12 Precious principles I follow for Mental Fitness
Recently in one of my talks, someone asked me how to maintain good mental health. The time constraint then made me share a brief response. Later as I thought about the question, I could identify some activities which helped/are helping me in keeping my mental health in good condition. While I didn’t realise the benefits of these activities when I was doing them, the positive effects are hard to miss now. I am sharing with you all the 12 precious principles which I am practising with a hope that they may help you too. This may not be an exaustive list but a few important pointers.
1. Physical Exercises/Yoga/Pranayama/Meditation – Due to the release of feel-good hormones, I always feel good after a session of yoga or swimming. It makes me feel more positive and active throughout the day. It always amazes me how pranayama and meditation make our mind both calm and active at the same time.
2. Trust – I believe in the goodness of fellow human beings. Our natural tendency is to be kind and friendly. There may be exceptions, but if we get cynical our life will become miserable. The support of many good souls has made me what I am today and I wish to carry the goodness forward.
3. Be yourself – I am always myself irrespective of the situation. It gives me the freedom to think and act with clarity. Let's say you go to a function with grand costumes; how do you feel after coming back, taking a shower and changing to your casuals? Comfortable? It's the same comfort you'll experience when you be yourself.
4. Accept the challenges which are unavoidable – In my case, I learnt to accept the impact of polio and its after effects. It helped me a lot to lead life happily. Always look for solutions; when they are hard to come by, accept the situation and learn to live with it.
5. Never compare – I always feel that I am a unique piece of this universe. Hence Madhavi cannot be compared with others. I believe the same in case of others as well. Whenever you compare yourself with others, you are accepting that you are inferior to them.
6. Be near to Nature – I try to spend as much time as possible with Nature. If I'm not able to go out, I make it a point to take some time off to watch the sky, clouds, stars and trees from my window.
7. Learning New things – I always upgrade myself by trying new things. Yesterday’s Madhavi will never be equivalent to today’s Madhavi. Today’s Madhavi is better than Yesterday’s Madhavi. This is because of my new learnings and experiences.
8. Always think about things in your hand – We have many things in our life which we can manage with our knowledge, effort, experience etc. Only a few things may not be in our hands. If we stop thinking about things which are not in our control and start working on things which are in our hands, we can always live happily.
9. Support others/Give back – We will get a lot of satisfaction when we support fellow beings in need. To help others we need not be financially rich. An empathetic heart is all it takes.
10. Have faith in GOD/Laws of Universe – Belief in GOD/Laws of Universe will give us a lot of mental peace.
11. Keep the child within you alive - like a child, I am curious to know about things which I find interesting. If you leave me in sand or water, I will play like a small kid even today. The child in me helps me to come out of disappointments and immediately shift my focus.
12. Siblings Call – Me and my siblings have a group call every day. In that call, we share our new learnings/experiences, spiritual matters, impromptu speeches on the topics of common interest etc. We recently started singing also. None of us are singers, but we just sing and encourage each other. Now our parents say that our music has improved! We have plans to try mono-acting too. We know that we may not use these skills outside. But trying new things helps increase our interest. Now we all wait for our daily call. Everyone feels lighter after the call.