FB CAPTION CHALLENGE – 7

This time the entries have gone higher than the previous challenge which brought a smile on my face. This time, the picture was very sweet and funny and probably that’s the reason why I received more entries. Everyone has written excellent one liners. I thoroughly  They were commendable which are given below:

Preeta Bhatnagar – The Race For Hunger.

Aditi Chitale Ranade – Raise voice against injustice, together we can!

Aditi Chitale Ranade – Stand up and speak for yourself. Make yourself heard.

Pradita Kapahi – I can sing the loudest… Tweep, tweet, tweeeeeeeee…

Archana Dipu – When you sing in chorus, there is no room for competition.

Savio Pães – Sing…Sing a Song…Sing it loud..Sing it STRONG.

Ashalata Chauhan – All praise be to God.

Prabhjot Kaur Saini – The family that eats together and sings together always stays together.

Shrabani Tripathy – … Open wide your mouth.. And I will fill it ….

Kuljeet Saini – Demand with all your might what you Desire.. Mom is listening..

Isaac Mohanty – Better to be silent than to open mouth wide.

Kalpana Kameshwari Vogeti – Time to prove our might, jet set go!

Asangla Patra – When you sing aloud with your whole heart to the LORD, You don’t care how you look!

Avinash Das – The beauty of TEAM, discards the differences of individual size and strength!

Paresh Das – The world’s best choir outside its nest.

Mr. Paresh Das’s caption inspired me a lot which talks about how we do the best when we come out of our shell or nest. Ms. Asangla Patra’s caption reminded me of how important it is to praise God at all times and that’s how we derive strength from Him. Ms. Archana Dipu’s caption depicts how we are not supposed to compete with each other when we are in one family, one group, one team and so on… Ms. Aditi Chitale Ranade’s caption was about how standing unitedly against injustice is effective or bring forth fruit. Very motivating. But what impressed me the most this time was Avinash’s one liner and I don’t need to explain it because the quote says it all… It was beautiful and spot on!!!

 CONGRATULATIONS, AVINASH DAS!

Note:  The Winning Poster Certificate was set as the featured image of this post and will be displayed on the site’s sidebar. 

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DO NOT BE BURDENED BY INSECURITIES

In life, we come across so many people. Some people are unique in a good way, and some in not so good way. In one of my recent trips, I came across one such girl, named Bhavya. On the positive, she is very bubbly, fun, and talks a lot. Like way too much of talking, she cannot stay silent for a couple of minutes. Every day, before we start our day’s venture, she would hold 2 – 3 options for outfits she wants us to choose from. Every choice a person makes, she would find some way in which that would not make her look beautiful. This dress is too dull, the sleeve is too long, the color is not suitable for today’s weather and whatnot. Initially, I thought she is indecisive. To be indecisive is a small problem, but sooner I realized she is looking for acceptance from others. After two days, as our group became more close, she started asking many more opinions of others. Literally regarding everything, including what she should order to eat. After a certain point in time, I wondered how she would live if she were on all her own.

We were more girls on the trip than boys. Bhavya was actively looking out for a partner. So, every good looking boy she sees, she would turn around to me and ask, “What do you feel about him? Is he good looking?“. Once or twice wouldn’t have been so irritating to me, but after 10 times in half an hour, I responded with a little bit of a serious face, “You are asking a wrong person. I came all the way here to sync in the beauy of the place and culture rather than invest my time in validating whether someone is good looking or not. Moreover, if you are the one who is going to ask him out, your opinion is what matters, not mine”. As you can imagine, this triggered Bhavya’s anger. She did not talk with me that day but wished me at the next day’s breakfast table. I returned her wish and smiled in response. I thought things would get back to normal, but they didn’t.

She continued to ask questions as is, so there was no effect on her to what I said. Instead, there was an addition to every question of hers, “Don’t judge me ok”. So, now the question would be, “Ok, now, please don’t judge me. Tell me which ice cream do you think I should try??”. I was literally feeling like, “Oh God!! Please let go of me Bhavya” but I could not say that out. Finally I am the one who is judgemental 🙂 There were two other girls who tried to explain to her how she is being too naive and looking for other’s approval to do things. There were a few who literally judged her that she is too negative and indecisive.

I believe she is thinking in negative ways, or double-checking all her choices because she is insecure. Insecurity breeds a lot of negativity in a person. Such people always think like Bhavya. They are not confident enough because they presume others are going to criticize or make fun of them if the choice turns out to be the wrong one. They would constantly look for approval, be nice to others. They want to be liked. They literally strive to make a place. Insecurity does not enter a person always because of fear. Sometimes, it might have developed purely because of others, how people would have treated them. They might have heard phrases like, ” You are not beautiful“, “you look so fat”, “you are a loser”, “you cannot accomplish anything in life” and took them to their heart. Because of such treatment from others, they constantly cannot stop thinking what others would think of them. Living with insecurity is like a cursed life.

Insecurity can change a person’s thought process upside down if it is not addressed. If you encounter such people who are seeking for approval, fill confidence in them. Tell them, the only person who needs to approve is, they themselves. Making a wrong choice is absolutely ok and that’s how we learn. As kids, we fall and rise on our own. Facing the critics is something similar. Not everyone is going to like us as we are, sometimes they may not like us even if we change ourselves but that is absolutely fine too. In this case, the person who is criticizing is the one who needs to be treated because his/her criticism has crossed boundaries to cause insecurity in many others. The first and foremost way to deal with insecurity is not to feel secure but to have the strength to tolerate insecurity.

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” — Ralph Waldo Emerson

IN THE MIDST OF THE FEAR OF LOSING SOMEONE

INSECURITY FEELING (the fear of losing someone/something) is quite apparent in human life. In fact, every now and then we wrestle with this fear. We all have noticed Mom always protects their babies putting pillows around them when he/she is alone in bed. We are advised to walk on the footpath because there is the possibility of the accident if we walk on the road. On a larger point, it would not be wrong to cap our 21st century as a “Password-Protected” generation. Whether it is to get some cash or login to our desktops or unlocking the doors of our posh houses, we all need “passwords”, but WHY? 

Well, the answer is too simple “WE ARE AFRAID OF LOSING OUR BELOVED PEOPLE AND OUR CHOICEST BELONGINGS!”

I strongly believe there are good replacements when we lose our choicest materials. A couple of weeks back accidentally I broke my cell phone and the next week I took a new one of higher configuration. All that the new device asked me to do is to sync it to my Google account to restore all of my data. BUT ALAS… THERE IS NO PROPER REPLACEMENT RELATIONSHIP.

Often in life, we come to such a place,

It becomes too difficult to make a choice.

Fear of losing people seems so grisly,

Our mind stops working repeatedly.

As we try to take one more step with courage,

Fear of losing people again surrogates.

Dear God, this is the place where I’m standing today,

Can’t You take this fear of losing people far away???

Last year, as I was navigating through the fear of losing one of my beloved people, this is what I was praying for quite a long time. Well, neither God answered in my desired way nor He removed the sting of fear. But as always He is mysterious in all His ways, He tried to train my mind through it. Probably, He is confident enough about the permanence and goodness of the fear of losing our beloved ones in our life.

In this good fear, the characters and situations are timely replaced but the fear is always punctuated to our life. Positively thinking, this good fear works as FENCE in all our relationships. It not only restricts us from crossing the ethical and moral peripheries of our relationships but also elevates the relationship to a glorious plateau.

Considering another side of the paradoxical nature of “INSECURITY FEELING”, we are easily victimized by losing the peace of our mind. In the anxiety of insecure feelings, we lean towards the unethical and inappropriate ways of gripping our relationships. Jealousy, harsh behavior, and abusive words start butchering our relationships which gradually results in losing our beloved ones.

IN THE MIDST OF THE FEAR OF LOSING SOMEONE, we need to adopt two basic ideas:

  1. CONTROL YOUR ANXIETY: Insecure feeling gives rise to an anxious mind and anxious mind always lacks peace and wild in thinking. Any decision that is taken in anxiety is extremely partial, self-centered and sinful in nature.
  2. TRUST GOD: As we realize a particular situation is beyond our control and the possibility of losing someone will be too costly, we look for help outside of us. Usually, we don’t seek help from a stranger, we seek only from trusted ones. When it is about ” TRUSTING SOMEONE” the best option I would prefer is “GOD” because He is not like a human who can change in a moment.

God is the source of PEACE & POSSIBILITY and WISDOM & UNDERSTANDING. And all that we lack in fear is exactly that! We run out of peace, we only see hopelessness and understanding seem impossible to us.

As we trust God in the midst of fear of losing someone and pray to Jesus instead of responding to our fears, the peace of God dawns on our minds. In the peace of mind, we got able to understand both ends of the situation – our own and our beloved ones. This understanding guards our hearts and mind to make the right choice.

That’s what in the Bible I learned,

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

I DON’T WANT TO LOOK DUMB

Year 2016, I failed my first ever examination.  And by examination I mean literally examination where candidates sit in a room and test their knowledge about a particular subject. (My conscience is knocking me at this moment “Are you sure FIRST TIME? What about the one or two competitive exams you appeared for 🤔?”  Pat comes my answer when the results are unknown I can easily state conspiracy theories😎).  But in this situation results were out instantly and I flunked. What an embarrassment! My head hung in shame and searching for excuses or you can say solace in answers like “you are not alone, relax! Out of 20 people present there only one or two cleared the test. And there was one candidate who got it all wrong. And you were just 2 points away from the passing mark” and many points in the same league just to console my hurt heart which was crying deep inside “Ab kaise muh dikhaaoge gharwaalo ko” (how would you face your family now?).

Why I was ashamed? Is it because I had to shell out more money (I forgot to tell that it was a driving theory test) I preferred to give my test in English? Is it because my husband had to skip many lunches at home as I was preparing hard for this 🙈?  Probably because I was taking myself too seriously, trying too hard to keep up my image of a “topper”.  My failure in that exam was a result of my fear, pressure to prove myself, in short my insecurity (My good friend Rajnandini mentioned in her article “No Insecurity when God is your Security“. Result could have been different if I would have concentrated a little bit more on logic of driving lessons, just saying.

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(Image Credit – Google Inc.)

Coming to the current year, 2019. I finally cleared my driving theory test with an excellent score. And comes the next stage, I am finally at the steering wheel. Thought practical will be easy but it’s been 16 hours, 4 hours per week but I am still at gear 2 and my instructor continuing his high pitched shrilled voice “Kalpana – what about maintaining your right? Look how close we are to the edge; look how far we are from the edge; Why is your car trembling? You can’t change the gear without handling clutch” and he continues.  At the end of every session he repeats himself “don’t drive with hesitations, pressure and fear. Driving isn’t that difficult.”

And a deep introspection of his words again puts me in the dock asking myself  “why do you fear so much? Why do you want to prove yourself ? Why not relax and let it sink?” Answer is probably  I am still in control of my insecurities instead of my car 😁 – I don’t want to look and sound dumb. I have the pressure of learning how to drive for my kids but the pressure of proving myself is greater than anything else.

All said and done I don’t have any inhibitions to accept that yes I am an insecure person. My insecurities stem from the fact that I want to guard my image, I fear people’s perception about me. To put it simply – I don’t want to look dumb. I am sure there are many more people with me on the same page, sailing the same boat. We take up things to prove ourselves, we hesitate to clarify our doubts because we fear mockery, we hesitate to say NO because we don’t want to come across as rude, in short we are too indulged in ourselves or take ourselves too seriously.

It’s time to break shackles of our insecurities and to breathe free.  Reason – our “image” is not of tad importance to anyone.  It isn’t a picture of  Mona Lisa decorating the Louvre Museum, distortion of which would make a huge difference to anyone. what say? Do share your experiences and start breaking and  breathing free because every iota of world’s creation and creature have it’s own importance. Just bask and soak yourself in that glory. Meanwhile I will try the same 😁.

DISCARD THE INSECURITIES

When we talk about insecurity, it can be understood as an uneasy feeling which can occur when we feel inferior in front of others. This surrounds us from several irrational thoughts and negative vibes. Though we know, we are absolutely fine but when we see others in a better state than us, we might become insecure. 

The same has happened to me a number of times. I remember, when I was in class 7, my shoes became old and the buckle broke. I used to feel so insecure among my friends, though my father promised to purchase a new pair after a few weeks. For me, waiting for a few weeks was similar to an eternity. I didn’t feel confident while standing in the assembly. However, the broken buckle could be fixed but then my toes started to feel uncomfortable, due to a slight increment in my height. Now I had to purchase a new pair else my toes would come out any time. I couldn’t ask my father to purchase the shoes immediately, as he had some financial burden. Though he bought me a new pair of shoes after a few weeks, as promised. 

Not only this, I used to feel insecure while I used to sit with my college friends. Coming from a middle-class family, I knew I can’t afford everything and I shouldn’t have everything even if I can afford them. As we need to save money for the crisis. But the insecurity in me didn’t understand this. I used to feel quite uneasy when I used to sit in the canteen. Though I had money, I preferred to save it. 

Sometimes, the insecurity in me forbade me to hang out with my friends. Even if I wore my best clothes, I used to feel insecure due to my short height. I used to wear those heels to look taller. Sometimes, I felt insecure due to my dusky skin tone and pouty lips. I used to think, ‘My friends are so taller, I look so short’, ‘My lips are not so beautiful as the actresses,’ ‘My skin tone is dusky, I wish I had fair tone’ and what not.

But then I learned, these things don’t matter. All that matters is how beautifully one carries his/her flaws. I learned to accept myself the way I was. Trust me I became so happy afterward. Life seemed to be quite beautiful. Now I hardly care about how people perceive me because I know my flaws make me beautiful and there is nothing to feel insecure about myself. 

I often come across people who feel insecure among people. To them, I would like to say, get over these insecurities. Embrace your flaws and explore your inner beauty. Do not feel insecure about your financial status. Once you discard all the insecurities, you will gain divine happiness and satisfaction. Insecurity will never make you strong as it decreases your potential. If you are happy with what you have, nobody is richer than you.

NO INSECURITY WHEN GOD IS YOUR SECURITY

I had this pretty friend in college, whose boyfriend forbade her to dress well. He didn’t want her to appear beautiful to the eyes of others. During college functions where we were supposed to be draped in sarees, he put a check on her. As a result, she skipped college functions. How could she be present without adhering to the prescribed dress code for the day? Shades and sun glasses were objected to, because they would draw the attention of other guys towards her. Too suffocating a relationship to be called ‘love’!! Eventually, they broke up when some sense dawned on her and she got fed up with his over-possessiveness.

This guy was ‘insecure’. And that led him to be over-possessive for the girl he claimed to ‘love’.

One thing we need to be clear is about the distinction between ‘inferiority complex’ and ‘insecurity’. Both are different, though there are certain overlapping consequences and that makes them seem similar.

Insecurity arises from a fear of losing things or people.

What gives rise to insecurity?
1. Early life events – A young girl who has seen her father desert her mother, will be likely to be insecure in her love/married relationship.
2. Past experiences of losing – A person who has failed in many job interviews, will feel unsure of retaining the one he gets through to
3. Pressure to prove oneself – When there is a pressure to prove oneself, be it at work or in relationships, one tries his/her best to stop all doorways that might be barriers in the way.
4. Difficulty in accepting ‘no’ – An inability to accept ‘no’ for an answer, causes people to develop an inner feeling of insecurity.
5. Social Media – Too many stories doing the rounds in social media also create the fear of losing. 

Manifestations of insecurity

For the insecure person:
1. Fear
2. Anxiety
3. Stress
4. Anger
5. Occasional insomnia
6. Extreme steps like plotting to harm people who make them insecure
7. Phone tapping
8. Deploying private detectives

Dealing with insecurity

  1. Remember that there is a Chief Architect behind all that happens. So, do not fear losing.
  2. Receive the gifts in your life with gratitude – be it people or jobs or material possessions. This will lead you to value them today without being apprehensive of losing them tomorrow.
  3. Put your past experiences in the hands of God. He’ll shape up your future. Don’t you worry.
  4. Be yourself. Do not give in to pressure to prove yourself. You are a unique creation of God blessed with strengths that you can flaunt and weaknesses that He can convert into strengths.
  5. Never forget that all things and people on earth are transitory. You can never hold on to all things or people that you lay your hands on. So then, why grip them tighter only to stifle yourself and ruin your blessings!

Each of us is safe in the hands of God. When this is learnt, there would be no space for insecurity.

THE HOLLOWING ATTACKS OF THE INVISIBLE INSECURITY

Insecurity is such a powerful sentiment which certainly attacks every living being at one point of time yet it can’t be clichéd since the trap is so obnoxious that the thought process is always backed by our false lies, fear, and anxiety. It is no less than an illness with a well-known cause of over attachment to possessions or beings, to an extent to make one feel sufficiently hollow breaking down the esteem and confidence in oneself. With its symptoms being depicted in every form of relationship, no one can be blamed for its occurrence as it is a self-developed vice. When it comes to facing insecurities, I have struggled with them in many phases of my short existence on this planet. From my first puppy love to competing with the world and paving a way for achievements, insecurity has accompanied me like a best friend, surfacing on the top of my chaotic head, most of the times. The repercussions have taken the form of killing all that has been beautiful or maybe little less pleasant while holding me back in my sphere of ambiguity, bittering the existing relationships and most importantly the one which I share with myself. Whenever insecurity attacks, it weakens my soul giving rise to tendencies that probably do not belong to me while I commit acts out of jealousies, obsessions and fake arrogance.

I remember how during my school days, I used to stay away from the so-called academic achievers of the class, despite being one among them. It was because somewhere or the other I compared myself with them and thus ended up consoling my inner self by pinpointing their flaws. Similar was the case when I was preparing for a competitive exam and the bright answers given by any student used to make me feel low. I would not call it as jealousy since there were no ill regards held for others but it somehow brought my deficiencies to the forefront or made me feel so. Maybe it has been the reason of my efforts to choose the less competitive sector for work until I realized that there are and there will be face-offs everywhere and we are not meant to win or excel every time once we have given our best shot. Competition is actually essential since it is the driving force of excellence in any project or task being undertaken for accomplishment but that doesn’t mean we ought to create the fear of failure. It actually took me two career switches to accept the differences in the level of intelligence and realize the uniqueness of each individual. A lot of courage is required to confess this insecurity but then I am able to share this today because I have overcome it. I realize that it is only when we learn to accept our limitations amid the varying circumstances and seek contentment in our positive traits that we can appreciate others’ beauty of minds. Parenting and upbringing also plays a major role in the cause of this insecurity and hence it is essential to raise the children in a way that they are well aware and satisfied of their own strengths and weaknesses before they are exposed to the worldly charm where there will always be people better than us, be in terms of skill, intelligence or beauty, and other characteristics. Yet it should be engraved in our minds that no one can replicate our personal abilities and talents and perse even if imitation is possible, circumstances and time periods always vary and hence insecurity needn’t take birth. It is rightly said by Steven Furtick:- we cannot compare our behind-the-scenes with everyone else’s highlight reel.

Another brutal attack of insecurity was initiated when infatuation struck the chords of my heart. Obsession with that loved one arose to such an extent that the fear of losing him subsided the genuine concern and actual affection for that person, resulting in relationship failure. Well, it cannot be exactly termed as a relationship but yes while we were in the so-called phase of puppy love, not a single day passed without the thought in my mind that what if it doesn’t work out. And hence with my excessively possessive vibes seeking his attention ended the wonderful friendship between us in utter bitterness and resentment with hurt being created on both sides. Moreover, it becomes very difficult to have things going on a smooth run when it’s me on one hand, holding ego that hampers clear expression in front of the other person triggering further anger and toxicity. Further, the stage of separation worsens the situation when the feelings of inadequacy start creeping in, robbing one of the inner peace. The insecurity gets heightened with shattered self-esteem converted into urging outbreaks of dependency and desperation. However, since it is said that time heals everything and varied realizations follow, I too sought relief and inner liberation in the thought that what is truly meant to be ours, will always find its way and would never pass by. Hence there should be no bouts of insecurity compelling us to commit acts for proving our worth or attaining someone for if it takes so many efforts, it is actually not worth it.

Having confessed some of the instances, I find pleasure in the fact of having not turned this write-up into a parable on insecurity. It actually takes a lot of struggle and hardships for these above-mentioned realizations to enlighten us and seep down into our inner-self. Dealing with insecurity is just like abusing our-self allowing the germs of possessiveness, aggression, and over-thinking to spread in our body. Hence sometimes we need to sit with ourselves to meditate upon our thoughts and feelings so that our intentions can be checked and the blocked energies can be released from time to time. The non-prudent expectations arising from the bacteria of insecurity need to be responded with self –love, and care rather than worry, doubt and greed. It is never about suppressing these insecurities but accepting their occurrence, acknowledging them with consciousness and patience while simultaneously allowing them to pass away so that we can rise above them as soon as possible. True liberation creating happiness can be only experienced when we let these insecurities pass away without acting upon them too much such that it which further opens the door for true love and real golden avenues. Each one of us has the permission and deserves to feel worthy and safe enough in one’s own skin.