The art of identifying one’s flaws and imperfections and turning around the same in favour is no mean feat. The lesson taught here is to not just live with your faults and inaccuracies but to also work on those grey areas only to bounce back with a bang. The scars might stay under the stitches forever but a go-getter never stops to brood over his/her past and sulk in silence. Instead, he or she tides over the rough waters and script a story of triumph. This never-say-die attitude is beautifully explained by a Japanese metaphor termed Kintsugi, the painstaking craft of putting broken pottery pieces back together with gold. The word is an amalgam of Kin (gold) and Tsugi (join), literally meaning “mending with gold” or recuperating with time in reality.
Beauty is not Skin-Deep
The vital stats of physicality could be superficial but not the alcoves of somebody’s mind and soul. Dive deep into one’s heart and you are sure to find a fathomless bottom there with varied layers of thoughts and shades of emotions. Body shaming is now converted to body positivity and fairness creams are giving way to natural dusky skin tones. Life gives you birth marks, stretch marks, scratches, bunions, warts and bruises through uncountable encounters and pitfalls. “You don’t need to be ashamed of those and make an effort to hide the same. Just warm up to all kinds of experiences — good or bad — that offer a perspective towards life, test a person’s endurance level and shape his/her philosophy,” suggests a psychologist.
More than a glowing skin, a heart of gold is what required for navigating the trials and tribulations. Don’t be judgmental about yourself looking into the mirror. Instead of finding flaws, try and appreciate the innate talent, the efforts made and all the hard work put in to achieve those long-cherished aims and aspirations. “Be inspirational and never suffer the syndrome of inferiority complex. Your dimples may be your beauty symbols but your spots and pimples can be overlooked behind your enviable confidence and the right kind of attitude,” shares a life coach.
We should elevate our wokeness quotient and believe in the adage that there ought to be room for everyone everywhere. In terms of beauty too, we must realise to acknowledge the parameters of God-gifted natural beauty. Models from being short-statured to plus size are scorching the ramp with equal élan alongside the tall lean brigade. Beauty pageants are also patronising other types of beauty rather than measuring features based on conventional yardsticks and are testing contestants on the scale of purity of mind and soul and intellect.
Comfortable In Your Skin
Instead of covering up the defects and blemishes, it is okay to celebrate one’s natural self. Sometimes, mood make-up scores over parlour or salon treatments. A little wear and tear in the body or of the mind is okay than suppressing the sadness under layers of pancaked warpaint. “For general well-being, it is crucial to feel comfortable in one's skin. Accepting our deficiencies and our true selves is more important than constantly trying to conceal any perceived errors. After all, to err is human,” observes aesthetic consultant and physician Dr. Saru Singh.
She reassures individuals to develop a positive body image that is consistent with who they truly are by asking them to practise self-recognition and self-love. “We can egg people on to appreciate their individuality to ultimately help inculcate a more positive and health-conscious mindset,” she asserts.
Heart of the Matter
It is very important to be a satisfied soul with what you have in life and not crib about what you don’t. “Remaining a gratified soul with what little you have in your pocket is of paramount importance for overall well-being and happiness. Contentment and gratitude for the things you possess can greatly enhance your mental and emotional health. When you focus on what you have rather than what you lack, it buoys a ray of optimism on life and diminishes stress,” espouses Dr. Rahul Chandhok, head consultant at mental and behavioural science department in Artemis Hospital, Gurgaon.
Obviously, one should strive for excellence and set goals to further improve but to be content with one’s current circumstances can be an ideal source of inner peace and joy. “The ability to find happiness in the present moment is a powerful skill to experience a fulfilling life,” reasons Dr. Chandhok.
Turning Over a New Leaf
It is immensely crucial to sew the torn and tattered bits of life and limp back to normalcy with resilience after being struck with a tragedy and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Learning from your past mistakes to never repeat the same and moving on for good to start afresh are highly recommended by life coaches. “Rebounding from deep grief and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) with sheer resistance is imperative for personal growth and recovery. While facing trauma and PTSD is undeniably challenging, taking the bulls by the horns can bail individuals out of crisis and help them find strength amid adversity. It involves seeking support from friends, family or mental health professionals as well as practising self-care, repairing rifts and gradually rebuilding a sense of normalcy,” prescribes the psychoanalyst.
Resilience empowers individuals to confront their traumatic episodes and gradually regain control over their lives. “It's a testament to the human spirit's ability to patch up and thrive, even when it is worst hit or in the wake of the most profound difficulties. “Overcoming a massive mental setback may consume enough time and effort but with the toughness of the mind, it is possible to make a comeback and reconstruct the collapsed castle of life. One can reclaim the lost moments in a different manner and recreate fond memories,” urges Dr. Chandhok.
From the world of sports to entertainment, literature, music, paintings, science, travel, technology and so on and so forth, people with inner eye and internal light, soared from the ashes like a Phoenix and flew higher with shining colours. They set goals with the focus of an eagle and the steadfastness of a tortoise to never budge an inch from achieving their target. From acid attack victims with a fighter’s force to visually-impaired singers/musicians to gutsy amputated swimmers and bold blade runners sans limbs, these ‘special’ unsung heroes always rise to the occasion when it matters the most. They remain silent unconditional performers who more than rewards, require love, care, recognition and a huge round of applause for their determination and courage.
“The idea of individuals with physical or emotional challenges serving as an inspiration for others is not uncommon. The news to feel immensely proud of is that at the last Olympics and Para Olympics, the Indian Paralympians bagged greater number of medals than the able-bodied Olympians,” reports Dr. Jitender Aggarwal, founder and CEO, Sarthak Educational Trust.
Turning the Tables
The para-athletes overcome physical hurdles with sheer perseverance and grit. Lack of proper coaches, adequate resources, training facilities, nutrition and practically no backing are some of the key obstacles that para-athletes face in this nation. “The single-minded aim and tenacity of pushing limits and transcending the stumbling blocks coming on their way to win medals for their country is the underlying driving force of these people with special needs. Observing how individuals with disabilities conquer these hindrances can inspire others to tap into their own intrinsic skills to be able to lead a more authentic, liberating life,” corroborates the life coach.
This is the case in all the sectors like education, sports, corporate world, et al where PWDs (person with a disability) are slogging hard to prove themselves and to the world that they can even emulate their healthy counterparts. “The human brain should be directed towards concentrating solely on more meaningful aspects of life rather than pursuing trivial desires and indulging in petty matters. Wins and losses are but both sides of the same coin. Some amount of pep talk is necessary at every step of the failure, which is the stepping stone to success. It's important to respect and rally around people in their individual journeys and choices without judging them from a distance like an armchair critic,” deduces Dr. Aggarwal.