Category Archives: Communication

5 Reasons why understanding someone is like peeling an onion

peeling-the-onion-3Ever tried to understand someone? Why does that perfect boyfriend turn into an asshole at the blink of an eye? And you agonize over hours together asking yourself… “What just happened? Why?? Why would he do that??” Why would he say that???” Your mind becomes hell for those few hours, doesn’t it?

Well, trying to understand people and peeling an onion are one and the same. Your eyes tear up and after all the peeling… you land up nowhere. NOWHERE.

Here are the reasons…

1. We live in the age of smart phones and stupid people.

People are becoming stupider and stupider when it comes to relationships even as our  phones become smarter and smarter in our social networking. All that smartness has screwed up our relationship dynamics. For example, I saw this post in FB today.. “I am married but actually I am single because I feel lonely”…An utterly stupid thing to put on Fb…  Imagine your spouse has seen that post on facebook.  Ten minutes later you tell him/her some perfectly innocent thing like, “I am going to meet my friends.” And while in a bad mood, the internal mechanism might just go whirring like “You with friends = I am single” And the next thing you know, you are hearing things like “Maybe I should have married my first love after all!”

Now can you seriously understand why he/she said that? Will they tell you? In the first place, do they understand themselves?  You will never know. There is noway you can understand all that stupidity.

2. Face it, everyone has a multiple personality disorder.  me

Seriously! No single person is one person. Somebody who waxes eloquent on keeping India clean could be a pig inside his own house. One could be angry in the morning, happy in the evening and somewhere in between during night. And all three are different people. Not the same person. Before you have understood someone they are gone and another person has taken over. So who do you plan to understand? The core of the onion is absolutely empty, you see?

3. You are no Appatucker.

Are you a mind reader? Are you God? How the hell do you know whatever logic you have attributed to the other person’s behavior is indeed true?  Whatever you understand are within the frameworks of your thoughts, your logic. They are assumptions, not truth. Unless you occupy the same space and time as that of the other person, there is no way you can understand the other. You will come round and round in your mind and land up nowhere again, which is exactly the core of the onion. Nothing. Please do yourself a favor and don’t take yourself or your thoughts seriously!

4.  It’s a freaking dance with far too many strings. locusofcontrol

People are basically pulled by many strings at the same time. They dance to those strings. Indigestion can make them bark, a slight change in the atmospheric pressure could spin different thoughts in that delicate brain, Rains can subconsciously remind them about the spanking they received long ago and corresponding responses can be triggered. We all are basically ceasing and arising experiences every moment dependent on a million, million factors. If you try to understand all those factors, you will once again land up in an asylum. There are only experiences not persons. Remember, onion??

5.  “You” are a ‘myth’ too.

When you say ‘I’ am trying to understand, that ‘I’ there implies  you consider yourself to be who you actually are, a concrete person, but the fact is you too are merely a  collection of decisions put together to cope with past incidents. You are a myth too. One myth trying to understand another? A big fat onion core is what you get.

I think I have confused you sufficiently?!! Now you are wondering what the hell should I do if I cannot understand the weirdos in my life? How do I cope then?

1. Experience, Experience, Experience every weirdo in your life. Look at people as experiences not as characters.

2. To have peaceful relationships, have structured forums to discuss your needs and wants every week. Ask structured questions for feedback. “Is there something that I did this week that irritated you?” Ask your partner if it’s ok, if I give feedback on what pleased me and what didn’t. These questions and ensuing conversations will tune you both up. Instead if you jump into silent understanding of the other person’s flaw, you are cooking up the perfect recipe for misery.

3. If your relationship has turned out into just a series of ‘situationships’, then its time to walk away.

3. Once again Experience, experience and experience everything that comes your way. The dates in the calendar are closer than they appear, and in no time you will be up there. Stop machinating in your head and start living.

Hopefully, you won’t struggle with the onion core anymore.

 

 

 

Dealing with feeling

Why is it impossible for kids and teens to listen to their parent’s advice?

Face it! There is not an advice that the teen does not know for himself or herself. “Do not mind your friend’s taunts!” Tell me what is brilliant about that piece of advice? “physical appearances are not important!” Your child probably rolled her eyes and said, “Oh, yea!”

As a parent you are interested in getting your children to behave right. Since you love your child more than anyone else on the planet, you probably want to make her feel better instantly. And you start your advices. But it doesn’t work that way.

Negative feelings become all the more intense when that feeling is not allowed expression. When those feelings are invalidated! When you try to thrust your wisdom on your child as she feels low, it complicates the problem in two ways. First the child’s problem is no more the original problem. The problem now is you! They got to convince you that they really do have a problem. Second the focus is shifted from finding a solution to struggling to validate one’s feelings.

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Why have I not got married?

Ok, I am going to answer this one last time. I am sick and tired of facing this question spoken or unspoken, thrown at me by every Tom, Dick and Harry. In future I am planning to give this link to anyone who asks me the question. funny

Why have I not got married?

The fact is I honestly don’t know. But I have some theories.

1. It might be because of the marital profile I have put up in the Bharat matrimony site. The usual profiles in Indian marriage market go on to say, “I am kind, sincere, good, decent back-ground, fun for life blah blah, which when summed up means, “I am God’s perfect gift to humanity and I want another one of his masterpieces as spouse.” Maybe my profile fizzles out instantly in comparison as it says:

“I am a good girl, Oh really I am, and I do believe in fantasy creatures like dragons, goblins and good men. 

Now for the man I want to hunt down, I mean find, you must look like Brad Pitt and earn like Bill Gates. Must be interested in mutual hate discussions and must be skilled at insulting, screaming and slamming doors in public. If you are what they say as ‘Mr Right’ then you will know instinctively that I am ‘Mrs Always Right’. My favorite hobby is designing night-wear for ghosts. It will be great if you can be supportive and give me ideas on that one. I can talk for hours without any topic. You must be willing to listen and contribute meaningful ‘Ohs’ and ‘Ahas!!’ but nothing more.If at all things don’t work out well for us, then I give you permission to unfriend me from real life but don’t ever unfriend me from Facebook.”

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Archetypes and Kedi Billa and Killadi Ranga!

Kedi-Billa-Killadi-Ranga-Movie-Stills-2

Now, the archetype is a very interesting concept in psychology. Just like the body has its organs,the mind too has its organs and some    of its organs are the archetypes.  If a single thought can be equated to a single cell, then an idea can be equated to a tissue, and a personality is a collection of ideas that get glued together.

The common man’s understanding is that we all have our own individual personalities and that each of us are unique in our expressions.Some people have delightful personalities while a few others have really some screws missing in their box.  But that is only a very superficial way of understanding ourselves. Our personalities, that we so proudly proclaim as ours, are most often not really ours.

There are typical personality stereotypes in the human psyche, the human unconscious, called as the archetypes that we begin to channelise. There are no exceptions.  Each of us, however unique we might think we are, however successful or failure, each one of us have these archetypal personalities that controls the way we experience our lives.

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The blokes living in Chennai have it better?

A sample: 

“My whole life is spoiled because I had married you. How I wish I had got married to sangeetha.” – This is the husband talking. 

“But Sangeetha is already married and with two kids. The past is past and we have to focus on us.” – The wife. 

“No, I can’t be without talking to her atleast once a day. You are of no use to me.” 

“Then why did you get married to me?” 

“What will I do if you get married to someone else.??” – The husband, in an obvious, matter of fact tone. 

The girl was inconsolable. This is a sample conversation I had with a college girl from Sivagangai. 70% of the girls from that college were married and all 70% were in a personal hell of varying degrees. Not one person who didn’t have tears in her eyes as she recounted experiences out of her marriage, mother in law, husband and parental pressure. 

It so happened that I trained in a finance minister initiative. Minister P. Chidambaram had wanted his constituency Sivagangai’s students to be trained and my company had bagged the contract. I had gone there personally to set pace and spearhead the training. And the experiences that I had were real eye-openers. 

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Couple woes

Been counselling a lot of married couples of late. It was surprising how each one of them began their stories just a little while before marriage. Apparently they were dissatisfied with the spouse for one reason or the other. One felt the to-be-wife was fat. Another felt the husband was miserly. Yet another felt the wife was immature for her age. But each of them had hope that the spouse will change for the better after the marriage. And thus began their journey towards marital doom.Ofcourse, none of them changed. And so began a long war to change the other, to tailor make them for the specific requirements. One marriage has broken now beyond repairs, the one with a miserly husband. The rest of the marriages I was able to successfully resolve the differences and I am very happy about it. But the point is, why say an ‘yes’ when you had the power to say a ‘no’? If you are clear that you could be very happy only with a thin woman, why spoil not only your life but another person’s as well just because you had hope?

Obviously you cannot wait until you came across the perfect lover. And that’s why you married whoever came along that best suited your needs. Then why the hell are you still trying to create the perfect lover instead of investing your time and energy in creating the perfect love? Still cannot forget the woman’s voice trembling with so much hurt and tears spilling out unrestrained as she said “He keeps saying I am fat every opportunity he gets!”

How Far is Far?? – II

So this is a common snapshot of highly disturbing relationships with NPD people.  

When the relationship begins, you cannot believe your luck that you have so charming, intelligent, handsome/beautiful successful a person who treats you so special. Probably, taken in by all that love and attention and wanting to speed up the process you made the first move and spoke your feelings. Wham! The trap closes around you!! The narcissist was waiting for exactly this. This is the stage instead of responding like normal people in the negative or in the affirmative, they put conditions.

A person who has not dealt with a narcissist will ask ‘what is wrong with this? Are we not being specific about our expectations? It is a good thing to do, isn’t it?’… Yes, putting conditions are not a problem as long as the conditions are specific and each of you get a chance to do it. A condition that says, “My Mom has gone to extreme ends to bring us up and I want a wife who respects her” is perfectly fine. “I am a woman who is interested in career and I will not give that up for anything” is a valid condition.

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How Far is Far? – I

If you are in a relationship, then you had better read this! 

There are all kinds of people. Sometimes we fall head over heels in love with one. All well until the fall does not take its toll on us. There are many researches as to what makes us get attracted to a person and why we fall in love and what dynamics operate later. My intent for this post is not those researches. It is a plain urge to share a bit of knowledge and experience that might be life-saving to someone who might land upon on this page. Well, no drama there, when I say ‘life-saving’, I mean life-saving.

At the outset I wish to draw the difference between a personality issue and a personality disorder. Most of us have personality issues that are fine when we are alone but create problems when we get together with someone who has an incompatible personality. Say for example I am fixated on being organised and I fell in love with someone who can live comfortably in a pigsty, then we are bound to have issues sooner or later. I grow up believing that All husbands must be like my father/ all wives must be like my mother. But there is no way two human beings are ever going to be alike. There, we have a disappointment now. These are issues. And these will be there in any union. That ideal man or woman who you have sculpted in your head does not exist and it can come as a rude shock when you wake up to reality. Continue Reading

Women don’t have a Soul. Period!!

See, women don’t have a soul.  That’s it, Period. What?? You say no? Ok, let me change the sentence a little. May be they do have a soul, but it must be very obvious that they have a very inferior soul. much inferior to a man’s, at least. Oh no, not again! You are protesting for this too? How thick can you get? Let’s look at all the circumstantial evidence for my statement, ok? 

Why go far, let’s just take the recent scandal Kristen Stewart Scandal. The 22 year old Kristen cheats on her boy friend Rob to make out with 41 year old Boss/director Sanders, who is married happily with two young kids. Underline the word “boy friend” and underline the word “Married”. Now everyone should know automatically that cheating a boy friend is much more criminal than cheating on a married partner. Especially when you have kids, a 5 year old and a 7 year old, your crime becomes much lesser if you make out with a girl who is twenty years your junior. And of course, you being 41 years old, your mistakes can be forgiven so easily; after all you have not had that much experience at that young age. Your impulsive desire to cheat on your wife is no big deal. So you take only one-twentieth of the total brunt directed towards the black sheep. All this because you have a man-soul only know? A man- soul can get away with anything, stupid! Continue Reading

What if this happens one day?!?

Your husband, (wife if you are a male) comes home one day with a much younger, adorable, sweet woman(man) and tells you excitedly, “Honey, guess what?!? You are so sweet, so cute, so adorable that I decided to have another wife just like you!” Even as you are recovering from the shock he goes on to say, “Is n’t it thrilling to think of the stuff you both can do together everyday! Ahh, its so much fun to have company for you!” Just visualise the scenario as though it is happening now. :-) How would you feel? (Substitute wife for husband and ‘she’ for ‘he’ through out the post if you happen to belong to the male species.)

A few days later you, your husband and the new wife go for a party. All your husband’s friends and even your friends just pass over you with a casual “how are you” thrown half-handedly over your head, but are gushing endlessly over the new wife “Choo chweet, Isn’t she a darling?!! Awww.. cutie pie!!” Again, visualise yourself nibbling your lower lip, and tell me how are you feeling?

As the new wife is settling in very well and consuming all your husband’s attention, you are sulking in your room. One day, your husband barges into your room and starts rummaging in your shelf. He selects few of your clothes and accessories. You ask what is wrong and your husband off-handedly answers “Oh honey, I am sure these things have become old and you can give it off to her!” – Your reactions? Continue Reading

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