Guiding Light: Emotional resilience

-- Swami Brahmavidananda

There is a lot of talk about suicide and bullying, nepotism and favouritism. All of that is the harsh reality of the world we are living in. It is also true that we have to create a society where there is no bullying, nepotism or favouritism - A society which is fair and ensures equal opportunities for all. That is a dream, a goal that societies have to work towards.

No society has completely achieved it. It is also true that when people are going through depressing times, they have to reach out to people. They have to reach out to friends. Friends and family should also be sensitive enough to pick up signs of depression in people and reach out and talk to them. All of that is true.

At the same time, one dimension is being completely forgotten in all these discussions. It is the responsibility of each of us to develop a hardy personality. Without losing our emotional sensitivity or emotional responsiveness we can create a certain amount of emotional toughness. To be emotionally hardy so that we don’t internalize what is external and let things bog us down.

Accepting some of the unfortunate realities of life we respond in a creative, proactive manner rather than go down, under all these so-called attacks and harm ourselves or others. It is important to recognise this important aspect. Each of us can develop some amount of emotional resilience to handle the so-called unfair situations in life.

It is easy to label it as unfair and wrong and do nothing about it. I accept that certain situations are unfair. Are we going to cry and wallow in it? Are we going to be bogged down with it? Or are we going to respond proactively and creatively? That will require an emotional strength to accept realities and respond to it.

We create emotional resilience as an important aspect of our personalities. We recognise the support system we have, do whatever is necessary including nurturing our trust in God, handle our emotions and learn to not internalize what is harmful to us.

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