Saving yourself in this era of emotional upheaval

Narrating a real life incident from the childhood which focuses on bouncing back during the crisis.

We are coping with Covid-19 pandemic in our styles. Some are using dating apps, escaping through social media, numbing senses via alcohol, engrossing in the virtual world of video games, binge-watching, starting-up and list are endless. These are all ways of coping up with stress which this uncertain situation has embarked upon all of us. We have different ways to calm down this emotional upheaval and by mentioning one episode from my childhood I will be reflecting on one of the coping skills that I have developed in life.

When I was a small kid, my mother used to give me cash in hand for fetching milk from the nearby milk booth. The booth was located on the other side of the park. One day while I was crossing through the shrubs I suddenly released that I had lost my small purse. My heart sank. I was afraid that my mom would scold me after knowing the truth. So I started sobbing and on my way back home, I strolled through the entire park with the hope of finding notes on the grass.

Finally, I somehow reached home. My mother saw me crying and asked what happened. I told her everything. She asked me to come along with her to the park. I couldn't understand her response. After reaching the park, I showed her how where all I went. She walked for some minutes and stopped near the pond. She asked me to stop crying and listen to her carefully.

She asked me to gather 5-6 stones. I somehow managed. Then, she asked me to throw them into the pond one-by-one. I was in no mood to comprehend this absurd activity and did what she told me. Alteast she didn't scold me, I thought. I threw one rock very weakly. I was exhausted from my mental tension and constant weeping. She said, "throw one again but this time I want to see energy." I managed, but I failed. She again said, "this time I want to hear the sound of a pebble dropping into the pond." I managed. Again she said, "now throw and I want to see ripples and waves." I wanted to end this long & unnecessary, out of context activity so I gave it a full shot and managed to form ripples.

Little did I know she was preparing me for life. Resilience and boldness are the way of life - she taught. Psychological resilience is the capacity to respond quickly and constructively to crises. Every time you feel low or feel life ends here, you have to be bold and solve problems until they form ripples. My major takeaway from this episode was that I understood I couldn't make it the first time as I was in another mindset. I was thinking of losing money but when I started throwing and playing the game, I excelled.

Throwing stones can be a metaphorical analogy for redirecting your emotions onto the world or the person. It works on a common assumption that we should not take anything very personally.

First, you have to choose which stones are worthy of picking. And then decide with what intensity we have to throw them. Because we have to make sure we make maximum ripples in the pound and keep playing the game.


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