What the young Team India taught us in Australia
By Priyanka Loonker
“For all of us in India and across the world, if you ever score 36 or lesser in life, remember: it isn’t the end of the world. The spring stretches backward only to propel you forward. And once you succeed, don’t forget to celebrate with those who stood by you when the world wrote you off,” strong words by Sachin Tendulkar. What a great win! #proud!
However, I cannot help but fathom the pressure on the team before this big win. Injuries, top players out of the series, and disgustingly enough racism! Anxiety levels would be off the roof.
It is normal to feel anxious from time to time, especially if you have an exam or competition around. But for many people, anxiety is a constant companion, always lurking behind the next corner. An estimated 2-5% of the population are living with the constant worrying and panic attacks that define one of the most common mental illnesses: generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).
And so this gets me thinking about our society right now… how it may serve us all to have a small glimpse into the lives of those people whose brains feel this way all the time.
Then how do we overcome this? Motivation is what drives us to make things happen – but staying motivated isn’t always easy. Motivation can be both positive and negative- Positive motivations focus on the positive things that will happen when you take action. For example: ‘Finishing this assignment means I’m only a step away from being qualified.’ Negative motivations focus on the negative backlash that will occur if you don’t take action. For example: ‘If I don’t finish this assignment in the next few hours, I’ll fail my course.’
Negative and positive motivations can both be effective in different circumstances. However, it’s much easier to do something because you actually want to, rather than because you want to avoid a particular outcome if you don’t do it. If you don’t have a positive plan of action, using negative motivation can make you feel helpless and may even reduce your motivation, now that’s a route best avoided!
One might be experiencing fear of the future in the short term (next week, next term) as well as in the distant future (end of the year, 2021, and beyond). As a result, you’re likely experiencing a range of different emotions, including stress, fear, uncertainty, depression, frustration, anger and disappointment.
While these emotions are understandable, it’s important to be kind to yourself and realistic in your thinking. When you notice that you are worrying, say to yourself: ‘It’s understandable that I’m feeling stressed, as this is a very unusual situation to be in. What’s the best thing I can do right now to take care of myself and to help me feel better?’
Try to be as kind and supportive when speaking to yourself as you would be if you were talking with your best friend.
We wash our hands, over and over again, we clean, over and over again, we keep our distance, standing a prescribed number of feet away from people, secluding ourselves for safety, both ours and theirs—not able to leave the safety of our homes… and, so I ask that when all of this is over, and we return to our “normal” lives and our lowered levels of anxiety, that we hold a place in our hearts to remember what it felt like in this moment of time.