically opposite of religious teachings of all kinds. I am yet to find a religion that accepts and …

Living Through a Global Pandemic

I have to say, even in my most paranoid moments, living through a global pandemic was not on my Bingo card. I am not one to get easily frazzled, but this has come close to completely unravelling me multiple times. At the beginning of 2020, I was just adjusting to a new home, my husband to a new office, and our son to a new school. We were dealing with health issues in the extended family, and we had to cancel a few plans. It wasn’t a chirpy start to the year. When reports of a novel virus came pouring in, I was concerned but only from afar. We stopped reading newspapers or watching the news on TV a few years ago, preferring to quickly catch up on events online. Once the virus started spreading, we were cautioned but not anxious. The sudden lockdown in India took everyone by surprise. The weeks that followed were heartbreaking because of the mishandling of it. News from other parts of the world was even more distressing.  Every day …

Lone black duck in a lake

Taboos: Seeking Therapy for your Mental Health

Have you ever been to a therapist? Or thought about seeking out one? Would you tell people if you did? Mental health awareness is shockingly negligent in our society. So many of us are broken, and we’ve been told to just deal with it on our own. Seeking help for your mental health is seen as the absolute last step you can take before it is too late. I had studied to become a counsellor, but life took me on another path. It made me realise how helpful a counselling session could be for someone going through a difficult time. Over time, as life went by, I never gave another thought to it. Then I became a mom. Every emotion seemed intense and amplified. It was challenging to manage them all at once. Even with a supportive family, I felt I couldn’t express all I felt. I feared judgement and hurting their sentiments. After my first session itself, I felt such an enormous boulder had lifted off my chest. I could say whatever I wanted …

father and son in playful embrace

Fatherhood

Fathers have a profound influence on their children by just being there for them and teaching values through actions rather than just words. The role of a good father is immeasurable. This is of course only applicable to families where fathers are present. When fathers are good role models, they set the behavioural standard for the child to emulate and for all other men in the child’s life. Fathers have many different roles in their children’s lives. Fathers need to make sure they do an excellent job in those many different roles. A father who is a good role model will help their children respect themselves and those around them. The changing role of the modern day father Many fathers limit themselves to a box when it comes to parenting. They see themselves as the hunter-gatherers but not the nurturers. Even younger parents, I find, are not able to see beyond this role. Changing diapers, feeding, teaching and learning activities, or even dealing with the child’s emotional needs are all delegated to the mother.  This …

How to practice Gratitude?

I am grateful for a lot of things in my life. When I’m having a bad day, I think about these to help me re-focus on what’s important. Bringing gratitude in life has helped me through the pandemic times. When I felt stuck at home, I gave thanks that at least I had a safe home; when I got tired of home food, I gave thanks for the food we had in abundance; and when my son got on my nerves, I gave thanks for his health and happiness even in these glum times. I first became aware of the need to practice gratitude after listening to a podcast by Brene Brown. She asks if you look at your child with a heart full of love then immediately think about how something bad could befall them? I did this all the time. From when I was a kid, I remember being told by various people that if you are too happy now then it means you’ll be very sad soon. I’ve always carried that worry …