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Advice: Don’t worry, be happy!

Advice: Don’t worry, be happy!

“Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.” — Ovid

THE key to a happy life and a successful present is to stop taking tension. Do you agree? If you say “Yes”, you are fortunate enough to have realised this, but those who do not agree, the article is all about the reasons that will turn your ‘No’ into a ‘Yes’!

To begin with, let’s start with a very simple example. Let’s suppose you are at the end of the third and last hour of your examination and you haven’t revised your paper nor have you copied your MCQ answers to the answer sheet. Just then the invigilator says that you only have 10 minutes left to finish up your paper.

Panic-stricken, you decide to hurry up; but the shiver in your hands wouldn’t allow you to do so because the flood of tension would now be running through your veins. The result of which wouldn’t be very surprising – revision was more or less of no help and in the hurry you got some of the answers copied wrong as well. If you had stayed calm, you could have managed to not only complete your paper but also check and double-check your answers.

Be it the last moment tension, or the stress three days before your exam, it will always lead to you ending up in a much bigger mess than you already think you are in. Get off it! What I mean is, no good is going to come out of it. If you start worrying days before your exam, you wouldn’t be able to study properly due to the pressure on your mind. However, a little bit of tension is absolutely required every time to keep one going, yet too much worry about what is going to happen in the future will simply ruin your present.

Ask yourself a very basic question; is it worth worrying about things? Will the situation be any different? You know the answer is no, then why worry? Let your worries go, don’t obsess about the future! Your life should be about living as happily as you can — right now. Live in the moment! The past is gone, the future is yet to come, so why think and worry about things that are not there. You will just be missing the joys that life is offering you now.

Following is a Buddhist saying that will help explain to you such a situation:

“If you can solve your problem, then what is the need of worrying? If you cannot solve it, then what is the use of worrying?”

A key point to remember is that overloading your brain with tension will always result in its malfunction. You’ll find that you can perform best when you are not putting unnecessary pressure on yourself. A calm state of mind always brings outs better results, no matter the situation is.

Many students eat less and lose weight during exams due to stress. And some can even convince themselves to believe that tension actually works in their favour — after all weight loss is what’s desired by most. But the fact remains, eating less means deficiency of nutrients in the body, that too at a time when they should be giving the body the right kind of food to boost the energy level to support the extra work the brain is doing.

Also if you are stressed, there is much greater chance of the conversion of food to fat. “Stress leads to the secretion of cortisol in our body. The function of cortisol is to lower our metabolic rate, prevent fat burning and help convert food to fat. The process of conversion of food to fat occurs because you are feeling disturbed, which the body perceives as threat to its survival, hence its starts protecting itself in this way. So the cells which need energy remain deprived, and the fat cells get even bigger,” says Rujuta Diwekar, a well-known nutritionist.

So it’s not only enough to eat during this time but also to maintain a calm state of mind so that the food we eat only brings us benefits and not harms us in anyway. And according to Neale Donald Walsch, an American author, “Worry is pointless. It is wasted mental energy. It also creates bio-chemical reactions which harm the body, producing everything from indigestion to coronary arrest, and a multitude of things in between.”

Taking tension is very natural but there are ways to avoid it. Just let yourself prepare before the hour! Get to the cause, why is it that the problem getting on your nerves? You fear things might go wrong, right? Being unsure of what your future will be like? Okay then, the question is why? Here comes your belief.

It’s an old saying that to take tension is human, but to prolong that feeling is a sign of a person’s weak faith. So strengthen your trust in Allah and firmly believe that everything happens only and only if He commands it to ‘Be!’, and so whatever happens to us is for our own good in ways which we know not.

Also remember that plan and action are also part of the equation. Trusting Allah does not mean that you stop working towards your goal. You should have faith that the outcome of your hard work is in the hands of Allah, and working hard will get you to your goal and taking tension may only take you away from it.

Simple tip

IF you are stressed, try to breathe normally. The rate at which you breathe usually speeds up when you are tense and when you bring it down to the normal level, you’ll automatically feel relieved. Tension is never going to set things right, it will only make them worse!

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