Setbacks have the power to spur growth

Setbacks have the power to spur growth

Ask Your Counsellor

There are many options that can be worked out once we allow ourselves to go with the flow.

Dear Madam,

Due to some health issues I had to discontinue my studies after Class 12. I have now enrolled for an undergraduate programme. As I am older than my classmates, I feel like a misfit. I am not able to mingle with them and feel too conscious, with respect to my age and health. Please help.

Sagar

Dear Sagar,

Just because you are “older” than others, does not make you “lesser” than others. Just because you had health issues, also does not make you “lesser” than others. I think it will be helpful for you to talk to a counsellor about your fears and insecurities. Everyone has their own journey in life, and it is not a race. It is a journey with fellow passengers whose journeys overlap with yours for a brief period.

If you start viewing it like that, then the fact that you lost a year or two along the way, in the context of your whole life, becomes meaningless. The important thing in life is to be able to get up and continue after a setback, for there will always be setbacks. Your setbacks need not define you, so don’t allow them to. Your setbacks have the power to spur your growth. And you are more than your setbacks. You must believe in yourself and your intrinsic strengths, and a counsellor will be able to help you in this part of your journey.

 

Dear Madam,

My son who is studying in Class 10 wants to take up a part-time job during his vacations to get a feel of the world outside. But I insist he should rather focus on his studies and start working once he is done with at least his undergraduation. It is not that I force him to only study, I also encourage him to take part in sports and extra-curricular activities. I feel that if he starts earning, he might lose interest in studies. Kindly advise.

Shruthi

Dear Shruthi,

If your son is motivated and driven enough to put in hard work during his vacations, maybe you could focus on the positives of that. There are many life skills that working will give him. Maybe you can discuss your fears with him. Maybe you can plan how he should spend and save that money if you have concerns around him having access to money. There could be many boundaries that could be established with communication that would make both him, and you, comfortable with the idea.  

There are options that can be worked out once we allow ourselves to go with the flow. It is the resistance (in this case from your side, to his idea) that is creating the stress. Would you be able to allow yourself to go down the path of acceptance (of his idea) and see how that pans out?

 

Dear Madam,

I am generally one of the top-scorers in my batch. I am meticulous, be it in maintaining my classwork or practical records. I also prepare for my exams in a systematic manner. My classmates borrow my records and copy my lab results to complete theirs before submission. They circle around me with doubts before exams. But at other times their attitude towards me is rather cold. I don’t mind being helpful but don’t like being used. Kindly advise.

Hemanth

Dear Hemanth,

Have you tried communicating that to your classmates? And the way to communicate that is not to question their behaviour (which will undoubtedly make them defensive). Try to state how their behaviour makes you feel. It is possible that they are not aware of the impact their behaviour has on you.

While you cannot control their behaviour, or for that matter anyone else’s, you can definitely control how you interpret that behaviour, how you respond to it, and how much you allow it to affect you. It might be helpful for you to talk to a counsellor to identify if there are flaws in the way you are interpreting the events. Sometimes, a different interpretation or perspective is all that you need.

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